Jump to content


Getting an "Insecure Connection" warning for Exisle? No worry

Details in this thread

Fascist America, in 10 easy steps

Politics 2007 Op-Ed The Guardian American Fascism

  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 Cait

Cait

    Democracy Dies in Darkness

  • Moderator
  • 10,810 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 02:11 PM

I recognize that even posting this will be greeted as alarmist.  I know it.  Still, with the things that have happened in our country, it begs at least a little attention.  I'd rather be an alarmist and be wrong, than to let it all go by and never say a word.

Follow the link for the 10 easy steps.  

The Guardian

Quote

Fascist America, in 10 easy steps
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

Tuesday April 24, 2007
The Guardian

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.
As difficult as this is to contemplate, it is clear, if you are willing to look, that each of these 10 steps has already been initiated today in the United States by the Bush administration.

Because Americans like me were born in freedom, we have a hard time even considering that it is possible for us to become as unfree - domestically - as many other nations. Because we no longer learn much about our rights or our system of government - the task of being aware of the constitution has been outsourced from citizens' ownership to being the domain of professionals such as lawyers and professors - we scarcely recognise the checks and balances that the founders put in place, even as they are being systematically dismantled. Because we don't learn much about European history, the setting up of a department of "homeland" security - remember who else was keen on the word "homeland" - didn't raise the alarm bells it might have.

It is my argument that, beneath our very noses, George Bush and his administration are using time-tested tactics to close down an open society. It is time for us to be willing to think the unthinkable - as the author and political journalist Joe Conason, has put it, that it can happen here. And that we are further along than we realise.

Conason eloquently warned of the danger of American authoritarianism. I am arguing that we need also to look at the lessons of European and other kinds of fascism to understand the potential seriousness of the events we see unfolding in the US.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#2 Zwolf

Zwolf
  • Islander
  • 3,683 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 03:03 PM

Quote

I recognize that even posting this will be greeted as alarmist. I know it. Still, with the things that have happened in our country, it begs at least a little attention. I'd rather be an alarmist and be wrong, than to let it all go by and never say a word.

They say the unexamined life isn't worth living, and they're probably right about that... so, I think it's good to stay alert for these things.  It's a lot harder to sneak something by a paranoid... :)

I don't think we've had a shift to fascism, but that we've had a shift toward it is pretty clear.   I don't think we're there yet, and hope we never do get there, but we've been sliding more toward that direction recently than we used to.  The scary thing is, I know of some people who would welcome it.

Everything on the list has been done, except the key is remembering to what extent it's been done.  Such as, "Control the press."  In the case of FOX, oh yeah, totally.  They tiptoe around being the propaganda wing of the Bush administration just enough to allow those who want them to be credible to maintain their illusion.  "I distinctly remember Brit Hume criticizing Bush's judgement on a minor matter once, back in May of 2002, I think it was, so, see, they're not shills!"   But FOX isn't considered a really legit news agency by many.  I know some conservatives who even admit it's propaganda, but, they like it.   As for the other news networks, ehhh, they're gutless and servile and too-easily-bullied, but that's more their own fault than the fault of "state control."  And it's not a clampdown.  You've still got Keith Olbermann, and anybody who watched The Daily Show and watched Jon Stewart's beautifully handled b-slappin' of McCain and all he's been going along with (anybody who missed it really should check it out online or catch the re-run tonight at 7 central... it was like hardcore porn for people who get off on hearing truth!) last night will know that there are still some networks out there with a pair. :)

It's the same with the other 9 points... they've been done, but to limited extents.  So, I don't think we're anywhere near fascism yet.

But, like I always say, it's best to start dealing with the snowball while it's still at the top of the hill...

