Is Fascism Rotten Capitalism?

TheMeInTeam

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Calling a fascist a socialist is probably a good way to hurt their feelings.

Therefore I am now conflicted over whether to do it.
if doing so can hurt feelings on both sides of that at the same time it's optimal
 

Gorbles

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Economy-wise, fascism was a proper, and quite aggressive, socialism. Fascists did not set the course to go as far as communists (destroy the state, annihilate currency system), but they went quite far in the left direction. There is a good book on this topic called "The Vampire Economy: Doing Business under Fascism" written by German-Jewish economist Günter Reimann in 1939. He extensively describes steps taken by the fascist government, and my impression is that National-Socialists were staunchly socialist not only in words but in their actions as well. During six pre-war years they heavily centralized industry, banking system, introduced fixed prices on many articles, fixed salaries, fixed currency ratio, heavy capital controls and so on. They did encountered many problems other socialist economies ran into. It is a very good book, and I very much recommended to anyone interested in how fascist or socialist economies worked (works). One can download it for free from here.
I also recommend people Google Reimann himself, and make up their own minds whether or not a fierce opponent of the Nazis and a member of the Communist Party of the time would say "this is like socialism" about said Nazis :)
 

El_Machinae

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Calling a fascist a socialist is probably a good way to hurt their feelings.

Therefore I am now conflicted over whether to do it.

I often tell free marketers that they're really providing good evidence that public education doesn't work well enough
 

Farm Boy

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average man can get a job right out of school w no debt, keep it for decades and support a wife and kids.
Depends on the woman. You might need a specific type of religious one to bring money abundance far enough down the list of priorities.
 

Snorrius

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I also recommend people Google Reimann himself, and make up their own minds whether or not a fierce opponent of the Nazis and a member of the Communist Party of the time would say "this is like socialism" about said Nazis :)
Reimann gives a quite neutral description, considering he is a Communist. Maybe it is because he do not consider them real socialists, though he even notes similarity of some Third Reich's problems to Soviet Union ones. His perspective is different because unlike modern socialist which just say "fascism is capitalism", he certainly acknowledges National-Socialists do look a lot like socialists in action, though he seems to consider them to be reactionary overall. Why, then, asks he they are so socialist-looking like? And answers: well, we all know communism is inevitable, so elements of this glorious future are also inevitable to bubble up everywhere even in regimes we do not consider properly communist.

Now, interesting is that while he clearly was not impressed by real-world results of socialist practices and even notes some similar problems in the USSR, this did not change his left-wing economy affilition. Probably, back then he might have thought socialist economy will find a way around these problems. After all, these are just small obstacles on the road to the Communist Paradise.

Now, one does not need to take Reimann opinions and tryings to accommodate the Nazi's socialist failures with his communist faith. His description of National-Socialists policies is quite enough to make an independent opinion. Reimann seems to struggle sometimes trying to understand why their socialist policies underperform. After all, Nazi did the same which roughly any socialist regime would do back then (Soviets tried to get into Communism fast, still had to bear with capitalists for a decade). But Reimann certainly avoids to talk too much about this, that's why he mostly just gives a description of policies and results (which was good for the book).
 
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Joij21

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I have watched this guy occasionally.


He's a socialist. I don't agree with everything he says but usually presents things well.

Basically he says that as capitalism fails elites will tolerate fascist tendencies eventually leading to outright fascism.

My philosophy is slightly different. If economic conditions detiorate people will drift to extremism in general. Ideally don't let things go that far.

Alternatively people will pick fascism if the alternative is worse eg Baltic States over Stalin's regime.

Of course the worlds not ideal and this neo liberal trickle down is BS.

To an extent it is, but I believe it could also arise within other systems. It's more like a degeneration of all social societies in general.

More specifically caused by a cultural shift to the superficial and away from that which holds greater meaning/purpose. Perhaps a desire to create a more standardized/hyper-perfectionist template in order to have some greater sense of control due to becoming unsettled and uncomfortable by an inevitable end that simply cannot be fought against. Could also manifest from a general rejection of beauty due to a general feeling/assumption that too much would overheat the society and lead to a general lack of control/failing to keep up. The hyper-perfectionist templates are therefore designed to make a mockery of said beauty, and gain a sense of vindictive/sadistic vengeance by using it to manipulate such beauty to it's destruction. Manifestation of the ultimate but most petty kind of jealousy.
 

GenMarshall

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I have watched this guy occasionally.

He's a socialist. I don't agree with everything he says but usually presents things well.
I remember he used to do nice science videos before he gotten political. I ended up unsubscribing from him when he went political a few years ago, when he started making socialist and communist videos bashing capitalism.
 

Snorrius

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Fascism is not in any sense a form of socialism.
Economy-wise, National-Socialism was very much socialist. It is in the name, actually.

Here is an interesting summary from here:

As an economic system, fascism is socialism with a capitalist veneer. The word derives from fasces, the Roman symbol of collectivism and power: a tied bundle of rods with a protruding ax. In its day (the 1920s and 1930s), fascism was seen as the happy medium between boom-and-bust-prone liberal capitalism, with its alleged class conflict, wasteful competition, and profit-oriented egoism, and revolutionary Marxism, with its violent and socially divisive persecution of the bourgeoisie. Fascism substituted the particularity of nationalism and racialism—“blood and soil”—for the internationalism of both classical liberalism and Marxism.
 
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Cutlass

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Economy-wise, National-Socialism was very much socialist. It is in the name, actually.

