Tag Archives: Robert O. Paxton

The Cruel Face of the Fascist Tea Party

Monday Morning we all awoke to the horrifying news footage from the final debate for Kentucky’s U.S. Senator between Democratic candidate Jack Conway and Republican Rand Paul. Moveon.org member Lauren Valle’s head and shoulders were shown to be repeatedly stomped on by Tea Party organizer Tim Profitt.

Lauren Valle's head and shoulders repeatedly stomped on by Tea Party organizer Tim Profitt

Not only were these images extraordinarily disturbing, but perhaps even more shocking, when looking back at the footage on YouTube, the film has been dramatically edited by Fox News to eliminate the part where Profitt was stomping on her head. What you are seeing on YouTube is a very toned-down version of the footage that aired early Monday morning.

Whether or not one believes that the Tea Party arm of the Republican Party was developed in conservative fiscal policy, by casting a vote for a Republican and or a Repbulican Tea Party candidate one is fully embracing a fascist agenda on social policy, including utter intolerance of gays, control over a woman’s right to reproductive freedom, pro-war stance, blind hatred towards Muslims, advocation of torture, and assault on paperless immigrants.

Historian Robert O. Paxton is considered the pre-eminent scholar on how countries become fascist. A link to Paxton’s The Five Stages of Fascism (pdf) is provided. Many believe that the United States of America is in the second stage toward becoming a fascist regime. Paxton states that “Everybody is somebody else’s fascist.” With that in mind the following is Paxton’s essential definition of the word.

“Fascism is a system of political authority and social order intended to reinforce the unity, energy, and purity of communities in which liberal democracy stands accused of producing division and decline.”  And,  “…a form of political behavior marked by obsessive preoccupation with community decline, humiliation or victimhood and by compensatory cults of unity, energy and purity, in which a mass-based party of committed nationalist militants, working in uneasy but effective collaboration with traditional elites, abandons democratic liberties and pursues with redemptive violence and without ethical or legal restraints goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.”