The Widdershins


Posted on: April 25, 2011

Fascism ( /ˈfæʃɪzəm/) is a radical, authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists advocate the creation of a totalitarian single-party state that seeks the mass mobilization and mechanization of a nation and the creation of an ideal “new man” to form a governing elite through indoctrination, physical education, and family policy including eugenics. Fascists believe that a nation requires strong leadership, singular collective identity, and the will and ability to commit violence and wage war in order to keep the nation strong. Fascist governments forbid and suppress opposition to the state.
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Is this where we’re heading? Am I overreaching by suggesting that the current congressional leadership is offering a preview of what this nation would look like if we continue to follow their lead? Perhaps I am much too invested in reading the “tea leaves”  as to where the Republican Party intends to take this nation if allowed to reign unchecked but it sure feels like we are tipping in that direction when our laws and freedoms are replaced by measures that look a lot like the above description. And keep in mind that during the Bush years, a “single party state” was the utmost priority under Karl Rove’s vision.

The Republican Party would like nothing more than to have the United States declared a “Christian nation”. They push for allowing prayer into the classrooms. They dismiss science and seek to install Creationism in its place. They want an end to collective bargaining and the outlaw of unions. They have already begun a campaign in many states to rewrite our history in school textbooks. They wish to forbid women their right to choose. They seek to deny gays their right to equality and would go so far as to ban them from public service employment. They use the Christian bible as their form of reference, intoning “god’s will” in their decision making. They have been exposed for imposing a litmus test of Christian affiliation on the military.  They would seek to punish doctors and patients who practice and seek abortion services.   They want access to medical records of pregnant women.   They applaud those who murder practicing physicians who perform these medical procedures. 

Fascists despise “liberalism” which promotes the value of the individual over the state.  Liberalism is a direct contradiction over the meaning of what fascism represents. The Republican Party seeks comfort in authoritarianism.  It is easy to identify and compare the definition of fascism when held up alongside the agenda that is weaving  its way throughout our collective states.  Once we have found reasons to dismiss the needs of the least residing amongst us we have already started down the path.

I do not pretend to be a scholar or an academic that would do far more justice in diagramming this ascent. But I am a citizen who has watched this insidious philosophy take hold of our national dialogue. The “separation of church and state” has eroded to such a degree that it is no longer a clear line in the sand. Superstition has replaced commonsense in a nation that boasts 350 million. We are held hostage by those who would impose their religious views on the majority and the outcry in protest is weak. Republican candidates are compelled to instruct us about their Christian beliefs in a nation that is crowded with diversity.

Their “connection to god” is worn like a badge. Once we have bridged that separation the door is opened wide for the toppling of every other law in the Constitution that has made us a “beacon of hope” and an “example of democracy” to the rest of the world. Our rights as individuals are close to disappearing under these manifestations.  Little by little, state by state, politician by politician, we are losing those rights as this stealthy form of fascism continues to permeate unchallenged.

Fearful of everything and everyone around us, we turn to someone or something to hold onto. Through his own failure to lead, this president has afforded the opportunity for those who would imitate the brand of fascism outlined by the definition. He has presented them with a platform to “sow the seeds” as an alternative to failed policies that have plagued us for decades.    

My fear is the failure in us as a nation to resist. That we will certainly face some form of this creeping insidiousness promoted by the Right as a way out of the morass. That when the time comes we will capitulate as those in foreign countries did so many decades ago who ignored the warnings. I could be wrong. I hope that I am.

Perhaps I just need to quit reading those “tea leaves”.  But reread the definition of “fascism” and tell me there is no comparison.   Difficult to ignore this deceit.



I don’t think you’re reading too much, Pat. I think you’re right on. It’s interesting that Republicans think they are for individual rights (individuals should have the right to carry rockets in their pockets), but in reality they are all about the destruction of the individual. We must all believe in the same God, vote for the same politicians, etc.

DYB: Factor in “the Dominionist theory” that la t da has written about and the facts get a little closer to home. A world wide government led by a Christian leader ruling under “god’s laws”.

This movement is tied quite closely to Republican politicians who have connections to the C Street (or The Family) that was exposed during the last few years.

This stuff cannot be lightly dismissed.

Super post, Pat.

Great post, Pat.

We liberals are often wary of using the “f” word, and with good reason. “People” (who’s to say they are real?) Always show up to argue that it can’t happen here. It can, and it is.

Call it fascism, call it Austerity, call it the economic Shock Doctrine. It’s all the same: a belief that certain people are “special” and deserve to rule the teeming masses with an iron fist.

An interesting component of fascism is the idea of eugenics. In other words, the “exceptional” people must be pure of birth in some way. Tell me that idea doesn’t have echoes of the “birther” insanity.

Also, the idea of eugenics explains why the Austerians are willing to kill so many poor women with forced-birth laws. If these women were “pure” and “exceptional,” they’d be able to buy the health care they need.

I read elsewhere that people are thinking we should go L 2012 locally, forget about the Presidential election, then keep building locally until 2016, when we can get someone less fascist in the WH. I hope this will work, and I’m on board with the idea. But I also wonder if we have that long before our society turns 100% fascist.

We live in interesting times, indeed.

Pat, very thought provoking post – well done.

@4 madamab, yes it could happen, and Ron Jones proved that in his “Third Wave” experiment. I listened to an interview with him and some of the students that were in the class at the time. The results of his experiment startled him and terrified his wife and a few of the students. He actually recreated the Nazi youth movement in a high school in California over a period of a week in 1967. Scary stuff. There’s a new documentary coming out about it – The Lesson Plan.

