Communism, Fascism or Democracy?

Communism, Fascism or Democracy?

Communism, Fascism or Democracy?

Communism, Fascism or Democracy?

Excerpt

In any discussion of political principles today the true meaning of the word democracy is a major point of controversy. Capitalism, communism, and fascism are clear- cut concepts in contrast to the vague associations that democracy evokes. Capitalism and democracy have personal and civil liberties in common, and owing to their history of association, they seem to some people to be necessarily dependent upon one another. But they are not identical. Historically, capitalism has arisen and developed under undemocratic forms of government, and today it is being attacked in behalf of democratic principles. An uncapitalistic democracy is logically possible: Jefferson clearly envisaged such an order, and the ideal order that Karl Marx contemplated was similar in spirit although very different in conditions and institutions.

The world is apparently drifting away from democracy. But while communism and fascism deride democratic liberty as a bourgeois prejudice, they both claim to be in line with the true democratic tradition, even though the means they use to attain their aims seem to be contrary to it. From this confusion only one thing stands out as clear and certain: democracy has a moral authority that cannot be ignored even by those who may be opposed to it; they are forced to invoke the magic of its name while they rally their forces to destroy it.

To dispel a confusion that has been deepened by most . . .

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