What does "far right" actually mean? Watch

NJA
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I hear the term applied to Geert Wilders, it used to apply to fascism and Nazism.
What are the defining characteristics? When does a person or group become "far right" as opposed to "right" (whatever that means!)

The only thought I get is that "far right" actively oppose and seek to remove ideologies seen as dangerous whereas "right" tolerates them and seeks to defeat them by reasoned argument.
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Boris Didov
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(Original post by NJA)
I hear the term applied to Geert Wilders, it used to apply to fascism and Nazism.
What are the defining characteristics? When does a person or group become "far right" as opposed to "right" (whatever that means!)

The only thought I get is that "far right" actively oppose and seek to remove ideologies seen as dangerous whereas "right" tolerates them and seeks to defeat them by reasoned argument.
"Far right" is basically a more extreme version of 'right', but it is very often misused in recent times to describe people with views that are further right than ourselves, while 'far left' has come to mean any views which are further left that ours.
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ChaoticButterfly
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It's general used to refer to very hierarchical political ideologies that demand authoritarian means of enforcing said hierarchies in society. Fascism in Europe or things like the Ku Klux Klan in America are examples.

It's a spectrum.

Right = hierarchies are good or inevitable

Left = hierarchies are bad and not inevitable.

It can get confusing though for example you can have left wing ideologies that advocate or end up creating very rigid hierarchical societies in order to break older hierarchies, eg Soviet Socialism. Likewise you can get right wing ideologies that are anti hierarchy like american libertarianism but actually support a very hierarchical form of capitalism.

Also how you measure left or right or what the terms means is also influenced by your own political leanings and lived experience. The reason my view is built around hierarchy is due to me having libertarian socialist views, which means I see hierarchies in capitalism, fascism, racism, state socialism etc and I don't like them. Hierarchy can only be a neccecery evil to me at best. Someone on the right may actually like them. Where as someone on the libertarian or liberal right does necessarily even recognise the existence of hierarchy in liberal capitalism, only freedom, individualism and consumerism..
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Skygreen52
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A fascist e.g hitler
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donnaseemchandra
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(Original post by Rosewater180)
A facisist e.g hitler
*fascist
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astutehirstute
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(Original post by ChaoticButterfly)
It's general used to refer to very hierarchical political ideologies that demand authoritarian means of enforcing said hierarchies in society. Fascism in Europe or things like the Ku Klux clan in America are examples.
So were UKIP (now absorbed by the Tories of course) far right then?
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ChaoticButterfly
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(Original post by astutehirstute)
So were UKIP (now absorbed by the Tories of course) far right then?
They are a mixture of Thatcherites, socially conservative working class who are economically left wing, libertarians and people who want very strong borders.

UKIP certainly have the potential to be far right. They do not have a paramilitary set up though, although they have recently gone further to the right with more intrusive authoritarians society policing when it comes to the Muslim population. Plus Nigel Farage seems to be moving further right the more he feels he can, recently he explicitly endorsed Le Pen who is the leader of the National Front (which is at best a Fascist party that has moderated itself for the modern times). Plus like UKIP, despite its despotic language shared with the Mail describing remainers as traitors, does still go for liberal democratic solutions (although again Farage has said recently about taking up arms if Brexit was some how stopped from happening via the democratic process).

But like I said it is confusing, the modern far right uses progressive language to get what it wants. It attempts to persecute Muslims by using anti-racist and ant--sexist positions (which are left wing). Successful politics involves realpolitik so it can be hard working out what people actually want. I suspect Farage would actually be quite happy in a fascist organisation like the Black Shirts if it existed and was popular enough in society. If it ever came to it and mass political violence started happening I would not be surprised if people like farage joined the far right.

There is also the issue of tyrannises of the majority. The Muslim Brotherhood is an Islamist faction in the middle east that is reformist, yet Islamism is a very strict hierarchical ideology that is essentially a form of fascism. What happens when people who start to peruse objectives shared with fascism via democracy? What if you have a majority who elect racist governments?
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TheCT
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(Original post by Rosewater180)
A fascist e.g hitler
Or Antifa
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astutehirstute
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(Original post by ChaoticButterfly)
They are a mixture of Thatcherites, socially conservative working class who are economically left wing, libertarians and people who want very strong borders.

UKIP certainly have the potential to be far right. They do not have a paramilitary set up though, although they have recently gone further to the right with more intrusive authoritarians society policing when it comes to the Muslim population. Plus Nigel Farage seems to be moving further right the more he feels he can, recently he explicitly endorsed Le Pen who is the leader of the National Front (which is at best a Fascist party that has moderated itself for the modern times). Plus like UKIP, despite its despotic language shared with the Mail describing remainers as traitors, does still go for liberal democratic solutions (although again Farage has said recently about taking up arms if Brexit was some how stopped from happening via the democratic process).

