So Sioux me
Do the Mussolini.
Dance the Mussolini.
Deutsche-Amerikanische Freundschaft, Der Mussolini
God knows I’m good.
As is well known to anyone who tangles with the progressive, Millennial Left, the word ‘fascist’ tends to pop out of their mouths in the manner of one of those 1970s dolls whose string you pulled to activate a word or phrase. So it was on Twitter after Le Pen’s defeat in the French presidential election.
One gentleman named Ian Dunt (@IanDunt), whose name could well be Cockney rhyming slang, was of the opinion that it was an excellent morning on Monday because of the thought of ‘all those fascists crying into their breakfasts’. I asked him why Le Pen supporters were ‘fascists’ and, while he did not reply, another virtual SJW known as ‘Frenchie’ (@Frenchie2585) was kind enough to provide illumination in the darkness;
‘MLP is a fascist, anyone voting for her is voting for a fascist, therefore supporting fascism, hence risking being called fascist themselves.’
I think that what strikes one first is the assured tone, as though the writer were using an Aristotelean syllogism with all the confidence and precision of the seasoned logician. Indeed, I replied;
‘That is one of the most amazing Tweets ever. Algebraically, it reads A=A. A=B. B=C. Therefore A=C. No value is given for A, B or C.’
Orwell famously observed that the word ‘fascism’ had become ‘almost entirely meaningless’, and went on to comment on its usage using the dry humour endemic to his work and very much under-appreciated;
‘I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Ghandi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley’s broadcasts, youth hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else.’
Women. Got to laugh at that one. You got that right, George. But by now we are familiar with the debased coinage of the word, as though a literal coin has been used so often and sat and jingled in so many pockets that all its distinguishing marks have been worn away, leaving just a smooth, featureless disc with no indication of value.
But the Right, even the Alt. Right, are guilty of the same foolishness. Thus, Antifa are the ‘real fascists’, the Left are the ‘real fascists’, Black Lives Matter are the ‘real fascists’. On and on and on goes the dance, the dancers twirling ever more furiously.
The charge of fascism is vague, then, and seems to be a form of ‘Boo-Hooray Theory’, this being the reductive version of the ethico-linguistic emotivism philosophy advanced by A J Ayer and J L Austin which states that all speech acts reduce to a basic approval or disapproval of the object of the utterance.
There doesn’t seem much to be gained by pointing out that actual, historical fascism was a very limited, localised term originating with Mussolini and the fasces, the martial-agricultural emblem which mutated into the swastika. The word has since acquired the novel new power we know all too well, as it is flung around like a madman’s excrement.
Accusations of fascism also have to do with one of the emergent phrases from the last decade of conflict between, for want of better terms, Left and Right; Virtue-signalling.
Those who inhabit the tenements of the Millennial Left, as well as those tenured Leftists in the turreted towers of the Western media, despise the phrase, both because they know it is aimed exclusively at them by their enemies and, I suspect, because they subconsciously know it to be accurate. This type of moral preening is best exemplified by Polly Toynbee’s infamous comment, forged in the white heat of an upper-middle-class literary festival, that Left-wingers – specifically Polly’s friends - are ‘just better people’ than Right-wingers. I am sure she came to that incisive conclusion while at her ease with a bottle of something sensational on the terrazza of her Tuscan villa.
Cognitive psychologists often use the term ‘self-serving bias’. This is the tendency of individuals to attribute positive attributes to themselves and, in order to achieve this, to attribute negative attributes to others. This, of course, is at the heart of virtue-signalling. I am good because you are bad, a dialectic of retroactive self-esteem. When I see virtue-signalling – and it is hard to avoid – I am reminded of a scene I once saw in an English supermarket.
A small child was having one of those all-singing, all-dancing temper tantrums, rolling on the floor and bashing his little balled fists on the ground while he screamed and cried. We’ve all seen it. What was interesting was two or three other small children looking on, standing next to their parents and looking extra-angelic as they glanced up at Mummy or Daddy as if to say; So, do you see how good I am? Now, about that chocolate or toy…
I recognise the desire to be liked myself. It is a suggestion from Freudian analysis that when parents split up and divorce – as mine did when I was 17 – the oldest child – which I am – feels a subliminal level of guilt, as though the marital failure were their fault. For years after, I was aware of an aggravated need to be liked by my classmates. It lasted for a good deal of my adult life, too. Now, I sometimes wonder if I have swung to the other pole, and actively attempt to be disliked. Certainly, I have ten times as many enemies in London as I have friends. But I digress.
The one statement that is guaranteed to produce a dissonant and enraged chorus of ‘fascist!’ is that you wish to see less immigration, particularly from Muslim countries. This is the thread that unites, for example, Donald Trump, Nigel Farage, Geert Wilders and Marine Le Pen. Wishing to protect your country’s sovereignty, integrity, borders and culture is thus equated with a Hitlerian animus.
This has one glaringly obvious conclusion; Most white people in the Western world are fascists. It is common knowledge that the vast majority of people – ie. everyone bar the elites, Millennials and Muslims, backed by the media – wish to see fewer, if any, Islamic imports. Blacks are starting to realise the implications of another victimhood bloc taking their turf and hanging their Nikes off the local telephone wires. And so we are reaching the point at which the word ‘fascist’ will lose not simply its descriptive function, but that loss will be closely followed by that of its pejorative function.
Perhaps fascism is about to become the new virtue. Where do I apply?