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Monday, February 23, 2009

Robert Scheer: This is Fascism

Robert Scheer, the eminent left-liberal journalist, professor of communications at the University of Southern California, and supporter of Barack Obama's presidential campaign, made a surprising comparison last Friday on the NPR show "Left, Right, and Center." Tony Blankley, who represents the "right" on the show, responded with a question that many should be answering these days.

Robert Scheer: I don't think the idea of nationalizing, as it's now being called--which means bailing out these banks, setting them straight, then letting them go private again, which is the model that everybody is using, and the people who get screwed are the people whose retirement funds had common or preferred shares and they get wiped out, and these bankers come out richer than ever at the other end--that's not a leftist idea and it's not socialism. This is what we used to, in Comparative Economic Systems, call fascism. It's putting government at the service of the big financial interests. That's what happened in Italy, that's what happened in Germany, that's what happened in Japan. . . .

Tony Blankley: What I don't understand is how my colleagues on this show, who I believe were for Obama, are now saying he's leading a fascist regime. Did he mislead them a few weeks ago when he was still running? . . .

Robert Scheer: To answer your question, I am disappointed in Barack Obama and I'm not quite sure what he's doing.


Blogger Mark H. said...

Two things:

1) Cutting and pasting a story from elsewhere might open us up to copyright issues. I am not sure, but since this isn't imbedded in material by one of us, but it simply posted here, there might be an issue. It isn't posted in its entirety, so it might be okay, but I am not sure.

2) This would be a fantastic opportunity to _comment_ and _analyze_ the issue. My recommendation would be to link to this story and then use the blog here to comment on it. Is the bailout analogous to European fascism of the 1920s-1940s? What do our professional, activist historians think? How well does the analogy hold up?

7:44 AM  

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