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Monday, November 05, 2007

Naomi Wolf's book "The End of America"

Journalist Naomi Wolf began research on totalitarian regimes of the XXth Century, and distinguished a pattern of Ten Steps that each of them used to gain power. The countries & regimes included Nazi Germany, fascist Italy, Soviet Russia, and various 'banana republics' in South America and elsewhere. The actions of the Bush Administration have brought about conditions both similar and dissimilar to the cited totalrian regimes of the past.

She reports the historical events, present problems, and speaks urgently on the need to prevent Bush from the final act of decalring himself 'unitary executive' {i.e. dictator).

Her book on the matter "The End of America: Letter of Warning To A Young Patriot" was published by Chelsea Green in September, and is already a New York Times bestseller.

The Ten Steps of the Fascist Shift are:

1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy (worldwide terrorism).

2. Create a gulag (such as the Guantanamo prison & Halliburton's U.S. concentration camps).

3. Develop a thug caste (Blackwater, et al).

4. Set up an internal surveillance system (N.S.A. wiretaps without F.I.S.A. warrants since February 2001, for starters).

5. Harass citizens' groups (protesters such as Code Pink, animal rights groups).

6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release (the 'no-fly' list).

7. Target key individuals (scientists, academics, journalists).

8. Control the press (Rupert Murdoch, Clear Channel).

9. Dissent equals treason (Limp Rushbaugh & Tom Tancredo & other idiots all day long, plus the Military Commissions Act of 2006).

10. Suspend the rule of law (a thousand presidential signing statements, elimination of habeas corpus, legalization of posse commitatus).
End of America / Warning To A Young Patriot  "The End of America: Letter of Warning To A Young Patriot" [2007]
by Naomi Wolf

Chelsea Green 8¼x5¼ pb [9/2007] for $11.16
publisher's bookpage

American Freedom Campaign website


Tom Voccola said...

I have been reading GE Nordell since the first issues of his newsletter. And I am ashamed to say did not respond when he asked for ways in which his news letter has helped me be a better citizen. Now that he has created this blog I will be seen on these pages. I hope I will not be alone.
Regarding Naomi Wolf's book, scary stuff, yet the average American will never see it. I write my Congressman and Senators monthly only to get polite form letters back. If you look at the issues they are facing, and there are probably 30 or so, I believe they are also overwhelmed with the number. Like most of our elected officials and law enforcement, they are working on the symptoms and not the root cause. Keep up the great work Gary.

RS Sukle said...

I think that Naomi Wolf needs to read more history, especially labor history of the early Twentieth Century. The Ten Steps of the Fascist Shift as interpeted in her book and applied to the Bush administration, could equally apply to the 1920’s, 1940’s, and 1950’s.
While reasearching the 1920’s for my book “The Ragman’s War” and its upcoming sequal “The Governor’s Cossacks,” I learned many dark secrets about that time hidden in union archives, news articles from that time, and in the memories of old men.
Applying the 10 steps to that time, would have made it the worst decade in US history. Big Steel, Little Steel, and the Railroads controlled all branches of government for several administrations. Dissadents to the serf system of cheap labor to keep the Twenties stock market roaring were branded as anarchists and deported, jailed, or murdered.
The Fascist Shift was probably at its worst in 1928. Conditions in the bituminous coalfields around Pittsburgh got so bad that they prompted a Senate investigation. The ACLU did their own investigation and resulting booklet titled “The Shame of Pennsylvania.”
By 1933, a grassroots effort allowed the plain folk to elect a President sympathetic toward labor and things changed for the better but not without a long and tedious fight. Ten years later the United States faught facism on several fronts—Germany, Italy, and Japan. Too bad they didn’t send more aid to Spain in 1938 to fight facism there other then then that sent by the American Communist Party—ambulances, medical supplies, and the Lincoln Brigade.
My father may have been a radical communist but he taught me to respect the office of the President even if I didn’t like the man. He reminded me that our system of government has checks and balances in place to prevent facism. Another thing he taught me is to listen to all sides of a debate. “Only through the clash of opposing opinions can the truth be known.” He lived through many changes and survived until he was 92.

The Ten Steps of the 1928 Fascist Shift are:

1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy (Communists, Labor Unions).

2. Create a gulag ( Captive Coal Towns,Wobbly Interment Camps).

3. Develop a thug caste (Coal and Iron Police, Pinkerton Men, American Legion).

4. Set up an internal surveillance system (Stool Pidgeons, Pinkerton Men).

5. Harass citizens' groups (Sherriffs, State Troopers, KKK, Jim Crow Laws).

6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release (Union Organizers, Black Lists, Civil Right Activists).

7. Target key individuals (scientists, academics, journalists, artists, writers, social activists, movie producers, labor leaders and organizers).

8. Control the press (Big Steel, Little Steel, Hearst Syndicate).

9. Dissent equals treason (Sedition Laws, Red Scare, Palmer Raids, Anti Union Laws).

10. Suspend the rule of law (Suspention of Constitution rights for coal and steel families, Rossitor Injunctions, Coal Companies & Steel Companies rule the Towns they own, their agents are the law).

pondside said...

Our Real Rulers, the effective controllers of the power levers of our world, are the authors and implementers of your ten listed conditions. Truth tellers will remain as welcome as the little boy who related that "The Emperor Has No Clothes".
Let us all remain youthful.
Mary Eike

Tom Voccola said...

As RS Sukle reminds us, these ten steps are not new to history, but are totally unknown to the masses. What is to be appreciated is that there are ten steps, and they are being followed by a determined, wealthy, and smart right wing minority with a warped sense of what freedom is. It seems that it is only by the grace of God and a few honest citizens that we are able to come back from the brink of disaster time and again. Or have we?