Wednesday, November 25, 2009


SZ's view that that "moderate" and "centrists" are not synonyms, even though they are used that way in the traditional media, is something I have found a hard time wrapping my head around. There is, for me, cognitive dissonance in the phrase "radical centrist," which makes the argument difficult to understand.

This is, of course why this brand is used. How can "centrist" be a radical position? It also feeds directly into the media's love for the "center" and for "balance."

But what are we talking about here? We are talking about a public/private partnership between large oligopolies and the Federal government. The goal of the is partnership is to hold down wages, set prices at monopoly levels, and increase the share of productivity growth going to capital holders and senior management.

They have largely succeeded in the endeavor:

But in recent years, the productivity gains have continued while the pay increases have not kept up. Worker productivity rose 16.6 percent from 2000 to 2005, while total compensation for the median worker rose 7.2 percent, according to Labor Department statistics analyzed by the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal research group. Benefits accounted for most of the increase.

This is a profoundly unbalanced policy regime, one that could indeed be fairly described as "radical."

In fact, what we call a public/private partnership to create monopolies that operate at the expense of workers and consumers is "fascism." Since this word is normally associated with the Nazis, it is a label seldom used.

Of course, the Nazis also engaged in foreign aggression and made scapegoats of a religious minority group as a populist distraction, using media sources like Bertelsmann to distributed propaganda on the part of the government.

So unlike the United States...

Oh wait!

There is still the Holocaust, of course. But "fascist" is a much more accurate word than "centrist" for these radical policy positions.

1 comment:

stuart_zechman said...


Comparisons to fascism must take into account the Third Way's love affair with global capital and labor markets (which stands in natural opposition to fascism's hyper-nationalist policy and popular nationalist mythology), don't you think?

I'm not saying that you're necessarily wrong to highlight similarities with fascism, but that modern Third Way ideology's trans-national fetish might seem...decadent, shall we say, to real fascists.