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2017, And The Birth Of The American Reich

2017, And The Rebirth Of Collectivism

By Magnus Vågen, all rights reserved

Shakespir edition, 2017

An Introduction

I decided to write this book after the events in Charlottesville, Virginia took place on the 12th August, 2017. The vast amount of media coverage on the event seemed to pin the blame on extremist right-wing political activists, or Nazis, even as far away as my own home country of Norway. Given that the coverage was oozing with the typical “look here, this is the bad guy” narrative, I decided to look a bit further into the event that took place and quickly discovered that the picture wasn’t as black and white, nor as one-sided as the coverage would make you believe. In addition, I found that this event was merely the newest link in a chain of events dating back to the early 2010s. The thing that really drove me to write this however, was the seemingly obvious correlations between these events and the ideological turmoil in Germany through the 1920’s and into the 1930’s. A turmoil which ended in a world war, multiple genocides, two broken continents and the foundation of the cold war, which lasted half a century.

So, let’s begin with the events in Charlottesville. Early in 2017, or more specifically on feb 6th, the mayor of Charlottesville announced that the statue of confederate general Robert E. Lee would be removed following a 3-2 vote on the issue. This promptly sparked outrage from the nationalist and Confederate-pride movements in the local area, and a protest soon followed where several right-wing groups flocked to the statue with torches. What I neglected to mention in the previous sentence was that this protest also took place in early 2017, namely on May the 13th. The protest was peaceful, non-vandalizing, and kept in good taste. The next day, on the 14th, several left-wing oriented groups held a counter protest, surrounding the statue with candles, this was also a peaceful event.

On a later date, August 12th, protests from the right-wing nationalists re-emerged, disgruntled by the lack of communication on the issue by the city council. This time however, the protest was far larger, measuring in hundreds compared to the couple dozen or so in the previous protest. The reason for this is two-pronged, and we’ll explore both later in the book. For now, quick summaries will have to do. 1; Right-wing political activism has become more nationally, and internationally organized. 2; The increased risk of violence following a right-wing protest has driven them to seek aide outside of local movements, drawing on larger, nation wide movements for support. Due to these two factors, more right-wing activists were compelled to meet for the protest in Charlottesville, thereby making it several orders of magnitude larger compared to previously.

Based on all the information I could gather from posts on the right-wing’s social media prior to the demonstration, the protest was meant to be as peaceful as the prior one, if only quite a bit louder. So why did we see the amount of violence that was loosened on the town, in addition to a case of what can only be perceived as politically motivated murder? Well, the right-wing extremist groups are not the only ones who have been organizing on a national and international scale. Just like the previous protest, there was a counter protest planned for this event, though this time it would be held on the same day. Given the streak of especially one left-wing group, Antifa (especially relevant to this literature are their inflammatory counter protests to right-wing groups, as well as their own G-20 summit protest in Hamburg, Germany), and its propensity for violence and vandalization, some right-wing groups involved in the protest made the decision to arm themselves with clubs and other weapons for self-defense. So, on the day the protest took place, where one group was expecting violence, armed with weapons, and another one was seeking it, also armed with clubs and the like, one would be hard pressed not to expect a certain result. Fighting broke out between the two groups, leaving many injured and one dead.

The majority of the violence seemed to happen after the police pushed the right-wing groups out of their pre sanctioned demonstration area of the emancipation park, and into the left-wing controlled streets, at which point the police lost all semblance of control. One could certainly question the intentions of the police administration for making this decision, but that is beyond the scope of this book. Given that Charlottesville is a relatively small town, the whole town center was filled to the brim with fighting, violence and vandalization as hundreds of protesters clashed, which one would think impossible for a modern city in a western, civilized country.

To understand this, let’s move a century back in time and over to another continent; Europe, and see if we can’t find some parallels.

