is how fascism comes to America (5/18/2016)
More Lies from the Bush Fascists (Paul Craig Roberts) 2/22/2008
So here's the question: Can what happened in Germany in the 1930's (and '40s) happen here ? Look carefully at these 14 points of Fascism. It is the sheepish submissiveness that leads to creeping fascism.
The dictionary definition of
government controlled by corporations.
Hmm. We seem to have that. Then there are the other characteristics: the exceptionalism, the zenophobia, the justification of pre-emptive war, the media propaganda, the underclass (racial or economic.) the universal surveillance, mass incarceration, the erosion of civil liberties, the militarization, the drive for empire, and don't we have all of those ?
George W Bush's grandfather participated in the failed coup of business titans against President Roosevelt. They had planned to replace our democracy with a fascist regime modeled after Adolf Hitler's.
Let's not make the same mistake (video).
"...the combination of huge standing armies, almost continuous wars, military Keynesianism, and ruinous military expenses have destroyed our republican structure in favor of an imperial presidency. We are on the cusp of losing our democracy for the sake of keeping our empire. Once a nation is started down that path, the dynamics that apply to all empires come into play - isolation, overstretch, the uniting of forces opposed to imperialism, and bankruptcy. Nemesis stalks our life as a free nation." from Chalmers Johnson's book 'Nemesis' subtitled 'the last days of the American republic.
Germany was certainly an advanced country, but major media helped to put in place a head of state who increasingly demanded more power. Here the FCC, with strong Bush backing, is working to further consolidate media so that a small number of favored corporations can provide only the official story. Media concentration means that only the official word is broadcast, and it is done by a lap-dog, corporate press. Cable news broadcasts are hatchet jobs on Democrats. US major media were cheerleaders for the war in Iraq even though most of the public had strong doubts. Media dissidents were suppressed. So much for a free press. The first amendment has been shredded.
"Fascism should more appropriately be called CORPORATISM because it is a merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini (from Encyclopedia Italiana, Giovanni Gentile, editor). It is no surprise that Corporations are writing our new laws: making bankruptcy harsher, undermining environmental safeguards, making prescription cost uncontrollable, weakening food safety, concentrating media, undermining union organizing, and in general asserting the most regressive policy ever pursued by so-called 'Christians'. Repeal of the estate tax will benefit only the very wealthiest (which tells you who is really running the show.) It appears that all of our regulatory agencies have been taken over by the industries that they are supposed to control. It is accompanied by super patriotism.
As in Germany, a terrorist incident became the pretext for a pre-emptive war. (See 9/11) The Germans staged an Anshluss, where the US invaded Iraq in 'Shock and awe'. At Nuremberg pre-emptive war was regarded as a war crime. The pretexts for war in Iraq have all been found false. Major media didn't bother to notice. If 'democracy' were healthier in the US, it might be more credible as a motive for war in Iraq, but it has its problems in the US as well. Congress all but abandoned its Constitutional obligation to determine when we go to war, just as it failed to act as a check on the Presidency.
The U.S. Supreme Court has
been the primary enabler of Fascism. Decisions for Corporate supremacy,
selection of Bush Jr, nullification of
the voting rights act and others
removed government from the people and gave it to the corporations. That is Fascism, by
Bush, in signing statements, asserted that he can challenge or ignore laws passed by the Congress. He has ignored international law when it does not suit him. His ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, who was appointed in spite of the Senate, made ultimatums. Bush proclaimed "You're either with us or against us." Since Congress did no oversight, war profiteering, privatizing, torture, rendition, were accomplished in secrecy. Secrecy is, of course, a major restraint to democracy. Although Presidential power expanded as soon as he was able to declare a state of war, the power of the office has expanded with the line item veto, fast track authority, lack of Congressional oversight, Bush minions have been justifying an imperial presidency. Diplomacy is forgotten and the Pentagon has taken control. Constitutional checks have been all but eliminated.
Military spending has increased to a level that dominates the economy. Many of the previously civilian functions are becoming militarized: border security, public health, ... We spend more on our standing army than the rest of the world combined. Eisenhower warned about allowing the military-industrial complex to grow out of control, but our media has a very short memory and rewrites history to specification.
Since military spending is so out of control, health care,
higher education, pensions, and other social programs are drying
up. Bush's plan to privatize Social
Security was largely recognized for what it is, a plan to
further weaken a fairly solvent program that would ultimately
destroy it. Wall street brokerages would create millions of new
accounts though, and they would be the major beneficiary. All plans
to 'reform' Social Security will result in cuts. US industry has
largely migrated to low wage countries. Wealth
trickled up and most of the people sunk.
Civil liberties have been severely curtailed. The "Patriot Act" allows the government to monitor borrowings at public libraries, telephone companies turned over their records for data mining, internet search history has been turned over with little objection. The Congress has passed a bill that requires States to issue drivers licenses with RFID tags that will allow everyone to be tracked. Bush claims the right to monitor phone calls without court oversight. Commercial records from credit cards and so on, formerly kept from the government, are now resources for data mining as well. Regularly we read about entire databases of personal records that have been stolen, but our politicians don't think we need the privacy protections that are demanded in Europe. The passive, pacified electorate has not demanded it.
The wall came down in Berlin years ago, but who would have imagined that they would be built again on US borders ? US Concentration camps are being readied as well. Watch what you say. Republicans always need a victim to blame and they have created one in the form of the 'illegal alien'. Immediately we have an underclass of millions of people who will lose any rights that the Constitution might have defended. Rather like the Germans did to their underclass.
