Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Liberalism vs. Fascism
Ludwig von Mises Institute ^ | November 25, 2005 | Roderick T. Long

Posted on 03/21/2006 10:27:22 AM PST by Marxbites

Fascism differs from its close cousins, Communism and aristocratic conservatism, in several important ways. To understand these differences is to see how classical liberalism offers a completely different view of social and economic organization, a perspective that departs radically from the views of both right and left, as those terms are understood in contemporary political language.

Let's begin with its difference from Communism. First, where Communism seeks to substitute the state for private ownership, fascism seeks to incorporate or co-opt private ownership into the state apparatus through public-private partnership. Thus fascism tends to be more tempting than Communism to wealthy interests who may see it as a way to insulate their economic power from competition through forced cartelization and other corporatist stratagems.

Second, where Communist ideology tends to be cosmopolitan and internationalist, fascist ideology tends to be chauvinistically nationalist, stressing a particularist allegiance to one's country, culture, or ethnicity; along with this goes a suspicion of rationalism, a preference for economic autarky, and a view of life as one of inevitable but glorious struggle. Fascism also tends to cultivate a "folksy" or völkisch "man of the people," "pragmatism over principles," "heart over head," "pay no attention to those pointy-headed intellectuals" rhetorical style.

These contrasts with Communism should not be overstated, of course. Communist governments cannot afford to suppress private ownership entirely, since doing so leads swiftly to economic collapse. Moreover, however internationalist and cosmopolitan Communist regimes may be in theory, they tend to be just as chauvinistically nationalist in practice as their fascist cousins; while on the other hand fascist regimes are sometimes perfectly willing to pay lip service to liberal universalism.

All the same, there is a difference in emphasis and in strategy between fascism and Communism here. When faced with existing institutions that threaten the power of the state—be they corporations, churches, the family, tradition—the Communist impulse is by and large to abolish them, while the fascist impulse is by and large to absorb them.

Power structures external to the state are potential rivals to the state's own power, and so states always have some reason to seek their abolition; Communism gives that tendency full rein. But power structures external to the state are also potential allies of the state, particularly if they serve to encourage habits of subordination and regimentation in the populace, and so the potential always exists for a mutually beneficial partnership; herein lies the fascist strategy.

The respects in which fascism differs from Communism might seem to align it rather more closely with the traditional aristocratic conservatism of the ancien régime, which is likewise particularist, corporatist, mercantilist, nationalist, militarist, patriarchal, and anti-rationalist. But fascism differs from old-style conservatism in embracing an ideal of industrial progress directed by managerial technocrats, as well as in adopting a populist stance of championing the "little guy" against elites—remember the folksiness. (If fascism's technocratic tendencies appear to conflict with its anti-rationalist tendencies, well, in the words of proto-fascist Moeller van den Bruck, "we must be strong enough to live in contradictions.")


Some of the differences between fascism and the older conservatism may be due to the advances won by their common foes, the liberals. The progress of liberalism and of industry had the effect of shifting wealth, at least in part, from the traditional aristocracy to new private hands, thus creating new private interest groups with the ability to operate as political entrepreneurs; hence, perhaps, the tendency toward the emergence of a plutocratic class nominally outside the traditional state apparatus. Likewise the progress of democracy meant that plutocracy could hope to triumph only by donning populist guise; hence the paradox of an elitist movement marching forward under the banner of anti-elitism—a prime example in U.S. history being antitrust laws and other allegedly anti-big-business legislation being vigorously lobbied for by big business itself.

(Cf. Murray Rothbard's "War Collectivism in World War I," Paul Weaver's The Suicidal Corporation: How Big Business Fails America, Gabriel Kolko's Railroads and Regulation, 1877—1916 and Triumph of Conservatism: A Reinterpretation of American History, 1900-1916, Butler Shaffer's In Restraint of Trade: The Business Campaign Against Competition, 1918-1938, Roy Childs' "Big Business and the Rise of American Statism," Joseph Stromberg's "Political Economy of Liberal Corporatism" and "The Role of State Monopoly Capitalism in the American Empire," Walter Grinder & John Hagel's "Toward a Theory of State Capitalism: Ultimate Decision-Making and Class Structure," etc.)

