What Americans Still Haven’t Learned About How Democracies Implode

Is America Undergoing a Fascist Collapse? 

What Americans Still Haven’t Learned About How Democracies

Here’s what happened in America today. The President (after admiring one of the world’s dictators) announced that he would build camps in which to imprison little children forcibly separated from their parents.
Perhaps that makes your blood run cold. Or maybe not. Don’t worry — that’ll happen by the end of this essay, I promise.


Talking to Radio NL host Brett Mineer about so-called Yellow Vest protestors in Kamloops threatening him and his family

Talking to Radio NL host Brett Mineer about so-called Yellow Vest protestors in Kamloops threatening him and his family.

After tweeting about the Yellow Vests, Mineer received over 800 messages, overwhelmingly from Alberta and Ontario, which threatened his family and detailing how he should be murdered. In this interview (9:45), he discusses the threats and shows, for example, how much of the Yellow Vests Canada rhetoric aligns with Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer's criticisms of the UN Migration Pact. Mineer notes that Scheer is playing with fire. Indeed!

Rise of fascism in Europe

Across Europe, nationalist and far-right parties have made significant electoral gains. 

Some have taken office, others have become the main opposition voice, and even those yet to gain a political foothold have forced centrist leaders to adapt.

In part, this can be seen as a backlash against the political establishment in the wake of the financial and migrant crises, but the wave of discontent also taps into long-standing fears about globalisation and a dilution of national identity.

Race and Capitalism

"In October, the Heilbroner Center will host Professor Dawson and Professor Nancy Fraser in an event which will extend their ongoing conversation about the fundamental concepts required to understand — and challenge — capitalist society. Fraser perceives capitalism as an institutionalized social order, whose scope extends far beyond the arrangement of commodity production and exchange in markets. For Fraser, capitalism forges — and draws upon — the social and the political, as well as the economic. Dawson expands this framework to develop the concept of a neoliberal racial order.

How fascism returned to Europe

The most important read of the week hands down is historian Timothy Snyder's disquieting essay in The New Republic about the return of fascism in Europe. When I first read the article, my instincts told me it must be irresponsibly alarmist. Stalin, Hitler, Ukrainian nationalism, Putin, German parties of the far left and right, "Eurasian" ideology, visions of a unified front against Western pluralist democracy stretching "from Lisbon to Vladivostok" — Snyder connects an awful lot of dots in 4,000 or so words, and to my ear it sounded faintly unhinged.