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  1. #1
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    defining fascism

    The word "fascist" is tossed around here pretty regularly. I've been called one a time or two, as have others I generally agree with. Since there's not much agreement on what the words "liberal" and "conservative" mean, the word fascist seems like a vague, general term that doesn't have much meaning to many here. I think it's been cultivated as a put down word for traditional conservatives. Here's the Webster's definition of the word;

    FASCISM; A political philosophy, movement, or regime that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.

    http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/m...i-fascism.html

    http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/au...mussolini.html

    From his quotes, Mussolini seemed to think fascism was the opposite of socialism. It's also clear that fascism is not about peace, yet Mussolini said that men are "tired of liberty". When Jefferson said "......the tree of liberty must be nourished from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants..." he seems to advocate both liberty and war. Does that make him a fascist?

    http://www.secularhumanism.org/libra...britt_23_2.htm

    This seems to be a modern day liberal trying to redefine fascism so that it can be applied to many of today's conservatives. In part;


    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.
    If that's fascism, what is it if it's rewritten with only a few word changes?

    The supremacy of environmentalism / safety. Ruling elites identified closely with the EPA and NHTSA. and the trial lawyers that support it. A disproportionate share of natural resources allocated to it, even though domestic needs (tax relief) is acute. Safety and cleanliness are seen as an ever increasing problem, and are used whenever possible to redistribute wealth, punish capitalism, and increase power and prestige of the ruling elite.

    If Britt's paragraph is fascism, isn't much of what is advocated by today's liberals / Democrats also fascism? Are not most of the domestic, big government programs advocated by today's Democrats not "autocratic"??
    Why is it that our children can't read a Bible in school, but they can in prison?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc9000
    The word "fascist" is tossed around here pretty regularly. I've been called one a time or two, as have others I generally agree with. Since there's not much agreement on what the words "liberal" and "conservative" mean, the word fascist seems like a vague, general term that doesn't have much meaning to many here. I think it's been cultivated as a put down word for traditional conservatives.
    /
    An accusation of fascism in a discussion forum like this is hardly ever meant to be understood in its full technical totalitarian sense. Almost always, it's just an ideological smear word that short cuts the requirement to provide a reasoned refutation of whatever argument the "fascist" is advancing.

  3. #3
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    FASCISM; A political philosophy, movement, or regime that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.
    Sound like anybody you know?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Ryan
    An accusation of fascism in a discussion forum like this is hardly ever meant to be understood in its full technical totalitarian sense. Almost always, it's just an ideological smear word that short cuts the requirement to provide a reasoned refutation of whatever argument the "fascist" is advancing.
    I disagree. I have called some people here fascists, and I damn well meant it. Generally I call them "neo-fascists" when they do not exactly fit the mold fo a regular fascist as Mussolini defined it (the only truly fascist goverment ever was that of mussolini).

    Fascism is gaining a serious foothold here in the US. I think to a large degree it is the result of people feealing subtly threatened by the new order of things.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen. —Samuel Adams

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    Quote Originally Posted by daewoo
    I disagree. I have called some people here fascists, and I damn well meant it. Generally I call them "neo-fascists" when they do not exactly fit the mold fo a regular fascist as Mussolini defined it (the only truly fascist goverment ever was that of mussolini).
    ...and just think what happened to Mussolini!


    Fascism is gaining a serious foothold here in the US. I think to a large degree it is the result of people feeling subtly threatened by the new order of things.
    What are the symptoms of this?
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by daewoo
    I disagree. I have called some people here fascists, and I damn well meant it. Generally I call them "neo-fascists" when they do not exactly fit the mold fo a regular fascist as Mussolini defined it (the only truly fascist goverment ever was that of mussolini).

    Fascism is gaining a serious foothold here in the US. I think to a large degree it is the result of people feealing subtly threatened by the new order of things.
    I believe I know who you might have in mind. However, I read most of the stuff in the Politics forum, and I'm not persuaded (with the possible exception of Siegfriedson) that anyone who posts there regularly would support the full authoritarian apparatus of a fascist society - complete with a "charismatic" dictator and corporate state in America.

    My grouse concerning the use of the word "fascist" is that it's often used to denounce rather than to criticise a conservative point of view.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Ryan
    I believe I know who you might have in mind. However, I read most of the stuff in the Politics forum, and I'm not persuaded (with the possible exception of Siegfriedson) that anyone who posts there regularly would support the full authoritarian apparatus of a fascist society - complete with a "charismatic" dictator and corporate state in America.
    Mussolini argued that you did not need a single charismatic dictator. An oligarchy was more than sufficient to operate a fascist nation. This was essentially his plan for italy following his death. He planned to apoint a small oligarchy to rule the country. The important thing was not, to his way of thinking, that a single dictator ruled the nation, but that the rulers of the nations all shared a common (fascist) outlook.

    You really don't think that there are those here would support an authoritarian regime? Look how willing they are to condemn accused terrorists or muslims in general enemies of the state? What is really the difference between the patriot act, which allows "terrorist suspects" (including US citizens) to be secretly arrested and held without access to the courts or an attorney, and the "state protection" law in italy that allowed the governetn to round up "enemies of the state" and wisk them off into the night wihtout trial or counsel? All it takes to get somebody classified as a "terrorist suspect" is a memo from the justice department, which is classified the minute it is written, so nobody ever knows about it. I am not seeing the difference betweent eh two, and frankly once the citizen looses the right to access the courts, it is all over.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen. —Samuel Adams

  8. #8
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    I essentially view as Fascist any "socialism of the right", any suggestion that an omnipotent state should be used, rather than for egalitarian purposes, to facilitate the maintenance of the existing social order, or a nationalist program. Thus cries of "True American", and demands drug users, muslims, those who speak out be suppressed I view as essentially fascist. Demands that individuals subordinate themself to the President, and cries for National Greatness programs are essentially fascist.

