Sunday, February 27, 2005Red-State Fascism
I followed a link over from Billmon's excellent post, "Seeing the Light on the Right," and ended up at this interesting piece by Lew Rockwell. Rockwell, by the way, is a right-libertarian and "anti-leftist." I disagree with him profoundly on many things, but George W. Bush makes for some strange bedfellows. It's worth spending a few minutes on; you should go read it.
Paul Craig Roberts is right: "In the ranks of the new conservatives, however, I see and experience much hate. It comes to me in violently worded, ignorant and irrational emails from self-professed conservatives who literally worship George Bush. Even Christians have fallen into idolatry. There appears to be a large number of Americans who are prepared to kill anyone for George Bush." Again: "Like Brownshirts, the new conservatives take personally any criticism of their leader and his policies. To be a critic is to be an enemy."
In short, what we have alive in the US is an updated and Americanized fascism. Why fascist? Because it is not leftist in the sense of egalitarian or redistributionist. It has no real beef with business. It doesn't sympathize with the downtrodden, labor, or the poor. It is for all the core institutions of bourgeois life in America: family, faith, and flag. But it sees the state as the central organizing principle of society, views public institutions as the most essential means by which all these institutions are protected and advanced, and adores the head of state as a godlike figure who knows better than anyone else what the country and world's needs, and has a special connection to the Creator that permits him to discern the best means to bring it about.
Sane conservatives are not the enemy -- we disagree, but we can disagree respectfully and acknowledge that we're all working in the best interests of our society. The breed of conservatives who are in power now, though, are not sane -- they're dangerous. And those who follow them or fail to speak out against them are equally dangerous. Evil times aren't inevitable, but they are possible, and right now the scene is being set for some serious darkness to settle over America. |