Posted 18 февраля 2021, 06:13

Published 18 февраля 2021, 06:13

Modified 25 декабря 2022, 20:57

Updated 25 декабря 2022, 20:57

On the way to fascism: Russia crossed the last line with one foot

18 февраля 2021, 06:13
Сергей Яковлев
It all started when I decided to clean up my bookshelves. Books become covered with dust, from time to time you have to wipe them, taking each one in your hands as if it's for the first time (something is forgotten, and some of them have never been looked at in my entire life).
Сюжет
Books

Sergey Yakovlev, writer, member of the Russian PEN Center

It is a painful matter, not only physically, but also morally: I want to return to this one, and to re-read that one, however, it’s not the time, somehow after... And they return to their places, most likely - before the next distant cleaning.

But sometimes you can't stand another and you open it in a hurry at random. And then a little miracle happens.

“Many writers today would welcome such a government that could suppress the crimes of the fascists by violence. They imagine that they would gain a lot from such violence and that at the same time they could continue their condemnation of all violence, and therefore this violence. We must not forget that this was their position under the bourgeois democracies, where violence was economic, which means it was more imperceptible, quiet, bloodless, because hunger also kills and rapes, only it does not flow blood. Under bourgeois democracies, they also enjoyed benefits, which removed a smaller part of the population from the exploitation of its greater part, but when it came to exploitation, they condemned it.

The truth is that bourgeois rule uses various forms of violence - quiet forms in a democratic system, loud ones in fascist states. It is also true that all violence can only be broken by other violence. And what happens if a person does not take the side of any of the violence? This means that he supports the one of the two violence that prevails".

Bertolt Brecht wrote this in the 30s of the last century. And the "miracle" mentioned here (the amazing coincidence of your own worries and thoughts of the last weeks and months with an accidentally discovered passage telling about a different time in another country) was probably best explained by the writer Andrei Platonov: in his opinion, it is not skill that works in books a writer, but a "longing for the reader".

The melancholy of the modern Russian man in the street is that he is faced with an insoluble choice described by Brecht. He is sick of living with today's order - somehow from everything it is clear that everything is not going to his, the average man in the street, benefit and well-being. But he is also afraid to call for change: a generation is still alive, which has experienced the deception of the "liberation" revolution and the futility of democratic hopes. This generation remembers the 1990s and would least of all want to return there. Although the most perspicacious understand, of course, that the current regime in the country is the flesh of the flesh of that very imitative "democracy", which inevitably degenerated into the despotism of a rather narrow circle of people who have seized, as it was once said, "the national property".

Actually, the alignment of the main forces and the essence of the contradictions in the world have changed little since the time of the Great French Revolution, when the "right" and "left" first appeared. So they were seated in the National Assembly: on the left - supporters of changes in the name of freedom, equality and brotherhood, defenders of the poor; on the right - representatives of the richest strata and nobility interested in preserving class privileges and capital.

However, the rich and privileged strata, frightened by revolutions, are forced to look for new forms to legalize and justify their domination, resorting to increasingly sophisticated deception. One of such ingenious constructions, born in the twentieth century and designed to camouflage social inequality with phantoms of interests, goals and threats that are supposedly common to different strata of society, is fascism.

He has many faces today. The American variety of fascism was (and remains), of course, "Trumpism". The vulgar and tongue-tied billionaire, one of the richest people of our time, managed to redirect the attention of the masses of ordinary people to external (emigrants, China) and internal (Washington establishment) enemies, scare them with vague threats of conspiracies, while demonstratively killing the social protection system and exacerbating inequality. A growing threat is also posed by right-wing (essentially fascist) parties and movements in many European countries. The technologies are all the same as those used by Mussolini, Hitler, Franco or Pinochet: to convince people who are not too sophisticated in politics that the ideas of equality and justice, as well as, for example, concern for the environment, compassion for refugees, etc. , come from malevolent "leftists", enemies of the nation and all of humanity, are aimed at destroying traditional morality, undermining the monolithicity, sovereignty, economy and defense of the country and ultimately leading to its death.

And all this deceitful rhetoric is solely for the sake of preserving for itself as inherited or inherited wealth, power and "legitimate" superiority over the disadvantaged masses and freely transfer this power, superiority and wealth to their heirs, thus perpetuating the division into " chosen "and" smerds.

The horror of the situation is not that at the moment one of the people is richer, and someone is poorer. There may be various reasons for this. One experienced person (by no means a rich man) convinced me somehow that in order to become rich, you just have to really want it. It is likely that there are people who do not want this, and even those who want to remain poor.

The horror lies in the return of the medieval representation of inequality as a "birthright", in the completely legal formation of hereditary administrative and cultural "elites" that has already entered the scientific circulation. And to this horror earlier and more willingly than other countries she joined at the end of the 20th century quite recently "socialist" Russia.

For a long time the expression "Russian fascism" seemed to me to be an oxymoron. (And not only to me: Vadim Kozhinov, for example, wrote about this convincingly.) However, mentally returning from today's troubles to the early 1990s, you begin to understand the justification for the seemingly absurd word "demofascism" that had already arisen then.

Democracy, of course, had nothing to do with it, the leaders of the then coup defended themselves against it in a timely manner and reliably, but fascist (or rather, proto-fascist) ideas and ideas spread with unexpected success. Paradoxically, they were nurtured by the most diverse parties that existed at that time, from "liberals" to "communists". The CPRF almost immediately acquired "its" oligarchs of a very reactionary type and was fed by them, consistently moving towards the current state of one of the gears of the despotic regime. As for the liberal wing, it clearly divided in the fall of 1993 into democratic and anti-democratic components. The first turned out to be out of work, the second took full advantage of the fruits of its victory and brought the construction of a corporate state with a hereditary "elite", uncontrollably owning all state resources and protected from the people by a powerful army of guardians hired by their own money, to today's exemplary state.

In addition to a handful of large beneficiaries, the fascist regime always has a more or less broad social base. In this, in fact, he differs from any other despotism, this is his "know-how". In America, for example, these are the unemployed residents of dying industrial centers, from which industry has flowed to countries with cheaper labor. We have a conditional "Uralvagonzavod", but not only. These are also those who were lucky in the 90s and later to grab everything that was bad for little things and become "entrepreneurs". And some of the young people cynically building their careers at the expense of super loyalty. And just half-beggarly state employees, frightened by their superiors (something, but fear in the Russians is in their blood) ... In the towns and villages of central Russia, among hundreds of poor shacks, one can usually count a dozen or two solid, or even relatively rich houses, the origin of wealth is which is known to every resident: the owner of this privatized a sawmill at one time, another took all the equipment from the collective farm, the third simply steals the forest and now takes it to the capital, the fourth got rich on road contracts, selling sand and rubble "to the left", the fifth only works in the district administration ... However, almost all of the forest has been cut down, no one is buying expensive sawn timber, the collective farm equipment is rusted, the roads have been and remain broken, and the once rich rural owners of jeeps and Land Rovers bought a couple of decades ago understand more and more clearly that they probably won't get a new car now...

The government, which is losing support, will have to respond to all the new disappointments of its supporters. As well as the growing anger of those so far not so many who can no longer endure the atmosphere of lies and mockery, this reproach of humanity, in which even dying is disgusting (I heard such confessions from old people), because it deprives life, past and future, of everyone sense ... Those who feel this way no longer think about which of the "two violence" to support.

But the point is not even how to certify our current state - one can argue about evaluative terms. The fact is that today Russia is at the last line, with one foot already stepping on it.