What's a Fascist?

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Cueball Cueball's picture

Fascism is charachterized by authority being excercized by the personal politcal will of the persons in charge, not on the basis of adminstrative procedures, laws and set policies. Hence, we see the emergence of a supreme leader, such as Hitler of Mussolini, and the authority of their underlings is derived from his authority, which they usually wield in the same manner as their superiors, not upon the basis of laws, codes, procedures and policies of the administrative aparatus of government.

How the state comes into being is irrelevant to the nature of the fascist state when it is manifested.

Indeed, theie can be fascist acts inside the context of a non-fascist system. As I outlined above, Kenny's temporarily succesful attempt to bar Galloway, basically on his personal authority alone as minister of immigration, was a fascist act, even though, for the most part the immigration department is not a fascist institution.... yet.

Extrajudicial executions of persons on the authority of the president of the United States are fascist.

On the other hand, despite its authoritarian tendencies the Chinese government is not really fascist, since it operates on the basis of a fairly well defined legal code and adminstrative system with set policies, even though it is quite brutal -- it is more of an oligarchy of an elite class, managed by committees that have clearly defined powers and responsibilities.

Jacob Two-Two

I use fascist interchangably with authoritarian, and I think of it as a common, nearly ubiquitous, phenomenon. Everyone is a little bit fascist, in that we all have the urge to tell other people what to do, even when it's none of our business (as opposed to affairs that impact us directly). we all resist fascism to the extent that we resist this impulse in ourselves and in others. Yes, this is a broad definition, but it is also not a synonym for bad. It is a specific kind of bad.

Fidel

[URL=http://www.press.uchicago.edu/Misc/Chicago/511928.html]They Thought They Were Free[/URL] The Germans, 1933-45

Quote:
"What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could not understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it.

Foreign threats, fear of poverty without a strong and militant leader, and state secrecy.

Quote:
"...Pastor Niemöller spoke for the thousands and thousands of men like me when he spoke (too modestly of himself) and said that, when the Nazis attacked the Communists, he was a little uneasy, but, after all, he was not a Communist, and so he did nothing; and then they attacked the Socialists, and he was a little uneasier, but, still, he was not a Socialist, and he did nothing; and then the schools, the press, the Jews, and so on, and he was always uneasier, but still he did nothing. And then they attacked the Church, and he was a Churchman, and he did something—but then it was too late."

NDPP

"You can see how easy it was then, not to think about fundamental things. One had no time.."

this should be inscribed on the tombstone of 'democracy' in our time and place. Good stuff Fidel Resonant and premonitory. We're well and deeply into the same process and there's not much awareness of just how dire our straits...

Frmrsldr

Cueball wrote:

Who are scholars of the subject?

I certainly don't deny that the Tea Party has fascistic tendencies, but suggesting that having a bunch of wacko's running around on the streets saying regressive and stupid and jingoistic things is an absolute requirement for fascism is plainly absurd. Indeed, evolved fascism, when it has gotten beyond the point of siezing power does everything it can to repress those kinds of social movements and enroll those forces in state institutions (usually the police) so that it can control them.

Please find me a scholar who suggests that Mussolini or Hitler encouraged ranging mobs of morons to disturb the public order after the point at which they had served their usefulness had expired? I doubt you will find any because any scholar on Fascism who is worth their salt has studied closely how Hydreich and Himmler worked to centralize authority within the SS, and remove the grass roots leadership from their movement, once they had used the "Brown Shirts" to help them take over the state.

In the end your point seems to be somehow to diminish the threat of institutionalized fascism by asserting that fascism requires mobs of civilian supporters running around and terrorizing the civilian population and the opposition, when in fact the overt object of fascism is to suppress grass roots initiative, and institute supreme authority within a state run by bureaucratic fiat by a centralized gang whose word is law above the law based in legal procedure or rights for the many.

Those mobs are colourful surely, but they are not the be all and end all of fascism. I think you are allowing yourself to get distracted from the reality by focussing too much on the cosmetics.

Why do you insist then that institutionalized fascist authority can not arrive at supreme authority without populist vigilantes aiding the regression?

