What To Say

There really can be no meaningful discourse when those who disagree with you think this:

What all of them miss, importantly, is the role of movement leaders — particularly Bush, Cheney, Karl Rove, and the neocons — in encouraging these proto-fascist traits. There is no evidence that they’re doing so because they themselves are actually proto-fascists; rather, I think it remains clear that these people are pro-corporate crony capitalists, and the evidence strongly suggests that they’re indulging this style of politics for the sake of shoring up their numbers and securing their political base. The strongest evidence for this is the ongoing minuet the Bush administration dances with the neo-Confederate faction that now rules the South.

In other words, “movement conservatives” are being molded into a mindset that increasingly resembles classic fascism, but it’s being done by leaders who mostly find this mindset convenient and readily manipulable. Unfortunately, the history of fascism is such that the arrogant corporatist belief that they contain these forces is not well grounded.

What’s important to understand is the real dynamic: A growing populist “movement” is being encouraged increasingly to adopt attitudes that, taken together, become increasingly fascist. Greater numbers of individuals are being conditioned to think alike, and more importantly, to accept an increasingly vicious response to dissent. This does not mean that genuine fascism has arrived as a real political force in America; but it does mean the groundwork is being created for just such a nightmare, by irresponsible politicians tapping into terrible forces beyond their ability to control.

If even “paleo-conservatives” can see this, there’s hope of stopping it. But I think we need to begin with a clear understanding of who, what, and why the fascists are.

The latent fascists who are the biggest problem right now are not Republican leaders. It is their oxyconned, Foxcized, Freeped-out, fanatic army of followers, comprising ordinary people, who pose the long-term problem. Drawing them back from the abyss is the real challenge that confronts us.

We’re not all fascists. We are merely fascistic. And the rest of us are stoopid.

65 replies
  1. 1
    Terry says:

    David needs to look into a mirror and at those with whom he associates on the Left. It is doubtful that the Left has ever been as aligned with fascism as it has become in the last couple of years. Even during the halcyon days of anti-war protests over the Vietnam war, there were grown ups in the leadership ranks of the Left that ultimately kept the movement focused on stopping the war in ways that accommodated the traditions of respect for laws and the rights of others. Not anymore. The Left and the Democratic Party are merging into a body that’s dominated by the fascism of Moveon, Media Matters, ANSWER and others.

  2. 2
    vnjagvet says:

    This is an interesting example of “projection”.

    Now that opinion leadership is not confined to the left portion of the political spectrum, those who have been used to sitting in that catbird seat do not want to share it.

    This seems to me to be a verbose exercise in name calling and demonizing, so as to try to delegitimise the hard-won but clear successes throughtout the middle east.

    Fodder for the True Believer audience, but not worth arguing about.

  3. 3
    Kimmitt says:

    You’re totally right — even the Powerline guys agree with you that The whole mainstream of the [Democratic] Party is engaged in an effort that is a betrayal of America.

    The Dems are the fascists, and they’re totally projecting.

    After all, if that weren’t true, why would Powerline say that Jimmy Carter is “on the other side”?

  4. 4
    Kimmitt says:

    Also, you’re not a movement conservative, you’re a libertarian, so Neiwert’s post has nothing whatsoever to do with you.

  5. 5

    More to the point, I think it’s clear I’m speaking about a specific kind of “movement conservative” — the rabid Freeper types who brook no dissent and shout down anyone strays from the party line. Surely you’ve had a little experience with those folks yourself, John.

    Secondly, I was careful to use the term “latent fascists” to describe them; that is, they’re not all the way there yet, but they’re working on it.

    Recall the top of the post where I described how ordinary white supremacists actually seem. You may not believe this, but in my experience, those “normative” fascists are only a few degrees removed in their worldview from the more rabid Freeper element.

    Please don’t make a straw man out of my argument, John.

  6. 6

    There’s a couple of things worth keeping in mind about any political movement that gains control of government.

    First, history shows that the farther the movement is from the traditional political center of American politics, the more quickly it engages in excesses, or at leasts tries to. This tends to trigger a reaction leading to serious setbacks.

    Secondly, most Americans aren’t ideological in the sense of adhering to some formula. They are also restless. This means a seemingly successful movement can see its tide go out fairly quickly as circumstances change or even as the other side offers an especially attractive, charismatic candidate.

