"... what does a democratic society do with those who espouse the destruction of democracy? To fight back with other than stringently legal methods entails adopting the enemy's undemocratic stance,
and so legitimates the fascists' vision. However, to do nothing is equally dangerous, showing weakness or even complicity.
In the end, I suppose that populism will only be defeated in Larsson's way, through patient argument and watchfulness." from the Guardian
Giffords, 40,... after being shot through the
head..., criticised Sarah Palin last year for putting her and 19 other Democrats
on a hitlist of districts, each shown as being in crosshairs. Guardian
There's nothing new about the Tea Party, it stands in the tradition of other
right-wing movements like the John Birch Society, the KKK, the
Goldwater movement, or the McCarthy scare. All are white-supremacist, religious fundamentalist, paranoid, conservatives
who are unable to tolerate any change or differences from their own ideology. It is based on fear. It
is part of the Republican party.
Income inequality has a natural tendency to increase, but, as Per Molander
has pointed out, it can be kept in some control as the Scandinavian countries have done. Failure to do this is likely the cause of a world-wide
decline of democracy. The greater it gets, the more likely will be a rise of right wing politics accompanied by a surge of racism, nationalism and propaganda. To
serve the elite, certain of the people are kept down: people of color,
women, dissidents, gays, and the poor. Prison labor, outsized debt (for example students) or wage slavery can keep the population down. Strong policing can assist in
this effort. Those seeking to improve workers conditions are suppressed, often by
violence, and not just within national boundaries. Labor unions disappear, the elite are inconvenienced to have to negotiate with them.
Religious institutions take the place of weakening social
supports, but not very well. A bake sale does not help much in the face
of heavy health care expenses. Women are made second class citizens, their reproductive rights canceled. There is no concern for population policy or environmental destruction.
The Tea Party was well funded by oligarchs.
Germany was an advanced, Christian country until about the 1930’s, but in a very short time big corporations, including some in the US,
funded an unpopular Nazi movement, and a turn to Fascism changed that. Fascism, by dictionary definition, is rule by corporations.
The US forgot those lessons. We elected billionaires who reward themselves at public expense, seem to mainly want tax cuts for themselves, fortified borders, a new round of nuclear weapons, and expansion of the world’s largest military.
Our elected Republican billionaires despise democracy and undermine its supports: the press, schools, elections, the Courts.
We are number one in military, prison population, armaments, deportations, and Republicans are expanding them all.
The Fascist State does not care about its people, which is why there will likely be no improvement in health care, meals-on-wheels, head-start, and so on. They are rolling back all consumer protections.
Say goodbye to net neutrality or privacy protection by ISPs (cable companies).
To resist Fascism, after WWII, FDR’s Second Bill of Rights was made part of Germany and Japan’s Constitution and they have been more egalitarian and stable as a result. Institutions put in place, the UN, Nuremberg, were intended to stop war. Republicans are working tirelessly to undermine these institutions.
Tapes of activity at Guantanamo are so disgusting that they are ‘classified’, but Republicans refuse to close Guantanamo.
We know from Snowden that the NSA collects bulk communications of all types. We have built the world’s most complete surveillance system ever. Everyone’s messages are gathered and stored, and so were Trumps. This system was put in place in secret, authorized by the secret FISA Court, and is sure to kill the law, and any democracy that might remain.
As immigrants, people willing to stand in the sun and pick crops, are rounded up and deported there will be new profits for private prisons at the cost of humanitarian crisis. There is sure to be a drop in the number of foreign students and tourists who plan to come here. Ignoring the climate threat will make food shortages a sure thing.
Republican Fascists are working to cement their gains for the next election. There is no reason to think that the system is self-correcting. Brisk sales of dystopian novels may be a warning about the future.
Note: some of the following paraphrased from Stieg Larsson's "The Expo Files";
extreme right groups preach that immigration
is a threat to culture.
What is meant by 'culture' is never defined, but there is an underlying
presumption that our culture is better than their culture. They also
claim that immigration costs the country fantastic amounts. There is
great reluctance to pay for any social programs, instead resources are
designated for the military.
They engage in hate speech
to stir up racist attitudes that already exist.
Racism, in their case anti-Semitism, was the seed that later bloomed as Nazism in Germany, and led to the 'final solution'. It is likely
a large part of the reason Trump was elected.
They want borders that are impenetrable along with military that can punish any violators.
They claim to be exceptional. (No one is exceptional.)
Therefore, they want to impose their culture everywhere. They will do it
by force and that requires that the military expand. The U.S. has the
world's largest military and it is expanding. So is the empire.
Corporate concentration is one of the forces that contributes to a political takeover. Government by corporations is defined as Fascism.
Income inequality is at the root of the problem.
It appears with the election of Trump that
Fascism is coming home to the U.S. All the elements are in place. In
history, every empire is destroyed. This time with a huge nuclear
arsenal, it will occur much faster than ever before and the devastation
will be far worse.
Center for Right-Wing Studies
Right Wing Watch
Political Research Associates
Americans Against The Tea Party
Vast Right Wing Conspiracy
Southern Poverty Law Center
Modern Malitia Movement (MIAC Report))
Southern Poverty Law Center
The Authoritarians: Bob Altemeyer (Download the Free Book).
Right-Wing Populism in America: Too Close for Comfort: Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons (extensive resources.)
Machine: A Field Guide to the Resurgent Right: Lee Fang
Over the Cliff, How Obama's Election Drove the Right Insane: John Amata and David Neiwert
Outright Barbarous: How the Violent Language of the Right
Poisons American Democracy by
Stieg Larson, the Real Story of the Man Who Played With Fire: Jan-Erik Petersson
Expo Files: Stieg Larsson