Sometime circa late July, as the hundreds of thousands of de facto vassals that cater to the needs of New York City’s simulated aristocracy were navigating the sweltering hell that subway system has recently become, approximately one hundred miles to the east, deep in the heart of Resistance territory, where villas rent for up to a million a month, members of the notorious Bridgehampton Cell of the Neoliberal Liberation Army were gathered in one of their luxury safehouses, vetting the latest leading candidate for the coveted position of “resistance leader.”
California Senator Kamala Harris, multimillionaire woman of the people, and friend of rapacious banks like OneWest, must have impressed the Bridgehampton Cell, because their comrades in corporate-owned media immediately launched a propaganda campaign to get the word out to the American people (who’ve been suffering under occupation for going on the last seven months) that the Senator and her affluent backers represent their last best hope of overthrowing the Trumpian Reich and saving the world from the Putin-Nazis.
For those unfamiliar with the Putin-Nazis, it’s an official term I recently made up to describe, not just the Russian Federation, and Vladimir Putin and his inner circle, but also the maleficent global alliance of Russian hackers, Russian propagandists, Russian diplomats, Russian businesspersons, persons married to Russian persons, persons with Russian-sounding names, neo-Nazis, alt-right geeks, Goldman Sachs guys, Sandernistas, Corbynistas, former coal miners, hillbilly oxycodone addicts, socialists, anarchists, Black Lives Matterists, the ghost of George Carlin, the ACLU, and anyone who has ever retweeted Wikileaks or didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton.
As I’m sure you’ll recall, the Putin-Nazis originally materialized out of thin air around the time that Clinton was managing to lose the US presidential election to a repulsive, jabbering, narcissistic clown with absolutely no political experience, who the mainstream media had been assuring the world for months was the Second Coming of Hitler. Given that it was virtually impossible for Clinton to lose to such a noxious buffoon, the only rational explanation was that the Russians had somehow “hacked” the election, or “interfered with,” or “influenced” the election. They had done this by getting their hands on a batch of internal Democratic Party emails, passing them on to Putin-Nazi Propaganda Minister Julian Assange, who published them on the Internet, where they were read by former Obama-voters, who were so completely shocked by their contents that they decided not to vote for Clinton, as they had obviously been intending to do, until their minds got “interfered with.”
The rest, as they say, is history. On January 20, despite the fact that everyone knew that the entire Trump family were Putin-Nazi “sleeper” agents, and that the man himself was the Glorious Leader of an underground army of neo-Nazis numbering in the tens of hundreds that was threatening the very fabric of democracy by circulating cartoon frogs on the Internet, Donald J. Trump was sworn in as President, and the Trumpian Reich officially began.
Fortunately, Americans are not a bunch of Camembert-slurping surrender monkeys. Although the ruling establishment was bound by law to allow a neo-fascist dictator who was clearly working for a hostile foreign power to move his circus into the White House, they were hardly going to sit idly by and watch as he transformed America into some sort of neo-nationalist dystopia where grade-school children would be forced to learn Russian, Hitler-salute the confederate flag, and whatever other Russo-Nazi horrors he and Bannon had in mind. Before Trump could even order the removal of every likeness of Martin Luther King from the D.C. metropolitan area, the Democratic Party, patriotic Republicans, the Intelligence Community, the corporate-owned media, and, of course, just millions of Good Americans launched a grassroots resistance movement to remove him from office by any means necessary.
Seven months later, here we are, with a Special Counsel and a D.C. grand jury, who will certainly be able to find something on Trump, or at least ensure that he spends the rest of his term denying the stream of allegations, rumors, and leaks that will flow therefrom. Which means it’s time to start getting ready for the day when our national nightmare is over, and Kamala Harris (or whichever loyal figurehead the ruling classes ultimately choose) marches through Washington like Charles de Gaulle, presumably with the Obamas and Clintons in tow, after which the USA can continue to bomb, occupy, sanction, and otherwise destabilize various other countries, allow its banks to debt-enslave its citizens, maintain a brutal, militarized police force, and everything else it’s doing at the moment, but in a normal, liberal, non-fascist manner, and Stephen Colbert can get back to comedy.
Now, to pull this off, the Resistance is going to need to deal with these Putin-Nazis, specifically the Putin-Nazis on the Left, who are already tweeting “fake news” tweets impugning the character of Senator Harris (who happens to be black, and a woman, by the way … not that that has anything to do with anything, of course), and reminding Americans how they got bamboozled by Obama’s Hope-and-Change routine. These people need to be de-Putin-Nazified, and they need to be de-Putin-Nazified immediately. The last thing the Resistance needs at this point is to go through all the trouble of regime-changing Trump, only to have Americans elect some other non-vetted, narcissistic billionaire who thinks it might be fun to run for president.
