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Thread: Europe: The Rise of the Extreme Right

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    Europe: The Rise of the Extreme Right

    Rise of the Right

    The fall of parliamentary seats into extremist hands represents the biggest shake-up on the continent since the disappearance of communism.

    Sweden has revealed the future direction of Europe, and not for the first time. For decades, Sweden led the way in defining the mixed model of free trade and social solidarity that became the European ideal. Not anymore. In the election this month Swedish voters joined their less successful EU neighbors in turning their backs on traditional politics, in which the pendulum swung between parties advocating more free trade and parties on the center left advocating more solidarity—but no further. Now even the solid Swedes have ushered in to Parliament a block of single-issue politicians obsessed with the perceived loss of national identity and angry about immigrants and other outsiders who supposedly threaten their Swedishness.

    Thus the arrival of a new politics in Europe. A decade ago extremist politics was confined to fringes and street protests. It has now arrived as a parliamentary force and is beginning to change how other parties behave and speak. The binary politics between a Christian democratic right and social democratic left, with a small space for classic liberal parties, is now over. The world’s biggest democratic region, the 46 nation-states grouped in the Council of Europe, is now giving birth to a centrifugal politics with identity replacing class alignment. No single party or political formation can win control of the state and govern on the basis of a manifesto with majority support from voters. Even Britain requires a coalition to have a majority in the House of Commons. Belgium and the Netherlands still have not formed governments months after elections produced inconclusive results.

    Postwar Europe had one great foe and one great friend to produce unity of political purpose, even if big parties battled over priorities. Social and Christian democrats were united against sovietism and Moscow’s proxy parties on the communist left. The United States allied itself to the moderate right and left to create NATO, support the suppression of nationalisms with the creation of the European Union, and wean Europeans away from protectionist economics in favor of open trade and competitive markets.

    Now Europe no longer faces an agreed common threat, despite the best efforts of an Islamaphobe right to present Muslims as an alien invading force that must be confronted and contained. Nor is the United States an inspiration any longer. Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama have been quagmired in their respective wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, from which most Europeans recoil with dismay. The recession and banking crisis are blamed on unregulated American free markets. Even the business minister for David Cameron’s new Conservative government, Vince Cable, was heard lashing out at the evils of capitalism and the “murky world” of corporate behavior at his party conference this month in Liverpool.

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    Die Sonne scheint noch.

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    Both left and right winged are two sides of the same coin from the time of the French revolution, i see both sides selling out Europe.

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    Supporting the suppression of nationalisms is one reason we are in such a dire situation today.

    Nationalism is still like a dirty word

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    We need a new radical nationalism for the 21st century that ignores the old fashioned labels of Left & Right. The Question is - how to go about this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Berrocscir View Post
    We need a new radical nationalism for the 21st century that ignores the old fashioned labels of Left & Right. The Question is - how to go about this.
    Yes, I think so too. I would add more to this post but that is exactly the question - how to go about this.

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    Frustrating, yes! One possible way is to set up networks (economic, cultural and social) that can show people that it is possible to live life closer to to nationalist principles - co-operatives, keeping money amongst ourselves, self-sufficiency - social/cultural events & informal associations. That kind of thing. An organic movement where an organisation that can express our political beliefs can hopefully spring from...maybe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Berrocscir View Post
    Frustrating, yes! One possible way is to set up networks (economic, cultural and social) that can show people that it is possible to live life closer to to nationalist principles - co-operatives, keeping money amongst ourselves, self-sufficiency - social/cultural events & informal associations. That kind of thing. An organic movement where an organisation that can express our political beliefs can hopefully spring from...maybe
    "Organic" is crucial terminology, for a variety of reasons. Localised self-sufficiency and the revive of community spirit, preservation of the natural landscape and so on and so forth, as examples amongst many, are all significant to the reatribution of self worth and, ultimately, to the process of self relisation, further, they are all 'organic' in their nature. These things, I think, are important to any sort of realistic 'reawakening' in Europe. The two primary problems in regards to such a thing manifest in the form of "how to go about things" and population growth and urbanisation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Berrocscir View Post
    We need a new radical nationalism for the 21st century that ignores the old fashioned labels of Left & Right. The Question is - how to go about this.
    I think conflict between economic "left" and "right" will always be there, but it seems that nationalism may slowly be coming back. The comments of Merkel, Seehofer, and Sarrazin in Germany...Geert Wilders in the Netherlands...The Swedish elections...the Tea Party in the U.S.

    I think the goal now is to carefully cultivate this nationalism, allowing it to become more and more 'mainstream'. I liken it to sneaking past someone who is sleeping without waking them up. One false move and we could be back to multicultural liberalism.

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