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What Is “Fascism American Style”?

November 21, 2016

[5-11-17 Update:  Hair Trompf is showing us a classic feature within his American style of fascism:  the strongman authoritarian.

This morning Amy Goodman interviewed (from Seattle) Ruth Ben-Ghiat, and Seattle’s own socialist City Council member, Kshama Sawant, on T as an authoritarian ruler.  Here is the Transcript, incl tactics strongmen use while they are building their strength, e.g. bonds of personal loyalty, messaging of violence and lawlessness, testing and pushing limits, total politicization, shock.

Ben-Ghiat is a widely published historian of Italian fascism and is writing a book about authoritarian rulers.  Here is her May 2 CNN article:  “Trump at His Most Dangerous.”  Note:  she does not call T a “fascist” (her primary model is Mussolini), because he is not trying to establish a single party government. She explains however, that he does not need to do that, because he can rule by other, classic, strongman tactics. But I want to point out that he doesn’t need to waste time establishing single-party rule, because the Republican Party, before they nominated him, was well on the way to establishing a single-party democracy (i.e. people vote, without genuine choice). Today’s R Party is America’s fascist party, and its owners, managers, and operators are happy to have a strongman of their own in the presidency. Their only worry is whether they can manage him sufficiently to manage the American electorate. If they can’t, they will either try to dump him or try to further nullify election.  Meanwhile Sawant admonishes working people not to wait for impeachment, but to take action immediately to improve their lives (as she is doing in Seattle).

I do not believe that Fascism (AS) is compatible with democracy, any more than is oligarchic global corporatism (also The Muss’s word). Monopoly cannot tolerate competition.  Capitalists do not believe that there is enough for everybody to have enough.

We simply must face the fact that Trompf is moving steadily toward being a strongman dictator, consistent with his personality, business experience, and theory of government. He has strong Republican support. Stopping him will require massive, sustained, citizen action. The national Democratic Party is too weak to stop him by itself, but it can be re-visioned as an instrument of the people’s will.

And 5-12  The Muss lives! Here’s an excellent roundup of insightful analyses of what is happening and what must be done about it.

[Original post:]

Just watch The Trumps.  They’re showing us.  In their new reality TV show, “The Midas Touch,” a daily style show by which they glamorize the Trump brand and market Trump products (having mentioned them on .gov and advertised one via pres-elect interview), they exhibit the American style of “ownership of government by business in order to use government to generate corporate profit and private wealth” [author’s definition of fascism]. [Update:  another example.]

The star of the show is, of course, “The Man with the Midas Touch” (that’s its soon-to-be-hit theme song, with lyrics by Donald and Billy, “He’s got the Midas touch / He’s got the Midas touch / Oooo baby / How does that grab ya?” as performed by Donald and the Junkyard Dogs).

The show takes place in two locations, a gilded 58-story phallus on Fifth Avenue (in the middle of which, the star has boasted that he could shoot someone—probably a woman who has accused him of sexual assault, without losing a voter), and an ante-bellum plantation house in DC, built by slaves, soon to be known as Trump House (or not).

The show features two towering white women in signature white dresses who symbolize the ante-bellum purity of white womanhood, made great again, in stark contrast to the previous First Lady.

It is rumored that before the end of the first, projected four-year season, one of the show’s Leading Ladies will be turned into white gold, her face forever frozen in its model flat affect.

[8-29-17:  The Style Show (stilettos and seed caps), here and here.  9-2 And now here.  Can Veblenian consumption get much more conspicuous than that?  Oh, the ratings!  Some percentage of Americans are going to miss these clowns.]

Fascism is a genuine Big Business option; it’s not just some horrendous anomaly that emerged in Europe as a result of WW I. It’s a sickness, a psychopathology that readily gives expression to the confluence of psycho-pathologies of our own society. It’s an option for any monopoly capitalism. It’s a form that the aristocracy can take after monarchy.  The Muss and Hitler gave us images, and a pattern in our imaginations (certainly in Trump’s). In America we can give it our own style, varying somewhat, from fascist to fascist. It’s appearance is somewhat different, for instance, as styled by The Trump Family or by the Koch Bros (NLC) and their Ilk, les petites multibillionaires.

[For beauty, breath, and healthy blood pressure, Jillian sent this music.]

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  1. A Fascist America (3) | tomkoontz

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