Friday, November 11, 2016

 

1998 book predicts “something will crack”



One thing that is very likely to happen is that the gains made in the
past forty years by black and brown Americans, and by homosexuals,
will be wiped out.—
Richard Rorty


In Germany there was a yearning for fascism before fascism was invented.—Chris Hedges



by Larry Geller

This snip from a 1998 book has been retweeted more than 6,000 times at this writing:

[M]embers of labor unions, and unorganized unskilled workers, will
sooner or later realize that their government is not even trying to
prevent wages from sinking or to prevent jobs from being exported.
Around the same time, they will realize that suburban white-collar
workers themselves desperately afraid of being downsized—are not
going to let themselves be taxed 10 provide social benefits for anyone
else.

At that point, something will crack. The nonsuburban electorate will
decide that the system has failed and start looking around for a
strongman to vote for someone willing to assure them that, once he
is elected, the smug bureaucrats, tricky lawyers, overpaid bond
salesmen, and postmodernist professors will no longer be calling the
shots....

One thing that is very likely to happen is that the gains made in the
past forty years by black and brown Americans, and by homosexuals,
will be wiped out. Jocular contempt for women will come back into
fashion.... All the resentment which badly educated Americans feel
about having their manners dictated to them by college graduates will
find an outlet.

[Richard Rorty, Achieving our Country, 1998, available as an ebook from openlibrary.org] [but hurry up, the waiting list is growing…]

Chris Hedges quotes this same passage from Rorty more completely in his Death of the Liberal Class, 2010, p. 35:

Jocular contempt for women will come back into fashion. The words "nigger" and "kike" will once again be heard in the workplace. All the sadism that the academic Left has tried to make unacceptable to its students will come flooding back. All the resentment which badly educated Americans feel about having their manners dictated to them by college graduates will find an outlet.

and then Hedges goes on:

The hatred for radical Islam will transform itself into a hatred for Muslims. The hatred for undocumented workers in states such as Arizona will become a hatred for Mexicans and Central Americans. The hatred for those not defined as American patriots by a largely white mass movement will become a hatred for African Americans.

Where is this possibly headed? Hedges wrote (p. 34), referring to right-wing groups:

But, as I was told by Fritz Stern, a scholar of fascism and a refugee from Nazi Germany, "In Germany there was a yearning for fascism before fascism was invented." This is the yearning that we now see, and it is dangerous.



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