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Monday, July 21, 2014

Thoughts on the History of Fascism

Did some reading at the Doctor's Office. Thought I'd fill in some of my weak areas on Napoleon III and Bonapartism. When I was reading on Mussolini I found references to "Accion Frances" and wanted to trace them to their origin.  I'm kind of glad I did. 
Before it was known as Fascism, in France they called it "Bonapartism", before it was known as Bonapartism it was known as Caesarism or alternatively "Imperialism". Fascism seems to date to ancient times. Certainly the Second Assyrian Empire had most of the pieces in place: Religious chauvinism, adventurism, fearless leaders, big rapacious armies. The modern form ads some communications and psychological refinements. But the more I study the subject the more I realize that there is something atavistic in most societies and that the kind of xenophobia that gets associated with military adventures and hyper-nationalism is just an expression of the darkside of human nature, akin to the war efforts that Jane Goodall observed by Chimpanzees against baboons and also against other Chimps. Human aggression seems to blot out other forms of rational thinking.
We'd like to think we are better than Chimps. Not sure it's true.
Napoleon III wasn't an unalloyed evil. And most of the severe fascist bloodthirsty expression of France during his time were expressed outwardly at French Colonies rather than at home. And of course he's not remembered much because he really blew it at the end of his reign.  But you can see the same bloodthirsty behaviors whether looking at a Juan Peron or a Mussolini. Come to think of it, also Andrew Jackson, Polk and our dear leader GW Bush.  Hitler, Stalin and Mao were quantitatively different. More a throwback to Martin Luther or the Inquisition, but with mass production of murder. Just thinking. Let's hope they keep blowing it, because fascism blows.

2 comments:

  1. Bloodthirstiness is not limited to fascism. No political system in the modern or ancient world has gotten it right, only a very few smatterings of kind and compassionate leader individuals.

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  2. Bernard Levi calls leftist countries "red fascists". Fascism is the bloodthirstiness itself, the hero worship, the xenophobia, triumphalism and hyper-nationalism, combined with authoritarianism and tyranny.

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