The Palpable Enemy Of The German People

A much less talked about aspect of German history is that the country didn’t stop fighting Russia directly following the Versailles-treaty. Because of German interests in the Baltic states, especially in the areas surrounding the somewhat German ethnic city of Riga, a paramilitary corps of volunteers was formed to officially protect German interests and people from the Russians. Of course, for any state sanctioned and financed operation to work based on volunteer and popular support, a certain amount of propaganda was needed. This, one can argue, was Germany’s first crack at modern, ideological charged propaganda in “peacetime”, and the Weimar republic was seemingly enthusiastic about it.

Following the October revolution in Russia 1917, the growing fear of communism, or as then known as the Bolsheviks, was rising in the halls of power in western Europe. At first glance, communism was a fanatical movement meant to overthrow the powerful and wealthy from the halls of power on behalf of the working class. At second glance, they realized that it was also a movement all too happy to kill any and all political opponents, be they rich or poor. None of these perceptions were received positively by the ruling elites of the western world, be it in France, Great Britain or Germany. Despite world war 1 being in full swing, all nations west of Russia spread propaganda painting the revolutionaries in less than flattering colors. Whether or not the general publications on the subject were correct or not is not wholly relevant to this literature.

After the end of world war 1, on the eve of 1918, the Versailles treaty cut German territory in two: the main body, which is situated mostly where we would imagine Germany being today, and a smaller part of the previous “proto-Germany” of Prussia, where the polish had effectively been handed the western part. This created a German enclave close to the soon-to-be Russian controlled Baltic states (Today’s Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania). To add insult to injury, the German-Austrian alliance had defeated Russia during world war 1 (although Russia had mostly defeated itself), and Germany had been handed the Baltic states as puppet governments from Russia through the treaty of Brest-Litovsk. Given the pre-existing fear for Bolsheviks, the lack of possibilities to quickly respond to Russian threats to the Prussian enclave, and German pride (or in this instance, wounded pride) being on the forefront of everyone’s mind in Germany, the Weimar republic spread fear of communists through all available channels to compel volunteers to join the Freikorps.

Surprisingly – or perhaps not so much – despite one of the clauses of the Versailles treaty being massive German disarmament, the allied control commission was reluctant to have German troops retreat from the Baltic states. The apparent reason for this was to halt the red army’s advance into the Baltics in hope that fully independent states capable of defending themselves would form. Even so, the harsh restrictions on German weapons manufacturing, and allied reluctance to ship weapons or supplies to German soldiers in the Baltics, made this whole situation akin to wanting to have a cake and eat it too for the allies. Germany itself being unwilling to give up the Baltic territory, seeing as it was now de-facto “up for grabs”, started massive fear campaigns against the communist menace in hopes that weapon owning, individual German citizens would take up arms to defend the as-of-now German controlled Baltic territories. Of course, there was also the enticing offer of land ownership, in addition to the compelling goal of killing commies.

The Freikorps was met with a sufficient amount of success to begin with. They successfully defended Latvia from a red advance, and secured many positions in and around Riga as de-facto German owned property. In the late 1919, the Estonians and Latvians filed complaints to the allies, informing them of the German Freikorps actions, including the killing of at least 1000 Baltic civilians. This led the allied control commision to demand a German withdrawal. After an aggressive and swift campaign planned and executed by a paramilitary force of Estonians and Latvians, with the help of allied supplies and warships, they managed to push back the Freikorps to east-Prussia. A which point the German paramilitary force was disbanded. The reason the allied so aggressively pushed back the Germans, despite earlier interests, could have been their desire to secure an allied nation on Russia’s border.The reason for this might have been since they supported the whites in the Russian civil war, and would find it useful to have a safe haven to ship in supplies and amass armies. Though this is only speculation on my end.