Here is an interesting summary from here:

So, in other words, fascists who don't want to be associated with genocide claim that fascists aren't really fascists.

Lots and lots of credibility you got going there.
 

Snorrius

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I'm sure you'll tell me North Korea is democratic because it's in the name?
Here is a bit more quotes.

Where socialism sought totalitarian control of a society’s economic processes through direct state operation of the means of production, fascism sought that control indirectly, through domination of nominally private owners. Where socialism nationalized property explicitly, fascism did so implicitly, by requiring owners to use their property in the “national interest”—that is, as the autocratic authority conceived it. (Nevertheless, a few industries were operated by the state.) Where socialism abolished all market relations outright, fascism left the appearance of market relations while planning all economic activities. Where socialism abolished money and prices, fascism controlled the monetary system and set all prices and wages politically. In doing all this, fascism denatured the marketplace. Entrepreneurship was abolished. State ministries, rather than consumers, determined what was produced and under what conditions.

Under fascism, the state, through official cartels, controlled all aspects of manufacturing, commerce, finance, and agriculture. Planning boards set product lines, production levels, prices, wages, working conditions, and the size of firms. Licensing was ubiquitous; no economic activity could be undertaken without government permission. Levels of consumption were dictated by the state, and “excess” incomes had to be surrendered as taxes or “loans.”

Fascism embodied corporatism, in which political representation was based on trade and industry rather than on geography. In this, fascism revealed its roots in syndicalism, a form of socialism originating on the left.

Sure, one might argue whether it is a proper "socialism" or not. In my opinion, extensive state-planning, fixed wages, abolishment of entrepreneurship et cetera does look very similar to many socialist projects. You are entitled to disagree of course.
 
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Hygro

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I will take my entitlement and disagree, yes.

They share a clear reassertion of the political over the economic, rather than the economic takeover of the political over the rest of the economic… the sort of sandwich of capitalism.

They are in that comparison and on those terms both command economies. But one is a quasi capitalist command economy and the other isn’t… except in practice, as in practice nothing is so simple as these broad comparisons.

If we are defining systems purely by how command economy is their economy, guildism is fascism is socialism is liberal nations’ wartime economies and suddenly its like we’ve managed to abstract away the meaning of the differences.
 

Zardnaar

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They put socialist in the name to appeal to others not any efforts to believe in it.

They're socialist in terms of right wing smears on actual socialists (socialists=Nazis).

The other part is state autarky (North Korea or Nazi Germany) is opposed to neoliberialism. Nazi variant was still pro private ownership (vs Communism seizing stuff). State intervention was to support war economy or leading up to the war.

Hard core capitalists also hated FDRs intervention in economy.
 

Lexicus

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I also recommend people Google Reimann himself, and make up their own minds whether or not a fierce opponent of the Nazis and a member of the Communist Party of the time would say "this is like socialism" about said Nazis :)

Some useful context here is that this book was written by a member of the German Communist Party in 1939; this was not long after what is called the Third Period which, as the link notes, was characterized by a great deal of hostility toward social democrats and other more moderate elements of the left. At this time comparisons between fascism and social democracy were generally in vogue among revolutionary Communists, with social democracy being seen as a kind of diversion that effectively propped up capitalism by sucking people and energy away from revolutionary movements.

I am not specifically familiar with Reimann's life and work, so I cannot say for certain whether this is a good explanation, but I suspect it has something to do with it.
 

Zardnaar

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Some useful context here is that this book was written by a member of the German Communist Party in 1939; this was not long after what is called the Third Period which, as the link notes, was characterized by a great deal of hostility toward social democrats and other more moderate elements of the left. At this time comparisons between fascism and social democracy were generally in vogue among revolutionary Communists, with social democracy being seen as a kind of diversion that effectively propped up capitalism by sucking people and energy away from revolutionary movements.

I am not specifically familiar with Reimann's life and work, so I cannot say for certain whether this is a good explanation, but I suspect it has something to do with it.

Well the left is a big tent from communists, socialists, social democrats, liberals/progressives, fellow traveler's, disillusionment rightists etc.

Not sure who's right or wrong but FDR and Scandinavia seem to do more than most.

Nothing's perfect.
 

Snorrius

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If we are defining systems purely by how command economy is their economy, guildism is fascism is socialism is liberal nations’ wartime economies and suddenly its like we’ve managed to abstract away the meaning of the differences.
What we should remember is that socialism is not on equal footing with fascism and communism. Socialism was viewed by both as a mean to an end while fascism and communism presented themselves as much more encompassing systems seeking to find an ideal state-of-things, an atheistical alternative to Christian Paradise, while no such claims usually are made for socialism(s). My estimation of what was happening back then is that there was a very strong request in societies for socialism to alleviate the problems of capitalist practices of the day. On this bandwagon jumped visionaries of different "paradise" world view such as fascists and communists. In theory, communists do not need to be socialists and some even tried not to be — like Soviets who pursued the policy of "war communism" at first. They had to retract back to capitalism and then to socialism when the "war communism" did not work out.

So, if we compare fascism and communism, sure, they are different. But they both were — had to be — socialists. We might and will find differences in how different nations and regimes tried to approach socialism in real-life settings depending on the end goal envisioned and actual problems to solve. That's normal. Actually, USA had an interesting variety of its own kind of socialism — techocracy, which is based on works of Thorstein Veblen. It never took off but it is an interesting school of thought to study about.
 
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