Cheers,

Zwolf
"I've moved on and I'm feeling fine
And I'll feel even better
When your life has nothing to do with mine."
-Pittbull, "No Love Lost"

"There are things that I'd like to say
But I'm never talking to you again
There's things I'd like to phrase some way
But I'm never talking to you again

I'm never talking to you again
I'm never talking to you
I'm tired of wasting all my time
Trying to talk to you

I'd put you down where you belong
But I'm never talking to you again
I'd show you everywhere you're wrong
But I'm never talking to you again

I'm never talking to you again
I'm never talking to you
I'm tired of wasting all my time
Trying to talk to you

I'm never talking to you again
I'm never talking to you
I'm tired of wasting all my time
Trying to talk to you."
- Husker Du, "Never Talking To You Again"

#3 Cait

Cait

    Democracy Dies in Darkness

  • Moderator
  • 10,810 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 03:12 PM

Thanks for such a thoughtful reply.  I agree with almost everything you've said.  

I think I might be more alarmed because I see the seeds planted that can be used at any time.  It' like a Chess game in many ways.  You set up a defense/offense, you use your pawns, and set the board up in a certain way to 'win the game'.  At the beginning it doesn't look like much at all.  Even in the middle game, it still looks innocent enough.  Until you get to the endgame when all the pieces of the game come together to capture the King.

Too many pieces have been put in place not to stay vigilant from now on.  I do hope that Americans would yell loud enough to make this kind of thing impossible.  I hope the Press stays free enough to inform us.  I hope politicians remain independent enough to rise to the occasion.  But, I'll be honest, the rise of outsourcing government to corporations, and the role of corporations in the war, lobbyists in DC, and in our lives.. well it makes fascism a likely outcome if we don't stay vigilant.

And that's my opinion and I'm sticking to it.  LOL

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#4 SparkyCola

SparkyCola
  • Islander
  • 14,904 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 04:34 PM

I probably have no right commenting here, not being American, but...I will anyway :angel_not:

I agree with Zwolf ^

I think though, it's very easy to say "Well, they may have done this...but they couldn't POSSIBLY go the whole way." i.e. "They may have taken over SOME of the press, but I can't imagine there not being an outcry at closing down the Daily Show - because it's hilarious and kicks butt!" - and indeed, it's very hard to imagine there not being an outcry at such a thing (still think Jon Stewart should be president :whistle: ) but once you start going down that road...once it starts to slip....

Well in my opinion I'd rather stay well away from it. That's why I'm so anti the talking CCTV cameras. It's starting to slip in a direction I don't like, and being a computer scientist I know better than to say anything can "never happen" - I'm sure historians feel the same way.

Cait, it's good to vigilant about the direction things are heading in. No one can predict the future, but looking around you and thinking through the next logical steps is as close as you can get I imagine. I'm personally very concerned about Guantanamo Bay and the implications it has. I'm also concerned about the fear-mongering - I can only attribute Bush's re-election to the power fear has over people, and that worries me.

Sparky
Able to entertain a thought without taking it home to meet the parents

#5 scherzo

scherzo

    I know things

  • Islander
  • 3,388 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 04:46 PM

Quote

I recognize that even posting this will be greeted as alarmist. I know it. Still, with the things that have happened in our country, it begs at least a little attention. I'd rather be an alarmist and be wrong, than to let it all go by and never say a word.
Someone posting a breathless article in favor of the Patriot Act, could string these exact same words together without a single edit. But then of course it would be FEAR MONGERING.  :o Hopefully it wouldn't be backed up with tin foil headed nonsense, like the above blather from the super-socialists of the Guardian.  :rolleyes:

-scherzo
"Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant; it's just that they know so much that isn't so."    -Ronald Reagan, October 27 1964
Posted Image

#6 Godeskian

Godeskian

    You'll be seein' rainbooms

  • Islander
  • 26,839 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 05:24 PM

Nobody ever thinks it can happen to them. That's a pattern that repeats through the entirity of recorded history.

Defy Gravity!


The Doctor: The universe is big. It's vast and complicated and ridiculous and sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles... and that's a theory. Nine hundred years and I've never seen one yet, but this will do me.


