Twisted Sisters: Marxism and Fascism

Marxism and fascism – twins separated at birth:

One common feature of tyrannical governments is state ownership and confiscatory powers. This is a hallmark of both communist states and fascist states. I will explore this in more detail in a moment, but in order to show that this is not just a theoretical discussion, let me mention a frightening case of this actually happening here in Australia.

In the leftist, socialist ACT, the statists there have decided they will take over a Catholic hospital. It has various cheap excuses for this, but it is really because the hospital thinks healthcare does not include murder – whether of the unborn or the elderly. So the government, led by chief minister Andrew Barr, has decided to nationalise Calvary Public Hospital with almost no discussion or consultation.

The Archbishop of Canberra-Goulburn Christopher Prowse said this about the Soviet-style capture: “It’s a very sad day when governments can simply decide to mount a take-over of any enterprise they like without any justification.” Yes, and we have seen all this before.

While leftists try to tell us that Hitler and the Nazis were a bunch of conservatives, capitalists and probably even Christians, better minds know that the National Socialists were just that: socialists, who had modelled themselves on the secular Communist tyranny that preceded it.

Many authorities can be appealed to here. Let me start with political science professor, Waller Newell. His Cambridge University Press volume Tyrants: Power, Justice and Terror (2016, 2019), makes it clear that Nazism was a socialist movement, and not some capitalist right-wing affair. That claim he says was invented by leftists in the 1940s, and it “persists to this day.” Instead, National Socialism “was above all a millenarian revolutionary movement like Bolshevism.” He continues:

Thinking people recognized that they were two variants of the same movement, “the revolution of nihilism” to use Rauschning’s term, and people in both movements also recognized this about each other. (Recall Von Ribbentrop’s feeling right at home among Stalin’s henchmen). But many people on the Left were embarrassed by this similarity, just as they were embarrassed by the Hitler-Stalin Pact. Their response was to convince themselves (who can say with what degree of sincerity?) that there was no resemblance whatever between these two in fact closely kindred movements, claiming instead that Nazism equaled the naked face of capitalism stripped of its pretensions to democracy. That way, they could paint the Hitler-Stalin Pact as the Soviet Union’s morally justified need to fend off the Nazi threat so as to safeguard the gains of socialism, instead of what it really was – two wolves agreeing to devour the sheep before turning on each other for the final showdown between their two totalitarian world-views. In reality, the Nazis detested capitalism every bit as much as they did Bolshevism, equating both with the “Jewish world conspiracy” that could don either hat at its convenience in its mission to destroy the wholeness of the people with its materialistic values….


The Nazis regarded Bolshevism as a false version of socialism, which they believed should be nationalistic and patriotic, not international. But they themselves believed in a “classless society” (as Hitler’s speeches in The Triumph of the Will stress repeatedly) and central planning (aping Soviet vocabulary, they had their own “five-year plan”)….


Nazism’s mission was based on the mobilization of mass hatred and the destruction of all traditional social, religious, and cultural bonds. In its drive to complete the collectivization of all social forces within “the community of destiny” – a process they called “coordination” (Gleichschaltung) – National Socialism’s true forbear was the Jacobin Terror and its true counterpart was Bolshevism’s similar agenda for destruction in Russia. Just as Stalin invented “the kulaks” as the enemies of happiness and peace whose extermination would bring about utopia, so Hitler invented “the Jews.”

As to the reckless claim that Hitler and the Nazis were some sort of Christians, Newell quickly dismisses that nonsense. As mentioned above, just like the Communists, the destruction of religion was a primary goal of the Nazis:

[W]hat sustained the regime even in the face of certain defeat was the millenarian utopian vision of National Socialism, very different from the mere Great Power militarism that motivated the Kaiser in WW I. As Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels had put it years before: “National Socialism is a religion. One day soon (it) will be the religion of all Germans. . . That is my gospel.” The central rite of that religion, its chief sacrament, was the removal of the Jewish people from the face of the earth so as to usher in the 1,000 year “National Socialist world blessing.”

Consider also Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism (Doubleday, 2007). He carefully documents how Hitler and the Nazis were clearly of the left. For example, Hitler “despised the bourgeoisie, traditionalists, aristocrats, monarchists, and all believers in the established order”.

Moreover, the party was “in favour of universal education, guaranteed employment, increased entitlements for the aged, the expropriation of land without compensation, the nationalization of industry, the abolition of market-based lending … the expansion of health services, and the abolition of child labor” – hardly a right-wing agenda. As he states in the book’s Introduction:

[F]ascism, properly understood, is not a phenomenon of the right at all. Instead, it is, and always has been, a phenomenon of the left. This fact—an inconvenient truth if there ever was one—is obscured in our time by the equally mistaken belief that fascism and communism are opposites. In reality, they are closely related, historical competitors for the same constituents, seeking to dominate and control the same social space.

