Adolf Hitler Rose to Power 80 Years Ago Today: A Cautionary Tale for Democracy

you know who else bowed?National ArchivesGermany marked a grim anniversary today: eighty years since Adolf Hitler’s accession to the chancellery. Angela Merkel, the current German chancellor, talked about the lessons Germany draws from its history. From the Telegraph:

Mrs Merkel was speaking at the inauguration of an exhibition in Berlin to commemorate eight decades since Hitler became chancellor on January 30, 1933 - an anniversary which has aroused much interest in Germany.

"Human rights don't assert themselves. Freedom doesn't preserve itself all alone and democracy doesn't succeed by itself," Mrs Merkel said.

"That must be a constant warning for us, Germans," she added referring to Hitler's arrival at the chancellery.

Der Spiegel, meanwhile, explains how it wasn’t so clear to diplomats in Berlin in 1933 what an unmitigated disaster Hitler’s rise would be. In fact, it wasn’t even clear the Nazi-led government would last long:

Along with other observers, diplomats in Berlin in 1933 did not immediately recognize that the appointment of the new government marked a historical turning point. At that early stage, no one predicted that the Nazi regime would last for 12 years and end with a disaster on the scale of World War II. Initially, Hitler's cabinet was viewed as just another in a series of more or less short-lived German governments…

In [US Ambassador Frederic] Sackett's opinion, the real power lay in the hands of Vice-Chancellor Franz von Papen and Minister for Economics Alfred Hugenberg. It was a view that echoed his American colleagues' earlier observations. On Jan. 30, 1933, the embassy in Berlin sent out a telegram reporting on the appointment of Hitler and the new cabinet, emphasizing the "reactionary and monarchist influence" at work in the new government. At first, many diplomats believed that this conservative containment of Hitler would ensure that the government's agenda would not be determined by the National Socialists' radical ideology.

It didn’t take long for those observers to change their tune. Der Spiegel continues:

But, in subsequent weeks, the regime began to unleash its campaign of violence and terror -- on a governmental and administrative level as well as on the street. It was only once foreign consulates started seeing rising demand for immigration visas and a growing exodus to neighboring countries that the significance of the events of January 30 began to sink in.

About five and a half years later, Europe’s leaders gathered to bless Germany’s annexation of the largely ethnically German “Sudetenland” of Czechoslovakia (not invited: Czechoslovakia). Less than a year after that Germany invaded Poland and World War II began. The world would never be the same.

Today, of course, despite Merkel’s invocation of Hitler as ultimate cautionary tale, comparisons of him to present day leaders and events are generally frowned upon

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  • fish||

    Adolf Hitler Rose to Power 80 Years Ago Today: A Cautionary Tale for Democracy

    You know who else rose to power eighty years ago...

    (sorry I had to)

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Fdr?

  • Sevo||

    Not far off.

  • Ice Nine||

    Haile Selassie?

  • Sevo||

    Maybe earlier.

  • Ice Nine||

    Couple years

  • ||

    The band KISS rose to power 40 years ago today. Suspicious?

  • Ice Nine||

    So you're saying that Hitler is Gene Simmons' father? Figures.

  • ||

    I suppose that might explain Kiss fans.

    Kiss fans: the proto-juggalos.

  • ||

    Ah, KISS: the earlier, dumber ICP.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Hey, at least being a juggalo is all about doing drugs and fucking juggalo skanks. Being in the KISS army is about collecting Gene Simmons kitsch.

  • ||

    So you're saying that Hitler is Gene Simmons' father?

    Actually, he's a libertarian. Sorta.

  • Mr Whipple||

    The Federal Reserve?

  • SIV||

    More like 100 years ago

  • Mr Whipple||

    Meh, I took a shot.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Bennie Goodman?

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Can you Godwin this?

  • Ed||

    It's like dividing by zero

  • A Serious Man||

    Only a Nazi would Goodwin proof a thread to protect the Fuehrer's name from being sullied.

    Ed you are literally worse than Hitler for Goodwin proofing a thread.