#7 Spectacles

Spectacles
  • Awaiting Authorisation
  • 9,632 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 05:37 PM

Concern about the fascist tendencies in some elements of American society is not something that merely the "socialists" at the Guardian have commented on. The American Conservative carried several essays on this theme in the Fall of 2004 and Winter of 2005. In fact, traditional conservatives, under vicious attack by the neoconservative Bush loyalists that have been bred by talk radio, were very concerned. They're probably feeling a little better these days as more people have backed off the Bush bandwagon. But here's a piece from Paul Craig Roberts from 2004:

http://www.antiwar.c...?articleid=3798

Roberts, by the way, is former assistant Treasury Secretary under Reagan and a former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal.
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#8 Cait

Cait

    Democracy Dies in Darkness

  • Moderator
  • 10,810 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 06:09 PM

Quote

By substituting fiction for reality, the U.S. media took the country to war. The CNN and Fox News "journalists" are as responsible for America's ill-fated invasion of Iraq as Cheney and Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and Perle.

With a sizable percentage of the U.S. population now addicted to daily confirmations of their resentments and hatreds, U.S. policy will be increasingly driven by tightly made-up minds in pursuit of unrealistic agendas.

American troops are in Iraq on false pretenses. No one knows all the fateful consequences of this mistaken adventure. Bush's reelection would be seen as a vindication of aggression, and more aggression would likely follow. A continuing expenditure of blood, money, alliances, good will, and civil liberties is not a future to which to look forward.

WOW!  Good piece.  Thanks for the link.

I don't know if it is encouraging or not.  Finding out that this has been a topic for a few years now--yet no one has seen the events *since* Bush's re-election for what they could mean.  Somehow it makes me even more concerned, because it is obvious that it's not the President that is in a state of denial, it's the country.  Polls aside, there are enough people who have been validated for their anger that it is now the "new reality".

Makes it pretty scary for contrary voices to be heard.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#9 Cait

Cait

    Democracy Dies in Darkness

  • Moderator
  • 10,810 posts

Posted 25 April 2007 - 06:11 PM

View Postscherzo, on Apr 25 2007, 02:46 PM, said:

Quote

I recognize that even posting this will be greeted as alarmist. I know it. Still, with the things that have happened in our country, it begs at least a little attention. I'd rather be an alarmist and be wrong, than to let it all go by and never say a word.
Someone posting a breathless article in favor of the Patriot Act, could string these exact same words together without a single edit. But then of course it would be FEAR MONGERING.  :o Hopefully it wouldn't be backed up with tin foil headed nonsense, like the above blather from the super-socialists of the Guardian.  :rolleyes:

-scherzo

It's nice to know I can always count on you for that slap in the face.   :rolleyes:

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#10 Captain Jack

Captain Jack

    Where's the rum?

  • Islander
  • 14,914 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 12:44 AM

View PostGodeskian, on Apr 25 2007, 03:24 PM, said:

Nobody ever thinks it can happen to them. That's a pattern that repeats through the entirity of recorded history.

Very true.

Cait, why do you think I get all bent out of shape when I read about laws proposed to place restrictions and/or bans on our freedoms, and what we can and can not have or do.  It doesn't have to come in a form of one giant, swift take-over, it can come one tiny bit at a time.  Subtle, but steady.  And, before we know it, we're stripped of our freedoms and it will be too late.  American people are too complacent, and take their lives for granted.  This is when we are most vulnerable, and people with less than good intentions can smell that a mile away.
Posted Image
689 Reasons to Defeat Barack Obama in 2012:

https://www.national...at-barack-obama

#11 RobL

RobL

  • Dead account
  • 3,383 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 01:05 AM

I'd say my peace, but then I'm trying to stay out of trouble. Needless to say, I disagree with the idea that the U.S. is becoming a Facist Dictatorship. First, if we were, our boarders would be a hell of a lot more secured. And that's just for starters.

Bring back Darthsikle!