Krystal Nacht?

Bacchus

Good point Frmrsldr and accounts I've read of it show that it was entirely gov't setup. Sorry but Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Peron, Castro, Mugabe and even Franco are all good examples of Fascism. I suspect the only reason Franco didnt succumb to expansionism was that it took until after WWII for Spain to recover from the civil war and then the world was in no mood for a European expansionist.

Frmrsldr

Bacchus wrote:

I suspect the only reason Franco didnt succumb to expansionism was that it took until after WWII for Spain to recover from the civil war and then the world was in no mood for a European expansionist.

Franco did allow voluntary Spanish International Brigades to form and go fight in Russia during WWII.

6079_Smith_W

Actually the transition from democracy to fascist dictatorship  in Germany took only a few months. Once the Nazis won a near-majority in 1933  Hitler had Communist members of the Reichstag arrested, which gave the Nazis a majority.  They passed the Enabling Act that same month, and outlawed all other political parties that summer. Hitler already had absolute power even before he became head of state after Hindemburg's death the next year.

The Nazis did spend a long time preparing to take power, and their implementation of control after 1933 may have been a bit more gradual, but the actual political transformation into a fascist state was swift.

Part of the reason they needed time after 1933 was to consolidate support from financiers and control of the army - they were already well-placed to deal with the public.

(edit)

And Bacchus, I would not consider Robert Mugabe a fascist ruler because Zimbabwe has opposition parties, however authoritarian the government is, and however rigged the elections are.

Cueball Cueball's picture

Actually the primary reason the Hitler never pressed Franco to join his alliance was because Spain was an essential transportation point for raw material imports into occupied Europe. Were Spain in the war it would have been possible for the United Kingdom to create an almost total blockade of the Reich and its allies from essential imports from South America and the world.

It's also strange to remove economy from any definition of distinctions of government types, as if the control of the means of production is irrelevant to governance. Perhaps this impulse to ignore the relationship of the economy to the state has something to do with being indoctrinated into an ideological world view where the market is considered some kind of natural phenomena like the wind that blows over us but is beyond human intervention, and other petty distraction like the notion of state control.

Taking that view, I guess any authoritarian regieme is the same.

Most surprising is the ongoing assertion that fascism can be treated like an absolute form of government in the abstract, where a state is ether fascist or not as opposed to a view where fascism can exist, grow and even diminish inside different forms of state organization, and be encapsulated in "acts" that are fascist. In this way, as long as we can find exceptions to the rule, then we content ourselves that we are not "really there yet" and go back to sleep.

Everyone seems to want to believe that we absolutely need to have wackos wandering the streets in some kind of futuristic Clockwork Orange meets boys from Brazil fantasy in order to be "fascist", and that until the Wacko thugs are knocking at our doors there is no fascism in the state and Stephen Harper is a useless muppet. This even when Stephen can spend billions on superior policing systems, establish a national Integrated Security Unit that unifies all levels of policing from CSIS to the RCMP to the provincial police to local city police forces under a single command and then run a 3 day trial run of martial law in Canada's largest city, without the consent of parliament or democratic debate, cancel Parliament at will, arrest people on suspicion of seditious activities and hold them until they confess, or even detain them indefinitely on "security certificates" and hold bail hearings for dissidents under strict publication bans. 

With all that, who needs Brownshirts?

Don't worry about that, lets spend our time having a debate about the precise semantic definition of what constitutes fascism what constitutes authoritarianism, and how either of those compare to socialist totalitarianism. Pleasant dreams.

6079_Smith_W

@ Cueball #59

I don't think everyone who uses a stricter definition of the term makes those assumptions (though certainly there are some people who do). I have said as much upthread already.

I can think of a number of states which are guilty of crimes and abuses just as bad as any fascist state. For that reason I think the form of government sometimes IS incidental to the economy, to expansionism and imperialism and by saying that I do not mean that I think the economy is a natural force.

But anyway, goodnight.