  • Ed||

    "godwin this" would've been a vastly superior alt-text

  • Sevo||

    Dunno. That one is pretty good!

  • Ed||

    Sometimes the alt-text is the hardest part

  • Sevo||

    Could be, but you're doin' fine...

  • AlmightyJB||

    Yeah, that's definately the best alt-text I've seen for a while.

  • ||

    Yes Ed, you get an A++ for that excellence.

  • Paul.||


    Scruffy Nerfherder|1.30.13 @ 8:10PM|#


    Can you Godwin this?

    reply to this



    Ed|1.30.13 @ 8:11PM|#


    It's like dividing by zero

    Ed, you have won the thread.

  • Mr Whipple||

  • A Serious Man||

    "Human rights don't assert themselves. Freedom doesn't preserve itself all alone and democracy doesn't succeed by itself," Mrs Merkel said.

    So it seems we have two choices: severely limiting the role of the state to where there is no benefit in controlling it, or hoping and praying that the Top Men we place into power to regulate our liberty don't fuck us over.

    Democracy greatly inhibits the latter scenario.

  • Sevo||

    "So it seems we have two choices: severely limiting the role of the state to where there is no benefit in controlling it, or hoping and praying that the Top Men we place into power to regulate our liberty don't fuck us over.
    Democracy greatly inhibits the latter scenario."

    Disagreed.
    A republic should do so (we hope); democracy simply allows 50% of a population to dictate to

  • Sevo||

    Damn squirrels!
    That was supposed to be:
    "democracy simply allows (more than symbol) 50% of a population to dictate to (less than symbol) 50%."

  • Hawk Spitui||

    Democracy greatly inhibits the latter scenario.

    Some people disagree.

  • Sevo||

    Are you hoping I'll read the entire thing to see what you mean? If so, well, you're nuts.
    Pull-quote, reference to paragraph or something. No way I'm wading through that to find out what you mean.

  • Paul.||

    You might be missing something good. Someone else read it, excerpt it, and post the good bits...

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Are you a progressive because you started by believing in nothing at all ("We are nihilists! We believe in nothing!"), thought it through, and wound up a progressive? Of course I can't speak for your own experience, but I suspect that either you are a progressive because your parents were progressives, or you were converted by some book, teacher, or other intellectual experience. Note that this is exactly how one becomes a Catholic.
  • ||

    It's worth reading. I clicked through and it's worth the read.

  • Hawk Spitui||

    Hitler came to power via democracy. Had Wilhelm remained on the throne of Germany, there would have been no Third Reich.

  • Sevo||

    Could be, but Willy wasn't anywhere close to being allowed on the throne.
    Are you a monarchist?

  • granite state destroyer||

    If you call democracy being put in power by a small clique of politicians despite never winning a national election, than sure, Hitler came to power via democracy.

  • Gladstone||

    Hitler supported Gun Rights well except for the Jews. /Gillespie

  • fish||

    ...and he built good roads! /Marge Schott

  • Gladstone||

    You know else like his roads?

  • Ice Nine||

    Dunno about Else but I suspect that Eva did.

  • Gladstone||

    Dang typo. I was refering to Eisenhower.

  • Paul.||

    And in Italy, the trains ran on time! /California.

  • A Serious Man||

    He promised the world ORDER!

  • Gladstone||

    He gave to the World DISORDER!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5LYD0Fzf1LU

  • Ice Nine||

    Great Alt text, Ed!

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Angela Merkel, the current German chancellor, talked about the lessons Germany draws from its history

    No comment.

  • Sevo||

    Wow, man! Deep!
    Uh, was there any intent to your post?

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Yes, it was innocuous bait for a fascist.

    It worked.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 1.30.13 @ 8:37PM |#
    "Yes, it was innocuous bait for a fascist.
    It worked."

    So it was a statement minus content and you found someone who mentioned that.
    And that means 'it worked'.
    Go fuck your dad.

