American Fascists & the Global Right ๐Ÿ˜ˆ

It feels like the 1930s all over again — and with good reason. The rise of American fascists and right-wing extremism around the world has been a known trend for decades, and America’s past flirtations with fascism had been largely swept under the rug by the then anti-semites who tried to put a stop to FDR’s New Deal and prevent the U.S. from getting into World War II.

They fought against labor unions and labor organizers, often using private militia as henchmen to do their dirtywork with plausible deniability for themselves. The Ku Klux Klan — the principle paramilitary organization formed during Reconstruction to undo egalitarian gains from the Civil War — was just one of many instruments put to use in service of plutocratic aims to quell any “communist awakening” amongst their workers, lest they get any uppity ideas for themselves. They fell for the popular conspiracy theories of their time, which included Hitler’s bogus assertion that Jewish bankers controlled the world and had to be stopped before they destroyed the white race.

Those fascists, butthurt over America’s overwhelmingly popular decision to enter the war and stop Hitler from exterminating the Jews, seethed with jealousy at the post-war “liberal consensus” that flourished alongside the booming US economy, propelled first by the war effort and later by the peacetime success of the New Deal‘s long shadow and the burgeoning of the American middle class.

The American fascists turned into the John Birch Society, and the McCarthyites, and the Libertarians, and the Moral Majority, and the Gingrich Revolution, and the Tea Party, and the MAGA / QAnon stew sloshing around mass media. The kooks on the far right — the kind of ilk so cray cray that even William F. Buckley excommunicates you from the Republican Party — have taken over the hen house now. Outrage sells, as Facebook well knows — and as two-bit dictators around the world have bribed Mark Zuckerberg to brainwash the masses using the most inanely illogical propaganda prolefeed, the world tilts dangerously towards authoritarianism and the end of our democracy as we know it. And with it, all hope for truth and light into the future for some time to come — the equivalent of a political meteor hitting the Earth.

The American fascists are still around, and now they have tools of propaganda that Goebbels could never have even wet dreamed of. They’re more powerful and more well-connected — to other sociopaths, malignant narcissists, and other pathological cult-leader types who might be of transactional service to each other from time to time. We’d be wise to keep an eye on these folks.

