Twenty-Five Theses on Fascism

  • Posted on: 1 December 2017
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

From IAS - by Shane Burley

With the growth of the Alt-Right and the Trumpist movement in the US, the Left has grappled with how to understand and define fascism in the 21st century context. The conditions, players, and tactics are fundamentally different than its first manifestations, and so many antiquated studies have left inarticulate descriptions or inadequate culprits as roadmaps for understanding fascism today. Instead, these twenty-five statements are a proposal for how to understand the essential core of fascism–what binds it together as a modern impulse despite its different manifestations across cultures and time.

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Fascism in the 21st century has direct continuity to the insurgent movements that tore apart Europe, culminating in the Second World War. The methods, tactics, and strategies have changed, but the potential of the genocidal-racialist machine remains, and the ideologies are linked through history.

-2-

Fascism does not necessitate a specific type of statecraft (or a state at all), nor does it require a particular party apparatus, a fixed demographic of finance capital, or economic depression. What it does require is mass politics, popular support, and the ongoing destructive upheaval of class society.

-3-

When inequality is sanctified, identities made to be fixed and essential, and a mythic past is demanded in a distinctly post-industrial, modern world, fascism is the manifestation of the “True Right,” a distinct political identity revolting against democracy and equality. This real right wing exists throughout history, with fascism acting as the “reactionary modernist” version of the tendency towards violent inequality and essentialized identity. Fascism represents the iconic manifestation of the “True Right,” which then presents itself as a repudiation of the founding principles of liberal democracy.

-4-

Nihilism, as an apolitical destructive force, is a part of the fascist process, one that requires a destruction of the old infrastructure of morality so that a new mythic one can be built. Fascism often tries to colonize methods used on the Left/post-Left to achieve this creative destruction, disingenuously adopting revolutionary deconstruction.

-5-

The impulsive nature of reactionary violence is stoked by fascist ideology and ideologues in an effort to center an irrationalist response to the unbinding rage of modernity. In a culture that trains the working class in systems of bigotry, energy is forced toward scapegoating rather than directing that alienation at the oppressive institutions that birth it.

-6-

Today, fascism is largely built on metapolitics rather than explicit politics. Fascist projects attempt to influence culture, perspectives, and morality as precursors to politics. This puts much of their work into the realm of art and music, philosophy and lectures, counter-institutions and counterpower. This is the development of a fascist value and aesthetic set, not simply a fascist political program.

-7-

The values set by fascists enable them to use methodologies traditionally associated with the Left, including mass politics, postcolonialism, anti-imperialism, and anti-capitalism. Fascists employ the power of the marginalized classes and redirect their anger against systemic inequality and alienation against other marginalized people, thus reframing the source of the crisis.

-8-

Because of their strategic and revolutionary orientation, fascists have historically been able to draw on disaffected areas of the Left. There is no revolutionary tradition that is free from far-right entry, wherein the flaws in radical Left analysis and practice allow for fascists to present an alternative and recruit.

-9-

Nationalism is itself considered the core motivating vision in fascism, yet it is actually only a subset of the larger identitarian trend. Tribalism, of which nationalism is only one type, is the key component of this assertion of essential identity. Nationalism is a version of this that will always be tied to the nation state, and therefore tribalism placed in a modern context necessitates itself through nationalism, but this is not universal. The modern fascist movement redefines itself consistently in praxis, and reimagining that tribalism means that how they divide up tribe, and the social authorities that reinforce the boundaries of that tribe, can change.

-10-

Ethnic nationalism is a foundational principle of fascism today, a type of racial tribalism, which is not relegated only to white nationalism or the civic nationalism of Western nations. This draws on an ethnopluralist ethic of “nationalism for all peoples,” which attempts to ally with nationalist components of Third World national liberation movements, minority nationalist movements, and those resisting Western imperialist powers. When racial nationalism is used as a component solution to confronting oppressive powers, it makes itself the potential ally of a fascist logic that sees the answer to capitalism and imperialism in authoritarian forms of identitarianism.

-11-

Fascism’s focus on immigration, founded on the desire for monoracial countries, draws on the anxieties that are often tied to Left organizing. The “offshoring” of jobs due to neoliberal globalization, isolationist rhetoric in the anti-war movement, labor institutions’ fears of immigrant workers driving down wages, environmental fears associated with population growth, the scapegoating of Islamic immigrants for supposedly repudiating liberal norms, and the smug liberal secularism of the US coasts, are all well mobilized by fascist movements attempting to use liberal modes of thought for their own anti-immigrant populism.