  • gaoxiaen||

    The lesson is censorship.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    I visited an annoying little, liberal Facebook group (I think it was called "Americans Against the Tea Party"?), and one of their photos was a image that said "Fascism, Communism, and Socialism are completely different ideologies. It is impossible to be a leader of all three. Know your politics."

    Excusing for a moment the fact that in Marx's view, Socialism is a gateway to Communism, it takes a small mind to fail to comprehend that that the differences between the three are in their means and not in their ultimate goals. (Take for example, the pact between Hitler and Stalin to conquer and split up Poland.)

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Fascism is a right wing disease - collectivism is a left wing disease.

    Any Poly Sci 101 knows this fact.

  • Jerry on the boat||

    Except for the left-wing roots of fascism in syndicalism.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Except for the people that don't know the definitions of the words...and don't care to know.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 1.30.13 @ 8:31PM |#
    "Fascism is a right wing disease - collectivism is a left wing disease.
    Any Poly Sci 101 knows this fact."

    You're an idiot. Shut up and quit proving it.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    How is Fascism not a collectivism? Sorry, my hatred goes out towards all forms of totalitarianism, but the differences between Fascism and Communism and Socialism is not on the authoritarian/anti-authoritarian spectrum.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Fascism is a political system marked by overt religiousity, nationalism, militarism, patriotism, racism, corporatism, and class exaltation. (GOP 2001-09)

  • Obama's Douche||

    Fascism Progressivism is a political system marked by overt religiousity, nationalism, militarism, patriotism, racism, corporatism, and class exaltation. (Democratic Party 1913-)

  • buybuydandavis||

    I'd say Progressivism is marked by *covert* religiosity - they don't say God, they say Society, but they still claim the right to compel obedience to their vision of the Good.

  • Sevo||

    buybuydandavis| 1.30.13 @ 9:21PM |#
    "I'd say Progressivism is marked by *covert* religiosity"

    I'm not sure it's covert so much as 'post skydaddy'.
    The new religious faith is placed in a extant human rather than a mythical being.
    The faith remains the same and as regards enviro-whackos, the mythology of a 'pristine garden' remains.
    What the 'post skydaddy' religionists don't understand is that the 'skydaddy' religionists are worshiping only an earlier invention of humanity. The 'post skydaddy' religionists are worshiping the current inventions of mankind. And they think this is "scientific" rather than "revealed".
    Religion is NOT some weird bleef delivered from aliens; it has always been the attempt at the current 'powers that be' to co-opt the mores of the time.

  • Drake||

    The Nazis were mostly atheists who worshiped the state as well.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 1.30.13 @ 8:41PM |#
    "Fascism is a political system marked by overt religiousity, nationalism, militarism, patriotism, racism, corporatism, and class exaltation. Soviet Union, 1917-1989"

    FIFY, you stupid shit.
    Do you think that a ridiculous claim by an idiot like you approaches anything believable?
    How stupid are you?

  • JeremyR||

    This is doubly ironic since your namesake actually spoke out against corporatism. How very fascist of her, I guess...

  • Paul.||


    Fascism is a political system marked by overt religiousity, nationalism, militarism, patriotism, racism, corporatism, and class exaltation. (GOP 2001-09)

    You just failed poli-sci 101. They're predominantly economic systems. The window dressing around them is slightly different, but at their core, both economic systems. Startlingly similar economic systems.

  • ||

    Episiarch has claimed that Shriek is a sock, and I had my doubts, but that comment you quoted has cinched it, Paul.

    Epi is right, Shriek is an EPIC TROLL sock (and not a very creative one at that).

  • ant1sthenes||

    Fascism is a political system marked by the concentration of power into the hands of a tiny elite that suffer from a sort of collective malignant narcissism (and usually the ordinary kind as well). That concentration fuels a power addiction that strains against legal barriers (leading to dictatorship), social barriers (leading to totalitarianism), and territorial barriers (leading to international aggression).

