Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The game that's fundi to play

The right wing wind machine has been working hard at forging the recent Osama tape into a weapon to bludgeon those of us on the side of truth and justice and (to be redundant) against the Bush junta.

The Bush-approved lexicon uses the word islamo-fascist to describe those of Osama’s ilk. Despite the fact that those right wingers are full of shit and know it when they accuse the left of wanting anything like Osama’s beliefs anywhere near this continent. But we still must deal with that awkward term islamo-fasctist. It isn’t that it isn’t fitting. Even though technically fascism is corporatism with a catchy name (according to the coiner Benito Mussolini), Hitler refined the concept and gave us the notion of fascism that we know today. So, in the vernacular sense islamo-fascist describes Osama pretty well.

But you know that term just doesn’t do it: Islamo-fascism. It sounds like stuff you want to get out of your mouth as quickly as possible despite the fact that you know that the thick white ooze that’s left on your chin will be wicked gross in the mirror.

So let’s instead look at what Osama believes and go from there.

For one thing he believes in the return of the Caliphate – a semi-mythical time in Islam when one person wielded both secular and religious power and spoke for God (or so he said).

And then there is Osama's belief that the Koran speaks for all situations and all times in its exact words. No interpretation. No changing with all the things God might not have mentioned because humanity didn’t know about it back in 600 A.D.

And there is his fundamental belief in the wickedness of humanity. Woman must be suppressed to control their wiles. Men are so weak they cannot be made responsible in the face of unrestrained women who are free to behave as equals with the weenie men.

So there is Osama and his followers and many others apparently in Islam who are less lethal but just as rabid in their fundamentalist beliefs. And also there is the word that best describes Osama’s approach to Islam: fundamentalist. So to abstract we have a fundamentalist fascist or to coin a term: a Fundi-fascist.

Unlike some who sling the term islamo-fascist around like so much hash, I am not anti-Islamic and the beauty of a term like Fundi-fascism is that it doesn’t describe any particular creed. What it describes is, 1: a belief in a golden age when everything was better because fundi-fascism was the defacto law of the land. 2: the scripture of the fundi-fascist’s choice is to be taken literally – more particularly that is, literally according to the fundi-fascist who is doing the interpreting, and 3: People are fundamentally (there’s that word again) weak and wicked and cannot be allowed to take responsibility for themselves.

So there we have an abstraction: fundi-fascism. For any good abstraction to be successful, it must be applicable to entities other than that which was used to derive the abstraction.

I will leave it as an exercise for the reader to see if there are other instances of this abstraction.

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