    This isn't a way of denouncing a "conservative" point of view in general, it is a way of pointing out defitinitively those who seek to maintain a conservative social order by totalitarian means, and what that really means.

    It is no different from calling someone who wants an egalitarian social order and wants to persecute, kill, or maim, the businessmen and intellectuals to get it, demanding everyone subordinate themselves to the Greater Good of the Collective, a Communist.

    As if to confirm the accuracy of the assessment of certain forum members as fascist, we have this gem appearing just now;
    "Why It’s Time to Deport Liberals"

    You will note the reactionary demands for state power to be used oppressively "they have only become more obnoxious in their efforts to dismantle America.", the fascist ideology is not revolutionary, it seeks to maintain an existing or prior order by violent means.

    You will note the extreme hypocrisy emanating from such views, at once decrying the "government controls" of the left, and demanding sexual deviants, the content of art and everything people do or say be controlled by a government of his choice. This is not the "conservative" of the 1940s, this is a fascist viewpoint which seeks to subsitute the "government control" of the "liberals" with a greater government control of its own.
    Last edited by Symbiote; 06-13-2005 at 10:28 AM.
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  9. #9
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    What Is Facism?
    by: Roger D. Griffin, B.A., Ph.D. Professor, Department of History, Oxford Brookes University.



    Fascism, modern political ideology that seeks to regenerate the social, economic, and cultural life of a country by basing it on a heightened sense of national belonging or ethnic identity. Fascism rejects liberal ideas such as freedom and individual rights, and often presses for the destruction of elections, legislatures, and other elements of democracy. Despite the idealistic goals of fascism, attempts to build fascist societies have led to wars and persecutions that caused millions of deaths. As a result, fascism is strongly associated with right-wing fanaticism, racism, totalitarianism, and violence.
    Like I said, sound familiar?

  10. #10
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    America is not an omnipotent state: even Nazi Germany was not all powerful.

    If there are demands for political views, social preferences, or works of art to be suppressed in America - nobody takes much notice of them: the media is free to identify and to criticise totalitarian tendencies. Opposition is not silenced.

    Fascist ideology is revolutionary: it seeks to impose, by force, an authoritarian regime on a liberal society (the "classic" instance, of course, is the destruction of democracy by Hitler in 1933).

    The forum members here are not representative of American society, and the extremism of a few of them does not constitute sufficient cause for alarmist claims about a "fascist" USA.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc9000 View Post
    The word "fascist" is tossed around here pretty regularly. I've been called one a time or two, as have others I generally agree with. Since there's not much agreement on what the words "liberal" and "conservative" mean, the word fascist seems like a vague, general term that doesn't have much meaning to many here. I think it's been cultivated as a put down word for traditional conservatives. Here's the Webster's definition of the word;

    FASCISM; A political philosophy, movement, or regime that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.

    http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/m...i-fascism.html

    Benito Mussolini Quotes - BrainyQuote

    From his quotes, Mussolini seemed to think fascism was the opposite of socialism. It's also clear that fascism is not about peace, yet Mussolini said that men are "tired of liberty". When Jefferson said "......the tree of liberty must be nourished from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants..." he seems to advocate both liberty and war. Does that make him a fascist?

    Fascism Anyone?

    This seems to be a modern day liberal trying to redefine fascism so that it can be applied to many of today's conservatives. In part;




    If that's fascism, what is it if it's rewritten with only a few word changes?

    The supremacy of environmentalism / safety. Ruling elites identified closely with the EPA and NHTSA. and the trial lawyers that support it. A disproportionate share of natural resources allocated to it, even though domestic needs (tax relief) is acute. Safety and cleanliness are seen as an ever increasing problem, and are used whenever possible to redistribute wealth, punish capitalism, and increase power and prestige of the ruling elite.

    If Britt's paragraph is fascism, isn't much of what is advocated by today's liberals / Democrats also fascism? Are not most of the domestic, big government programs advocated by today's Democrats not "autocratic"??

    If you look below page 10 in this link, you will find the best definition of the word

    Fascism - David Downing - Google Books


    A fascist government “bundles” the state, the corporate and the military under one purpose, led by a dictator. Mussolini invented the new translation, but Adolph Hitler was already running a fascist government. Now, it has been argued that Stalin ran such a government, however communism was an enemy of fascism, as was socialism. The National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP), employed the word “socialism” because in Europe during the 20s and 30’s socialism became a very popular buzzword, and communists were active in eastern Germany. Once Hitler took over the word, he maneuvered the country under him. Communists were placed in the first concentration camp at Dachau in 1933 and the rest of course is history.

    The reason that the US right-wing gets associated with the word ‘fascist’ is simply because the right-wing domestic and foreign policy, coupled by people like the Koch Brothers (who’s father founded the John Birch Society), along with the use of the US military as ground softening for corporate expansion, fits that very definition. Please note: I am not including the word Nazi as an epithet for the right in this country.

    The right is however quite nationalistic; the first qualification under fascism, very militaristic; the second qualification, and very corporate minded. They are juggernauts as well which sews up the package. If one studies the rise of fascism, one finds this very same recipe cooked up into a totalitarian war machine. It’s the behavior, thinking and world view of the right-wing that consistently brings them under this umbrella.

    So fascism as a practice has actually been going on for a long time; Rome for instance . . . But it was Mussolini who put a word to it.
    Last edited by jet57; 02-18-2012 at 06:51 PM.
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