Re: [sixties-l] Re: heil freedom

From: Carrol Cox (
Date: Wed Feb 20 2002 - 20:01:54 EST

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    Jochen Rohwer wrote:

    > thanks for your reply. I already thought that my
    > claim of a facist takeover goes a bit too far.
    > There should have been a question mark behind it.
    > But i guess you figured out, what was meant. [clip]

    Discussions over fascism in the United States tend, I think, usually to
    overlook two matters. First, they often implicitly overlook the vicious
    repressive powers of bourgeois democracy, even at its best. At the same
    time that the U.S. was pursuing a burn all, rob all, kill all policy in
    the Philippines (thus inspiring Twain's "To the Person Sitting in
    Darkness," at home lynching in the south proceeded apace (and were
    treated as merely a minor southern custom in the NYT -- and also
    inspiring Twain's "The United States of Lyncherdom"). That is, the U.S.,
    with its democracy functioning quite well, was pusuing policies at home
    and abroad that, as policy, did not differ so terribly much from fascist
    policy. Who needs fascism when under a liberal president we can end
    welfare as we knew it and pass the Effective Death Penalty and
    Anti-Terrorism Act.

    But secondly, and this is important in the present context, we should
    not confuse the species, fascism/nazism with the genus despotic rule.
    All fascist rules are dictatorshiups, but not all dictatorships are
    fascist. So there is a real danger in applying the label "fascist" to
    the u.s. at this time: real fascism (which always remains a possibility)
    requires one kind of opposition. Other, perhaps yet uninvented, types of
    authoritarian state might call for quite different strategies of
    resistence. And the repressive power of the state calls for resistence
    regardless of what we call it.

    What is happening now in the United States is vicious and ominous. I
    don't think it can be accurately called fascism or even the threat of
    fascism -- but it might be something just as vicious, but with a
    different internal dynamic and external strategy.


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