CharlesB at SPAMCNCL.ci.detroit.mi.us
Thu Aug 12 15:08:13 MDT 1999
>>> "Charles Brown" <CharlesB at CNCL.ci.detroit.mi.us> 08/12/99 04:53PM >>>
>>> Carrol Cox <cbcox at ilstu.edu> 08/12/99 04:24PM >>>
(1) The question of whether Fascism *can* happen here (of course it
can) is not the same as the question of whether Fascism *will* or is
apt to happen here -- the latter question depends partly on the *need*
the u.s. ruling class might feel to transform the most successful
for repression in world history -- the U.S. constitution (written and
unwritten). A year or two ago Doug posted a list of the accomplishments
of the Clinton administration and queried -- with all this, who needs
Charles: Whether or not Fascism or some comparable open terrorist rule comes to the
U.S., depends on what the classes do. The Left's "job" is to rally the working class
to prevent it.
The U.S. Constitution is a bourgeois-democratic charter. The bourgeois-democratic
republic is the preferred form of bourgeois rule, but in the early twentieth Century
crisis in Europe, the bourgeoisie resorted to undemocratic rule to thwart working
class takeover. This resulted in the most intense and rapid mass murder in the
history of humanity. Despite the enormous murder and repression of the normal
bourgeois-democratic republic , there is good reason to seek to avoid another even
greater fascist initiated WWII type slaughter.
In other words , as bad as Clinton is, Leftists should not be indifferent to the
difference between Clintonism and fascism.
(2) The label "fascist" tends to obscure the horrors which actually
existing capitalist democracy can perpetrate. After all, the genocide
with which Jim is most concerned, that of Native Americans, took
place within a democratic, not a fascist, social order.
Charles: The term "fascist" just keeps us mindful of the history lesson described
above. It is no reason to fight normal, regular capitalism any less.
The horrors of the genocide against Native Americans or the enslavement of Africans
should not be used as an argument to see bourgeois democracy as no different than the
specifics of bourgeois fascism.
(3) When we raise the question, then, is fascism *apt* to happen
in the U.S., Jim's list of horrors tends the opposite to his conclusion.
On the basis of his arguments we can conclude that fascism is not
apt to happen in the U.S. simply because the U.S. ruling class can
perpetrate its crimes without the recourse to a formal totalitarian
state. Rather, Jim to maintain his conclusions would have to argue
that such lists as LBO and occasional anti-racist letters to the
editor are a threat to U.S. capitalism. So far there is no evidence
that this is the case.
Charles: Fascism occurred especially to suppress socialism. That the U.S. ruling class
extracts its pounds of flesh from people of color by another dynamic of capitalism,
doesn't fulfill the need to suppress socialism when the working class movement grows
in the U.S. Thus, Carrol's reasoning disarms the working class' theory, drops its
guard against a real fascist potential of the future.
(4) Leaving aside the question of whether history ever does repeat
itself, we can say with some confidence that it seldom if ever repeats
itself under the same label. If fascism comes to the U.S. it will not
come under the label of fascisim -- in fact it would be far more
apt to come under an anti-fascist label. Hence the real irrelevance
of the scattered groups self-labelled as Nazi.
Charles: Many of the proto-neo-fascists groups don't call themselves Nazis, but the
notiion that there shouldn't be active opposition to Nazi named groups because history
rarely repeats under the same label is off.
(5) I have my doubts that capitalist democracy will indefinitely serve
the needs of the U.S. capitalist class, so *at some point* there will
be a real danger of an attempt to destroy even the democracy that
now exists. But that attempt will not be under the formal banner of
"Fascism" and anti-fascist slogans will not organize the opposition
Charles: The point is not the word "fascism" ! There is not a problem that we will be
watching the "fascists" or for "fascism" and get caught by it popping up under a
different name. We watch all with ideologies and statements of purpose that are
"fascist" despite their names.
(6) The most destructive form of racism currently is that which presents
itself as *anti-racist* (e.g., all the attacks on affirmative action as
Louis's account of the KKK in Houston is of great interest -- and I
certainly agree that we should always pressure the police to enforce
the law under such conditions -- but to make the KKK or some
Nazi group the main focus of our concern is to fail in the battle
the most serious forms of racism.
Charles: Correct. The struggle against proto-neo-fascists is not the main anti-racist
struggle. The milder,widespread form is more important to defeat. However, both should
be struggled against.
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