To characterize modern day America as a fascist state is at one and the same time both ahistorical and close to the present truth.
In order to resolve this apparent contradiction we must understand that modern day fascism displays certain rough, jagged continuities as well as discontinuities with its interwar past.
Operationally, fascism was, at least initially, an alliance between ancien regime conservatives, socially and economically insecure elements of the middle classes, and a significant fragment of alienated, radicalized workers. Ideologically what united these disparate groups was a utopian belief in the nation as a higher structural unit uniquely suited to the aims of both internal corporatist social organization and external expansive force as expressed in high stakes international conflict.
Looked at from this historical perspective, modern day American fascism is a completely different beast.
Firstly, its general, overall class organization is vastly different. Secondly, fascism in America is not primarily about specific categories of class support at all, as it was for historical fascism. Rather, the sources of American fascism are broadly structural, class cutting, organizational, and have their ideological basis in a faux or unserious, artificial belief in the nation.
Today’s American governing elites (Trump included) do not possess a messianic or utopian belief in the nation or white race. Here, as Marx once famously remarked, history first…