Many of the Freikorps felt stabbed in the back by both the Baltic peoples and the allied nations. They also experienced apathy and lack of support from the very promise-maker of land and glory itself; the Weimar republic. This sense of betrayal, from the very authority one should be able to rely upon, is something that will become central in this book later on. For now, suffice it to say that the notion of the German authorities being weak, bending their will to the whims of the allied nations at the cost of its own people was a very real sensation at the time. After the freikorps disbanded, it is certain that a good number of them were ideological, german-centric, nationalistic fanatics. Given this, it’s irresponsible to assume that this highly-elevated fear and hatred towards communism simply ceased to exist over time, nor did the perspective of the German state being weak willed dissipate. The German state had in other words shot itself in the foot, creating the very sentiments en-masse that allowed the Nazi movement to thrive later.

The German Worker, And Communist Sympathies

The communist party of Germany was founded in 1914, at the time called “the spartacus league”, with its largest political notion at the time being anti-war. The spartacus league was, like their Russian cousins, a revolutionary party, meaning they sought to overthrow the government and install their own. After the war, in 1918, a large portion of the members of the spartacus league split off and formed the official communist party of Germany, which was unlike the spartacus league in that they wanted power through diplomatic means. Given that the spartacus league itself was formed from far left-wing members of the popular socialist party whom had voted against the war in 1914, the communist party was met with a popularity boom after the war had ended. The communist party received an additional large increase of support following the aftermath of black tuesday (a severe stock market crash in 1929), which severely hampered the livelihood of the average, German worker.

Given the political and ideological climate in Germany at the time, The party saw fit to establish a paramilitary branch. This formation seemed especially relevant following the murder of the communist party’s leader, Rosa Luxemburg, at the hands of a former freikorps member in 1919. Unofficially founded in the early 1920’s, and officially founded in 1924, the Red Front-Fighters(RFF) was to be the face of the communist party to the everyday-man on the street. Their stated main goal was to protect the worker’s rights, party members and offer security at rallies. In the end the group only ended up fighting the other political parties’ paramilitary forces for dominance on the streets, mainly the brownshirts of the Nazi party. This paramilitary force had, like the other paramilitary forces at the time, not a productive or cooperative relationship to law enforcement. Violence from this group reached its highest in 1929, on workers day, which the republic had seen fit to ban celebration of. The RFF was legally disbanded following this, but remained active until the prosecution of communists. In 1933, which was one of the communist party’s better elections, the nazi party finally got more votes than them, 43,9% vs 12,32%, which gave them the political clout to prosecute the communists, which they proceeded to do, violently.

The communist party may have had a “head-start” on the nazis, but they were never able to poll higher than 15%. The reason for this was the party’s strong adherence to Leninist, and later Stalinist communism, which made public perception of the party one of willingness to surrender national sovereignty to a foreign power, which was a downright insult to former military and Freikorps members, of which there were many. One could see this perceived threat to one’s national pride as one of the reasons the nazi party rapidly grew in popularity during the late 1920’s, as well as explain its militaristic leanings. As a matter of fact, I’d say the political climate in Germany following world war 1, and the perceived threat to national sovereignty and pride posed by the communist party in turn necessitated the rise of an ultra-nationalistic, militaristic movement. And yes, my point is that we can draw parallels from what happened in Germany during and shortly after world war 1, and the perceptions, notions and semantics that followed, to the evolving semantics, perceptions and notions in the U.S and E.U today.

The Great Othering

This will be the last chapter focused on the aftermath of world war 1 in Germany, and the lead up to world war 2, but it will be necessary to have this context when we’ll explore today’s situation.

One of the most fascinating features of the human mind is its tribalistic abilities. In perhaps more pedestrian terms; its ability to create allies, and enemies, often based on nothing more than a collective perception in the individual’s social-circles of who’s good, and who’s bad. It should therefore come as no surprise, that when the communist party of Germany declared all those against the perpetuation of workers’ rights to be bad, that the members of said party (and especially its paramilitary branch) would turn violent against any member of any group that could conceivably threaten the worker. They did not stop to think on whether the individual they were attacking had ever or would ever him/herself harm the working class, but instead perceived his/her group allegiances to be enough to go on. At the same time, it should not come as a great shock that the nazi party, founded on the restoration of national pride and their hate for communists, would prosecute and murder members of that party when they got the excuse to do so. Neither group was inhibited by any good the individuals they were prosecuting might have done, as their identity was enough.

