Sunday, November 20, 2011

On Øyvind Strømmen’s Labeling of Fjordman as a Fascist

Reader Mriggs sends this response to our recent posts about Øyvind Strømmen’s book smearing Fjordman as a “fascist”.

On Øyvind Strømmen’s labeling of Fjordman as a fascist
by Mriggs

Øyvind Strømmen has labeled his compatriot Fjordman a fascist, or — if you want to split hairs — Fjordman’s ideology as fascist. He does this on the basis of a particular definition of fascism. Now, it doesn’t take much trawling of the internet to come up with a great number of definitions of fascism, each wildly divergent from the next. Just look up “definitions of fascism” on Wikipedia to get a good taste of that dish. There you can find several definitions of this same concept by a similar number of scholars, activists and authors, and it does not take a great deal of insight to discern that many, if not most, are self-serving and designed to discredit a political target or even whitewash a different ideology.

Øyvind Strømmen picked one of these definitions, one which fits his purposes — once again to discredit an ideological opponent. He describes this definition by Roger Griffin as “widely used” but fails to mention it is “highly contested”, according to Wikipedia. Griffin’s definition, according to Strømmen, is:

[F]ascism is best defined as a revolutionary form of nationalism, one that sets out to be a political, social and ethical revolution, welding the ‘people’ into a dynamic national community under new elites infused with heroic values. The core myth that inspires this project is that only a populist, trans-class movement of purifying, cathartic national rebirth (palingenesis) can stem the tide of decadence.

The most glaring shortcoming of said definition is its non-mention of violence and glorification of violence, which is the distinction of fascism that makes it the most terrifying and sets it apart from most other ideologies, even Marxism. Marxism approves of and promotes violence, but only as ends towards a means. Fascism revels in the use of violence. To have a definition of fascism without a mention of this striking and fundamental trait is as much good as a definition of democracy without the people’s right to choose their leaders. Indeed, as the affection for violence is such a striking trait of fascism, it must be left out of any definition that is fabricated as a tool to discredit others.

Finally, it is George Orwell who says it best:
…the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless. In conversation, of course, it is used even more wildly than in print. I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Gandhi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley’s broadcasts, Youth Hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else … Except for the relatively small number of Fascist sympathisers, almost any English person would accept ‘bully’ as a synonym for ‘Fascist’. That is about as near to a definition as this much-abused word has come.

Is the kind of transparent charlatanism that Øyvind Strømmen practices even worthy of a rebuttal? Sadly, yes.

We live in times of economic and political upheaval, and in such times charlatans become prophets.


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't say the term has no meaning. It has a very clear coinage and etymology, coming from the Latin 'fasces', an axe with the handle bound about by sticks to reinforce it, used as a symbol of military/government strength through unity achieved by strict and coercive discipline.

Glorification of the systematic violence of a strong central government of the Roman pattern (the axe and the lashings) is certainly a fundamental part of the symbolism, but the binding of the sticks as reinforcement around the axe handle as a symbol of absolute unity is no less important.

The symbol (and the name derived from it) was deliberately chosen by the Fascists to represent their ideal of complete subordination of all aspects of society to the central government. The violence of that government was understood by the founders and leaders of the movement as a means to an end, not an end in itself (naturally, such a movement does attract those for whom violence is its own end, but they chose neither the symbol nor the name).

Chiu Chun-Ling.


According to Andrew Berwick he opened his book at least ten years before the operation, was this not enough time to write the manifesto in his own words, why recycle the work of others?

Anonymous said...

Does the Swedish Foundation Expo with its journal Expo correspond to Øjvind Strømmen?

The Expo Foundation is a private taxmoney-financed Left radical so called Research Foundation and publisher of the journal Expo. It was founded in 1995 by the Communist and posthumous author Stieg Larsson with the alleged assignment to study and map out "anti-democratic, extremist and racist tendencies in society". Operations are said to be conducted on a voluntary basis. The Foundation's platform asserts that it cherishes democracy and freedom of expression against racist, right-extremist, anti-Semitic and totalitarian tendencies in the society (place for laugh!).

Supreem priest and the Goebbels counterpart of the Expo Foundation is Daniel Pool, here going into great detailes about Anders Behring Breivik and his connection to the Framskrittspartiet (Progress Party), in Norwegian state TV

About the Swedish social-conservative, nationalistic party the Swedendemocrats (SD) with 20 seats of 349 in the Parliament, Expo spokesman Magnus Manhammar has the following to say:

"The Swedendemocrat's (SD) biggest issue right now is to single out Muslims as scapegoats. Muslims are singled out as the major threat. The Muslims will according to the SD take over Sweden as well as Europe. Anders Behring Breivik shares the SD's views and values. What distinguishes him from the SD is his violence and his actions, not his ideas. You cannot not blame the SD for his deeds - but you can blame the SD for spreading hatred against Muslims." said ."
"But the SD has not really an ideologic basis in addition to the brownish one. SD is neither right nor left. Unlike its counterparts in Denmark and Norway, which are right-wing populistic."