-12-

The Alt-Right is the most coherent and fully formed fascist movement in several decades. The mislabeling of all Trump supporters as true Alt-Right adherents, whether those in Patriot or militia organizations, or those in New Right or Alt-Lite projects of right populism, has created a fuzzy media spectacle that misses the Alt-Right’s true motivations. The belief in human inequality, social traditionalism, racial nationalism, and an authoritarian vision founded in the resurrection of heroic mythologies are what distinguish the Alt-Right as a self-conscious fascist movement.

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Third Positionism, which draws Left ideas into fascist politics, is the dominant form of open fascism today. True fascist ideologues, the “idea makers” in these movements who currently make up the most radical element, necessarily consider themselves anti-imperialist, anti-capitalist, and opposed to current Western governments.

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Fascism has often been described as a process of multiple stages, in the way that it starts from a radical cadre and develops to the point of acquiring political power. But this is a description of a particular historical moment of fascism, rather than a universal description of its operational trajectory. This understanding should be revised for different periods and countries where power, influence, and social cohesion appear differently. For instance, in interwar Europe, party politics developed coalitions for state power, but in other times and places power could also involve the church, the media, or cultural centers. In modern America, fascists are allying with an online culture that helped the Alt-Right grow and take over influential cultural spaces with the ability to influence essential parts of the larger society. In the 21st century US, party politicians have waning influence while internet celebrities are more influential than anyone could have ever dreamed.

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While “The Five Stages of Fascism” described by scholar Robert O. Paxton outline the process by which fascism took power, and then went into decline in Europe before and during the Second World War, both the conditions and movements are fundamentally different now.[1] Predicting the process for power acquisition and possible failure in a period when fascism remains primarily influential in culture and insurgent movements is impossible to predict fully in advance.

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The crisis for fascists today comes from the contradictions in their approach to their own growth. Fascism of the interwar period relied first on political organizing, which then had to consider media representation. The Alt-Right of the 21st century developed almost entirely online through a culture of memes and hashtags. While this has given them a huge jump in the expanse of their messaging, they have since had trouble translating this into real-world engagement and subsequent organizing. The vulgarity of their language, the style of their approach, and the demographics of their retweeters does not necessarily extend to radical organization and organizing.

-17-

If fascists see cultural spaces as premeditating political ones, then the movement of fascists into cultural spaces is effectively political. If fascist public speech is intended to recruit and organize, then fascist public expression is indistinguishable from fascist organizing. If fascist organizing results in violence, whether explosions of “seemingly random” street violence, or genocide if they were to take power, then fascist organizing is fascist violence. Unlike other forms of revolutionary politics, fascism seeks to sanctify violence, built directly into their conception of identity and a correctly hierarchical society. Therefore, even the most muted fascist ideologue holds the kernels of brutality.

-18-

Fascism can only hide its violence for so long. The history of white nationalism has been the history of bloodthirsty terrorism, a point which marks all fascist parties and organizations in all countries in all times. While fascist intellectuals and movement leaders desperately want to decouple the image of identitarian nationalist ideas from street and state violence, this is impossible in the real world. Within a long enough time frame there will always be killing.

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Fascism could not exist in a period before mass politics. While it is decidedly elitist–it believes that society should be run, in part, by an elite caste–it also requires the mass participation of the public. This means recruiting from large segments of the working class, requiring their complicity in increased oppression. Hannah Arendt described the way this works as the “banality of evil,” to characterize the casual complicity and bureaucratic malaise of the German people in the events of World War II and the Holocaust. This banality is a requirement for fascism to take power, for a mass to believe its benefits worth its cost. This is the unity of populism with elitism, resetting the mentality of the masses so that they can walk themselves to destruction.

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The conditions that breed fascism, the unfinished equation of late capitalism, are only likely to become more ingrained and dramatic. Crisis is essential to capitalism and will increase as global economic markets continue to shake with instability. That penchant for crisis, mixed with the stratification built into capitalism and the state’s reliance on bigotry, makes fascist explosions inevitable.

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The Left’s inability to provide a real and viable alternative to the current system, and its capitulation to institutions of power, are what give fascism its strongest rhetorical appeal. An effective anti-fascist movement would do more than simply oppose the fascists in order to then return society to its previous order. Instead, the Left should present a radically different vision that answers the same feelings of alienation and misery to which fascism presents itself as a solution.

