Mr. Hall was a rising force in the party, which has capitalized on a tide of anti-immigrant sentiment to attract members — young racist skinheads, aging Ku Klux Klan members, and extremists on the left and the right."Extremists on the left". Yes, you heard it. Yes, evidently the line coming from the NYTimes is that "extremists" on the "left" are every bit as likely to join the US Nazi movement as "young racist skinheads, aging Ku Klux Klan members and right extremists". That is fucking offensive. It's basically slander.
Last time I checked, "workers of the world unite!" doesn't exactly sit easily with wanting to secede to create a "white society".
First of all, the "far left", or the "hard left", or, if you like, the so-called "extreme" left has always been the most determined and uncompromising force against fascism and the hard right. Look at history. We can find plenty of instances in which mainstream conservatives (and even liberals) strike an indifferent, or even slightly sympathetic, posture vis-a-vis hard-right xenophobia, nationalism, and fascism. It's easy for these mainstream political forces to re-write history from where they're sitting now. But at the most crucial moments in U.S. history when xenophobia, nationalism, and quasi-fascist movements were on the rise, it has almost always been the case that the radical left was the most vocal, uncompromising force opposed to such developments.
Without fail, the far Left has consistently been the most determined, uncompromising opponents of fascism and racism.
Think of the role of Communists in the 1930s in fighting for the Scottsboro Boys when liberals and conservatives were happy with the status quo as it was. Democrats in the South, in conjunction with KKK terrorism and violence, were responsible for rolling back the gains of Reconstruction and reimposing the apartheid order that came to be known as Jim Crow. Leftists lost their lives struggling against this re-imposition of de jure racism when liberals and conservatives were quite happy with the white supremacist order over which they presided.
Comtemporary examples abound. When complacent, "tolerant" liberals shrug their shoulders at the re-emergence of White Power and fascist groups in the public square, it has consistently been the socialist Left that has courageously stood up to the bigots. The article mentions counter-protesters in LA hurling bottles and rocks at the fascists. I can guarantee you the counter-protesters weren't from the DNC. They were probably exactly what the NYTimes deems "extreme leftists", namely socialists, communists, anarchists and so forth.
The far Left has been unanimous in absolutely opposing the rise of xenophobia and racism exemplified by SB1070. In fact, it has been the Left which has organized the most fierce resistance to these developments. Recall the Columbia students in the International Socialist Organization who stormed the stage to interrupt an event meant to give the fascist, murderous Minutemen Project a forum to express their racist bile. Liberals jumped to the defense of the Minutemen on grounds of being "moderate" and "tolerant" and so forth. But the Left was uncompromising in saying that we cannot ever tolerate fascism, xenophobic violence or hard-right hatred. A free society is incompatible with tolerating such toxic, violent hatred. To "tolerate" it is to acquiesce. This is exactly what Herbert Marcuse was talking about when he spoke of "repressive tolerance".
"Nazi Punks Fuck Off!" is not a liberal slogan.
I've never been able to accept the bit of liberal ideology which asserts that the point between two "extremes" is therefore credible. I guess I'm just not a "tolerant" moderate when it comes to opposing oppression. I think injustice and oppression never deserve to be tolerated. If that's enough to make me an "extremist", then so be it.