This is also an unfortunately less talked about aspect of the German political climate at the time, whisked away in favor of more black and white narratives that are easily digestible by the larger population. Charlottesville’s demonstrations pale in comparison to the demonstrations of Altona in 1932, where nazis, communists and police were locked in a threeway that took 18 lives, and leaving countless injured. The Altona incident was different to most previous demonstrations where the two ideologies clashed, not only because of its size (it’s estimated that around 12.000 were involved, 7000 of which were nazis), but because this time the nazis were the aggressors. Perhaps unexpectant to some readers; prior to 1930, the nazi party had never polled higher than 4%, all the while being viciously suppressed by the red front-fighters up until the early 1930’s. By 1932 however, they were finally evenly matched in popularity nation-wide, and in addition the nazis had founded the Brownshirts, their own paramilitary force. Suffice it to say, they were ready to vent some pent up anger. The clash itself was very violent, and was later known as “Altona bloody sunday”, which was later used as an excuse for the Prussian coup (the largest German state at the time) by the Nazis.

Here is the question I’m always left with after reading about these types of events; why would anyone be willing to sacrifice multiple human lives for any cause? The answer I almost always come up with is the reduction of the enemy’s humanity. It would be simpler to kill someone who you do not consider human, would it not? You see, tribalism allows us to value some more than others. Evolutionarily speaking this makes sense, you should want to kill anyone threatening your tribe since your own survival depends on them. In a modern nation however, its utility is long since gone. Still, it is part of our nature, and it is – I would argue – the principal driving force behind the developments we observed in Germany leading up to world war 2. It was in other words not the cause that made the nazis or the commies kill, it was the tribe, the echochamber, the othering of everyone not in the tribe. It was this that allowed the nazis after 1933, and leading up to the end of world war 2, to mercilessly butcher jews, gypsies, disabled etc. To the Aryan tribe, these were perceived as subhuman and a threat. Their tribe had taken their own capacity for compassion away from those groups which they were convinced were a threat to their group, just like it would have thousands of years ago where one tribe was fighting another for a vital hunting ground. Any good the individual jew might have done was irrelevant, because jews were a threat to the Aryan.

Here’s the point I want to make with this; tribalism is collectivism. If you go ahead and view the Aryan race as your tribe, anyone not Aryan is the enemy. If you view the communist party as your tribe, anyone opposed to their views and ideals becomes the enemy. If you view your tribe as those with a burning passion for your country’s culture, anyone seeking to dilute it, be it by supporting immigration or wanting a broader foreign policy, becomes the enemy. If you view the black, women, LGBTQ etc. movements to be your tribe, anyone whom you perceive to be a threat to those people’s rights, is the enemy. Of course, not even a significant minority within any of these groups would be able to kill another, as that ability is reserved for a scant few; people either raised in particularly violent areas, trained to do so, or born with some mental deficiency. That being said, all that’s needed for events to go off the rails, like it did in Charlottesville, is one person looking for an excuse, and that’s why collectivist movements are always dangerous; because they give excuses en-masse. Collectivist movement perpetuates a victim status on its members, and paints the perceived offenders as oppressors. It is logical that this will result in violence, for what use is it to be oppressed if you’re not going to retaliate?

Before moving forward, I should clarify that simply having a political, religious or racial view does not make you a collectivist. If you want to know whether or not you are, you should see how comfortable you are listening to people with radically different viewpoints compared to your own. If you start strongly disliking the person, knowing nothing but their opinion on a subject you disagree with, you’re probably a collectivist. If you get extraordinarily uncomfortable, you’re heading down that route. If you can actually listen while not being emotionally affected, and either agree or compose a sound counter argument, you’re definitely not a collectivist of any sort. What I’m arguing here is not adherence to political or ideological “atheism”, but rather encouraging individuals to listen to disagreeable viewpoints often enough to sympathise with the position, though not necessarily agree.