#12 Captain Jack

Captain Jack

    Where's the rum?

  • Islander
  • 14,914 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 02:20 AM

View PostRobL, on Apr 25 2007, 11:05 PM, said:

I'd say my peace, but then I'm trying to stay out of trouble. Needless to say, I disagree with the idea that the U.S. is becoming a Facist Dictatorship. First, if we were, our boarders would be a hell of a lot more secured. And that's just for starters.

Interesting point.  I didn't think about that.
Posted Image
689 Reasons to Defeat Barack Obama in 2012:

https://www.national...at-barack-obama

#13 Cait

Cait

    Democracy Dies in Darkness

  • Moderator
  • 10,810 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 02:37 AM

View PostRobL, on Apr 25 2007, 11:05 PM, said:

I'd say my peace, but then I'm trying to stay out of trouble. Needless to say, I disagree with the idea that the U.S. is becoming a Fascist Dictatorship. First, if we were, our boarders would be a hell of a lot more secured. And that's just for starters.

Except that's not necessarily true.  

No, one is making a comparison between what might be the beginnings of  fascist state here and other states in history.  That's not what's being said, and that would be alarmist.  No one is saying that Nazi Germany is right around the corner.

That said, fascism is defined as: A political system in which all power of government is vested in a person or group with no other power to balance and limit the activities of the government. Fascist governments are often closely associated with large corporations and sometimes with extreme nationalism and racist activities. Modern fascism is often called "CORPORATISM".

The boarders aren't closed because Corporations wand and need cheap labor.  That's the reason no one has done anything about it in this administration.  The GOP base wants the boarders closed to be sure, but the Corporations don't.  They don't want to have to pay reasonable labor costs.

So, the fact that the boarders aren't closed isn't an indicator.  Although like I said, I'm not saying that Nazi Germany is right around the corner.  I'm saying that a lot of the tactics illustrated in the article have been implemented by this Administration at one time or another.  I'm also saying that the laws have been changed so that more *could* be done.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#14 RobL

RobL

  • Dead account
  • 3,383 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 03:09 AM

Quote

That said, fascism is defined as: A political system in which all power of government is vested in a person or group with no other power to balance and limit the activities of the government.

Even with that definition, we are nowhere near facisim in this country. Witness: The last midterm elections. The recent Alberto Gonzales debacle. On and on.

Besides, if what you argue is correct, all the Bush haters will rally in the 08 election and elect someone who will overturn all he's set into motion the last few years.

Bring back Darthsikle!


#15 sierraleone

sierraleone

    All things Great and Mischievous

  • Islander
  • 9,226 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 07:40 AM

^ Its one thing for a new President to not do what Bush is doing, its another to reverse the laws that allowed him to do it. Those seeds will always be there until the legislator reverses them will they not? And the president can veto that unless they have 2/3 majority.
So a President at some point in the future can choose to pick them up and run with them later.
Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.
- Masha Gessen
Source: http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html

#16 Spectacles

Spectacles
  • Awaiting Authorisation
  • 9,632 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 07:52 AM

Quote

Cait: Although like I said, I'm not saying that Nazi Germany is right around the corner.

Michael Ledeen, who is a prominent neoconservative, actually is a scholar of Italian fascism. While he condemns Mussolini, he seems to appreciate the Italian fascist movement--which he distinguishes from the Mussolini regime.


http://www.amconmag....03/feature.html

Ledeen is a contributing editor to National Review and is a fellow at the neoconservative-heavy American Enterprise Institute. While he's written many essays critical of "Islamist fascism," he himself seems to have been influenced in his vision of our right to "creative destruction" by the Italian fascists.

It's pretty disturbing really to realize how an influential American neoconservative borrows a good bit from Italian fascism, which as he himself has written is a different animal from Nazi fascism.
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#17 Broph

Broph
  • Islander
  • 6,671 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 08:30 AM

View PostCait, on Apr 25 2007, 07:11 PM, said:

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.