    Fascism is always statist, as the state is the only way to get access to the power a fascist craves. It is almost always nationalistic, because they must necessarily unite their subjects and under their rule, and this means nation-building at home. It is almost always militaristic, because you need a military to sate your need to dominate foreign lands (and because it's hard to sell the threat of external foes to a nation without military build-up to show you are solving the problem -- the exception being when you're clearly outclassed and you settle for preaching hate and fear directed at your regional superpower).

  • ant1sthenes||

    As far as religion, corporations, and class go, fascism usually lacks the imagination to come up with a utopian world out of whole cloth; it focuses its ideals on fixing what it perceives as flaws with the existing order (such as, “we don’t have absolute unfettered power”, or, “people openly disagree with us”). So, it leaves the shell of society's institutions intact but turns them all toward the purpose of fascism, by whatever means -- laws, terrorism, bribery, false promises, using propaganda to create unbearable social pressure, infiltration and subversion, or even simple persuasion.

    Corporations (and unions) become extensions of a centrally planned economy that first and foremost serves the political and military goals of fascists; religions disseminate centrally designed messages and provide moral apologia for policies that are at odds with the pre-fascist values of the nation. Fascists use whatever capabilities are at their disposal to ensure that institutions (to say nothing of individuals) either serve as tools, or serve as examples of what happens to those who oppose the fascist agenda.

  • ant1sthenes||

    Still, fascism took the shape of the societies it infested. It united people against racial and religious minorities because people hated racial and religious minorities and could be so manipulated. It used churches because people respected their moral and social authority. It used class exaltation because the very real horrors of socialism in foreign lands and the very real domestic threat of socialist terrorists made people afraid of class agitators. None of these are inherent characteristics of fascism. Even if you want to call them “right wing”, calling fascism right wing makes as much sense as calling The Thing a type of dog.

    In a society (or a part of society) where people are non-religious and moral authority comes from a news anchor or teacher, fascism will ignore or undermine churches and seek to institute fascist control over media organizations and schools. In a society where people are more afraid of spreading Islamist revolution abroad and Islamic terrorism at home than of Marxist revolutionaries and anarchist bombers, fascism will hammer on fear of Terror (generally understood to be a euphemism for Islamists) rather than anti-Communism to justify its increasing lawlessness and militarism.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Fascism is a political system marked by overt religiousity, nationalism, militarism, patriotism, racism, corporatism, and class exaltation.

    The only difference is that socialism substitutes traditional religion for state worship.

  • gaoxiaen||

    It takes one to know one.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    The very nature of Fascism separates citizens into "chosen" classes like Aryans or Christians vs. ethnic minorities like Jews or Negros.

    (See also, GOP- United States)

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 1.30.13 @ 8:48PM |#
    "The very nature of Fascism separates citizens into "chosen" classes like Aryans or Christians vs. ethnic minorities like Jews or Negros.
    (See also, Soviet Union, 1917-1989)"

    Ya know, your stupidity is getting very tired.
    Go fuck your dad, and maybe you can work out your issues, asshole.

  • ant1sthenes||

    Chosen people, like "educated enlightened folk who care" versus "bitter clingers who want children to die", that sort of thing?

    The very nature of Fascism separates people into two categories: Top Men and Those Who Obey. If hate helps bring the majority together into the latter category, then great. But fascists don't usually seek to divide in the long run. They want everyone united beneath them (but anyone they can't own, they must destroy).

  • Guy Incognito||

    What the fuck is "Poly Sci?"

    Mussolini started out as a committed socialist. The Nazis put it IN THEIR NAME, and no, it was not just some coincidental random nod to any old ideology. All the original fascists began as S-O-C-I-A-L-I-S-T-S, and their ideology was only ever an offshoot of that original collectivist bullshit.

    Mussolini even embraced multi-culturalism--under a fascist umbrella, of course. You can still find propaganda posters with dark-skinned African "Dubat Warriors" baring their teeth for the Italian fascist cause.

    Give the Occupy Idiots some real weapons and they would be squadristi in a month. Fast and Furious arms dealing to border cartels? Textbook Fascism 101: Arm and empower criminal gangs to intimidate the law-abiding citizenry until they accept Total Control by One Party and One Leader.