NameTypeLocationKnown for
Greg AbbottPoliticianTexasThe 48th governor of Texas since 2015 who has presided over multiple energy grid disasters, a self-induced economic fiasco at the border, and ghoulish vigilante legislation designed to terrorize women seeking abortion services, and a perversion of the child sex trafficking apparatus to instead target and tyrannize trans youth
Roman AbramovichForeign agentRussian oligarch close to both Putin and Trump
ACU Strategic PartnersForeign agentA company seeking to build nuclear power plants in the Middle East in partnership with a sanctioned Russia company; Mike Flynn was working for them without having disclosed it to the US government as required.
Sheldon AdelsonBusinesspersonLas Vegas, NVCEO billionaire of the Sands Corp casino empire (died, 2021)
AggregateIQCorporationCanadian data firm connected to Cambridge Analytica parent company SCL Group that played a role in spreading Brexit propaganda
Roger AilesMedia personalityPrimogenitor of Fox News whose downfall came over dozens of women testified to his decades of sexual assault and blackmail behaviors
Todd AkinPoliticianMissouriPolitician who lost his Senate race to Clairse McCaskill in 2012 when he made the comment on TV about women having a way to "shut the whole thing down" to avoid becoming pregnant if raped.
Ali AlexanderExtremistOne of the primary organizers of the Stop the Steal rally on January 6 that turned into and/or attempted to mask a coup attempt
Samuel AlitoJudgeWashington, DCSupreme Court Justice who penned a draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade, riddled with Christian nationalist tropes and arbitrary Originalist interpretations
American Energy AllianceNon-profitA tax-exempt nonprofit that advocated for corporate-friendly energy policies. Koch's Freedom Partners donated $1.5 million in 2012.
American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)Non-profitCorporate-funded nonprofit that writes legislation for Republican legislatures, including spearheading the efforts to wrest partisan control over election results in 49 states.
Americans for ProsperityPACThe Koch Brothers' Libertarian political advocacy arm
Philip AnschutzBusinesspersonColoradoCO oil and entertainment billionaire and founder of Qwest Communications
Michael Anton
Lee AtwaterPolitical OperativeInfamously brutal Republican strategist for Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush who promoted the "abstraction" of racism via Southern Strategy and ran the infamous Willie Horton ad against Michael Dukakis in 1988.
Michele BachmanPoliticianMNMinnosota Republican politician who was the first woman in her state to be elected to the House of Representatives, she is known for her extremist Dominionist views
Steve BannonMedia personalityHouseboatsFormer Breitbart provocateur who joined the Trump administration as a key advisor and dark propagandist for Trump intent on sowing chaos
William BarrPublic SectorDonald Trump's Attorney General who shielded him from public awareness of his crimes, corruptions, and compromises during the 45th presidency.
Maurice BarresAuthorFranceFrench nationalist author in the early 20th century who introduced Great Replacement theory
Louis Beam
Andy BiggsPoliticianAZHouse Republican subpoena'd by the January 6 Commission for his role in the attempted coup
Black LegionExtremistMichiganSecret society of black-hooded terrorists working in MI against labor unions and labor organizers in the 1930s. Legionnaires talked of staging a coup to oust FDR and imposing a fascist regime in the United States
David BogatinOligarchNYCA top figure in the Russian mafia who bought 5 luxury condos in Trump Tower to launder money, he admitted in 1987.
Jacob BogatinOligarchDavid Bogatin's brother, and a partner of notorious Russian mob moss Semion Mogilevich
Harry and Lynde BradleyKochtopusMidwesterners who built their wealth on defense contracts
Andrew BreitbartMedia personalityFounded both Brietbart and the Huffington Post
Anders BreivikExtremistOslo, NorwayMass murderer who killed 77 people in Oslo, Norway as inspired by the white supremacist ideology of Great Replacement theory
Mo BrooksPoliticianHuntsville, ALHouse Republican from Alabama subpoena'd by the January 6 Committee for his role in the attempted coup
Brother's CircleCriminalOrganized crime gang pursued by then-FBI head Robert Mueller circa 2011
Michael BrownFerguson, MOUnarmed black man killed by the police in Ferguson, Missouri, sparking a series of riots in the city.
Pat BuchananPoliticianWashington, DCPolitician and paleoconservative who worked for presidents Nixon, Ford, and Reagan before running against incumbent George H.W. Bush in 1992; widely considered a bigot, racist, and antisemite.
William F. Buckley JrMedia personality
Doug BurleyPolitical OperativeFounding and leading both The Family and the National Prayer Breakfast of right-wing power brokers
Cambridge AnalyticaCorporationLondon, UKData firm implicated in the propaganda campaigns of both Brexit in 2015 and Donald Trump in 2016 that stole hundreds of millions of Facebook profiles and mined the treasure trove of information for weaknesses to manipulate in attempts to persuade
Renaud CamusAuthorFranceFrench writer and critic who created the recent 2011 formulation of the Great Replacement Theory