The Modern Day, And How It Applies

In the last few chapters we’ve gone over historical events and general notions that could lead up to ideological conflict. So, let’s extrapolate what we learned and apply it to the current political landscape;

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p<>{color:#000;}. On the right-wing side of the political spectrum we saw a palpable sense of betrayal, wounded pride, militaristic leanings and the sense of being overlooked by an apathetic state.

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p<>{color:#000;}. On the left we see a desire to avoid international conflict, a sense of being proved right (or being arrogant), the desire to protect the marginalised, and feeling threatened by a growing, radical opposition.

Let’s first draw some parallels to the U.S.A. The U.S has for a long time experienced a declining middle-class, largely situated in the non-coastal states in the middle of the country, and a few southern states like Texas. These areas used to be the industrial heartlands of the States. They are not anymore, as the industrial heartlands of the U.S now resides outside the country. The reason for this is the U.S government’s decision to focus more on international trade deals to strengthen its foreign political clout, like the TPP, rather than trade deals that would strengthen the American industry. For the people who once had a stable economy, and faith that their children would have opportunities in life, the sense of being betrayed and overlooked by one’s own authorities is certainly palpable in these regions. To make the argument that these states have traditionally had a closer relationship to the military is a bit harder, though if you dig into the numbers, the southern states of the U.S seems to be overrepresented in the military structure compared to its population. Lastly, we come to wounded pride, and there is a lot of it. Here’s why; let’s establish that right-wing movements in the U.S, or any other nation for that matter, have traditionally had a lot of their identity and pride wound up in their nation. The U.S used to be the world’s best in just about every category not more than 40 years ago. And yet, year by year they lose one more category to another country. At present, they only top the charts in 2 categories, 3 if you’re being nice; the highest budget of military spending, the highest percentage of an industrialized country’s population that are religious, and national GDP (and that’s not per capita).

Now, what about the left? Well, they’ve certainly gotten used to winning, as they’ve been on a winning streak in the U.S since the 1960’s, especially where domestic policy is concerned. They have long (and in my opinion, rightfully so) been opposed to the now long tradition of warring in the middle-east, and generally oppose the prospect of a trade war with China. Large swaths of the left is very concerned with especially women’s and black rights/societal issues, and smaller sub-sections have other groups they’re concerned with, like LBGTQ, native Americans and others. The result of this gender and racial identitarian politics has been a semblance of anti-white and anti-male sympathies, which is a point of contention with the right-wing tradition, and has been an inflammatory element coming from the left. There is also the parallel that the far left came before the far right, at least in a societally measurable way, which has in turn created the far right (or alt-right, as it’s called now), a group the whole of the left is now very concerned about.

Based on this, I believe we can comfortably draw societal parallels between the German political landscape during the lead up to world war 2, and the current year’s political climate in the U.S. But what about the E.U?

Well, let’s tackle the E.U’s right wing first, though as you’ll see, there are a lot of similarities to the U.S. Unlike the U.S, the E.U has had little time to form a common continental identity. While a person in Tennessee would be glad to read that an infrastructure project in Texas finished, creating an estimated 1.500 jobs, the same can’t be said for a German reading about the same project being finished in Greece. For a lot of the right-wing movements in Europe, surrendering large parts of their national sovereignty to a de-facto non democratically elected parliament is an insult to their identity, which have very much been wound up in the nation state. For some nations, this sense of betrayal comes not necessarily from economic policy, but from immigration policy. This came to a head with the immigration crisis that started in 2012, and reached its pinnacle in 2015-2016, where Germany decided on an open border policy which it couldn’t sustain, forcing large amounts of immigrants to other countries like France, Italy, Spain and Sweden. Statistically, immigrants from the regions the immigration crisis originated (the middle east and north Africa) were about 4-6 times more likely to commit crimes, and almost 8 times as likely to commit violent crime. So, for many right-wing movements it certainly felt like the state was purposely importing violent criminals to the detriment of its own citizens, or in other words; a sense of betrayal. Feeling overlooked came as a part of this package. The last trait I distilled from the ideological wars in the Weimar Republic for right-wing activists was militaristic leanings, but I am unable to form an argument that the right in Europe is more militaristic than the left.

