Saturday, May 01, 2004

The face of evil

How can we look at the face of war and not see its evil? How can we especially not see the evil of this war in Iraq? Every bit of news coming out of there is worse than the one before and it is not because of the Iraqis.

What's being done to those prisoners is what I might expect to read in a history book about the Nazis or Mussolini's minions. It brings a vision of the SS. It is part of a growing fascism in our government, in our leadership.

I read this from "What is Fascism," at a holocaust remembrance site (
What is Fascism. I added comments of my own.

Fascism and Nazism as ideologies involve, to varying degrees, some of the following hallmarks:

*** Nationalism and super-patriotism with a sense of historic mission.
Yup. It's our manifest destiny, as the nation chosen by God to whup them furriners.

*** Aggressive militarism even to the extent of glorifying war as good for the national or individual spirit.
We don't need the UN. We'll just go in and whup 'em.

*** Use of violence or threats of violence to impose views on others (fascism and Nazism both employed street violence and state violence at different moments in their development).
Well, they were being unpatriotic, weren't they?

*** Authoritarian reliance on a leader or elite not constitutionally responsible to an electorate.
Don't think the prez or v.p. either feel "responsible to an electorate."

*** Cult of personality around a charismatic leader.
Dubya wishes he could be charismatic.

*** Reaction against the values of Modernism, usually with emotional attacks against both liberalism and communism.
"We need to get back to the inerrancy of Scripture -- as interpreted by me."

*** Exhortations for the homogeneous masses of common folk (Volkish in German, Populist in the U.S.) to join voluntarily in a heroic mission_often metaphysical and romanticized in character.
Well, they're going to bring back the draft because they can't get enough "common folk" to volunteer. But that football player who turned down a pro-football contract to go fight exemplifies the romanticized image of the hero on a mission, and the administration certainly used that -- while not wanting us to see the flag-draped coffins of the "common folk." Not that he wasn't sincere in his patriotism.

*** Dehumanization and scapegoating of the enemy -- seeing the enemy as an inferior or subhuman force, perhaps involved in a conspiracy that justifies eradicating them.
This is what we are seeing with the mistreatment of prisoners now.

*** The self image of being a superior form of social organization beyond socialism, capitalism and democracy.
Yup. That divine mandate stuff.

*** Elements of national socialist ideological roots, for example, ostensible support for the industrial working class or farmers; but ultimately, the forging of an alliance with an elite sector of society.
As in Dubya's economic theories?

*** Abandonment of any consistent ideology in a drive for state power.
Yeah, whatever it takes to win. Say and do anything.

Listen, people. Watch out for those electronic voting machines that seem to have a will of their own, that come up with odd results. These are the same machines that are built, maintained and programmed by companies whose owners and directors will help Dubya get re-elected by any means.

In identifying "goodness" and "superiority" with "us," there was a tendency to identify "evil" with "them." This process involves scapegoating and dehumanization. It was then an easy step to blame all societal problems on "them," and presuppose a conspiracy of these evildoers which had emasculated and humiliated the idealized core group of the nation. To solve society's problems one need only unmask the conspirators and eliminate them.

This last paragraph describes what's happening in the church: having those "sodomites." as one right-wing blogger calls them, in the church makes the homophobes feel "emasculated." Get rid of them. They're going to destroy our families and the institution of marriage and corrupt our children. Gay/lesbian folk seem to be responsible for every social ill in this country.

Found this at a Dennis Kucinich support group site. Hope they'll do more for the Democratic Party in the election -- this is good stuff. Take a look: 12 warning signs of fascism

Does anyone else see not just creeping, but galloping fascism taking hold of our culture? Or how deeply the religious right and the political right are meshing together in our country, and how dangerous this is to freedom?

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