Tucker CarlsonMedia personalityNYCFox News evening opinion anchor and fish stick heir who promotes the Great Replacement conspiracy theory to his primetime audience of older white men.
Doug CaseyBusinesspersonAyn Rand devotee and "anarcho-capitalist" who specializes in how to profit from turmoil
Michael CatanzaroLobbyistPartner at the CGCN Group lobbying firm who headed "energy independence" for the Trump transition team.
Cato InstituteThink Tank
Madison CawthornPoliticianNC
Center to Protect Patient RightsKochtopusDark money group funded by the Kochs to attack the ACA with fearmongering and vitriol
Mike CernovichMedia personality
CGCN GroupLobbyistLobbyist for the Koch brothers
James ChaneyActivistNeshoba County, MSOne of 3 civil rights activists murdered by local white supremacists when engaging in non-violent civil disobedience, along with Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman
Jeremy Joseph ChristianExtremistPortland, ORstabbed 3 people who tried to intervene while he was hurling anti-Muslim slurs at 2 young women in Portland, OR
Chris ChristiePoliticianFormer governor of NJ and former Trump supporter and transition team lead who became a Trump critic
Michael CohenBusinesspersonNYCDonald Trump's personal lawyer, sentenced to 3 years in federal prison for felony crimes, including campaign finance crimes
Steven A. CohenBusinesspersonFinance (SAC Capital Advisors)
Roy CohnPolitical OperativeDeceasedLawyer who represented Senator Joseph McCarthy in the infamous televised 1954 hearings, and later went on to become a mafia-connected fixer in NYC and mentor to budding real estate developer Donald Trump
Competitive Enterprise InstituteThink TankWashington, DCA Washington think tank that had been bankrolled by fossil fuel industries, particularly the Kochs.
Continental ResourcesCorporationOklahomaOK-based shale oil company with a large and profitable fracking operation
Coors brewing familyKoch InvestorColoradoThe Coors gave money to Oliver North to fund the Iran-Contra operation
Council of Conservative Citizens (CoC)
Ted CruzPoliticianTexas
Kim DavisPublic SectorKentuckyFormer county clerk of Rowan County, KY who defied a US federal court order to issue marriage licenses to gay couples in 2015
Devos familyKoch InvestorFounders of the Amway marketing empire; Betsy DuVos was the Secretary of Education under Trump
Amadou DialloNew Yorka West African immigrant mowed down by 41 shots from police when leaving his apartment on February 4, 1999.
James DobsonMedia personalityconservative talk-show host and fundamentalist Christian who strongly advocated spanking and corporal punishment be applied liberally to children
Chester DolesFormer KKK leader who runs the white supremacist American Patriots USA. Nearly beat a Black man to death in 1993. Marched in 2017 in Charlottesville.
Rod DreherExtremistBenedict Option author and traditionalist
Dinesh D'SouzaMedia personalityConservative gadly who alleged that Obama was "African" in outlook rather than American, absorbing his "radical" views from his Kenyan father
Doug DuceyPoliticianAZGovernor of Arizona
Aleksandr DuginExtremistRussiaRussia's primary fascist political philosopher and originator of Eurasianism conspiracy theory
David DukeWhite Supremacist
John EastmanPolitical OperativeRan against Kamala Harris in 2010 for California AG, then showed back up in 2020 to write an outrageous op-ed that Newsweek for some reason actually published, that claimed that she was "secretly" not a US resident and therefore not eligible to be the VP! Now the Kamala Harris birther
Myron EbellPolitical OperativeOutspoken climate change skeptic, who headed the Trump transition team for the EPA
Election Integrity Project CaliforniaExtremistElection fraud group working with Leonard Leo
Larry EllisonBusinesspersonGave $5 million to Marco Rubio
Cassandra Fairbanks
Jerry Falwell, JrTelevangelist
The FamilyLobbyistShadowy DC group with tremendous sway in Congress and around the world, following a distorted "strongman Jesus" version of Christianity.
The Federalist SocietyExtremist
Scott FitzgeraldPoliticianWIHouse Republican
Michael FlynnCult Leader
For AmericaPAC
Fox NewsCorporation
Free Congress Foundation
Freedom CaucusPolitician
Freedom PartnersKochtopusThe Koch Brothers' secretive donor club.
FreedomWorksExtremist
Matt GaetzPolitician
Kevin GentryKochtopusVP of Special Projects and VP of the Koch Foundation
Greg GianfortePoliticianbody-slamming Guardian reported Ben Jacobs while running for a GOP House seat in Montana
Newt GingrichMedia personality
Tim "Baked Alaska" GionetWhite Supremacist
Rudy GiulianiPoliticianNYC
GiveSendGo"Christian" donation platform
Barry GoldwaterPoliticianAZ
Seb GorkaPolitical Operative
Chuck GrassleyPoliticianSenator
The Great Awakening
Marjorie Taylor GreeneQAnonGA
Eric GreitensPoliticianMO
Harold HammKochtopusBillionaire founder of Continental Resources, an OK-based shale company with large fracking business & one of the charter members of the Kochs' donor circle.
Orrin HatchPoliticianSen. Orrin Hatch raised concerns about funding certain entitlement programs. โ€œI have a rough time wanting to spend billions and billions and trillions of dollars to help people who wonโ€™t help themselves, wonโ€™t lift a finger and expect the federal government to do everything,โ€ he said.
