Which Way Out of Neoliberalism: Fascism or Socialism?

A new generation of black misleadership, Symone Sanders and Jay-Z, seeks to take the place of Oprah and Bill Cosby. These are the pawns the fascist plutocracy has long used to maintain oppression.

They turn one race against another, as they turn the middle class against the poor, which means the entire population is not just divided but splintered. There can be no populist revolt for justice and fairness if there is no shared sense of being a public, a single people.

The attack on poor blacks has always been key to this strategy. And that has required the telling of lies so often that they are taken as truth. But let’s be clear. The attack on poor whites has been equally important. The purpose is to keep the masses from realizing they have shared interests and shared enemies.

The Myth of Weak and Broken Black Families
Black Families: “Broken” and “Weak”
Structural Racism and Personal Responsibility
Working Hard, But For What?
Whose Work Counts? Who Gets Counted?
Racism Without Racists: Victimization & Silence

5 thoughts on “Which Way Out of Neoliberalism: Fascism or Socialism?

  1. The Obama quote reminds me of how revolutionary the hope message was at the time. Here’s to Bernie for picking it up and giving some policy weight to the sentiment. That sounds really dry but from what I’ve seen, the message is one of self-determination and fighting for democracy when that fight was declared over and done after so many years of middling slides to the right.

    • I agree. The message was powerful. Now there just needs to be put some real force behind it. In some ways, I think the same was true for Trump. He got his campaign rhetoric from Bannon, the latter who got it from studying about the Populist and Progessive eras.

      Powerful rhetoric remains powerful even when it is used as bullshit by those who don’t really mean it or don’t follow through on it. Still, simply getting the rhetoric out there is a step forward. That is where we are right now. Politicians are being forced to speak this way and it resonates with the public.

      Trump made a campaign promise that we should rebuild the US infrastructure, an old Progressive idea popularized during the New Deal. He touched on a nerve in the public mind. Combined with Clinton being a crappy candidate, he managed to eke out a victory even as he never spoke in a way to convince most Americans.

      Now it’s time to go the next step. It will take the courage of politicians to act on it.

  2. This is all very interesting, but I’d say imperialism and capitalism combined “left workers competing against each other in a great race to the bottom” before Europeans even began arriving on American shores. (Industrialization also played a part, of course.)

    Only US citizens would think of this strictly in terms of “black” and “white” and that, indeed, by design.

    The attack on poor whites has been equally important.

    Hear, hear. Let’s not forget, though, that “the attack on poor whites” is also being used to stoke a sense of “white victimhood” alongside every other kind of victimhood imaginable among the public.

    Honestly, I’m still wondering what the hell “whites” and “whiteness” are supposed to mean. An incessant and grossly superficial focus on skin color rather than a celebration of the eclectic mixture of ethnicities and cultural heritages that actually comprise the primordial soup — not only of America but of revolution and transformation — is among the biggest blinders out there.

    Who, exactly, are these “poor whites?” I’ll tell you who they are: primarily the descendants of Irish, Scottish and a smattering of other already economically poor emigres to the US — some arriving even before the US was founded as a nation — most of whose descendants somehow have been convinced they are “white” despite the fact that their family trees almost invariably include Native Americans, African Americans, French Americans, German Americans and pretty much every other ethnicity strangely listed as nationality on bureaucratic forms. (“Scotch-Irish American” not-so-mysteriously is not among the nationalities listed, by the way.)

    I suppose it’s not hard to convince us “poor whites” that we’re “white” considering our skin color. When it comes to white skin…well, it doesn’t come much whiter than mine, for example. So white, in fact, an entire village easily could be blinded by it if I just stood out in the sun long enough. (Actually, it’s sort of polka-dotted with a smattering of brown pigmentation called “freckles,” but there we are.) Further, I imagine it’s just as easy to convince us “poor whites” we’re “poor,” considering the exceptionally narrow definition of the term in public discourse as “low income.”

    You know what they say: “Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.” So, how do we break the stranglehold of the steamroller “flattening persons into identities” on the public imagination if we don’t know our own family and cultural histories?

    Perhaps a good starting point for a conversation on the subject.

    The Divide Between Blacks and the Irish. (Noel Ignatiev is the author of How the Irish Became White.)
    Working Toward Whiteness: How America’s Immigrants Became White: The Strange Journey from Ellis Island to the Suburbs

    • I’ve written so much about this that it does feel tiresome at this point. There were many years earlier in my blog where I wrote tremendously on this topic. And as always it involved immense amounts of research and reading. I’m familiar with Ignatiev and Roediger. I’ve probably quoted from both of them in various previous posts.

      I’ve long been perplexed by the obsession with race. But because it is the framework for so much in American society, it’s almost impossible to not speak of it. Race becomes symbolic of so much else, including class. Even class ends up being symbolic of other things as well. Wealth is really just another way of speaking of power and resources along with the violence that enforces it.

      As for myself, I’m more German-American than anything else. It’s the single largest ethnic group in the US. But because of WWII German-Americans are nearly invisible in the US. Even back in the colonial era, German-Americans were the majority of Pennsylvania. Benjamin Franklin complained about them because they refused to assimilate. He referred to them as short and swarthy, as they were largely Palatine Germans from the border region.

      The Scotch-Irish are the more famous border people, of course. Border people, another topic I’ve written about, aren’t really a singular people. The Scotch-Irish were a mix of populations, including French Hutterites, long before they came to America. Borders are where people used to go to escape oppression and so they became the first melting pots. That is true going back to the ancient world. The original Jews were probably the diverse refugees who escaped out in the desert after the collapse of the Bronze Age.

      Ethnic nationalities in general are a modern invention. I have some interesting posts about that as well. Social identities have long fascinated me. It’s because I moved around as a kid, between the North and South.

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