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America's fast track to fascism is not a surprise to me anymore, but I am still at a loss as to exactly what to do about it. Our democracy is nearly lost and my best bet is to focus on becoming a doctor? I don't know. I worry, you see. I worry that it will all go to hell in a handbasket before I am ready. But how to get ready? I don't know. How to do what is right and avoid being imprisoned? The fear of government reprisals already limits my freedom.

**It is a mistake to think that early in a fascist shift you see the profile of barbed wire against the sky. In the early days, things look normal on the surface; peasants were celebrating harvest festivals in Calabria in 1922; people were shopping and going to the movies in Berlin in 1931. Early on, as WH Auden put it, the horror is always elsewhere - while someone is being tortured, children are skating, ships are sailing: "dogs go on with their doggy life ... How everything turns away/ Quite leisurely from the disaster."**


the full text is at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0,,329789179-110878,00.html
Fascist America, in 10 easy steps
From Hitler to Pinochet and beyond, history shows there are certain steps that any would-be dictator must take to destroy constitutional freedoms. Naomi Wolf argues that George Bush and his administration seem to be taking them all by comparing the actions of the US government in comparison to the Nazis, Pinochet, China and many others.

1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy
2. Create a gulag
3. Develop a thug caste
4. Set up an internal surveillance system
5. Harass citizens' groups
6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release
7. Target key individuals
8. Control the press
9. Dissent equals treason
10. Suspend the rule of law

from The End of America: A Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot, to be published by Chelsea Green in September. Dated 4/24/07 in the Guardian.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
hausfrauatu
Nov. 21st, 2007 02:26 pm (UTC)
Jeeze...I had finally forgotten about that and had begun sleeping at night again.

I am a student of History. My husband and I have seen the writing on the wall since the 2000 Elections. We thought about Canada, seriously. I mean, we are close enough. We say "Eh?", I like Hockey. Then I realized that it would be like being a Jew in the Netherlands. It wouldn't be far enough.

I have kids. I now realize that nowhere is 100% safe. I live in a small town and you get a feel as to who your local Brownshirts and informants would be. A lot of people cannot tell the difference between patriotism and fascism. Those are GW Bushes 30-odd percent. They blindly follow authority of any kind. They are sad, sad little people. But they scare me.

I think more people are looking around going "Holy Shit!" But I will say that by the time the arbitrary detentions start, it's probably too late. However, we have a civilian police force. In many other countries it is a part of the military or under Federal Control. If someone from 'the top' says, "Arrest all of the Presbyterians," our police can ask where the law is that lets them do that. Plus I think most of them realize that they will eventually will be held accountable for their actions.

I am so deeply disappointed in the congressional democrats. That free ride for the telephone companies takes away accountability for being collaborators against our sort of free society. It's sickening.
liveonearth
Nov. 21st, 2007 06:04 pm (UTC)
Yes, the democrats are not stopping the neocons from their takeover. The only politician who gives me hope is Ron Paul, because he would completely cut off government funding of corporations, which is the essence of fascism. There is time to save our country if we elect him. But it would take reclaiming our elections, which we have shown little inclination to do. False elections is another hallmark of fascism that Wolf doesn't mention... But the most insidious is the reluctance of regular citizens to "stick their neck out"...everyone wants to stay under the radar to avoid being on "the list". Understandably so. For those who are not on the list, life can continue comfortably through many years of crisis. It is only conscience that makes some people step forward.

Arbitrary detentions have already started---of every nationality except our own. Now what?

Sorry to bring it up again. It disturbs my sleep too...
(Deleted comment)
liveonearth
Nov. 23rd, 2007 05:51 am (UTC)
I am afraid too. Deep down. I think of CG Jung dreaming of rivers of blood prior to WWI, and think, another great change is coming. It is going to hurt bad. Many people will die. Perhaps the Mayans are right that the mass exodus of souls will send a wave through the universe that will change those who remain. In the end, there is little we can do about great changes such as this. Live and love and speak out when you can...and realize that it is not your job alone to fix it. It will take many more people than are currently engaged. So we work little by little to bring people to awareness. And try not to go mad with despair in the meantime......

I am grateful to have lived this life during the peak of oil, if only selfishly--because I know that those who come after will live much harder lives.
(Deleted comment)
liveonearth
Nov. 23rd, 2007 05:32 am (UTC)
I think part of the reason Americans have a hard time admitting that our government is increasingly fascist is because the Nazis have been so vilified in our pop media. If they are so evil and also fascist, then it is impossible that we (god bless us) could have anything in common with them. But it is a slipperly slope down which democracies tend to slide...
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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