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IPFS News Link • Philosophy: Fascism

The Machinery of Fascism Revisited

• https://www.activistpost.com, By Jeffrey A. Tucker

If we go back a decade before the war, you find a completely different situation. Read any writings from polite society from 1932 to 1940 or so, and you find a consensus that freedom and democracy, along with Enlightenment-style liberalism of the 18th century, were completely doomed. They should be replaced by some version of what was called the planned society, of which fascism was one option.

A book by that name appeared in 1937 as published by the prestigious Prentice-Hall, and it included contributions by top academics and high-profile influencers. It was highly praised by all respectable outlets at the time.

Everyone in the book was explaining how the future would be constructed by the finest minds who would manage whole economies and societies, the best and the brightest with full power. All housing should be provided by government, for example, and food too, but with the cooperation of private corporations. That seems to be the consensus in the book. Fascism was treated as a legitimate path. Even the word totalitarianism was invoked without opprobrium but rather with respect.

The book has been memory-holed of course.

You will notice that the section on economics includes contributions by Benito Mussolini and Joseph Stalin. Yes, their ideas and political rule were part of the prevailing conversation. It is in this essay, likely ghostwritten by Professor Giovanni Gentile, Minister of Public Education, in which Mussolini offered this concise statement: "Fascism is more appropriately called corporatism, for it is the perfect merge of State and corporate power."

All of this became rather embarrassing after the war so it was largely forgotten. But the affection on the part of many sectors of the US ruling class had for fascism was still in place. It merely took on new names.


Anarchapulco June 2024