Fascism for dummies (part 2)

Today’s definition of fascism comes from Kevin Passmore and his bookFascism: A Very Short Introduction” published by Oxford University Press. I can’t wait to hear the far left argue this one.

“Fascism is a set of ideologies and practices that seeks to place the nation, defined in exclusive biological, cultural, and/or historical terms, above all other sources of loyalty, and to create a mobilized national community.”

So far, IMHO this is an apt description of the BNP. Keep reading though….

“Fascist nationalism…………..”

Stop right there. The words used by Passmore here are not a portmanteau. Passmore is talking about an extreme branch of nationalism and defining that extremity as “fascist”. In other words, what’s coming is not a description of nationalism; it’s a description of fascism…..

“….is reactionary in that it entails implacable hostility to socialism and feminism, for they are seen as prioritizing class or gender rather than nation.”

Feminism is mentioned a couple of times in this definition. The problem there is that our semantics of the word “feminism” have changed over the course of time. To give an accurate analysis of feminism and the BNP would take a lot of explanation. All we need to say now is that the BNP has no objection to female members, female voters or women’s rights. Indeed, it encourages them, and objects to female circumcision as used by some orthodox Muslims.

This is why fascism is a movement of the extreme right. Fascism is also a movement of the radical right because the defeat of socialism and feminism and the creation of the mobilized nation are held to depend upon the advent to power of a new elite acting in the name of the people, headed by a charismatic leader, and embodied in a mass, militarized party.

There is no “elite” in the BNP and all political leaders can be charismatic. There is no militarisation in the BNP. No uniforms, not salutes, no indoctrination. Nothing.

“Fascists are pushed towards conservatism by common hatred of socialism and feminism, but are prepared to override conservative interests – family, property, religion, the universities, the civil service – where the interests of the nation are considered to require it.”

The BNP manifesto is compromised of values for family, Christian traditions, etc. It is these values that make British nationalism. These are the core values for the BNP and this is what defines nationalism for them. Therefore, there can be no overriding factor.

“Fascist radicalism also derives from a desire to assuage discontent by accepting specific demands of the labour and women’s movements, so long as these demands accord with the national priority.”

This could be a description of any reformist manifesto.

“Fascists seek to ensure the harmonization of workers’ and women’s interests with those of the nation by mobilizing them within special sections of the party and/or within a corporate system. Access to these organizations and to the benefits they confer upon members depends on the individual’s national, political, and/or racial characteristics. All aspects of fascist policy are diffused with ultranationalism.”

Unfortunately the author finishes his definition with the undefined term “ultranationalism”. The BNP do not favour trade unions or workers based upon national characteristics, their manifesto clearly states minorities can stay in Britain but will not receive favorable treatment and should abide by British culture. This is the norm in many countries, yet it is viewed with contempt by some in the UK.

So ends Mister Passmore’s definition, however it should be not that preceding this definition, the author states:

“The British National Party and the French National Front are certainly part of the extreme right but are not fascist.”

So there you have it again. This time it came from a history lecturer at Cardiff University. The book itself is a good read and I recommend it to anyone. Once you’ve read it, you can use it to smack a leftist round the head next time you hear the “BNP are fascists” line.

If you are still not convinced, keep visiting this site. Another analogy will be along shortly…..

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