Saturday, June 15, 2024

OPINION: Libertarian Fascist

by BRENT REGAN/Common Sense
| December 1, 2023 1:00 AM

In politics, if you are effective you get called a lot of names. The reason is simple, if you are wrong, people simply could point out that you are wrong. However, if you are right, and effective, and you have a persuasive argument, then critics need to devolve to the next lower level of argumentation, name calling. Ad hominem attack: if you can’t fight the argument, attack the man. 

The ongoing success of grassroots conservative Republicans has put progressive Republicans and their Democrat allies in a bit of a lather and the name calling has gone from amusing to pathetic. The traditional tropes of racist, white supremacist and extremist have been leveled with such banal repetition as to have lost all effectiveness. New invectives are needed but these mid-wits lack the required creativity so they fall back on uttering random “bad” words in a pale aping of Orwellian Newspeak resulting in bastardizations such as “Libertarian Fascist.”  Let’s examine this nonsensical epithet.

Generally speaking, I like libertarians. I have many libertarian friends. They make good neighbors because they understand that their rights end where mine begin and that government should be as tiny as possible. A society composed entirely of libertarians would be a nice place to live with people respecting each other and generally getting along despite their differences. 

Unfortunately, having a libertarian only society is not practical because Libertarian ideals depend on personal responsibility with minimal coercion. If you throw one irresponsible person into the mix the resulting chaos is highly disruptive. Solzhenitsyn observed that the line between good and evil runs through the center of every man’s heart so removing evil is impossible. Evil can only be managed, which is what society attempts to do with the law. 

Republicans believe in protecting individual rights. A Republican form of government, guaranteed by our Constitution, is a system of laws that provide for the administration of justice. Laws protect the individual from the menace of the herd by standing between the individual and the “will of the people.” Unfortunately we have been witnessing the rapid decay of law in the face of public opinion and we must work to reconstitute law and order if our society is to survive.

Fascism emerged in the early 20th century and shares many totalitarian characteristics of socialism and communism. Fascist dictator Mussolini and National Socialist dictator Hitler were allies. Some of the key attributes of 20th century fascism include government control or regulation of industry, government control of education, that children belong to the state and not their parents, government control of the media, government censorship of speech, government establishing Ministry of Truth to control information so that it complies with the official position, political crimes selectively prosecuted in criminal courts, political prisoners incarcerated without trial, strict gun control including confiscation of firearms from individuals, demand strict adherence to the official narrative or ideology, elevation of “group rights” above individual rights, and the overarching justification that these actions are required for the “greater good of society.”

Clearly if the Republican Party Platform were to be subjected to a Fascism Test, it would fail absolutely. Republicans believe in the free market, school choice, minimal regulation, are pro family, pro free speech, believe in equal protection under the law, that all political power rests with the individual, that it is an individual’s right to bear arms, that laws should protect the minority from the majority, and that a healthy society is based on the freedom of the individual.  If you believe in these things you are likely a Republican and not a fascist. 

Those that try to tie Republican to fascism use sophistry, arguing that Republicans have laws and fascists have laws so they are the same. This completely ignores the diametrically opposed nature of those two groups of laws. The better explanation is that the accusers are students of Saul Alinsky and are exercising one of the Rules for Radicals: Accuse your opponent of the crimes you commit. 

So in the 21st century, where has the ideology of fascism settled? We don’t need to look far as there is a party that embraces the policies and features of fascism. Policies and features that include the heavy regulation of industry and production to the point of extinction, government schools with zero accountability and forced attendance, diminishment of parental rights, forced speech by making the incorrect use of preferred pronouns criminal, government control of media, government regulation of social media, “Fact Checkers,” strict gun control and regulation,  promotion of Cancel Culture, promotion of Social Justice for the punishment of those that stray from the official narrative, the unequal application of the law, use of the legal system to prosecute political opponents, strict adherence to the official narrative regardless of how ridiculous and absurd, and the overarching justification that these measures are needed for the collective good and to be “kind” to the “oppressed.”

The reasoned conclusion is both clear and inevitable. The 21st century progressive Democrats, and their allies, have become the vessel of modern fascism. 

When a Democrat calls you a fascist, just smile knowing that they are accusing you of the crimes they commit. 

It’s just common sense.

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Brent Regan is chairman of the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee.