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Over the last fifty years, Republicans and the far-right have developed a series of big lies about Democrats. Some are obvious, such as they are far left. It’s to the point that if Democrats ran Atila the Hun or Adolph Hitler, they would-be Marxist, Communist, Reds. This is a leftover not just of the first Red Scare in the 1920s, but the second one, and Joseph McCarthy. It is also a direct consequence of the Cold War, which Republicans always saw as a great opportunity to advance the cause of conservatism. It goes without saying, conservatives in the 1950s were able to reject McCarthy, once they could do it. They told Richard Nixon it was time to go. It was a different movement. It’s been taken over by white supremacists with not one iota of shame. It’s become a death cult.

The place where a lot of this happened was in the radio sphere, as well as the internet. You know the names, Savage, Limbaugh, Red Caller, Breitbart, OANN, Fox News. So here is the latest in a series of big lies. Are Democrats Nazis? Yes, if you ask the QAnon acolytes, and many mainstream Republicans, the answer is yes. The feedback loop between the far-right social media and even members of Congress and the Senate is tight. At the moment There are many posts in this vein in places like 8Kun, 4Chan, and GAB. This is not new, however. This is a strange transformation from the red-baiting of the past to Nazis, which is utter projection. Since they love the ideology of white supremacy and Nazi ideology. They are not precisely the same, but they are very close cousins. And it makes sense once you understand how the right has distorted history and facts.

In some ways, this is a literal use of words, as they understand them. The term National Socialism has the word socialism in the party name. For the right, the word socialism is a red flag, no pun. They focus on the term as if the Nazis were a left-wing movement not understanding that the term was added as a way to disguise their true far-right leanings and attract the same exact working class that currently is in love Trumpism. It was also designed to distract the middle class, in some cases the intellectuals, who trended left in the Weimar Republic, and it was far less successful with them.

Trumpism:

This started well before Donald Trump gained power. In some ways he is the logical end to an ideology that gelled in the early 2000s. The Right, not just the far-right, love white supremacy and theories on race. Partly it helps to justify a caste society where one group will always be on top of the social structure. However, they are trying to distance themselves from the word NAZI. This is hardly remarkable since the right has done this projecting onto others of what they want to do. For those astute to this, we must ask, a second term will see a lot of their plans come into full focus. This is why they are trying hard to project the term on Democrats. It is a big lie. It is central to Trumpism, which relies on the big lie to create a storyline that is nowhere close to reality, but essentially is what the president wants. This is why he commanded his followers to not believe anything they read or heard early in his term.

This is weaponized propaganda, where the only thing that you can believe, is that which comes from the leader. This is classic of a cult of personality. Trumpism also relies on things like QAnon and other conspiracy thinking to spread the message. QAnon is just the most recent tool, and the most radical. It is a rebranded form of Nazism.

When Republicans speak of crime and corruption under Democratic administrations, they are projecting. It is clear that in the last few decades, starting with Richard Nixon, we have seen more scandals under Republicans. Whether it is Watergate, or Iran Contra, or the present administration. The major crisis in a Democratic administration was under Bill Clinton, and it was lying under oath over a blow job.

Was that right? No. However, it did not put millions of Americans at risk, which is what Donald Trump is doing with his failure to lead over COVID-19. Nor was it a direct attack on American Democracy, which Watergate was. Or for that matter lying to Congress over Iran-Contra. Now we have added genocide under international law.

We saw this misdirection after Southern Democrats joined Republicans after the Voting Rights Act became law. Many of these people were White Supremacists, who felt betrayed by their party. Many of them were still openly friendly with the Klu Klux Klan, or other white supremacy organizations.

This is why the far-right said that Senator Robert Byrd was a member of the KKK. In his youth he was. But unlike many of the members at white supremacy sites, the Senator not only grew up but became an ally to minorities. He always protected the coal industry in his home state of West Virginia, but given how much of the state economy relies on coal, politics are local.

Democrats as Far Left

There is an old chestnut that Republicans are now using, again. They are claiming the Democratic Party is far left. We hear this from the president, his allies in the media, and his core following. Why? The Republican Party is a far-right, white nationalist party. They need to portray the other side as radical because they are as radical as you can get.

The Democratic Party is mostly a business-friendly, center-right political party. They care for civil rights matters because that is a large part of the party coalition. They want to extend healthcare to as many people as they can, for business reasons. They are not radical, or far left. Let's be clear about this, not even Bernie Sanders or the Squad are anywhere close to far left. They are at best a center-left group of people who want to bring back the New Deal, which for the record, Conservadems hate with a passion.

This is pure projection on the part of the right. Also, it relies on people who resent both education and expertise. This isn’t new. But it’s grown into a near-pathological level. They would rather die than have an expert tell them to wear a mask, or cut down on their fossil fuel use. This brings me to the President and COVID. We know the president told Bob Woodward that he understood the virus was deadly and airborne. This was at the same time he played it down and told the American people that this was a Democratic hoax, or no worse than bad flu.

