The following text is being presented in commemoration of Sir Oswald Mosley’s 136th birthday. — Ed.
Foreword by Beau Albrecht
The question of “What is fascism?” will tend to get quite a few answers! And unfortunately, many who do answer will be badly-informed. Is fascism authoritarianism for the sake of authoritarianism? Is it all about oppressing the black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOX)? To get accurate answers, it’s helpful to go to the fascists themselves. For example, as Corneliu Codreanu put it:
Fascism means first of all defending your nation against the dangers that threaten it. It means the destruction of these dangers and the opening of a free way to life and glory for your nation.
That’s quite good for a capsule summary. Of course, it’s helpful to have some additional details. There are some common themes across the various types of fascism, though its implementation varies according to time and place. This is by design, as it avoids the problems common to certain Leftist “one size fits all” ideologies.
To take a specific example, there was a party program for the British Union of Fascists by Sir Oswald Mosley, originally published in the first issue of the Union’s periodical Fascist Week in November 1933. The present version of the text is taken from its subsequent publication as a booklet entitled Blackshirt Policy: A Brief Statement of the Policy of the British Union of Fascists. This 75-page booklet is an extremely rare document today.
One thing to note is that, unlike what some nowadays will assume, the term “corporate state” in the context used herein has nothing to do with gigantic business entities running the government. (That type of arrangement is what we already have, informally, with globalism.) The “corporate state means tripartism when spoken of by Mosley and Benito Mussolini. In this context, a “corporation” is a cooperative representative body for a specific enterprise, including delegates from labor, management, and government.
REVOLUTION OF THE NATION
FASCISM WILL END PARTY WARFARE
The Test of the Modern Age
In this book, I will try to explain the meaning of Fascism in Britain to readers who study our case for the first time. It is necessary first to realise that Fascism is a new world idea. It is not just a new political party intervening in present Party strife with a new political programme. On the contrary, Fascism challenges all existing parties and combats the whole present system with a new and revolutionary conception, not only of government and of economics, but of life itself.
It is for this reason that Fascism, when it first appears, so fiercely divides the minds and spirits of men and evokes on the one hand such passionate devotion, and on the other such bitter animosity.
The Spirit of Sacrifice
Fascism comes to politics with the force of a new religion, and draws from its adherents a spirit of sacrifice and self-abnegation in the cause, the force of which triumphs over all material things. No one understands Fascism who does not realise that it represents above all a new spirit of service, a new morality, and a new attitude to life. It is the embodied and organised determination of young manhood to rescue great nations from decadence, and to march forward to a higher and a nobler order of civilisation.
Such a creed has no concern with the huckstering of the political market-place. Fascism comes, not to participate in Party strife, but to end Party strife and to sink the quarrel of factions in a new national unity. The nation and the interest of the community as a whole stand above every interest and section within the State. The personal interest of individual or of faction is subordinate to the over-riding interest of the nation. Within the limits of the national welfare, all individual enterprise and liberty is not only permitted, but encouraged; but the activity and interest of the individual must coincide and not conflict with the activity and interest of the nation.
A New Morality
We seek, in fact, to establish a new morality of service to the nation. The winning of a system so opposed to that which prevails to-day of course means a revolutionary change. But Fascist revolution is a national revolution not the struggle of class or of faction for mastery. For the first time revolution is combined with patriotism. We join a love of King and Country with the determination to build a country so great that it is worthy of that love.
Hitherto, revolution has been associated with a flabby internationalism which loved every country but its own. Patriotism, on the other hand, has been associated with reaction, and with a stand-pat resistance to change in an age which demands change if Britain is to live and to be great.
Love of Country
We hold that true patriotism combines love of country with a relentless determination to bring revolutionary changes which shall adapt modern Britain to modern fact. We seek revolutionary changes by legal and constitutional means, with the willing consent of the people declared at a General Election. In fact we invite Great Britain to act and to advance into a new civilisation with her eyes open to reality, as becomes a great nation.
Fascism alone can bring the changes which are necessary in the modern age, because Fascism alone employs the methods by which orderly changes can be secured. Hitherto, progress and all the dynamic urge to change which present suffering evokes in generous and constructive minds have been in the hands of people whose methods invariably defeat progress and lead to chaos. Socialism has stood for progress, but has employed methods which prevent progress. It has reposed its faith in the interminable discussion of talkative committees where decision is impossible.
All the great instruments of action, such as leadership authority, discipline, loyalty, have been derided and rejected by Socialism. Individual responsibility has been destroyed and leadership has skulked behind the irresponsible indecision of verbose and quarrelsome committees. The whole Socialist conception of Party and of Government has been so designed that by no possible chance can any man on any occasion ever take a decision and act.
As a result, Socialism, in practice, has consisted of promises in Opposition and of betrayal and flight from responsibility in Government. Conservatism, on the other hand, has adopted some of the executive instruments, such as loyalty and a measure of discipline. But it has used these great instruments, not to secure reform, but to resist reform. It has sought to secure the stability of the State by resisting changes in an age which demands great changes if the State is not to collapse in ruin or in degeneration. Conservatives have resisted all changes which are necessary in the present system in accordance with their tradition of lethargy, and in obedience to the alien financial interests which dominate their Party and which thrive on the present decadence of the State.
So Socialism has failed the nation because in seeking progress it has adopted methods which lead to chaos; Conservatism, on the other hand, by resisting change when change was necessary, has led the country to the same result.
The Essence of Fascism
Fascism combines the great principles of life and action in a new and dynamic creed of the modern age. Fascism stands for revolutionary change, but it employs the instruments by which the necessary changes can be effected with order and authority. Leadership, loyalty, discipline, decision are the great instruments by which Fascism will carry through the changes that shall end poverty and suffering and lift Great Britain to a pinnacle among the nations. Fascism, like all the faiths of the past, is common to all nations, but in Britain it shall find its highest expression and development, because it is more naturally adapted to Britain than to any other country.
The essence of Fascism is team-work, the power to pull together and to sink individual interest in the common cause of the nation. These same qualities have been the essence of the British character in every great moment of its destiny. Fascism comes to Britain in an hour of decadence and of surrender, to evoke once more the great inspirations of the British spirit which have led through adversity to triumph in every great period of our history, and which shall not fail us now, in the supreme test of the modern age.
STEEL CREED OF AN IRON AGE
LEADERSHIP AND DICTATORSHIP
Building a New Civilisation
FASCISM is denounced as dictatorship; we do not fear that word. Fascism is not dictatorship in the old sense of the word, which implies government against the will of the people. Fascism is dictatorship in the modern sense of the word, which implies government armed by the people with power to conquer problems which must be overcome if the nation is to live.
We seek power by legal and constitutional means; we shall ask the nation at a General Election deliberately to confer upon Fascist government full power of action. To represent this as dictatorship against the will of the people is, of course, a childish travesty of the facts. Fascism offers a leadership of the people, with their willing consent towards that action by government which they have so long demanded.
Power to Act
The first act of a Fascist Parliament will be to confer upon Government complete power of action by order. M.P.s will no longer be employed in hanging about the lobbies of the House of Commons, gossiping and intriguing in the smoke-room and obstructing the nation’s business by endless and irrelevant discussion in the Chamber. Fascist M.P.s will be the spearheads of the Government’s drive to action in carrying through executive measures in their own localities and constituencies.
When Parliament is called together at regular intervals, they will thus be armed with facts acquired, not in the idle chatter of the lobbies, but by hard work in the country. Their suggestions to the Government and their constructive criticism of its work will thus be based on knowledge gained by active co-operation in national action. The Parliamentary system, in fact, will immediately be transformed from a system which produces windbags to a system which produces men of action.
A Greater Liberty
Such a system is dictatorship in the sense that Government has the power to act, but it is not dictatorship in the sense that the people are overridden and oppressed. Without such dictatorship or power of action, how can anything be done? At present only two or three main measures can be carried through Parliament in the course of a year. We Fascists believe that nothing short of a new civilisation can meet the present situation.
How can we even begin to build that civilisation within the endless discussion and indecision of the present parliamentary system ? They say that our new system means the end of liberty. By that they mean the liberty of a few old men to talk for ever while the nation perishes. Fascism declares there Is a greater liberty than the liberty to talk. That liberty is the right of a great nation to live and to be great again.
The people have been misled for years past by the illusion of political and parliamentary liberty. They begin to realise that only economic liberty brings real freedom. That economic liberty consists of things which really affect the lives of the people, such as good wages, good houses to live in, short hours of labour, after which home and leisure can be enjoyed with family and friends.
These things comprise the real liberty. But they cannot be won except by a Government which has the power to act. No Government can have the power to act until the reign of talk has come to an end. Economic chaos cannot be ended until talk has ended. The nation must choose between the liberty of millions to live a full life, and the liberty of a few old men to advertise themselves in the futility of parliamentary debate.
We therefore claim that in our new system we shall exchange the “false liberty” of the few for the “real liberty” of the many. Even certain sections of the Labour party now begin to recognise that nothing can be achieved through the present parliamentary system; so they adopt the proposal of an Emergency Powers Act, which I first advanced to the House of Commons nearly three years ago as a first pale shadow of present Fascist policy.
On the Caucus Swings
Now, in a manner typical of Socialist intellectuals, they seek to curtail discussion ln one sphere, but to nullify any possible good effects by increasing discussion in another and more vicious sphere. On the one hand they propose to cut down parliamentary debate; on the other hand they propose to have full discussion of every Government measure within the Party caucus. The main actions of Government are not only all to be referred to Cabinet and Parliamentary Party, but also to the Trade Union Congress and Labour Party caucus. So what they gain ln time on the Parliamentary roundabout they will lose, and more, on the caucus swings.
The ordinary man will say that it is better to have the nation’s business obstructed (if it must be obstructed) in Parliament by those whom the nation has at least elected than to have it obstructed in a party caucus over which the nation has no control at all. In fact, if talk must continue to rule, it is better that it should rule in Parliament than in the endless mothers’ meetings of the Labour party caucus.
Therefore, while Fascism acknowledges the tribute of this very feeble imitation of certain of our early proposals by a section of the Labour party, it replies that the object of expediting public business will not be secured by their policy. They serve only to emphasise the almost universal recognition of the fact that the present parliamentary system is out of date and has broken down.
Fascism alone meets this fact with realism and courage because it does not shrink from empty taunts of dictatorship and is prepared openly to defend before the people the power which it demands as necessary to meet the problems which confront the nation. But something more is necessary than the taking of power on paper to deal with present problems.
It is necessary to have behind Government an instrument of steel, tested and tried in the ordeal of struggle and sacrifice, which will neither bend nor break in national emergency. Such an instrument means Fascism, for it can never come from those organisations of old women, tea-fights, conferences and compromises of which the old Parties consist.
The committee systems by which the old Parties are governed ensure but one result. No man on any occasion can ever come to a decision and take action. Behind the interminable debates of irresponsible committees, leadership shelters from responsibility and decision. In leadership the type is produced which is adept at lobbying and logrolling, at intrigue and compromise, but which is incapable of action and decision.
No man can do nothing but talk for the first sixty years of his life, and then, at an advanced age, suddenly acquire the habit of action and decision in government.
The present system, not only by its whole structure and methods, makes action impossible; more than that, It produces a type of man to whom action and decision are impossible even if he had the power.
The Turbulent Age
Our young, hard Fascism springs from the hard facts of a testing and turbulent age. It brings not only a new philosophy of life and a new structure of government; it brings also a new type of manhood to government. Fascism is born and comes to power after a tough struggle to convert the streets, in face of every material force of money, Press and vested interest.
The test of Fascist leadership and the test of a Fascist movement is the test of reality, for it is the struggle which precedes its triumph. Fascism comes to power through the fiery ordeal of sacrifice and struggle, in challenge to all existing things. The men and the system who march through such odds to power will be made of different stuff from the men and the systems of the past.
That is our guarantee to the nation that Fascism will be different from the creeds that have gone before. Fascism is first tested in the fires of reality, and nothing but the purest and strongest metal can survive those flames. From them emerges “the steel creed of an iron age.”
SPIRIT OF THE “BLACKSHIRTS”
PASSIONATE IDEAL OF NATIONAL SERVICE
IN the last chapter I dealt with the measures by which Fascism would immediately transform Parliament from a talkshop into a workshop. The first essential is to secure an executive and administrative machine by which things can be done. Any such machinery, however, would be useless without the spirit and driving purpose of a Fascist movement behind it. “Man cannot live by bread alone” and Government cannot live by machinery alone. Again and again in the post-war world, Old Gang Governments have been armed with dictatorial powers by Parliaments or electorates.
They have invariably failed because they were not animated by the spirit and method of Fascism, and had not behind them an organised Fascist movement. Consequently, in the end they always make way for the organised Fascist reality which has consciously and deliberately been prepared in advance for a situation which only Fascism can meet.
President Roosevelt is the latest old-world politician to attempt “Fascism without Fascists.” He is armed with the dictatorial powers which are anathema to our old Parties and is confronted with a much simpler problem than our own, because America is a far larger country which already is nearly self-contained. Yet despite his power and his opportunity he has been baffled again and again by vested Interests, because he has not behind him the power of a Fascist Movement in the application of a policy which is essentially Fascist. Similar attempts in the more difficult conditions of Europe have invariably failed despite the investment of Old Gang Governments with dictatorial powers.