Josh HawleyPoliticianMOMissouri Senator funded by Peter Thiel who gave the January 6 mob a fist bump on his way in to object to certifying the electoral count
Matthew HeimbachExtremistWhite nationalist and one of the founders of the Traditionalist Workers Party
Jesse HelmsPolitician
Leona Helmsley
Diane HendricksWIThe wealthiest woman in Wisconsin at $3.6 billion
Heritage FoundationThink TankWashington, DC
Honest Elections ProjectExtremistA conservative legal organization connected to Leonard Leo that files legal briefs to SCOTUS opposing mail-in ballots and other voting reforms that help more people to vote,
Mike HuckabeePolitician
Laura IngrahamMedia personalityFox News host
Andrew JacksonPoliticianDeceasedUS President
John Birch SocietyExtremist
Andrew JohnsonPoliticianDeceasedUS President
Chuck JohnsonMedia personalityAlt-right super troll
Ron JohnsonPoliticianWisconsin Republican Senator who supported Donald Trump, promoted ivermectin for covid, and said he wasn't afraid of the January 6 mob because they were white people
Alex JonesMedia personalityHost of InfoWars, the 9/11 conspiracy show that put the genre on the map
Jim JordanPoliticianOHA long-time Tea Party hyena, the Congressman known as Gym once helped his buddy cover up decades of sexual abuse of young wrestlers in their care.
Judicial Education ProjectExtremistA legal group tied to Leonard Leo, working to advance conservative takeover of the judiciary.
Islam KarimovOligarchUzbekistanFormer Communist official who became the first president of Uzbekistan in 1991, and remained the country's dictator until his death in 2016.
Alex KaschutaMedia personalityRight-wing podcaster
Brett KavanaughJudgeDC
Dr. D. James Kennedycreating a Dominionist "conversion" playbook
John F. KennedyPoliticianDeceased
Robert F. KennedyPoliticianDeceased
Anna Khachiyan
Martin Luther KingActivistDeceasedCivil Rights leader in the 1960s, and enemy of Southern politicians
Charlie KirkMedia personality
Walter KirnAuthorMTUp in the Air author and disaffected former member of the American intellectual class
KKKWhite Supremacist
Bill KochBusinessperson
Charles KochKochtopusKansasindustries: pipelines, oil refineries, lumber and paper, coal, chemicals, commodity futures, etc.
David KochKochtopusDeceasedindustries: pipelines, oil refineries, lumber and paper, coal, chemicals, commodity futures, etc. (now deceased)
Fred KochKochtopusKansasFather of Charles and David, Fred Koch was an early and fervent acolyte in the ultra-conservative John Birch Society
Frederick KochBusinesspersonNew York
David KoreshCult LeaderWaco, TX
Ku Klux Klan (see KKK)White Supremacist
Kylie Jane Kremer
David LaneWhite SupremacistMember of the white supremacist group The Order who coined the 14-word slogan popular with Great Replacement adherents: "We must secure the exisatence of our people and a future for white children"
Ken LangoneBusinesspersonFounder of Home Depot
Lyndon LaRoucheCult Leader
Robert LeFevreKochtopusCharles Koch's mentor, a quasi-anarchist, who said, "government is a disease masquerading as its own cure"
Leonard LeoExtremistChairman of the Federalist Society, a legal organization working to pack the courts with conservative judges.
Marine Le PenPoliticianFrance
Honor Levy
Liberty CounselChristian special rights group
The Liminal Order
William S. LindPolitical Operative
Kelly LoefflerPoliticianGeorgiaInsider trading immediately upon arriving at her unelected Senate seat when her husband, President of the NYSE, found a way to have some money arrive at Brian Kemp, the Governor, who appointed her.
Dana LoeschMedia personalityNRA spokeswoman
Thomas MairAssassin of British MP Jo Cox, who was outspoken against the UK's Brexit campaign
Paul ManafortLobbyist
Blake MastersPoliticianAZ
John McAfeeBusinesspersonDeceased
Joseph McCarthyPoliticianDeceasedSenator best known for his demagoguery against alleged Communist agents in the US government during the Cold War in the early 1950s
Kevin McCarthyPolitician
Michael McKennaKochtopusLobbyist and President of MWR Strategies lobbying firm, who have the Koch brothers as clients
Timothy McVeighExtremistOklahoma City, OKWhite supremacist McVeigh was a disgruntled former military guy who took up with the white power movement and executed the Oklahoma City bombing -- as inspired, he said, by enacting "revenge" for Waco.
Rebekah MercerOligarchDaughter of NY hedge fund manager Robert Mercer; she helped guide the Trump transition team following the 2016 election, and funded right-wing social network Parler
Robert MercerOligarchFather of Rebekah Mercer and longtime right-wing donor
MicroChipPro-Trump bot-king
Stephen MillerExtremist
Michael Milken
Cleta MitchellExtremistOKLawyer who represented various right-wing entities including the NRA, and was considered the "fringe of the fringe" -- at age 70 she "represented" Trump during his telephone call to Brad Raffensperger asking him to find ~11,000 votes
Semion MogilevichCriminalNotorious Russian mob boss
Stefan MolyneuxMedia personalityAlt-right troll
Sun Myung MoonCult LeaderLeader of the Moonie cult and self-proclaimed deity, Mr Moon served time in federal prison for tax fraud, among other charges.
Roy MoorePoliticianALTrump-backed politician and pedophile who narrowly lost the Alabama Senate race to Doug Jones in 2018.