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Fascism’s ability to adapt to changes in technology, social systems, values, ethics, and the politics and practices of the Left is profound. As progress is made in Left circles toward confronting legacies of colonialism, white supremacy, patriarchy, heteronormativity, and other systems of oppression, fascist ideologues will find ways of manipulating those projects for their own advancement. Preventing this cooptation requires understanding the core ideology and methodologies of fascism while being consistent about the motivating ideas of Left organizing, always striving towards greater freedom and equality.

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Donald Trump rode into the White House on the same kind of right populism that led to Brexit, the UK’s exit from the European Union, emboldened Marine Le Pen and the National Front in France, and allowed the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany party to enter the state. This creates the possible bridge between the mass populace and fascist or proto-fascist ideologues, who want to see a society of enforced inequality and essentialized identity. This bridging is a necessary precondition for a mass fascist societal shift, and should be seen as a part of the concentric circles that give fascism its ability to enact mass violence.

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Resistance to fascism must then take on the form of mass politics as well, going after the macropolitics of right populism that bridge mainstream conservatism to the fascist cadre. This cannot be done only by a radical fringe, but should be done by mobilizing both the base that fascism recruits from and the mass marginalized communities that it targets (which make up the vast majority of the working class). The most effective counter to fascist recruitment is Left mobilization, and the only thing that stops mass violence is mass refusal.

-25-

White supremacy and social hierarchy are implicit in class society, but fascism seeks to make it explicit. The Left’s counter to this can also be to make that oppression explicit, to spell out the underlying hierarchies of civilization so as to undermine the fascist progression. The only thing that will end fascism in perpetuity is to destroy the mechanisms that allow it to arise in the first place. Destroying the impulses of authoritarianism and intrinsic inequality is a requirement for eradicating fascism from collective consciousness. The only thing that can do this is a revolutionary movement that goes far beyond simple reactions to the brutal movements of fascists.

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[1] Robert O. Paxton, “The Five Stages of Fascism,” The Journal of Modern History, Vol. 70, No. 1. (Mar., 1998), pp. 1-23.

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Shane Burley is the author of Fascism Today: What It Is and How to End It (AK Press, 2017). His work has appeared in places like Jacobin, In These Times, Waging Nonviolence, Roar Magazine, and Upping the Anti. You can find him at ShaneBurley.net and on Twitter @Shane_Burley1

 

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Comments

"Nihilism, as an apolitical destructive force, is a part of the fascist process"

Fascism is a population unifying political methodology which gains democratically the State control of the totality of the peoples' minds. This totalitarian culture demands uniformity of belief, thus any X-tian, Buddhist or other majority religiously governed nations could be regarded as fascist. X-tian Idpol Antifa is the most recent and largest fascist organization, because Antifa partly out of ignorance, have no idea what individual consciousness is and Idpol likewise assume that morality is the same as ethics and thus deny the sovereignty of individual lifestyle and place it within a State sanctioned jurisdiction.

The only way to defeat fascism is for people not to be swallowed up by a collective consciousness.

The only best way for anarchists to accomplish anything, is to practice collective action and not confuse it for "collective consciousness".

Only would like to say that fascism is the only ideology that accepts "love" in politics, no matter how delusional it is, whereas all the other tendencies reject it, and make hate an efficient political tool.

Not even stalinists, afaik, went as far as asserting the love for Mother Russia and/or its mustachoed leader.

So when you got hordes of discarded dorks attempting an entry into mainstream or institutional politics, you gotta understand how their exclusion from love affairs in daily life can be a powerful grievance for giving them a strong emotional cause to support "the nation" and the Leader to death.

I think Reich's theory on fascism still applies today and wasn't looked enough into. For instance... this may sound like a gross generalization, but many boneheads are discretely gay, and often their repressive extremism has to with their lack of acceptance of their homosexuality. I can also recount the story of the founder of a well-known Quebec WS group, who now turned his back on it and is denouncing xenophobia. The guy originakly started this shit out of his social isolation and misery... He was living secluded in a shitty apartment in Quebec City, and probablty seeing all those "non-Whites" having a plentiful, sane ordinary life made him butthurt.

It's been looked in to, there's definitely a correlation between extreme forms of authoritarianism and repressed sexuality but not always and it seems besides the point. You can psycho-analyze individual extremists but pathologizing them doesn't really change the terrain in any meaningful way. It's more about when they all start getting together.