But like I said it is confusing, the modern far right uses progressive language to get what it wants. It attempts to persecute Muslims by using anti-racist and ant--sexist positions (which are left wing). Successful politics involves realpolitik so it can be hard working out what people actually want. I suspect Farage would actually be quite happy in a fascist organisation like the Black Shirts if it existed and was popular enough in society. If it ever came to it and mass political violence started happening I would not be surprised if people like farage joined the far right.

There is also the issue of tyrannises of the majority. The Muslim Brotherhood is an Islamist faction in the middle east that is reformist, yet Islamism is a very strict hierarchical ideology that is essentially a form of fascism. What happens when people who start to peruse objectives shared with fascism via democracy? What if you have a majority who elect racist governments?
Having read your post a thought strikes me that was already three quarters formed.

We are entering a political period in which tried and trusted terms over many years seem to have less and less meaning.

I no longer understand what is left and what right. It is all religion, culture and identity nowadays seemingly...
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username878267
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(Original post by astutehirstute)
Having read your post a thought strikes me that was already three quarters formed.

We are entering a political period in which tried and trusted terms over many years seem to have less and less meaning.

I no longer understand what is left and what right. It is all religion, culture and identity nowadays seemingly...
It's always been confusing though hasn't it? To me the terms left and right should be about economic policy. But then Hitler and Mussolini were far-right yet in a number of aspects had what could be considered protectionist, anti-free market economic ideologies.

Meanwhile people call those who are anti-war or considered anti-west, 'lefties' even though such positions have nothing to do with economics.

We need a complete redrawing of political scales.
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astutehirstute
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(Original post by Bornblue)
It's always been confusing though hasn't it? To me the terms left and right should be about economic policy. But then Hitler and Mussolini were far-right yet in a number of aspects had what could be considered protectionist, anti-free market economic ideologies.

Meanwhile people call those who are anti-war or considered anti-west, 'lefties' even though such positions have nothing to do with economics.

We need a complete redrawing of political scales.
I agree.

I seem to remember the terms originate in where delegates sat in the French Assembly?
They never appear before the French Revolution or the Industrial one. As far as I know, anyway.

There seems to a campaign to rebrand the left as "Progressive." But that feels problematic. Progress to what?

We are in flux, here in Europe, and I would expect new terms to eventually be coined to describe the political boundaries. In the UK as ethic and religious groups reach critical mass perhaps we will see them breaking away from the traditional political parties as they have in Northern Ireland. And how long before we see the Muslim Brotherhood in France?

As western societies balkanise I would expect politics to follow, but of course I say that from what some might still term a "right wing" perspective.
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username878267
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(Original post by astutehirstute)
I agree.

I seem to remember the terms originate in where delegates sat in the French Assembly?
They never appear before the French Revolution or the Industrial one. As far as I know, anyway.

There seems to a campaign to rebrand the left as "Progressive." But that feels problematic. Progress to what?

We are in flux, here in Europe, and I would expect new terms to eventually be coined to describe the political boundaries. In the UK as ethic and religious groups reach critical mass perhaps we will see them breaking away from the traditional political parties as they have in Northern Ireland. And how long before we see the Muslim Brotherhood in France?

As western societies balkanise I would expect politics to follow, but of course I say that from what some might still term a "right wing" perspective.
Possibly it could be divided into four:
- Right globalist (Cameron/Osborne/Clegg)

- Left globalist
(Pretty much moderate Labour)

- Right protectionist
(Trump/ Le Pen / Wilders)

- Left protectionist
(Melenchon, possibly Corbyn)


Very rough guidelines but seems more accurate than simple right v left.
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ChaoticButterfly
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This thing of the terms left and right being far to simplistic is nothing new. Take the Spanish Civil war, "the left" was split into vastly different groups that spent more time fighting each other than the fascists.

It was during Orwell's time that he wrote "It's not left vs right that is important, rather authoritarian vs libertarian"
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Saunders16
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I would say that 'far right' refers to individuals and groups who lean to the right economically (to varying degrees) whilst also espousing authoritarian and reactionary political views. It can refer to fascists (i.e. Benito Mussolini), national socialists (i.e. Adolf Hitler) and anti-liberal, anti-egalitarian parties such as Nordfront, the National Front in France and the Party for Freedom in the Netherlands, who all propose a more radical form of the populism popularised by groups like UKIP within a democratic structure. It's important to remember that left vs. right is about economics, and that the left can be equally authoritarian and illiberal.
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