Thus Fascism depends on the preliminary creation of an organised Fascist movement, different, not only in its method and structure, but different in its fundamental philosophy and spirit, from the movements of the old world which it displaces. It is this fundamental challenge of the spirit of Fascism which arouses such hitter antagonism from the old men and the old systems.
From its first appearance it spells their doom and also the doom of all that they hold dear, so they resist it with a despairing and unwonted energy. No attack is too low, and no misrepresentation too gross, to trip and to throw the new young giant whose shadow looms with destructive menace over the ramshackle dwellings of the old Parties.
It is fear which evokes such furious resentment in the Conservative Press, beginning in boycott and ridicule which soon fade into bitter abuse. It is this fear which drives old trade union leaders of the Bromley type into verbal excesses which would be laughable if they did not lash their dupes of the Socialist rank and file into a partisan fury which produces violence and bloodshed on the street. These incidents are not surprising when “responsible” leaders of Labour use language such as the following: “Every Blackshirt who stands in the street to-day is a menace not only to the honour of women, but to their disfigurement and maltreatment in the brutal dungeons they will create to the absolute exclusion of the slightest respect for sex.” — Daily Herald report of Mr. Bromley’s speech at the Trade Union Congress.
Pretty language from the lips of a sycophant of the Soviet to be directed against an organisation which includes ex-servicemen who fought for the homes and women of Britain, together with the flower of the nation’s young manhood, who are animated by the same passionate ideal of service to country!
For these are the men who have had the courage to wear the Blackshirt on the streets of our great cities, and by their struggle and sacrifice have achieved, in the first year of Fascism in Britain, the greatest advance which Fascism has made in so short a period in any country in the world.
Symbol of Service
Only a small proportion of our members wear the Blackshirt, for it is not compulsory, and the majority, for reasons of time, of business, and also of victimisation, are unable to wear it. Nevertheless, it is the wearing of the Blackshirt and the spirit of those who wear it which have been by far the biggest factors in the early success of Fascism. The Blackshirt is to us the symbol of service to and love of country; it is the emblem of men and women who are not afraid to stand up before all the world and to proclaim their faith. Throughout modern Europe it has become the outward expression of manhood banded together in the iron resolve to save great nations from degeneration and decay.
Beyond the supreme value of this symbol of faith, there are many practical reasons for wearing the Blackshirt. It brings down one of the great barriers of class by removing differences of dress, and one of the objects of Fascism is to break the barriers of class. Already the Blackshirt has achieved within our own ranks that classless unity which we will ultimately secure within the nation as a whole.
Again, the Blackshirt is necessary for the very practical reason that it enables us to distinguish friend from foe in the fights which Red violence forces upon us. Blackshirts already have to their credit in many areas the breaking of the Red terror which has dominated the streets of our great cities for many years past.
Free speech, and even the holding of free opinion practically ceased to exist in large tracts of Britain under this democracy which claims free speech and free opinion as the one virtue to set against that chronic paralysis of government to which it leads. In theory, speech and opinion had been free, but in practice, organised bands of Red violence had brought it to an end in many big cities. Even the leaders of the old Parties crept under police protection into the back doors of carefully ticketed meetings of their own supporters who were already converted to their cause.
An open meeting usually produced organised uproar, only terminated by the arrival of the police, which also terminated the meeting in hopeless confusion. The difficulty of allocating responsibility owing to the careful concealment of the real instigators of the trouble, and the triviality of the penalty incurred by such disturbances, nearly always meant that the organised break-up of meetings could proceed with impunity.
Against organised civil disturbance, with those really responsible skulking in the background, the police and normal instruments of government are always powerless, and Britain has proved no exception to this universal experience of post-war Europe. The fact that the inhabitants of the small area which stretches from Mayfair to Fleet Street were entirely ignorant of these events in no way diminished the seriousness of the. situation in the great industrial cities of the Midlands and the North.
This organised Red violence has been met and defeated by the Blackshirts of the Fascist Defence Force all over the country. If Britain owed nothing else to Fascism,it already owes gratitude for this sharp check to the Red bully of the streets. We did not organise to meet this threat until again and again our meetings had been attacked, and not only our meetings, but also those of any British citizen whose view was not acceptable to the Moscow mob. Our Defence Force has never been used aggressively against the meetings of other parties; its work has been entirely confined to defence. So far from promoting disorder, it has produced order in areas where an orderly public meeting was practically unknown.
We are never now attacked when Blackshirts are present in strong force. It is only against isolated detachments of our men that the knights of the razor, the broken bottle and the glass-filled potato emerge from their ghettoes. Our big public meetings are now peaceful and orderly, but the subtler underground work of Red intimidation on the streets still goes on. Here Red terrorism varies from physical violence to social and industrial boycott, and against it the Blackshirts struggle, in places hitherto unpenetrated by the opponents of Socialism, for mastery of the mind and spirit on the streets of our great cities.
Fearlessly and Openly
The work of the Blackshirts goes on fearlessly and openly, from the reddest area of the streets to the most Conservative districts of the countryside, where the farmer struggles against the oppressor.
In challenge to all existing forces of decadence, surrender and collapse, the young manhood of the Blackshirts marches forward with calm and orderly resolution. In such struggle, indeed, is forged the instrument of steel which shall well serve Britain in the days to come. In such struggle, men are found, and the spirit is born that shall not bend or break in the dark hours of a nation’s danger.
Thus have been created all the great determinist forces of history in the actuality of struggle, of danger and of arduous achievement. Thus also have been created all the great realities of British history. In days of despair and surrender, small bands of men have come together in a new determination that a great nation shall live and shall again be great.
They have fought in loneliness and darkness, until the small bands have become a mighty force of national regeneration, as the Blackshirts have become to-day They have withstood the fierce onslaught of all material things, and their names have been inscribed with honour on the roll of our island history. They are the heroes of our past, and the Blackshirts stand to-day where they have stood.
Let the Blackshirt, then, be worn with pride and honour, and let the oldest salute of British civilisation be given by one Fascist to another, for we are bound together in a mighty brotherhood dedicated to the salvation of a great nation, and resolved that Britain once more shall lead the world.
UNEMPLOYMENT AND THE
THE NATURE OF THE CRISIS
End the Vicious Circle
In the first three chapters of this book I have examined the present breakdown of Parliament and Government. It is necessary, not only to have a new machinery of government, but also a new psychology and philosophy of government. A Fascist movement must first be created which changes all existing values and methodology, and evokes from the nation a new consciousness and social sense. The new world must produce not only a new machinery, but also a new spirit which pervades every element of national life.
Thus the changes necessary to meet the modern problem can only come from Fascism, for alone it provides the spirit as well as the instrument. Existing parties, including the Labour and Socialist movements, propose economic changes in the life of the country; but their methods of securing those changes are the same that have led to ever-deepening confusion for the past century. They embrace every democratic fallacy and denial of individual responsibility which has led to the present complete paralysis of action.
Spirit of the Last Century
Their spirit and philosophy are still those of 1832, which perished for all effective purposes with the century which gave them birth. Thus the changes which they propose on paper, and the promises by which they secure the support of the electorate, can never be implemented by their Governments because they lack the methodology and the spirit of the modern age which are essential to meet the modern problem.
The problem of the twentieth century can only be overcome by the force born of the twentieth century which is expressed in the method and philosophy of Fascism. We have examined already the new spirit and technique of Fascism; we will now examine the problem to which this force must be addressed.
A Revolution in Industry
We believe that a revolution has occurred in science and industrial organisation which necessitates a corresponding revolution in government. In recent years, new invention, process and method in industry, which are summarised in the word “rationalisation,” have immensely increased the power to produce goods. No corresponding increase has taken place in the ability to consume goods. On the contrary, the very events which have made possible a larger consumption of goods tend in present conditions to reduce the actual consumption of goods. As demand remains static in relation to increasing production, the new process of rationalisation simply entails that the same amount of goods is produced with less labour.
As a result, men and women are thrown into unemployment and their consequent loss of purchasing power yet further reduces the market for which industry is producing In addition, the large pool of unemployed tends continually to reduce the wages of those remaining in employment for an unemployed man is always waiting eagerly to take the place of an employed man, and all attempts to resist wage reductions, let alone to increase wages, become impossible.
Thus rationalisation, which should lead to a greater consumption of goods, in fact leads, under the present system, to a lesser consumption of goods. The result is an ever-increasing over-production in relation to effective demand, which we describe as “the under-consumption problem.” A vicious circle is created which rationalisation begins: unemployment, lower wages, lower purchasing power, a lesser market, a lesser demand for goods, more unemployment. Thus the very triumph of science and the mind of man over nature by mechanical development threatens our present industrial system with collapse.
This phenomenon is common to all nations and confronts them all with a problem of surplus production of which they strive desperately to dispose. As the home markets of all nations are thus reduced, their only outlet becomes the foreign market, which is made up of the sum of nations whose home markets arc similarly reduced and who are consequently confronted with precisely the same problem.
The final reduction to absurdity is reached when every nation declares at the same time that it must have a favourable balance of trade. In other words, every nation strives simultaneously to sell more to other nations than it buys from them; an objective which it is clear all nations cannot simultaneously achieve.
Thus a cut-throat competition develops, in which the weaker countries go under and the crash of their markets reacts yet more disastrously on the international economics o the present world. The logical absurdity of the struggle is one nation victorious over all others in international competition, with all its rivals ruined, and consequently unable to sell any of the surplus production of which it seeks to dispose in world markets. In the present process of this insane struggle, all home markets of course are being progressively reduced. Fervid appeals are made to labour, which in the end is forced, under the lash of compulsion, to accept wage reductions in order to reduce costs and thereby to capture foreign markets.
But the foreign markets are all being diminished by this same process which operates in all countries. Thus all nations, by a reduction of wages and consequently by a reduction in their domestic purchasing power, are destroying the solid reality of the home market in an effort to grasp the illusion of foreign markets, which in their turn are being destroyed by precisely the same internal process.
When our Fascist policy was first advanced in Britain, it had occurred to none of them to abandon the international fantasy and to seek to build a civilisation within a self-contained country equipped with a purchasing power adequate to absorb the production of their own industrial machines. Yet what other escape from the menace of international competition is now presented to any nation in the world? All internationalism, whether of a Socialist or Capitalist financial character, rests upon the proved fallacy of international trade in conditions of cut‑throat competition. But the Fascist solution belongs to later chapters, at present we are examining the problem which we have to meet, a process with which the parties of the past have sometimes dispensed before advancing their remedies.
So far, this survey has only been addressed to the industrial problem which confronts all nations. In particular, Great Britain is faced with a problem fundamentally more serious than that confronting any other nation. This problem has temporarily been concealed to some extent by our exchange depreciation in 1931, and other fortuitous events which assisted us, despite the most strenuous efforts of our present Government to prevent their occurrence. That depreciation in exchange without any rise in the internal price-level gave us a bounty on exports and an automatic barrier against imports, which temporarily afforded us a most-favoured-nation position. Fortunately, the £130 million of the taxpayers’ money with which the Government sought to bolster up the Gold Standard were ineffective for that purpose, and we fell rather than moved into the relatively sheltered position which we have enjoyed for the last two years.
A Precarious Position
Now, however, that other nations may undergo currency depreciation, with the result that the pound will no longer be under-valued in relation to other currencies the true position may begin to emerge over a period of time which may yet be considerable. That true position is the precarious situation in which any nation must be placed if it is dependent, as we are, for 30 per cent. of its production of manufactured goods upon foreign markets, which in present world conditions are bound progressively to close against us.
Firstly, all nations, as we have already observed, are striving simultaneously to dump their surplus production abroad In competition with our goods.
Secondly, all nations are striving to produce themselves as large a proportion as possible of the goods which they consume, and to this end are protecting their own markets against the entry of our goods.
Thirdly, a predatory and uncontrolled capitalism is now developing backward nations with cheap slave labour which can easily perform the simple automatic tasks of modern mass production at a cost with which white labour cannot hope to compete.
Some of these forces are now in active operation, others are only just beginning to be felt. All are bound to increase as time goes on, rather than to diminish in intensity. Against these hard facts of the modern world, our internationalists, whether it be Mr. Chamberlain at the Bankers’ Dinner or Mr. Lansbury at a Labour Party Conference, set only the Utopian dream of a world returning to a Cobdenite paradise in which all trade barriers are lowered and each nation produces for international exchange only those goods which it is ideally fitted by nature and circumstances to produce.
This will-o’-the-wisp has been pursued by our statesmen of all the old Parties at international conferences for the last decade. While they have appealed for lower barriers and for more international co-operation, in actual experience the barriers have grown higher and the co-operation less. Other nations have not merely taxed and discouraged the entry of our goods to their markets; they have definitely and designedly excluded them.