Image of Wokeshevism: Critical Theories and the Tyrant Left
Wokeshevism: Critical Theories and the Tyrant Left by Zimmermann, Augusto (Editor), Forrester, Joshua (Editor) Amazon logo

Australian law professor Augusto Zimmermann, in his chapter in Wokeshevism that he and Joshua Forrester edited (Connor Court, 2023), discusses the Marxist roots of Nazi-Fascism. He looks at how Mussolini’s fascism “grew up on the soil of Italian Marxism.” As for the Nazis, the party

was established as a mass movement to bring together the ideals of nationalism and socialism. . . . Besides anti-Semitism, this [1920] manifesto promised government expropriation of land without compensation; nationalisation of all basic sectors of the national industry; the abolition of market-based lending; and the confiscation of all income unearned by work. In a speech on Labour’s Day on 1st May 1927, Hitler declared: “We are socialists. We are enemies of today’s capitalistic system…”

He continues: “There are, therefore, important commonalities between Nazism and Marxism. It is patently wrong to assume the Marxism is the polar opposite of Communism, or that the Nazis were ‘reactionary capitalist counter-revolutionaries’. As a matter of fact, the Nazis were committed socialists…”

I hope to do a proper review of this vital volume in the days ahead, so stay tuned.

For those of you not able or willing to pursue this further in the three books I mention above, let me finish with two quotes from an article on this matter by Bradley J. Birzer. Titled, “Socialists and Fascists Have Always Been Kissing Cousins,” he says this:

That the National Socialists embraced socialism is factually accurate. Though they did not nationalize to the extent the Leninists wanted, they did nationalize very vital industry in Germany, even if by outright intimidation rather than through the law. In his personal diaries, Joseph Goebbels wrote in late 1925: “It would be better for us to end our existence under Bolshevism than to endure slavery under capitalism.” Only a few months later, he continued, “I think it is terrible that we and the Communists are bashing in each other’s heads.” Whatever the state of the rivalry between the two camps, Goebbels claimed, the two forces should ally and conquer. He even reached out to a communist in a personal letter: “We are not really enemies,” he offered.

Then he writes:

Just as T.S. Eliot saw in Hitler and Stalin two sides of the same coin, so too did his close friend and ally, Christopher Dawson. In one of Dawson’s finest pieces, written in the immediate aftermath of the World War II, “The Left-Right Fallacy” (published in The Catholic Mind), Dawson rightly noted that there is no left and no right; there is only man and anti-man. That is, the divide is not horizontal but vertical. “The tactics of totalitarianism,” he wrote, “are to weld every difference of opinion and tradition and every conflict of economic interests into an absolute ideological opposition which disintegrates society into hostile factions bent on destroying one another.” The so-called and false divisions between a left and right, then, are “a perfect god-send to the forces of destruction.” Such a sophomoric notion of left and right becomes a blunt weapon, used to beat any and all opposition, while in actuality separating the human person from the human person, clothing each not in glory but in wretched rags of chaos and deceit. The results, Dawson realized, could only be confusion, disintegration, degradation, violence, inhumanity, hatred, and suspicion, disgracing even “a tribe of cannibals.”

I began this piece by mentioning the expropriation of a Catholic hospital here in Australia by big brother statists. Be warned: we will be seeing much more of this in the days ahead, unless we wake up fast and start resisting these twin twisted sisters of Marxism and fascism which are both making a comeback today.

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14 Replies to “Twisted Sisters: Marxism and Fascism”

  1. Spot on, Bill.

    Marxism and Fascism are not polar opposites, but share many features in common.

    The late Australian-born Cambridge scholar George G. Watson (1927–2013), in 1984, famously observed:

    “Lenin and Hitler remind one of two rivals in love with the same woman — detesting each other not because they disagree, but precisely because they agree so completely on what in all the world it is that matters most. And what mattered most for both was to replace plutocracy — or capitalism (what Marx often identified as ‘Jewish greed’) — with the rule of a new revolutionary elite that was dogmatically pure.”

    [G. Watson, “Was Hitler a Marxist? Reflections about certain affinities”, Encounter magazine (London), Vol. 63, No. 5, December 1984].

  2. Thanks Bill, not at all being a student of politics, and their (to me) mystifying terms and definitions, that always felt like trying to catch a wet cake of soap, this is a real help.

