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Monday 27 July 2015

Is Donald Trump a Fascist?

"Think of Bane, the would-be dictator of Gotham in Batman, who promises an end to democratic corruption, weakness and loss of civic pride. He sought a revolution against the prevailing elites in order to gain total power unto himself."

[Crossposted from Little Green Footballs]

I posed this question to a few of my American friends because I had noticed that no one seemed to be asking it.

It seemed like it was verboten to even consider. Libertarian author Jeffrey A Tucker has thought it through though and his essay on the question got republished by Newsweek.
[Trump’s] speech was like an interwar séance of once-powerful dictators who inspired multitudes, drove countries into the ground and died grim deaths. I kept thinking of books like John T. Flynn’s As We Go Marching, especially Chapter Ten that so brilliantly chronicles a form of statism that swept Europe in the 1930s. It grew up in the firmament of failed economies, cultural upheaval and social instability, and it lives by stoking the fires of bourgeois resentment.

Since World War II, the ideology he represents has usually lived in dark corners, and we don’t even have a name for it anymore. The right name, the correct name, the historically accurate name, is fascism. I don’t use that word as an insult only. It is accurate.

Though hardly anyone talks about it today, we really should. It is still real. It exists. It is distinct. It is not going away. Trump has tapped into it, absorbing unto his own political ambitions every conceivable resentment (race, class, sex, religion, economic) and promising a new order of things under his mighty hand.

You would have to be hopelessly ignorant of modern history not to see the outlines and where they end up. I want to laugh about what he said, like reading a comic-book version of Franco, Mussolini or Hitler. And truly I did laugh as he denounced the existence of tech support in India that serves American companies (“how can it be cheaper to call people there than here?”—as if he still thinks that long-distance charges apply). But in politics, history shows that laughter can turn too quickly to tears.
More: Is Donald Trump a Fascist?

Writing for Free Press Houston Nick Cooper notes that:
Right-wing, anti-immigrant fear mongering is quite familiar around the world, from parties like France’s National Front, The U.K. Independence Party, Greece’s Golden Dawn, Italy’s Northern League, and Germany’s National Democratic Party. These European parties are associated with neo-nazism and other forms of fascism, whereas Donald Trump is perceived by many Americans as a blow-hard who says some wacky things.
And, says, Cooper:
The historical precedents are being ignored. These two myths are familiar from fascist propaganda: a dead national dream can be revived by a heroic white male leader darker-skinned outsiders are coming to rape the women
Could be why a European like me looks at Trump and thinks 'Fascist'!  

H/T Steve M

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