So if a group of people comes in and says "your government is no longer; we are your government", then what does the Constitution mean anymore?

#18 Zwolf

Zwolf
  • Islander
  • 3,683 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 08:59 AM

I don't think this brand of somewhat-maybe-kinda-fascist-like rulers want to tighten the borders too much, because they want that ready availability of cheap, exploitable labor.  They already hate workers' unions, and what's more union-proof than border-jumpers?  They'll take whatever kind of pay or treatment they can get, just to avoid being deported.    Bush is in a pretty sticky situation there... his constituency (and not only his constituency, 'cuz I'm in there, too) is highly interested in tight, secure borders.   His corporate buddies, however, are highly interested in filling their factories with the-next-best-thng-to-slave-labor, and illegals are even better than outsourcing; saves on shipping.   So, Bush has to talk up tighter borders and make it look like he's doing something... while really doing nothing.

Oh, and for the creeping fascism... Bush may have greased the skids and sped it up a lot, but I don't think it's a problem that's limited to just him.  Every administration, Republican or Democrat, tries to sneak in more and more control over the populace, gradually, the way rust works.  Bush just has less patience with it than most, and saw an opportunity in 9/11 and seized on it.  You can count on whoever comes next - Repub or Dem - to either abolish none of what he's done, or to do away with a token amount to make it look good.

Cheers,

Zwolf
"I've moved on and I'm feeling fine
And I'll feel even better
When your life has nothing to do with mine."
-Pittbull, "No Love Lost"

"There are things that I'd like to say
But I'm never talking to you again
There's things I'd like to phrase some way
But I'm never talking to you again

I'm never talking to you again
I'm never talking to you
I'm tired of wasting all my time
Trying to talk to you

I'd put you down where you belong
But I'm never talking to you again
I'd show you everywhere you're wrong
But I'm never talking to you again

I'm never talking to you again
I'm never talking to you
I'm tired of wasting all my time
Trying to talk to you

I'm never talking to you again
I'm never talking to you
I'm tired of wasting all my time
Trying to talk to you."
- Husker Du, "Never Talking To You Again"

#19 Nonny

Nonny

    Scourge of Pretentious Bad Latin

  • Islander
  • 31,142 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 09:51 AM

View Postsierraleone, on Apr 26 2007, 05:40 AM, said:

^ Its one thing for a new President to not do what Bush is doing, its another to reverse the laws that allowed him to do it. Those seeds will always be there until the legislator reverses them will they not? And the president can veto that unless they have 2/3 majority.
So a President at some point in the future can choose to pick them up and run with them later.
Sigh.  The 60's was a good time to be young.  This is a good time to be old.   :(

Nonny
Posted Image


The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#20 G1223

G1223

    The Blunt Object.

  • Dead account
  • 16,164 posts

Posted 26 April 2007 - 10:03 AM

President Lincoln suspended Habis Courpus. Considered placing the US Supreme court into jail. HAd several democrats placed in jail or at least federal custody.

Those steps are also the steps that if during a State of the Union Address a guy drops a jet on Congress like Tom Clancy talked about in his book"Debt of Honor" then Till a new congress can be called toghere the power will reside in one man's hands.

What we as a nation need to do try and find people we can trust to do a  good job as custodians for the next group to follow them. And those that follow that group.

If we become a facist state it will because of voter apathy. And the cooperative efforts of both parties.
If you encounter any Trolls. You really must not forget them.
And if you want to save these shores. For Pity sake Don't Trust them.
paraphrased from H. "Breaker" Morant

TANSTAAFL
If you voted for Obama then all the mistakes he makes are your fault and I will point this out to you every time he does mess up.

When the fall is all that remains. It matters a great deal.

All hail the clich's all emcompassing shadow.

My playing well with other's skill has been vastly overrated

Member of the Order of the Knigths of the Woeful Countance.



Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Politics, 2007, Op-Ed, The Guardian, American Fascism

0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users