[LMB] OT: Labels
beatrice_otter at zoho.com
Wed Oct 10 16:27:06 BST 2018
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
From: WILLIAM A WENRICHAlthough this relates to politics, it is not in any way strictly US politics.
There is a trend that has been around a long time that seems to be getting more prevalent to use the syllogism, I don’t like what the Fascists say and I don’t like what you say therefore you are a Fascist.
Fascists are described as Right Wing and compared to the Communists who first called them that they are. However, everyone to the right of the Communists are not Fascists. Economically, the main difference between the Communists and the Fascists was that the Communists wanted the state to own all of the means of production and the Fascists wanted to control all the means of production. Both are totalitarian states.
Left and right are incomplete descriptors of political positions. Pournelle’s two axis is better but I think you need more than two axis.
Economic ideas are only a tiny part of the classical suite of fascist beliefs and actions, and not a very main point. For fascists, economic policies flow from the rest of the fascist ideology, rather than (as in, say, communism or capitalism) being the foundation on which everything else rests. So using economics as a measure of what is or is not fascist is not useful or relevant. If you look at textbook definitions of fascism, not all of them even mention economics. (Authoritarianism, bigotry, and preference for aesthetic/propaganda over reality are key components.)
There are LOTS of people and groups in Europe and America that follow every single characteristic of fascism. I have seen a ton of examples where people have pointed this out step by step. And the objections are never that they got anything wrong. In one case, a political scientist interviewed someone who he'd identified as a fascist who had objected to it. They went through every single characteristic from a textbook, and the interviewee believed and advocated for every single one of them. He was proud of his beliefs, but furious at the name. It was an aesthetic thing. Basically, "fascists are evil. I am a patriot and my group is going to SAVE THE NATION. Therefore, we are not fascists even if every belief and plan comes right out of textbook definitions of fascism, and anyone who calls us fascists is EVIL."
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