Who needs the gulag when you can compel obedience by threatening someone’s job or destroy her reputation on social media? Why bother with the secret police when the masses already hand over detailed personal information to Google and other woke capitalist behemoths via smartphones and laptops?
The coming soft totalitarianism may well unify the government, major corporations, the media and leading institutions of civil society, which will collaborate to suppress dissent and coerce conformity. The United States could one day have its own version of China’s high-tech social credit system. Those who resisted Soviet Communism urge us to prepare now for resistance, while we still can.
The shocking truth is, we Americans are living in a pre-totalitarian situation. In 1951, Hannah Arendt published her landmark study “The Origins of Totalitarianism,” in which she studied the conditions that led both Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany to embrace totalitarianism. It makes for sobering reading in our present circumstances. Among the signs: