Understanding the new far right threat

Rick Kuhn What are the far right and fascism today, and how should we respond to them? Two new books by Marxists try to answer these questions: David Renton’s The New Authoritarians: Convergence on the Right is scheduled to appear in April; Enzo Traverso’s The New Faces of Fascism: Populism and the...CONTINUE READING

The undoing of social democracy

Rick Kuhn “Pasokisation” is a term for the collapse in support for social democratic parties. It is associated with the rise in support for the far right and fascists. In 2009, the Pan-Hellenic Socialist Party, whose acronym in Greek is Pasok, won 44 percent of the vote and a majority of seats in pa...CONTINUE READING

From social democracy to fascism: how Bolsonaro took Brazil

Rick Kuhn The Workers’ Party, with its mass working class base and the largest political organisation in Brazil, bears some responsibility for the victory of a fascist, Jair Bolsonaro, in the presidential election on 28 October. The stagnation of the Brazilian economy and the collapse of the vote fo...CONTINUE READING

What is socialism?

Rick Kuhn We are all socialists now”, said sir William George Granville Venables Vernon Harcourt, later a senior British government minister, in 1887. Newsweek carried the front page headline “We’re all socialists now” in 2009. Both the politician and the publication were vehement defenders of capit...CONTINUE READING

Romper stomped

Rick Kuhn With all the analytical insight of a two-minute news report, but with less artistic finesse, the new streaming series Romper Stomper hams up fascists and anarchists in contemporary Melbourne. The series opens with its fundamental premise: both fascists and anti-fascists are violent thugs....CONTINUE READING

Australia isn’t Austria, but fascism can grow here too

Rick Kuhn Europe’s most successful fascist party is set to enter government after Austria’s federal election on 15 October. Details of a coalition between the racist neoliberals of the conservative Austrian People’s Party and fascists of the Freedom Party are currently being negotiated. With the fai...CONTINUE READING

Labor in a tizz over how to save apartheid Israel

Rick Kuhn There’s a fight going on inside the Labor Party over the cosmetics of its position on Israel and Palestine. Currently, party leader Bill Shorten, who wants to shake the hand of Israeli prime minister Benyamin Netanyahu while he’s visiting Australia, is sticking with the ALP’s long standing...CONTINUE READING

The far right advances in Germany

Rick Kuhn The far right, racist Alternative for Germany (AfD) came second in elections in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern on 4 September. With 22 percent of the vote, it outpolled the Christian Democrats of conservative federal chancellor Angela Merkel, behind only the Social Democrats on 29 per...CONTINUE READING

Turning public servants into silent slaves

Rick Kuhn The Labor-Green coalition government in the ACT wants to control how its employees behave outside work hours. Under legislation it has prepared, public servants who say or do things in a private capacity that the government doesn’t like will be disciplined or sacked. It will also punish th...CONTINUE READING