Alt Left: This Really Is Fascism

Or rightwing authoritarianism. Or a rightwing dictatorship. Actually it looks a lot more like that than fascism per se, but most rightwing authoritarian states and dictatorships are frankly fascist. We need to get away form this idea that fascism is only this thing that occurred in Europe in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Read some of Trotsky’s early works on fascism. He wrote some of the finest descriptions of fascism ever written.

Fascism can also be seen as palingenetic nationalism. The phoenix sprouting from the ashes. It occurs during a time of a downturn in the nation’s fortunes. The fascists promise a return to the glory days of old, typically invoking blood and soil nationalism, national mythologies, etc. And that is precisely what Trump is doing here – Make America Great Again is a palingenetic nationalist slogan.

Another excellent definition of fascism is “a popular dictatorship against the Left.” It usually occurs during a period when there is a serious threat to Capital from the Left. The capitalists invoke fascism as a last ditch effort to preserve capitalism from the threat from the Left.

Now, onto the Trump Administration. You keep wondering what is the limit of what people will tolerate until they finally say they’ve had enough. It’s like every day brings some new unheard-of outrage or unprecedented assault on our basic norms and values. And no atrocity seems to wake people up. With each new offense and crime, people shrug their shoulders and say, “Oh well.”

It looks like half the population is ok with what is basically fascism or rightwing authoritarianism along Latin American or 3rd world shithole (Philippines, Indonesia, etc.) lines. Pathetic. We’re now a wealthy version of a banana republic.

Think about that real hard. We now have a fascist political party in charge of our country, and nearly half of the population of this country is ok with that, which means that close to half of Americans are now out and out fascists.

Quit the patriotardism! There is something terribly wrong with Americans and perhaps there has been for some time or even all along.

After all, this latest recrudescence has been building since 1964 and particularly since 1980 in its quasi-fascist variant. The roots of this fascism are in American culture. Quit the flag waving. There’s nothing to be proud of anyone.

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2 thoughts on “Alt Left: This Really Is Fascism”

  1. I agree with you strongly Robert. It would be a disaster if America is going to a rightwing Latin America model.

    Latin America is a one percenter society, with little literacy/education outside the elite. Once the mother country was kicked out, warlord factions vied for power, and the basic rule was might makes right. Constitutions were only as valid as the warlord in charge. Corruption and power force were rampant.

    US/Canada had a more developed social structure and education. From the beginning, checks and balances prevented a culture of militaristic/power rule.

    The US had a long history of general self-government dating even prior to independence. Each of the colonies had their own representative assembly that managed some of the responsibilities of the colony, so they already had a representative democracy ingrained in their system.

    Upon independence, the transition to governing themselves wasn’t unusual, as the various states had already had a history of it; the transition wasn’t overwhelming.

    When I read about Iberian history and even Italian, I do see common things between them and Latin America. It’s important to note the instability of European nations versus the UK too.

    I think a lot of their vulnerability to foreign manipulation can also be laid at their more controlled colonial past and (sadly) their Catholic traditions, thus lack of a Protestant work ethic.

    Foreign interference is not responsible for most of the coups in the first half of the 1800s in Latin America. To focus on that is to deny agency among Latin American actors and their various negotiations with the problems they faced. The US for example did not have significant investments in Latin America until the 1880s.

    If we are to look properly at some of the main differences between Anglo and Latin America, the two biggest differences stem from the wholly distinct legal, political, and cultural tradition, particularly around property rights. Secure property rights are an integral part of industrialization, economic development, and political stability in general.

    The various Latin American nations, while they have differences in the details, have inherited a system from the Iberian peninsula (be it Spain or Portugal) which was extremely different from the one inherited by any of the nations derived from the English tradition.

    I think the evidence is that the Catholic Church played a critical role in supporting the conservative factions that prevented social mobility and opposed industrialization.

    Mexico and Central America involved a lot of clerical/aristocratic conservative vs mestizo-criollo liberal conflict. In the 20th century this repeated itself as socialist vs conservative conflict. The US didn’t help things, but I think it was more the US poured gasoline on countries already intermittently on fire.

  2. Well, the biggest joke is the “neer-do-well” dictatorship by these bozos who can’t pass a certification exam! I mean, come one – at least Joe the Plumber can – and sure enough he’s a Republican – also – making the same salary as a doctor – lol.

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