NDPP

Cueball wrote:

Most surprising is the ongoing assertion that fascism is being treated like an absolute form of government in the abstract, where a state can be shown to be fascist or not, as opposed to a view where fascism can exist, grow and even diminish inside different forms of state organization, and be encapsulated in "acts" that are fascist. In this way, as long as we can find exceptions to the rule, then we content ourselves that we are not "really there yet" and go back to sleep.

Everyone seems to want to believe that we absolutely need to have wackos wandering the streets in some kind of futuristic Clockwork Orange meets boys from Brazil fantasy in order to be "fascist", and that until the Wacko thugs a knocking at our doors there is no fascism in the state and Stephen Harper is a useless muppet. This even when Stephen can spend billions on superior policing systems, establish a national Integrated Security Unit that bonds all levels of policing from CSIS to the RCMP to local city police forces, and then run a 3 day trial run of martial law in Canada's largest city, without the consent of parliament or democratic debate, cancel Parliament at will, arrest people on suspicion of seditious activities and hold them until they confess, or even detain them indefinitely on "security certificates" and hold bail hearings for dissident under strict publication bans. 

With all that, who needs Brownshirts?

Pleasant dreams.

NDPP

we're there alright. Bigtime.

complete with pleasant dreams...

support the fighters

Frmrsldr

Cuebal wrote:

Fascism is charachterized by authority being excercized by the personal political will of the persons in charge, not on the basis of administrative procedures, laws and set policies. Hence, we see the emergence of a supreme leader, such as Hitler of Mussolini, and the authority of their underlings is derived from his authority, which they usually wield in the same manner as their superiors, not upon the basis of laws, codes, procedures and policies of the administrative aparatus of government.

Cueball wrote:

Most surprising is the ongoing assertion that fascism can be treated like an absolute form of government in the abstract, where a state is ether fascist or not as opposed to a view where fascism can exist, grow and even diminish inside different forms of state organization, and be encapsulated in "acts" that are fascist. In this way, as long as we can find exceptions to the rule, then we content ourselves that we are not "really there yet" and go back to sleep.

Everyone seems to want to believe that we absolutely need to have wackos wandering the streets in some kind of futuristic Clockwork Orange meets boys from Brazil fantasy in order to be "fascist", and that until the Wacko thugs are knocking at our doors there is no fascism in the state and Stephen Harper is a useless muppet. This even when Stephen can spend billions on superior policing systems, establish a national Integrated Security Unit that unifies all levels of policing from CSIS to the RCMP to the provincial police to local city police forces under a single command and then run a 3 day trial run of martial law in Canada's largest city, without the consent of parliament or democratic debate, cancel Parliament at will, arrest people on suspicion of seditious activities and hold them until they confess, or even detain them indefinitely on "security certificates" and hold bail hearings for dissidents under strict publication bans. 

Don't worry about that, lets spend our time having a debate about the precise semantic definition of what constitutes fascism what constitutes authoritarianism, and how either of those compare to socialist totalitarianism. Pleasant dreams.

Don't these two points contradict?

You would agree that the Harperite Conservative administration is fascist or at least fascistic (has fascist tendencies)?

Fascism is as fascism does?

JKR

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Violent, single-party rule gets more to the heart of it, IMO.

Single-party rule is probably the most salient factor when identifying fascism.

The US primary system that entrenches two pro-capitalist parties seems to be a clever way of moving towards fascism but it goes against the fascistic belief that society is organically a single entity, a family with a strong father/patriarch.

Frmrsldr

JKR wrote:

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Violent, single-party rule gets more to the heart of it, IMO.

Single-party rule is probably the most salient factor when identifying fascism.

China, Cuba, Vietnam, Burma (Myanmar)?

Fidel

Yes, the two-party system is just an illusion of democracy. It's not even a fair shell game when the rich are buying both the government and so-called opposition parties and their so-called leaders. Why else are voter turnouts in the US and Canada as low as they are today? It's not because the millions not voting are able to observe real differences between the two. Whether conscious of it or not, millions don't vote because at some level they realize the result is always the same. Dollar democracies are not real democracies. What we have in North America is a variation on election rigging.

