A dozen years ago, the neoconservative gadfly Jonah Goldberg wrote a book titled Liberal Fascism, in which he argued that it was the American left that had the love affair with fascism, rather than the right. Like everything that comes from neoconservatism, his tract was actually a left-wing polemic dressed up as a right-wing critique of the left, but it made a useful point.
That is, the American left has always been rhetorically opposed to fascism, hysterically so at times, but there has always been a great deal of overlap between Progressivism and fascism. The fascists a century ago borrowed from the American left. Over the past century, the American left has returned the favor. As a result, Progressivism has evolved into a strange hybrid form of fascism.
Of course, this does not mean that Progressives will be sporting arm bands and khaki outfits anytime soon. That cartoonish version of fascism that has been a staple of American pop culture for generations is not making a comeback. Even putting aside the absurd characterizations, early-20th-century fascism was a product of the industrial age and has no place in post-industrial, technological societies.
Instead, what we are seeing in America is a highly feminized, mutant form of fascism that is unconcerned with the practical aspects of governance and instead obsesses over the aesthetic and moral aspects or rule….Continue Reading