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Synopses of Other Important Works The White Supremacist Mindset The Fascist Mind In a recent article ("Eternal Fascism," New York Review of Books, reprinted in Utne Reader, November/December 1995, p. 57), the novelist and cultural critic Umberto Eco offers "Fourteen Ways for Looking at a Blackshirt." These features of "UrFascism , or Eternal Fascism" include: the cult of tradition; rejection of modernism; action for action's sake; the equating of disagreement with treason; fear of difference; appeal to a frustrated middle class; the notion of a new world order; a sense of humiliation at the wealth and force of enemies; the conviction that life is permanent warfare; contempt for the weak; emphasis on heroism; transference of will to power to sexual matters; populism and disdain for parliamentary government; and Newspeak-corruption of language. Eco warns: Or-Fascism is still around us, sometimes in plainclothes. It would be so much easier for us if there appeared on the world scene somebody saying, "I want to reopen Auschwitz, I want the Blackshirts to parade again in the Italian squares." Life is not that simple. Or-Fascism can come back under the most innocent of disguises. Our duty is to uncover it and to point our finger at any of its new instances.... Freedom and liberation are an unending task (pp. 57, 59). How to Speak in Code In his book There's No Such Thing as Free Speech, and It's a Good Thing, Too (Oxford University Press, 1994), Stanley Fish writes of how latter-day bigots have learned to wrap themselves in the American flag, quote Martin Luther King, and appeal to principles of merit. Code words are all around us these days. When a politician declares that we have to stop catering to special interests and pay attention to the middle class, you know who the special interests are and you know that the color of the middle class-symbolically, if not empirically-is white. And when another politician attacks welfare mothers who breed children in order to claim larger benefits, you know that the real message is composed of two racial stereotypes: (1) the sexually-promiscuous black ... , and (2) the lazy and shiftless negro made familiar to so many Americans by the comedian 5tepin Fetchit (p. 90). Fish goes on to detail how such speaking in code enables the speaker to play upon cultural prejudices against blacks, foreigners, and the poor while appearing to take the high road. liThe favorite strategy is to find a word or concept that seems invulnerable to challengelaw , equality, merit, neutrality-and then to give it a definition that generates the desired Copyrighted Material 602 Synopses of Other Important Works outcome. David Duke has it down pat" (p. 91). And so, he shows, does his favorite rival, Dinesh D'Souza, who according to Fish uses innuendo and selective quotation to make it appear that it is African-Americans who are the aggressors, imposing on long-suffering, innocent whites and dragging down our universities at the same time. "No Longer a War of Words" First published in 1978 under a pseudonym, William Pierce's Turner Diaries is undergoing a new vogue. The novel details a frightening scenario in which the United States is caught up in a race war between slovenly blacks and heroic whites. Interviewed by Mike Wallace on CBS 60 Minutes (May 19, 1996), Pierce responded to queries as follows: WALLACE: We are now in a process of self-destruction in the United States? PIERCE: In a process of disintegration And it's not just me-not just me and people around me who-who feel this. There's a general feeling of this throughout the society, a-a feeling that things are coming apart, a feeling that the center cannot hold.... WALLACE: The central message of his novel ... is that the United States is being ruined by blacks, Hispanics, Jews-just about everyone but those he calls his people, Aryan whites.... PIERCE: Race mixing is-is one of the things which is causing the breakdown of American society , and the alienation of the people generally. WALLACE: You refer often ... to blacks as rapists, thugs, dumb, cannibals.... PIERCE: I was envisioning the breakdown of society as a culmination of the trends that I could see in the 1970s. A passage from The Turner Diaries (National Vanguard, 2d ed. 1980) follows: September 16,1991. Today it finally began! After all these years of talking-and nothing but talking-we have finally taken our first...