Sunday, January 24, 2010

Rants and Signals: Hello Fascism, Hello!

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower
When I was growing up in the late '50s, 1960s, my mother often told me that in the future, when I was an adult, the world was going to be very different. Fascism was going to be alive and well in the U.S. I remember my mother telling me that the McCarthy witch hunt wasn't a fluke, merely a preview of things to come. . . where I, as a child, naive and optimistic, could simply not believe that such horrible things could happen again, that "the people" would ever allow Big Business to rule, racism to thrive, poverty to continue, religious intolerance to live on, my mother saw the signs. 
The most common feature of fascism cited in contrast to socialism is the fact that neither Hitler nor Mussolini nationalized their nations' industries. Some contend that this difference is also more cosmetic than actual, since both leaders used extreme regulation to control industry, while leaving them in the hands of their owners. Hitler commented on this difference in a letter to Herman Rauschning, where he wrote:

"Of what importance is all that, if I range men firmly within a discipline they cannot escape? Let them own land or factories as much as they please. The decisive factor is that the State, through the Party, is supreme over them regardless of whether they are owners or workers. All that is unessential; our socialism goes far deeper. It establishes a relationship of the individual to the State, the national community. Why need we trouble to socialize banks and factories? We socialize human beings."

It is also possible, since fascism incorporates corporate-ism, that a fascist regime may de-facto nationalize certain key industries, simply by maintaining close personal and/or business relationships with the corporations' owners. ( Webster's On-line Dictionary)
The Supreme Court recently ruled that corporations can pay off politicians. While this has always been the case, it's now legal; out in the open, no pretense of outrage.  Little has been said about this in mainstream media but Keith Olbermann, a ranter of the highest quality, has done it again. This is his best one, even for, or because of, it's truly frightening content:

Juxtaposed with the legally overt Fascist take over of the United States, is the new CBS show "Undercover Boss" where: ". . .CEOs go incognito working menial jobs in their own companies." (Hollywood Reporter) The spin from CBS is this:
This is a show where the boss is on a dual mission,” Lambert explained. “One, he wants to find out what’s really going on on the front line, things he can’t see when he’s back at headquarters. Second, he’s looking for the unsung heroes of the company, so he’s looking for people that deserve some kind of thanks, maybe a promotion. It’s the mixture of kind of comedy that comes from the boss trying to do the front-line jobs and the emotion of these people, these coworkers that he spends time or she spends time with having that recognition that can be extremely emotional, and that was the idea behind the show.”
Premium Hollywood
I'm not sure what my point is, it seems enough to just rant, to point out the spooky juxtapositions, the happy mindless talk of the media, the silence of many around as these signals continue to beam incessantly around us.

Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961
Hat tip to piglipstick for the Olbermann clip.


  1. We live in an apathetic culture where the people look for, and only read, the bold type and ignore the standard font -- the one used to purchase our souls while we are distracted by bright lights and pretty colors.

  2. "The harder [these sons of bitches] squeeze, the more of us will slip through their fingers." Good piece, Regan. Way to squeeze through!
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