World Affairs succumbs to night terrors over current interest in communism, positing that "the specter of 'new communism' ... is mounting a comeback; a new form of left-wing totalitarianism that enjoys intellectual celebrity" thanks to the Badiou, Hardt & Negri, and Zizek:
The appeal rests on one fact above all: only the new communists argue that the crises of contemporary liberal capitalist societies--ecological degradation, financial turmoil, the loss of trust in the political class, exploding inequality--are systemic; interlinked, not amenable to legislative reform, and requiring "revolutionary" solutions.
The piece cautions that "the new communism turns out to be a simple repetition of the old [and] remains within the orbit of leftist totalitarianism:"
Indeed, new communism seems to repeat every theoretical disaster of old communism. It is profoundly elitist, rehabilitating the Jacobin notion of the educational dictatorship. [...] Recent history tells us that authoritarian philosophical and political ideas can still find their way to the streets in advanced capitalist societies. The new communist ideas might yet connect with the young, the angry, and the idealistic who are confronted by a profound economic crisis in the context of an exhausted social democracy and a self-loathing intellectual culture. Tempting as it is, we can't afford to just shake our heads at the new communism and pass on by.
Sad Red Earth provides a pithy summary of their fears:
The Soviet edifice, and within, Zizek as court jester theorist.
Before he's shot.
And a ruthless clerk takes power.
That fate is more like conservative managerial dominance than communism, but I don't expect any better from corporate media outlets.