Lastly, let’s tackle the European left. Similar to the American left, the European left has been controlling the discourse of political issues since the mid 1970’s. It has also gotten used to being proven right, as over these last 40 years, left-leaning government have been proven to create a higher national GDP. The left does indeed concern itself with immigrant and women’s rights, and it does feel very threatened by the growing nationalistic movements in many of Europe’s nations. When it comes to avoiding international conflict, there is a discrepancy, as the left in Europe seems to be more willing than the left in the U.S to be interventionist. The prime example of this may be the intervention in Libya in 2011, which was largely pushed by liberal governments in France, Italy and Spain, with support from Norway, Belgium and the UK.

Before I move on, I want to add a little informational tidbit about psychology that we originally learned from rats. You see, rats are very similar to humans as far as basic social structure goes, and one of the things we have in common is play fighting. Let’s say we have two rats; rat A and rat B, where rat B is 5% stronger, faster and larger. The first time they play fight, they are establishing dominance; who is stronger? In this case, it’s rat B. Every time after that they know that if they’re going to fight again, it has to be at rat A’s invitation, because he is weaker. Now, here’s the interesting part; if rat B does not allow rat A to win a play fight at least 30% of the time after the first one, rat A will stop inviting. A similar trend can be observed with far right groups; they used to be instigators of often heated debates, some of which they won (most of which they lost), but when the very prospect of a debate itself was dismissed on what they experienced to be flimsical reasons, they eventually stopped inviting. And since they’ve been ideologically outnumbered for such a long time, the powers that be did not see it necessary to invite them to any platform.

The opinions of the far right are now, because of this, so foreign to the uninitiated, that when those ideas are presented to them, their minds can’t come up with suitable and reasonable counter arguments, and so they are convinced to take those very ideas to heart. Of course, this is also a point applicable to the far-left, but talking points born from a reactionary viewpoint always resonates more with a larger amount of people. And so the movement grows. This is the destructive nature of dismissing Ideas we don’t agree with based on nothing than their offensiveness or their affront to our aesthetic tastes. This can be an additional explanation as to why we see larger, more organized right-wing movement now compared to before. In the case that I’m wrong, at least it can serve as a cautionary tale.

The current situation

By this time, the western world was reeling after the worst financial crash since 1928. This crash, and its aftermath went a long way to legitimize underlying feelings for many movements, especially on the right. In the case of the U.S, the bankers had gotten away with massive fraud, underpinning the economic system and royally screwing the working class, and they saw no consequences for it. For the E.U it went to show how un-unified the different nation states were, especially with the deteriorating situation in Greece, Italy and Spain. The right-wing groups in wealthy E.U countries felt as though they had to pay for the southern nation’s inefficient tax system, corrupt policies and lazy lifestyle, and in most senses; they were correct in their observations. Despite this, they were in the ideological minority. When these groups’ opinions reached the ears of the authorities in both the U.S and the E.U, they were quickly dismissed as nationalistic jargon by the mostly liberal elites inhabiting the halls of power. In the U.S’s case, there could also be made the argument that the politicians were bought off by the very banks they levied no consequences against.

Let me be clear; at this point, the worries and observations made by these right-wing movements (though at the time they could be described as a “forgotten demographic” not beholden to any political ideology) were very much relevant and largely correct. The dismissal of these claims based on nothing more than “it’s just nationalistic jargon” is the worst decision the authorities could have made in this situation. These movements that had otherwise been loyal to their country, just like their world war 1 counterparts, now felt left behind, overlooked, betrayed and irrelevant. Also given that the left had a very strong presence in politics, especially when it came to domestic issues, it was only natural that a process of radicalization would happen to many of these right-wing groups in an attempt to regain relevancy.

