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What causes the Rise of the Far-Right

Since a few years we can find a similar trend in the Western European countries, where right-wing political parties find more and more attraction. Lots of people are not afraid to show their sympathy for far-right or alt-right people and organisations.

In several Christian countries, there were/are white people who made it clear there is no place for non-whites and non-Christians in their communities. There was even a 45th president of some states that wanted his people to believe that to Make America Great Again, one had to get rid of non-white people and should give priority to the conservative Christians again with their very strict rules and regulations. Racial coding of concepts like crime and welfare has been used to strategically influence public political views, in the States as well as on the European continent. Donald Trump expressed low opinions of all Black folks, from music to culture and politics, and stimulated the right-wing parties to voice their opinions against ‘non-Americans’. He spurred people on to believe their nation is sacred and should be protected from outsiders and parasites.

Also in Europe, we can find such main ideological obsession of the far right as the sacrosanct nation; hence, the myth of the ethnic purity of “our people.” This central tenet of the far right’s discourse and actions shows itself in two ways: outright rejection of non-EU immigration and, increasingly, rejection of the EU itself.

The economic crisis triggered in 2008 and the ensuing single-minded pursuit by EU and national authorities of neoliberal deficit-control and austerity measures are one key factor for the increase of popularity of right-wing political parties in Europe. Some politicians want people to believe that the refugees and Muslims are living on our society by enjoying unemployment support. Whilst the rich Jews are at the problems of the imbalance of the economic market.

Some are convinced to avoid derailment of the economics, there should be more protectionism.

The alternation between centre-right and centre-left governments offers no real alternatives in terms of economic models and the liberals are only there to make sure that their pockets shall be filled by the working class. As a result, the far-right benefits from popular disgust with a corrupt, privileged and oligopolistic political class, even as actual democracy seems powerless in the face of the untouchable large economic and financial corporations. In this regard, establishment parties are regularly accused of not representing the true people; in opposition to this, and to representative institutions as a whole, the far-right calls for direct political participation and for placing trust in more or less “charismatic” leaders able to connect with the people without intermediaries. The old “political class” is written off en masse (regardless of whether the conventional left or conventional right is in power) for its partisan cronyism and inability to solve social problems.

The right-wing politicians know how to talk to the mouths of ordinary citizens, while the politicians of the mainstream parties have become totally alienated from the ordinary people. As long as they are out of touch with the ordinary citizen, the latter does not want to know much more about them.

Cesáreo Rodríguez-Aguilera, professor of Political Science at the University of Barcelona writes

The far right embodies the worst of the European ideological tradition: exclusive nationalist essentialism, counter-Enlightenment dogmatism and political authoritarianism. Its message today is based on three core ideas: chauvinistic and ethnic exaltation of the nation; anti-immigrant xenophobia; and “anti-politician”, anti-establishment populism. In this regard, the far right offers its followers an exclusive identity, singles out the culprits (the establishment) and advocates simple and expeditious solutions (throw out the foreigners, overthrow the “political class”).

All over the world, we could see that countries are sliding away from democracy. For years now, authoritarians have been on the offensive, while liberal democratic practices have increasingly been discarded. In relations between states, conflict, coercion, and attacks on the legitimacy of key principles and institutions have proliferated at the expense of good-faith dialogue and the search for common interests.
Domestically, demagogues and dictators run roughshod over the rule of law and the separation of powers.

In several countries, we could see that their governments regard the freedoms of assembly, association, and expression as inconveniences, if not outright threats. Judicial independence, long warped by endemic corruption, is faltering in the face of abusive lawmaking. These disturbing trends, present to varying degrees everywhere in the region, are shaping the contours of a new, more violent, less democratic phase of history.

More than at any other point in the post–Cold War period, the two opposing powers Russia (from the ex-Soviet Union) and the United States are feeling they are losing power in the world and want to establish the ‘one ruler system’. The last American leader befriended the old enemy (Russia) and took care that old patterns of stability have broken up. The people of Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia can now see the threat posed to freedom and democracy by the unconstrained dictatorship looming around the corner.

