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Level 2 Resources: Fascism

This page contains Level 2 resources that fall under the subject category of Fascism.

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Fascism versus Capitalism

Fascism vs. Capitalism: The Central Ideological Conflict of Our Times

“Fascism” has become a term of general derision and rebuke. It is tossed casually in the direction of anything a critic happens to dislike.

But fascism is a real political and economic concept, not a stick with which to beat opponents arbitrarily. The abuse of this important word undermines its true value as a term referring to a very real phenomenon, and one whose spirit lives on even now.

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What is Fascism?

Fascism is the system of government that cartelizes the private sector, centrally plans the economy to subsidize producers, exalts the police state as the source of order, denies fundamental rights and liberties to individuals, and makes the executive state the unlimited master of society.

This describes mainstream politics in America today. And not just in America. It’s true in Europe, too. It is so much part of the mainstream that it is hardly noticed any more.

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Liberal Fascism

“Fascists,” “Brownshirts,” “jackbooted stormtroopers”—such are the insults typically hurled at conservatives by their liberal opponents. Calling someone a fascist is the fastest way to shut them up, defining their views as beyond the political pale. But who are the real fascists in our midst?

Liberal Fascism offers a startling new perspective on the theories and practices that define fascist politics. Replacing conveniently manufactured myths with surprising and enlightening research, Jonah Goldberg reminds us that the original fascists were really on the left, and that liberals from Woodrow Wilson to FDR to Hillary Clinton have advocated policies and principles remarkably similar to those of Hitler’s National Socialism and Mussolini’s Fascism.

Defying Hitler

Written in 1939 and unpublished until 2000, Sebastian Haffner’s memoir of the rise of Nazism in Germany offers a unique portrait of the lives of ordinary German citizens between the wars. Covering 1907 to 1933, his eyewitness account provides a portrait of a country in constant flux: from the rise of the First Corps, the right-wing voluntary military force set up in 1918 to suppress Communism and precursor to the Nazi storm troopers, to the Hitler Youth movement; from the apocalyptic year of 1923 when inflation crippled the country to Hitlers rise to power. This fascinating personal history elucidates how the average German grappled with a rapidly changing society, while chronicling day-to-day changes in attitudes, beliefs, politics, and prejudices.

The Origins of Totalitarianism

The Origins of Totalitarianism begins with the rise of anti-Semitism in central and western Europe in the 1800s and continues with an examination of European colonial imperialism from 1884 to the outbreak of World War I. Arendt explores the institutions and operations of totalitarian movements, focusing on the two genuine forms of totalitarian government in our time—Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia—which she adroitly recognizes were two sides of the same coin, rather than opposing philosophies of Right and Left. From this vantage point, she discusses the evolution of classes into masses, the role of propaganda in dealing with the nontotalitarian world, the use of terror, and the nature of isolation and loneliness as preconditions for total domination.

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Eichmann in Jerusalem

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Planned Chaos

This new edition of Planned Chaos features a new introduction by Chris Westley of Jacksonville State University. The introduction brings this classic up to date — not that it has ever fallen out of date or ever will.

The title comes from Mises’s description of the reality of central planning and socialism, whether of the national variety (Nazism) or the international variety (communism). Rather than create an orderly society, the attempt to central plan has precisely the opposite effect. By short-circuiting the price mechanism and forcing people into economic lives contrary to their own chosing, central planning destroys the capital base and creates economic randomness that eventually ends in killing prosperity.

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They Thought They Were Free

First published in 1955, They Thought They Were Free is an eloquent and provocative examination of the development of fascism in Germany.  Mayer’s book is a study of ten Germans and their lives from 1933-45, based on interviews he conducted after the war when he lived in Germany.  Mayer had a position as a research professor at the University of Frankfurt and lived in a nearby small Hessian town which he disguised with the name “Kronenberg.”  “These ten men were not men of distinction,” Mayer noted, but they had been members of the Nazi Party; Mayer wanted to discover what had made them Nazis.

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As We Go Marching

John T. Flynn’s classic work from 1944 on how wartime planning brought fascism to America. In some ways, this is the finest and most mature of all his works. It was written in wartime and his points were profoundly cutting. After all, the U.S. was supposedly fighting the total state abroad, but meanwhile at home was drafting people, controlling all prices and wages, rationing all goods, and enforcing a wicked central plan through massive government coercion.

Were we becoming what we were supposedly fighting? Flynn said yes. The war on dictatorship abroad was bringing about dictatorship at home.

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Alternative News Links

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