Mark Twain once said that an ‘expert’ is “someone who shows up from out of town.’ And when it comes to the Fake News media’s obsession with America becoming a Fascist state, another so-called expert seems to keep appearing every week.
This week the expert on Fascism is Frances Fox Piven, who along with her husband, another social work professor, came up with the radical idea that anti-poverty programs would work better if the programs were taken over and managed by the poor.
Now, some forty years after this idea first gained traction in various left-leaning academic circles, because it certainly didn’t change how the government administers its anti-poverty funds, Frances Fox Piven, now being called a ‘battle-tested’ activist, is warning us about the country’s slide towards Fascism, notwithstanding how the 2022 elections worked out.
Now I’m a kind of old-fashioned guy, so I take words to mean what they are supposed to mean. And I always thought the word ‘battle’ had something to do with a real, physical fight – I try to beat you up, or you try to beat me up, or my army tries to beat up your army – things like that.
The only ‘battle’ that Frances Fox Piven has ever fought was whatever battle she could fight with her mouth. And in her latest ‘battle-tested’ appearance, she is so wrong and so far beyond any degree of rational thought or belief, that the idea The Guardian would promote her and promote her ideas is simply beyond the pale.
I lived under a Fascist regime for two years when I lived in Spain from 1969 to 1971. The government was in the hands of Francisco Franco, who openly declared himself and his Falange movement to be an exercise in Fascist governing, no ifs, ands or buts.
Believe it or not, Franco’s government claimed it was operating under a Constitution promulgated by the 2nd Republic in 1935. This governing charter happened to be the most liberal European Constitution ever to exist, either then or now. It gave women equal rights in every respect; it disenfranchised the Church, and it prohibited capital punishment for any and all crimes.
This document was still on the books when I lived in Spain, but the Franco government simply disregarded it, particularly when it came to dealing with any behavior that threatened the legal and social postures of the regime. The government not only considered verbal challenges to its authority as tantamount to the same degree of threat as a physical challenge, such as a political demonstration or a strike, but the government also could arbitrarily move any criminal case from civilian to military courts. And the military court could and did mete out capital punishment against civilians accused of political crimes.
Now if Frances Fox Piven or The Guardian, or any other liberal noisemaker or noisemaking operation would like us to believe that what was going on and is still going in the alt-right sinews of the GOP, as Grandpa would say, ‘chub en drerd’ (read: stick it up your you-know-what.)
Leaving aside the nuances of how a Fascist government rules its roost, let’s just spend a minute thinking about how Fascism comes into effect in the first place. In every single instance where a Fascist government has come into power, this event has occurred thanks to the application and use of massive, organized, armed force.
Mussolini marched on Rome in 1922 with some 25,000-armed men dressed in black shirts. Hitler had more than 200,000 uniformed and armed followers in the SA. The bastards who assassinated Salvador Allende and installed a Fascist government in 1973 represented organized elements within the country’s military, with some help from the CIA.
What armed force does MAGA represent? Those dumb putzes who rioted outside and inside the Capitol on January 6th and are now all hoping that Trump will pardon them after he becomes President again in 2024?
If Frances Fox Piven wants to continue shooting her mouth off, that’s fine with me. But the idea that a media outlet like The Guardian should promote such crap without making the slightest attempt to subject her views to even the barest degree of evidence-based facts, just shows how maudlin and banal the Fake News (read: liberal media) has become.
Liberalism can and should do better than that.