    Probably the biggest, easiest-to-make mistake is assuming that what is, now, is what’s going to be in two, three or four years.

  7. 7

    Fascism, invented by Benito Mussolini, is a system of totalitarian control over a nation’s economy. In contrast to communism, it leaves nominal title to property in private hands, but lashes it down so tightly with regulations, and drains away so great a fraction of the profit from all enterprise, that no rights remain with the title holder, except for the right to claim the property is “his.”

    Nazism intensified Mussolini’s fascism by extending its grip to include the private lives of citizens; as Hitler boasted, the only private person in his Reich was one who was asleep. Atop that, Hitler provided the German people with a scapegoat for their defeat in World War I: the Jews had betrayed them. Inflamed as they were with hatred, they were less likely to notice the shackles being fastened upon them.

    If fascism as described here, from its historical basis, doesn’t resemble the aims of the American Left far better than the generally pro-freedom Right, perhaps Mr. Neiwert will explain why. And statements of intention don’t count, Mr. Neiwert; Mussolini and Hitler would have told us that their intentions were of the best.

  8. 8

    There’s a grain of truth in Neiwert’s post. However, he also has a self-discrediting tendency to find a fascist/white racist everywhere someone disagrees with him or his brand of “liberalism.” His understanding of FReepers is flawed as well. FR has not yet descended to the level of BlogsForBush or Polipundit. There are frequent posts and comments at FR critical of Our Leader, but my comments at B4B that are even slightly critical of Bush or the Republican Party have been swiftly deleted.

  9. 9

    With pseudo-intellectual beard tugging analysis like this extant, it’s no wonder the guy in charge of The Gallery Of Bush = Hitler Allusions seems to have quit trying to keep up, back in November.


    No thoughtful person feels comfortable in a “mob mentality” setting. But this is transparently a case of “There’s just enough of me/ But way too many of thee.”

  10. 10
    BumperStickerist says:

    hmmmm … I think the parallel between Dr. Dean’s rise to power more closely mimics that of Hitler than whomever the guy who’s in charge of the RNC.

    Kos/Atrios/Dem Underground as the Brownshirts

    … Josh Marshall/Matt Y. as the more guile SS.

  11. 11
    BumperStickerist says:

    to continue – Dean’s rhetoric is certainly Hitler-ish in its nature if not Hitler-esque.

    The bombast, rhetorical flourishes, dire predictions …

    but, no, I guess it’s the Freepers that we must worry about.

  12. 12
    Kimmitt says:

    to continue – Dean’s rhetoric is certainly Hitler-ish in its nature if not Hitler-esque.

    I’m dying to hear this — any quotes in particular, or is this just psychosis?

  13. 13
    RW says:

    You’re truly a talented writer. Much more so than I’ll ever be.
    That said, your penchant for seeing quasi-fascists around every corner has made you seem sorta loony.

    A lot.

  14. 14
    TJ Jackson says:

    I wonder which phrase is more common today, “I hate jews” or I hate religious fundamentalists/Christians?” When describing opposition which side is phrone to describing their opposition as “sub-human?”

    The author of this is phrone to some grotesque exaggeration and projection. If there is fascism is alive and well which is the party that wishes to disarm its citizens and centralize all functions in Washington?

  15. 15
    jreid says:


    “I hate Republicans and everything they stand for.”


  16. 16
    Terry says:

    I think RW nailed it. David N. has gone so far over the edge that he is no longer salvageable. Any day now he will be joining up with Alexander Cockburn to jointly author some bilge about the growth of neo-fascism in Bush America.

  17. 17
    Bob says:

    Bush isn’t even Mussolini.

  18. 18
    Bob says:

    Francis Porretto should read George Seldes’ FACTS AND FASCISM, a contemporaneously written account of fascism in Japan, Italy and Germany, and fascist movements and supporters in America before and during WWII. Then he would actually know what fascism was and is.

    It was corporate excess, dressed up in patriotism, slathered with hatred for any identifiable outsider. Criminality with epaulets and a marching band.

    If the word “fascism” had never been coined, what is going on between the Bush Administration and business is still terrible for the vast majority of Americans.