To this end they have gone far beyond the old tariff barriers, and have invented half a dozen new devices in the last few years, ranging from complete exclusion, vetoes in dealings in foreign currencies, etc., to quotas which have severely restricted and progressively reduced the entry of our goods.
Will Barriers be Lowered?
Can a realist have any hope that these barriers will be lowered through the medium of future conferences, even if the experience of the past decade were insufficient to bring disillusion? In foreign countries, capital has been expended and employment afforded on the guarantees of the governments concerned that the competition of our goods would not be permitted. Does anyone seriously believe that they will lower their barriers just because Sir John Simon makes them a pretty speech at Geneva?
Will they really put their own people out of a job in order to put our people into a job? Will they ruin themselves in present world conditions merely to save the life of Mr. MacDonald’s Government when he makes a sobbing appeal at an international conference to the charity of the world? The suggestion becomes fantastic under any serious analysis, but upon this suggestion rests the whole international fallacy of the old world.
The statesmen of all the old parties have staked their all on a resumption of the international trade of the past, and have no policy but an appeal to the goodwill of other nations to ruin themselves for our benefit! Meanwhile, all countries under the pressure of reduced home markets try to dump abroad their surplus production in an internecine competition of increasing frenzy. Every home market is more and more protected, by instruments of increasing severity, against the entry of foreign goods.
Over the whole scene of turmoil looms the menacing shadow of the primitive man in backward countries, gripped and driven by the new slavery of a greedy and anarchic capitalism to produce cheap goods in undercutting competition with white labour, and thus finally to complete the ruin of the forward nations which gave capitalism birth and let it loose in the world on an unbridled career of destruction. Between us and this menacing scene of the modern age stand only the hoary figures of the Socialist leaders, mouthing platitudes concerning the brotherhood of man at the Second Internationale, while the Conservative leaders dance like marionettes at the end of the string which leads to that greater internationale of high finance, with its head office in Wall Street and its sub-branch in Threadneedle Street.
Such is the problem and the danger which our new young Fascism advances to meet. Who can say that any power which we ask of the nation is too great in relation to the problem which Fascism will be required to solve?
THE ONLY CURE FOR UNEMPLOYMENT
THE CORPORATE STATE AS THE FASCIST SOLUTION
Adjusting Consumption to Production
The present home market is quite inadequate to absorb the goods which the nation is now capable of producing. Men and machines are now idle because by reason of the low purchasing power of the population no demand exists for the goods they can produce.
The first necessity of the time is higher purchasing power but every factor of the present system tends to reduce rather than to increase the power to buy. At the same time, foreign markets are progressively closed against us because of the determination of every nation to produce as large a proportion as possible of the goods which it consumes. In addition, we are faced with an ever-increasing competition on the remaining markets of the world from nations striving to dispose of their surplus production, and from backward countries with cheap labour now in exploiting Capitalism.
Face the Facts
The prerequisite of action is to face the facts of the menacing situation which confronts Great Britain. The first task of action is to build a home market with a purchasing power adequate to absorb the production of our modern industrial system. This involves nothing less than the creation in this country of a new civilisation, with a standard of life far higher than prevails at present in the rest of the world.
The adjustment of that national and highly organised economic system with the chaotic economy of the rest of the world presents a problem of even greater difficulty, which belongs to the next chapter. We will consider first the measures by which Fascism will reorganise the industrial life of this country and will build a home market with a standard of life adequate to absorb present and potential production.
The Corporate State
The solution presented by Fascism is the Corporate State. As the name implies, this means a nation organised as the human body, with each organ performing its individual function, but working in harmony with the whole, and co-related with the general purpose by a directive and controlling intelligence, which, in the case of the nation, is Fascist government. The Corporate State is, in fact, a completely new conception of an organised nation, differing as widely from the present Capitalist State as it does from the Socialist conception of the State. No idea is more erroneous than the belief sedulously fostered by our Socialist enemies, that Fascism is merely a revival of Capitalism.
Fascism differs as profoundly from Capitalism as it does from Socialism. Fascism represents a new and revolutionary organisation in economics as well as a new conception of political philosophy and morality.
In simple definition, Capitalism Is the system by which capital uses the nation for its own purposes; Fascism is the system by which the nation uses capital for its own purposes.
The Nation’s Welfare
Within the Corporate State, individual enterprise is permitted and encouraged, provided that enterprise coincides rather than conflicts with the interest of the nation as a whole. Private ownership is established and secured on a basis as widely as possible diffused. Such private ownership is not what we understand as Capitalism, which represents large aggregations of capital in a few hands amounting to an independent power within but also above the State, which is frequently used for purposes inimical to the nation.
Under Corporate organisation, every interest, whether of Right or Left, whether represented by great banker or trade union official, will be subordinate to the collective purpose and welfare of the nation as a whole. The principle of the Corporate State is not, as under Socialism, to uproot established institutions of national life, but rather to transform them from functions inimical to purposes conducive to the welfare of the nation. Every instrument of present national life must be woven into the structure of Corporate Government, where, as functioning members of a greater whole, they will find a larger, and not a lesser, scope for their activities.
For instance, instead of employers’ organisations and trade unions being the opposing armies of class war, they will become the joint directors of national production and distribution. The clash of interests which at present leads inevitably to internecine struggle will be resolved by the community of interest under Corporate organisation, and the energies wasted in present strife will be diverted and sublimated to constructive purposes. Later in this chapter we shall observe the manner in which that community of interest will be attained, which will be an even more potent factor in a new industrial harmony than the power of government through Corporate organisation to intervene for the settlement of disputes, and the decision of questions which at present can only be resolved by wasteful and embittered struggle.
It is however, important first to note how much more rapid in operation is the Fascist method of transforming existing instruments to new purposes than the Socialist method of uprooting all existing institutions in order, over a long period of time, to develop new institutions unsupported by any previous experience or tradition. Quite apart from the intrinsic superiority of Fascist organisation, this substantial gain in the time factor is highly important in meeting a situation of immediate menace demanding remedies susceptible of rapid application.
Organisation of the Corporation
The Corporate State will consist of corporations, each embracing an appropriate area of connected and interlocking industries. As already suggested, these corporations will not be conducted by the State, as in Socialist organisatiOn. They will be self-governing bodies, controlled by representatives of employers and workers, to whom will be added representatives of consumers’ interests, appointed by the National Corporation with the approval of the Government.
The function of the State will in no case be the conduct of industry, but rather the demarcation of the limits within which industry may operate, which will be determined by the interests of the nation as a whole. The National Corporation will be the synthesis of all other corporations and will represent the pooled experience and technique of the nation’s industrial system operating under the auspices of Fascist government. Through the National Corporation, Fascism will mobilise the industrial ability and energy of the country for purposes of national reconstruction.
Functions of the Corporation
Under Fascism in Britain, the function of the Corporations will not be the relatively passive rôle of settling industrial disputes and problems in relation to present industrial facts. Their function will be the active role of changing those limiting factors of the present situation, by national reorganisation, to an altogether higher basis of civilisation.
They will not be concerned merely with the division of industrial profit between employers and workers upon a basis equitable within the limits imposed by the present restriction of industrial production; their function will be so to reorganise industry that the divisible proceeds are immensely increased.
For, as we have already observed if we fail to increase the purchasing power of the population in order to evoke a greater production, we shall fail to solve the industrial and the unemployment problem.
It will, In fact, be the function of the industrial corporations in this country to adjust for the first time consumption to demand. Their task will be to raise salaries and wages progressively and uniformly over the whole sphere of industry, as science and industrial technique increase the power to produce.
As rationalisation increases the power to produce, the power to consume must also be increased by the raising of standards, if we are not to be confronted with the old dilemma that rationalisation creates unemployment unless the demand for goods is increased to meet the greater production. Further, wages and salaries have to be increased not only to meet future measures of rationalisation, but also in sufficient degree to create a demand for the services of the millions whom rationalisation has already thrown into unemployment.
Corporate organisation, in fact, must lift the nation from a low wage civilisation to a high wage civilisation if the home market is to be adequate to absorb the labour of the unemployed.
“Where is the Money—?”
It is clear that a hiatus will exist between the raising of wages and the increase of production in response to that increase of demand which, in the end of the process, will make the payment of increased wages economic from increased industrial profits. It is to this gulf that the familiar platform query: “Where is the money to come from?” is somewhat obscurely addressed. The answer is that the credit resources of the British financial system must be vigorously used to bridge that gulf.
Shocking as the suggestion is to Old Gang leaders, we actually propose that British credit should be used to finance increased British production and consumption, instead of to equip our industrial competitors against us by large loans to foreign countries! The necessity of fresh credit for this purpose will, of course, be temporary, because when production is increased in response to the greater demand, the high wage system will become self-supporting and economic.
Anyone who gives a little attention to the costing system of modern mass-production plant is aware that the cost of production is determined, not by the rate of wage but by the rate of production. If industry is producing at full pressure for a large and assured market, it is possible greatly to raise wages and yet to produce at even lower prices on a profitable basis.
Even if ample statistical evidence were not available, Ford proved this contention up to the hilt in practical demonstration until the antics of Wall Street knocked his assured market flat. But it is necessary first to produce a market large enough for mass production to serve at full pressure, and this can only be done by the raising of salaries and wages under Corporate organisation.
High Wages and Home Market
The necessity for the raising of purchasing power by the raising of wages is now reflected in the new clamour of appeal from Press lords and other belated converts for a larger market to be provided by higher wages.
But under the present system no individual employer can raise wages or even maintain them, in many cases, without being undercut and put out of business by some rival who reduces them. In the anarchy of unbridled Capitalism, a premium is put on the laggard and the blackleg against national reorganisation. Nothing but the regulation of the Corporate State can secure that uniform raising of standards which makes a higher wage system a practical proposition.
New civilisations with a higher standard of life are achieved by organisation, and not by sentiment. Everything worth having in this world is won by hard work, and not by tears, however heart-rending such tears may be when they are pumped through a two million circulation.
Therefore a high wage system will not be secured by sentimental appeal addressed to employers struggling with cut-throat internal competition behind a flimsy tariff barrier which is often inadequate even to save them from cheap foreign competition.
For Conservatism may partially have protected us from foreign employers who pay low wages, but it has afforded no protection whatever against British employers who pay low wages.
That high wage system can only be secured by Corporate regulation of standards within an “insulated” national organisation from which foreign goods which can be produced in this country are definitely excluded.
The comprehensive system of the Corporate State alone will create a home market sufficient to absorb the production of men and machines now idle, by the regular and systematic increase of wages and salaries to provide the purchasing power requisite to create a demand for present and potential production.
The steel machine of Fascism alone can create a civilisation adequate to meet the modern industrial problem.
SELF-CONTAINED EMPIRE AND THE
VIGOROUS PLANNING OF EMPIRE RESOURCES
The Mumbo-Jumbo of Economist-Financiers
As science, rationalisation and Industrial technique increase the power to produce, the Corporate system, by the raising of salaries and wages, will increase the power to consume.
Thus, for the first time, a reorganisation of our industrial system will enable demand to be adjusted to modern production, and the present problem of over-production, or rather of under-consumption, will be solved.
When we turn to the export trade, superficial critics often maintain that the raising of salaries and wages in order to provide a larger home market will jeopardise our exports by raising costs. On the contrary, Corporate organisation will greatly assist the export trade. It is contended that the raising of wages will raise the prices of our goods in our export industries, and that we shall consequently fail to hold foreign markets under competitive conditions.
Modern Mass Producing
As we observed in the last chapter, the cost of production is determined in modern industry far more by the rate of production than by the rate of wage. This fact will not be denied by anyone who has studied the costing processes of modern mass-producing plant, and it leads us to an irresistible conclusion in support of the Fascist argument.
If we greatly increase the home market by raising the rate of wage, we shall greatly increase the rate of production for that home market.
Nearly all our export trades produce for both the home and the foreign markets. The demand for their goods in the home market will be increased, and their rate of production to serve that demand will also be increased.
As an increase in the rate of production is proved to decrease prices, even when a higher wage is paid, the export trades will actually be assisted rather than handicapped in their struggle for foreign markets by the existence of a large home market resting upon a high wage system.
From the secure basis of that large and assured home market they can reach out to the capture of foreign markets with the firm grasp of lower costs made possible by increased production to serve an increased demand on the home market.
Further, Corporate organisation will make possible new trade policy in which the whole weight and power of government can be mobilised behind our export trades. lt will be clear to those who study Corporate organisation that it must result in a great unification and consolidation, of both our buying and selling arrangements abroad.
In place of the export trade speaking with a thousand incoherent and struggling voices, it will speak through the corporations with voices which are few, but strong. We can thus, for the first time, use collectively our position as a great buyer to support our position as a great seller. Hard ad hoc bargains can be struck with foreign nations anxious to sell to us.
Our trade motto will be “Britain buys from those who buy from Britain.” We will divert elsewhere our purchases if nations from whom we buy will not buy from us in return.
The present chaos of the world should yield very good results to a nation thus organised to use its commercial strength. All the primary producing countries are now over-producing in relation to effective demand, and are competing with each other to sell to Britain, which is the biggest single buyer of their products in the world. Any such country, in the present situation, from whom we divert our purchases, is confronted with something approaching ruin. Conversely, any nation to whom we divert our purchases will greatly benefit.
