Rand is NOT a Fascist! Jeez!

Chris M. Sciabarra sciabrrc at is2.NYU.EDU
Sat Jun 24 19:18:39 MDT 1995

On Sat, 24 Jun 1995, Jim Jaszewski wrote:

> 	This may be where we differ on 'semantics':
> 	Simply being an enemy of the Nazis is no proof that one is not
> himself a fascist, or will not later slide into it.
	I agree... but since fascism is intimately related to
nationalism, corporativism, racism, and authoritarianism, and since Rand
did not defend ANY of these positions, I would say that she does not
qualify as a fascist.

Jim continues:
> 	The post WWII world is FULL of people who fought the Nazis, but
> who I would characterize as being just as fascistic as them.
	Like who, the Soviets perhaps?

Jim continues:
> 	She may have 'opposed' the _explicitly_ fascist opponents of the
> Western governments (I wouldn't know, but after all, she was obviously
> smart enuff to know which side her bread was buttered on), but that
> doesn't mean her 'critique' of U.S. neofascism wasn't an INTERNAL one.
	Being dialectical myself, I would say that there isn't a critique
on earth that is not immanent, that is, internal to its historical and
cultural context.. INCLUDING Marx's.  There is no such thing as a
synoptic vantage point on history.

Jim continues his commentary:

>   She saw big
> > business as the architects of American statism, opposed U. S. entry into
> > Korea and Vietnam,
> 	On moral grounds, I'm sure...
	Yes, partially on moral grounds, but also because she had a
developed critique of the structural needs of statism, which required
militarization and imperialism.

Jim continues:
> 	I call her a fascist because of the company she kept, and because
> of her bizarre philosophy (what I know of 'Objectivism'), which leads
> naturaly(?) to this worship of a 'dynamic leader' type who 'keeps the
> trains running on time' (Gee... where have we seen THIS before..!!)
	If we define people by the company they keep, I guess this makes
me a Marxist.  As for worship of a dynamic leader... Rand DID worship
competence and productive labor; in this regard, she parallels Marx's own
celebration of the synthesizing effects of labor on human development.

Jim asks:

> 	Wasn't she a Balt?
	She was born in St. Petersburg in 1905, and was a Russian Jew,
emigrating in 1926.

On my Rand book, Jim remarks:
> 	A Sisyphean effort I'm sure...

	Well, if Jim's response is any indication... :)

					- Chris
Dr. Chris M. Sciabarra
Visiting Scholar, NYU Department of Politics
INTERNET:  sciabrrc at is2.nyu.edu (NOTE NEW ADDRESS)

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