It Is Okay To Say The F-Word/ US Is Experiencing The First Stages Of Fascism

syracuseculturalworkers

If it looks, acts and walks like a duck, it is a duck. What the republican President Donald Trump and his sycophant GOP lawmakers in the US Congress along with their donors and supporters have been pushing the US towards, is a more authoritarian government which is marked by a full out attack on the ‘rule of law,’ the free press; restricting the rights of Americans to protest; fostering fear/ hate against the other like immigrants, peoples of color, peoples of other faiths, LGBTQ members and dissenters.

It’s OK to say that the US president is practicing Fascist politics as this is a style of governing that the US president admires in other countries and would like to emulate. As per the author Jason Stanley (described below), “Fascism works by using the Politics of Us and Them.” President Trump, among others, including leaders of Russia, Hungary, India and Turkey, Saudi Arabia, N Korea have been using these techniques of far-right nationalism to gain power and to build their popularity.

As per a 9/2/18 New Haven Register, “Among the tools of fascist politics are propaganda; using conspiracy theories to alter a sense of reality; supporting a hierarchy in which immigrants, minorities and women are considered less worthy; promoting a sense of victimhood, in which the movement toward equality by minorities is seen as a threat to the majority; portraying those not in the majority as lazy or more likely to commit crime; protecting the myth of the traditional family; and idealizing the “pure” rural countryside as opposed to the “corrupt” cities.”

“In calling the news media “fake news” and speaking harshly about immigrants, Trump is using the same strategies, even though the consequences may not be as dire, Stanley said.”

U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim Jong Un stop to talk with the media as they walk from their lunch at the Capella resort on Sentosa Island Tuesday, June 12, 2018 in Singapore. Photo: Evan Vucci / Associated Press / Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved
U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim Jong Un

As per a 2017 Indy 100 report, “According to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, the date is the 27th day of Nisan on the Hebrew Calendar and is the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.

In January 2017 this image of 14 early signs of Fascism, which hangs in the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, went viral for good reason.”

Here’s the list:

  • Powerful and continuing nationalism
  • Disdain for human rights
  • Identification of enemies as a unifying cause
  • Supremacy of the military
  • Rampant sexism
  • Controlled mass media
  • Obsession with national security
  • Religion and government intertwined
  • Corporate power protected
  • Labor [sic] power suppressed
  • Disdain for intellectuals & the arts
  • Obsession with crime & punishment
  • Rampant cronyism & corruption
  • Fraudulent elections

I want the US Democracy that I’ve been a part of for too many years to count. Today, I’m more afraid of the GOP members running our US government than I will ever be of jihadists, terrorists, MS 13 gangs, and women protesters.

I don’t wish to be party to a fascist-like society.  For all those who have noticed and have become fearful of these signs, please VOTE FOR ALL DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES in the upcoming November 2018 elections.

Picture: SARAH ROSE/TWITTER/US HOLOCAUST MUSEUM

On October 15, 2018 Tom McCarthy of the Guardian penned the following report. “How Fascism Works review: a vital read for a nation under Trump”

Excerpts:

“Yale professor Jason Stanley enters a growing literary field with a sober examination of an inflammatory political concept.”

“One of the insidious ironies of fascist politics, the philosopher Jason Stanley writes in his arresting new book, is that talk of fascism itself becomes more difficult because it is made to seem outlandish.”

JASON STANLEY Photo Arnold Gold Hearst Connecticut Media

“The assertion that immigrants are responsible for social ills that threaten to ruin a once-great nation, for example, might represent run-of-the-mill racism or xenophobia. His book’s subtitle is after all “The Politics of Us and Them”. But the idea is also drawn from a blueprint shared by the most robust fascistic regimes in recent history.”

“Does such an assertion, then, deserve to be called “fascist” or not? Is it responsible to use the word or is doing so inflammatory? Does diagnosing fascism help beat it?”

“The young presidency of Donald Trump has produced an impressive new popular literature on fascism, from Cass Sunstein’s Can it Happen Here? to Madeleine Albright’s Fascism: A Warning, to Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt’s How Democracies Die.”

Image result for photos holocaust museum

“Fascist politics – which evoke a mythic past, which rely on a sense of unreality and victimhood, and which use the cloak of “law and order” to hide corruption and attack scapegoats – can be used to flexible ends, writes Stanley, a professor of philosophy at Yale whose previous book was an analysis of propaganda.”

“What if a regime, for example, used a dismal us-versus-them divide in national politics to destroy faith in institutions capable of containing its power – elections, an independent judiciary, the public forum – thereby eliminating checks on its own self-enriching schemes?”

Image result for photos holocaust museum

“Publicizing false charges of corruption while engaging in corrupt practices is typical of fascist politics, and anti-corruption campaigns are frequently at the heart of fascist political movements,” Stanley writes, helpfully, without once mentioning “Drain the swamp”.

“What if the regime used the same divisive politics to build popular support for a tax system that preserves wealth for the most privileged while creating no new opportunities for everyone else? Would that warrant the term “fascism”?

“Since I am an American,” writes Stanley, “I must note that one goal appears to be to use fascist tactics hypocritically, waving the banner of nationalism in front of middle-and working-class white people in order to funnel the state’s spoils into the hands of oligarchs.”

Related image

“Underlying Stanley’s equanimous appraisal of the contemporary political moment is a weighty personal history. Both of his parents arrived in the US as Jewish refugees, his mother from eastern Poland and his father from Berlin, where his grandmother posed as a Nazi social worker to free Jewish prisoners from Sachsenhausen concentration camp.”

“My family background has saddled me with difficult emotional baggage,” he writes. “But it  crucially, prepared me to write this book.”

Image result for photos holocaust museum
New Holocaust Museum exhibit reminds of how U.S. rejected desperate refugees before | Trudy Rubin
“In all fascist mythic pasts,” he writes, “an extreme version of the patriarchal family reigns supreme, even just a few generations ago …

“In the rhetoric of extreme nationalists, such a glorious past has been lost by the humiliation brought on by globalism, liberal cosmopolitanism, and respect for ‘universal values’ such as equality. These values are supposed to have made the nation weak in the face of real and threatening challenges to the nation’s existence.”

“Stanley’s acute awareness of the power of the term, and the subtlety of his argument here, must contribute to the fact that he does not explicitly brand Trump a “fascist”.

“It is a misfortune of yet-unknown dimensions that he doesn’t have to.”

6 comments

  1. Gronda, let me repeat what I just typed to Jill. Dating back to the end of the 1990s according to former Republican strategist Steve Schmidt, the Koch Brothers looked at demographic projections and saw s huge problem for the GOP, the white majority will eventually become a plurality. As a result, a long term plan has been developed consisting of trying to woo new swaths of voting groups to restricting the voting rights of others to limiting the influx of non-white immigrants. This plan includes through ALEC a plan to gerrymander, take control of state houses, introduce voter restrictions, and control public universities where possible.

    But it goes beyond that with an eye toward calling a constitutional convention to go back to states appointing senators. Then you later on all the restrictions and white supremacist support that Trump has done. I would like to steer people to a word I have been thinking of lately as a long term goal of this effort – Apartheid. Tell me if you think this idea is off base. Keith

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Keith,

      Everything that has happened bolsters your thinking along the lines you’ve stated. Frankly I’m convinced that we are in the initial stages of fascism.

      And you are right. The tactics of suppressing the votes with the voter ID verification process had been a plan in the works dating back to the early days of ALEC. They could see that demographics were not favoring their ability to stay in power. They needed to come up with a plan.

      Hugs, Gronda

      Like

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