OUT ON A LIMB: Time to retire the ‘far right’ slur.

As the EU establishment struggles to make sense of last week’s revolt in the European elections, one thing is clear: our outdated vocabulary is not up to the task of describing today’s political landscape.

Gains for France’s National Rally, Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy and the Alternative for Germany (AfD) have been described as a ‘far-right surge’ in newspapers and TV reports, not just across Europe but around the world. Even before the election results came in, labels like far right and extreme right were bouncing off commentators’ keyboards. All agree that the far right is on the rise and ordinary people need to worry. This is Europe’s ‘Trump moment’, explained Politico. Some go further. Marine Le Pen’s National Rally is described as ‘neo-fascist’, while academics calmly ask if the AfD is the new Nazi Party. ‘Fascism has arrived’, declared French author Emilia Roig when the election results became clear. Yet with almost a quarter of Europe’s voters having backed a party branded ‘far right’, it is worth asking how accurate this label is and what purpose it now serves.

As Jonah Goldberg wrote in 2014, “This is a very old story:”

Joseph Stalin championed the idea that all of his political opponents should be dubbed fascists, including many of his fellow Bolsheviks, such as Leon Trotsky (whom Stalin had assassinated), and much of the Red Army’s officer corps (whom he had executed), and countless Ukrainians (whom he had liquidated). Stalin insisted that even mentioning the man-made – i.e., Stalin-made — Ukranian famine was evidence you were an agent of the Nazis.

Under Stalin’s “theory of social fascism,” any socialist, social-democratic, or progressive group or party not loyal to him had to be called fascist. Hence, for a while Moscow insisted that FDR and even Norman Thomas (head of the Socialist Party of America) were fascists.

Ultimately, Communist propagandists and their allied intellectuals would reflexively blame fascism for everything, regardless of the facts. That’s what prompted George Orwell to remark that “the word Fascism has now no meaning except in so far as it signifies ‘something not desirable.’”

Elsewhere in Europe, Jonathan Tobin proffers “Notes from the safest place in Europe for Jews:”

As I discovered in conversations with both liberal and Orthodox Jews, as well as non-Jews, the Jewish community in Budapest feels safe in a way that is not the case in London, Paris or Berlin. When you visit Hungary, no one tells you not to wear kippahs or Jewish stars in public. Orthodox Jews are not an uncommon sight on the streets of the Hungarian capital and act as if they have no fear of being attacked for their beliefs.

Meanwhile, the Hungarian government is easily the Jewish state’s best friend in Europe. As knowledgeable sources have made clear to me, Budapest is Jerusalem’s only reliable ally within the European Union, always ready to disrupt the E.U. Commission’s quest for consensus on behalf of its consistent anti-Israel agenda, sometimes displaying more willingness to fight supporters of the Palestinians than the Israelis themselves.

Speaking of those who hate Jews: The far right is not what threatens Europe most.

Voters have eyes and ears, they are aware of what has unfolded in Europe in recent months. It is not far-right students calling for the destruction of Israel; it was not members from Marine Le Pen’s party who were questioned by police on charges of “apology for [Hamas] terrorism;” it was not a right-wing Spanish member who tweeted soon after the October 7 attack: “Today and always with Palestine;” it was not a right -wing mayor in Brussels trying to prevent democratically elected politicians speaking at a conference because he objected to their views; it was not a Swedish right-wing member who recently attended a conference linked with Hamas.

Europe does indeed feel like it might be returning to “the darkest pages of our history;” but it’s not the right which is responsible for many of the most troubling recent events: it is a toxic alliance of elements of the progressive left and their Islamist allies.

The man who was shot dead in France last month as he set fire to a synagogue was an Algerian; and the man jailed for life last week for killing a pensioner in Hartlepool, “for the people of Gaza,” was a Moroccan.

It is Islamofascism that frightens many Europeans today: teachers murdered because they showed images of the Prophet; girls beaten unconscious because they don’t wear a headscarf; men stabbed to death because of their sexuality or because they drank alcohol.

Meanwhile in America, Brandon Morse writes: Congratulations, You’re Far Right…and So Is Your Democrat Friend.

The radicalism, in particular, is so bad that even moderate Democrats have thrown their hands up in disgust at what their party has become. They’re all Ronald Reagan now, grumbling that they never left the party, the party left them, and it wasn’t a slow drift either. The Democrat Party, and indeed the mainstream left, slammed down the pedal and sprayed gravel and smoke all over everyone as it sped to its extremist positions.

You now have Democrats proclaiming they’ll be voting for Donald Trump in November as they angrily curse the Democrat Party for being what it is.

To hear the left tell it, however, they never changed. Democrats claim they represent all that is good and lovely in the world. They stand for “love,” and “equality,” and “inclusion,” and common sense this and fairness that.

Terms and conditions apply. Many will enter, few will win.

Zooming out, however, we can see what the political spectrum has turned into thanks to the left’s radically leftward shift. Everything that isn’t them is now “far-right.” You can see this phrase used constantly in the media when discussing anything that looks to the right of their extremist sentiments.

The Rabbit Hole on X had a very useful infographic that I think sums up the modern political dynamic very well.

Exit question: Conquest’s Third Law states “The simplest way to explain the behavior of any bureaucratic organization is to assume that it is controlled by a cabal of its enemies.” Does that explain all of the crybullies throwing soup at treasured artwork and glueing themselves to roads?

In other words: Why greens were the biggest losers in the EU elections. “The reason why European voters have turned away from the green agenda over the past five years is not hard to fathom. It’s because during that time the impoverishing, immiserating reality of Net Zero has really started to hit home. The EU’s much trumpeted Green Deal, committing member states to various decarbonising rules and targets, has started to feel less like ‘a man on the moon moment’ and more like a boot on Europe’s neck.”