Sunday, February 17, 2008

Thomas Sowell on Left Wing Fascism-Is There Any Other Kind?

Other Loudon asserts himself to ask the hard question, is there any other kind of fascism? In his continued attempt to paint fascism and its many forms as the occupation of only left wing politics.

David G. Mills attempts to answer Loudons question in an article called:

It's the Corporate State, Stupid

From Information Clearings House

"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." - Benito Mussolini.

David G. Mills

11/10/04 "ICH" -- The early twentieth century Italians, who invented the word fascism, also had a more descriptive term for the concept -- estato corporativo: the corporatist state. Unfortunately for Americans, we have come to equate fascism with its symptoms, not with its structure. The structure of fascism is corporatism, or the corporate state. The structure of fascism is the union, marriage, merger or fusion of corporate economic power with governmental power. Failing to understand fascism, as the consolidation of corporate economic and governmental power in the hands of a few, is to completely misunderstand what fascism is. It is the consolidation of this power that produces the demagogues and regimes we understand as fascist ones.

While we Americans have been trained to keenly identify the opposite of fascism, i.e., government intrusion into and usurpation of private enterprise, we have not been trained to identify the usurpation of government by private enterprise. Our European cousins, on the other hand, having lived with Fascism in several European countries during the last century, know it when they see it, and looking over here, they are ringing the alarm bells. We need to learn how to recognize Fascism now.

Dr. Lawrence Britt has written an excellent article entitled “The 14 Defining Characteristics of Fascism.” An Internet search of the number 14 coupled with the word fascism will produce the original article as well as many annotations on each of the 14 characteristics of fascism that he describes. His article is a must read to help get a handle on the symptoms that corporatism produces.

But even Britt’s excellent article misses the importance of Mussolini’s point. The concept of corporatism is number nine on Britt’s list and unfortunately titled: “Corporate Power is Protected.” In the view of Mussolini, the concept of corporatism should have been number one on the list and should have been more aptly titled the “Merger of Corporate Power and State Power.” Even Britt failed to see the merger of corporate and state power as the primary cause of most of these other characteristics. It is only when one begins to view fascism as the merger of corporate power and state power that it is easy to see how most of the other thirteen characteristics Britt describes are produced. Seen this way, these other characteristics no longer become disjointed abstractions. Cause and effect is evident.

For example, number two on Britt’s list is titled: “Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights.” Individual rights and corporate rights, at the very least conflict, and often are in downright opposition to one another. In the court system, often individuals must sue corporations. In America, in order to protect corporations, we have seen a steady stream of rules, decisions and laws to protect corporations and to limit the rights of the individual by lawsuit and other redress. These rules, decisions, and laws have always been justified on the basis of the need for corporations to have profit in order to exist.

Number three on Britt’s list is the identification of scapegoats or enemies as a unifying cause. Often the government itself becomes the scapegoat when the government is the regulator of the corporations. Often it is lawyers or administrators who take on the corporations. Often it is liberals who champion the rights of individuals, or terrorists who might threaten state stability or corporate profit. Any or all may become scapegoats for the state’s problems because they pose problems for corporations.

Other notable characteristics of fascism described by Britt which are directly produced by corporatism are:

< The suppression of organized labor (organized labor is the bane of corporations and the only real check on corporate power other than government or the legal system);

< Supremacy of the military (it is necessary to produce and protect corporate profits abroad and threats from abroad);

< Cronyism and governmental corruption (it is very beneficial to have ex-corporate employees run the agencies or make the laws that are supposed to regulate or check corporations);

< Fraudulent elections (especially those where corporations run the machinery of elections and count the votes or where judges decide their outcomes);

< Nationalism (disdain for other countries that might promote individual rights);

< Obsession with national security (anti-corporatists are a security risk to the corporate status quo);

< Control of the media (propaganda works);

< Obsession with crime and punishment (anti-corporatists belong in jail); and

< Disdain for intellectuals and the arts (these people see corporatism for what it is and are highly individualistic).

All of these characteristics have a fairly obvious corporate component to them or produce a fairly obvious corporate benefit. Even Britt’s last two characteristics, the merger of state with the dominant religion and rampant suppression of divorce, abortion and homosexuality produce at least some indirect corporate benefit.

In sum, it’s the corporate state, stupid.

As I have pondered what could be done about America’s steady march toward the fascist state, I also have pondered what can be done internally to stop it. The Germans couldn’t seem to do it. The Italians couldn’t seem to do it. The only lesson from recent history where an indigenous people seemed to have uncoupled the merger of economic power with governmental power is the French Revolution. The soft underbelly of consolidated economic power is that the power resides in the hands of a few. Cut off the money supply of the few and the merger between economic power and government becomes unglued. The French systematically took out their aristocracy one by one. It was ugly; the French couldn’t seem to figure out when there had been enough bloodletting to solve the problem.

