When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross. — Sinclair Lewis, It Can’t Happen Here. (1935)
Regular readers of this column know that I have been shouting from the hills about the dangers of fascism running rampant in this country almost exclusively from the Teatards and the American Taliban. This combination of nationalism combined with fervent religious clap trap is one of the most dangerous political movements to ever rear its ugly head in the history of America and it needs to be stopped. The alternative is that one of these deranged lunatics might actually get into a position of real power and then we are all screwed. Regardless, it may already be too late to stop the spread of fascism across this once great nation.
Political scientist Lawerence W. Britt published 14 signs that a government might be fascist which sounds like a bad Jeff Foxworthy joke: "If you stomp on innocent protesters while screaming USA, USA, you just might be a fascist." Using the historic models of Nazi Germany and Mussolini's Italy, as well as Franco's Spain, Pinochet's Chile, Salazar's Portugal, Papadopolous"s Greece and Suharto's Indonesia he found 14 characteristics that were common in all. The sad part is that we are seeing these same 14 traits in our own government now. Here they are:
1. Powerful and continuing expressions of nationalism. From the prominent
displays of flags and bunting to the ubiquitous lapel pins, the fervor to show
patriotic nationalism, both on the part of the regime itself and of citizens
caught up in its frenzy, was always obvious. Catchy slogans, pride in the
military, and demands for unity were common themes in expressing this
nationalism. It was usually coupled with a suspicion of things foreign that
often bordered on xenophobia.
Flag pins, waving flags and other patriotic signs are hardly a sign of fascism, except when that nationalism crosses that fine line and borders on hysteria. The fact that we are becoming less and less tolerant of other races, especially that of Muslims and Mexicans, spell dangerous territory and could lead patriotism into lynch mobs.
2.Disdain for the importance of human rights. The regimes themselves viewed human
rights as of little value and a hindrance to realizing the objectives of the
ruling elite. Through clever use of propaganda, the population was brought to
accept these human rights abuses by marginalizing, even demonizing, those being
targeted. When abuse was egregious, the tactic was to use secrecy, denial, and
Gitmo abuses, the NDAA law and other executive orders now give the President the power of a king. Remember when waterboarding was being debated? And free speech seems to have gone the way of the dodo with Occupy forces under near constant assault from government stormtroopers. Years ago, these abuses would never have been tolerated, but the new "War on Terror" has made people more lenient to giving up their rights, which is never a good idea.
3. Identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause. The most significant
common thread among these regimes was the use of scapegoating as a means to
divert the people’s attention from other problems, to shift blame for failures,
and to channel frustration in controlled directions. The methods of
choice—relentless propaganda and disinformation—were usually effective. Often
the regimes would incite ‘spontaneous’ acts against the target scapegoats,
usually communists, socialists, liberals, Jews, ethnic and racial minorities,
traditional national enemies, members of other religions, secularists,
homosexuals, and ‘terrorists.’ Active opponents of these regimes were inevitably
labeled as terrorists and dealt with accordingly.
The ultimate scapegoat would be American Muslims who, if things actually deteriorate in the Middle East, may be seeing what the Jews saw in Germany and Japanese saw in the US. Those huge detention centers we've been building are going to get used at some point and I think anyone of Middle Eastern decent or practicing Muslim may be incarcerated quick. But that same tactic is being used against us by the powers that be to divide us all. As the rich have everything, it is in their best interest to keep the masses fighting among themselves: Black vs white, left vs right, anti abortion vs pro choice, the list goes on and on. Amidst all the name calling, no real solutions are even debated. Sound familiar?
4.The supremacy of the military/avid militarism. Ruling elites always identified
closely with the military and the industrial infrastructure that supported it. A
disproportionate share of national resources was allocated to the military, even
when domestic needs were acute. The military was seen as an expression of
nationalism, and was used whenever possible to assert national goals, intimidate
other nations, and increase the power and prestige of the ruling elite.
We spend more money on defense than pretty much all other services combined. Nuff said.
5.Rampant sexism. Beyond the simple fact that the political elite and the national
culture were male-dominated, these regimes inevitably viewed women as
second-class citizens. They were adamantly anti-abortion and also homophobic.
These attitudes were usually codified in Draconian laws that enjoyed strong
support by the orthodox religion of the country, thus lending the regime cover
for its abuses.
See Rush Limbaugh or any GOP candidate for clarification.
6. A controlled mass media. Under some of the regimes, the mass media were under
strict direct control and could be relied upon never to stray from the party
line. Other regimes exercised more subtle power to ensure media orthodoxy.
Methods included the control of licensing and access to resources, economic
pressure, appeals to patriotism, and implied threats. The leaders of the mass
media were often politically compatible with the power elite. The result was
usually success in keeping the general public unaware of the regimes’ excesses.
Fox News anyone? In 1983, fifty corporations ran the media services in the US. Today, it's six. And not one of them is telling you the truth about a lot of what is really going on in today's world. Goebbels's would have been proud, and surprise, surprise, Fox News was once part of Nazi Germany's propaganda machine back in the forties. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
7.Obsession with national security. Inevitably, a national security apparatus was
under direct control of the ruling elite. It was usually an instrument of
oppression, operating in secret and beyond any constraints. Its actions were
justified under the rubric of protecting ‘national security,’ and questioning
its activities was portrayed as unpatriotic or even treasonous.
Hello, TSA. Obama has also been given powers beyond which any president has ever had, including the right to jail anyone indefinitely, assassinate US citizens with no oversight and to seize private property for any reason, all for "national security."
