Will Hutton Claims Brexit Is Fascism

Sounds like Willy Hutton had the one too many valedictory spritzers while watching the D-Day parades. For he’s actually insisting that Brexit is fascism. No, really:

Contemporary capitalism, left too much to its own devices by the rightwing proposition that the state must keep out of the economy, does not work. The inequalities it has thrown up are, as in the 1930s, provoking powerful societal protests. And, as in the 1930s, a new wave of demagogues, of whom Nigel Farage is a prime example, is blaming an out-of-touch elite for misgoverning a population needy of change. Foreigners must lie at the root of our ills and there is no greater or more intrusive foreign agent than the European Union. Vote Brexit – it offers a purpose otherwise lacking.

There is of course an amusement to this. The actual economic policies Hutton espouses are in fact those of the fascist state. Do note that this doesn’t make Hutton a fascist – only that the economic policies are similar. Both insist upon the primacy of the State in directing economic efforts, private industry only doing what it is told to but allowed to keep the profits from having done so. There’s even a whiff of the Volk in Hutton’s insistence that we must be lovely to the Europeans, our people, at the expense of links to others outside the greater tribe.

But that detail aside there is something tasteless about Hutton’s insistence, isn’t there? D-Day was about freeing Europe from the rule of the Germans. We must remember it by succumbing to the EU’s rule by Germans.


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Tim Almond
Tim Almond

“But when he took his family on holidays in 1960s Europe, he sought out any German his own age with a handshake; if this man was a former soldier, he insisted on buying him a drink. My brother and I would be told to play with his children while Dad tried, in whatever language he could, to say how much he respected his former adversary, how there must never be another war and how we must build Europe together around shared values and interests to prevent it.” I’m going to suggest that’s wasn’t common. My own hazy memories of the… Read more »

Jonathan Harston
Jonathan Harston

His argument is based on a falalcy in the first sentence. “Contemporary capitalism, left too much to its own devices by the rightwing proposition that the state must keep out of the economy…”

Contemporary capitalism is interfered with by the state probably more than at any other point in modern times, with the EU itself being a major part of that interference. Unfettered capitalism wouldn’t be hidden from competitors behind protectionist walls, unfettered capitalism wouldn’t be being fed at the state’s teat, unfettered capitalism wouldn’t be protected by the state from going bust.


There are some people, of whom Will Hutton is a prime example, who provide an invaluable service to all UK citizens.

All that is required in order to establish which side of any debate to support is firstly to discover Mr Hutton’s stance and secondly to adopt the exact opposite position.