    The re-casting of fascism as a "right-wing" ideology is the biggest steaming load of propagandistic bullshit ever accomplished by the masters of steaming propagandistic bullshit: the Ideological Left.

  • Sevo||

    Fascism = right wing

    Comes from the same apologists as:

    "Fascist Hitler killed 6m Jews; he's horrible.
    Communist Lenin and Stalin only killed 70-80m people of all sorts, but they meant well!"
    It's a way to separate the 'heroes' from the others; Hitler bad, Lenin (Stalin, Mao, etc) good.
    Shreek, in his sad attempt at thinking, hopes he can promote that bullshit.

  • Hawk Spitui||

    The winners get to write the history books. So it goes.

  • granite state destroyer||

    Where do you put Franco? It's hard to make the case that he was a lefty.

  • KDN||

    Franco wasn't much of a Fascist either; there's a reason why he took the Carlists, Fascists, and monarchists together into one party - he wanted to marginalize the influence of the Falange.

    Really Franco was more of a reactionary anachronism than anything else. He's better understood as Spain's Cromwell than Mussolini. Any help he got from the Fascists was out of convenience more than anything else.

  • granite state destroyer||

    Come on. Franco was just as much of a statist as Mussolini on economic matters. There seems to be a lot of denial in this thread about how "collectivist" a lot of the right wing really is. This why libertarians will never have a real home on the right.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Basically, when I hear "Socialism", the definition that runs through my head is "the nationalization of industry under the obstensible goal of populist reform". As far as I can tell, it's a pretty good defintion and it pretty much includes both Hitler's Nazism and Stalin's Soviet communism.

  • Sevo||

    Hitler didn't get the time to do so; the intent was not lacking.
    See "World at Arms", Weinberg, or "Wages of Destruction", Tooze.
    Both make clear the difference is only the amount of time to accomplish the intent.

  • Drake||

    I don't think Hitler planned for government ownership of industry. The Nazi's did absolutely control industries, however, even before they went to a full war-time economy.

  • gaoxiaen||

    And defies our present class of Overlords.

  • gaoxiaen||

    *defines

  • granite state destroyer||

    Get serious. Hitler and Mussolini were beloved by European (and many American) conservatives, and not by accident. You're confusing libertarians with "right wing" - the right wing in general has no commitment to any particular economic system. "Right wing" means primarily perserving tradition, and defending the existing social order and hierarchy. American conservatives typically support a liberal (in European terms) economic policy solely because liberal economic policies are an American tradition. In Europe reactionaries and right-wingers have typically been collectivist because that's the European tradition - in most countries a few aristocrats and royals always owned everything worth owning, which makes a free market appear dangerously "liberal" to a European mind. The Catholic Church has also typically been a voice for reactionary politics but also very anti-free market (and the Catholic Church was a huge supporter of fascists like Franco, Salazar, the Ustashe in Croatia, the Slovak puppet government, etc.).

  • Drake||

    Right-wing / conservative have different meanings on the 2 sides of the Atlantic.

    Mussolini was the model for the New Deal.

  • KDN||

    And Mussolini's Fascism was explicitly modeled on Wilson's War Socialism. Mussolini lived, governed, and died as a man of the left.

  • granite state destroyer||

    No one in Italy would agree with you on that point. Not the leftists, and certainly not Italian conservatives.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    First of all, shriek, it's POLI SCI, as in POLITICAL SCIENCE, not polytycal science. Second, the Left-Right political spectrum is inherently defective in categorizing post-monarchical politics. Third, Fascism, and subsequently, Naziism, arose out syndicalist and socialist movements in response to Soviet Communism. Fourth, you are a complete fucking idiot concerning political theory and political and should stick to you area of expertise, which, from all evidence, appears to be wiggling your thumb around in your rectum.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Palin's Buttplug| 1.30.13 @ 8:31PM |#

    Fascism is a right wing disease - collectivism is a left wing disease

    So fascism isn't collectivist?

