Don’t start here! Start with Part 1. https://fascismsite.wordpress.com/2017/11/12/fascism-doesnt-leap-it-creeps
“On Billy Bush weekend,” Bannon bragged, he brought Bill Clinton’s accusers in. Gleefully, he reported how rattled Bill & Hillary both were at the debate. It’s amazing how many people, Bannon included, never heard from their Mommas that two wrongs don’t make a right.
Actually, I’m sure Bannon knows that Bill Clinton’s bad acts don’t minimize Donald Trump’s bad acts in any way. He’s also probably smart enough to realize that Hillary is not responsible for Bill’s actions. But Bannon **is** smart enough to realize that somehow his followers will believe what they want to believe — despite logic. Bannon, the brilliant manipulator, can get even evangelical Christians to accept a candidate who promised to release his taxes and then did not, who has been married and divorced several times, and who regularly calls people names.
Bannon promised a story that night or the next day about the collusion between the Democrats and the “Bezos-Amazon-Washington Post” to do a hit-job on Roy Moore. Bannon himself needed more evidence on Moore, despite four women already having come forward (and, as of this writing, five). Without more evidence, Bannon said, “I’m standing with him.” Oh, and he has a daughter who went to West Point, so he implied that he can’t be a misogynist.
My next note listed Columbus and Teddy Roosevelt. Next to it, I wrote “Don’t worry re: Confed Mon.” Confederate monuments have been a hot-button issue since the Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Those on the left, and many on the right, have had it with glorifying those who defended slavery. Columbus “discovered” America, nevermind that Native Americans had always been here. It apparently only counts when the Europeans arrive. And nevermind that those same Europeans decimated native people and waged a campaign of cultural genocide.
Bannon didn’t say Columbus is great, but he made fun of people who don’t exalt Columbus. It’s deniable racism. Bannon is smart; he knows the history. He also knows that many Americans don’t, and the white supremacists don’t care either way. Bannon manipulates, and he manipulates very, very well.
Among the “hobbits and deplorables” there’s “more decency, grit and determination” than among the Goldman Sachs donor class…said Bannon, the donor class Goldman Sachs alumnus. “We need to get angry,” as if they’re victims. Social psychology research, for decades, has known that a sure way to create group cohesiveness is to have a common enemy. Bannon and gang have created that enemy – liberals and even the Republican party are against them. The white Christian suffers so much. They are the true victims.
But all of that disappears as unimportant when you see what’s next.
Something Bannon said struck me. I didn’t understand it, but it stuck out. He said something about tomorrow (November 11) and the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. And he immediately referenced the Holocaust – I’m not sure he ever said the word “Holocaust” – but he spoke of 280 million people dead in death chambers and from starvation. He said it was “right after Einstein.” I’m glad there’s video, because we need to go back to this piece.
11-11 at 11. I asked my well-read history-loving husband about the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, and he spoke of Armistice Day, the end of World War I in 1918. Just before the rise of the Nazis.
In part seven of this blog, we talked about the codes we use in daily lives in our language. Here, we’ll talk about what we classically think of as codes. My husband brought up last night that White supremacists love 88, for example, because it stands for Heil Hitler, since H is the 8th letter of the alphabet.
I started to do some research. White supremacists have all kinds of numeric codes. 1-11 is code for the Aryan Knights, because A is the first letter of the alphabet and K is the 11th. 12 is code for Aryan Brotherhood because A and B are the first and second letters of the alphabet. There are more.
But think for a minute about 11-11-11. You know the code. That’s right, since K is the 11th letter of the alphabet, 11-11-11 is KKK.
Bannon could, and probably would, say that he brought up 11-11-11 since it’s Veteran’s Day, so he was recalling Armistice Day. It was also the day before November 11. And, of course, there’s the possibility that Bannon is clueless. But I doubt it. Bannon is smart, and he takes cover where he finds it.
11-11-11 serves as a powerful clue to white supremacist followers, who know that he must deny white supremacy publicly. Other white supremacists would pick it up when his more mainstream followers wouldn’t. He gets to please both, while completely denying white supremacist ties.
Hate symbols research from the Anti-Defamation League. https://www.adl.org/education/references/hate-symbols
Follow Dr. Cleaveland on Twitter: @CHSPolitico