The inconventient truth is that fascism is a left-wing ideology, in that it is clearly ‘statist’ (favors a big state), totalitarian (regulating everything), and collective (downplaying the rights of the individual). This is related to the Jacobinians of the French Revolution and other ideologies that favor the ‘Common good’ over individual rights. This will be a hard one to digest for many die-hard socialists, while conservatives, unusually, will sense fresh air.
Comparing this book to Robert Paxton: “The Anatomy of Fascism” is obvious to do. Paxton has written a standard on the subject, wide in range and deep in detail. Yet, Paxton makes a basic dubious assumption, that Soviet Communism is not fascism. Paxton struggles hard to maintain this, and does it by focusing on the expression and actions of self-declared fascist regimes, ignoring those who named themselves otherwise.
Yet, when one considers the nature of Soviet communism and the devastating analysis it has recieved over the last two decades, the conclusion is obvious: Goldberg is right. “Liberal Fascism” many not be as meticously accurate as “The Anatomy of Fascism”, but in the eye of this reviewer, Goldberg hits bulls eye while Paxton ‘merely’ does a good job.