Buchanan a fascist?
Louis N Proyect
lnp3 at columbia.edu
Sun Feb 11 11:19:30 MST 1996
On Sun, 11 Feb 1996, Bradley Mayer wrote:
> appreciated and generally agreed with). The point is: fascism is not
> simply a force to be deployed in the breach by bourgeois society in
> extremis, but attains a transitional form as a permanent structural
> feature of bourgeois society *in this new phase of the epoch of its decay*,
> even in periods of relative political and economic stability. How else
Louis: I have not addressed the whole question of Le Pen, Italian
neofascism, etc. for the simple reason that I tend not to speak about
social movements that I don't have a lot of empirical evidence to work
with. I hope that European comrades can contribute to the discussion
But as to your assertion that fascism "attains a transitional form as a
permanent structural feature of bourgeois society *in this new phase of the
epoch of its decay*, even in periods of relative political and economic
stability", this seems to encapsulate and compress too many themes for me to
comment on intelligently.
Fascism is a counter-revolutionary, violent, extraparliamentary mass
movement. Why would the ruling-class exploit fascism unless it could not
rely on bourgeois democracy to manage its affairs? When bourgeois
democracy is abolished, the ruling-class loses a forum to work out policy
differences. A Fuehrer can decide to launch a suicidal attack on the
USSR, but if there had been bourgeois democracy or even aspects of it,
the German ruling-class might have argued the wisdom of this policy in the
halls of the Reichstag or in the pages of the daily press.
What is the point to talk about a fascist takeover when there is genuine
"stability". What has been going on this country over the last fifteen
years or so is a dismantling of the trade union movement. The unions have
had misleaders and this allowed Reagan, Bush and Clinton to enact
anti-working class policies which allowed a bigger share of surplus
value to be allocated to the capitalist class. The worker's share of the
pie has grown smaller.
There is no left-wing in the United States to challenge this attack. If
there is no left-wing challenge, what is the need for a right-wing
exceptional state based on the personal rule of a psychopath?
By the way, if fascism does arrive, it won't be through the auspices of a
fairly establishment politician like Pat Buchanan, former speech writer for
Nixon and talking-head on various TV shows. I expect that genuine fascist
politicians will have much more in common with characters like Lyndon
Larouche of the US Labor Party or some other figures who appear bizarre right
now. At any rate, it still makes more sense to pay attention to movements
rather than individuals.
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