Rupert MurdochOligarchFox News owner famous for his amoral media
Jack Murphy
MWR StrategiesKochtopusLobbying firm for the Koch brothers
Dasha Nekrasova
neo-NazisExtremist
Terry NicholsExtremistBlew up the Oklahoma Federal Building with Timothy McVeigh
Ralph NormanPoliticianHouse Republican who skirted the metal detectors to enter the House floor after the January 6 insurrection
NRAExtremistNational Rifle Association
NYPDPublic SectorNew York Police Department
Barack ObamaPoliticianChicago, DC, Los AngelesThe 44th President of the United States, and the first black person to hold the job. He was widely loathed by the Right despite his positive record.
John M. OlinKochtopusChemical and munitions company titan
Viktor OrbanPoliticianRadical right president of Hungary and Putin supporter
The OrderWhite supremacist group
Candace OwensExtremist
Matt ParrottExtremistCo-founder with Matthew Heimbach of the Traditionalist Workers Party
Laszlo Pasztor
Norman Vincent PealeBusinesspersonChristianity as a business man's religion
Mike PenceMedia personalityDonald Trump's VP
Rick PerryPolitician
Scott PerryPoliticianHouse Republican who skirted the metal detectors to enter the House floor after the January 6 insurrection
Jordan B PetersonAcademic
William Pierce
Jeanine PirroMedia personalityFox News host known for having a bit of a drinking problem and a brash on-air personality
Mike PompeoPublic SectorSec of State after the firing of Rex Tillerson; former CIA Director; former Republican congressman from KS and largest recipient of Koch campaign funds in all of Congress
Jack PosobiecMedia personality
Lewis PowellBusinesspersonWrote a 1971 memo that rallied the largely white and male business community around a plan to dismantle the New Deal and the liberal consensus
Sydney PowellPolitical OperativeAlso Associates with UFO believers and anti-vaxxers
Proud BoysExtremistMilitia group involved in the January 6 coup attempt
Thomas PyleBusinesspersonpresident of the American Energy Alliance, funded by Exxon and the Kochs
QAnonQAnonConspiracy theory about Democratic pedophiles that recycles Nazi ideology
Jean RaspailAuthorFranceFrench author of the 1973 Camp of the Saints novel about migrants organizing to take over France; the racist fiction inspired the white power movement of the 1980s, Steve Bannon, and a host of other fascist movements in Europe, America, and around the world
Nancy ReaganMedia personalityDeceased
Ronald ReaganPoliticianDeceased
Kyle Rittenhouse
Pat RobertsonTelevangelist
Dylann Roof
George Romney
Mitt RomneyPoliticianUT
Murray RothbardExtremist
Dave Rubin
Richard Mellon ScaifeKoch InvestorHeir to the Mellon banking and Gulf Oil fortunes, and Koch donor
David SchnarePolitical Operative"Free-market environmentalist" who accused the EPA of having blood on its hands, who joined climate change denier Myron Ebell on the Trump transition team for the EPA
Stephen SchwarzmanFinance
Rick ScottPolitician
Jeff SessionsPoliticianAL
Marc ShortPolitical OperativeRan the Koch Brothers' secretive donor club, Freedom Partners, before becoming Mike Pence's senior advisor during the 2016 presidential transition
Sinclair Broadcasting GroupCorporation
Paul SingerKoch InvestorFinance (Elliott Management hedge fund). Supported Rudy Giuliani.
SNCCNon-profit
Richard SpencerWhite Supremacist
Balaji SrinivasanBusinessperson
State Policy NetworkKochtopusFunded in part by the Kochs
Roger StoneLobbyist
Richard StrongBusinesspersonStrong Capital Management Mutual Fund
Tea PartyPACIntensely antitax group
Peter ThielBusinesspersonLos Angeles, CAEccentric Silicon Valley billionaire and pocketbook for the New Right project
Clarence ThomasJudgeWashington, DC
Ginni ThomasPolitical OperativeWashington, DC
Three PercentersExtremistMilitia group who had a heavy presence at the January 6 attempted coup
Traditionalist Workers PartyExtremist
Turning Point USAExtremistCharlie Kirk's right-wing PR organization
Unabomber
Unification ChurchCult Leader
Unite the RightActivistCharlottesville, NCCharlottesville, NC event in 2018 where white supremecist groups marched with tiki torches, and activist Heather Hyer was killed by a right-wing extremist who drove his car through the crowd.
University of Texas at AustinAcademicAustin, TX
JD VancePoliticianOHVenture capitalist and Peter Thiel acolyte running for Senate in Ohio
Ricky Vaughn
Ruben VerastiguiCriminalDCFormer RNC and other GOP offices staffer who made social media ads for the Trump campaign and was later arrested with child porn on his phone after a DHS sting.
George WallacePoliticianAlabama
Joe WalshMedia personality
Kelli WardPoliticianAZGOP Chair
Ron WatkinsExtremistIdentified as the most likely suspect to be Q of QAnon
Randy WeaverWhite SupremacistNaples, ID
Vicki WeaverWhite SupremacistNaples, ID
WeevWhite SupremacistAndrew "Weev" Auernheimer
Paul WeyrichWhite SupremacistArch-deacon of the New Right ultraconservative movement and hugely influential figure who founded the Heritage Foundation, Council for National Policy, and ALEC.
White Citizens CouncilsWhite Supremacist
Geert Wilders
Darren WilsonPublic SectorPolice officer who brutally killed a Black man, Michael Brown, in Ferguson, MO in 2014.
WikiLeaksForeign agent
Milo YiannopoulosMedia personality