In the European Union, there are people who want others to believe that ‘our Christian and Western civilisation’ is under threat and should be safeguarded. In this context, immigrants are blamed for pulling down the Christian values and for “freeloading” off the welfare state, rising crime rates (including terrorism), and even for reintroducing diseases that had been eradicated in Europe.

Many of those right-wing people who call themselves Christian forget the main rule of Christ, to show love for the neighbour. Or do they consider their neighbour is only the white Christian? Though they call themselves Christian, not many of them really believe in God, let stand the True God of Israel. Their respect for God’s creation is far to look for. What we can see is that they have placed their own individual in the first place, and everything turns around their own ‘I’ or themselves. Pity and charity are words that do not fit their ‘Christian’ right-wing vocabulary.

When looking at the industrial countries we can clearly see that civilisation is on decline. And people are also starting to feel they lose track of decent values and ethics, but they do not see how they can turn the clock back in the right direction. The majority do not see how God is the best solution to all their problems. It was within a religious framework that learning and discovery moved forward, guided by its teaching and values; held by grace. Today the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, the Most Almighty Elohim is far to look for. The focal point now has become man himself and by preference everything should turn around himself, not having to give responsibility for the deeds done.

The personal ‘I’ having gained the first place, makes that many are not interested in working at a federation or uniting with other nations. They consider the European Union the same reprehensible something like the Soviet Union where their personal rights would be violated because they have to give in to become one with other countries. Therefore, they reject any possible future political federalisation of the EU. In this regard, some far-right parties advocate leaving the EU, like UKIP managed to bring enough lies so that the majority of the British people voted for the Brexit, with all the negative consequences this entails. Others are just wanting it to dissolve (FN), and still others “shrinking it down” to a mere economic coordinator of sovereign States (PRM, NSA).

Previous elections and polls in Belgium and France have shown how dangerously close the right-wing parties have come in numbers, to the more democratic parties and are gaining ground on the whole electoral scene.

What should also worry us is how certain centre parties are feeling the heat from the right and are taking over more of their business to boost their popularity again.

Rodríguez-Aguilera says:

In this regard, the far right has managed to tilt both “moderate” conservatives and a segment of the social democrats (the French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls, is paradigmatic) towards the right. It is antithetical for European governments made up of parties from the “centre” to be toughening their asylum laws, restricting incoming immigration as much as possible, re-establishing internal border checks (in violation of the spirit of the Schengen agreement), insisting on failed and unfair socio-economic solutions, and reducing democracy to a mere façade, an empty periodic electoral ritual that does not actually make it possible to test out alternatives to the current hegemonic economic and financial policies. {The Rise of The Far Right in Europe}

The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has deprived the far right of a core pitch to voters: its dire warnings of the impact of mass immigration. Most Europeans have responded to Europe’s worst refugee crisis since the second world war with open arms. But Putin’s war could also bring the populists a major boost as the cost of sanctions against Russia starts to bite with soaring energy and food prices. Le Pen’s decision to concentrate her campaign on cost-of-living issues has already proved far-sighted.

Hungary’s self-confessedly “illiberal” leader, Viktor Orbán, was sufficiently emboldened by his election victory to declare that his brand of “Christian democratic, conservative, patriotic politics … is the future” – and to take a dig not just at “Brussels bureaucrats” but at Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, too.

Italy’s former deputy prime minister congratulated Orbán on his win in typically bombastic terms:

“Bravo Viktor! Alone against everyone, attacked by the fanatics of uniform thinking, threatened by those wanting to eradicate Europe’s Judeo-Christian roots, slandered by those wanting to eliminate values such as the family, security and freedom, you won again.”