    I salute Mr. Neiwart for his work, and I pity those of you who have no clue about what is happening and how dangerous it can be to you and your loved ones.

  19. 19
    vnjagvet says:


    I daresay Seldes’ recognized the forms of government in Italy, Germany and Japan were essentially dictatorships, with no constitutional tradition.

    How do you think our constitutional republic can suddenly be turned into a dictatorship without some sort of coup d’etat?

    Somehow I missed Mr. Neiwert’s explanation of how that happened.

    Where were the Senators, Representatives, Judges, Justices, Governors, State Legislators, Mayors, City Councilmen?

    Asleep at the switch, I guess.

    Or in cahoots.

    His thesis sounds something like the “workers of the world, unite” message of the Debs crowd early in the past century.

    Am I missing something?

  20. 20
    Aaron says:

    Corporatism is the preferred economic form of fascism:


    or if you trust wikipedia.


    I don’t think this is what FREEPers have in mind.

    Let’s keep in mind the closest we ever had to a fascist leader in the USA was Huey Long…

    Let’s check wikipedia…

    hmmmm, they don’t mention his political party do they?



  21. 21
    Aaron says:

    I just amended wikipedia to include a sentence that Long was a member of the Democrats….let’s see what happens.

  22. 22
    timekeeper says:

    It’s gone already, Aaron.

  23. 23
    Bryant says:

    Actually, it looks like it was moved to the first paragraph of the article.

    For the purposes of discussion, I suspect most people would be willing to stipulate that both the Democrats and the Republicans have dark figures in their past. Huey Long is definitely one of those.

    If you study his programs a little, though, you’ll find that he does not fit the bill. As Aaron points out, corporatism is an important element of any fascist movement; Long was quite the opposite. He made his early name by fighting corporate influence and control over Louisiana. Dictator? Yep. Fascist? Nope.

  24. 24
    Veeshir says:

    I think the problem is the differing definitions of “fascism”.
    To most people it’s the sublimation of all to a militaristic “State”.
    To people like that author, it’s “People who disagree with him and point out where he’s wrong.”

  25. 25
    Aaron says:


    There’s a misconception that Corporatism is about corporations…it’s not. It’s about society and the economy being run by groups rather than individuals. For example, Unions, Churches, etc. Not corporations.

    Everyone had to unite for the common good, etc., etc.

    Huey Long is definitely in the corporatist mold.

  26. 26
    Aaron says:

    Now, before I suggested hat Wiki didn’t have Huey’s party mentioned at all, I checked Ronald Reagan. His entry mentions he was a Democrat and then turned GOP.

    I re-check Wiki now, and yep…they’ve removed the party affiliation.

    I will have to check some other pols…say Strom Thurmond?

  27. 27
    Aaron says:

    Okay, now Wiki has Huey’s party in the fist sentence, again.


  28. 28
    Bob says:

    I am always amazed at the inability to see anything other than black and white in this group. It’s always Republican v. Democrat, us versue them, even when that model isn’t necessarily very good. Any attack on the Bush Administration is an attack on all Republicans, and if you aren’t Republican you are Democrat. People throw up Bill Clinton as some sort of magnetic pole on the other side of the political spectrum. Clinton was a product of the DLC, itself heavily owned by corporate power. Remember that it was Al Gore who debated FOR NAFTA back in 1992.

    This is just an aside.

  29. 29
    RW says:

    I salute Mr. Neiwart for his work, and I pity those of you who have no clue about what is happening and how dangerous it can be to you and your loved ones.

    Two words spring to mind whenever I see such as the above: aluminum foil

    Nice audience you attract, Mr. Neiwart.

  30. 30
    George Saras says:

    Hey there, Bob. Are you still out on furlough for the weekend? Try to stay out of trouble this time.

    And by the way, you are a fine one to be preaching about “..the in ability to see anything other than black or white…” You’re always the first moron off the blocks to scream about “corporate malevolence” at any and all perceived wrongdoing, whether it involves government, politics, or ice cream. Hell, you can’t escape it in your latest post above, you useless idiot. I hope you can make it through the day without anyone having to call out the men in the white coats to cart you back to the loony bin.

    Love ya Babe.