But why do they get together was the object of my comment.... They didn't have the love that sane, socially-skilled people have in their daily lives, therefore they are agglomerating around vile, retrograde, brutish forms of herd behavior, belonging and community which gives them the impression of authenticity and belonging. It tells them what's their rightful place. Just look at those who've been joining the jihadists. Exact same pattern. Broke, destitute men going all the way to Afghanistan to fight for trhe Jihad... The Malheur resistance camp... The Ukrainian "cyborgs"... The French identitaires... All very much the same derelicts.

How can you address fascism without seeking to understand what attracts these people to it?

You forgot groups of effeminate artists who live in communes feel alienated and deprived and vent on minority indigenous ethnic groups .

Why do they men getting together? I'm working with you; I don't have answers. My first question is to ask what is going on with the women. For instance, are families of region-origin organized... what is that called? One man, many wives? I've heard that when men can't find companionship, they lose meaning IF they've grown up trained to become patriarchs. Many women are migrating away from region-origin to work as domestics for wealthier families. Here, I'm thinking of stories such as this one: "The vanished: the Filipino domestic workers who disappear behind closed doors."

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2015/oct/24/the-vanished-...

Those are both cases in which the patriarchs-in-training lose meaning when companionship / wives are not around anymore.

Patriarchy is also very homophobic. This compounds the issue because companionship with other men and the formation of alternate family styles do not feel like viable options, so to speak.

That's my analysis. Because women are absent, it's almost a scarcity-fear that gets exploited. The patriarchs / patriarchs-in-training are taught to respond to fear with aggression; it's how they survive the violence of patriarchal competition within the man-groups. Aggression-response is also how patriarchy is maintained. Women aren't necessarily less physically equipped to dominate the patriarchs. It's constant psy-ops and violence against women. Commonly, the safety OF children as well as the love FROM children will be weaponized for oppression. It is not difficult for patriarchs to get children to turn against their mother. I'm thinking of a specific movie to recommend that demonstrates the use of children for oppression, BUT, again, BUT I do not recommend it for viewers all-too familiar with the violence of patriarchy. (This is technically a "trigger-warning" but the term has become washed of all meaning by performative-politics).

"The Stoning of Soraya M. Trailer" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWQ9phw1C9w

Yes - Reich, Theweleit, Brinton, Marcuse, Fromm are underused today. I would say, however, that the sexual climate is very different today from the 1930s. "Sexual repression" as the cause of fascism is not really viable in an era of gay marriage and Internet porn (though sexual frustration of "incels" or "wizards" seems to be part of it). In Theweleit the "gay" thing is spun as not so much sexual, as a displacement of libidinal energy from sexuality to the violence-in-common of the male-bonding group (the military squad, gang, or equivalent). None of his fascists have close connections to women, mainly because they're excluded (for economic reasons) from the work-family structure (though many of them are married or frequent sex workers).

If we assume that the alt-right are continuous with Channers, then their sexuality is certainly revealing, if also diverse. Frustrated "incels" and "MGTOW", misogynistic sadists, people who prefer cartoon women to "3DPD" and call their favourite anime character their "waifu", incest fantasists, pedophiles, racists with interracial fantasies (there's a board specially for Nazis attracted to Jewish women, a lot of fetishising East Asian women as well), heavy use of porn including a propensity for abusive/rape porn and shock videos more broadly, people attracted to anthropomorphised animals or futanari... it's very broad, but what's really *not* there is any kind of romantic or empathetic connection to another person through sexuality. It's either outright domination (rape, enslavement, cannibalism...) or a kind of adoration of the unattainable other on a pedestal (sometimes extending to similar fantasies about an actual person who is actually controlled and manipulated - with PUAs and contact pedos for example). I think sexuality is overridden by, and tied-up with, aggressive drives for most of these people (including fear of women and frustration with exclusion from the work-family system), and this is where it's similar to Theweleit and Reich.

"what's really *not* there is any kind of romantic or empathetic connection to another person through sexuality... .....I think sexuality is overridden by, and tied-up with, aggressive drives for most of these people (including fear of women and frustration with exclusion from the work-family system)"

Why are they afraid of women? Is it a fear of revenge?

the alt-right is pervasive pretty much everyone is raised in the patriarchy right? most people are conditioned by the state through its dominance, to fear of others-unlike-themselves and yet so instinctually make for the humane companionship and a means of living. the state demands marriage and work and so blackmails people into relationships of detached codependency. marriage and work are a scary paradigm and mostly people claim they are just the way of the world, insisting that others abide or be damned.

marriage and work. "WHY? PULL APART!!"
"humane companionship and means of living"
got it.

they grab us by the genitals and coerce us into to their fucking game
alot of people also prefer video games and professional sports over saving the actual world and playing our own games

video games and professional sports: kill them?

wait. "coersion" yep.

you want to kill something, then?