Hence fascism's odd fusion of privilege and folksiness; one might call it a movement that thinks like Halliburton and talks like George W. Bush.

The partnership between the official state apparatus and the nominally private beneficiaries of state power was a familiar theme for 19th-century libertarians like Frédéric Bastiat and Gustave de Molinari, who extended and radicalized Adam Smith's critique of mercantilist protectionism as a scheme for benefiting concentrated business interests at the expense of the general public. In Molinari's words, businesses "asked the government to safeguard their monopolies by the same methods that it had put into effect for protecting its own." ("The Evolution of Protectionism.")

Libertarian sociologists like Charles Comte and Charles Dunoyer had developed an entire pre-Marxian theory of class conflict, according to which the key to the position of the ruling class is not, contra Marx, access to the means of production, but rather access to political power. (Cf. David Hart's Radical Liberalism of Charles Comte and Charles Dunoyer, Leonard Liggio's "Charles Dunoyer and French Classical Liberalism," Ralph Raico's "Classical Liberal Exploitation Theory," Mark Weinburg's "Social Analysis of Three Early 19th-Century Classical Liberals," etc.)

When Marx called the French government "a joint-stock company for the exploitation of France's national wealth" on behalf of the bourgeois elite and at the expense of production and commerce ("Class Struggles in France"), he was only echoing what libertarians had been saying for decades.

Herbert Spencer likewise complained of the influence of "railway autocrats" in American politics, "overriding the rights of shareholders" and "dominating over courts of justice and State governments." ("The Americans.") And Lysander Spooner denounced the financial and banking elite, writing as follows:

Among savages, mere physical strength, on the part of one man, may enable him to rob, enslave, or kill another man. . . . But with (so-called) civilized peoples . . . by whom soldiers in any requisite number, and other instrumentalities of war in any requisite amount, can always be had for money, the question of war, and consequently the question of power, is little else than a mere question of money. As a necessary consequence, those who stand ready to furnish this money, are the real rulers. . . . [The] nominal rulers, the emperors and kings and parliaments, are anything but the real rulers of their respective countries. They are little or nothing else than mere tools, employed by the wealthy to rob, enslave, and (if need be) murder those who have less wealth, or none at all. . . . [The] so-called sovereigns, in these different governments, are simply the heads, or chiefs, of different bands of robbers and murderers. And these heads or chiefs are dependent upon the lenders of blood-money for the means to carry on their robberies and murders. They could not sustain themselves a moment but for the loans made to them by these blood-money loan-mongers. . . . In addition to paying the interest on their bonds, they perhaps grant to the holders of them great monopolies in banking, like the Banks of England, of France, and of Vienna; with the agreement that these banks shall furnish money whenever, in sudden emergencies, it may be necessary to shoot down more of their people. Perhaps also, by means of tariffs on competing imports, they give great monopolies to certain branches of industry, in which these lenders of blood-money are engaged. They also, by unequal taxation, exempt wholly or partially the property of these loan-mongers, and throw corresponding burdens upon those who are too poor and weak to resist. (No Treason VI.)

As this quotation from Spooner shows, 19th-century libertarians also saw a connection between plutocracy and militarism, and sharply criticized what today would be called the military-industrial complex. Spencer, for example, railed against the "military aid and state-conferred privileges" enjoyed by the East India Company, which enabled it to commit "deeds of blood and rapine" in India where "the police authorities league with wealthy scamps" to "allow the machinery of the law to be used for purposes of extortion." Such abuses, Spencer noted, were "mainly due to the carrying on of state-management, and with the help of state-funds and state-force." Had the military might of the British Empire not been placed at the disposal of the Company's directors, "their defenseless state would have compelled them" to behave differently; they would of necessity have "turned their attention wholly to the development of commerce, and conducted themselves peaceably." (Social Statics, ch. 27.) Writing in the mid-1800s, Spencer complained especially of the "grievous salt monopoly"—which would of course become the chief catalyst for the Indian independence movement nearly a century later.

