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The Name Game Is Another Blow to Our Republic

The Name Game Is Another Blow to Our Republic


That’s one more medallion to add to my string of honorable and not-so-honorable titles.

Semi-fascism is the label President Joe Biden slapped on Donald Trump’s MAGA philosophy in a late August speech. Supporters of Trump are now apparently enemies of the state who despise the Constitution. Which means that about half of American voters qualify as a goose-stepping gang of Nazis.

Writer Jeffrey Barg mocks the outraged conservative response to Biden’s label of semi-fascist in an article for The Philadelphia Inquirer, insisting that Republicans are “feigning the same outrage they mustered for Hilary Clinton’s ‘basket of deplorables’ and Barack Obama’s ‘clinging to guns and religion’ comments.”

Near the end of his essay, Barg delivered a remark that made me burst out laughing:

The word fascism has trended for days on Merriam-Wesbster.com, which defines it as ‘a political philosophy, movement, or regime … that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.’ Sound like anyone you know?

Why, yes, Mr. Barg. It sounds exactly like someone I know. It sounds like Joe Biden.

With one exception.

No one would ever accuse Uncle Joe of exalting our nation. After less than two years in office, he and his administration, aided and abetted by Congressional leaders and federal agencies, have allowed millions of illegal immigrants into the country, rendered the economy a shambles, made a debacle of our nation’s retreat from Afghanistan, and severed the bonds of an already divided nation by their rhetoric and embrace of critical theory. They’ve increased federal regulations, demolished our fossil fuel industry, politicized federal law enforcement agencies, and suppressed information on social media.

Then came El Presidente’s Sept. 1st address on the soul of the nation in which he expanded on his earlier diatribe. I deliberately avoided watching this speech, figuring I’d catch the highlights in the morning. When I first saw the photo of him at Philadelphia’s Independence Hall flanked by two armed Marines, all set against a red backdrop that looked like the gateway to hell, I laughed, thinking some angry conservative had created a meme. But the photo, of course, was real, and so were Joe’s bitter words as he denounced Republicans and MAGA Americans as storm troopers bent on driving the country into dictatorship and servitude.

In a word, as semi-fascists.

In one way, however, Joe Biden’s rhetoric inspired me. I’ve long had difficulty finding an appropriate name that would describe the president and his supporters. Liberal doesn’t work anymore—I think leftists themselves long ago pitched that word into the trash can—and progressive, given our present economic ruin and cultural decay, is ludicrous. But if I’m to be a semi-fascist, then I think semi-Marxist would do nicely as a descriptive catchall for this crew.

Plug that name into the news, and you might come up with headlines like these: “Semi-Marxists in Congress Pass the Inflation Reduction Act,” “Semi-Marxist Vice-President Kamala Harris Delivers Another Word Salad at the Border,” and “Semi-Marxist President Joe Biden Again Denounces Semi-Fascist Americans.”

Enough of my buffoonery.

President Biden, his speech writers, and all those cheering on his radical rhetoric have overnight turned a gully of separation between Red- and Blue-State Americans into a canyon. Rather than reminding all Americans of their common heritage, of the beauty and truth of such documents as the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, and of the vital need to solve our problems as one people, his hate-driven words have instead magnified our divisions. A leader who labels half the citizens in our republic as “semi-fascists” no longer represents the American people.

This bombastic hysteria should appall all voters: Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. It is a call for civil war, perhaps not with guns and bullets, not yet anyway, but with ostracism and prejudice toward “the other.”

United we stand, divided we fall” dates back at least to the time of Greek storyteller Aesop. In 1858, Abraham Lincoln took this precept from the biblical book of Matthew and in a speech to the Illinois Republican State Convention declared, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

The Biden administration along with its supporters, including some members of our mainstream press, seem more than willing to test the parameters of this ancient wisdom.

Image Credit: C-SPAN

Jeff Minick
Jeff Minick

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  • Avatar
    Roman Arones
    September 7, 2022, 9:04 am

    Nothing wrong with focusing your eyes on your country, but if you look beyond it you might see a similar theme of dividing nations in many other countries of the Western world, not necessarily using the same approach, but with the same results. "Divide et impera" seems to be the motto, the question that follows is who benefits from it?

    • Avatar
      Robert Tusch@Roman Arones
      September 7, 2022, 1:03 pm

      Hello Dr. Jeff, first, thanks for good writing on good subjects. I liked your essay on boredom. This note is just to let you know that we both have an interest in finding ways to develop young children into capable adults. More later as I develop my story on using process improvement techniques to understand the shortfalls of the school system.

  • Avatar
    September 8, 2022, 8:36 am

    excellent post thank you

  • Avatar
    September 8, 2022, 12:11 pm

    ‘Things fall apart, the center cannot hold’….the rift is unbridgeable?

  • Avatar
    Richard Hendricks
    September 8, 2022, 1:10 pm

    Clearly, democrats never read Mussolini’s Doctrine of Fascism. If they had, they would b=not make such specious claims.

    Mussolini’s Doctrine of Fascism (1932) provides a clear statement of fascist ideology:
    "…Fascism is a historical conception, in which man is what he is only in so far as he works within the spiritual process where he finds himself, in the family or social group, in the nation and in the history in which all nations collaborate. From this follows the great value of tradition, in memories, in language, in customs, in the standards of social life. Outside history man is nothing. Consequently Fascism is opposed to all the individualistic abstractions of a materialistic nature like those of the 18th century; and it is opposed to all Jacobin utopias and innovations. It does not consider that "happiness" is possible upon earth…. Against individualism, Fascism is for the state…. Liberalism denied the state in the interests of the particular individual; Fascism reaffirms the state as the true reality of the individual…. Not a race, not a geographically determined region, but as a community historically perpetuating itself, a multitude unified by a single idea, which is the will to existence and to power: consciousness of itself, personality.”

    According to the doctrine, it is not Capitalism, individualism, or any way part of the Republican ideology.

  • Avatar
    Rick Gordon
    September 8, 2022, 7:23 pm

    The President should be a ‘united’ not a ‘divider’. I assume that Biden has given in to the left wing of his party and it is not pretty.


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