We are thus in a strong position to drive hard bargains for the acceptance of our manufactured exports in return for our imports of foodstuffs and raw materials.
Quite frankly, Fascism will drive such hard bargains in pursuit of our simple policy of “Britain First.” If suffering must exist through the folly of the world, we choose deliberately that others, rather than Britain, shall suffer, until others too are driven to sane economics from which, as we shall see later, the whole world will benefit in a rationalised and modernised economic system.
Thus we should drive our hard bargains with all nations for the acceptance of our exports, while we get on with the building of a Britain largely self-contained and an Empire entirely self-contained, which would render us immune from the shocks of world chaos within an “insulated” civilisation, possessing a far higher standard of life than prevailed in the backward countries that had not embraced Fascist principles and organisation.
The building of a Britain as nearly as possible self-contained, and an Empire entirely self-contained, is the declared objective of the British Union of Fascists. We shall examine in a later chapter on Agriculture the measures by which foreign imports of food-stuffs will be excluded and replaced by an expansion of British production under a three-year plan.
Great Britain will, however, always be dependent on other countries for some of its food-stuffs which cannot be produced here, and for many of our raw materials. All these products, however, are available within our own Empire, and it is possible to create an “insulated” or “autarchic” Empire economic system which is entirely self-contained.
It is argued that by increasing British production of food-stuffs, we shall damage some part of our present export trade, which now pays for imported food-stuffs. This argument altogether ignores the fact that by increasing agricultural production we increase the wealth of this country and consequently increase the home demand for goods.
Gaining British Markets
If we produce here goods which were formerly produced abroad, the purchasing power of the farming community will be proportionately increased.
Instead of placing purchasing power in the hands of foreign farmers by buying their goods, we shall put corresponding power in the hands of British farmers and farm workers by buying their British products. To the extent that we lose foreign markets we shall thus gain British markets.
So far as the export trade is concerned by this transaction, it will benefit, because in the assured British market from which foreign goods are excluded, it will not be undercut by Japanese goods and other cheap products of low-paid labour with whose competition it is now faced in foreign markets.
A great increase in British purchasing power consequent on agricultural reorganisation will enable the export trade to divert its energies from a bad foreign market to a good home market. When that process is complete, however, we shall still be faced with the necessity of purchasing from other countries such food-stuffs and raw materials as we cannot produce here. Such articles can and will be bought from the Empire.
However much the Dominions develop their own industries, they will remain primarily exporters of foodstuffs and raw materials, and we shall remain primarily exporters of manufactured goods. Here arises a natural exchange of trade which should and must be developed on an Empire plan. We must plan, by arrangement between the Dominions and ourselves, the future production of the Empire on a basis of natural suitability and Interchange.
Without such planning, chaos will develop, for inappropriate industries will spring up here and in the Dominions behind artificial barriers. Such planning, of course, will be greatly facilitated by Fascist Governments in the Dominions, and happily strong Fascist movements are now making rapid headway in those countries.
We shall never seek to dictate to the Dominions in any sense what manner of government they shall adopt, but it is clear that a Fascist Government in Britain will, by its example and, we believe, by its success, encourage the development of similar governments throughout the Dominions.
With Fascism firmly established throughout the Empire, we could develop on a vast Imperial plan the greatest economic unit of the world to the mutual benefit of its inhabitants, who are united by every tie of blood and interest.
The Crown Colonies
The Crown Colonies are, of course, under our direct control, and from them Fascist government in Britain would immediately exclude all foreign products. Such action, for instance, would at once reduce the present unemployment of Lancashire cotton and textile workers by at least one-third. The Colonies owe everything to Britain, and it is only right that they should co-operate in an extensive mutual welfare planning of Empire.
Within those Colonies, too, we would prevent, under ordered and systematic planning, the present exploitation of backward labour by a predatory Capitalism with the sole purpose of snatching fat profits for itself, by undercutting British labour with the cheap production of virtually slave labour in backward countries.
What is called, in Socialist theory, “self-determination” of primitive peoples, means, in practice, handing them over to the exploitation of a Capitalism which is frequently foreign, with results equally destructive to their own welfare and to the white standard of life. The poison stream of sweated goods has already entered our own arteries of Empire, and they must be purified of this taint if the body is to live and to develop in health and vitality.
A Coherent Plan
We have reached the point where it is necessary, in the interests of every member, to organise the Empire on a conscious and coherent plan if it is not to relapse into ultimate chaos and disintegration. What a crime that would be against economic common-sense, as well as against the pride and achievement of our own race and history! We hold within our grasp the richest economic unit in the world. Shall we let it fall in tame surrender, or shall we advance to the only alternative, which is vigorous executive planning of British resources for British requirements?
At present the British Empire imports from foreign countries £899,110,000 goods per annum; while our total manufactured exports from Great Britain to foreign countries only amount to £169,375,783 per annum. Within a self-contained or autarchic Empire from which undercutting foreign competition is excluded, we have available a market more than five times as great as foreign countries afford us to-day.
What holds us back from this mighty conception of Empire as an economic and spiritual unit insulated from the chaos and follies of the outside world? The force of international finance is the answer, for the sub-branch of Wall Street is now situated in the City of London. These financiers, many of them aliens, have advanced great loans to foreign countries, and have equipped against us our industrial competitors all over the world.
They are paid an annual interest on these loans which cannot be transmitted in the form of money, but enters this country in the form of foreign goods for realisation on our markets. If foreign goods are excluded, in favour of British production, the interest on the financiers’ loans will be jeopardised. They have piled up these great foreign investments in the past on the fruits of British labour.
British steel and textile machinery workers have toiled in the past to develop our exports and to secure for this country a favourable balance of trade to serve this end of international finance, and to no other effective purpose. The “favourable balance of trade” secured by these exports has created the surplus from which the financiers make the foreign loans. By means of these loans based on the capital goods exported from this country, these foreign countries have been industrialised.
Subsequently they have paid interest on the loans with goods which we enable them to produce, whose entry to our markets puts British workers out of a job. In short all this mysterious mumbo-jumbo of economist-financiers about the necessity for an Export Surplus has been a fine plan for enriching the financier and for enslaving and impoverishing the British producer.
Fascism Challenges Alien Finance
All parties bow the knee to alien finance: Mr. Chamberlain declares at the Bankers’ Dinner that the aim of Conservative policy is the resumption of an “international lending,” whilst Socialists put the same thing in another way by bleating of the brotherhood of man through international organisation.
Fascism calls a halt to the game, and challenges the interests of Left and Right who have betrayed their country and dissipated its resources for the benefit of aliens at home and abroad. We are faced with the question which interest shall prevail in the future policy of British Empire: alien finance, or the British producer? Fascism replies with no uncertain voice: “Britain First.”
THE CRITICS ANSWERED
ENDING THE STRUGGLE FOR MARKETS
The Economics of an Age of Plenty
We have examined the economic problem, and have come to the conclusion that it can only be finally solved by a Britain organised to be as far as possible self-contained within a British Empire entirely self-contained. Such a conception is as remote from the economics of the last century as it is impossible of attainment without the preliminary creation of a Fascist movement, which alone will provide the instrument and the spirit to achieve a reorganisation of our national life so vast and so complex.
It is for those who denounce this conception to show how the modern problem of unemployment and progressive economic deterioration can be overcome by any other means. Our opponents of all Parties believe in an international solution, Fascism alone believes in national organisation.
The international solution has been pursued for the last decade in interminable conferences held at nearly every watering-place in Europe and culminating in that final reduction to absurdity of the international mind in the Geological Museum of Victorian Kensington.
Old Gang Policies
So the internationalists must at least show some good reasons for hoping that their policy will be more successful in the future than it has been in the past before they persuade the country to reject without consideration the Fascist policy of national action. Yet these good reasons are not forthcoming, Mr. Chamberlain at the Bankers’ Dinner proclaims a return to the policy of international lending and the gold standard of the internationalist financiers without supplying any reason why that policy should be less disastrous in the future than it has proved in the past.
The Labour Party adhere to the international Socialism of their nineteenth-century theory which depends for its success, not only on the lengthy process of destroying and re-establishing of every instrument and institution of our national life, but also on the completion of a similar protracted process in every backward country of the world to which they are united in the Socialist International. They, too, can supply no good reason why these recalcitrant nations of the earth should be any more willing even to begin, let alone to conclude, this immense and dubious task in the immediate future than they have been during the eighty odd years which have elapsed since their prophet, Karl Marx, first propounded his theories.
The Awkward Squad
Neither Conservatives of the Wall Street International nor Labour Leaders of the Socialist International have yet provided any good reason for the country to believe that the world’s awkward squad is about to fall in at Geneva, and to march off in quick time for the millennium under the command either of Sir John Simon or Mr. Arthur Henderson. Yet upon this unlikely contingency continue to rest all the hopes of the international school, which now includes all the old Parties, Conservatives, Socialists and Liberals alike.
The old gangs have no more reason to believe in the success of their international policy in the immediate and menacing future than in the long and weary past in which that policy has been tried and has failed. So they content themselves with sterile denunciations of Fascist national policy which rest upon profound misconceptions.
Their attack usually falls into two parts which we will examine seriatim: —
(1) The economic division of nations is economic suicide. (2) National organisation in economics leads to international war.
Economics of the Last Century
The first charge arises from the simple fact that our critics are still gripped by the economics of the last century. That charge would have been perfectly true in the first half of the last century when the text-books were written, which our critics, with much labour and some pride, have succeeded in mastering nearly a century later. The necessity for fresh and creative thought is always painful, but we suggest to them that their text-books must be rewritten in the light of new facts. In the interval which has elapsed science has revolutionised the means of production.
When the text-books were written, the world was passing through the phase of poverty economics; mankind with great difficulty and much hardship was just able to produce sufficient goods to keep alive.
Cheapness was then a paramount necessity; it was essential that goods should be produced in the country most naturally suitable to their production and exchanged with corresponding goods suitably and cheaply produced in other countries. Any barriers to the thin trickle of international trade in goods produced with such difficulty were liable to result in immediate collapse and starvation. Thus ran the broad argument of the classical economists and in the conditions of their day they had most of the facts on their side, although they erred gravely even then by their ruin of British agriculture in pursuit of their international free trade theory.
The Facts Have Changed
Whatever validity their theories possessed in those days, they have lost all force in the modern age in which all the facts have changed. To-day we have passed from the economics of poverty to the economics of plenty. Our problem is no longer how to produce enough to live; our problem is how to consume what is produced.
Modern science has virtually solved the problem of production, it remains for Governments to solve the problem of distribution. Practically any finished commodity can be produced in any advanced country at only slight variations in cost. With the exception of certain food-stuffs and raw materials it is possible for nearly every modern country to be self-contained, provided a sane organisation of the State releases the forces of production.
It is no longer a problem of international barriers preventing the exchange of goods which can only be produced with sufficient cheapness in countries naturally suitable for their production. It is a problem of internal chaos within each nation preventing the production and consumption of goods which science has enabled us to produce everywhere in superabundance.
This transition from the economics of poverty to the economics of plenty changes the facts and alters completely the nature of the problem. Yet our old leaders of all Parties continue to think in terms of the poverty economics of the old text-books when they denounce economic divisions between nations. Even while Conservatism imposes tariffs to which it is driven in an attempt to correct an adverse balance of trade, the son of Joseph Chamberlain in the decadence of his Party speaks of lowering trade barriers and of supporting the international finance which rests on the free trade system that in modern development has become simply “freedom of capital.”
Even more characteristic is the muddled thought of English Socialism in the adherence of Labour to an international free trade which subjects British labour to the undercutting of cheap foreign labour which has been exploited by “Freedom of Capital.” Their prophet, Karl Marx, advocated class war in the mistaken belief that construction can come from the forces of destruction and pursued the other fantastic illusion that International Socialism can arise from universal revolution, based on concerted and simultaneous action by one class in all the diverse and divided nations of the universe. His belief and his hopes in actual practice have proved illusory, but he did, at least, foresee certain developments of the industrial revolution to which his followers are still blind, although some of them have already occurred.
He prophesied that in the development of Capitalism wage standards would tend to be reduced to the subsistence level, and, in the absence of the organised State, this has proved true at least to the extent that low wages and the consequent lack of a Home market now drive nations who are industrially developed to dump their surplus production abroad in an increasing pressure of international competition.
Phantasy of International Revolution
He did not foresee that these natural forces could be overcome by the intervention of the organised State as other natural laws are prevented by scientific means; e.g. the laws of gravity are flouted by the aeroplane. So he pursued the phantasy of International revolution by a class instead of the reality of an organised and classless nation.
His followers have pursued his internationalism, but have abandoned his revolutionary action. Instead they now seek to secure benefits for the British working-class by kind permission of international financiers within an international system which makes these benefits impossible.
Thus we find all the old Parties not only clinging to text-books of the last century, but even making a muddle of their teaching, which in addition is long out of date. We can, therefore, scarcely be surprised that they fail to understand the new Fascist theory of the State and conception of economics which are based on the great new factor that we have passed from the problem of poverty to the problem of plenty.