It's with these kind of questions that my "wtf is desire?" trips me up. No, not really. Sometimes. Mosh pit.

humane like specific accordance in the proceeding sense of will-to-power or to reciprocating evolutionary companionship like fluid dynamic personal relationships and meaning as vision-questing or compassionate creative imagination for a living symbiotic balance.

I'm not sure they're all afraid, some are more contemptuous, or just apathetic. A few are sentimental, provided the woman in question is idealised. Some have a madonna/whore complex.

In Theweleit's work, the complex is something like: I face a threat of imminent decomposition; I must protect myself from this threat by remaining absolutely rigid and absolutely self-controlled, in particular, refusing vulnerable emotions; women are a threat because they make me feel dangerous emotions (e.g. sexual arousal, protectiveness, love). Hence women become the "site" for men's projected fears of their own repressed desires. There's also a recurring fear of being usurped by women and of "masculine" women taking over men's roles (the communist "rifle-women", basically phallus-women, in this account). The other aspect here is that, for 20s middle-class Germans, sex/romance are tied-up with marriage, which is tied-up with career, house, financial stability, which are denied to the kind of men drawn to this kind of discourse.

There's feminist accounts of crisis-of-masculinity and backlash, all the way from the 80s to now, dealing with sexism in the current context. There's a lot more of it than I've read, but the stuff I've read suggests that men haven't come to terms with women's liberation in the 70s, and its knock-on effects on men's gender roles, i.e. losing roles such as male breadwinner. Empowered women tend to be seen as castrating, "mother-devourers" or mutant semi-men. There's a whole series of fictional images channelling these fears - the Glenn Close, Sharon Stone kind of murderess for example. The more Marxist-inclined works also talk about the loss of bases for male identity such as industrial jobs. I've also seen pedophilia linked to this flight from women, which also seems to involve a thinner and thinner ideal over time (theorised to involve the removal of women's sexual threat).

There's a lot of misogyny (actual misogyny, not Tumblr-idpol misogyny) flying round on the chans, and in this case, it often just looks like upside-down Tumblr-feminism. The fear of women stems from blaming women for felt inadequacies and stigmas arising from neoliberalism, which are strangely similar to those similarly articulated by Tumblr-feminists. Women are seen as benefitting from neoliberalism, usually through unfair advantages, and trying to make men irrelevant in the process. These are generally precarian men, stereotypically "basement-dwelling NEET neckbeards" in their self-portrayal, who don't know the rules of the dating game or don't have the social capital to play it, who experience serial rejection or simply don't try any more, and who resent women and "chads" (sexually successful men) for their sexual and (by extension) social and economic exclusion. They seem to live most of their life on the Internet, and to have very little idea of real-world gender dynamics, but they've accumulated endless lists of grievances about how men as a group are treated by women or by society. Some of them are convinced that women have it much better than men, because (for instance) they don't have to seek a partner, just sit around and choose/reject men; or because men are supposedly considered more "disposable" than women. There's paranoia that women use false rape or abuse accusations to ruin men's lives, which makes the dating game even more rigged against men (e.g. the duty is on men to initiate contact, but unwanted contact is considered harassment; men who upset their partners can be ruined by false rape accusations). They don't think equal relations between men and women are possible because women are irrational and don't play fair. They seek respite in Internet porn and domination fantasies - keeping women as slaves, farming them for meat, copying some stereotyped version of how Saudi households work, or marrying a virgin, to take a few examples I've seen. And as I say - quite a lot of them forsake women entirely, for anime characters, children, furries, sexbots, whatever. The continuities here are 1) the element of exclusion from the sex/romance game, 2) the fear of de-feminised women (today this would be the aggressive masculine feminist or stereotypical trans "SJW") and of sexually manipulative and dominating women. The fear of repressed desire doesn't seem to be there in the same way, but there's an equivalent libidinal structure based on a knot around the question of abuse (roughly, "I want to have sex with you but this leads you to see me as an abuser, and therefore, since we can't have consensual sex then I'll fantasise about actually abusing you") which suggests a similar ambivalence in the desire to have sex with women but also the desire to reject women.