  31. 31
    Bob says:

    v, I often find that people who “tsk tsk” the rise of fascistic tendencies in this country tend to go back to saying that the countries where fascism sprang up had no constitutional tradition, meaning here in your post, I presume, no history of elected representatives, democracy, etc. Italy and Germany both had the apparatus of elected officials in place. During the Weimar Republic there were elections. Rich corporate powers like Fritz Thyssen backed rightwing candidates like Hitler. During this period there were frequent assassinations of political leaders, from radicals like Rosa Luxemborg (I think her name was) to conservative leaders from the Christian Democratic parties. The assassinations narrowed the choices on the ballots. Meanwhile, the extremists like Hitler were well-financed by the wealthy. As the lot of the average German got worse, scapegoats such as Jews and other outsiders were identified as the culprits for Germany’s economic woes. Not ironically, wealthy insider Germans got even richer and more powerful during this period. British and American investments into Germany (led by Brown Bros. Harriman and Prescott Bush, Henry Ford, etc.) built an extraordinary economic dynamo in post-WWI Germany. That is, American investment monies went into the hands of wealthy Germans while the average German was paying off the war costs of the Treaty of Versailles.

    It’s the way that the tax table was set up, not unlike how Bush is restructuring our tax tables. Foreign investment streams upward, while Social Security taxes are borrowed to pay for the tax cuts of the wealthiest 2%. Hmm.

    There was a history of democracy in Italy prior to Mussolini’s takeover. What do you think Garibaldi was fighting for in the 19th Century? Take a look at all those Latin American countries that had democraticly elected governments before they were overthrown by fascist military juntas: Chile, Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina, Guatemala. We could go on, but I think your point about countries with no history of constitutional government has been proven bogus.

    The principles of fascism are pretty simple: acquire power and wealth and use your power and wealth to acquire more power and wealth. Greed beyond comprehension. As such fascism is just a modern equivalent to kings and pharoahs of the past. It’s a state-wide version of organized crime, which would explain why actual, identifiable members of organized crime seem to flourish in fascist societies.

    Where were the Senators and Judges? Oh, some of the leaders just didn’t have the financial backing to defeat the representatives of the wealthy. Some were held up to public scandal and ridicule. Some, like in Weimar Germany, met untimely ends. How would our political landscape have looked like if the Kennedys and King, and those who would have followed from them, had not been killed? How about Congressman Ryan, who was gunned down at Jonestown?

    In any case, most of those public servants who have remained were lined up to receive their own little bag of gold and do what their owners asked of them. I bet that some of them actually believe the crap they say. Just like many of you believe.

  32. 32
    Bob says:

    Because it is so difficult to get one’s hands around a definition of fascism, and because many here seem to know nothing on the subject, here are some definitions I got from the Appendix of FACTS AND FASCISM, 1943:

    Heywood Broun (May 1936):

    I am quite ready to admit that the word Fascism has been used very loosely. Sometimes we call a man a Fascist simply because we dislike him, for one reason or another. And so Ill try to be pretty literal in outlining some of the evidence which I see as the actual danger of Fascism in America. First of all, we need a definition. Fascism is a dictatorship from the extreme Right, or to put it a little more closely into our local idiom, a government which is run by a small group of large industrialists and financial lords. Of course, if you want to go back into recent history, the influence of big business has always been present in our federal government. But there have been some checks on its control. I am going to ask latitude to insist that we might have Fascism even though we maintained the pretense of democratic machinery. The mere presence of a Supreme Court, a House of Representatives, a Senate and a President would not be sufficient protection against the utter centralization of power in the hands of a few men who might hold no office at all. Even in the case of Hitler, many shrewd observers feel that he is no more than a front man and that his power is derived from the large munitions and steel barons of Germany. . . Now one of the first steps which Fascism must take in any land in order to capture power is to disrupt and destroy the labor movement. . . I think it is not unfair to say that any business man in America, or public leader, who goes out to break unions, is laying foundations for Fascism.



    Fascism is a reorganization of society to maintain unequal distribution of economic power and a substitution of barbaric values for individualist civilization.



    Fascism is corporatism.


    Fascism is reaction.