Economic Nationalism and Peace
Equally confused is the thought of our assailants when we turn to the second charge that national organisation in economics leads to war. They say that “economic nationalism” is fatal to world peace, because “other nations will follow our example and economic rivalry between highly organised nations will lead to world war.”
Let us first inquire what this economic rivalry will be about. If other nations followed our example and were self-contained, where would an international struggle arise? At present such rivalry exists in the struggle for markets under the present international system. Unorganised nations with diminishing home markets strive to sell abroad their surplus in international competition.
But under national organisation that necessity would cease to exist because each nation would be able to dispose of its present surplus at home by reason of the increased purchasing power of its home market. So far, therefore, from other nations following our example in national organisation, and thus increasing economic rivalry between nations, that process will bring this international rivalry to an end.
Eliminating the Struggle
Most people, even if they belong to the old Parties, will admit that present economic rivalry arising from the struggle for markets is among the prime causes of war. Therefore, if we eliminate that struggle for markets of the present international system, we greatly reduce rather than increase the risks of war. Further, the Fascist system would eliminate the struggle for foreign influence between interested financiers in support of which they have often dragged their countries under subservient governments towards war.
Under Fascism national finance would be devoted to national purposes.
In fact, under analysis, the argument that national organisation leads to war is speedily dissolved, and exactly the reverse proves to be the case. In the light of modern facts the most powerful mind of the old economists, Mr. Keynes, has been compelled to admit that national self-sufficiency tends towards Peace. His less able colleagues of the old school continue to labour in a confusion of thought which is almost pathological.
One other argument alone remains; “all nations cannot be self-contained and many would be shut off from raw materials.” We answer that in modern conditions nearly all large nations can achieve self-contained or autarchic organisation. Some small countries carved up by the inept Peace Treaties cannot achieve it without economic federation. For precisely that reason the realism of Fascism presses for revision of treaties, at any rate in economic terms.
There are plenty of raw materials in the world to satisfy the needs of mankind, and under the development of science, nations become continually less dependent on remote raw materials (e.g. the development of oil and petrol from British coal, which science makes possible but Government stultifies).
Fascist Governments with their Corporate system unifying and consolidating their remaining external trade relations can settle between each other by reasonable agreement the allocation of raw materials which are sufficient for all. The struggle for markets will be eliminated and the struggle for raw materials reduced to manageable proportions susceptible of agreement between men of like mind, united in the indissoluble brotherhood of Universal Fascism.
With cold realism Fascists will remove the economic causes of war and will construct on the new and solid foundation of each great nation reorganised and recreated in a new consciousness the immense majesty of Fascist Peace.
WORK PLANS AND SLUM CLEARANCE
Fascism will Clear the Slums in Three Years
MOBILISING THE BUILDING INDUSTRY
Rebuilding the Physique of the Nation
Our policy is nothing less than the construction of a new civilisation to meet the new facts of the modern age.
That revolution can be carried through far more rapidly than Socialist policy because it does not uproot every institution of national life, but rather adapts and transforms them to new purposes. Fascism substitutes the harmony of the Corporate State and the overriding interest of the Nation for the warring factions and the chaos of class war, which the conflict between a reactionary Conservatism and a woolly-minded Socialism has created.
However, despite the greater speed as well as the greater practicability of Fascist policy it is evident that some time must elapse between the acquisition of power by Fascism and the completion of the Corporate State. That interval must be bridged by the provision of constructive schemes which will both find work for the unemployed and will permanently enrich the Nation.
An Emergency Scheme
Few who survey the present condition of Britain will deny that such work is available and is in urgent need of execution. Even within the limits of democratic machinery I was able to produce when a Minister of the Crown, plans for providing immediate work for 800,000 of the unemployed which were, of course, rejected by the Labour Government. Those plans, in broad outline, were as follows: — (1) An emergency scheme for the voluntary retirement on pension of those over sixty and a postponement of the entry of the young into Industry. The cost to the State would be extremely small owing to the saving in Unemployment benefit now paid to those who would take their places in employment. (2) Constructive works to provide direct and indirect employment. The latter policy could, of course, be immensely extended in scope by a Fascist Government which was free from the daily obstruction of the Democratic machine. Nearly all work schemes had to pass through hundreds of local authorities, many of whom were obstructive and reactionary.
Fighting and Chattering
Under Democracy the unemployed are maintained in compulsory idleness while the Government pulls one way and the Local Authorities pull the other. Just conceive a national business run on such lines that the central office in London had one policy and most of the provincial branch offices had another.
The result would be complete chaos, yet by these methods we strive to conduct the Government of the country and to meet the unemployment problem with the central government and the independent Local Authorities fighting, chattering and disputing over the body of the unemployed.
Under Fascism, the central government and the Local Authorities would be members of one team, all pulling in the same direction.
The reader will recall from earlier chapters that M.P.s, under Fascism, will not be employed in hanging about Westminster gossiping in the lobbies and obstructing in the Chamber. Fascist M.P.s will be given executive tasks in their own area under government and will meet in Parliament for a periodic review of the Government’s work, armed with facts obtained, not in the idle chatter of the Lobbies, but in actual administrative experience. The rôle of an M.P. will thus be transformed from that of a windbag into that of a man of action.
Fascist M.P.s will be the spearheads of the Government’s drive to action in the areas from which they are returned to Parliament. For this purpose Local Authority areas w ill be redivided into larger and more economic units suitable to modern development. Over each area will preside a Fascist M.P., with individual responsibility in accord with Fascist principles.
He will be assisted by a locally elected council, in which there will be allotted to each councillor charge of one department for which he will be individually responsible to the local leader namely, the Fascist M.P.
The absurd Committee system will be swept away under which one councillor may belong to half a dozen talkative committees as a Jack of all Trades but master of none. Throughout the principle of individual responsibility will be maintained, the duty of action will be defined and the blame for failure will be assessed.
An Instrument for Action
By these means a great instrument for action will be created, not only in the central government but also in the localities. The people will be governed by executive members of the majority whom they have elected, but for the first time they will be able to demand action and to put their finger on the reasons for any failure because the principle of individual responsibility will be established.
Such a team pulling together in the right direction could for the first time provide the constructive and economic works urgently necessary to meet the immediate problem of unemployment.
A Tragic Farce
Chief among the constructive works would be the problem of slum clearance, which we will select as an instance of Fascist method. The necessity for new houses to replace present slum houses is variously estimated by competent authorities as between one million and one and a half million new houses. The slum clearance policy of the present Government amounts to 60,000 new houses each year.
Thus it would take the present Government fifteen to twenty years at the present rate of progress to clear and rebuild the present slums without making any allowance for other houses which will degenerate into slums during that period if the problem is not tackled. It is scarcely necessary to say more on the tragic farce of the Democratic attack on the slums.
The Labour Party, in their recently published pamphlet on the slum problem, pin their faith to their 1930 Act, at present being operated by the National Government (it is increasingly interesting to note how the old gangs take over each other’s programmes in office, despite the sham fight of their party politics!). They talk of a “speeding up of procedure” and even of coercing recalcitrant local authorities after the long process of trial and error under “Munition Act Powers” (an idea they picked up from the previously published Fascist policy).
But they make it clear that they will work in the future as in the past by the methods of the present system, and only as a very last resource will they interfere with local authorities where Socialist gas-bags develop those vocal powers in the obstruction of local business, which in the case of the exceptionally long-winded lead them in the concluding stages of their careers to the yet greater achievement of obstructing the whole nation’s business at Westminster! So Fascist policy stands as the only new contribution to the solution of the slum problem.
Fascist Slum Clearance
Fascism would make the slum clearance problem a national task in the following manner, we would formulate our programme for clearing the slums and rebuilding over a period of three years. For this period we would give guaranteed employment in the building trade at good rates of wages, which would absorb the labour of the 228,000 now unemployed in that trade, and also the labour of as many of the general unemployed as were necessary to the completion of the task in the shortest possible time.
We would divide the slums of each of the great cities into sections to be gutted and rebuilt over the specified period. Outside the city we would erect temporary bungalows to house the inhabitants of section No. 1 while the slum was being pulled down and rebuilt. We would also provide a State transport service to carry them to and from their work.
They would thus live, during the rebuilding of their houses, with the people among whom they were accustomed to live, and the problem of carrying them to their work during the period would be solved by direct State action. When No. 1 section was completed, the inhabitants would vacate their bungalows and go back to their new houses.
The inhabitants of No. 2 section would then vacate their houses and would go to the bungalows and use the new transport system. When their houses were completed, No. 3 section would take over the bungalows and use the transport system until their houses were completed; and so on until the gutting and rebuilding of the slums had been completed.
Mobilising the Building Trade
To do this would amount to a national mobilisation of the building trade, and the problem would be treated in much the same way as the problem of providing shells in the war. We know from actual experience that these methods enormously reduce the cost of production. We shall be producing for a demand which is known and can be calculated precisely in advance. A costing system can, therefore, be developed which will reduce the cost of production to the utmost limit.
Once the problem is taken as a national problem, it can be organised on the grand scale and every principle of modern organisation and of mass production can be employed.
By these means we can carry through the destruction and rebuilding of the slums at a far lower cost and at a far greater speed than the present political system conceives to be possible. The cost of production would further be lowered by the application of the Fascist principle that no landlord who has not properly maintained his property as a trustee to the State will be permitted to retain that property.
No Question of Compensation
In the clearance of slum property under Fascism, therefore, no question of compensation will arise. As a result of treating the matter as a national problem, and in all these ways reducing the cost of production, the cost of clearing and rebuilding our slums can be reduced to a very low point. In fact, it is almost certain that under such a system the new houses could be re-let to the tenants at an economic rent which was no higher than the rent they had previously paid.
If there was any difference between the new economic rent and the rent they previously paid, it should fall upon the State as the national contribution to national health. Few things are more foolish under the present system than the method of pouring out millions to cure disease rather than spending money to prevent disease by such measures as slum clearance.
Organise National Health
The State must be prepared to organise and to finance the maintenance of national health. Foremost among these measures to rebuild the physique of the nation will be the rebuilding of the slums.
These measures, of course, will be combated by all the vested interests of democracy. All the talkative busybodies at Westminster and all the lesser but equally talkative busybodies of the Local Authorities, will be set aside. The self-importance of many little talkers of democracy will be sadly affected, and loud will be their lamentations at another example of Fascist tyranny! They will talk about freedom — all kinds of freedom, varying from the freedom of the Press to freedom of Democracy.
All of which really means their own freedom to talk. They talk while others starve in slums, and thus become the big, important people of Westminster and the local councils.
Fascism believes in a greater freedom, which is the freedom of Britons who have fought for their country to live in conditions worthy of that country. We will give a new freedom to the slum dweller at the expense of the present freedom of the little busybodies of democracy.
Could we have a clearer illustration of the difference between what we mean by freedom and what the old Parties mean by freedom?
THE POSITION OF WOMEN
WOMEN WILL BE FREE TO CHOOSE THEIR CAREERS
Direct Representation in Parliament
The position of women will be greatly improved by the Fascist State, quite apart from their participation in the general raising of the standard of life under Corporate organisation. At present the interests of women are neglected and they are without effective representation in government.
Under Fascism their interests will be a primary consideration of the State. The future of the race depends on women, and that future is a vital concern of Fascism, which is not occupied like the old Parties solely by opportunist policies of the present. Fascist Government is a great Trusteeship not only on behalf of the present generation but also on behalf of the past, and still more of the future.
A creed which carries that conscious responsibility must care for the welfare of women. This is not to admit the charge of malicious opponents that Fascism regards women purely as mothers of the race. On the other hand, it does establish a new and highly necessary principle of government that Fascism will care for the mothers of the race.
Sex War in Industry
Too long has the neglect of motherhood been not only a disgrace of our civilisation but a threat to the welfare and survival of the nation. Fascism, therefore, will care for motherhood, but women who care to pursue other lives will not only be free to pursue them, but for the first time will do so in conditions which make possible for women a happy and prosperous industrial or professional career.
It cannot be denied that at present in industry and in the professions the conditions of sex war exist just as also the conditions of class war exist. These conditions arise from economic chaos in the collapse of our old civilisation without the intervention of Government for the building of a new system.
Class war arises from the clash of interests between workers and employers in the division of the exiguous proceeds of present industry which modern science could make plentiful in a sanely organised society.
In the age of plenty, class war can be eliminated by Fascism releasing the forces of modern production to provide plenty for all within a system whose universal wealth will rest on a new industrial harmony which indicates co-operation in place of conflict as the path of simple common sense.
Not Enough Jobs To-day
In the same way sex war in industry will be eliminated by Fascism in the removal of the conditions which create it. Industrial war between the sexes arises from the simple fact that there are not enough jobs to go round.
When consumption is adjusted to production under the Corporate organisation described in previous chapters there will be enough jobs to go round, as there should be in any planned and organised society. The fight between the sexes in industry will then be eliminated because there will be nothing to fight about.