There's been academic studies of PUA's and basically they're quite rigid, character-armoured people who pursue apparently hedonistic goals by controlled, almost austere means. Operational management theory, applied to dating. It's also very tied-up with behaviourism, evo psych and NLP. I've also read academic material on gender in Africa. Women often get the stick for effects of neoliberalism. "Traditional" African women are meant to be married for life, family-oriented, self-sacrificing for their children (actually an imported colonial ideal), and modern women's supposed failure to live by this ideal is blamed for most of society's problems. The real picture is more complicated, and disturbingly familiar: neoliberalism has undermined male incomes, meaning men can no longer financially support a family, meaning women are forced to work or seek multiple partners to support them. Most women adhere to the traditional idea as much as men do, but women often end up abandoned, widowed or leaving abusive men, so end up confirming the stereotype in spite of themselves. It's a standard pattern of treating effects of neoliberalism as causes - America does the same thing with poverty and immigration for example.

By the way, they're also afraid of Jews, Muslims and black people, and in this case, there's a knot around "who wants to exterminate whom" (hence "you will not replace us", "stop white genocide", in the Turner Diaries the blacks start the killings) - Nazis imagine the blacks or Jews or Muslims are about to exterminate *them*, so their acting to exterminate first is really self-defence. For example, they tell themselves stories where thousands of ISIS loyalists are overrunning Europe in the refugee wave and imposing Islamic law, burning down churches and beheading people. This same structure can be observed in real historical genocides. The Rwandan government convinced the Hutus that the advancing Tutsi-led opposition army was about to rouse Tutsis to massacre all the Hutus, meaning the Hutus had to strike first. The Bosnian Serb leaders fed their followers a line that the Bosnian Muslims were about to attack them. The Buddhist ultranationalists (no friends of Emile I hope) who are most trenchantly hostile to the Rohingya use a discourse where the Rohingya pose an imminent threat, they're Muslims who hate infidels and are about to kill everyone. In Theweleit's work, the main perceived threat is from communists, who are perceived to want to wipe out the middle-class and "German culture".

Yep. I feel entirely defeated. What is the fucking point?
Ideal / Madonna / Whore - been that girl.
Should I even work social-reproduction against Fascism?
But If I don't engage, will they take over?
Shit's hard enough. Economically, it's already Fascist, but I don't want my social-life...

by the way, their against jews....

I'm from the fucking south. I know.

Isn't this analysis just to help you orient yourself so you can decide the if/when/what?

14.52 I really don't know. I think social reproduction through subsistence networks weakens fascism. In terms of relationships and gender, it seems really mixed. I think it's significant that not much sex is being had nowadays (compared to the recent past), and that women and men are so afraid of one another. What if a bunch of poly girls or sex workers got together and offered MGTOW types free fucks in return for renouncing fascism? It'd be interesting to see, though I wouldn't like to try it, the levels of sadism I'm seeing these days. On another level, fascists sometimes soften when their needs are met and they're listened to (and there's all these stories about how one hug from a black man got someone out of fascism), but it's impossible to get to that point when they're trying to kill you. Or maybe the Freire model would work with some of those post-industrial areas which are going fascist. Get them to the point of a "click" - that their problems are a structural problem due to neoliberalism, not just feckless poor and criminals. To be honest I think the despair is partly a media effect, there's still not many hardcore fascists. But, I feel it too.

Nice expose for the most part, @critic, tho don't you see that the crux of the problem here is how some of these generalizations towards women are at least partly grounded in reality?

"Some of them are convinced that women have it much better than men, because (for instance) they don't have to seek a partner, just sit around and choose/reject men; or because men are supposedly considered more "disposable" than women."

I can see several looked-after women being in this kind of position where men, and people in general, are just a box of cookies to them. The general cold and distant temper (not meaning "frigid") of the sophisticated women in urban centers only helps furthering this depressing worldview where "men are no longer needed" especially not socially-unfit males like themselves, and myself as well.

I noticed that there used to be a time, probably two decades, where there used to be astronomical suicide rates among males in the 18-40 age range. Interesting that now what we know as the "alt-right" men end up being about the same derelict types who used to be making suicide rates soar. And isn't that a well-demonstrated even if controversial method in psychology to be treating suicidal people by making them redirect their anger at external objects?

Anyways, perhaps polysexual women could cure the disease of neofascism by offering their free love and sex to the destitute males, but I don't know whether that's something to demand to women, or that it wouldn't end up empowering these males in their careers as racists and nationalists.

