Tuesday, June 16, 2009

 

Obama as Fascist

Tom Smith points out that Obama actually does satisfy most of the characteristics of a fascist (my boldfacing):

Frank Rich warns of hate from the Right, fanned by those who would stoop so low as to call Obamaism fascism.  Well, OK.  Then what would be OK?  Or maybe PC?  "Somewhat worrying corporatist tendencies"? It's that cult of personality plus extreme intervention into the private sector plus demonization of political opposition thing one wants to capture. I'm certainly open to better terms besides "fascist" -- I'm just not sure what it would be.  I agree it's imperfect.  Rather than beat you with the fasces, this movement wants to regulate you, bore you with third rate political theory, dissolve intermediate institutions, and preen its own moral superiority.  Soft Despotism maybe?  Jonah Goldberg's "liberal fascism" is pretty good, but it still uses the F word.

Very astute. One feature Obama emphatically does not have is Nationalism (or its related ethnic pride). But another feature you didn't mention is the relaxation of laws with respect to political allies. We've just heard about Black Panthers being allowed to intimidate voters, and about an inspector-general who was fired for pointing out that a Democratic mayor had broken the law. That's reminiscient of how the Nazis at first relied on the Brown Shirts to beat up regime opponents, rather than making use of the police (the Gestapo came at a later stage of the process).

 

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