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Friendly Fascism: The New Face of Power in America (Forbidden Bookshelf Book 18) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 442 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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- Book 18 of 27 in Forbidden Bookshelf
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“At a time of escalating political uncertainty, when the forces of totalitarianism threaten once more to crawl out of the American woodwork, Friendly Fascism is a powerful tool—better yet, a weapon—that can help us avert a distinctly unfriendly future.” —Alvin Toffler
“First-rate . . . A fascinating, provocative job. Bertram Gross has written an important book, and it deserves the widest possible audiences.” —Michael Harrington
About the Author
- ASIN : B01AVTU70C
- Publisher : Open Road Media (March 8, 2016)
- Publication date : March 8, 2016
- Language : English
- File size : 4395 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 442 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #115,155 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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In short...a MUST READ.
For anyone familiar with modern social theory, it is apparent that the author's thesis is a quite clever and accurate extension of sociologist C. Wright Mills' well known notions of what came to be known as the `mass society' theory. This was an essential aspect of Mills' famous theory of the power elite as forwarded in a book with the same title. Like social theorist G. William Domhoff ("The Higher Circles"), Professor Gross shows how the deceptively friendly and engaging style of the powers that be actually constitute an increasingly dangerous threat to the democratic process and to the long-term survival of our precious civil liberties. Of course, for Americans used to the association between the term `fascism' and the image of angry totalitarian states such as Nazi Germany and the Italy of the same period of time, it is perhaps difficult to associate with the notion that clever and systematic manipulation of the general population through use of the mass media is a form of fascistic influence. Yet, as Gross argues so persuasively, that is exactly what it is.
The term that pops to mind is that process that M.I.T. scholar Noam Chomsky would refer to as "manufacturing consent", a dangerous propensity which dangerously influences the perceptions of individual citizens by continually immersing the populace in an electronic stream of messages, both blatant and subliminal, that serves to condition them to a particular way of experiencing, participating, and perceiving the world around them. We find ourselves constantly bombarded by powerful and suggestive images, message-laden icons which deliver consistent themes regarding the nature of the environment we are living in, one we come to employ more and more exclusively as our preferred method of interacting in both the civil and legal aspects of contemporary society.
As Professor Gross so prophetically forecasted, the mergers of all commercial news sources, both electronic and other, have come under the ownership and control of corporate America, one of the leading edges of the power elite. Amazingly, all of this also rings a responsive chord with the single most prophetic work of fiction in the 20th century, Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World". Lost in our petty diversions and self-absorbed in a pool of trivial pursuits, we become increasingly more vulnerable to the solid wall of subliminal and other messages all conveying a message regarding he nature of the world and our social, economic, and political place in it.
As our experience with the several successful Presidents ranging from Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush, the artful use of personal charisma to cover a mean-spirited political agenda has worked amazingly well. In the twenty years since the book was originally published, many aspects of our collective socioeconomic well-being have been profoundly changed, almost exclusively to the favor of the rich and well placed and to the increasing detriment of the average man and woman on the street. The statistics available are overwhelming in detailing the levels to which ordinary citizens have been stripped of most of the socioeconomic gains of the last century. In every area of contemporary life, from the cost and extent of health coverage to the responsibility for a variety of aspects such as providing for individual retirements, the vastly expanding future tax liability, and the use of the federal treasury to provide for subsidies to corporate America, the story is the same.
Increasingly we are being manipulated into surrendering our voice in the democratic process and to playing a more limited role as consumers, which the elite evidently sees as our only crucial civic responsibility. As George W. Bush said with a booming voice and a congenial charismatic smile, post 911 Americans just had to get out to do their patriotic duty by once again buying things, to get the economy going once more. Indeed, it is becoming a brave new world. This is a wonderful book, and one that is a great, thought-provoking read. Enjoy!
The author is a former Truman administration official writing in the early 1980's. If you do not see the foreshadowing of Donald Trump on every page, then you aren't paying attention.