Obviously the best answer to hate, as ever, is love (that is not limited to those damn couple relationships but can also include friendship, buddying, mutual respect, free sharing, fishing parties together, whatever love means to you). But love is also something complex that's full of pitfalls if not carried properly. Comparatively, hate is simple and cheap, and that's why people cling to it so much, especially in such dark times of social insecurity...

So giving time and attention, if not comprehension or fun freely to someone is something that is quite universal and also a good trade-off with the more intense and tricky relations that involve sex. I tend to believe the little things at relational level are creating a lot more good than "big relationships" that take more efforts and (uuugh!) social skills to deal with, while just playing or being silly with others builds up has the potential of building better contacts on the long run.

>how some of these generalizations towards women are at least partly grounded in reality

The thing is, if we're playing the generalisations game (women this, men that), we have to accept averages, and the averages are still "men are better off than women". But there will always be individual cases where the MRA case is true, and certainly there's an unfuckable sexual proletariat of men (probably of women too), there's also something called the "restive youth problem" all over the world which is nearly all young men (it doesn't affect women in quite the same way... the more patriarchal the society, the less it affects women this specific way). Less sex is being had, it seems more voluntary on women's part than men's, although I don't understand the causality very well. The women I know who've stopped dating, it's either an aversion reaction after severe abuse or rape, a reflection of very fragile mental health, an effect of extremely long working hours, or several of these. But I know a few who seem to think there's a rapist hiding in every shadow, and get creeped out so easily by anything vaguely sexual that it'd almost be easier if they made men wear burqas. The "kept" housewife is pretty much a dead social role except among the super-rich, and it was never exactly a free ride for women anyway (endless boring unpaid labour in a subordinate role); the male breadwinner is also a threatened species, more because of downward pressure on wages than women's empowerment. My suspicion is we aren't dealing with "men are no longer needed" or "women are no longer needed", we're dealing with "humans are no longer needed" (numisphere, declining labour market, robotisation...) and "there might not be a planet left fit for human inhabitants in 50 years", not to mention "the western industrial proletariat are no longer needed", and we're dealing with the emotional consequences of precarity and attentive stress, but there's a very clever structural discourse going on (I doubt it's intentional) that lets each *group* think it's the only group unfairly under attack and the other groups are fine, or are the oppressors. But, you may well be right, it might not be sexual repression so much as loss of connection on a smaller scale, we seem to be short of fun and small gestures of kindness these days.

I would say that on average men are better off at the level of agency and expression, however if you look more into safety and security the picture changes(the homeless makeup for instance). There is something to the disposable male concept that should be fleshed out by the less resentful and reactionary. Overall I think men and women both face their own specific challenges and one cannot be said to be qua better and worse than the other.

Posted a response in the forum (not sure why it isn't showing yet).

Is the answer to the edgelord.

One of the first things for critics of fascism to acknowledge is that fascism is predominantly a masculine tendency. From there they can wax intellectually as much as they like, but THIS male patriarchal mindset is its foundation,,,,,,

More specifically, toxic masculinity. I thought you didn't buy in to identity essentialism?

Good specific Wheels, yeah, the toxic. I wouldn't call my gender analysis as essentialist, but rather physiological. It would be essentialist if I said ALL males had fascist tendencies. Thanks for the advice. How have things been going for you at home, everything hunky-dory buddy,,,,,?

Not seeking your approval Le Fool, I'm pointing out how lazy your thinking is ;)

"The patriarchy" isn't necessarily fascist either, better to say that some culturally reified tendencies (described as toxic masculinity by smarter folks than you or I) seem to have a correlation with fascism or perhaps provide fertile ground in which to plant its seeds.

My advice is to stop pretending that ellipsis-with-commas are a thing. Stop trying to make fetch happen Gretchen! Home life is fine sweetheart, thank you for asking,,,,,

Nobody else going to ask? Fine …what's with the pic?

How to survive an encounter with an angry ostrich. Wikihow. 1 kick from a 300kg ostrich will kill a person.

Most of the ideology of fascism is already present in the (neo)conservatism, recuperated social-democracy (e.g. Third Way), and iron-fist liberalism of the political class of the societies in which it arises. Fascism only arises on a mass scale when many of its beliefs are already “common sense”.

Fascism does not appear and seize power suddenly, in leaps and bounds. Fascist discourse creeps into society – often through non-fascist agents – over a long time. The danger of fascist politicians is never simply that they take power. It is also that they shift the discourse of conservatism, liberalism and social-democracy towards itself. This shift – repeated over time – creates a situation where the fascists themselves come closer and closer to power.

