I’m scratching my head about one thing: most authoritarians — whether it’s Putin, Kim Jong Il, or the Ayatolla himself — have control of the media, so as to ensure that the message people hear most often about the past is the one they tell. How, then, can an authoritarian be successful in a society of free speech?
For example, obviously, there are those who believe Trump’s absurd claim that his inauguration crowd was the “biggest ever”. The linked article shows that two researchers discovered that “15 percent of Trump supporters said his inauguration displayed more people, despite looking at direct photographic evidence to the contrary.” As alarming as that is, it’s hard to believe that those 15%, who would insist the sky is pink if Trump says so first, are somehow enough to let him do whatever he wants in the next four years.
(And while we’re comparing crowd sizes…)