Denouncing Socialism, Practicing Fascism

8 Feb

Denouncing Socialism, Practicing Fascism

 

With Trump the silences are usually as expressive of his intentions as the incoherent dogmas. Indeed, his Second State of the Union Address (delivered in Congress on February 5, 2019) gives a clear insight into the political mentality of tormentor in chief when it comes to the human condition. The speech contains many tensions, but none more illuminating than his denunciation of socialism and his silence about the resurgence of fascist tendencies throughout the world, and not least in his own country, which he several times anointed that night as the best the world has ever known. He not the first leader to make such a claim, of course, but he is undoubtedly the least qualified, and his own two years of faulty leadership has contributed to making America far less admired, and far more feared, than previously.

 

His diatribe against socialism had at least two targets: First, the Sanders wing of the Democratic Party now personified by the more radical recently elected women in the House of Representatives, especially Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, as well as the declared female presidential aspirants, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, and Tulsi Gabbard. And secondly, the Madura elected government in Venezuela, which he alleged failed because of its ‘socialist policies.’ Trump contends that these policies transformed Venezuela from being a wealthy example to the rest of Latin America into a society of ‘abject poverty and despair.’

 

 

When it comes to the United States, to contend that there is an incipient ideological war between the Democrats as the party of socialism and the Repuiblicans as the party of capitalism, Trump seems to be launching a more virulent version of the Cold War than what existed during the period of rivalry with the Soviet Union. It also overlooks the persistence of the toxic ‘bipartisan consensus,’ that owes its zombie-like persistence to the Faustian Bargains struck with both political parties that merge support for global militarism with that of capitalism as reinforced by the dysfunctional ‘special relationship’ to Israel. There is no current intimations that the Democratic Party will field a ticket for the 2020 elections that will challenge this consensus.

 

The media liberal mainstream, as might be expected, ignores the bipartisan consensus that has by now inscribed anti-socialism in its digital DNA. A typical reaction is that of Chris Cuomo, the unabashedly anti-Trump CNN news program host who warns the Democrats not to fall into the supposed trap set by Trump. Cuomo advises the Democrats that they would be making a potentially fatal mistake if they would be so foolish as to try to defend ‘socialism’ as a desirable option for American voters.

 

Of course, the more progressive views articulated by these Democratic presidential hopefuls, as well as by Stacey Adams who the DNC wisely chose for a formal response to Trump’s speech, is not socialism in any meaningful sense. It does not propose shrinking the private sector by shifting the ownership of the mainsprings of production and services to the public sector, that is, to government control. Trump, knowingly or more likely unknowingly, confused ‘socialism’ with a politics of empathy for the American people. Empathy under current conditions means such humane policies as affordable health care for all, highly subsidized higher education and student debt relief, equitable taxation, environmental and climate change sanity, drastically reduced military spending, and vastly increased infrastructure investment. I would add to this list an end to regime change geopolitics, a reduced global military profile, and an upgrading of respect for international law and international institutions, especially the United Nations.

 

 

To denounce socialism as unamerican is something never done even during the ideological hysteria of McCarthyism that disgraced the nation at the height of the Cold War. Trump’s language seems intended to brand those who espouse socialism by name or even by their platforms as subversive adherents of a faith alien to American values and traditions: “..we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. America was founded on liberty and independence — not government coercion, domination, and control. We are born free, and we will stay free.”

It may be helpful to recall that during the Great Depression the Socialist Party under the leadership of Norman Thomas was a respected and formidable presence on the American political landscape, widely praised by many non-socialist for pushing New Deal Democrats to adopt more compassionate policies toward the poor and unemployed precisely to weaken the appeal of socialist alternatives. For those of us old enough to remember, there are few active in American political life then or now more imbued with American values and our better angels than Normal Thomas. To assert, as Trump did, that socialism is unamerican is to insult the memory of this great American.

 

Perhaps, most serious of all, was the seemingly deliberate misidentification of the ideological threat actively undermining authentic American political, economic, social, and cultural traditions, institutions, reputation, and morale. It is the fascist threat that is real, and the socialist alternative that is contrived by Trump for inflammatory and insidious purposes. The celebration of militarism, bonding with autocratic oppressors around the world, the demonizing of immigrants and asylum seekers, war mongering toward Iran, challenging the rule of law, and ultra-nationalist versions of patriotism that are threatening the future of America, not fascism. The perversion of values and the neglect of the real interest of the American people was notably symbolized by several striking silences in Trump’s long speech: he found no time to include a sentence about climate change, gun violence, and predatory warfare in Yemen.