In many ways, fascism is the ideology of the police in power, or the ideology of the army in power. Most fascist regimes have come from military coups or civil wars. Police and army ideology is (nearly?) always latently fascist. Fascism arises when the balance of social discourse tilts towards the police-army-security element to an exceptional degree.

Bodily rigidity, hatred (or sadistic displacement) of desire, and misanthropy are always present in fascism to some degree. They are generally displaced onto hated/feared groups (women, gay men, communists, black people, Jews...) At the same time, they are secretly entertained and acted-on in private (many alt-righters are pedophiles, rape fantasists, fetishists for Jews or Asians, fans of hentai, wannabe slave-owners or cannibals...) – and this is 'perversely' justified by the greater good of the movement.

Fascists normally have a Hobbesian view of human nature (people are basically evil), a 'grimdark' view of nature and history (life is a grim struggle to survive), and a consequent valorisation of toughness, strength, ruthlessness, manipulativeness/shrewdness, and outright cruelty. The world is “abuse or be abused”. This might or might not be combined with sentimentalism about people or ideas to be protected. The valuing of 'dark' traits provides a paradoxical justification for the fascist's own personality – the fascist NEEDS the world to be evil, to justify her/his own evil (which in fascist ideology, is virtuous mainly for its necessity, not in itself).

There is no fascist utopia. There is fascist nostalgia for a past golden age, and there are fascist fantasies of apotheosis (e.g. the Turner Diaries), but the context of scarcity and struggle cannot and should not be transcended.

Fascism is an ideology of spooks (this is not unique to fascism). In fascism, real people – as individuals, flows, processes – are subordinated to big abstract categories. Fascism involves an absolute identification of individuals with an abstract category which they belong to (nation, race...) and preparedness (in principle) to sacrifice everything (self, others) to this category.

Fascism is to collective identities what clinical narcissism is to individual identities. The favored collective can do no wrong. All must adore it. Any refusal to adore it is a threat to be eliminated. Any fault must be denied or rationalised.

As libidinal politics, fascism is about getting enjoyment from the obliteration of others (real or imaginary, direct or vicarious). Violence receives an almost mystical power, and captures the force of desire, often to the exclusion of sexuality and other sources of enjoyment. This is necessary for fascism, but not sufficient.

One of the key rules of fascism is: “you must be put in your place so I can feel secure in my place”. The other's suffering is enjoyable because it affirms the superiority and integrity of the self.

Fascism is a downwards displacement of suffering arising from insecurity and precarity. It therefore spikes in economic downturns, prolonged organic crises (the low-point of a Kondratiev wave), and periods of social instability.

This downward displacement is normally based on the misrecognition of socio-economic and social-structural problems as problems of morality, culture, or interpersonal respect.

One common class constituency of fascism is a downwardly-mobile middle-class or labour aristocracy. This group is squeezed between the (real or imagined) proletarian threat from below, and the (real or imagined) elite threat from above. Fascists pose as revolutionary but their core values are conservative.

Fascism is thus pessimistic conservatism.

Fascism retains most of the neoconservative/communitarian ideology of downturn capitalism, but displaces agency in fighting for this vision from the state and the elite, to the fascist movement itself and its charismatic leader.

The other common class constituency of fascism is a disorganised “lumpenproletariat” or “surplus population” which for whatever reason, buys into moralised accounts of social problems (the misrecognition of socioeconomic and structural issues as moral, cultural, and respect issues).

Fascism rejects rights, autonomy, diversity, equality, individual freedom – anything which attaches value to human (or nonhuman) beings as such. All rights are reduced to privileges. All privileges are accessible only to members of the club. The club must be constantly on its guard against criminals, scroungers and foreigners who will steal its privileges.

The 'club' mentality appears when a 'big tent' mentality doesn't seem to work for the squeezed middle or the 'surplus population'. It generally arises among groups not reached by the left in its context, whose interests or desires are not recognised, either because they are “too privileged” or because they are unorganised and invisible.

There are social conditions for fascism, and these provide weaknesses which its adversaries can exploit. Fascism becomes unsustainable when abundance becomes prevalent, or even simply within the realm of reasonable hope. Fascism becomes unsustainable when lived utopias are experientially present. Fascism becomes unsustainable when oppressed people identify primarily as individuals. Fascism becomes unsustainable when oppressed people identify primarily as part of a big oppressed class which includes the squeezed middle and the 'surplus population'.

orange/blue should replace red/green

these theses are a total misreading. fascism fascism fascism fascism fascism fascism fascism fascism

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