    Huh.

  • Paul.||

    Excepting the fact that Mussolini was a former socialist who had become disillusioned with socialism's minor inefficiencies, and thought he could create a 'better' socialism, so he created Fascism. Yeah, totally different. Like venus and mars different!

  • Jerry on the boat||

    Hitler came to power only because of bi-partisan parliamentary support.

  • Sevo||

    And bi-partisan public support.
    He sold specific socialism to each of the various constituencies who were hurting, and each one said 'well, he's a bit of a prick, but he'll save my bacon'.
    And after he was done, there was no bacon left.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    In the 1930s, racist Democrats in the South sold Roosevelt's socialism to their constituents (TVA, public education, labor regulations) in exchange for influence in the the federal government.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Where do you think they got the idea from. Seriously? Germany's Central Planning was held up by the elites of the day as the answer to everything. While the Progressives may have disavowed the Nazis,they've never let go of that dream of a Centrally Planned economy. Some bad ideas you just can't seem to kill.

  • Gladstone||

    Libertarian heroes Randolph Bourne and Mencken gushed over the central planning of Imperial Germany too.

  • Sevo||

    Cite? Never saw anything like that.

  • Gladstone||

    http://www.theatlantic.com/mag.....et/306393/

    In the practical business of operating the state, in its units and as a whole, the final determination of all matters was plainly vested, not in politicians or in majorities, but in experts, in men above all politics, in the superbly efficient ruling caste. The professional mayor, aloof from party passions, unreachable by intrigues, remains today a characteristic German figure: the supreme triumph of intelligence over mere voting power. And one recalls, too, such typical representatives of the new order as Rudolf Virchow, for years a hard-working Berlin city councillor, and Wilhelm Koch, the greatest bacteriologist in the world and Germany's general superintendent of public health, her pre-Gorgasean Gorgas. Koch rid Germany of typhoid fever by penning up the population of whole villages and condemning whole watersheds. It was ruthless, it was unpopular, it broke down and made a mock of a host of 'inalienable' rights—but it worked

  • Gladstone||

    http://books.google.ca/books?i.....q=randolph bourne, our unplanned cities&f=false

    http://books.google.ca/books?i.....q=randolph bourne, german kultur&f=false

  • Gladstone||

  • Gladstone||

  • Sevo||

    Uh, Gladstone, you're going to have to do some editing or selecting:
    "The professional mayor, aloof from party passions, unreachable by intrigues, remains today a characteristic German figure: the supreme triumph of intelligence over mere voting power."
    that don't sound like libertarianism to me; sounds like monarchy.
    How about some pull quotes?

  • Gladstone||

    Well I guess I SFed the links for Bourne.

    So am I complete moron or does that Mencken article show his "gushing" over Imperial Germany?

  • Gladstone||

  • Gladstone||

  • Gladstone||

  • Sevo||

    Gladstone| 1.30.13 @ 10:05PM |#
    "So am I complete moron or does that Mencken article show his "gushing" over Imperial Germany?"

    Uh, *which* Menchen article?
    C'mon, gimme a hint. I'm not in the habit of searching through piles of text to find some evidence of a claim I didn't make.
    Pick one, give me a hint of what I'm looking for.

  • Gladstone||

    Okay you can start about the Atlantic article from Mencken. If you don't want to read the whole thing then look at Section III.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/mag.....et/306393/

  • Gladstone||

    Especially the 2-5 paragraphs.

  • Sevo||

    C'mon. Give us a pull-quote. Give us a 'selection'. Give us something other than 'look here'.
    I can't find anything in Ppg 2-to-5 that says anything about your claim.
    What are you claiming? What specific support do you have for that claim?
    WIH are are you claiming?

  • Gladstone||

    I said Mencken gushed over the central planning of Imperial Germany.

    I quoted him praising the "superbly efficient ruling caste" of Germany and how it was "supreme triumph of intelligence over mere voting power" and how the anti-typhoid campaign "made a mock of a host of 'inalienable' rights—but it worked."