8.Religion and ruling elite tied together. Unlike communist regimes, the fascist
and protofascist regimes were never proclaimed as godless by their opponents. In
fact, most of the regimes attached themselves to the predominant religion of the
country and chose to portray themselves as militant defenders of that religion.
The fact that the ruling elite’s behavior was incompatible with the precepts of
the religion was generally swept under the rug. Propaganda kept up the illusion
that the ruling elites were defenders of the faith and opponents of the
‘godless.’ A perception was manufactured that opposing the power elite was
tantamount to an attack on religion.
This describes every political candidate out there, democrat and Republican alike. They scream from the rooftops how pious they are, then go home to cheat on their wives, steal from the constituents and basically behave like the demons they are. Don't forget that the devil can quote scripture when it suits his needs.
9.Power of corporations protected. Although the personal life of ordinary citizens
was under strict control, the ability of large corporations to operate in
relative freedom was not compromised. The ruling elite saw the corporate
structure as a way to not only ensure military production (in developed states),
but also as an additional means of social control. Members of the economic elite
were often pampered by the political elite to ensure a continued mutuality of
interests, especially in the repression of ‘have-not’ citizens.
The Citizen United ruling by the Supreme Court has given corporations carde blanche to screw us blue. Plus how many bankers were arrested over the near total collapse of the world economy? Oh that's right, zero. Add the fact that the American people haven't gotten a raise in forty years is truly telling.
10.Power of labor suppressed or eliminated. Since organized labor was seen as the
one power center that could challenge the political hegemony of the ruling elite
and its corporate allies, it was inevitably crushed or made powerless. The poor
formed an underclass, viewed with suspicion or outright contempt. Under some
regimes, being poor was considered akin to a vice.
Unions are being dismantled across the country, with the help of the Teatards and the Amercian Taliban, or the neo-fascists as they should be called. This is the reason we haven't gotten a raise in forty years because we have no collective bargaining power, just a ruling elite working us harder and harder for less money.
11.Disdain and suppression of intellectuals and the arts. Intellectuals and the
inherent freedom of ideas and expression associated with them were anathema to
these regimes. Intellectual and academic freedom were considered subversive to
national security and the patriotic ideal. Universities were tightly controlled;
politically unreliable faculty harassed or eliminated. Unorthodox ideas or
expressions of dissent were strongly attacked, silenced, or crushed. To these
regimes, art and literature should serve the national interest or they had no
right to exist.
The intellectual"elites" are under constant barrage from the right about leftist teachings like evolution or climate change. The fact that neither of these are leftist show the disdain for knowledge. It's why I don't like organized religion as it makes you stupid. Evolution is fact and I, and every scientist on Earth, can prove it. There is more than ample evidence, such as the fusion of chromosome 2 or proto fish with feet, that show evolution is fact and the idea that we are still debating this makes me sick. Bush Jr. was caught cherry picking scientific evidence for political reasons and so is the Church and the Teatards. Ending funding for things like NPR have reached fever pitch on the right while Limbaugh is still a protected voice. Sad.
12. Obsession with crime and punishment. Most of these regimes maintained Draconian
systems of criminal justice with huge prison populations. The police were often
glorified and had almost unchecked power, leading to rampant abuse. 'Normal' and
political crime were often merged into trumped-up criminal charges and sometimes
used against political opponents of the regime. Fear, and hatred, of criminals
or 'traitors' was often promoted among the population as an excuse for more
The war on drugs has been an abject failure yet here we are forty years later still fighting it with zero effect. The politicians refuse to accept this as lobbyists want the gravy train to continue, even though we have no use for organizations like the DEA and ATF, both of which should be immediately dismantled. There are now more people in jail than during Stalin's gulag reign. It is now a felony to protest near anyone with Secret Service protection, even if you don't know about it. The Teatards and the American Taliban are all for this. Figures.
13. Rampant cronyism and corruption. Those in business circles and close to the
power elite often used their position to enrich themselves. This corruption
worked both ways; the power elite would receive financial gifts and property
from the economic elite, who in turn would gain the benefit of government
favoritism. Members of the power elite were in a position to obtain vast wealth
from other sources as well: for example, by stealing national resources. With
the national security apparatus under control and the media muzzled, this
corruption was largely unconstrained and not well understood by the general
How bankers got arrested again for the 2008 debacle? You want to know why gas prices are so high as well? It's because of a law passed in 1999, fuck you very much Bill Clinton, that led to speculations on the newly formed derivative markets, that have screwed us ovedr ever since. It's not drilling but demand on a global basis and speculators that have driven up prices so shut the hell up about drill baby drill. It's not going to work.
14.Fraudulent elections. Elections in the form of plebiscites or public opinion
polls were usually bogus. When actual elections with candidates were held, they
would usually be perverted by the power elite to get the desired result. Common
methods included maintaining control of the election machinery, intimidating and
disenfranchising opposition voters, destroying or disallowing legal votes, and,
as a last resort, turning to a judiciary beholden to the power elite.
2000 and 2004 elections were both suspect, with the Supreme Court electing our president for us and in the latter actually saw people jailed in Ohio for fraud, enough that the whole election became suspect, not that the MSM reported any of it.
So there you go. Fourteen fascist ideals and America has them all. Still feel like we're in the land of the free, home of the brave, because we aren't and haven't been for some time. It inevitable that some douche will become President one day and really show us how fascism works. I doubt Obama would but that guy,but the next, especially if it's someone like Gingrich or Santorum, it would be hell on earth.