    Avi’s report on the Melbourne fracas the other day, shows the same understanding but from a both more violent and more humorous set of incidents.

    The threatened take over of Calvary Public Hospital is probably criminal, but it must be said that along with many other similar institutions, esp hospitals, aged care, and schools, that have reveled in government largess for decades, they have probably sold themselves out anyway.

    CPH I suppose, might be able to free themselves from government control, finance and de facto ownership but it would require a huge change to every business model and every clinical practice that they use.

    We are now at the stage where many things need to be freed from the government teat if we are to survive the culture wars, but rescuing CPH just now, is too big a project I fear.

    We are only just beginning to get used to the idea that it might be best to pay for our medical bills up front and avoid bulk billing and medicare. That is to say little about pharmaceuticals and about schooling, and even less about pensions and aged care.

  3. Bill, I suspect that the petition is intended to be signed by ACT residents. Nevertheless, the planned takeover is terrible. I have been told that the public hospital system, such as that in Woden (south of the big lake in Canberra) is very poor.

    It is suspected that the local authorities don’t really care about the quality of medical care delivered to patients. Calvary is much better than what you might get at the hospital in Woden.

  4. Bill,
    Even so, this matter of Calvary Hospital is just one of many examples of the use of government power to mess up systems that worked reasonably well in recent times even up to this day. Similar observations apply elsewhere in Australia and even in other Western countries across the globe.

    The quality of the opposition parties really leaves a great deal to be desired. Thus, the powers in Australia that be (mostly ALP with some input from the Greens and a few others) get away with some frankly terrible policies.

  5. People need to wake up very soon. Unfortunately the Australian Labor approach to socialism is in fact very closely aligned with the NAZI approach where the government is happy to assimilate business into the socialist fold and welcome industry leaders as part of the socialist elite just as long as they can be controlled and unfortunately the Lib/Nats are currently not far behind albeit less skilled in this manipulation.

    I prefer to distance myself from terminology such as right and left wing which are based originally simply on where people physically sat in a particular political debate because it detracts from facing the real issues. Australia was prosperous when it embraced private ownership, property rights and lowish taxes – supposedly extreme right-wing ideals yet we had an excellent, pubically-owned electricity grid, the physically largest in the world, which provided cheap and reliable energy which not only supported free enterprise, it was used in houses to keep people warm,to cook and in hospitals to keep people alive etc. etc. – supposedly an extreme left-wing position but I said, at the time, that privatisation would only substantially increase electricity costs and I believe I was shown to be more than correct. Increased energy costs only serve to limit free enterprise just like increased taxes do.

    In short, the point is that, without understanding the underlying economics both “wings” are incorrect and simply detract from rational discussion of the individual problems and situations and factors of justice involved. You are correct, Bill, that both political wings were socialist in nature and both were opposed to basic principles of justice and free enterprise and while Nazism made claims to tradition they were traditions which predated and were not related to Christianity. Not making this distinction is the fatal flaw in arguments against supposed right-wing approaches.

    The other large point of modern confusion is opposition to nationalism based on the obviously false idea that Nazism was purely nationalist. It really should be blatantly obvious that both Nazism and Communism are globalist and tyranical in nature and the only defence we have against tyranny is democracy which can only work within the confines of the legalities of a nation. Both right and left wing socialism work to overturn basic human rights, freedom and democracy. Once you undermine national sovereignty you undermine any hope of preventing tyranny and inevitably suppress the possibility of future free enterprise and basic individual rights.

    The analogy with ancient Israel is how God allocated land within the nation to the various tribes and specified tithes to support the Levitical tribe, which is a distributive approach but then specified laws regarding how free enterprise was to progress and property rights were to be enforced with minimal government interference except in issues of justice.

    Yes the ACT government is tyrannical in nature and the fact that the ACT repeatedly votes in such an obviously extreme, corrupt and tyrannical government is powerful evidence of just how extremely corrupt the Australian bureaucracy is. We certainly need to pray and do what we can about this dictatorial action. As usual, socialism is attempting to exploit what Christian culture has provided and override fundamental rights.

  6. I should probably add that the only reason I can see why Labor would be significantly increasing immigration while simultaneously cutting back on the infrastructure needed to support that increase is because they want to create the conditions for an underclass of serfs to serve the socialist elite.

  7. Dear Bill,

    Thank you for the article. It is my understanding that the political spectrum is shaped like a horseshoe with Nazism and Communism at either end so in actual fact there is not much difference between the two forms of dictatorship. What would be funny if it wasn’t so serious is the hypocritical commotion about banning the Nazi salute in Victoria when the Andrews government is about as leftist and woke as you can possibly get.

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