But who [Spencer wrote] are the gainers? The monopolists. . . . Into their pockets, in the shape of salaries to civil and military officers, dividends of profits, etc., has gone a large part of the enormous revenue of the East India company. . . . The rich owners of colonial property must have protection, as well as their brethren, the landowners of England—the one their prohibitive duties, the other their corn laws; and the resources of the poor, starved, overburdened people must be still further drained, to augment the overflowing wealth of their rulers. ("The Proper Sphere of Government.")

Thus plutocracy, these libertarian writers thought, drives militarism. But they also held that militarism drives plutocracy. Thus the American Spencerian William Graham Sumner argued:

[M]ilitarism, expansion and imperialism will all favor plutocracy. In the first place, war and expansion will favor jobbery, both in the dependencies and at home. In the second place, they will take away the attention of the people from what the plutocrats are doing. In the third place, they will cause large expenditures of the people's money, the return for which will not go into the treasury, but into the hands of a few schemers. In the fourth place, they will call for a large public debt and taxes, and these things especially tend to make men unequal, because any social burdens bear more heavily on the weak than on the strong, and so make the weak weaker and the strong stronger. ("Conquest of the United States by Spain.")

While the influence of private wealth on government was not exactly anything new, 19th-century libertarians tended to think that it had been given a new impetus by the rise of democracy and its inevitable accompaniment, interest-group politics—what the French liberals called "ulcerous government." A number of libertarians argued that representative democracy leads to a struggle for political influence among competing special-interest groups, and unsurprisingly it is the wealthier and more concentrated interests that tend to win out. Sumner, for example, maintained that democracy, far from being, as is usually supposed, the archenemy of plutocracy, is actually plutocracy's crucial enabler:

The methods and machinery of democratic, republican self-government—caucuses, primaries, committees, and conventions—lend themselves perhaps more easily than other political methods and machinery to the uses of selfish cliques which seek political influence for interested purposes. (Sumner, "Andrew Jackson") [On this topic I highly recommend Scott Trask's article "William Graham Sumner: Against Democracy, Plutocracy, and Imperialism" in the Fall 2004 issue of the Journal of Libertarian Studies.]

But on this point writers like Sumner were simply developing the implications of James Madison's remark in the Federalist that the extreme mutability to which representative governments are liable is likely to work to the benefit of a wealthy minority:

It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is to-day, can guess what it will be to-morrow. . . . Another effect of public instability is the unreasonable advantage it gives to the sagacious, the enterprising, and the moneyed few over the industrious and uniformed mass of the people. Every new regulation concerning commerce or revenue, or in any way affecting the value of the different species of property, presents a new harvest to those who watch the change, and can trace its consequences; a harvest, reared not by themselves, but by the toils and cares of the great body of their fellow-citizens. This is a state of things in which it may be said with some truth that laws are made for the FEW, not for the MANY. (Federalist 62.)

And Madison in his turn was drawing on the ancient Athenian argument that electoral systems are actually oligarchic rather than democratic. (See my "The Athenian Constitution: Government by Jury and Referendum.")

While both libertarians and Marxists complained of the power of wealthy elites, they disagreed on the remedy, because they disagreed on the origin of the problem. For the Marxists, plutocracy was a product of the market; the ruling class emerged through commerce, and only subsequently seized control of the state in order to consolidate its already established hegemony. (Marx himself was ambivalent on this question, but Engels solidified the orthodox Marxist position.) Hence for the Marxists it was the market that needed to be suppressed; this is the origin of the left-wing view that fascism is simply a manifestation of free-market "capitalism." For the libertarians, by contrast, a ruling class depends for its power on the power of the state, and so it is the latter that needs to be suppressed.

The libertarians did not, however, make the mistake of supposing that state power by itself was the sole problem. Since rulers are generally outnumbered by those they rule, these thinkers saw that state power itself cannot survive except through popular acceptance, which the state lacks the power to compel. In Spencer's words, "In the case of a government representing a dominant class . . . [t]he very existence of a class monopolizing all power, is due to certain sentiments in the commonalty." ("The Social Organism.") Likewise Dunoyer writes:

The first mistake, and to my mind the most serious, is not sufficiently seeing difficulties where they are—not recognising them except in governments. Since it is indeed there that the greatest obstacles ordinarily make themselves felt, it is assumed that that is where they exist, and that alone is where one endeavours to attack them. . . . One is unwilling to see that nations are the material from which governments are made; that it is from their bosom that governments emerge. (Industry and Morals.)

