I really want to understand what is going on inside the minds of American conservative Republicans. I could point to a billion examples of how people who call themselves "libertarians" or "Republicans" (the right wing of the party) are the first to try to legislate morality, legislate how we can spend our money, where we can go, what we can do, and so on. That is, they want to put the government into personal business. I won't even get into how they seem to support corporations over people lately, even though corporations look much more like governments than individual people do.
Libertarians and conservatives are both groups that I once understood to support the notions of "Leave me alone and I'll leave you alone" and "Government out of my business," among other things. They complain about the "nanny state that liberals want to impose," and they fear "socialism," which - if you listen to their cries - they clearly don't understand.
They way they behave sounds less like their chosen political identifiers and much more like fascism. Here's the Wikipedia definition of fascism, which is pretty good:
Fascists advocate the creation of a totalitarian single-party state that seeks the mass mobilization of a nation through indoctrination, physical education, and family policy including eugenics. Fascists seek to purge forces and ideas deemed to be the cause of decadence and degeneration and produce their nation's rebirth based on commitment to the national community based on organic unity where individuals are bound together by suprapersonal connections of ancestry, culture, and "blood." Fascists believe that a nation requires strong leadership, singular collective identity, and the will and ability to commit violence and wage war in order to keep the nation strong. Fascist governments forbid and suppress opposition to the state. Fascists promote violence and war as actions that create national regeneration, spirit and vitality. Fascists exalt militarism as providing positive transformation in society, in providing spiritual renovation, education, instilling of a will to dominate in people's character, and creating national comradeship through military service.
Let's examine this point-by-point. First sentence:
Remember the "Permanent Majority" the Republicans desired and still believe they can attain? Check. Can't get more thorough indoctrination than creating a news empire dedicated to spreading your word, plus using the Church to glorify your views and vilify the enemy. Check. Family policy - goodness, name a Republican in office who believes in a woman's right to choose, who supports same-sex marriage, and who supports alternate family structures. Check. Mouth-frothing fears about decadence and degeneration? Check. Nationalistic fervor with exclusion of peoples from other cultures? Check. Every word in the next sentence - and here I include the war-hawk "liberals" (What's that term again? Can be from either party...), too - fits. Check. Next sentence: "Free Speech Zones," anyone? Check. Next sentence as the previous one: Check. Because I feel uncomfortable and un-American even saying that the last sentence is a check suggests that it's also true of our entire culture. Finally, USA PATRIOT Act, anyone?
Whatever happened to the dream that was the United States of America, home of liberty, land of the free, beacon of potential? Whatever happened to the dream of the USA as a symbol of the good that humans can build, the shape of the perfect society, the "melting pot," where ideas could grow and develop? Hell, whatever happened to our mantle as ethical leader of the world?
Please help me understand what's going on in this country, because I don't want to believe we're becoming a fascist state.
And if we are, what can we do to stop it?