No opposition will arise to a removal of the present disabilities on women in industry and the professions, and such principles as “equal pay for equal work” can be established without disturbance of existing interests or equilibrium.
So far, therefore, from the position of women in industry and the professions deteriorating under Fascism it will be greatly improved. Women have nothing to fear and everything to gain from the victory of Fascism — not only in the general interest but also in their own particular interest.
Equal Pay for Equal Work
The myth that Fascism is inimical to the interests of women has been sedulously fostered by our opponents, who always prefer the appeal to fear to the appeal to reason and to fact. They claim that the position of women in Italy and in Germany is worse than their position in Great Britain.
Yet in Italy the principle of “equal work for equal pay” has been established In Corporate Industry, while the care of Mussolini’s Government for mother and child has become one of the glories of Italian civilisation.
In Germany, the only evidence I have discovered in support of the statement that women are badly treated rests on the fact that the Nazi Government subsidises marriage; a “piece of tyranny” under which, I imagine, many young English women would be quite glad to suffer. In fact, no serious evidence exists in support of these allegations concerning Fascist treatment of women in foreign countries; the reverse is the case.
Yet even if these charges were true, they would not imply that similar principles would be pursued in this country. Our opponents, who spend their time in slavish imitation of crude experiments in the most barbarous country in Europe, have yet to learn that Fascism in Britain does not require foreign models and will do things in a British way in consonance with our traditions.
In Britain we have a habit of assimilating what is good in foreign practice and of discarding what is bad. Again and again the great creeds which have been born on the Continent in a welter of confusion and of bloodshed have come to these shores in a manner worthy of our ordered greatness.
In Keeping with Britain’s Character
Thus Fascism, the world creed of the twentieth century, shall come to power in Britain by British methods in keeping with the British character. Therefore, we reply to those who charge Fascist policy abroad with slight consideration for women, that these charges are not true on the evidence and that, in any case, we shall maintain and elevate the British tradition of honouring and preserving womanhood.
Women who elect to pursue industrial or professional careers will be free to follow those avocations without disability and will be free from the rigours of the present struggle which arise from present economic conditions. On the other hand, women who desire to follow the great career of Home and children will be among the first cares of the Fascist State.
At present such women are governed by a Parliament in which they have no effective representation. Their interests are nominally in the hands of a small group of women M.P.s, comprised mostly of elderly spinsters with far less personal knowledge of the problems of Home and children than the average married man.
Any normal mother of children who secures election to Parliament imposes an impossible burden on her physique if she seeks to discharge both her duty to her children and to her constituents. She is faced with the necessity of neglecting one or the other unless she retires again to the sphere of the Home, where her chief and true interest lies.
So the field of women’s interests is left clear to the professional spinster politicians who used irreverently to be described as the Members for “No man’s land.” It will not be surprising to those familiar with this distressing type that the interests of the “normal woman” occupy no great place in the attention of Parliament.
Under Fascism, normal women will secure direct representation in Parliament and in a Corporation of Motherhood. They will vote as wives and mothers for those qualified to represent their interests who will be able to spare time for service in the less discursive and more business‑like machinery of Fascist Government.
For the first time Government under Fascism will be directly advised by women who have first‑hand experience of the Home. How often have Socialist tub‑thumpers told a Chancellor of the Exchequer that a few housewives could teach him a thing or two; under Fascism they will have a chance to teach him a thing or two. Fascism acts while Socialism talks. We provide a practical machinery of Government by which the experience of the housewife shall have its place in Whitehall.
This is a better deal for women than the machinery of the last Socialist Government, which stopped short at providing seats for two spinsters in the fifties on the Treasury Bench.
Once again we observe the effective differences between Socialist theory and Fascist practice. The conception of a Corporation for Motherhood may seem fantastic to the old gangs who have long neglected that great function, but it is in full consonance with the policy of Fascism within whose survey falls the whole proud story of our race.
The organisation of this great interest to that degree is a contribution of Britain to the thought of world Fascism. It is one of the many instances in which Fascism in Britain leads now in creative theory as it shall lead later in firm achievement.
A REAL POLICY FOR AGRICULTURE
THE STRUGGLE BETWEEN TOWN AND COUNTRY
Agricultural Production will be Doubled
AGRICULTURE takes a leading place in the Fascist determination to rebuild Britain. For nearly a century past this great industry has been the sport of Party politics and the victim of town‑bred politicians. Ever since the Conservative Party ceased to be the Party of the countryside and became the Party of international finance, agriculture has been ruthlessly sacrificed to alien interests.
Whenever a conflict has arisen between the interests of the British producer and the interests of the foreign investor the farmer has had the worst of the deal.
That conflict lies at the very root of the agricultural problem and will be discussed later in this chapter. Fascism’s clear‑cut policy of “Britain First” alone can resolve that conflict and save the countryside.
Let us first, however, consider the broad aspects of the agricultural problem and the reasons which render its solution impossible within the present system. Setting aside for the moment the conflict of interest between the farmer and the foreign investor, two further conflicts of interest exist, within this country itself, which cannot be settled by the present Party system.
Town and Country
In the first place, a conflict exists between town and country which Fascism alone can resolve. To make farming profitable the farmer requires a better price for his produce. The population of the towns, however, are too poor to pay this better price. So a direct conflict arises between town and country in which the farming population is always worsted in the end because it possesses a lesser voting power.
In the second place, a conflict of interest exists between the farmer and the farm worker. The latter rightly requires a better wage than the present wretched wages which are paid in the farming industry. On the other hand, the farmer cannot pay that better wage without charging more for his produce. The farmer knows that he cannot charge more for his produce without reducing the demand of the impoverished townsmen who provide his market. He cannot charge enough to make farming profitable on the present level of wages, let alone charge enough to enable him to pay decent wages and to make farming an economic proposition.
Mass of Middlemen
The whole problem is complicated by the intervention of a mass of middlemen between farmer and consumer, with the result that the housewife often pays for her food several times the amount which the farmer receives. This is the dilemma of the countryside before which all Parties stand impotent, promising one thing to the countryside and another to the town, but in the end, of course, doing nothing.
Fascist policy and power cut clean through the tangle.
(1) Fascism will eliminate unnecessary middlemen and will bring farmer and consumer together. Profiteering in food will be stopped, but to do this will require that authority in Government which the old Parties denounce as Dictatorship. Once again Fascist policy presents the people with a choice between real freedom and false freedom. On the one hand, freedom for the farmer to live and for the people to eat. On the other hand, freedom for politicians to talk. That choice must be made, for profiteering cannot be stopped by Government without the power to act.
Provision of Purchasing Power
(2) Fascism, through the Corporate system, will create a market for British farm produce at an economic price. At present the population of the towns cannot pay that economic price because purchasing power is too low. The Corporate system will raise wages and salaries over the whole field of industry, and thus will provide the purchasing power in the towns necessary to afford agriculture the market which it now lacks. The increase in purchasing power will greatly exceed any increase in price necessary to make farming economic. Indeed, the better price in most commodities could be almost entirely supplied at the expense of unnecessary middlemen who would be eliminated from their present occupation and reabsorbed in productive industry. The saving effected by cutting out middlemen’s profits, coupled with the greater purchasing power of the towns, would not only afford the farmer a market at an economic price on present production costs, but would also enable him to pay decent wages to farm workers and yet to show a profit. The higher purchasing power of farmers and farm workers in its turn would provide a market for industries in the towns which at present have to sell their products abroad in conditions of unfair world competition because they lack a Home market.
Fascist policy thus cuts across and settles for all time the conflict of interest between town and country and farmer and farm workers, and reconciles all national interests in the harmony of the Corporate State.
Fascist policy does not stop at the point of providing a steady market at an economic price for the present level of agricultural production. British agriculture can nearly double its present production if it is free from the present unfair foreign competition. At present we produce in this country £280 million of food‑stuffs each year; we import from the Dominions about £140 million and from foreign countries about £220 million.
Fascism will entirely exclude these foreign imports and will increase the production of British agriculture from £280 million to £500 million a year to take their place. The production of British agriculture can be nearly doubled entirely at the expense of the foreign interests without any reduction of Dominion supplies, which could even be increased when allowance is made for the larger purchasing power of the Home population. If any production has to be cut down it should be foreign production and not British or Dominion production, to whom the present Government turns first for any restriction.
Thus it would be the deliberate policy of Fascism nearly to double British agricultural production, and I have not found a single practical farmer in the course of my recent tour of the agricultural districts who denied that this was possible.
We may well ask why none of the existing Parties will embrace the policy of excluding foreign food‑stuffs in favour of British food‑stuffs. No great inquiry is necessary in the case of the Socialists, who are avowedly an International Party which rejects any such national policy of “Britain First.” They always set the interests of their friends in foreign countries, who are their comrades in the Second Internationale, before the interests of their sturdy British opponents in the English countryside.
But Conservatives always claimed to be a patriotic party, at least in the old days before they became just a sub‑branch in the Financial International, whose main branch is in Wall Street. Here we have the clear and undeniable explanation of Conservative’s shameful betrayal of agriculture. They have become a Party of the City of London and of International Finance.
As we have already observed, the City of London lives at present by making loans to foreign countries. Among others it has lent money to such countries as the Argentine. It receives from the latter country some £30 million per annum in interest on past loans. The Argentine is the main exporter of beef to Great Britain and thus pays the interest on her loans.
She does not pay that interest by the export of money but by the export of goods. The Argentine beef, which undercuts the British farmer and puts him out of business, is sold on our market for sterling and thus provides the interest due to the City of London. If Conservatives stopped the entry of the beef they would jeopardise the interest on the City’s loans. So some Conservatives propose tariffs which just tax the consumer, but still let the beef come in and so do not help the British farmer. Other Conservatives merely propose quotas which still let the beef in, but enable the foreigner to charge a higher price to the British consumer.
Surrender to the City
Neither the policy of Lord Beaverbrook nor the policy of the Government, in fact, is of the least use to agriculture. The farmer wants the foreign beef kept out and Fascism alone will do it for him. All brands of Conservatism surrendered long ago, lock, stock and barrel, to the alien‑ridden City. Fascism alone with its revolutionary challenge to alien interests and its policy of “Britain First” can and will save agriculture.
We will double British agricultural production for a market which will provide a steady and economic price. The consequent increase in the purchasing power of the farming community will in turn provide a market for our export trades, which now export to pay for foreign foodstuffs. In that “insulated” Home market they will no longer have to struggle against the unfair competition of cheap labour abroad as they do now in foreign markets.
The producer of the countryside, together with the producer of the great industrial cities and also the producer in the Dominions, will be reconciled on the sound basis of common interest in a great co‑operation of mutual welfare within the Fascist State. In every sphere Fascist policy alone cuts the knots of modern problems and releases the forces of modern production for the building of a greater nation.
Nowhere is Fascist policy more urgently required than in our stricken countryside. Again Fascism looks not only to the past and present, but also to the future. A healthy and a mighty race must have roots deep in the soil of a native land.
In the English countryside restored to a happy prosperity we will breed that race of men who in the days to come shall hold high the flag of Empire with constructive achievements, which shall be an example and an inspiration to mankind.
“THE IMMENSE MAJESTY OF
PEACE AND AIR STRENGTH
THE SACRED TASK OF BRINGING PEACE TO MANKIND
The Tragic Caricature of Democracy
Ever since the war the peoples have striven for peace. Ever since the war Statesmen have attended an interminable series of international conferences to attain that end. Yet in 1934 we are further away from peace than we were in 1918.
Few who have followed the course of events through that period will deny that simple statement of fact. After nearly fifteen years of effort to secure peace we are further away from that great objective than when we began. The reason is not that nations or even politicians desired war. The reason is that wrong methods have been employed which led to inevitable failure.
Here the methods of democracy have been revealed in broad and tragic caricature. All nations have been treated as the same whether great or small, whether advanced or primitive. The machinery employed has inhibited all effective leadership and has exalted the mob of small powers and interests. Statesmen have worked under the strange illusion that all nations were equally advanced and prepared without leadership or plan to march in step by spontaneous impulse to an undefined millennium.
Instead of adopting practical methods of ordinary business organisation which splits the task into appropriate sections and arranges the effort into ordered departments they have striven by general resolutions and pious wishes to tackle the whole problem at the same time. Such methods of working in conferences and organisations where South American Republics were given the same weight as Powers such as Germany have led to the inevitable result of complete failure.
Nothing else could have been expected from the methods employed which represent the final frenzy of the Democratic mind.
Challenging the Old World
In this sphere as in all others Fascism challenges the old world with different principles, psychology and method.
In foreign affairs as in domestic affairs the principle of leadership and authority must be established if anything is to be done. That leadership must rest with the Great Powers, because to deny their authority is to deny both the material and spiritual realities of Modern Europe. We will not scrap the machinery of the League of Nations, because it is not the Fascist method to scrap existing machinery, but to transform it to new purposes. The League of Nations is a faulty machine which has been in the hands of extremely bad drivers. An amended machinery in the hands of competent drivers can yet make an effective contribution to the Peace of the World.
Within such machinery the leadership of the great nations must be recognised, because without the principle of leadership and authority nothing can be achieved. But the small nations will obtain effective representation in that machinery; their voices will be heard and their rights will be upheld.