He keeps undermining his public health officials and telling us that Joe Biden would do a terrible job when it is he who has. This is exactly how an authoritarian behaves. He is the only one that knows the truth. This is exactly why Trump and the Republicans are accusing Democrats of being Nazis. Why? They are a radical right nationalist party embracing the kind of politics the actual Nazis used to consolidate power.

The party is increasingly what George Orwell described in the novel 1984. It frequently engages in three minutes of hate and sees itself as separate from the country. The leader, Donald Trump, is almost a god. This is the precise definition of a cult.

The Danger of the Big Lie

There are several big lies that the party under Trump is engaging in. The first is projection. The first is Democrats are Nazis. There are two other big lies that set the environment for internal conflict.

The first is that Democrats are enemies of the people. This is not new but has reached a crescendo in recent months. They have joined a few other groups, such as political elites, intellectual elites, and the press. Fake News is well known because it has been internalized by Trump’s base. This is a similar dynamic that led not just to concentration (and later extermination) camps, but also to the Chinese Cultural Revolution under Mao, and the Rwandan genocide. This is the classification of the enemy within in preparation for extermination.

While the movement that Trump leads is a far-right Fascist movement, the mechanisms that lead to mass death are also common with far-left populist movements, such as Mao’s China. We can see what seems like the sudden explosion of violence like we saw in Rwanda during that genocide. Mass communications in the United States have primed a good percentage of Americans for precisely this orgy. They are ready and QAnon is fundamental, as well as Fox News and OANN.

We see the symptoms already. Whether it is the militias coming to the streets armed or taking over legislative houses. We also see it in Oregon where Militias have set illegal checkpoints. They have slowed down both the response and evacuations which started in viral social media messages.

Incidentally, these are the same people who are in denial that the climate emergency is real, or for that matter that COVID is a serious threat. Why? Their cult leaders tell them that these are liberal lies. This is code for elitists who want to control their lives.

This is exactly the thinking that led to the cultural revolution. Liberals and those with education are the enemies of the people. It’s not as if liberals want to kill conservatives, though the right has engaged in this language for decades. What is at the heart of this antipathy? Why the hate? Because it is hate.

The 1965 Voting Rights Act and the Immigration Act of 1965. Both were the symbolic end of white America. The Voting Rights Act was a frontal attack on the Jim Crow caste system, where blacks knew their place, and the KKK enforced it. This is still strong in places like Appalachia, where compromise is a four-letter word, and the KKK is still part of society.

Changing immigration laws allowed people from all over the world to come to the United States. Let's be honest, if you are from Northern Europe, the type of immigrant encouraged by the 1924 Act, the US was no longer that attractive even in 1965. Why? The social welfare state in Northern Europe was (and still is) far more generous than in the United States. Why come to a country without those benefits, including these days healthcare and college.

However, people from around the world who did not have those advantages started to immigrate to the United States. Whether they came as refugees, due to politics or war is immaterial. Slowly, this changed the demographics of the country. Also, and this matters, many of these immigrants were not the poor peasants who could barely read or write in another language, or worse from a white supremacy standpoint, were from first people’s stock. They were doctors and lawyers, who moved to the United States because of circumstances out of their control. In some cases, they came to the United States because they saw a better future than at home. They also tended to vote Democratic, just like those peasants who came as well. Why? They came from countries where progressive politics were far more accepted. They also wanted their children to continue going to college. In other words, they were a different group than the maligned immigrant who is stealing American jobs and is an uneducated peasant.

Then there are also workers who are doing jobs Americans don’t want to do. Whether this is dishwashing, or picking up the crops in the fields. Ergo in the mind of the far-right, Democrats became the lovers of these invaders, who were portrayed as the worst thing to happen to the country. For people who live in depressed areas of the country, the resentment grew. These people were stealing their livelihood and their place in society.

When globalization hit, their jobs, some of them good union paying jobs, left for China and other points. They blamed just Democrats for it. Never mind that it has been Republican Party orthodoxy that free trade is the best thing since sliced bread. The GOP was good at both supporting the policies in DC and shifting responsibility to Democrats. It was a nice trick, while at the same time claiming a business-friendly, the center-right party was full of far-left commies, aka Reds.

This is very dangerous and we may be on the cusp of precisely that race war that the right wants. There is more, the base is getting primed for the coming violence. At this point, it is not just fringe places. Michael Caputo, the CDC spokesperson, has accused the left-wing of preparing for an armed insurrection and CDC officials of sedition. This is more projection, but this is where we are. This is mobilizing the base for the coming war.

Historian by training. Former day to day reporter. Sometimes a geek who enjoys a good miniatures game.

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