Sean in Ottawa

I totally agree with Fidel here-- and it is a great post. (since I am invisible to him there is no point in my directing the compliment to him but I guess for those who see me, I can acknowledge his contribution)

It is the same elites controlling everything and while there can be a choice in the colour of the party, the core intent, policies and masters are the same. The illusion of democracy does serve them enough purpose to continue to keep two parties in contention even if they are largely irrelevant to people's lives. Unfortunately, I think the vast majority of the so-called democracies operate in this way. Where is G.O. when you need him?

jrootham

If we do not describe our situation in terms that most people will understand and accept they will not be convinced of the truth of what we say.  That's why this matters.

In trying for democratic change Cueball's position is as about as useful as tits on a bull.

 

Sean in Ottawa

Agree with your first paragraph.

I have reread Cueball's posts here and don't get where you are coming from there. I don't agree with all he has said but fail to see it worthy of being singled out and I though t he made some worthwhile points.

George Victor

I thought that when folks started listing leftist authoritarian states as fascist that they were in need of a refreshing sleep.   Smile

6079_Smith_W

Frmrsldr wrote:

JKR wrote:

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Violent, single-party rule gets more to the heart of it, IMO.

Single-party rule is probably the most salient factor when identifying fascism.

China, Cuba, Vietnam, Burma (Myanmar)?

Certainly the first three have similarities in structure, because they are one-party states, but there is also anti-communism, corporatism, and the use of ongoing violence and terror as a means of controlling the people. In other words.... what GV said.

Not to make light of what I see as a pretty strict political question, but I think there is also an element of fashion to fascism. It's not there in all fascist states, but it certainly was in a number of them. In particular in fascist movements when they are starting out, there are uniforms and faux-military discipline, a leader cult, and a perverted sense of nationalism, sentimental culture, and mock-classical style.

That's my take on it, anyway.

There are a number of Wikipedia pages on fascism and neo-fascism that show variations on the theme.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism_as_an_international_phenomenon

So sorry, the teapartiers MIGHT be considered fascists if they wore better shoes and got the hounds and empties out of the back seat of their cars. Even though they are strongly behind the right wing cause, I think they are far too libertarian and anti-authority.

There were plenty of groups like the Teapartiers who helped push the French Revolution over the top. When the Committee for Public Safety took control of things plenty of them wound up getting the Republican razor along with the suspected counter-revolutionaries because they were too out of control.

 

 

George Victor

The fascist leader assumes a superiority that's positively Wagnerian, and may build Volks autos (there is quite a story in Wolfsburg, Germany, about how Adolph picked that town as home for his wagon) but would never talk about powet TO the people in some final governing structure.  It is the super figure of German philosophy and history that is missing in the Teaparty crowd, for sure.

I believe Steve shows a definite inclination toward such a belief, however.

George Victor

Wink

6079_Smith_W

...plus there is that whole U.S. tradition of radical local militias (which was certainly the birthplace of the Teaparty). I don't think Adolph or Benito would have been too happy with random mobs of grassroots grass-chewing conspiracy theorists who were armed to the teeth (and painting hitler moustaches on the leader they want to bring down).

http://www.adl.org/learn/ext_us/militia_m.asp?xpicked=4&item=19

(edit.. after your smiley, George)

I mean look at those guys. They don't even know how to hem their pants or stand in straight rows. Those are bags, not uniforms.

Fidel

George Victor wrote:

I thought that when folks started listing leftist authoritarian states as fascist that they were in need of a refreshing sleep.   Smile

That's right, George. Perhaps we will learn next that socialism was born of the French Revolution and specifically to oppose fascism. And lebensraum wasn't really Hitler's war of annihilation against Soviet communism, it was a tiff between fascists. A little miscommunication between fascists gone awry. Pragmatic centrists like Mackenzie King were merely appalled by it all when refusing sanctuary to certain ethnic refugees fleeing Europe at the time.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

jrootham wrote:

If we do not describe our situation in terms that most people will understand and accept they will not be convinced of the truth of what we say.  That's why this matters.

So it's all about couching our language so as to be ever-so-careful to never offend the fascists or their supporters?

