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Fascism and the American Elite

December 21, 2015

In 1976 I had the wonderful experience of teaching a course called “Freedom and Responsibility in America,” along with colleagues in History (American), Philosophy (critical reasoning), and Political Science (American government). (I taught American literature.) Of course we faculty members (and most of the students too, having elected this 16-credit package) read the entire booklist.

Thus I read The Irony of Democracy, in which Thomas R. Dye and Harmon Zeigler explain that the irony is that democracies must be led by elites, and thus, that when our democracy is vitally threatened, we the people depend on our elites to save it.

My argument in this episode on “Fascism (American Style)” is that our elite is now dominated by persons who do not favor a democratic form of government, but rather they are proto-fascists who are the vital threat to our democracy. They include billionaires, notably the Koch Bros (NLC) and Donald Trump, who are interested only in themselves and who are attempting to use the power of their billions, by way of monopoly corporatism and the Republican Party, to dominate American society and government.

In short, they want to own us.

They will not save our democracy, they will destroy it. If we give them the chance.

The author of the present novel wrote about what Fascism is, and particularly “F (American Style)” in 2011, in connection with the Occupy movement, and I want to recommend that page. You’ll hear bells ringing—alarm bells.

Given the current Trumpmania, one has to wonder whether, after all, our style of fascism would be very different from that of Europe in ‘30s Italy and even Germany.

We’re going to have to save ourselves, and that may well require a “political revolution.”

[Page 1 of this episode of FAS, page 2 (incl Paul Krugman’s early warning about Trump)]

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