    Fascism, which did not fear to call itself reactionary when many liberals of today were prone before the triumphant beast (Democracy), has not today any impediment against declaring itself illiberal and anti-liberal. . . . Fascism knows no idol, worships no faith; it has once passed, and, if needful, will turn to pass again over the more or less decomposed body of the Goddess of Liberty.


    Palme Dutt:

    The fascist system is a system of direct dictatorship, ideologically masked by the national idea. . . . It is a system that resorts to a popular form of social demagogy (anti-Semitism, occasional sorties against usurers capital and gestures of impatience with the parliamentary yelling shop) in order to utilize the discontent of the petit-bourgeois, the intellectual and other strata of society; and to corruption through the bulding up of a compact and well-paid hierarchy of fascist units, a party apparatus and a bureaucracy. At the same time, Fascism strives to permeate the working class by recruiting the most backward strata of the workers to its ranks, by playing upon their discontent, by taking advantage of the inaction of Social-Democracy, etc. . . .

    The combination of social demagogy, corruption and active White terror, in conjunction with extreme imperialist aggression in the sphere of foreign politics, are the characteristic features of Fascism. In periods of acute crisis for the bourgeoisie, Fascism resorts to anti-capitalistic phraseology, but, after it has established itself at the helm of state, it casts aside its anti-capitalist rattle, and discloses itself as a terrorist dictatorship of big capital.

    Mr. Neiwart’s latest post on his blog seems to be focused on fascism as it is expressed in the working classes. That is only a part of Fascism as a social system.

    In organized crime there are guys who run the numbers and there are guys who order the hits.

  33. 33
    vnjagvet says:


    I do not think you can appropriately characterize either the Weimar Republic or Italy (before or after Garibaldi) as having a real tradition of functioning representative government from top to bottom as has been the case in the USA for over two hundred years.

    Both of those countries had troubled and chaotic histories until after 1945, in spite of relatively homogenious ethnic populations.

    Your reasoning does not persuade me, although I appreciate the time you put into the response.

  34. 34
    Bob says:

    George Saras, doesn’t just insulting people get tiring? Wouldn’t you rather actually talk about the topic? Or maybe read something about what other people know so that you can engage in some discussion?

    I was referring to the Huey Long quote, and how someone had to make sure that it was clear that Long was a Democrat, as if that had any relevance to the current political divide in American politics. The white solid Democratic South became solidly Republican with Nixon’s Southern strategy in 1972. We can debate whether or not the shooting of George Wallace was part of that strategy, but it sure didn’t hurt the Republicans in that election.

    In other words, the political milieu of Huey Long and other Democrats fractured. A few whites along with those African Americans who supported the New Deal stuck with Demos. The rest, who embraced the politics of racial division, went with the Republicans.

  35. 35
    George Saras says:

    Bob has great difficulty in forming his own views on many, if not most, subjects. His post just ahead of the one above with the “definitions of fascism”, is as overly verbose as always, and is filled with concepts, ideas and many unattributed, lengthy excerpts from the writings of others. Bob seems to be particularly enamored of Kevin Phillip’s largely discredited book, “American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Poilitics of Deceit in the House of Bush.”

    I guess when one is unemployed – or is it “unemployable?” – one has to do something to try to fill out the days. When one has a limited facility for processing information, data, facts and concepts, one such as Bob turns to the work of others. Nothing wrong in that, I suppose…although if one uses others’ words in essentially verbatim fashion, they should probably give credit to the original source. What about it, Bob? You credited the sources for the definitions…what about your lengthy posts that strive to give yourself a patina of intellectual gravitas?

  36. 36
    vnjagvet says:


    I am a transplanted southerner having come to Atlanta directly after my tour in Vietnam in June, 1968, after being raised and schooled in Pennsylvania. From then until the early 1990’s, if you wanted to make a difference in national politics from this part of the country, you were a Democrat.

    I was an active supporter of Sam Nunn and Wyche Fowler, both Democrats.

    Georgia’s state government was completely under Democratic control until the end of the twentieth century.

    Your southern history lesson is not accurate. Republican inroads in the south began with Reagan’s election, but were not successful until relatively recently.

    And they had less to do with race than your post suggests.

    As the national leadership of the democratic party became more secular and left-leaning, moderate democrats identified more with the core principals espoused by the republican leadership.

    If you don’t believe me, ask John Breaux and Sam Nunn.