In the light of the failure of Democracy, it is clear that the victory of Fascism in Britain is vital to the peace of the world.
A Fascist triumph in Britain will mean that several of the Great Powers of Europe are under Fascist Government, and that the other Great Powers will certainly follow with similar forms of government. Thus will be established a Fascist leadership of Europe under men of like experience, united by the universal brotherhood of Fascism. The strength of that brotherhood in the foundation of lasting peace only Fascists can fully understand.
But the whole world will realise the guarantee of peace which resides in the fact that every Fascist leader in Europe had personal experience in the last war, and so is determined to avoid another. They know, moreover that another war can only result in the collapse of European civilisation and the triumph of their most bitter enemy — the anarchy of Communism.
These are the first guarantees of Faith of personnel and of knowledge which Fascist leadership gives to Peace. Beyond that, the whole structure of Fascist organisation and the aims of Fascist policy provide security to Peace. The concentration of Fascism is on internal achievement, not on external aggression. We shall be too busy rebuilding our own nation to interfere with other people’s business.
End of Suicidal Competition
Previous chapters have already explained that it will be the object of Fascism in Britain to build a Britain as far as possible self‑contained and an Empire entirely self-contained. By that achievement we shall withdraw automatically from the struggle for foreign markets which is among the prime causes of war. We shall end the absurd and suicidal competition of the present system under which all nations strive to sell more to others than they buy from them; an objective which clearly all nations cannot simultaneously attain.
If other nations follow our example and build the self‑contained civilisations which modern science makes possible, the main cause of uar will be removed from the world. There will be nothing to fight about when the struggle for markets no longer exists.
It is true that it will be necessary to readjust, at least, the economic boundaries of Europe to permit some of the smaller nations to achieve a self‑contained civilisation,but this is not a problem which would prove insuperable to a vigorous and united Fascist leadership of Europe.
It will also be necessary to give all nations access to the raw materials they require, but this problem is relatively easy when we consider that a superabundance of raw materials exists in the world to‑day and that the countries producing them are obliged severely to limit their production because they cannot find a market for the glut of their commodities.
The problems of abundance are easier to solve than the problems of scarcity. No one wants to sit on raw materials if he has plenty already for his own use. Certainly no nation will seek to prevent the access of other nations to raw materials once those other nations have ceased to be competitors in the present insane struggle for international markets, which would no longer be necessary.
Thus for every moral and material reason, both idealistic and practical, the Fascist leadership of Europe provides the only certainty of peace. That great hope in turn rests upon the victory of Fascism in Britain. Great is the responsibility which rests upon our Blackshirts; a responsibility far beyond the confines of this country or this age, but a responsibility under which they will not fail.
Once we have established the great fact of Fascist leadership in Europe all lesser problems fall into their place and are relatively easy to solve. Disarmament will be easily settled in Fascist Europe. Mussolini has again and again offered to disarm if other nations would do the same. His proposals to that end are more far‑reaching than those of any other statesman. None of us would have any reason to carry heavy arms against other Fascist nations. If all disarm, the relative security of each remains the same and the real security will be far greater than it is to‑day.
Collectively the leading Fascist nations would guarantee the peace of Europe with precise definition of obligation in place of the vast and vague commitments which are such a menace to the peace of Britain under Democratic statesmanship. Never again, under any circumstances, will British soldiers fight except in defence of British soil. Subject, however, to that condition, we would enter with other Fascist Governments into collective guarantees of peace, which we should be in a position to make thoroughly effective.
Enough of Pacts
In accordance with our Fascist method, every commitment into which we enter will be precisely defined and limited. We have had enough of the Locarno Treaties and Pacts of Conservative and Socialist politicians which can send British armies abroad in pursuit of quarrels in which we have no interest and the rights of which are as loosely defined as the obligations resting on Britain.
We have had enough of the slop of Democracy in Foreign as in Domestic affairs. We are no more prepared to enter into undefined commitments which may lead to the slaughter of our people in alien quarrels than we are prepared to leave Britain defenceless in an armed Europe. A Fascist Government in Britain will immediately increase British Air strength to the level of the strongest Power in Europe and will put the Fleet in proper condition. The reduction of the Air strength of Britain in an armed Europe is a supreme betrayal of the Nation by the old Parties for which we will hold them to account. Fascism will immediately mobilise our resources to achieve equality of strength in the Air in the shortest possible time that rapid organisation can secure.
But our aim and our ambition will be not to increase armaments, but to reduce them in company with all other nations within a Europe made secure by the “immense majesty of Fascist Peace.” We stretch out our hands to our brother Fascists of the world. We shall not be long before we join them in the sacred task of building on the rock foundation of Universal Fascism the enduring Peace of Mankind.
THE BETRAYAL OF INDIA
A CORPORATE SYSTEM IS MORE SUITABLE TO
Fascism Will Bring Peace and Tranquillity
THE problem of India presents a record of muddle and betrayal. All the old Parties are equally guilty of this surrender. We challenge them all whether they accept this “White Paper” of the White Flag or disturb the slumber of Conservative conferences with minor amendments.
Fascist policy is clear cut. We have a right to be in India and we intend to stay there. We have more than a right; we have a duty to stay there. We have a right because modern India owes everything to British rule. Irrigation, railways, schools, universities, hospitals, impartial justice, every amenity which makes modern life possible for any section of the inhabitants of India was conferred by the energy of British Government.
These achievements are denounced by a tiny minority of professional agitators as alien rule. The forefathers of those who thus denounce us descended on India in successive waves of Northern conquerors. They brought not the constructive and beneficent achievements of British rule but the atrocities and rapine of the conqueror to the original inhabitants of India whom they practically obliterated.
Therefore our historic right to be in India is the same as the historic right of all our predecessors; the power of original conquest. The difference is that we have used that power for the purposes of humanity and construction and not for purposes of oppression and destruction. Thus we claim the same historic right to be in India as those “Indians” who denounce us, with a difference that our right is fortified by the humane spirit and constructive achievement of the modern world.
A consideration of our duty is equally clear. India is not one nation but many nations; not one community but many communities. Over 250 different languages and dialects are spoken by the peoples of that sub‑continent, and few of them can understand each other unless they have learned to speak English.
Internally India is rent by communal differences, which in the absence of British control lead directly to massacre and crime. Externally and even within her own borders India is menaced in the north by warlike tribes only too willing to repeat the long record of Indian history by a destructive descent on the softer peoples of the Southern Sun.
The Duty of Great Britain
Any withdrawal of British authority can only result in widespread destruction of life accompanied by unthinkable atrocities and ending in a relapse into barbarism. In such conditions the duty of Britain is as clear as her right; that duty is to remain and to govern.
Thus we challenge fundamentally the premise of all the old Parties of the State which contemplates by varying stages and degrees the surrender of British authority. Under Fascism, law and order will be vigorously maintained by British Government. Authority in administration will not be diminished but increased.
For that authority is necessary to solve the real problem of India, which is economic. In the past Britain’s contribution to Indian development has been largely economic achievement. In recent times that work has slowed up by reason of the political struggle.
British Government has been too busy answering the lawyers’ points of professional politicians to get on with its job. Economic construction in India depends absolutely on strong government.
At every point it is held up by religious superstition and custom. The fertile Indian plain is cultivated by archaic wooden implements instead of by steam ploughs because the hereditary land system maintains as sacred the landmarks of the individual cultivator.
Cutting Through the Tangle
As I wrote in The Greater Britain, “Steam ploughs are needed to cut through the Indian plains and produce fertility, but they would also cut through a tangle of hereditary landowning interests, and produce prejudice and agitation which the present British Government would not dare to face.”
At every turn the economic reformer is inhibited by religious custom and convention which condemns an illiterate and superstition‑ridden population to direst poverty. The conquerors of the past broke the idols, looted the temples and enslaved the population.
Britain will preserve inviolate and intact the sacred realities of Indian religion, but will override custom and convention where it is necessary to release the people from poverty. Such reorganisation demands not weaker but stronger government. It means that government must cease to argue with lawyers and must enlist the services of economic technicians.
Here lies the real outlet for the energies of patriotic and educated Indians in constructive economic works and in overcoming by an enlightened propaganda the forbidding prejudices of their less educated countrymen. In fact the energies of India as the energies of Britain must be transferred from the political sphere of talk to the economic sphere of action.
If India must look to the West in place of developing her own traditional culture, let her at least acquire not the old clothes but the new clothes of the West.
Let us end this ridiculous conspiracy of English and Indian lawyers to foist on unfortunate Indians Western parliamentary institutions at the very moment that the West discards them.
At the moment when every advanced nation in Europe is turning from the old parliamentary institutions, in order to live and to prosper in a scientific age, our little professional talkers of both nations try to persuade all Indians who can understand their arguments to adopt a proved failure.
What a sorry end to the great record of Britain in India to sell them, as the price of our surrender, this old broken‑down machine just as we discard it. That would indeed be an act of treachery for which future generations of Indians would bitterly hold us responsible.
We pay the new generation of India the tribute of believing that their new minds will not so easily be deluded. We invite them to join with us in building in India a Corporate system as we build it in Britain. That system is far more suited to Indian history and tradition than the Western parliamentary system even at its zenith.
In the countryside it will rest on the village Panchayat in an election of universal franchise in which all Indians, literate or illiterate, will be represented.
Thus the voice of India will not be confined as under the White Paper proposals to a tiny literate class, but will include the vast masses of the Indian population. From that basis we will build successive tiers of Indian representation until the voice of India is heard in the inner councils of government.
In the towns, representation will rest on both an occupational and a communal basis, and again the voice of the industrial minority of India will be heard and represented. The co‑operation of all Indians capable of serving their country will be sought in the great work of economic regeneration.
With such assistance strong government can cut through the labyrinth of interests to an immense increase in the standard of life. The grip of the money‑lender who holds down the peasant will be broken and agricultural banks will replace his power.
Co‑operative marketing will follow extended irrigation in the sale of produce increased by modern methods of production. The science of the West will be linked with the spiritual urge of the East in building an India released from the present horrors of poverty and suffering.
In no country in the world is it more urgently necessary to establish the reality of economic liberty in place of the illusion of political liberty. Fascism alone can release the Indian masses from the grinding slavery which they suffer to‑day. Nothing but the will of man is necessary to raise India from the depths to the heights.
In Fascism the will of man, proudly conscious of the past and facing the future with an iron determination to rise to greater heights, will bring to India a peace and a prosperity within which she may pursue with a new tranquillity her age‑old mission of the Spirit from which the West still has so much to learn.
FASCISM CHALLENGES PRESENT
MOBILISING ABILITY TO THE SERVICE OF THE NATION
Man Must Master Machinery
Those who have read so far will realise that Fascism is based on a new philosophy of life. We challenge existing civilisation in the practical economic sphere on the grounds of its material failure. We advance very concrete proposals for the building of a new structure of civilisation based on the realities of the modern age. But the challenge of Fascism goes far deeper than the material world. We challenge the basic principles of the old order and the system of life on which it rests.
We seek to establish a new ideal of public service and a new system of authority which rests on merit. To understand fully the difference between Fascist philosophy and the principles which animate the old Parties of the State it is necessary to review some of the origins of present political thought.
Conservatism can be excluded from that review for all practical purposes because it rests entirely on the maintenance of privilege. The philosophy of “the right” does not go much deeper than the maintenance of the interest of those who “have” against the interests of those who “have not.” In that system of privilege the possession of a grandfather is more important than the possession of an intellect. Position in the State derives not from merit but from class.
Great Vested Interests
Under all the blare of patriotism which it uses for political purposes, but surrenders in national policy, Conservatism always stands solid to maintain the privilege of whatever class or interest happens at the time to be dominant in the State. It is the Party of the great vested interests and the dominant interest of to‑day is International Finance, whose philosophy has roots that go no deeper than Wall Street.
The other instrument of Class is the Party of the “Left” which embraces both Socialism and the remnants of Liberalism. The philosophy of both is derived from the initial challenge to the system of privilege which Conservatism has defended through recent generations. That challenge was the French Revolution, and both Liberalism and Socialism derive their philosophy from the French writers who heralded that event and moulded its thought.
To the philosophy of the French Revolution Socialism subsequently added the economic doctrines of the German Jew, Karl Marx. But Marxism is essentially a material creed, denying all spiritual urge. Every motive of man, according to Marx, and every movement of humanity has an economic and material origin. This may be true of some Socialists, but we deny that it is true of the normal Englishman.
If a donkey jumps across a ditch it is legitimate to conclude that the animal has observed a particularly luxurious thistle on the other side. If a man jumps across a ditch we are disposed to believe that he has another motive. The movement of man throughout the ages has far more often been derived from a spiritual than from an economic inspiration.
The crime of Socialist philosophy has been to add the materialism of the German Jew to the existing fallacies of Liberal philosophy. The origins of Liberal thought and method, with this materialist addition, were taken over by British Socialists to a greater extent than by their Continental prototypes.