The thought of an American twenty-first century French Revolution is ugly. But the thought of an American twenty-first century fascist state is far uglier. It would be a supreme irony that the state most responsible for stopping worldwide fascism would become fascist 60 years later. But far worse than this irony is the reality that an American fascist state with America’s power could make Nazi Germany look like a tiny blip on the radar screen of history.

For some years now we have lived with the Faustian bargain of the corporation. Large corporations are necessary to achieve those governmental and social necessities that small enterprises are incapable of providing. The checks on corporate power have always been fragile. Left unchecked, the huge economic power of corporations corrupts absolutely. Most of the checks are badly eroded. Is there still time to get the checks back in balance? Or will we be left with two unthinkable options?

David G. Mills is an attorney who lives in Memphis, TN. Email - mmillsas@midsouth.rr.com

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

In other words Rogernomics. No wonder Loudon is trying to pass fascism off as left wing. His great mentor Roger Douglas and lacky Richard Prebble could be described as the classic definition of neoliberal fascists.

Anonymous said...

A lot of the fascism denials stem from Nazi Germany and the Holocaust taking prominence over similar or worse genocides committed by other countries such as Russia and China.

The reality is that any entity be it religious, or other ideologically driven reasons, that drives their ideologies via wielding state power is fascist.

That is something the Loudons of this world will try to avoid because we all know that small business becomes big business corporations which are behind todays fascism all around the world.

Anonymous said...

When are you communists gonna learn that Satan is the father of fascism, therefore since the ENTIRE FUCKING LEFT are nothing but devil spawn, that makes you all fascists by genealogy.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you pricks stop on picking on Loudon? Isn't this quite a Fascist tactic by people like you "Loudoon". Here's a tip, when you become more rational, please apologize to Loudon for what you did and then get a life.

Anonymous said...

"Here's a tip, when you become more rational, please say a big lipped sowwwwy mr loudon..."

If it helps loudy get back to the good old baseless mud slinging and rampant defamation weve all become accustomed to from him, then okidoke.

"Sowwwwy loudy poos"

Steve Nice guy Northland said...

Don't worry mate - the right-wing pigs are unwittingly confirming the definition of "right-wing pig":

One who feels "entitled" to abuse anyone/everyone - that Democracy Bitch for example when she doesn't deliver the result they like - anyone who doesn't swallow that The Chickenhawk is God's Lieutenant on Earth - anyone who goes "What???" when the facile Trevor Loudon of ACT allows some arsehole to tell me (as occurred on New Zeal): "I fucked your mother and she was a useless fuck!"

And one who having pedalled out all this shit to the rest of the world bursts into tears and whimpers on about being "bullied" when sane people respond. Like a five year old kid unconditionally "entitled" to get his own way.

It's a question of character I guess. And blind, self-centred arrogance. Piss off out of the kitchen you wimps !

Go and hide behind Mother Trevor's skirts. He'll wipe your tears and give you a big fat donut and you'll fel so much better.

Anonymous said...

For you dimwitted "anarchists" to not even know what Fascism really is, here's a list of what Mussolini implemented with his Fascist policies:

Politically, the Manifesto calls for:

Universal suffrage polled on a regional basis, with proportional representation and voting and electoral office eligibility for women;
Proportional representation on a regional basis;
Voting for women (which was opposed by most other European nations);
Representation at government level of newly created National Councils by economic sector;
The abolition of the Italian Senate (At the time, the Senate, as the upper house of parliament, was by process elected by the wealthier citizens, but were in reality direct appointments by the King. It has been described as a sort of extended council of the Crown);
The formation of a National Council of experts for labor, for industry, for transportation, for the public health, for communications, etc. Selections to be made of professionals or of tradesmen with legislative powers, and elected directly to a General Commission with ministerial powers. (this concept was rooted in corporatist ideology and derived in part from Catholic social doctrine)
In labour and social policy, the Manifesto calls for:

The quick enactment of a law of the State that sanctions an eight-hour workday for all workers;
A minimum wage [if you people think Loudon supports this, you're full of crap];
The participation of workers' representatives in the functions of industry commissions;
To show the same confidence in the labor unions (that prove to be technically and morally worthy) as is given to industry executives or public servants;
Reorganisation of the railways and the transport sector;
Revision of the draft law on invalidity insurance;
Reduction of the retirement age from 65 to 55.
In military affairs, the Manifesto advocates:

