[OPE-L:6003] RE: fascism?

From: Chai-on Lee (conlee@chonnam.ac.kr)
Date: Sun Sep 23 2001 - 22:34:28 EDT

Dear Jerry,

The degree of the present economic crisis is not palpable, not because it is mild but because it is so heavy. The so-called liquidity trap reappeared for the first time since the 1929 depression. Still worse, it is now synchronized across the whole golbe (in every continent). The last financial boom was more morbid than the one before 1929. Our eye-sights are too paralyzed to discern such distinctions. We cannot exactly measure the extent of the present crisis but the ruling elites might measure it better with their own fine-tuning instruments they have tested before. They have better and more information about the intrinsic problems of financial structures and blue chip industries.

If the crisis is so severe, they would require a sort of the state intervention which directly contradicts with market principles of their own. Yes, I agree that fascism has arisen historically as a reaction to revolutionary and pre-revolutionary situations. The revolutionary and pre-revolutionary situations are not molded unless the legitimacy of the regime is in question. The legitimacy is now bound to be questioned since the so-called primitive accumulation is going to overrule the market principle (the private property right is going to be infringed). The so-called middle class will rise up in such situations. The present affair is to justify their premitive accumulations that are going to develop from now on. It is to preempt the middle class revolts.

Yes, the US working class at present does not pose much of a threat to the reproduction of capitalism, not because the economy is not in crisis, but because the US democracy is legitimate. As far as the legitimacy is sound enough, the economic crisis alone cannot create a revolutionary situation. Yet if there is a need for the state to intervene into the market to divert the economic crisis, they would have to smash any consequent working-class movements. An assult on the middle class and the working class as well will be processed in the form of the so-called primitive accumulation of capital. Any assault on the possible revolt of the working class and of the middle class would create the legitimacy crisis. Fascism, it is true, is a 'last resort'. It is now required for the state to have a full freedom to intervene more directly into markets. I wonder what else instrument would remain for the US government to resolve the present economic crisis. 

If other instruments are still present which I have never thought of, much more could be said on this topic.

In solidarity, 


-----Original Message-----
From: owner-ope-l@galaxy.csuchico.edu [mailto:owner-ope-
l@galaxy.csuchico.edu]On Behalf Of Gerald_A_Levy
Sent: Monday, September 24, 2001 5:58 AM
To: ope-l@galaxy.csuchico.edu
Subject: [OPE-L:6001] fascism?

Re one issue raised in Chai-on's [6000]:

"Any capitalist state" does not tend to fascism during a
political and economic crisis.  Fascism is a *historically-
specific* social and political movement and should not be
simply identified with a period of repression and the
suppression of bourgeois democracy by the capitalist state.

E.g. fascism has arisen historically as a reaction to revolutionary
and pre-revolutionary situations. By no means could the US
be said to be in a revolutionary or pre-revolutionary period.

Alas, the US working class at present does not pose much of a
threat to the reproduction of capitalism. There is no need, thus, for
the state to smash all working-class and progressive organizations
and institutions.  Indeed, such an assault on the working class would
at present by counter-productive from the a bourgeois perspective
since it would create a social and political crisis that does not exist
now. Fascism, in other words, is a 'last resort' that is not required at
present for the state to implement its policies.

There is, of course, much more that could be said on this topic.

In solidarity, Jerry

> (1) Any capitalist state tends to be a fascist state when the ruling elite
is faced with a serious polkitical and economic crisis. The Banks and
businesses in near-bankrupcy should be saved only with public finance and so
needs a public consent. This is a pure theory but can be applied to the
> (2) How can the democratic US be a fascist state? How can the US economy
survive this situation without becoming the fascist state?

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