Or again as American anarchist Edwin Walker pointedly asked: if statism were the cause of all social evil, what on earth could be the cause of statism? (Communism and Conscience.)

19th-century libertarians, then, tended to be "radical" or "dialectical" thinkers in Chris Sciabarra's sense; they viewed state power as part of an interlocking system of mutually reinforcing social practices and structures, and were intensely interested in the institutional and cultural accompaniments of statism—accompaniments which both drew support from and provided support to the power of the state.

It is in their analysis of these accompaniments that we see them grappling with the specifically fascist aspects of statist culture. Writers like Dunoyer, Spencer, and Molinari saw a close connection between statism and militarism because in their view the state originated in war; tribes that succeeded in fending off invaders became increasingly dependent on their warrior class, while tribes that failed to fend off invaders become the subjects of the enemy tribe's warrior class—and in either the case the warrior class was thereby positioned to become a ruling class. Dunoyer and Spencer also saw a reciprocal relationship between statism and militarism on the one hand and patriarchy on the other, since they regarded the rule of men over women as the original class division from which all later ones grew. They would thus not have been surprised to see fascist movements glorifying military conquest on the one hand and the patriarchal family on the other.

They would also not have been surprised to notice that fascism takes its name from the fasces, the Roman symbol of an axe in a bundle of rods. (A bundle of rods by itself indicated that an official had the power to inflict corporal punishment; adding an axe to the bundle of rods implied the power to inflict death as well.) Bastiat regarded the prevailing reverence for ancient Rome as a pernicious cultural influence. He wrote:

What was [Roman] patriotism? Hatred of foreigners, the destruction of all civilization, the stifling of all progress, the scourging of the world with fire and sword, the chaining of women, children, and old men to triumphal chariots—this was glory, this was virtue. . . . The lesson has not been lost; and it is from Rome undoubtedly that this adage comes to us . . . one nation's loss is another nation's gain—an adage that still governs the world. To acquire an idea of Roman morality, imagine in the heart of Paris an organization of men who hate to work, determined to satisfy their wants by deceit and force, and consequently at war with society. Doubtless a certain moral code and even some solid virtues will soon manifest themselves in such an organization. Courage, perseverance, self-control, prudence, discipline, constancy in misfortune, deep secrecy, punctilio, devotion to the community—such undoubtedly will be the virtues that necessity and prevailing opinion would develop among these brigands; such were those of the buccaneers; such were those of the Romans. It may be said that, in regard to the latter, the grandeur of their enterprise and the immensity of their success has thrown so glorious a veil over their crimes as to transform them into virtues. And this is precisely why that school is so pernicious. It is not abject vice, it is vice crowned with splendor, that seduces men's souls. ("Acadeic Degrees and Socialism.")

Rome, incidentally, was another culture in which plutocracy triumphed by adopting a democratic guise.

Spencer was convinced that Western culture in his day was entering a retrograde phase, a phase he called "re-barbarization," in which the values of industrial society, the society of voluntary cooperation and mutual benefit, were yielding once more to the older values of militant society, of hierarchy, regimentation, aggressive impulses, anti-intellectuality, and a zero-sum view of human existence. Spencer saw evidence of re-barbarization not only in official military policy but also in cultural developments, as for example in the increasing militarization of the church, or the recrudescence of what he called the "religion of enmity." (Principles of Sociology.) Spencer was distressed to observe that in "the Church-services held on the occasion of the departure of troops for South Africa [he was writing of the Boer War] . . . certain hymns are used in a manner which substitutes for the spiritual enemy the human enemy. Thus for a generation past, under cover of the forms of a religion which preaches peace, love, and forgiveness, there has been a perpetual shouting of the words 'war' and 'blood,' 'fire' and 'battle,' and a continual exercise of the antagonistic feelings." (Facts and Comments, ch. 25.)

