The Smith & Zurcher Dictionary of American Politics, updated in 1944 from Smith’s 1924 edition, very cautiously “defined” fascism NOT as religious socialism during WWII, but rather:
fascism. The authoritarian political system and totalitarian social regime evolved by Benito Mussolini and his followers of the Fascist party in Italy after 1922, hence any actual political system such as the regimes of the German Nazis or the Spanish Falangists inspired by the Italian model or comparable to it. Also any set of ideas which advocates the destruction of democratic parliamentarism, every kind of personal liberty, and the pluralistic social order; and which demands instead the institution of an irresponsible political dictatorship, supported by a single hierarchically organized party, the regimentation of all forms of social and economic activity under a regime of totalitarian governmental control, and the liberal use of force, violence and arbitrary power in the process of government. Fascist ideas have had no great currency in America, although they have been advocated by the so-called Silver Shirts, the German-American Bund, and like organizations.
This reads as though several layers of qualifiers and editorial comment were added to distance the NSDAP from both U.S. parties and those of so-called allies. It also conflicts with another definition in the same source. The authors did not define National Socialism as Christian, which Hitler’s 1920 platform most emphatically did. Instead:
National Socialism. The authoritarian, totalitarian and imperialistic doctrine of German Fascism developed by Adolf Hitler and his followers after 1923.
Desperate over the declining popularity of books after decades of government schools and inane teevee, dictionaries have taken to redefining anarchist as what Republicans have been labeling libertarians since 1972. Many had already redefined liberal as the label Republicans applied first to Liberal Party members demanding repeal of the Prohibition Amendment, then to Democrats for copying that wet plank and winning the next five elections.
Both of these retaskings of language into vehicles of misleading execration have been added to less particular American dictionaries with a straight face. Everyone else in the world is baffled that Republicans managed to get U.S. dictionaries to refer to liberals in exactly the way Hitler did, with the insinuation that all such creatures were at best communists and at worst, puppets of international stock market jewry.
But those same foreigners, all of them socialists of one variety or another, received the U.S. Republican redefinition of libertarians–as bomb-throwing communist terrorists with no party of their own–with the childish delight that altruistic self-deception enables.
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