It was idle to appeal to the British people on purely material grounds, so, in a remarkable poverty of original thought, Socialist philosophy in this country continued in the doctrines of the eighteenth‑century Liberalism, which in turn was borrowed from the French Revolutionary writers.
Chief among them and more conspicuous in the formation of Liberal thought even than Voltaire was the visionary Jean Jacques Rousseau.
From him were derived the equalitarian doctrines which have inspired both Liberalism and Socialism in Great Britain and have formed the basis of the Democratic conception throughout the world. Rousseau, of course, like most original thinkers, never said anything quite so foolish as his disciples would have us believe. His attack was delivered against the privilege system of France under the Bourbons, which upheld an effete aristocracy and denied all promotion by merit.
In effect he was preaching equality of opportunity and the “career open to talent.” His followers have distorted his teaching into a doctrine of the equality of all men in face of all problems and all situations. All men are equally competent to settle all questions, and from this it follows that the only way to settle any question is by the counting of noses and the award of the issue to the majority, irrespective of competence or merit.
Perversion of Rousseau
This perversion of Rousseau’s doctrines has become the basis of the Democratic system. It is not, of course universally applied to modern life. A skilled engineer engaged in an intricate mechanical process would quickly send about their business a talkative committee of people totally ignorant of engineering problems who, after a brief general debate, sought to instruct him in his business.
The Neo‑Rousseau equalitarian doctrine is reserved for the yet more intricate and expert business of government. Under Democratic theory of the State the most profound and delicate questions of government can only be settled by an indiscriminate counting of noses after a three weeks’ bawling match at the door of a public‑house, which is euphemistically described as a General Election.
It is not surprising that the result is the kind of government with which Great Britain is now afflicted.
Equality of Opportunity
In the long perspective of history the Democratic system is a strange perversion of the original and sensible contention that position in the State should rest on merit and not on privilege. It is the duty of any sane system of government to secure equality of opportunity in the sense that all men shall have an equal chance within the system to rise to the top and that promotion shall be by merit alone.
But it is beyond the power of any system of government to secure for all men equality of opportunity in the sense of an equality of gifts. Original gifts of mind or of muscle rest with a higher power than Government, but it rests with the well‑governed State to devise a system whereby great abilities are developed for the service of the State.
Thus Fascism stands on the one hand against the privilege of Conservatism and on the other hand against the democratic fallacies of Liberalism and Socialism. The expert questions of the modern age will not be resolved either by the dead hand of privilege or by the ill‑considered decision of a miscellaneous mob without expert knowledge of them.
They will be settled within the machinery of the Corporate State by trained and expert minds under a Government which enjoys the confidence of the people and expresses through the power which they accord to it their will to action and achievement.
Thus Fascism challenges the philosophic fallacies of the old world Parties with a new theory of the State which mobilises ability to the service of the Nation and thus harnesses the power of modern science to the reconstruction of civilisation. But such material achievement can only rest upon the profound negation of the German-Jewish materialism of Socialism which is but the obverse of the selfish privilege of Conservatism. Fascism realises the spiritual reality of things.
The appeal of Fascism is to the spirit, for it summons men to labour and to sacrifice for something greater than themselves.
The achievement of Fascism will liberate the soul of man by his victory over material environment. For not until mind has triumphed over matter will the spirit be free to turn to the eternal realities of life. Not until man has mastered the machine and the machine has mastered material limitations will the soul of man be free to soar beyond the fetters of materialism.
For that mighty struggle the summons of Fascism is to the spirit and to the spirit alone. This is the generation dedicated to the conquest of materialism in the culminating struggle of the ages High is the privilege and great is the ordeal. But come what may, we know we fight that the soul of man may march on in freedom and in splendour to the heights of which we dream.
FASCISM AS A SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT
LEADERSHIP WITH THE CONSENT OF THE PEOPLE
The Principle of Individual Responsibility
Before concluding this book on Fascist Policy, I will summarise briefly the Fascist structure and system of government to afford a comprehensive idea of its operation.
When the nation confers power on Fascism it will do so under no illusion as to what Fascism will do. We ask the nation to give us great power with its eyes open for purposes which we define with precision.
We will use the power it gives to carry out the policy of action which this country has long demanded by methods which we exactly describe in advance. No one who has studied the present position of the Nation will deny that action is necessary. No one who has followed the proposals of Fascist policy will deny that authority is necessary in Government to carry them out.
Few will deny that measures less far‑reaching would be ineffective to meet the national situation. If the Nation wants action it must give the Government power to act. That power will be given by the people at an election and not taken from them by force. We certainly do not shrink from the word “Dictatorship,” but Fascist Dictatorship will be conferred by the Nation to achieve ends which the people have long desired to secure. When our opponents speak of Dictatorship they mean Tyranny — when we speak of Dictatorship we mean Leadership.
In a definition which I have often given — “Fascism is not Dictatorship in the old sense of the word, which means government against the will of the people. Fascism is Dictatorship in the modern sense of the word, which means government armed by the people with power to overcome problems which they desire shall be solved.” Fascism, in fact, is not tyranny, but leadership with the consent of the Nation along the path of action which it has long desired to travel. None can deny this who follow our practical proposals in detail and in sequence.
A United Team
In the first instance we seek to win power at a General Election by legal and constitutional means. When we secure a Fascist majority we will use that power to confer on Government complete power of action by order. That power will be used by Government to reconstruct the industries and life of the Nation during the legal period of that Parliament or until new elections are held on the new franchise which will shortly be described.
Party warfare will be brought to an end and every energy of the country will be devoted to the task of national reconstruction. Parliament will be brought together at regular intervals to review the work of the Government in short sessions. M.P.s will be armed with practical points of suggestion and criticism gained in actual administrative experience, for the whole network of local administration will be swept away and replaced by a system in which a local Fascist M.P. from the area will be the responsible executive officer of local government.
He will be assisted by a locally elected council in which one responsible chief will preside over each department who will be responsible in turn to the local executive officer. This system will sweep away the present jumble of committees and will concentrate and specialise the work of councils on the principle of individual responsibility. When failure occurs, the people for the first time will be able to put their finger on responsibility for failure.
Thus from local areas to the central parliament the principle of individual responsibility will be maintained and criticism and suggestion will be informed, direct and effective. Government and Local Authorities will pull together as one united team in which each individual knows his function and shoulders his responsibility. At the same time every part of this executive instrument will have been elected by the people and assigned its responsibility.
This, in brief, is the instrument of executive government by which Fascism will carry Britain through the great transition from the old civilisation to the new.
At the end of the legal period of five years, or in a shorter period, a new election will be held, on an occupational and not on a geographical franchise.
A doctor will vote as a doctor, a steel‑worker as a steel‑worker, a woman clerk as a woman clerk, a mother as a mother within the Corporation charged with the care of mother and child, an ex‑service man as an ex‑service man within his own Corporation.
All will vote within their own trade on interest, on subjects with which they are familiar for personnel they know well. Fascism claims that this system affords a better representation of the people than the orgy of baby-kissing and bazaar opening by candidates dumped in a locality by a Party caucus, which is at present called a General Election to express the will of the people.
Thus a technical Parliament suitable to the modern and scientific age will be elected to assist Government by its advice on every aspect of national life.
Thereafter Government will be dependent not on a vote of Parliament but on a direct vote of the people.
At regular intervals the life and policy of the Government will be submitted to the country for a “Yes” or “No” decision by universal franchise. Government will no longer depend on the party manœuvres and shifting intrigues of Parliament, but on the direct will of the people directly expressed.
That is why we claim that the people will exercise a more direct control over Government than they exercise at present through a Parliament elected on the present Party system, which in practice is a competition of promises in opposition that are invariably betrayed in office.
That Party system of betrayal and inaction will be brought to an end for ever by the fact that the life of a Government will rest on the direct vote of the people, and by the whole nature of the new Parliament, which will be technical and not political.
Therefore the nation in voting Fascism into power will deliberately enter a new civilisation in which the Government will be given power to suppress Party warfare, which it will certainly exercise.
Realities of Fascist Civilisation
In the event of the Government being defeated on a direct vote of the people it will be reconstituted exactly as at present. His Majesty will send for Ministers in whom he believes the nation will have confidence in a new vote. At present he sends for Ministers whom he believes will command a majority in Parliament or who may command a majority in the country at a new election.
The constitutional position and the responsibility of the constitutional Monarch will remain precisely the same. The only difference will be that in all cases the fate of the new Government will be submitted direct to the nation and not to Parliament. But a government which thus commands the support of the nation will be given power to act free from the trammels of parliamentary obstruction.
For these are the realities of Fascist civilisation. Government shall have authority and the instruments of government shall be technical and not political. The expert principle will be carried further in the replacement of the present House of Lords by a second Chamber or Senate of specialists. In that Chamber will be represented a Council of Corporations who will synthesise in a national manner the technical work of the industrial Corporations whose constitution and operations have been described in earlier chapters.
A Chamber of Experts
No Corporation will be unrepresented in the Senate which will also comprise representatives of the Dominions Crown colonies, India, religious thought, the fighting services, civil service, education, authorities on foreign affairs, and those who have rendered the State conspicuous service.
To be a member of this Senate will be an honour, and the Government will rely upon it for advice in great national and imperial issues. It will function as a chamber of experts and not as a debating assembly. Government will be able to call upon it for a panel of experts to work out the details of any subject in which it requires the advice of specialists.
Such, in brief survey, is the structure of Fascist government, interwoven with which will be the activity of the great industrial corporations, regulating industrial life and progressively increasing the standard of living.
A Revolutionary Conception
This new instrument of effective government is a revolutionary conception, but it will be attained by legal means and through constitutional methods. The great merit of the unwritten Constitution of Great Britain in the past has been its flexibility and power of adaptation to fresh facts.
Fascism believes that it is not beyond the genius of the British people in the present age to move with order, peace and legality to the new system of action which the problems of this age demand. Without Fascism the achievement of the totalitarian and Corporate State is impossible.
The machinery must not only work, it must also live, and it can only live by the inspiration of Fascism. The new creed comes to make all things new, and above all this means a change of spirit. We may devise the most perfect machinery of government and of industry. All this will count for nothing without the life and spirit of organised Fascism.
Our disciplined manhood winning through struggle and ordeal to triumph will provide the force and the spirit that shall prevail over all material things.
VIGIL BEFORE BATTLE
A MESSAGE TO BLACKSHIRTS, CHRISTMAS 1933
The Marching Legions Move Forward to a New Day
The keeping of Christmas is an old English institution, and Fascists cherish old traditions that serve a good purpose in our national life. It is a break in the struggle and the “tears of things” dedicated to children and the home.
As such we welcome it and turn aside for a moment even from the work of Fascism. But to Fascists there is something different in the Christmas spirit; something of that difference which I recall of Christmas in France in 1914 and 1915. To us it is only a break in the mission of struggle. For others, the long laughter and languid ease of a protracted Christmas; not for us. We have something else to do in the world, a task which cannot wait on time.
The slow, soft days are behind us, perhaps for ever. Hard days and dark nights ahead, no relaxing of the muscle of mind and will. It is at once our privilege and our ordeal to live in a dynamic period in the history of man. The tents of ease are struck and the soul of man once more is on the march. Do we envy those who have lived in the lotus moments of the past?
Do those of my generation regret their own short youth; that brief bright moment between storm and storm? No! we regret nothing, not even our own past. Those who have lived in the happy valleys of blissful, peaceful periods in the history of the world have never known our depths, but they have also never known our heights.
They have never stood on the topmost pinnacle of sacrifice where thunder threatens and lightning strikes. They have never felt on their brow the beckoning wind of the future, nor seen with their eyes the land that is to come. They have shared happiness with the animals of the field, but they have never felt the fierce fires of danger and of suffering urging forward and upward the spirit of humanity.
Therefore we would not change with them even if we could. Hard is our road, but on our march we feel the rhythm of the universe. Let us count it a privilege to live in an age when England requires that great things shall be done. For Fascists stand where stood the heroes of our past while fools played and laughed.
Let us keep these moments as a vigil before battle, of the full meaning of which we alone are aware. Let us give to the children what is their due: the happiness of the moment. But let us privately prepare within our hearts for the winning of the world in which we desire them to live.
We do not forget, even for an instant, the thousands of our fellow‑countrymen and women for whom Christmas is not even a break in despair.
Our minds travel back to the Christmases of “Merrie England” at the dawn of our nation’s greatness; then forward to the Christmas of the future, to a nation reborn, revitalised and clad in the glittering panoply of a period in which the will of man and the genius of modern science have triumphed over material environment.
Fascism in our will and spirit already bridges the gulf of the ages. The romantic traditions of the past are linked to the scientific realities of the future. Such thoughts once born can never die. Now to their inspiration the flower of our manhood rallies to‑day. Through the length and breadth of the land the vital flame is moving and thousands follow in the new faith.
Strong arms bear forward the mighty conception of Britain reborn and united. Indomitable spirits declare that come what may this thing shall be. The light spreads over England at Christmas, 1933, and the marching legions in their ordered strength move forward to a new and Greater Day.
Printed in Great Britain by R. Clay & Sons, Ltd., Bungay, Suffolk.
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