Another cultural development that Spencer identified as a symptom of re-barbarization was the rise of professional sports. In Spencer's words:

Naturally along with . . . exaltation of brute force in its armed form . . . showing how widely the trait of coerciveness, which is the essential element in militancy, has pervaded the nation, there has gone a cultivation of skilled physical force under the form of athleticism. The word is quite modern, for the reason that a generation ago the facts to be embraced under it were not sufficiently numerous and conspicuous to call for it. In my early days "sports," so called, were almost exclusively represented by one weekly paper, Bell's Life in London, found I am told in the haunts of rowdies and in taverns of a low class. Since then, the growth has been such that the acquirement of skill in leading games has become an absorbing occupation. . . . Meanwhile, to satisfy the demand journalism has been developing, so that besides sundry daily and weekly papers devoted wholly to sports, the ordinary daily and weekly papers give reports of "events" in all localities, and not unfrequently a daily paper has a whole page occupied with them. . . . While bodily superiority is coming to the front, mental superiority is retreating into the background. . . . Thus various changes point back to those mediaeval days when courage and bodily power were the sole qualifications of the ruling classes, while such culture as existed was confined to priests and the inmates of monasteries. (Facts and Comments, ch. 25.)

Such symptoms of militarization and barbarization in the arena of culture proceeded in tandem with analogous changes in government, including a shift in power from civilian to military authority, and within the civilian government from parliamentary to executive authority. In 1881 Spencer referred to the measures then being taken in Germany

for extending, directly and indirectly, the control over popular life. On the one hand there are the laws under which, up to middle of last year [i.e., 1880], 224 socialist societies have been closed, 180 periodicals suppressed, 317 books, &c., forbidden . . . On the other hand may be named Prince Bismarck's scheme for re-establishing guilds (bodies which by their regulations coerce their members), and his scheme of State-insurance. . . . In all which changes we see progress towards . . . the replacing of civil organization by military organization, towards the strengthening of restraints over the individual and regulation of his life in greater detail. (Principles of Sociology V. 17.)

And Spencer saw England beginning to follow in Germany's footsteps; he noted with alarm "a manifest extension of the militant spirit and discipline among the police, who, wearing helmet-shaped hats, beginning to carry revolvers, and looking upon themselves as half soldiers, have come to speak of the people as 'civilians'," and he objected to the "increasing assimilation of the volunteer forces to the regular army, now going to the extent of proposing to make them available abroad, so that instead of defensive action for which they were created, they can be used for offensive action." (Ibid.)

A few years later, on the other side of the Atlantic, Voltairine de Cleyre noted analogous developments in America:

Our fathers thought they had guarded against a standing army by providing for the voluntary militia. In our day we have lived to see this militia declared part of the regular military force of the United States, and subject to the same demands as the regulars. Within another generation we shall probably see its members in the regular pay of the general government. ("Anarchism and American Traditions.")

At the time of the Spanish-American War, Sumner was writing of the "Conquest of the United States by Spain," meaning that the United States, while victorious over Spain on the battlefield, was succumbing ideologically to the imperialist ideas that Spain had traditionally represented. And E. L. Godkin, the editor of The Nation—at that time a classical liberal periodical—wrote despairingly in 1900 of the "Eclipse of Liberalism":

Nationalism in the sense of national greed [he wrote] has supplanted Liberalism. . . . By making the aggrandizement of a particular nation a higher end than the welfare of mankind, it has sophisticated the moral sense of Christendom. . . . We hear no more of natural rights, but of inferior races, whose part it is to submit to the government of those whom God has made their superiors. The old fallacy of divine right has once more asserted its ruinous power, and before it is again repudiated there must be international struggles on a terrific scale. At home all criticism on the foreign policy of our rulers is denounced as unpatriotic. They must not be changed, for the national policy must be continuous. Abroad, the rulers of every country must hasten to every scene of international plunder, that they may secure their share. To succeed in these predatory expeditions the restraints on parliamentary . . . government must be cast aside. ("The Eclipse of Liberalism.")

In short, the 19th-century libertarians observed the rise of the various tendencies that would come together to make fascism—militarism, corporatism, regimentation, nationalist chauvinism, plutocracy in populist guise, the call for "strong leaders" and "national greatness," the glorification of conflict over commerce and of brute force over intellect—and they bitterly opposed the whole package. And although they ultimately lost that battle, their fallen banner is ours to pick up.