  37. 37
    George Saras says:

    vnjaqvet – If you haven’t observed it yet, you will soon pick up on the fact that Bob doesn’t know shit from Shinola. His most coherent thoughts, however stupid they are at the core, are typically lifted from others.

  38. 38
    Kimmitt says:

    Reid: I see a lot of different versions of the quote mentioned on various right-wing blogs, but what I don’t see is anything resembling a full transcript anywhere.

    Putting aside the question of the veracity of the quotation, isn’t comparing a statement of strong partisanship to a call for genocide more or less pissing on the graves of six million Jews?

  39. 39
    RW says:

    Putting aside the question of the veracity of the quotation, isn’t comparing a statement of strong partisanship to a call for genocide more or less pissing on the graves of six million Jews?

    That was directed at Mr. Neiwart, right?


  40. 40
    Bob says:

    v, check the electoral votes in 1972. Political trends are not absolute, but they are verifiable. The South of Huey Long is gone, and the South of Trent Lott is here. Pretending that something that Huey Long said somehow is connected to the present-day Democratic Party is a tad foolish.

    By the way, Sam Nunn is also gone.

  41. 41
    Bob says:

    v, now the hurdle is that we have to have a working democracy for two hundred years in order to be protected against fascism? We had slavery for most of the first hundred, and then virtual slavery for African Americans for most of the second hundred.

    Your belief that America somehow is immune from fascism because of our traditions is based on what? That we haven’t had a fascist government?

    In any case, v, I appreciate your time and suggest you pursue some writing on the subject, especially DREAMER OF THE DAY, a book by a fellow named Coogan, I believe, about an American post-war fascist named Yockey who was a philosopher and theoretician for the international fascist movement. Also, INSIDE THE LEAGUE, about the post-war international fascist movement, to include American fascists. Also, AMERICAN SWASTIKA, about American fascism.

  42. 42
    Bob says:

    George, I gave attributions for the definitions of fascism. You know, the names of the people who said those quotes. Attributions.

    Sorry about the verbose part, but that’s what they said. They didn’t draw cartoons, fella.

    You know, you really shouldn’t hold such a grudge. Why not actually go out and read some things?

    By the way, who discredited the Kevin Phillips book? Matt Drudge or Jeff Gannon? Must have been someone on FOX.

  43. 43
    Bob says:

    By the way, v, maybe you are leaning a little more to the right and are maybe more religiously centered, as opposed to the Democratic Party being more to the Left and more secular. What specifically has offended you about the Democratic Party?

  44. 44
    Birkel says:

    History and Southern history in particular is not a Democratic strong point. They fail to recognize the *actual* timeline for losing the South because it doesn’t fit the “Southerners are racist” meme they’ve created to denigrate “the others” and elevate themselves.

    But having lived in Boston, Michigan, Tennessee and NC I’ll bet my bona fides for describing the nation’s racism is a bit stronger than our generic Bob’s.

  45. 45
    Kimmitt says:

    They fail to recognize the *actual* timeline for losing the South because it doesn’t fit the “Southerners are racist” meme they’ve created to denigrate “the others” and elevate themselves.

    Oh, do enlighten us — the Dems lost the South *before* Nixon’s Southern Strategy, then?

  46. 46
    Aaron says:


    Capitalists supported fascist parties in the 30’s because communism was very strong and they were anti-communist.

    In fact most fascist groups came out of LABOR movements.

    It’s not that capitalists have fascist tendencies but that they have anti-communist tendencies (and for good reason.)

  47. 47
    RW says:

    *** the Dems lost the South *before* Nixon’s Southern Strategy, then?***

    Bob, you’d do well to read up on history. The “Dems” didn’t lose the south, Humphrey did.
    The “Dems” held the south until recently. Georgia has its first GOP governor since reconstruction (as well as house & senate). Louisiana just elected its first GOP senator since the same period. TN, VA and NC are all governed by Dems.

    On a national level, the Dems lose because they’re too far left. That they, and some of their followers, are blind to that reason is part in parcel of why they’ll continue to get their asses kicked. Keep it up.

  48. 48
    George Saras says:

    Bob, with each succeeding post, you display a shallowness of thought, an absence of intellect, and an alarming tendency to believe every crackpot theory you’ve ever read (of course, the theory has to assault the US). In short, you are not worthy of attention, you useless moron.

