Hillary Clinton is the leading member of a generational cohort of elite liberals who brought fascist themes into mainstream liberalism. She and her cohort embody the maternal side of fascism—which is one reason why it is not more clearly recognized as such.
Hillary Clinton is conventionally viewed by her supporters as a liberal—or by conservative opponents as a radical leftist in liberal sheep’s clothing; but it is more accurate to view her as an old-style progressive and a direct descendant of the Social Gospel movement of the 1920s and 1930s.
Hillary increasingly draped herself in the rhetoric of the movement—the youth movement, the women’s movement, the antiwar movement—and gravitated toward others who believed that both her generation and her gender had a rendezvous with destiny.
After graduation from college, Hillary was offered an internship by her hero Saul Alinsky—famed author of Rules for Radicals—about whom she wrote her thesis: “There is Only the Fight: An Analysis of the Alinsky Model.” In an unprecedented move, Wellesley College sequestered the thesis in 1992, even refusing to divulge the title until the Clintons left the White House.
Alinsky would invent his famous “method” of community organizing, borrowing tactics from Al Capone’s mobsters, University of Chicago sociologists and John L. Lewis’s union organizers. His violent, confrontational rhetoric often sounded much like that heard from Horst Wessel or his Red Shirt adversaries in the streets of Berlin. Alinsky joined forces with the CIO—then chockablock with Stalinists and other communists—learning how to organize in the streets. In 1940, he founded the Industrial Areas Foundation, which pioneered the community activism movement. He became the mentor to countless communist activists—most famously Cesar Chavez—laying the foundation for both Naderism and the Students for a Democratic Society.
Alinsky believed in exploiting middle-class mores to achieve his agenda, not flouting them as the long-haired hippies did. Alinsky believed that working through friendly or vulnerable institutions in order to smash enemy redoubts was the essence of political organization. He worked closely with reformist and left-leaning clergy, his chief patrons. He mastered the art of unleashing preachers as the frontline activists in his mission of “rubbing raw the sores of discontent.”
Alinsky’s methods inspired the entire 1960s generation of New Left agitators (Barack Obama, for years a Chicago community organizer, was trained by Alinsky’s disciples).
Hillary turned down Alinsky’s job offer in order to attend Yale Law School. He told her it was a huge mistake, but Hillary responded that only by marching through America’s elite institutions could she achieve real power and change the system from within. Hillary helped edit the Yale Review of Law and Social Action, which at the time was a thoroughly radical organ supporting the Black Panthers and publishing articles implicitly endorsing the murder of police. One article, “Jamestown Seventy,” suggested that radicals adopt a program of “political migration to a single state for the purpose of gaining political control and establishing a living laboratory for experiment.” An infamous Review cover depicted police as pigs, one with his head chopped off.
Hillary volunteered to help the Panthers’ legal team, even attending the trial to take notes to help with the defense. She did such a good job of organizing the student volunteers that she was offered a summer internship in the Berkeley, California law offices of Robert Treuhaft, one of Bobby Seale’s lawyers. Treuhaft was a lifetime member of the American Communist Party who had cut his teeth fighting for the Stalinist faction in the California labor movement.
The most revealing aspect of Hillary’s career prior to her arrival in Washington was her advocacy for children. Clinton wrote articles advocating the rights of children to “divorce” their parents. Hillary Clinton’s writings on children show a clear, unapologetic and principled desire to insert the state deep into family life—a goal that is in perfect accord with similar efforts by totalitarians of the past. She condones the state’s assumption of parental responsibilities because she is opposed to the principle of parental authority in any form. Clinton’s writings leave the unmistakable impression that it is the family that holds children back, the state that sets them free.
Selections from “Liberal Fascism,” by Jonah Goldberg (Brave New Village chapter)