Fidel

Ha! A fascist is a real serious a-hole. They practice hard at being a-holes. The usual training to be a fascist involves watching a hundred hours of The Three Stooges straight without a break. And if anyone laughs, they are poked in stomach with a cattle prod. That's how insidious the whole ism really is.

Cueball Cueball's picture

jrootham wrote:

If we do not describe our situation in terms that most people will understand and accept they will not be convinced of the truth of what we say.  That's why this matters.

In trying for democratic change Cueball's position is as about as useful as tits on a bull.

Woody Allen doesn't seem to have problem explaining things to people on terms they can understand.

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
So it's all about couching our language so as to be ever-so-careful to never offend the fascists or their supporters?

 

I think the idea is to not look to most folk like you have no control over your own imagination.

 

Think of the wackjobs that call Obama a "Socialist" or a "communist". That's pretty much how people look when they call Harper a "Fascist".

 

And could we have just one moment of stark, vulnerable honesty here? The term "fascist" isn't being chosen because it's more accurate than "conservative" or "authoritarian". Like "Nazi", it carries a powerful emotional load. It's inflammatory. That's why it's chosen, and attempts to justify it it after the fact are just rationalizations to preserve this inflammatory punch. Which is incidentally why anti-Obama crusaders choose "Socialist".

Cueball Cueball's picture

No. Lets be really honest here and admit that fascism is a particular form of government where the national ideal is expressed in the personal will of the a supreme dictator, who is above policy, prodedure and the law.

But lest diminish meaning and argument in favour of dumbing down the discourse and erase any need to look at history or truth or make any analysis at all abiove murmering sentiment that amounts to the intellectual equivalent of singing Kumbaya over and over again until we are so numbed by our repeated mantra that we convince ourselves that everything is just fine.

Fidel

[url=http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=10484]Stephen Harper: Bulking up Pentagon North[/url]

Bloated military budgets are really social programs. Like his US counterparts and their Nazi counterparts before them, they all believe in social programs for rich people. And they tend to want us to believe in foreign threats to our national security which don't exist.

If we ask Steven Harper's supporters why our troops are in Afghanistan, we get a range of answers, And they're all wrong as a general rule. It's Afghans themselves who have had to endure numerous military invasions of their country. And yet they have never retaliated directly against the home countries of the foreign invaders. And they probably never will.

 

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
But lest diminish meaning and argument in favour of dumbing down the discourse and erase any need to look at history or truth or make any analysis at all

 

It's not clear whether you're suggesting that trivial, exaggerative use of "fascist" and "fascism" constitutes dumbing down the discourse, or constitutes the "analysis" that would be the opposite.

Fidel

And then there are what's known as pragmatic Liberal centrists and even 'democrats.' They pretend to oppose fascists at the same end of the political spectrum they occupy themselves. And every so often they are forced to admit to the public things like:

Of course we were in bed with them at the time. And then they pulled a fast one on us. And now we're having this illegit war child that nobody wants. They lied to us. And no we can't afford social democracy, and let's not even mention reforming the electoral system.

Sean in Ottawa

Fidel posted an article I found particularly interesting especially as I was writing in another thread about the same issue. The article, however, makes the connection 90% of the way and then stops -- curiously.

Yes the article makes it clear that the government would rather spend on the military than on social programs and that social programs will get devastated over time by the commitment of this amount of money.

What the article does not do is ask a very important question. Which of the two effects of the initiative is the most important objective and which is the bonus?

If we look at the other policies of the government we might see a consistency that is alarming.

I have argued for a time that the prime spending directive of the government is to get rid of money in order to justify reductions down the road -- even force them on future governments. In other words the Cons are, I believe, looking to get rid of any money that could be either now or later put to some social purpose they do not believe in. People assume that they are choosing where to put the money but that is not their perspective of government. Their main concern is to reduce government, disable it from doing those things they do not want to do. Clement said recently over the Census (another act of Con Sabotage) that he is the most anti-establishment guy he knows and the CBC thought it was funny. The reality is he is telling the truth. These people do not have different spending priorities (as did Mulroney's Cons) these people are anti-government first and foremost. the Stimulus spending for example simply became an opportunity to flush money away -- anywhere-- so long as it did not go to anything the Cons did not believe in -- that is why very little went to public transit. Again people see the fact that little went to public transit as a lost competition with Con ridings instead of seeing that Con ridings were the vehicle to avoid putting it in public transit. It is important that people recognize that this government sees governance in the negative not what they want to do but what they seek to avoid doing is what matters. (Ask not what the government can do for you but what you can stop the government from doing is the mantra).