For many, the family is what should be placed in the first place as something sacred, and everything that could endanger it should be avoided. Other religions than Christendom are often considered as endangering the family life. They also see newcomers as a danger to keeping their culture untouched.

When the Donald Trump era came to a close, many world leaders were breathing a sigh of relief, but Trump’s ideological kindred spirits – rightwing populists in office in Brazil, Hungary, Slovenia and elsewhere – are instead taking a sharp breath.

At the turn of the century, populism was a blip on the horizon of European politics. Since then, the number of Europeans voting for populist parties in national votes has surged from 7% to more than 25%, according to groundbreaking research by the Guardian. Back in 1998, only two small European countries – Switzerland and Slovakia – had populists in government. Two decades later, another nine countries do.

The number of Europeans ruled by a government with at least one populist in cabinet has increased from 12.5 million to 170 million. This has been blamed on everything from recession to migration, social media to globalisation.

The Alpine countries have already a long history of nationalist or far-right tendencies, so it does not surprise us that the exclusionist, small-government Swiss People’s party (SVP), rooted in “authentic” rural resistance to urban and foreign influence, led a referendum defeat of Switzerland’s bid to join the EEA in 1992, and has swayed national policy since.

Also for neighbouring Austria, where like in Switzerland the ‘own people’ have always stood on the first place we know that the Nazi-idea has never gone away. The Freedom party, a far more straightforward far-right movement founded by a former Nazi in 1956, won more than 20% of the vote for the first time in 1994 and is now in government, as junior coalition partner, for the fourth time.

The fear of shrinking living standards and an ‘invasion of refugees’ is a breeding ground for political growth on the right flank. Anti-establishment feelings help them too. Those who seem to revel in shocking with defiant and outspoken anti-Islam, anti-­refugee, racist and xenophobic rhetoric are people who gain popularity.
That such persons would take away the freedom of the press and the freedom of speech does not seem to worry a lot of voters for those parties. but it is a danger we should be fully aware of.

The Visegrád countries or the European Quartet that form a cultural and political alliance of four Central and Eastern European countries: the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia are governed by populist parties including Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz in Hungary – where populist parties secured 63% of the vote in this year’s elections – and Jarosław Kaczyński’s Law and Justice (PiS) in Poland.

Both parties only started showing their true colours – populist, culturally conservative, authoritarian – after they were first elected. They are now attacking core liberal institutions such as the independent judiciary and free press, increasingly defining national identities in terms of ethnicity and religion and demonising opponents, such as the Hungarian-born Jewish financier George Soros, in language reminiscent of the 1930s.

The great danger with these right-wing parties is that once they are in power, opponents and those who do not fit into their mould are quickly removed and silenced for good. In the end, they know how to establish an authoritarian or dictatorial state where everyone has to go along with their way of thinking.

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Preceding

Belgium showing signs of pre-Nazi Germany making certain people afraid to show up in public

If some of us do not feel safe

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Additional reading

  1. Hollowness of democracy
  2. What is Fascism and who are today’s Fascists?
  3. Seeds from the world creating division and separation from God
  4. Objective views and not closing eyes for certain sayings
  5. Francis Fukuyama and ‘The End of History?’
  6. Apocalyptic Extremism: No Longer a Laughing Matter
  7. U.SA. Still top destination for international migrants
  8. Social media for Trumpists and changing nature of warfare
  9. Americans their stars, pretension, God, Allah and end of times signs #1 Abrahamic religions
  10. Americans their stars, pretension, God, Allah and end of times signs #2 War on God’s Plan, Name and title
  11. Americans their stars, pretension, God, Allah and end of times signs #3 Cyberwars and prophesy
  12. Tribes Redux
  13. Swallowed in the Sea but belonging to earth
  14. Expecting the E.U. to stand in solidarity with the people of Afghanistan
  15. Conspiracy theories in plenty-fold
  16. More than seven anti-Semitic incidents in the U.S.A. per day

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