Right-Wing Authoritarianism

It’s not just here at home in the US that fascism seems to have taken root in the population. There are many burgeoning nationalist movements resurrecting right-wing populism around the world, and as per many experts’ warnings, right-wing authoritarianism is on the rise around the globe.

Many of the right-wing populist thatches that have sprung up are at least in part, seeds planted by Vladimir Putin in his quest for Russian revanchism against the West following the end (or so we thought…) of the Cold War. Rumoured to be the richest man in the world by far, the former KGB agent was working in East Germany when the Berlin Wall fell, and has been pursuing his Lost Cause grievance ever since.

see also:

The right-wing authoritarianism movement is global

Given how seemingly easy it is for Charles Koch to buy American elections as the 15th richest person in the world, imagine what someone far wealthier and less provincial could accomplish. Marine Le Pen’s National Front in France took campaign cash directly from The Kremlin, Viktor Orban’s Hungary is Vladimir Putin’s strongest ally in the EU, the Belarusian dictator is propped up by Putin, who still occupies Ukraine’s Crimea, and the UK’s Brexit campaign acted as the canary in the coalmine for later disgraceful invasions of other nations’ sovereignty — perhaps most notably, election interference in the 2016, 2018, and 2020 US elections.

As such, it would be foolish not to see what’s happening here in America as part of a broader wave of right-wing populism and authoritarian fever that is very dangerous. We need to find out a lot more information about how all these puzzle pieces fit together, and get to the bottom of the real conspiracy clearly going on — if we can find it through all these smokescreen conspiracy theories clogging the propaganda waves.

