Authoritarian Government - Ayn Rand

It took centuries and a brain-stopping chain of falsehoods to bring a whole people to the state of Hitler-worship. Modern German culture, including its Nazi climax, is the result of a complex development in the history of philosophy, involving dozens of figures stretching back to the beginnings of Western thought. The same figures helped to shape every Western nation; but in other countries, to varying extents, the results were mixed, because there was also an opposite influence or antidote at work. In Germany, by the turn of our century, the cultural atmosphere was unmixed; the traces of the antidote had long since disappeared, and the intellectual establishment was monolithic.
(IS it inaccurate to observe that term 'monolithic'could also be applied to our political options in socialist Quebec ?) 

If we view the West’s philosophic development in terms of essentials, three fateful turning points stand out, three major philosophers who, above all others, are responsible for generating the disease of collectivism and transmitting it to the dictators of our century. The three are: Plato—Kant—Hegel. The antidote to them is: Aristotle.

No weird cultural aberration produced Nazism. No intellectual lunatic fringe miraculously overwhelmed a civilized country. It is modern philosophy—not some peripheral aspect of it, but the most central of its mainstreamswhich turned the Germans into a nation of killers. (an unfathomable idea - that such a society under the guidance of a charismatic individual, could be allowed  to develop again, in our lifetime, among civilized people ... perhaps ... read on)

The land of poets and philosophers  
was brought down by 
its poets and philosophers.

Twice in our century Germany fought to rule and impose its culture on the rest of the world. It lost both wars. But on a deeper level it is achieving its goal nevertheless.  

It is on the verge of winning the philosophical war against the West, with everything this implies

I have stated repeatedly that the trend in this country is toward a fascist system with communist slogans. 
But what all of today’s socialist pressure groups are busy evading is the fact that neither business nor labor nor anyone else, except the ruling clique, gains anything under fascism or communism or any form of statism—that ALL become victims of an impartial, egalitarian destruction. ... Ayn Rand : Ther Moratorium on Brains

The difference between socialism and fascism is superficial and purely formal, but it is significant psychologically:
it brings the authoritarian nature 
of a planned economy crudely into the open.
The main characteristic of socialism and of communism is public ownership of the means of production, and, therefore, the abolition of private property. The right to property is the right of use and disposal. Under fascism, men retain the semblance or pretense of private property, but the government holds total power over its use and disposal.

The dictionary definition of fascism is: “a governmental system with strong centralized power, permitting no opposition or criticism, controlling all affairs of the nation (industrial, commercial, etc.), emphasizing an aggressive nationalism . . .” The American College Dictionary,
New York: Random House, 1957

Under fascism, 
citizens retain the responsibilities of owning property, 
without freedom to act 
and without any of the advantages of ownership. 

Under socialism, 
government officials acquire all the advantages of ownership, 
without any of the responsibilities, 
since they do not hold title to the property, 
but merely the right to use it
at least until the next purge. 

In either case, socialism or fascism, the government officials hold the economic, political and legal power of life or death over the citizens.

Needless to say, under either system, the inequalities of income and standard of living are greater than anything possible under a free economy—and a man’s position is determined, not by his productive ability and achievement, but by political pull and force.

Under both systems, sacrifice is invoked as a magic, omnipotent solution in any crisis—and “the public good” is the altar on which victims are immolated

But there are stylistic differences of emphasis. 

The socialist-communist 
axis keeps promising to achieve abundance, material comfort and security for its victims, in some indeterminate future

The fascist-Nazi 
axis scorns material comfort and security, and keeps extolling some undefined sort of spiritual duty, service and conquest

The socialist-communist
axis offers its victims an alleged social ideal. 

The fascist-Nazi  
axis offers nothing but loose talk about some unspecified form of racial or national “greatness.” 

The socialist-communist 
axis proclaims some grandiose economic plan, which keeps receding year by year. 

The fascist-Nazi  
axis merely extols leadership—leadership without purpose, program or direction—and power for power’s sake.

The Fascists New Frontier - Ayn Rand