Santorum: ZOMG, Mussolini!

Rick Santorum continues the right’s mind boggling idiocy in comparing Obama, and all liberals for that matter, to fascist leaders. But instead of Hitler, he chooses Mussolini as the obvious comparison. And it’s all because of Medicaid and food stamps:

SANTORUM: [My grandfather] came after having fought in World War I because Mussolini has been in power now for three years and had has figured out that Fascism was something that would crush his spirit and his freedom….And we have two parties that are out talking about how they’re going to solve those problems. One wants to talk about raising taxes on people who have been successful and redistributing money, increasing dependency in this country, promoting more Medicaid and food stamps and all sorts of social welfare programs and passing Obamacare to provide even more government subsidies. More and more dependency, more and more government — exactly what my grandfather left in 1925.

Yes, Rick. Providing medical care and food for the poor is just like Italian fascism. They’re so similar that it’s impossible to tell the difference, really. Andrew Sullivan puts it well:

Yep: the man who would ban contraception, launch a war of aggression against Iran, constitutionally define gays as second class citizens, and launch a nationalist industrial strategy … sees his opponent as Mussolini.

POPULAR AT PATHEOS Nonreligious
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • NoVaRunner

    Such comparisons are the height of dumbassery. They diminish the evil of the actual fascists and diminish the sacrifices made by those who endured and fought against that evil.

  • Michael Heath

    Actually one can make a strong case that Mr. Santorum favors Franco-style fascism, right down to his combining Catholicism and corporatism.

  • Larry

    Wait a minute. Obama is making the trains run on time?

  • http://www.rodlamkey.net reverendrodney

    Wow, talk about projection!

    I think it was Mussolini who defined fascism as the combination of big business and government.

  • raven

    A lot of the Tea Party candidates are attacking social security, medicare, medicaid, and food stamps.

    Which is odd, because those are wildly popular programs and have been for decades.

    The old people might not be too crazy about medicaid and food stamps but they love their social security and medicare. And why not? Without those two programs, many of them would be broke, sick, unable to afford medical care and dying younger than otherwise.

    Food stamps serve seveal purposes. Not least is maintaining civil order. People do not starve to death quietly. They raid, commit crimes, steal, and will kill if they have to, all in order to obtain enough calories to make it through the day.

    In Santorums New Dark Age, the rich will employ a large number of knights, known these days as security guards and mercenaries to keep the poor from taking their stuff for survival.

    I knew someone once who worked in a Latin American libertarian paradies, not much in the way of government. Anyone with a gun could get a job anytime, anywhere. Protecting the rich and their property from the poor people.

  • MikeMa

    I don’t have the time at work to do this but it would be interesting to see the poll bumps each of the not-mitts have experienced over time starting with Bachmann’s summer bump, followed in succession by Perry, Cain, and Gingrich. Santorum’s happened to peak during the Iowa circus but really cannot mean more. A week or 2 after New Hampshire, good ol’ frothy will be another clown in the car.

    Sadly Hunstman and the other 8th tier GOPers has missed out on this not-mitt bump. It would seriously highlight (if that were needed) the general level of disgust and distrust the rethuglicans generate.

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X

    Rick Santorum, Catholic morality only when it suits him.

    http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2010/11/19/131348/pope-universal-healthcare/

  • Tualha

    I wonder if his grandfather-escaping-Mussolini story is any more truthful than Marco Rubio’s parents-escaping-Castro story. Not much point in debunking it, though, since he doesn’t lean on it the way Rubio leaned on his.

  • Olav

    Your Mr. Santorum is becoming quite famous even over here (other side of planet Terra, roughly). Earlier today on a Dutch weblog I was directed to read this: Santorum: No One Has Ever Died Because They Didn’t Have Health Care.

    It would be funny if it weren’t so infuriating. Makes me – almost! – respect our own politicians a bit more.

    On second thought: strike that, because it doesn’t.

  • http://jadehawks.wordpress.com/ Jadehawk, cascadeuse féministe

    Wait a minute. Obama is making the trains run on time?

    i wish…

    :-p

  • Artor

    @Raven #5

    I think the reason the Wingnuts & Teabaggers (not much difference) are attacking wildly popular & effective programs like medicaid, food stamps, social security and medicare is that they show that progressive things like socialism aren’t bad. If there’s clear evidence on hand that socialism actually helps people, it makes it hard to argue that religious fascism would make anything better.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    This is just one more salvo in the right’s attempt to redefine fascists from being hyper-nationalist, racist, anti-democratic, militaristic thugs into bleeding-heart liberals who were too generous with social welfare programs. It’s so absurd it practically defies comprehension. As if there was even a single person who fled Italy because Mussolini was handing out food stamps.

    Jonah Goldberg did something similarly stupid when he tried to “prove” that Hitler was a liberal because among other things, he supported anti-smoking programs. Yeah, that’s why history regards him as a monster. It was those tyrannical anti-smoking programs.

  • Doug Little

    I’ll bet you a beer that Rick doesn’t even know what the definition of Fascism is.

  • FlickingYourSwitch

    How about they make more accurate comparisons, that doesn’t include fascism and dictatorship? We have welfare, healthcare, education and many other things paid for by everyone, with benefits for all of Swedish society. That’s a good thing.

  • http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    FlickingYourSwitch, in addition to not learning from the history of their own country the American Right has inculcated itself against learning anything positive from the lessons and history of any other country. “European” is just something to smear your opponent with. That soft socialism works simply makes it worse. The State doesn’t exist to help the poor (read: various dogwhistles that mean “black people”); it exists to punish them.

  • exdrone

    Given Santorum’s hyper-Catholicism (@7 aside), he seems to just be trading one Italian-based autocrat for another one.

  • Aquaria

    Such comparisons are the height of dumbassery. They diminish the evil of the actual fascists and diminish the sacrifices made by those who endured and fought against that evil.

    Sometimes, it seems like that’s the reason why they do it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/connorbd BrianX

    With apologies to anyone with family who lived through Fascist Italy: I wonder if Ricky likes castor oil.

  • matty1

    Modusoperandi, your post has many redundant words, all you really needed to say is

    the American Right has inculcated itself against learning

  • http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    matty1, I majored in redundant words (with a minor in redundant words. And another minor in redundant words).

  • lpetrich

    While we are at it, let’s associate highway building with Nazism. One of Nazi Germany’s conquerors, General Dwight David Eisenhower, was so impressed with Nazi Germany’s autobahnen (highways), that he wanted the US to have some like them. Thus, the Interstates.

    The Nazis also were involved in founding a car company, Volkswagen (“People’s Car”). I remember someone who refused to ride that make of car because of its Nazi connections.