Protest Alone Won't Stop Fascism

Cooke, Shamus
http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/09/04/protest-alone-wont-stop-fascism/

Publisher:  CounterPunch
Date Written:  04/09/2017
Year Published:  2017  
Resource Type:  Article
Cx Number:  CX21319

Desperate people are vulnerable to fascism, and the desperation is deepening: millions are eyeball deep in debt and 80% live paycheck to paycheck, while skyrocketing healthcare costs and rising rent heat up the social pressure cooker. It's this economic gut punch that the fascists hope to benefit from: as working people struggle to breathe the fascists hope to offer cheap, ready-made oxygen.

Abstract: 
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Excerpt:

The more conscious leaders of the budding fascist movement study history’s lessons. After Boston they made a strategic retreat, recognizing the balance of forces shifted against them. They’ll return to fight another day on more favorable terrain. Meanwhile they’re organizing.

The larger “alt right” white supremacist movement will continue to use ultra-wealthy donors and growing networks to refine their organizing in order to position themselves as the political “solution” to the deepening economic-political crisis experienced by millions of people.

Desperate people are vulnerable to fascism, and the desperation is deepening: millions are eyeball deep in debt and 80% live paycheck to paycheck, while skyrocketing healthcare costs and rising rent heat up the social pressure cooker.

It’s this economic gut punch that the fascists hope to benefit from: as working people struggle to breathe the fascists hope to offer cheap, ready-made oxygen.

The fascist’s ability to attract followers directly depends on the Left’s failure to lead politically. The Left’s inability to organize around a bold politics has allowed the Far Right space to demagogue, since fascist ideas only seem appealing when there’s no viable Left alternative. Without a well organized revolutionary perspective the ideas of the fascist can appear radical and even “revolutionary” to the confused, scared, and desperate. It’s this long game the white supremacists are focused on.

There is a battle of ideas taking place on the internet, college campuses, and in the streets. These ideas cannot be destroyed by street protests or fists alone, especially when fascist soil is being fertilized by economic desperation. The fascist movement is experiencing a quickly evolving renaissance, shedding the provocative symbols from the past while recruiting youth and refining their populist strategy of ‘economic nationalism.’

Whereas the fascists are educating and organizing the unorganized, the Left is often, unwittingly, pushing people into the arms of the fascists by offering confusing or contradictory ideas, allowing the fascists to retrofit Left politics for Far-Right purposes.

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