    Love ya Babe.

  49. 49
    Bob says:

    Let us go back and read what was written. When Huey Long was in office in Louisiana it was the solid South, solidly Democratic. That’s where the term “yellow dog Democrat” came from, that someone would rather vote for a yellow dog if it was a Democrat rather than a Republican. The Republican Party had a long history of bad publicity in the South since Reconstruction.

    Yes, there are places in Florida where the local Democratic Party is still in control of county politics. BUT the county votes 70% for Republican candidates for the House and the Senate, and the President. I don’t have an almanac around the house, but I presume anyone interested could take a survey of House and Senate seats, governorships and electors for President over the last sixty years or so and note that there are more Republicans being voted into office now than back in Huey Long’s time.

    By the way, if we go back, I was commenting on how people here tend to feel the need to make everything black and white when it comes to politics. So if you didn’t like Huey Long, then it’s okay to point out that he was a Democrat, as if being a Democrat in Depression-era Louisiana is a direct equivalent to John Kerry or Ted Kennedy.

    It’s just not that way. I raised the point that the conservative political current that runs through the South was usurped during the Nixon 1972 campaign, and that since then the Republicans have made big inroads. This is actual history. Nixon had a “Southern Strategy” and every Republican candidate for President since then has attempted it (the first Geo. Bush wasn’t successful against Clinton, but he tried).

    Birkel raises the “Southerns are racist” card, fair enough, although it’s not as simple as that. And yes, there is racism all over America, you are right, Birkel. African Americans were slaves and the history of the colonial South and thereafter has been the suppression and denigration of those peoples. Native Americans were systematicaly killed in a genocide that Hitler admired (he claimed to have gotten his idea for concentration camps from American Indian reservations). White people were taught that these outsiders were an economic threat to them. That’s why Henry Ford brought blacks into his plants to break strikes. When the unions opened up to all workers, black and white and yellow, native or foreign-born, then they were able to make headway against the corporations and their fascist-loving owners.

    Yes, Henry Ford was a big Hitler-backer, too, Aaron. Those workers are really scary, best cozy up to fascists, eh?

  50. 50
    Bob says:

    George, thank you for your thoughtful ad hominems. Perhaps next time, for the first time, you can actually address the content of one of my posts instead of your typical hateful, violent psychotic ramblings imagining doing physical harm to those who aren’t part of your bully boy gang.

  51. 51
    RW says:

    I don’t have an almanac around the house, but I presume anyone interested could take a survey of House and Senate seats, governorships and electors for President over the last sixty years or so and note that there are more Republicans being voted into office now than back in Huey Long’s time.

    No need for Long….go all the way back to 1992, Bob, and look at the south and how it voted. Both locally and nationally.

    I bet you’ll be surprised.
    However, it will probably cut into the talking-point-fed “Nixon southern strategy” that sometimes works (when Dems lose) and sometimes doesn’t (when Clinton wins and the south is ruled almost completely by Dems, as it has been until the last decade).

    Make no doubt about it: It’s nothing more than a ready made excuse for when your guys lose. And one that you’ve read from some activist source and are attempting to pass along here.

    And no one’s buying it.

    You guys lost the south in the last few years and it YOUR fault and it’s up to YOU go win it back.

  52. 52
    Kimmitt says:

    You guys lost the south in the last few years and it YOUR fault

    You’re right — as soon as LBJ signed the Civil Rights Bill, the “Solid South” was due to inertia at best. The Democratic Party’s refusal to treat gays as second-class citizens was the final nail in the coffin.

    You find Dems in the South the same way you find Republicans in the northeast. They’re rather different from their colleagues in other parts of the nation, and they tend to have specific reasons why they exist.

  53. 53
    Kimmitt says:

    You know, we Dems have our share of loonies or people who shoot their mouths off. But I think you’d have a hell of a time finding many Congressmen or women who’re advocating starting a nuclear war of choice:

    Speaking at a veterans celebration at Suncreek United Methodist Church in Allen, Texas, on Feb. 19, Johnson told the crowd that he explained his theory to President Bush and Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas) on the porch of the White House one night.

