The Free Society Fellowship is Young Voices response to Charlottesville and the tragedy that occurred there in August 2017. Our goal was to reinforce the message of our movement… in contrast to ethno-nationalism…the free society is cosmopolitan, embracing people of all backgrounds under the common umbrella of free speech, property rights, religious freedom, and the rule of law.
Adriana Vazquez is a Young Voices Advocate and Free Society Fellow. We taped this conversation on Monday, 2nd to cap off her run in the program and get a sense for how he feels about the hurdles our democracy must clear going forward in order to survive. Our discussion covers Charlottesville, immigration and populist politics.
The inclusion of renowned European nationalists at a recent conference of US conservatives (CPAC) and the change of government language about immigrants suggests a shift toward European-style populist nationalism within the reigning faction of the GOP.
“This idea that she is sort of more moderate, that really is confusing,” said Brussels-based libertarian pundit Bill Wirtz. “I’m not sure where they got that idea. You couldn’t have imagined Marion Le Pen being invited two years ago,” Wirtz said. “Some people have been invited to say things that you can’t say yet as a Republican. That’s where I am very worried –for the future condition.”
Long regarded as the guardians of the international liberal order, developed countries are now submerged in authoritarian ideologies. The first major country to be hit by this authoritarian wave is the United States, whose president was elected on a radical nationalist and protectionist discourse. France is probably the next country on the list. Even if Marine Le Pen is not elected, the far-right National Front Party has already won the cultural battle, leading mainstream parties to radicalize their stances on social, economic, and security issues. Right-wing authoritarianism is moreover challenged by radical left leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s Marxist rhetoric. If we add up the total votes for the far-left and the far-right during the first round of the presidential election, these are at least 40 percent of French voters who have praised authoritarian agendas.