So looking back to military spending-- sure it is nice to have a big war machine but the real objective is to strip the government's ability to do all those nasty social spending things. The war machine is a side benefit. Seen this way, all the government's expenditures make sense and all are consistent. It is terrifying however to consider that this government's prime directive is to disable the government. This is the same as many people (including Fidel who posted the article) said before Harper was elected-- that the Cons intend to be more destructive to our national government than the BQ and that they intend to swing the wrecking ball as soon as they get in town. This is what we are seeing-- the actual spending is a distraction from the purpose. Now sure, many of the spending is what Cons like -- tax cuts, war machine, patronage to friends, spending for political advantage, but the purpose is to disable the government and all this spending has that purpose. It is no accident that the Cons are wrecking the fiscal capacity of the federal government-- that is in fact the prime purpose and suits their political ideology perfectly even if some of the spending targets appear not to.

Fidel

They want to starve the beast for sure. And they made sure to lower corporate taxes by tens of billions of dollars in the years before the anticipated crisis occurred by 2008. And what party of starve the beast conservatism would dream of raising anybody's taxes in a recession at that point? Not our Conservatives. And not those other conservatives to be sure.

And ordinary Canadians are not anybody. It's why they shove HST on us after lying to us that they would not raise taxes. Because that would be hypocritical of our neo Herbert Hooverians to even suggest it.

They claimed the economy was a-okay in October 2008. That was another lie. Canadians are lied to on a constant basis. And they know we know they are lying. They know why millions of Canadians aren't voting. They know full well.

In the end our stooges in Ottawa are just a mirror image of the imperial master setup in the US from where mundane and menial colonial administrative tasks are delegated to our puppets in Ottawa. They are mere tax collectors and politically impotent ones at that. Democracy in North America is an illusion.

Sean in Ottawa

Absolutely.

This is driven by an ideology that is so anti government that they want to destroy the ability for the government they hold to make decisions, to initiate anything or to function at all.

Fidel, I do want to clarify that this is not imperialism form the government of the United States -- who these same forces want to disable and subvert but from the boardrooms of the United States who want unfettered access to public capital and the fruit of the labour of working people.

In that sense the US government is their lapdog. How do you like the idea that our government is the lapdog of a lapdog when it is not being a direct lapdog to those interests directly.

Canadians, if they want to have any hope of dealing with this will need to recognize that the role of the Conservative party in government is indeed a mission of sabotage. They are exactly what Tony Clement told the media last week when he said he is the most anti-establishment person he knows. They are the government they seek to tear down.

We have had right wing governments before -- even ones that promoted the idea of "smaller government." But this is the first government in Canadian history that I believe has a primary mission of destruction of its own institution.

I do accept that the Liberals are a big part of the problem but they do not see themselves in the same mission-- they are the dupes, the idiots buying the propaganda while still thinking they are somehow saving the government from ruin. The Cons, I think have no illusion about their desire to damage government so seriously that no future electoral choice can fix itself for a generation. The assumption is they will be back in power before the government can fix itself and redo the tax. This means, if they succeed, that no election would be relevant and no future government would be relevant. This government is in effect perpetrating a coup on all future governments, stripping them of their sovereign decision-making power.

Cueball Cueball's picture

Snert wrote:

Quote:
But lest diminish meaning and argument in favour of dumbing down the discourse and erase any need to look at history or truth or make any analysis at all

 

It's not clear whether you're suggesting that trivial, exaggerative use of "fascist" and "fascism" constitutes dumbing down the discourse, or constitutes the "analysis" that would be the opposite.