Let me give Sumner the last word; he's writing once again of the Spanish-American War:

[T]he reason why liberty, of which we Americans talk so much, is a good thing is that it means leaving people to live out their own lives in their own way, while we do the same. If we believe in liberty, as an American principle, why do we not stand by it? Why are we going to throw it away to enter upon a Spanish policy of dominion and regulation? . . . [T]his scheme of a republic which our fathers formed was a glorious dream which demands more than a word of respect and affection before it passes away. . . . Their idea was that they would never allow any of the social and political abuses of the old world to grow up here. . . . There were to be no armies except a militia, which would have no functions but those of police. They would have no court and no pomp; no orders, or ribbons, or decorations, or titles. They would have no public debt. . . . There was to be no grand diplomacy, because they intended to mind their own business and not be involved in any of the intrigues to which European statesmen were accustomed. There was to be no balance of power and no "reason of state" to cost the life and happiness of citizens. . . . Our fathers would have an economical government, even if grand people called it a parsimonious one, and taxes should be no greater than were absolutely necessary to pay for such a government. The citizen was to keep all the rest of his earnings and use them as he thought best for the happiness of himself and his family; he was, above all, to be insured peace and quiet while he pursued his honest industry and obeyed the laws. No adventurous policies of conquest or ambition . . . would ever be undertaken by a free democratic republic. Therefore the citizen here would never be forced to leave his family or to give his sons to shed blood for glory and to leave widows and orphans in misery for nothing. . . . It is by virtue of these ideals that we have been "isolated," isolated in a position which the other nations of the earth have observed in silent envy; and yet there are people who are boasting of their patriotism, because they say that we have taken our place now amongst the nations of the earth by virtue of this war. ("Conquest of the United States by Spain.")


Roderick Long teaches philosophy at Auburn University and is editor of The Journal of Libertarian Studies. This paper was delivered at the Mises Institute Conference on Fascism, October 7–8, 2005. This paper also available on audio. Comment on the blog.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government
KEYWORDS: communism; fascism; liberalism; liberals
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-2021-4041-47 next last

So folks, which are we????

1 posted on 03/21/2006 10:27:26 AM PST by Marxbites
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

I'm about sick of the "aristocratic conservatism" as practices by today's GOP.

Seal the border, end the Great Society, cut spending, inspect shipping containers.......... oh well, no matter how frustrating the results may be, maybe if it's repeated enough something will be done.

2 posted on 03/21/2006 10:30:31 AM PST by 308MBR ("Ah fell in ta a bhurnin' ring o' far")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

Reminds me of this classical thread. Every time I hear or see "Fascist" I now think of this thread:

3 posted on 03/21/2006 10:33:13 AM PST by jdm
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

Mordern liberalism is driven by fascism for at the very heart of the two the essence is the same.
The fascism of Hitler in some respects has much in common with todays radical left and neither can produce anything but destruction and death (Nazism doing so with direct intentions to achieve their goals, but often as a by-product of liberalism along the way to theirs) for at their common core is the arrogant mind-set of "superiority" and “elitism” that makes them both alike with the exception of what their ambitions look like and how they purpose to carry them out.
There are millions of people who have, and millions more who will suffer or die because of fascism, be it in under socialism, or communism, or pseudo-capitalism, for fascism can dwell within all of these societies.

Fascism is based on elitism and previously appeared most often with emphasis placed on nationalism and physical elements such as genetics and race. The fascism of modern liberalism is different in that it removes the boundaries of nationalism in favor of internationalism. The adversary then becomes not other nations or races who are considered inferior, but those that oppose the idea of an world government run by elitist who establish international law superceding those of the individual nations or states. The strong nationalism which was in past times used to drive fascism is replaced with internationalism. Superiority is no longer determined based upon race or nationality but upon conforming to a very specific liberal ideology so that those holding liberal ideology then become the "master race".

This liberal ideology in actuality is ideofascism and applies a Darwinistic approach to the mind. It is based on the illusion that by purging out "inferior" beliefs in society, and then replacing them with those which they judge to be superior, they will bring the whole world into a new and more perfect age.
For decades there has been great effort put forth by these elitist to hammer public mentality into form by labeling it “main stream” while demonizing everyone that was nonconforming. Hitler's quest for supremacy through the perfection of genetics has been replaced by others, who holding a different vision of the same dream, seek to impose upon all mankind by law what they believe to be an intellectual supremacy.

