Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Kerim Friedman also has a post up on fascism, including a nice paragraph from Umberto Eco. A few months ago I referred to fascism as being defined by the notion of "the pederast from Opus Dei." Since I'm tired I'll just add to that line a little: fascism is the rule of absolutes, with an absolute exemption from that rule given to the ruler himself. Only the ruler is allowed, as God himself is allowed, to contradict himself.
But my interest in the post was in what predates 'mature' fascism, if such a thing can be said to exist; and that is a philosophical position that all relations are relations of power, that 'justice' as a concept is absurd. Fascism is only a logical result of this assumption, one that has been a part of post modern philosophy since it came about. The anti-bourgeois right was both a progenitor of fascism and of postmodernism. From de Sade to Duchamp, from the decadence of haute couture, to Robbe-Grillet and Foucault, the sense of the stultifying banality of bourgeois morality has always been set against the casual and free thinking, amoral(?) grace of the aristocracy. But now after the 'failure' of socialism, such ideas have a new intellectual backing. It is this stupid indulgence that is one of the reasons a mediocre hypocrite and drunk is running the country. I'm not blaming Foucault. I'm not an idiot. He's just a symptom of a sort of general passivism that allows manic activists the opportunity to have their fun. In this world, the man who wants power allows himself the freedom to contradict himself that a respectable bourgeois would not. And even immorality is justified, as moral, since in a Nietzschean sense, arbitrariness is the prerogative of a god.
Think about what I'm saying in the context of this from The Guardian.

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