Mea culpa, I put two links in and am in moderation (at least I hope it’s the two links that caused it).
Please release me, let me go…

I wonder if the historians years from now will label this generation as “A Nation Asleep”?

It seems that so much of this stuff has found its way to the surface in the last 30 years with little pushback coming forth to derail it.

It was so easy for Bush to advance his immoral wars by waving “patriotism” under the nose of the public and getting away with it.

@5 – HT, that rings a memory bell. I took a few psychology classes in high school, and I’m pretty sure that study was mentioned.

Thanks for the links. I will keep my eye out for the film.

John Dean, in his book “Conservatives without Conscience,” uses various stats regarding personality types called Authoritarians. According to Dean’s sources, most conservatives fall into those types. Some are the leaders who espouse and implement authoritarian policies, but most are the followers who only feel safe when an authoritarian leader is in control of their lives.

What Dean didn’t realize at the time was how many Authoritarians there are in the “progressive” community as well. Live and learn.

I think for me the next election will decide just what path we choose, either to embrace this march toward some form of fascism, or openly reject it by ridding the congress of some of these radicals.

What brings it home to me was having Walker in WI trot out the message after his election that what is wrong with this nation rests on the shoulders of unions, teachers, nurses, and those fighting for a voice within their industries. He managed to “carve out” the “enemy” much like what happened during the 30s by branding a group to hang their economic troubles on.

Rick Santorum manages to bring it even further to the surface by blaming “abortion” for today’s economic woes because there seems to not be enough babies being born to handle the revenue flow.

The truth is that we have allowed a very small segment of the population to determine and risk our economic needs and they reside on Wall Street.

Cleverly building a “straw man” argument to bypass the reality of our plight, they are announcing their intent to make inroads into our cultural lives as well.

@9 and @1 – The “liberal” ideology advocates for maximum regulation of the activities of corporations and minimum regulation of the activities of private citizens. “Fascist” (or conservative, same thing) ideology advocates for the opposite.

When you think of the two philosophies and view what has been going on for the last ten years in their light, you really begin to see how far we have advanced down the path to fascism .

I think you’re over-reacting. Yes, it was easy for Bush to push his wars, but when the country finally got around to catching up – Republicans lost the House, Senate and Presidency. They retook the House in a mid-term when only the die-hard vote. Old-time religion is not growing in America; more and more people stand up and say they’re not affiliated with any religion. And religion itself is going with the flow – gays are now accepted in main stream churches; churches (even Catholic churches) have embraced the status quo. Who knows, maybe someday they’ll even go back to supported those less fortunate among us.

jmac: I’ll believe your theories after the 2012 election. Right now the current slate of elected politicians in many states, along with the present congress, are proposing and passing legislature that would neuter a woman’s right to choose and most of that is based on religious beliefs.

Gays, women, the sick and the elderly have been made the scapegoats and this is coming from people who declare themselves “Christians”. Don’t see too many Jews or members of other denominations thrusting their beliefs into the public square as often as this group.

As for the Catholic Church embracing gays, you have to be kidding. They will never “go with the flow” when it comes to women, gays, population control, and pedophile priests are still being “outed” even as we speak.

The country did not get around to “catching up” with Bush and his company of liars until it was finally made known that WMD never existed and the body bags for this atrocity kept coming home on a scale that we were told would never happen. Up until then, and for a long time after, the MSM was singing his praises.

It was “Mission Accomplished” and french fries be damned as we spit into the faces of our allies who refused to a play role in this obsenity!

@12 – Agreed; in fact, Bush was invulnerable in the media until Katrina happened. 9/11 saved him – before then, his agenda was DOA. Fear allowed him to begin the road to fascism.

Sometimes I look back at old posts and I shake my head. This is one from the time of Obama’s inauguration. It is pretty clear what my main concern has always been with an Obama Presidency, I think.

OT, but John W. Smart has the president of the Florida Whig Party on his show tonight.

Might be good for a laugh or two.

off-topic but “local girl makes good”.

“I’m the girl who can juggle and hit high C while doing the splits,” McMahon …

She is lovely, Fredster! Good for her!

Hope I’m down there and can maybe get to one of her performances.

I found one youtube of her as Pamina in Magic Flute but audio wasn’t too good.

MB: I watched the HBO Mildred Pierce and after Veda discovers she’s not a pianist but rather singer, Mildred is talking to her teacher and says something about her being a wonderful person or something and teacher says wonderful person no, singer yes, but that since she was a coloratura of course she was a bitch. 😉

@19 – Hey! I resemble that remark! 😉

By all accounts, Florence Foster Jenkins was a lovely person. A great singer, not so much.

MB@20: LOL!!

This lady, on the other hand, could REALLY sing. I don’t know anything at all about her personality, but who cares?

mb@22: That was beautiful, but you gotta hear THIS one. Probably doesn’t have half the attitude of the sopranos. 😉

Uh-oh…either I ticked of Mad or she’s listening to John’s show.

Neither – I’m watching “The Event.” I’m addicted! I’ll probably dl John’s show later.

Its the finally of RuPaul’s Drag Race! Alexis Mateo!

MB@25: the parrot isn’t bad! 😆

@fuzzy: I’ll have to check them out.

[…] for the next five years, at the very least; I fear it could be much longer than that. The fascism Pat spoke of on Monday will be much nearer to becoming entrenched in our […]

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