Let’s fast forward a few years to 2014, which was when we saw a similar, though much larger radicalization of a chunk of the left. Especially in the U.S, where the left had long been concerned with the societal status of African-Americans, there had been smaller subsections of what could only be described as black supremacists. These groups were by-in-large remnants and offshoots of the 60’s movement “black panthers”, but with the shooting of Michael Brown, sentiments of structural anti-black discrimination overran especially the African-American sub-sections of the left. These groups were quickly taken over by “experienced” black panther, or black supremacist sympathizers who were, like the spartacus league, revolutionary. Large riots soon erupted over large swathes of the country, and demonstrations popped up across Europe. These groups were by every definition black supremacists, and anti-white, which only drove the process of fanaticism of the typically white, right-wing groups even further. It was not really before this point in time that many of these right wing movements started seeing themselves as “white” nationalists, adopting traits from their predecessor before world war 2. The reason for this was largely counter culture to the far more dominant BLM (Black Lives Matter) groups.

In 2016, with the election of a U.S president the left-wing considered to be anti-woman, a similar radicalization happened to the groups concerned with women’s rights on the left. This radicalization was so large in fact, that it birthed the largest demonstration in U.S history, with many other large demonstrations happening all over the western world. While the counter culture to this group does not currently come in the form of right-wing movements, as the groups most opposed to the feminists are the MRA and MGTOW, which are unaffiliated with the right as of now. This being said, the likelihood of overlap is large, and scouring the social media of these groups definately show anti-left sympathies.

Where violence is concerned, it did not occur to either the left nor right-wing movements to be a viable tactic to be used during protests up until an interesting phenomenon blew across the western world; “punch a nazi”. There seems to have been scattered events of left-wing activists acting violently towards right-wing activists before 2017, but the event that seemed to trigger widespread discussion, and largely lack of condemnation from the mainstream media, was the sucker punching of Richard Spencer, the poster child of the American “alt-right” movement. Now, let’s be clear; Richard Spencer is very much a white nationalist, as he has admitted to such himself. However, punching a man without provocation, in the middle of a peaceful interview was not well received be the right-wing community, or communities that had previously not been affiliated, which swelled the ranks of several right-wing groups. After that point, widespread talk about security and defending against left-wing activists became central talking points when arranging demonstrations and gatherings. These tendencies within the right-wing communities only became more prevalent with the rise of antifa, a group who would attack reporters not even affiliated with the right-wing community, and who through 2017 built up a violent streak against otherwise peaceful far-right gatherings and protests.

The picture I’m trying to paint here is one where the right is reactionary. Had it not been for the dismissive attitudes of liberal elites in politics, media and legislation, the radicalized right-wing groups we see today would not have formed. Had it not been for the rise of black supremacy on the left, the right would not have adopted white nationalism as a core element. Had the right not actively and violently been persecuted, it would not have evolved into the violent movement we see today. I believe in the future we will see, like the nazis before them, enforced patriarchy as a core element of their ideology, though this is speculation on my part. The reason for this is simple; when a group, no matter how loose, jointly experience resistance of any kind, it naturally bonds closer together with itself. They form a tribe, a collective, where only pre-approved ideas are entertained. These ideas has to be in opposition to the groups that are most critical and ungenerous towards itself, or those which it perceives to be a threat. This is a recipe for radicalization, because it hinders outside influence to sway the opinions of the individuals involved. The reason for this is that whenever they’ve tried to have a conversation about those very ideas in the past, they’ve been dismissed as nothing but bigoted racists, sexists, homophobes, you name it. They have not had their ideas entertained, and so they seek like minded people to do it for them.