This de-Putin-Nazification Program is going to involve a concerted effort on the part of the entire neoliberal establishment to stigmatize anyone who voted for Trump, or who didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton, or who questions the integrity of Kamala Harris (who, as I may have already mentioned, is black), as a bug-eyed, Sieg-heiling Putin-Nazi. These people are going to need to be shamed, guilt-tripped, and otherwise emotionally manipulated into keeping their Putin-Nazi mouths shut. This isn’t going to work on your actual fascists, but it will work on nearly everyone else, or at least on those Obama voters who didn’t turn out for Hillary Clinton, and those bitter white Bernie Bros who voted for Trump as personal “fuck you” to the Democratic Party.
See, odd as this is going to sound, the majority of your Putin-Nazis don’t see themselves as Putin-Nazis. They see themselves, well, as just regular Americans who have lost all faith in the electoral system, and who believe they are living in a sham republic controlled by global corporations and obscenely wealthy individuals who couldn’t care less about them and their families, and whose only allegiance is to a transnational class of corporatist leeches like themselves. Still, despite their cynical beliefs, most of these folks are not particularly fond of being likened to Nazis, or racists, or xenophobes, or useful idiots. So this is exactly what the Resistance is doing, and intends to keep doing for the next few years (i.e., calling their detractors bad names, basically), so that any anti-corporatist dissent that they can’t get Google to make disappear with an “anti-fake news algorithm” can be stigmatized as racist, misogynist, or some other variation of “deplorable.”
Now, they need our help to make this work (yes, even CounterPunch readers can contribute to this vital effort). Don’t worry about the Russia hysteria. The corporate-owned media will take care of that. You want to focus on the fascism aspect, and the racism, misogyny, and xenophobia stuff, which is always the best way to silence other leftists. Here are a few simple things you can do.
(1) Exaggerate the neo-fascist threat! You can do this on Twitter and Facebook endlessly. Forget about the fact that the number of actual fascists in America is ridiculously small, and that odds of some sort of fascist takeover of the US government are infinitesimal. Convince your friends and Twitter followers that the fascists are on the verge of launching a national fascist revolution. Tweet about their “leaders” as if they were actual players on the national political stage, and not just a handful of pathetic creeps parading around in their Hitler hairdos for two or three hundred other such creeps. The point here is to help the Resistance keep folks’ attention focused on “the fascists,” and the racists, misogynists, xenophobes, et al., and not on the global capitalist elites and the vast transnational corporations that currently control most Western governments.
(2) Hammer the identity politics! Do not miss an opportunity to call out anyone who accidentally writes, speaks, or otherwise disseminates a word or phrase that oppresses anyone, or that displays any type of unacknowledged privilege. Not only will this help the Resistance keep folks divided into an ever-increasing number of powerless little sub-groups that pose no threat to the corporatist ruling classes, it will feel really good to self-righteously hector anyone whose values are different from yours, especially members of the working classes who couldn’t afford to go to university and learn about intersectionality, and so on. These folks are virtually fascists anyway. What difference does it make if you alienate them?
(3) Now, this one is absolutely crucial. Keep comparing Trump to Hitler! If you don’t have time for the other two, at least you can help the Resistance with this one. See, it’s really important that folks believe that Trump is not just a random bozo who rode a wave of populist anger and distrust of the Democrats into the White House, and who is now in the process of being neutralized by the people who actually run the country. He needs to be seen as a powerful dictator, who at any moment is liable to start … well, you know, killing the Jews, or something. Plus, this dovetails with the other two points. Exaggerating the fascist threat works much better when you have a powerful Hitler figure you can wag your finger at. And, given that Trump is actually a bigot, and a misogynist pig, and a xenophobe (or at least he plays one on TV), you can have a field day with the identity politics. So go hard on the Hitler stuff, and any kind of German references you can think of. Spell his name “Drumpf,” or call him “Herr Trump,” or put a little Hitler-mustache on him. Don’t worry about getting chastised by any intersectionalist purity freaks. These kinds of slurs are perfectly acceptable, because, as every Good American knows, the Germans are, and will always be, Nazis.
These are just a few ideas to get started with. I’m sure you can think up some more on your own. The main thing is to steer well clear of any kind of political analysis that reminds folks about that corporatocracy, or how much it costs to get elected to office, and where the majority of that money comes from, and thus how irrelevant electoral politics is.
Oh, and keep an eye out for those Putin-Nazis! You never know where they’re going to turn up, and I’d hate to see your mind get “interfered with.”
C. J. Hopkins is an award-winning American playwright, novelist and satirist based in Berlin. His plays are published by Bloomsbury Publishing (UK) and Broadway Play Publishing (USA). His debut novel, ZONE 23, is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant. He can reached at cjhopkins.com or consentfactory.org.