So I am watching the new series based on the Philip K Dick novel of the same name. The story supposes that the Germans and Japanese won World War 2 and partitioned the United States between them. It is the 1960’s and a whole generation is growing up that does not remember a free United States. Within the story, a small resistance tries to keep the knowledge of freedom alive by passing around bootleg copies of a movie that shows the Allies winning the war. Admittedly, I am not far into the series and have not read the book. But it gave me an idea. A question really. Who actually won World War 2?
The question might seem ridiculous. Ostensibly the answer is easy. Western democracy won out over European and Japanese militarism and fascism. But did it? The war might have been one of the first modern wars of ideology – wars fought for ideas. And if that is the case, the winner may not be so clear-cut. Because, in fact, the same seeds that blossomed in Italy as fascism and in Germany as Nazism took root in the US as well and had been growing since well before the war. These seeds have continued to grow until we face a future that might be described as “soft” totalitarianism.
- The growth of the security and surveillance state,
- The intrusion of government into nearly every aspect of your life,
- The blending of the two parties until regardless of which way you vote, you get more of the same,
- The merging of government and corporate interests,
- The replacement of free speech with acceptable speech,
- And the education and conditioning of the masses to find this condition acceptable.
This assault on the underpinnings of the world’s first free republic began in the late 1800’s as the progressive movement began to gain steam. Early changes strengthened the federal government, turned a shy republic into a global empire, created a central bank, and made constitutional changes designed to weaken the power of the states vis a vis the federal government. It saw the implementation of eugenics schemes whose impact are still felt to the present day. During its first heyday, FDR set out purposely to dismantle the constitutional restraints placed on his office and the federal government as a whole.