    Johnson said he told the president that night, Syria is the problem. Syria is where those weapons of mass destruction are, in my view. You know, I can fly an F-15, put two nukes on em and Ill make one pass. We wont have to worry about Syria anymore.

  54. 54
    RW says:

    Hey, Kimmitt, isn’t it about time for you to list all those racist Democrats who switched to the GOP after the civil rights bill?

    I mean, I’ve only been waiting for about a year, which was around the first time you tried to parrot that line. How’s about it? You’ve had enough time.

    The Democratic Party’s refusal to treat gays as second-class citizens was the final nail in the coffin.

    You mean when they’re not investigating and outing their private lives?

  55. 55
    RW says:

    You know, we Dems have our share of loonies or people who shoot their mouths off.

    That’s fine, so do the GOPers. Not to many of them rush to hijack a thread because of something they read Duncan Black blog on, though.

    Really, if we want to read eschaton we’ll go there. No need being a shill.

  56. 56
    Bob says:

    RW, George Wallace was a Democrat. Barnett, the governor of Mississippi was a Democrat. Both wanted to continue segregation in their states and tried to use state (government) power to do that. How about Lester Maddox? What’s the point of this exercise, RW? Don’t you read history books?

  57. 57
    RW says:

    What’s the point of this exercise, RW?

    To point out how your original recitation of someone else’s talking points fall flat when looking at the history of southern politics.

    Don’t you read history books?

    Bob, thank you for your thoughtful ad hominem. I’m sure I beat my children, as well. Of course, they probably know that the south was ruled by Dems as recently as 1994.

  58. 58
    Kimmitt says:

    You mean when they’re not investigating and outing their private lives?

    You can’t “out” the “private life” of a man who advertises for same-sex escort services on the internet. It’s not “outing” to report a man’s profession.

  59. 59
    RW says:

    So, the official kossack line is that you guys didn’t out the fellow, eh?

    Let’s see how that BS flies outside of the left-wing echo chamber, where it originated.

  60. 60
    RW says:

    BTW, Kimmitt, I’m still waiting on that list of names.

    And I won’t forget.

  61. 61
    Bob says:

    RW, My point has been proved. My point wasn’t even specifically about Southern politics. It was about how time changes and how the world is not black and white.

    Let’s try this:

    1. The politics of Louisiana in the Great Depression has changed over the past seventy years.

    2. The world is not just black and white, good and evil.

    3. Bully boy tactics are a reflection of the inability of individuals to discuss and compromise.

  62. 62
    RW says:

    My point wasn’t even specifically about Southern politics.

    My apologies for getting you mixed up with the other person passing themselves as you and typing “The South of Huey Long is gone, and the South of Trent Lott is here” and my following up on said comment.

    1. The politics of Louisiana in the Great Depression has changed over the past seventy years.

    The politics of just about everything has changed over the past 70 years, Bob (or is it the other Bob?). The major changes in the south have taken place in the last decade or so, which was my only point. There’s no need to go back 70 years unless one is trying to find a safe haven for an irrelevant point.

    Bully boy tactics are a reflection of the inability of individuals to discuss and compromise.

    Agreed. Maybe we should attempt to lampoon them from the comfort of our personal PC by presuming that they haven’t read any history books?

  63. 63
    Kimmitt says:

    And I won’t forget.

    Sure you will; you did the last time I posted a list. I posted you a new one in the other thread, though.

  64. 64
    Kalblog says:

    Craziness Test

    Last night on the Metro, I saw a pamphlet that had a headline that read, “Bush’s Social Security Privatization: A Foot-in-the-Door for Fascism.” The sad thing is that for a second, I actually thought it was from some fairly mainstream…

  65. 65

    […] I used to mock Dave Neiwert when he called these guys proto-fascists. Hell, I used to link halfthese folks, have them on my blogroll. […]

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  1. […] I used to mock Dave Neiwert when he called these guys proto-fascists. Hell, I used to link halfthese folks, have them on my blogroll. […]

  2. Kalblog says:

    Craziness Test

    Last night on the Metro, I saw a pamphlet that had a headline that read, “Bush’s Social Security Privatization: A Foot-in-the-Door for Fascism.” The sad thing is that for a second, I actually thought it was from some fairly mainstream…

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