Thomas Ramey Watson

Fascist America: Is it too late to avoid?

In August 2009, I [Sara Robinson] wrote a piece titled Fascist America: Are We There Ye

t? that sparked much discussion on both the

left and right ends of

the blogosphere.

In it, I argued that — according to the best scholarship on how fascist regimes emerge — America was on a path that was running much too close to the fail-safe point beyond which no previous democracy has ever been able to turn back from a full-on fascist state. I also noted that the then-emerging Tea Party had a lot of proto-fascist hallmarks, and that it had the potential to become a clear and present danger to the future of our democracy if it ever got enough traction to start winning elections in a big way.

On the first anniversary of that article, Jonah Goldberg — the right’s revisionist-in-chief on the subject of fascism — actually used an entire National Review column to taunt me about what he characterized as a failure of prediction.

Where’s that fascist state you promised

? He hooted.

It’ s funny he

should ask.

Because this coming election may, in fact, be a critical turning point on that road.

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