If Americans Don’t Stand Up …  We Will Spiral into Fascism

MY TURN-The image of the average American, living in a world of oblivion and self-absorption is playing out in a sad truth.

From those who proclaim that they aren’t interested in either side of the political realm to the people that simply don’t want to “get involved” in politics, their apathy and ignorance has allowed the entrance of a fascist regime; and they are too busy with their little lives to notice. 

For those that have lived under the hyper-nationalistic and oppressive clenched fist of fascism, this picture is all too real. The look of horror on the faces of many around the globe as they see what is happening, while average Americans worry about their kid’s soccer games or what to take to the neighborhood picnic. Like an Orwellian story that is becoming a reality, those that they have allowed to be in charge are destroying every remaining vestige of what was left of our Democracy…while Americans enact the behavior of “pod people.” This immediate gratification, short-attention span that so many have embraced has become the main downfall. For many, as long as the economy of the moment is good, they choose to ignore the warning signs that can bring about a total collapse. 

It took only two generations of ignoring the history that occurred in both Germany and Italy for the next group of people to be unaware of the symptoms and behavior in the rise of a dictatorship. The signs are all there, but for those that are too delusional in their little pathetic lives, they refuse to accept them and instead, turn to government approved so-called “news” narratives to blame other cultures and religions for their problems. It is the same story, over and over again. Racist bigots choose minorities to lash out against and make use of the brainwashing propaganda to validate their sick beliefs. They use a twisted form of pseudo-Christianity to attack those that are powerless and vulnerable in their attempt to turn them into the enemy. A few years ago, it was the Muslims, now it is the Mexicans, along with anyone that made an attempt to escape into our country without using the official channels that they couldn’t afford. 

The problem has become so bad that these same so-called “patriots” are approving the separation of the littlest of children from their parents, putting them in jails and even selling them off to interested parties. 

We are now seeing the extreme right not only praise Putin and Russia, but make comments that Russia is our friend, while our allies as well as all news sources that don’t abide by the required placating of the dictatorship are “fake”. It is the same tale that occurred in the past when Nazis and Brown Shirts yelled “Lugenpresse” (false press). 

How Bad Does it Have to Get Before the Idiots Wake Up?

Right wing extremists made feeble attempts in the past to try to show that liberal views incorporated fascist ideologies. But the mere terms of “Liberal” and “Fascism” are on diversely opposite realms, with fascism and dictatorships governing, ruling and punishing all that do not comply with their belief system and liberals opening the doors for individuals, education and good health. For those that are educated on the history of these behaviors, there are 14 characteristics of fascism, and the Republicans are supporting the Trump administration as they have now crossed over and adopted all of them. 

For the first time in our country, we as a people, are allowing a full government takeover. 

This isn’t a tired cliché, it is a reality. The spineless Republicans, who have devoted so many years to obstructing, proving that they have no clue how to “lead”, have been pushing their own agenda of greed and deliriously dancing with their drunken power. They could care less that Trump has brought in a completely inept administration or that his appointments have been designed to undermine the very departments that they are in charge of. To them, it’s exactly what they want as they rip off the coffers of the country and jam the contents into their own personal money bags. They don’t dare make any negative comments because they know the hateful and vindictive nature of Trump and are quivering in fear that he will attack them. 

Trump has violated every single aspect of respect, dignity and honor that has long been held in the White House — and no one is holding him responsible. Instead, both the GOP and Trump have been taking money and making plans with the Russians for the sole purpose of the complete destruction of America so that they can redesign it under their own guidelines.

(Image Source: DailyKos) 

For God’s Sake — Become Educated and Stop Watching Fox 

One of the key aspects of a fascist dictatorship is in the preparation. It requires a perfect formula of the poorly educated combined with a steady stream of propaganda brainwashing. This was achieved when President Reagan destroyed the “Fairness Doctrine” act, allowing any media source to spew whatever lies that they wanted under the auspices of “news.” Thus, Fox was born, and since Rupert Murdoch, the father of “Fox” was a close friend of Reagan, they worked to create what would become a “government approved” brainwashing machine that could legally relate only an average of 18% truth…and the gullible fools believed it. 

I wrote a 3-part series that details the behaviors of the various fascists of the past and compares it to the actions of Trump and his supporters: Is The Trump Administration a Fascist Regime? 

It includes much of what we are seeing today: hate of cultures/religions, hyper-nationalism as so-called “patriotism,” removing credibility of the media in all but government approved sources, dismissal of all allies, praise of dictators in the world, twisting the agenda of liberals, encouraging a cloistered country, etc. 