Bush and the "Neocons" that accompanied him, have publicly declared their intention to reshape the middle east. Chalmers Johnson describes hundreds of military bases scattered throughout the world, and concludes that the US is building an empire. Most people don't think about it. We didn't vote for empire, and it is a very bad idea, but our politicians think we won't notice. It is no surprise that Bush has promised a long, endless, war.
Like Hitler, Bush cast himself as a religious savior. His general has said that his god is bigger than the Muslim god, so we have been thrown back to the crusades. Kevin Philips and others have opined that we are headed for a theocracy. The war can easily be mistaken for another crusade.
Scientists who do not agree with the Republican doctrine are dismissed. The GOP denies global warming.
The US now meets all of the criteria for a fascist state: readiness for a strong dictator, a government that grossly violates human rights, corporate control of all branches of government, degraded civil liberties as a result of the "Patriot Act", the large bureacracy that is the national security state, a military that takes resources from all other public purposes, media that has all of the qualities of journalism that we deplored in Pravda, sham elections, a corporate oligarchy that rules for their own profit, and an expanding empire.
We are at a point, reminiscent of past great empires, where a single strong-man claims power, where the legislature becomes ineffective, where civil liberties melt away, where the military becomes the dominant power, where we embark on an endless war, where the government goes broke, where the domestic economy becomes one of bread and circuses, and then, sometime after that, we will be destroyed. The obvious lessons of war in the last century are that they are rapidly becoming more destructive. The rest of the world is angry. What happened to Germany in 1945 could be much worse here if we continue on the current course. Every empire in history has come to a sad end. Why should it be different this time ?
...we can look forward with confidence to character-building bankruptcies, picturesque bread riots, thrilling cavalcades of splendidly costumed motorcycle police. Lewis Lapham (Harper's Magazine Oct. 2005)
"When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag, carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis (1935)
Authoritarians: Bob Altemeyer (Download the pdf.)
Have a look.
That's why we should see that Republicans are removed from office.
The Bush-Hitler Connection (video)
A status report: Idaho Observer- Police state USA
Chuck Baldwin's comments.
Originally published by the Guardian.
your copy of Naomi Wolf's "The End
America: A Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot."
From Hitler to Pinochet and beyond, history shows there are certain steps that any would-be dictator must take to destroy constitutional freedoms. And, argues Naomi Wolf, George Bush and his administration seem to be taking them all:
Last autumn, there was a military coup in Thailand. The leaders of the coup took a number of steps, rather systematically, as if they had a shopping list. In a sense, they did. Within a matter of days, democracy had been closed down: the coup leaders declared martial law, sent armed soldiers into residential areas, took over radio and TV stations, issued restrictions on the press, tightened some limits on travel, and took certain activists into custody.
They were not figuring these things out as they went along. If you look at history, you can see that there is essentially a blueprint for turning an open society into a dictatorship. That blueprint has been used again and again in more and less bloody, more and less terrifying ways. But it is always effective. It is very difficult and arduous to create and sustain a democracy - but history shows that closing one down is much simpler. You simply have to be willing to take the 10 steps. [more]
By Paul Craig Roberts The Bush-Cheney regime is America's first neoconservative regime. In a few short years, the regime has destroyed the Bill of Rights, the separation of powers, the Geneva Conventions, and the remains of America's moral reputation along with the infrastructures of two Muslim countries and countless thousands of Islamic civilians. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article17216.htm
America: Freedom to Fascism (the Film)
Bush used war to expand the power of the Presidency, cloaked his activities in secrecy, engaged in illegal conduct including torture, wiretapping, renditions, He destroyed critical records so that there would be no trail. He denied Congress access to information so that there would be no oversight. When there was a call to investigate, as after 9/11, staffing was carefully done to whitewash. Congress acquiesced. Corporations ruled. The Military budget took off and is still headed upward.
Bush's lasting legacy are his appointees to the
Supreme Court, who have made corporatesupremacy the law.
Obama has not rolled back much of it, not even the stain of Guantanamo
So there is a legitimate concern that we can be overcome by fascism. We are on a trajectory for a strong-man head of state, an empire that necessitates an overwhelming military, a severe curtailment of civil liberties, unrestrained corporate power, social programs that ignore the general welfare, unrestrained police power, elections that are of doubtful integrity, and right-wing media that keeps us ignorant and pacified. We are overextended not just financially, but in many ways. Environmental collapse is likely in this century.
It is not clear what would make our institutions respond to people, but I see no counter to all this bad news.
By Umberto Eco, The New York Review of Books, June 22, 1995
The End of America: Naomi Wolf (Watch it on-line for free.)
GOP Fascism: Chris Hedges
Battlefield America: the War on the American People: John W.Whitehead
Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted
Totalitarianism: Sheldon S. Wolin
American Swastika: Charles Higham
and Polarization in American Politics: Marc
Hetherington and Jonathan Weiler
America: Naomi Wolf
Facing Fascism: Jerry Sorlucco
Bloodthirsty Bitches and Pious Pimps of Power: Gerry Spence
When Corporations Rule the World: David Korten
It Can Happen Here: Authoritarian Peril in the Age of Bush: Joe Conason.
Iron Fists: Branding the 20th Century Totalitarian State: Steven Heller
It Can't Happen Here: Sinclair Lewis
Fascism in Action: A Documented Study and Analysis of Fascism in Europe (Free to Download)