Creation of a short-service national militia with specifically defensive responsibilities;
Armaments factories are to be nationalised;
A peaceful but competitive foreign policy.
In finance, the Manifesto advocates:

A strong progressive tax on capital (envisaging a “partial expropriation” of concentrated wealth) [uh, I don't think someone like Loudon would support this either. Why are you "anarchists" so dumb to not even look at these policies in full context instead of using the term "Fascist" as a bumper sticker label?];
The seizure of all the possessions of the religious congregations and the abolition of all the bishoprics, which constitute an enormous liability on the Nation and on the privileges of the poor [that sounds like big government to me. Loudon's profile doesn't seem to match that. Sorry, you "anarchists" loose again];
Revision of all contracts for military provisions;
The revision of all military contracts and the seizure of 85 percent of the profits therein.

Anonymous said...

You people don't even really know what Fascism or Nazism really is. Are you people do is use it as a "bumper sticker label" against your opponents.

Anonymous said...

For you dimwitted "idiot" to not even know what anarchism really is...use googlem search for the term "anarchism", thats Ann Arrr Kizm

Anonymous said...

"For you dimwitted "idiot" to not even know what anarchism really is...use googlem search for the term "anarchism", thats Ann Arrr Kizm"

Says the morons who are closer to a Fascist/Nazi than they think they really are. But use those labels against their opponents.

Anonymous said...

You're a fascist mahmah, live with it!

Anonymous said...

"You're a fascist mahmah, live with it!"

Get a freakin life please. Everytime you use the term "Fascist", it looses meaning because it only is at someone you disagree with.

Anonymous said...

"The thought of an American twenty-first century French Revolution is ugly. But the thought of an American twenty-first century fascist state is far uglier. It would be a supreme irony that the state most responsible for stopping worldwide fascism would become fascist 60 years later. But far worse than this irony is the reality that an American fascist state with America’s power could make Nazi Germany look like a tiny blip on the radar screen of history."

This is perhaps one of the stupidest comments I have ever come across. You neo-Nazi turdlings sound like Noam Chomsky who btw is an apologist toward the totalitarian state of Communist Cuba and supports the genocidal Hamas which has stated that "Islam will obliterate Israel".

Anonymous said...

I support Cuban cigars, does that make me a "neo-Nazi turdlings"?

Trevour Loudoon said...

"I support Cuban cigars, does that make me a "neo-Nazi turdlings"?"

In every sense of the word it does, yes.

Steve Nice Guy Northland Only Reporting said...

This is TREVOR LOUDON of Oxford, Bun Maker, inventor of NEW ZEAL, the 13th most famous brand in Christendom, Squeaking:

ALERT ALERT ALERT - RED RED RED - FUCK THIS IS SERIOUS.....

Via a respected sauce it has come to this blog's attention that New Zilind's very financial infrastructure is under attack, nay, terrorist onslaught.....from a bunch of Muslims ensconced in deepest Mt Roskill - drawing the bennie.

It's like this. Yay years ago a bunch of commie bastards decided to create the institution of NZ BONUS BONDS, indeed I recall it was the National Party.

Idea was to solicit money, pay no interest, thus attracting all those Muslims, whom we knew would come flocking to our shores to match up with those bastard maoris, islanders and unionists.

Well anyway, those Muslims, Godamn their heathen souls, not believing in the concept of "interest on capital", well they invested heavily from their bennies and the menial pay they got, they "invested" in NZ BONUS BONDS

They invested in numbers greater than than Israeli cluster bombs in Lebanon, lying there unexploded, ready to blow kids' feet off.

There is accordingly a DISTINCT LIKELIHOOD OF A POSSIBILITY that these towelheads now control a fund equivalent to 3/5 of the GNP of Israel - if you take away the money the US under The Chickenhawk feeds them to murder Palestinian babies.

It does not help if you consider that the CEO of said NZ BONUS BONDS goes by the name of ALI VLADIMIR Chapman-Illingsworth. You see ? There's danger there. The worst of BOTH heathen worlds !

Yes my friends.....we are under attack from Islamo/Fascism/Commie-ism. And what good is that "Bitch" Helen Clark (as you know, I've called her that before), in this FISCAL, NAY, "FREEDOM" CRISIS ?

'Tis a fucked up world my ACTOID/FUCTOID brethren. Let us spin and spin and spin and lie and lie and lie and fart and fart and fart, then maybe all will be well.....

Yours, Trev.....of Oxford.....Bun Maker.

Anonymous said...

Even a mentally retarded person can have better arguments than people like you "Loudoon".

Trevour Loudoon said...

Whoa whoa whoa, I have a lot of respect for mentally retarded people. Its humourless fundamentalist retards like yourself I have little time for.