Here’s a list of some of the extreme right-wing parties on the rise around the globe:

CountryFlagPartyAbbreviation
Austria๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡นFreedom PartyFPO
Belgium๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ชFlemish BlockVB
Britain๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡งUK Independence PartyUKIP
Britain First
National Front
Czech RepublicFreedom and Direct DemocracySPD
Denmark๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐDanish People's PartyDPP
Finland๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎTrue Finns
France๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ทNational FrontFN
Germany๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ชAlternative for GermanyAfD
Patriotic Europeans Against Islamization of the WestPegida
Greece๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ทSyriza
Hungary๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บMovement for a Better HungaryJobbik
Fidesz
Italy๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡นNorthern League
National Alliance
Japan๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ตNippon Kaigi
The Netherlands๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑParty for FreedomPPV
Liveable Netherlands
Pim Fortuyn's ListLPF
Norway๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ดProgress Party
The Philippines๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญ
Poland๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑLaw and Justice party
Portugal๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡นPopular Party
SerbiaSerbian Radical PartySRS
Spain๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ(Catalonian secession)
Sweden๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ชSweden Democrats
Switzerland๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญSwiss People's PartySVP
United States๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธRepublican PartyGOP

The Authoritarian Personality: Deference to a higher power

Sociologist Theodor Adorno created the “F scale” in a 1950 seminal work entitled The Authoritarian Personality — to rank the level of predilection to fascism in an individual, which became desirable both during and shortly after World War II.

In authoritarian personality theory, the defining traits of the Platonic fascist (or the ur-Fascist as Umberto Eco would later call them) include the following:

  • conventionalism — following the rules; “this is how we’ve always done things”; fundamentalist thinking; dogmatic philosophy; intolerance of ambiguity (and intolerance in general)
  • authoritarian submission — follow the Ruler; the Ruler is always right, no matter how obvious the lie or big the myth. only ingroup authority figures matter, though.
  • authoritarian aggression — “send in the troops,” “when the looting starts the shooting starts,” “dominate the streets”
  • anti-intellectualism — distrust of experts; paranoid politics; intellectualism is unmasculine
  • anti-intraception — a dislike of subjectivity and imagination: “the fact is…”; black and white thinking; dislike of flamboyant self-expression; monoculture
  • superstition — conspiracy theory; anti-vaxxers; QAnon
  • stereotypy — racism, sexism, classism, ageism, all the isms; homophobia, Islamophobia, transphobia, all the phobias
  • power and “toughness” — obsessed with dominance and submission; rigidly pro-hierarchy; solves problems with violence; values physical strength
  • destructiveness — dismantle the Federal government; remove environmental regulations; pull out of international alliances; weakening America’s place in the world, abandoning the EU, and kowtowing to dictators around the world
  • cynicism — “both sides do it,” whataboutism, all politicians are bad, conscience (non)voters
  • projectivity — everything is Obama’s fault, almost literally; claims Biden is corrupt; Hillary’s email server (though they all used and continue to use private email servers, every single one of them); claim that the Clinton campaign started the birther controversy; accuse everyone else of lying
  • exaggerated concerns over sex — anti-abortion; homophobia; pedophilia; excessive taboos; excessive shame

We are seeing all of these traits today. We see the rise of authoritarianism — we see it in our leadership, we see it in our communities, and we see it surging around the world.

We see it in a much larger percentage of our populace than many of us might have imagined. Research by Karen Stenner and others shows that across populations in the developed world, about a third of a given population will be prone to authoritarian tendencies. People of good character far outnumber the Right-Wing Authoritarians, but they can be subjugated, emotionally manipulated, strong-armed, abused, intimidated, made cynical by the RWAs. And the RWA personality is driven to actively hate outgroups in many outrageously twisted and depraved ways, from pettiness to genocide.

Right-Wing Authoritarianism

Refined by professor of psychology Bob Altemeyer (The Authoritarians, et al) in 1981, the Right-Wing Authoritarianism scale (RWA) addresses some of the limitations of the F scale and exhibits more predictive power in identifying individuals exhibiting authoritarian personality.