Egocentric elitism spawned Nazism, but it can no longer thrive in that past form which was made naked and therefore has mutated like a virus mutates to conceal itself in order to survive and spread. Although it has morphed offering a “new” idealistic vision for the world , it still runs parallel with occurrences during the reign of Hitler, albeit in a much softer form.

Liberal fascism is an effeminate fascism which has morphed by forsaking its masculinity to become a seemingly “nonviolent” movement that prefers seduction over brute force and is thus more marketable to the modern world than the fascism of yesterday which was segregated and held limited appeal.
It is a fascism with narcissistic appeal, universally adaptable to all people who will submit and therefore more dangerous than any fascism before it as it will find fewer opponents, and is already accepted by millions world wide. The "Final Solution" will be the attempt to legislate the conscience of man to conform to this neo-fascism. Nonconformist will be deemed intolerant and will not be tolerated.
Unlike the Nazis, Liberazis will not be centralized destroying only certain nations, but having an international presence they have the potential to bring humanity into bondage and destroy the world.

4 posted on 03/21/2006 10:39:12 AM PST by inpajamas
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: inpajamas

Don't forget that the Founders & Adam Smith, and other champions of liberty, WERE liberals, of the classical variety.

Leftists, like today's Dems, are as illiberal as the day is long. The progressive era basically stole the name to hide their anything but liberal agenda of the oppressive state for their own benefits.

5 posted on 03/21/2006 10:59:40 AM PST by Marxbites (Freedom is the negation of Govt to the maximum extent possible. Today Govt is the economy's virus.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

you are right, but modern liberalism bears no resemblance.

6 posted on 03/21/2006 11:01:58 AM PST by inpajamas
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites
fascism seeks to incorporate or co-opt private ownership into the state apparatus through public-private partnership...

Point is, this public/private "partnership" is about as asymmetrical as it gets. Which parter is far more "equal"? Why, the state, of course. In fascism, the state finds allies in business and keeps the alliances alive, but only so long as business serves the state's purpose. Can the business terminate the state in fascism? Heck no! Can the state terminate the business? Oh, yeah! This is no partnership. It is really an interlocking government directorate. This, in essence, is EXACTLY the same as communism.
For years, people have puzzled, needlessly, over the "nuances" between fascism and communism, some going so far as to deem them opposites. In fact, they are merely the same emperor in varying "states" of dress (or undress).

7 posted on 03/21/2006 11:18:41 AM PST by Migraine (...diversity is great (until it happens to you)...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: inpajamas

Then we agree!

Except that I see myself as a liberal constitutionalist. Liberal in the sense that I don't need or want Govt telling me what to do beyond obeying the laws whose sole function is in the preservation of all the rights of all.

8 posted on 03/21/2006 11:27:06 AM PST by Marxbites (Freedom is the negation of Govt to the maximum extent possible. Today Govt is the economy's virus.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Migraine

You are absolutely correct. Collectivism is liberty's enemy.

9 posted on 03/21/2006 11:28:29 AM PST by Marxbites (Freedom is the negation of Govt to the maximum extent possible. Today Govt is the economy's virus.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: 308MBR
I'm about sick of the "aristocratic conservatism" as practices by today's GOP.

Aristocratic conservatism is not American conservatism. It is more closely related to monarchy and feudal systems.

10 posted on 03/21/2006 11:48:03 AM PST by D Rider
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

How can you go through high school with the name Rod Long??
I guess he was philosophical about it!

11 posted on 03/21/2006 11:56:41 AM PST by waverna
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 308MBR
I'm about sick of the "aristocratic conservatism" as practices by today's GOP.

There has always been a strain of pro-business, anti-laissez faire sentiment in the Republican Party. Abraham Lincoln, the party's patriarch, repeatedly indicated that he was strongly influenced by Henry Clay, a strong advocate of taxpayer funded internal improvements and protective tariffs. Clay was, in turn, influenced by Alexander Hamilton, the first champion of expansive Federal authority. A majority of the founders of the Republican Party were former Whigs, which was the party favored by manufacturers and wealthy people, including many Southern plantation owners. Alexander Stephens, the Confederate Vice President, was, like Lincoln, a former Whig.

