I’ve organized the above points into a straight-forward outline below:
- Communism: aggressively ideological, anti-propertarian internationalist socialism.
- Communism is intensely – arguably, cripplingly – committed to an ideological structure. This commitment has, in the past, rendered communism a rolling catastrophe whenever it has achieved real political power. This is because past visions – such as Stalinism or Maoism – have demanded that facts fit ideology rather than adjust ideology to adapt to facts. This demand has expressed itself in the form of brutally repressive police states that brook no deviation from the State’s cant, and led to “economic plans” that have left millions dead of starvation.
- Nevertheless, communism is springing from a legitimate criticism of the dominant forms of order in the world. Laborers and the working classes have, as a matter of indisputable fact, been savagely and universally oppressed by those in power. So there is a genuine ideal of a better world at work here, however horrifyingly it has ultimately translated itself into real world action. Perhaps that is a key to actually working with and for communism, by keeping it as a minor party in a parliamentarian system with no real hope at power. It would then function as a gadfly, and could serve as a check on the pretensions and pomposity of others.
- Communism is thoroughly internationalist in character; the heroes of its story are the workers of the world. As such, it is philosophically opposed to all forms of parochial closures that set aside some groups as “outsiders,” as “them.” In other words, racism, sexism, and the like are nominally opposed in all of their forms. Again, how this gets expressed in actual practice is typically short of the ideal.
- Fascism: a non-ideological, nationalist/racist program for achieving hegemonic domination and power built upon a populist base whipped up by fantasies of a cult of victimhood.
- Fascism is simply born evil at the start. As Robert O. Paxton has pointed out, Fascism has no ideology, no underlying philosophy. It is exclusively a program for seizing unfettered power. This is why it inevitably aligns itself with capital and against labor, because capital is where the power is held (which labor and communism are trying to take back to themselves.)
- Fascism is nationalist and racist to its core. This is necessarily the case, since its populist base is energized and ginned up with vicious lies about how they are being threatened and oppressed by some group of outsiders: blacks, Jews, Muslims, migrant workers, and so on. This cult of victimhood is one of the keys to Fascism’s hold on power, as it unites its core group of mass supporters in a fantasy of dangerous outsiders while keeping them blind to the fact that their liberties are being trampled in their populist stampede to hand over all power to a political cabal that is pulling the Fascist strings.