Wednesday, February 23, 2005


As I write this, I feel the self-conscious and the cliche "liberal" creeping around. I think that there's a lot more to the current political situation than conspiratorial "big-money"manipulating the puppet strings of our political process to advance corporatist agendas. However, the link I read tonite via Brad DeLong's blog was a nice reappraisal of fascism in the 21st century and the miniscule elements lacking to call the right wing "brown shirts." An excerpt:

... [E]ach national variant of fascism draws its legitimacy, as we shall see, not from some universal scripture but from what it considers the most authentic elements of its own community identity. Religion, for example, would certainly play a much larger role in an authentic fascism in the United States than in the first European fascisms, which were pagan for contingent historical reasons.

Anyone able to talk about how the right wing has assembled the disparate elements of Libertarian militiamen and Evangelical Christians into a voting critical mass? The political ideologies seem contradictory.


Drew said...

I don't know that the right's coalition is best described as evangelicals+militiamen any more than the left is best characterized as, say, enviromentalists+feminists.

However, both evangelicals and militias are more inclined to be suspicious than enthusiastic about governments and voting. Which isn't that different from the suspicion many on the left have about government (remember the endless whining about Clinton by the left during his 8 years?)

One aspect that I think helps the right is that their message focuses on "look out for yourself" whereas the left tends to emphasize "look out for one another". I'm guessing that the evangelicals and the militias don't think of themselves as coming together, even though they might vote in the same way.

loachapoka said...

I think that there is a deeper connection among the conservatives, religious extremists, fascists and other repressive philosophies. They cater to humans with paranoia. These people are scared of people who are different, of change in general, and of not being in control of other people and their cultural context. All these repressive systems offer stability, supression and control of "the enemy" (be it jews, muslims, Afro-Americans, gays . . .), empowerment of the loyal followers, and vigorous defense of the own system of values and possesions.
See also my blog entry on conservativism.