It Has Happened Here

It Can't Happen HereIt Can’t Happen Here by Sinclair Lewis

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I finished this a while ago but I forgot to update it. Anyway, I used to get Sinclair Lewis confused with Upton Sinclair, but now I am more certain of how they differ. Upton Sinclair Lewis? No, they are NOT the same person. Upton was a muckracker and I think he is known for a book called The Jungle that was an exposé of the meat-packing industry. He later turned into (or maybe he was always, and I just started noticing that he was) a crank, and I think he even comes under criticism by Sinclair Lewis, or the fictional character who is a newspaper editor Doremus Jessup in It Can’t Happen Here (ICHH) who serves as Sinclair Lewis’ alter ego. Upton Sinclair’s quirk was that he worshipped the false god of Marx — Karl — not Groucho. Sinclair LEWIS, on the other hand, proved to be prescient, and both books can be read as a critique of our 45th President. First, Babbitt is a real estate salesman, and he embodies the shallow business boosterism that was Trump the huckster of Trump University, The Apprentice, Trump Towers, Trump Steaks, etc. Buzz Windrip, from ICHH, is the more dangerous demagogue — much like The Donald, who takes us down the road to a fascist dictatorship.

Sinclair Lewis’ predictions don’t always pan out, but there is enough grist for the mill, enough eerie parallels that do, to make it resonate in our present crisis. Sometimes he goes too far, other times, not far enough! Just as in the book, however, not only could it happen here, it has already happened here, and is still happening here — it is happening RIGHT NOW!!!!!

May God preserve us and have mercy on our miserable souls.

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