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Bourgeois Liberty and the Politics of FearFrom Absolutism to Neo-Conservatism$
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Marc Mulholland

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199653577

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199653577.001.0001

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Cold War and the Fear of Subversion

Cold War and the Fear of Subversion

(p.216) 12 Cold War and the Fear of Subversion
Bourgeois Liberty and the Politics of Fear

Marc Mulholland

Oxford University Press

Post-war Western Europe converged towards an American model of high-wage consumerist capitalism, considerably attenuating class conflict. In Western Europe, Christian democracy and Social Democracy cooperated in constructing a democratic constitutional order. In the Soviet buffer-zone states of eastern Europe, bourgeois civil society was eliminated slice by slice: by a sequence known as ‘salami tactics’. This was partly in reaction to the perceived Western aggression of the ‘Marshall Plan’. Western Cold Warriors – drawing the lesson that Popular Frontism was only a means to the end of totalitarian communisiation – characterised Communist ‘subversion’ as an endemic corruption of leftist movements. This was considered to be a particular problem in the under-developed ‘Third World’. Fearing both subversion and outright war, a gigantic ‘Military-Industrial Complex’ grew up in the United States, placing pressure upon that country's traditions of democratic and free-market civil society.

Keywords:   consumerism, Marshall Plan, buffer states, communisation, salami tactics, subversion, Cold War, third world, Military-Industrial Complex, Christian Democracy

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