The history of Hitler, the Nazis and the horrors of World War II were once covered in our educational processes. Even the poorest of schools watched the videos of the insanity of Hitler and his speeches as well as his constant requirement for rallies and support. Just viewing it made our stomachs turn and then, of course, there were images of those kept in the concentration camps. We listened as our parents or grandparents who fought in this war recounted the absolute evil and disgust that they felt as they battled against a tyrant and the people that supported him. 

The cry of “fascism” and “dictator” may be one that people roll their eyes to, but these are the individuals that need to be educated the most. There are only a few media sources that are brave enough to step forward and make the true accusations, and one of them is The Inquirer, in Philadelphia. They included an article entitled: The week Trump went full dictator and no one tried to stop him, in which they state: 

 “The main reason that Trump violates long-standing norms and established rules or tells so many easily disprovable lies from the presidential podium, is because he knows that no one will stop him. And that exercise of unchallenged power isn’t just a weird quirk of the Trump presidency. It is, rather, its driving force.” 

One word describes the massive erosion of American democracy that’s accelerated in recent days. And I’m not talking about anything that Roseanne Barr tweeted or even the C-word (which, by the way, is uncalled for and never appropriate)  — the epithets that managed to dominate the TV news cycle in a culture that loves fighting its culture wars. 

No, I’m talking about forbearance, and if that word lulls you to sleep, maybe that’s part of the problem. What that term means  --  and it’s laid out brilliantly by political scientists Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt in their 2018 best seller with the chilling title, How Democracies Die-- is not deploying one’s institutional prerogatives to the hilt, even if it’s legal to do so.”   In other words, an American president can launch a nuclear first strike, add justices to pack the Supreme Court, fire prosecutors investigating him or his family or, failing that, issue full pardons to his allies or even perhaps himself. There are no laws and clauses in the Constitution to stop him from doing these things. Only tradition and a sense of what’s right and what’s good for America. 

The American experiment has survived for 242 years because even past presidents who violated some of our democratic norms in the worst ways possible still held onto this larger sense of forbearance. Even Richard Nixon, who spied on his enemies and obstructed justice when his burglars were caught, turned over the White House tapes when the Supreme Court ordered him to do so and resigned when the evidence on those tapes was incriminating.” 

Are You Willing to Fight for Democracy? 

Former U.S. Secretary of State, Madeline Albright, recognizes fascism; she lived through it and understands the level of commitment required to combat it. In her NY Times article: Will We Stop Trump Before It’s Too Late?, she says: 

“Today, we are in a new era, testing whether the democratic banner can remain aloft amid terrorism, sectarian conflicts, vulnerable borders, rogue social media and the cynical schemes of ambitious men. The answer is not self-evident. We may be encouraged that most people in most countries still want to live freely and in peace, but there is no ignoring the storm clouds that have gathered. In fact, fascism — and the tendencies that lead toward fascism — pose a more serious threat now than at any time since the end of World War II.” 

She continues with: “If freedom is to prevail over the many challenges to it, American leadership is urgently required. This was among the indelible lessons of the 20th century. But by what he has said, done and failed to do, Mr. Trump has steadily diminished America’s positive clout in global councils.” 

We now know that Trump and his bromance buddy, Putin, are continuing to undermine the very fabric of our Democracy, and that Angela Merkel, of Germany is now the leader of the free world. We have a GOP that has been financially backed by the Russian oligarchs and a percentage of the country that has been successfully brainwashed by sources such as Fox/Breitbart/Sinclair. 

We have to accept the fact that nearly one third of Americans are not just stupid, but dolts. They support an agenda of racism, bigotry, sexism and hate while they idiotically wrap these philosophies with flags and the Bible. There is no success in having discussions with them, because “facts” mean nothing to them and instead, just spur them on to spew out even worse comments and conspiracy theories. 

It is up to the rest of us -- those that have risen above the idiocies and moronic concepts to fight for the country that our forefathers and mothers fought for. With all our failures and mistakes, we know that we have been an experiment, but it is one that the world has viewed with admiration. No other country has had such a wonderful mixture of peoples from so many walks of life to contribute to such a forward movement. 

The time is now — and the entire continued existence of our country rests on all our shoulders. We are the nation that elected President Obama in overwhelming numbers and we can do this again. Time to expose the Orcs in the administration and take our country back.

 

(S. Novi is a journalist who worked in the media and continues to seek out truth and integrity. A liberal and one that is suspicious of cults and empty promises. This piece first appeared on Medium.) Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.