Hawking Up Hairballs

Saturday, August 08, 2009

U.S. Fascism?

I'm linking to this article from the Alternet web site. It's entitled "Is the U.S. on the Brink of Fascism?" The author cites the historian Robert Paxton as the preeminent expert on how countries become fascist. Whether he really is or not, I have not idea. However, he apparently identifies five stages that countries go through on their way to fascism. According to the author of this article, we have entered stage three. That's when the conservative elites become willing to work with fascists. We're certainly seeing that sort of thing in the Republican Party now. If this guy Paxton is to be believed, that's the turning point. Once a country reaches that stage, he thinks they're in for the whole ride, that there will inevitably be a big struggle for control of the country and its institutions.

We can only hope that he's wrong but, given the dire economic straits that we're still in, and the fact that the administration is doing nothing to address the real causes of the problems, it's hard to disagree. Yeah, the administration and the finance boys have been conducting a PR campaign to try and convince us that things have bottomed out and are turning around, but the facts say otherwise. Most ominous, to my mind, is something that was reported on the naked capitalism web site. The alleged function of all the bailouts was to save the banking industry by reducing overall debt in the economy. However, according to the piece I read, overall debt has actually increased somewhat since all this started. The main source of the problem is that Wall Street and the banks are trying to play the same game they were playing before, and thy're doing everything they can to prevent any sort of true regulation. It's a recipe for disaster and you know what that means, don't you? Sarah Palin, come on down!



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