Point of Information

Extremely short one today.

People talk about being “against fascists.”   There are some problems with that, however.  As the founder of Fascism, Benito Mussolini said about the movement:

“All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.”

Some other quotes from the founder of Fascism:

“For this I have been and am a socialist. The accusation of inconsistency has no foundation. My conduct has always been straight in the sense of looking at the substance of things and not to the form. I adapted socialisticamente to reality.”

“It was inevitable that I should become a Socialist ultra, a Blanquist, indeed a communist. I carried about a medallion with Marx’s head on it in my pocket. I think I regarded it as a sort of talisman… [Marx] had a profound critical intelligence and was in some sense even a prophet.”

“But wait,” people claiming fascism isn’t socialism will say, “businesses were still privately owned.” To them, there’s this:

“The Fascist State directs and controls the entrepreneurs, whether it be in our fisheries or in our heavy industry in the Val d’Aosta. There the State actually owns the mines and carries on transport, for the railways are state property. So are many of the factories… We term it state intervention… If anything fails to work properly, the State intervenes. The capitalists will go on doing what they are told, down to the very end. They have no option and cannot put up any fight. Capital is not God; it is only a means to an end.”

Whoever owns the businesses on paper, it is the state that controls them.  If only there were a term for an economic system where the state controls the means of production (capital) for the “public good” (as determined by the state).  Oh, wait.  There is.  It’s called socialism.

So, here’s the thing.  If you think folk who want to reduce the size and scope of government, increase individual liberty including economic freedom, and reduce taxes (particularly since a reduced government will need less money anyway) are “fascists” then you just might be an idiot.

And if you are opposed to those things, then you just might be the fascist whatever you happen to call yourself.

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12 thoughts on “Point of Information”

  1. I once had an interesting discussion with somebody elsewhere about the difference between Fascism and Communism.

    Since the person wasn’t an asshole, he tried to explain it but his explanation was basically “Fascism is about the State” while in “Communism is about the People”.

    IE In Communism, the Totalitarian Government Rules In The Name Of The People while in Fascism the Totalitarian Government Rules In The Name Of The State.

    Of course, I doubt that the regulars here would join me in stating “No Difference”. 😉

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    1. Even that’s more of a theoretical rather than a real distinction. For the Soviet Union “international” meant an international “community” of Russian client states. And both the Fascists and their “turned up to 11” relatives the Nazis went out conquering and to conquer and thus spread their “Nationalism” internationally.

      Thomas Sowell likes to quote Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. with “argue things, not words.” If you look past the words used to describe them, to the “things” those words are describing, a lot of the supposed difference between Fascism and Socialism/Communism goes away.

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    2. The only significant difference between the Soviets and the Nazis was the color of the uniforms. And to some extent the level of training of the individual soldier. The Wehrmacht operated a smaller but more professional force than the Red Army, and the Red Army was handicapped by political executions of Army leaders in the late 30s.

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  2. I have a simpler way of defining Fascism and Communism. Unlike a Democracy, both Fascism and Communism are statist or totalitarian governments. The only differences are how obvious each government tries to controls everything.

    Lots of Progs and Libs like to claim that Fascism is just to the right of a Democracy but that is a total lie promulgated due to either ignorance or willful deception. After WWII the left desperately wanted to separate Fascism from Communism and associate Fascism with the US. One reason was to deceive people about how the two were closely related and create a ‘big lie’ that Fascism and even Nazism were just a hair’s breadth away from our Constitutional Republic for propaganda purposes. They’ve been wildly successful.

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    1. Sarah Hoyt, who was born and raised in Portugal, says that Fascism is in fact, right-wing, BUT ONLY BY EUROPEAN STANDARDS. Since Communism is highly regarded in much of Europe, it is considered centrist, so Fascism must be to the right of it, as it certainly can’t be to the left of it. It is not right-wing by U.S. standards, though it is politically useful to say it is.

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      1. There’s a bit more to it than that.

        Marxism was partially inspired by the French Revolution, and a big part of the European Left/Right spectrum is more class-oriented than economic.

        So to us, the National Socialist German Worker’s Party was obviously Left wing, because we see the spectrum as primarily economic.
        But the Nazis also lauded their aristocracy and gentry classes. (Sure, they confiscated their capital, but left them their titles, and held them up as models to be emulated.) They promulgated myths about the German monarchs of the past, which went poorly with the Marxist view of serfdom triumphant.

        There are defensible reasons for the fascist governments to be labeled “Right Wing” in a European context.
        But ONLY in a European context.

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        1. Even there, though, it was nothing more than window dressing. A true “right wing” in the sense of the French Revolution would have put Friedrich Wilhelm Victor August Ernst back on the German Throne rather than under Gestapo supervision.

          Frankly, the Nazis were happy to use any display that they thought would help drum up support, but it was all window dressing, an illusion. But it’s very popular these days (and probably always has been) to look at the window dressing without considering the underlying structure.

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  3. Have just been reading Guenter Reiman’s “The Vampire Economy”. Very enlightening, although I can’t read it for long sessions. Could be a case study for Heyek’s “The Road to Serfdom” (I keep meaning to go and check the bibliograhy for TRTS, published five years later. Haven’t done it yet.)

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