The RWA personality is associated with all of the following traits, beliefs, actions, patterns, and signs of authoritarianism:

  • extreme obedience
  • unquestioning respect for and submission to a chosen authority
  • repression
  • forceful insistence on hierarchy
  • striving for dominance in social hierarchies
  • supremacy
  • wolves vs. sheep worldview
  • Manichaean struggle
  • punitiveness; vengefulness; malignant envy
  • destructiveness
  • extremism
  • subordination to the collective
  • tribalism
  • cult of personality
  • cults
  • traditionalism
  • conservatism
  • fundamentalism
  • less openness to experience
  • aggression towards minority groups
  • resistance to change
  • justification(s) for social inequality
  • Libertarianism
  • police brutality
  • psychological abuse
  • hypocrisy
  • projection
  • magical thinking
  • disciplinarian
  • control freak
  • mass surveillance
  • repression
  • a primary drive to achieve relief from uncertainty, even at the cost of individual freedom

Democracy vs. Authoritarianism

Maybe we could offer up the RWA test as a “good faith” gesture, if one is interested in participating in civic discourse with credibility and authenticity. It would help us identify those individuals who are going to be unlikely to play by the rules of the game or have no intention of behaving fairly. It would help us draw authoritarianism and totalitarianism out of the proverbial closet and into public discourse so we can refute it vehemently in a proper forum.

Although we have bot tests, we don’t really have great ways of measuring and identifying human beings with deceptive agendas to help us in this battle of democracy vs. autocracy. If we could screen people as authoritarians via “honorable challenge,” we could save so much time by not wasting it on the lost causes whose power trip runs so deep it can never be exposed. It could serve as a way to drag out into the light any number of intolerable, anti-democratic sentiments masquerading as “strict Constitutionalism.” We can pry open the doublespeak and arm ourselves with the secret decoder rings of understanding RWA dogwhistles.

And maybe we can finally change the conversation by more easily identifying friendlies from foes from the start, without having to wade through every minefield.

Just maybe.

We must democratize computational skill

We need to bring the fire down from the mountain. We are not on that project — we are still on the opposite project: keeping the wizards behind the curtain.

Too many of the wizards are male, and are busying themselves in playing petty economic and status zero-sum power games instead of recognizing the context they are in — we are all in — as an infinite game in which the enlargement of the participant group to include and, not just reluctantly tolerate, but to avidly welcome women in to the club will massively benefit all the players.ย 

Then there are the white wizards who create pseudoscientific rationalizations for wasting time obsessing over 18th century racial animus as a massive distraction from having to do the work of creating anything useful or contributing any value to the world. They’ve taken their centuries of evolutionary advantage and painstakingly developed economic pie to split hairs over who ought to be denied a few of the crumbs, as a cheap method of papering over the deep well of collective insecurity and ego fragility precipitated by a lack of meaningful individuation and their failure to create anything useful or contribute any value to the world.

We could be playing this game together. Instead, we furtively dart about in Plato’s Cave imagining we are still living in a world of scarcity, rather than leveling ourselves up to behold the vision of the new world of abundance we have the capacity to create.

Not Ready Player One.

Optimism and the Condorcet jury theorem

Is it possible the Condorcet jury theorem provides not just a mathematical basis for democracy and the justice system, but a model predictor of one’s political persuasion as well?

If you’re an optimist, you have no trouble believing that p > 1/2. You give people the benefit of the doubt that they will try their best and most often, succeed in tipping over the average even if just by a hair. That’s all it takes for the theorem to prove true: that the larger the number of voters, the closer the group gets to making the “correct” decision 100% of the time.

On the other hand, if you’re a pessimist, you might quibble with that — saying that people are low-information voters who you don’t think very highly of, and don’t find very capable. You might say that people will mostly get it wrong, in which case p < 1/2 and the theory feedback loops all the way in the other direction, to where the optimal number of voters is 1: the autocrat.

A political sorting hat of sorts

Optimists will tend to believe in the power of people to self-govern and to act out of compassion a fair amount of the time, thus leaning to the left: to the Democrats, social democrats, socialists, and the alt-Left. Pessimists will tend to favor a smaller, tighter cadre of wealthy elite rulers — often, such as themselves. They might be found in the GOP, Tea Party, Freedom Caucus, Libertarian, paleoconservative, John Birch Society, Kochtopus, anarcho-capitalist, alt-Right, and other right-wing groups including the KKK and other white militia groups around the country.

Granted the model is crude, but so was the original theorem — what is the “correct” choice in a political contest? Or does the Condorcet jury theorem imply that, like becoming Neo, whatever the majority chooses will by definition be The Right One for the job? ๐Ÿค”

…if so, we definitively have the wrong President.