 

If we are to restore humane republicanism in America it will require not only a repudiation of Trump and Trumpism but also a rejection of the bipartisan consensus and deep state geopolitics. This means we must hope that the next American president will be a truly progressive female candidate who breaks free of the consensus and is not embarrassed by an ardent embrace of social and political justice for allAmericans and a global outlook that is responsive to urgent long-term challenges (climate change, nuclear disarmament topping the list) and to the immediate crises calling for international cooperation of an unprecedented scale, a move in the direction of moral globalization(migration, famine, crimes against humanity).

 

 

 

 

 

 

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7 Responses to “Denouncing Socialism, Practicing Fascism”

  1. Beau Oolayforos February 9, 2019 at 9:35 am #

    Dear Professor Falk,

    3/4 of the way in the 8th paragraph, I think you mean to say “not socialism” (?) The problem is that it has become a buzz-word, which can invoke regimes from Stalin’s USSR to modern Holland. Trump is channeling Barry Goldwater, with his “creeping socialism”…could this be the fascists’ Last Stand? Krugman’s latest piece (NYT) is a fine companion to your essay. Many thanks, as always.

  2. ray032 February 10, 2019 at 8:56 am #

    Thank you Richard for telling it like it is without exaggeration or embellishment

    This World may have arrived at the Jonah in the Whale moment, when there is no escape or way out, other than doing what has to be done and warn that “World City Nineveh” of impending destruction if they did nor change their ways.

    The World did not notice that Sign of OUR Times when in 2014, ISIS blew up the Islamic Mosque in Nineveh, Iraq containing the Tomb of Jonah in the Whale fame from the Jewish-Christian Bible.

    I re-posted and renamed Jonathan Cook’s recent article he titled, ‘A liberal elite still luring us towards the abyss’ changing the title to ‘ THE PATH TO MASADA-HOLOCAUST II’
    February 1, 2019 adding the images I think enhance the script.
    https://ray032.com/2019/02/01/on-the-path-to-masada-holocaust-ii/

    I often think the Christian TV personalities living the lifestyle of the rich and famous, have Americanized Jesus to the denial of The Universal Christ.

    They remain blind to this early Christian lifestyle of ‘extreme Socialism’ recorded in their Bibles. The rich Slave and Land owners would do everything in their Power, the elite in their Times, to silence those early Christians espousing the ideas the Bible records.

    And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
    And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
    And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
    Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
    Acts 2:44-47

    And like confirming a password, those ideas are confirmed again in Acts 4:32,
    And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.

    • Richard Falk February 10, 2019 at 11:45 am #

      Thanks, Ray, for this thoughtful and suggestive comment fit for the onset of a spiritual age that
      gives rise to the first eco-civilization.

  3. Kata Fisher February 11, 2019 at 12:55 am #

    Dear Professor Falk, Stalin was a brutal capitalist, and a fascist. At some point in time, course of the history change one way or other. It all depends which way a person turns. For every person is external impact, before they become whatever they suppose to become. Evil has most lasting impact, with great consequence for eternal justice.

  4. krustysurfer February 12, 2019 at 2:07 am #

    This country was founded in Rebellion, Greed, and General Lawlessness, funded by French Banking Houses, Seating Freemason George Washington into power as The Indigenous Here were exterminated for manifest Destiny and Progress into this Babylon Beast System, Where Profits were above the Prophets… Just as it always has been under Pharisaical Rule.
    Freemasonry and Secret Talmudic Rule by the Shekel or by the Sword, The Unseen Hand Bubbles to the surface of the swamp as it has with Shrek The Orange and no one cares, because, everyone is drunk on the riches of babylon, and no one dares turn off the spigot by biting the hand that feeds them………… God Help us because this is almost out of human hands to do anything rational about it. All bases covered as the 5G beast System of Control is about to be unleashed on a mostly unwitting general populace, turning paradise into a prison planet for all that dwell here. The end of mankind will be quick under their control.

    • ray032 February 12, 2019 at 6:29 am #

      I have been posting this recently in various sites. Some sites delete it.

      US Dollar=Image of the Beast

      Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?
      […] And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. (US Global dominance and Imperialism since WWII)
      […] And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. (the US always claims to be the good power, exceptional, innocent and unblemished like the lamb)
      […] And he does great wonders, so that he makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, (Nukes=destructive fire. The US is the only nation that used them in FIRE and FURY)
      […] And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed (money talks, and this world has seen many people killed in the Nations that have tried to get away from the US Dollar)
      […] And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. (money is the medium and the US puts more Economic Sanctions on other Nations as an Act of War than any other Nation)
      Revelation 13

  5. ray032 February 12, 2019 at 12:17 pm #

    Richard, this article was posted in Global Research. It’s doing better there than here, with 37 comments and 31 shares on their Face Book site.

    https://www.facebook.com/GlobalResearchCRG/

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