I wouldn’t normally pay much attention to such a hysterical article, but the link from the PCUSA caucus called the Witherspoon Society made it worth noticing. The article itself is by Chris Hedges, the former New York Times reporter who now specializes in demonizing everything connected with conservative Christianity. The Witherspoon folks say of his article:
Chris Hedges, who graduated from Harvard Divinity School and is the author of American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America, analyzes the rise of Mike Huckabee’s standing in the Republican primary campaign as showing “a seismic shift in the tactics, ideology and direction of the radical Christian right.”
Hedges himself does his usual song-and-dance:
The rise of Mike Huckabee as a presidential candidate represents a seismic shift in the tactics, ideology and direction of the radical Christian right. Huckabee may stumble and falter in later primaries, but his right-wing Christian populism is here to stay. Huckabee represents a new and potent force in American politics, and the neocons and corporate elite, who once viewed the yahoos of the Christian right as the useful idiots, are now confronted with the fact that they themselves are the ones who have been taken for a ride. Members of the Christian right, recruited into the Republican Party and manipulated to vote against their own interests around the issues of abortion and family values, are in rebellion. They are taking the party into new, uncharted territory. And they presage, especially with looming economic turmoil, the rise of a mass movement that could demolish what is left of American democracy and set the stage for a Christian fascism….
Huckabee has close ties with the Christian Reconstructionist or Dominionist branch of the Christian right. The Dominionist movement, which seeks to cloak itself in the mantle of the Christian faith and American patriotism, is small in numbers but influential. It departs from traditional evangelicalism. It seeks to redefine traditional democratic and Christian terms and concepts to fit an ideology that calls on the radical church to take political power. It shares many prominent features with classical fascist movements, at least as such movements are defined by the scholar Robert O. Paxton, who sees fascism as “a form of political behavior marked by obsessive preoccupation with community decline, humiliation, or victimhood and by compensatory cultures of unity, energy, and purity, in which a mass-based party of committed nationalist militants, working in uneasy but effective collaboration with traditional elites, abandons democratic liberties and pursues with redemptive violence and without ethical or legal restraints goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.”
There’s more in that vein, the usual paranoid drivel with no basis in actual events at all, but it’s apparently good enough to keep Hedges in steady work. Anyway, the point is that I found it interesting that the Witherspoon Society seems to put their stamp of approval on such nonsense, which is the far left-wing equivalent of the back helicopter fantasies of the far right-wing. So does that mean the Witherspoon Society has joined the Tin-Foil Hat Brigade? You be the judge.