The closest thing this country has had to a classical liberal party was the Democrats of the 19th Century. Jefferson, Jackson, and Cleveland were more libertarian than any Republican President, possibly excepting Harding and Coolidge. However, the rise of urban political machines such as Tammany Hall in the Northern cities in the late 19th Century and the rise of the Populist and Progressive movements in the 1890s and early 1900s moved the Democrats toward statism and, by the New Deal, socialism. By the 1930s, even moderate (pro-regulation) Republicans like Herbert Hoover seemed to be champions of liberty because the Democratic Party had moved leftward from the late 19th Century onward.

In the early 21st Century, the two parties have both become beholden to different factions of the elite: the Democrats to the entertainment, education, and tech industries and the Republicans to the energy, agribusiness, and military-industrial areas. Soros vs. Haliburton, if you will. Both parties have strong connections with overseas businessmen in China, the Middle East, and elsewhere. It is not a pretty picture, if you believe in limited government and free markets, but there you have it.

12 posted on 03/21/2006 12:09:40 PM PST by Wallace T.
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites


13 posted on 03/21/2006 12:15:07 PM PST by jdhljc169
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Wallace T.

A VERY good summary.

14 posted on 03/21/2006 12:21:58 PM PST by rob777 (Personal Responsibility is the Price of Freedom)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Wallace T.
There has always been a strain of pro-business, anti-laissez faire sentiment in the Republican Party.

That is why I consider myself a small "L" libertarian.
15 posted on 03/21/2006 12:23:42 PM PST by rob777 (Personal Responsibility is the Price of Freedom)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Wallace T.

Regrettably, not only do I have it, but so do the rest of us, and we are "having it" in a most unpleasant way.

16 posted on 03/21/2006 12:33:17 PM PST by 308MBR ("Ah fell in ta a bhurnin' ring o' far")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: inpajamas
Excellent little essay; I particularly like the description of modern liberalism as "effeminate fascism." There are in fact many commonalities between fascism and today's so-called liberalism:

1. The tolerance of free enterprise while simultaneously bringing it under the iron fist of the State.

2. A belief that life's meaning derives from collectivist politics, e.g., "the politics of meaning" championed by Hillary.

3. A profound hatred of the Judeo-Christian tradition.

4. Nature-worship and a paganism which looks back fondly to our pre-Christian past.

5. Elitism.

6. Intolerance towards intellectual adversaries.

7. Nihilism and exaltation of the irrational.

8. Darwinism.

9. Cynicism; mockery and rejection of altruism.

10. Weakening of intermediary social institutions (family/church/business) in order to facilitate a direct relationship between the individual and the federal government.

11. Naturalism in law; denial of divine authority in any sense.

12. Separation of economic rights from political rights, e.g., it doesn't matter if you can vote, as long as you are fed and housed.

The issue of violence is complex. Although the Left is superficially anti-military, this is somewhat of a false impression. They are, above all, against the American military. But they do worship revolutionaries such as Che and Fidel and Mao, and they are quite capable of violence when it suits their purposes. History bears this out. Liberals have us all studying the salem Witch Trials, where maybe a handful of people were falsely executed, and gloss over the millions killed - more recently - under communist regimes.
17 posted on 03/21/2006 12:39:07 PM PST by Steve_Seattle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

We're both.

Corporatism and Communism are two sides of the exact same coin. Corporatism produces a communist reaction, and communism incites further insular actions on the part of corporatists. Leads to a sort of hi/lo welfare state, with the true entrepreneurs, and industrious middle-class being squeezed.

This country could seriously use a 3rd party, IMHO. America's being torn in half on purpose for the benefit of extremists and elitists on both sides.

18 posted on 03/21/2006 1:00:01 PM PST by CowboyJay (Rough Riders! Tancredo '08)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Marxbites

A "corporate/fascist warfare/welfare state"?

(Couldn't resist)

19 posted on 03/21/2006 7:08:47 PM PST by secretagent
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: x; cornelis


20 posted on 03/21/2006 7:48:54 PM PST by KC Burke (Men of intemperate minds can never be free....)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-2021-4041-47 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson