The New Fascism

I notice that people generally use “fascism” to mean some political development they don’t like.

After 9-11, the West could have treated the threat of Al Qaeda and other Islamic terrorists as primarily a law enforcement problem. Instead, the Bush administration decided to launch a war on terror, and claimed, without evidence, that the country was hit on 9-11 because people like Osama Bin Laden hated our freedom. Then we got all sorts of right-wing rhetoric about Islamo-fascism.

So instead of looking at Islamic terror as primarily a matter for law enforcement to deal with, it became widely seen as a civilizational war where the forces of freedom were doing battle with the forces of darkness.

At the time, there were people such as Mickey Kaus who said we should regard Islamic terror as primarily a law enforcement issue rather than civilization issue. In retrospect, they were right.

Now we have the Democrats, the MSM and our elites engaged in a civilizational war against white nationalism and the new threat of fascism to our democratic institutions. Given that the overwhelming majority of white nationalists are law abiding, that might be a mistake. Why not look at the extreme right and the extreme left as primarily a law enforcement issue when those extremes break the law?

Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt says that when you make something sacred, you can’t see it clearly and you can’t compromise effectively. For the left, the battle against fascism is a sacred fight just as the fight against Islamo-fascism was a sacred fight for the right.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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