Where we’re headed

To say that we, the western world, will once again dissolve into fanatical, ideological warfare is too simple, and potentially incorrect to say. Despite the similarities between now and then, there is one difference that makes this whole situation hard to predict: the radical left does not have widespread grassroot support. The consequences of this might be that the right-wing has a simpler path to power, or that it will simply fizzle itself out before it reaches any semblance of it because of the lack of the ability to have an enemy. In addition, because of the increase of nationalistic sympathies, left-wing groups opposed to the ideology might form as a reactionary group to the ever growing nationalistic ones, making my whole previous point mute. My point is; there are just enough differences to make the future uncertain. Despite this, here are my thoughts;

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p<>{color:#000;}. In the case that the elites that run the western world’s media, politics and legislation continues their dismissal attitudes towards those that feel betrayed, no matter which side they’re on, those groups won’t need an ideological counterpart. This is because the state will take the opposition’s mantle, creating a potent and long lasting enemy. As of now we are seeing an increasing number of especially right-wing groups viewing the government as the enemy, while left wing groups is still trying to use it – the government – as a tool to achieve their goals. A good example of this is the push to make “hate-speech” illegal, as well as the C-16 bill in Canada, which makes misgendering trans, queer or other such people punishable by law.

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p<>{color:#000;}. In the case that left-wing radical groups like Antifa and BLM continues their violent tendencies, we will start to see widespread adoption of those same tendencies in the right-wing movements. This will not have pleasant consequences.

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p<>{color:#000;}. I do believe that because the political landscape is so similar to what it was, that we will continue to see appropriation from multiple political organizations that operated in the lead up to world war 2. This means that the right will become more like the nazis, and the left will become more like the communists. If it goes far enough, we might even see both groups create paramilitary branches, which will result in a pseudo civil-war, if not just massive civil unrest.

Deep down I still believe that there is a situation where everybody just gets along, and we’ll go back to simply disagreeing with each other. The rationalist in me however, believes such a situation to be highly improbable. As groups on both sides become increasingly impervious to arguments from the other, the likelihood of ideological echo chambers, tribalism and collectivism can only increase. I do believe that conflicts across political boundaries will become more heated, and the debate to become more dichotomous. And by god, I hope that that’s where it ends.

I do hope that we as a society can move past petty ideological adherence, and simply and objectively listen to, understand, and sympathise with positions we find disagreeable. There is no way to discredit ideas other than on the open marketplace of ideas, and that means every ideology needs a stall. If you are not allowed to listen to the various positions of a certain ideology because the followers of that ideology are pushed underground, your ideological immune system (so to say) will be weakened for lack of exposure. That is not to mention the intellectual theft placed upon you. If you are not allowed to be exposed to certain ideas because they’re deemed too offensive, are you not being told what you are and are not allowed to think? Fanatics needs to be placed alongside intellectuals, and be proven to be the idiots they are. If they are allowed to simply adhere to the standards of their group, not caring to pander to the wider population, they will remain geniuses, messias, martyrs and saviours. What is an idiot for us, what is a thug for us, what is a violent criminal for us, is a pillar of the community for them. They need to be brought to heel by our, the wider population’s, standards. The end goal would be to have an open discussion, where the standards are agreed upon, and where the groups who are radical today would reform as they can have their ideas taken seriously, sympathised with, and debated. Debate is, in my view, the greatest reformer.

No matter which direction we’ll go, one thing is certain: we’ll come to a point where we’ll have to challenge the ideas and perceptions that are circulating the political landscape right now. At that point we’ll have a choice; to honestly and truthfully extract the reasons and validity that formed those opinions, and learn how to avoid such radicalization in the future. Or we can paint a narrative as black and white as most of us believe our history to be. Unfortunately, the rationalist in me believes in the latter. Still, it is good to know that we’ll have a choice, and maybe some of us will make a different decision?

In the end, I’d like to thank you for reading this book. If you gained something from it, or simply enjoyed it, please leave a review on the page you downloaded it from. Thank you.

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2017, And The Birth Of The American Reich

  • ISBN: 9781370896882
  • Author: Magnus Vågen
  • Published: 2017-09-20 13:35:20
  • Words: 6836
2017, And The Birth Of The American Reich 2017, And The Birth Of The American Reich