I personally think that unleashing thousands of masked police officers (some armed with MP5 sub machine guns) and allowing them to search and sieze personal property without probable cause, and arresting people for failure to identify themselves based on non-existent laws and throwing a thousand peaceful protestors in jail for no reason is a pretty fascist thing to do.

What do you think? On a scale of 1 to 10 how fascist is that?

Fidel

I recommend telling those who ask that you're with the NSC. It throws them off and makes them think you're with either CSIS or the CIA.

Sean in Ottawa

Cueball -- put me down for an 8 (if they executed them it would be a 10).

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Cueball -- put me down for an 8 (if they executed them it would be a 10).

Exactly what I was typing:

An 8. If they'd killed a few, a 9. If they killed indiscriminantly, 10.

Fidel

I think it's a matter of closeness. How far away from the victim are they able to pull the trigger? The more psychotic ones would gladly shoot us at point blank - while able to see into the eyes of their victims. Apparently it's not as easy as it sounds. They have to be pretty psychotic to follow orders like that. And then to delegate mass murder as an administrative task  is another level of psychosis altogether. Architects and planners are somewhere near the top of the fascist hierarchy.

George Victor

Sean: "This government is in effect perpetrating a coup on all future governments, stripping them of their sovereign decision-making power."

 

Right on, Sean.

 

This does not smack of fascism, just Libertarian, 19th century liberal economics (neo-liberal as it were). But Steve certainly seems to be playing the Straussian bag of tricks to get there, including using the "noble lie"a... just like the benevolent king should - the end justifying the means.

 

 

thorin_bane

Chalk it up to 8 for that incident. but it is creeping higher in all facets of canadian society. And as mentioned they are not only crippling the institution, they are making people resent it. By being the worst government it works twice. One to destroy the ability to govern and again by making even those that trust government to distrust government.

There will now be doubt on bureaucrats with regards to how the government forced the opening of health files the distrust they sow WTR to census, statscan in general, the police, etc. A healthy skepticism is fine but total distrust make people want to elect the very people who do the bad things while in power(supposed smaller government) while those that want to use government for the people are untrusted.

Win Win for cons.

6079_Smith_W

Cueball wrote:

What do you think? On a scale of 1 to 10 how fascist is that?

I think we might hum and haw about it because I assume you're referring to an oppressive act that took place this past summer here in Canada.

If we were to use a similar example that took place in a communist country there is no way you could call it fascist.

So taken in isolation I wouldn't call it fascist at all. Oppressive, authoritarian, abusive, illegal... yes. But I wouldn't personally call it fascist. It gets back to the central point that the word has been used so loosely that people have forgotten what it actually means.

(edit)

We could even call it a movement toward a police state, but even that is not the same as fascism.

 

jrootham

To win this fight we must appeal to people who are currently ambivalent.

Is it your contention that using the word fascist will make them more likely to support objections to the practices of the police?

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

So what words are you suggesting to move people that are currently ambivalent? 

I think calling TO an unfortunate incident will light the passion of the people to oppose this obvious descent into a police state.  Or maybe we can say that the government overreacted in its deployment of the peace officers and we can't let this happen again, that should really fire up the electorate. 

This is a petty little colony in a global imperial state, who cares whether you call it fascist or something else. I agree that Harper is no Hitler much closer to a Quisling IMO.  

 

Fidel

Stephen "Steve" Quisling it is then. Canadians would replace him if they could figure out what he does.

jrootham

I think strong words are certainly appropriate.  I just think they should be unequivocally correct.

Illegal, unconstitutional, repressive, authoritarian, incompetent, police state.  Those are the words that come to my mind.  

Anybody else have suggestions?

 

 

Fidel

Puppet, collaborationist, absolutist, traitor, sell out, autocrat, 22% tin pot, colonial administrator, stooge, toady, lap dog etc are all equivalents for Steve

George Victor

I still think that comprador best describes Steve.

 

Fidel

Comprador it is then. I still like Quisling though. Comprador for now though, George. We could make it a weekly thing. It's jrootham's turn next week. Steve Comprador. Or is it just comprador?

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