Liberal Fascism by Jonah Goldberg

luc

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
I stopped abruptly about halfway through Liberal Fascism. I had recently finished JFK and the Unspeakable. Liberal Fascism at the halfway point started criticizing JFK, believing Oswald was a lone gunman communist instead of a CIA/MIC patsy, and arguing that JFK would not have prevented the Vietnam war. This shows me that the author does not know important, basic facts, so then what am I supposed to do with his arguments based on his misunderstanding of the facts. I guess it's like evolution where I have to mentally correct the author's mistakes as I am going through the text.
Yes to the bold part. I mean, if you stopped reading the minute you disagree with something, there would hardly be a book left you could finish!

That being said, there are quite a few things worth criticizing about Goldberg's book: he's a conservative pundit and has an axe to grind with everything "left". And frankly, this whole left/right angle isn't really that useful when talking about fascism, except for debunking the leftist narrative that Hitler was a "continuation of conservatism", which is nonsense. Nazism was a form of communism minus internationalism, with some right-wing elements added (obsession with cleanliness, racial ideology and so on).

All in all, I found the book very valuable in giving some historical perspective on authoritarian policies that are usually justified and even celebrated by the left. It's an insightful read especially in this day and age that is so thoroughly dominated by, well, liberal fascism.
 

Laura

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Yes, you have to "weed as you read" MOST of the time. Some of the best information I've ever gotten about several subjects came from books where there was a lot that was wrong.

The JFK assassination is a particularly touchy subject, too. A lot of people just can't go there. And a lot of people who can go there know that if they do so publicly, they will be shut down.

It really is true that often, discretion is the better part of valor.
 

SMM

The Living Force
This sounds like a fascinating book, the topic aside.

There's a book by David Garland called The Culture of Control, which looks at social and cultural factors of crime in the US and UK during the 20th century. Garland mentions Neoliberalism and Neoconservatism, or the New Right, in the '60s as one of the reason for an increase in crime.

This came to mind as, while I was reading this, I wondered if Garland got the context wrong or backwards, and maybe it was more due to changes in the New Left, posing as Right?

Changes in both Right and Left, just more Left.
 

hlat

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Yes to the bold part. I mean, if you stopped reading the minute you disagree with something, there would hardly be a book left you could finish!
Yes, you have to "weed as you read" MOST of the time.
The difficulty is I would need to already have the knowledge in order to be able to recognize the false ideas in the text. So if I didn't know and was trying to learn, I don't think I could recognize the false ideas. If I didn't know better, then I could be led to believe the false ideas and quickly get lost when those false ideas are foundational, like all the people believing evolution. It'll take a lot of reading and building a base of knowledge to even have a chance to figure out what is false. It's definitely a lot of work.
 

Hello H2O

Jedi Council Member
FOTCM Member
The difficulty is I would need to already have the knowledge in order to be able to recognize the false ideas in the text. So if I didn't know and was trying to learn, I don't think I could recognize the false ideas. If I didn't know better, then I could be led to believe the false ideas and quickly get lost when those false ideas are foundational, like all the people believing evolution. It'll take a lot of reading and building a base of knowledge to even have a chance to figure out what is false. It's definitely a lot of work.
I think that is where the power of the network and networking comes in. It is true when you are reading something, you only have your own knowledge base to go on, but with the network, you can tap into the wider knowledge base of the network or the group. IMO.
 
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