  • Gladstone||

    Here is Mencken gushing over Erich Ludendorff.
    http://www.theatlantic.com/pas.....encken.htm

  • VG Zaytsev||

    ""The professional mayor, aloof from party passions, unreachable by intrigues, remains today a characteristic German figure: the supreme triumph of intelligence over mere voting power."

    Top Men.

  • Ray||

    Way to go out of context; first of all from the previous paragraph it's clear that he's referring to German monarchism, not central planning, secondly it's clear from the next paragraph that he disagrees with the concept.

    In any case, at least in that point of his live, very little of what Mencken wrote was meant to be taken entirely seriously (unless one, for example, thinks he actually supported the genocide of the entire population of the South). On that subject, if you want to attack him effectively from a libertarian perspective, point out his views on eugenics.

    As for Randolph Bourne, I don't think many people consider him to have been a libertarian himself, but many libertarians find his writings on the nature of war to be powerful and quite aligned with the libertarian or classical liberal intellectual tradition.

  • Gladstone||

    Way to go out of context; first of all from the previous paragraph it's clear that he's referring to German monarchism, not central planning, secondly it's clear from the next paragraph that he disagrees with the concept.

    So of the praise of "experts," "efficiency" and the anti-typhoid campaign is not support of some sort of state planning?

    Also where does he disagree with central planning? If anything he seems quite fond of Germany for having no democratic platitudes.

    As for sarcasm well I don't see much evidence that the article is meant to mock Germany. I mean he was Nietzsche fan. Not to mention he spends the whole article being in comtempt of everything he hated in all of his writings.

  • Raven Nation||

    I think there was a study recently that argued that the Nazis found some of their inspiration for their racial theories in American eugenics.

  • Sevo||

    Raven Nation| 1.30.13 @ 9:38PM |#
    "I think there was a study recently that argued that the Nazis found some of their inspiration for their racial theories in American eugenics."

    Wonder if they found the same inspiration from the Swedish eugenics programs?
    "Nevertheless, in Sweden the eugenics program continued until 1975"
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics

  • gaoxiaen||

    But there was sausage, made from human flesh.

  • gaoxiaen||

    But there was sausage made from human flesh.

  • Raven Nation||

    And there were a lot of western European leaders who actually liked Hitler in power because they figured he would be a bulwark against communism. Hell, George V was a fanboy even in 1940.

  • ||

    George V, died in 1936.

    You may be thinking of the Duke of Windsor, who was Edward VIII from 20 January to 11 December 1936, when he abdicated to marry Wallis Simpson.

    As Prince of Wales and King Edward was something of a populist and was quite popular with the working classes.

    He was sympathetic to the Nazis and had close friends in the German government. It is also alleged that Mrs Simpson was Von Ribbentrop's mistress while he was ambassador in London at the same time as she was carrying on with Edward but before they married.

    Less well established are claims that Edward made a deal with the Nazis to become puppet King of Britain after the Germans conquered it. That said, he was sufficiently unreliable that he was sent off to be the Governor of the Bahamas and closely watched for the duration of the war.

  • Raven Nation||

    Definitely agree on your main point on E8; the "less well established claims" are just that. No real proof but no clear innocence.

    Thanks for the save on G5; I got the numbers wrong, I was referring to the war-time king who was G6. Even there, although there appears to be evidence of some early sympathies for Hitler, my "fan-boy" was an overstatement.

  • gaoxiaen||

    His lineage's previous surname was Saschen-Coburg-und Gotha.

  • Sevo||

    Currently reading "Paris, 1919" (Macmillan). Not an easy read, and as yet nothing says 'the Versailles treaty caused Hitler', but some who were the 'victims' of WWII seem to have pasted "kick me" signs on their asses a bit earlier.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I don't know that "caused" is quite the right word. It definatly put Germany in a state that someone like Hitler could take advantage of but there were a lot of other paths they could have gone down.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Hyperinflation caused Hitler. When your reality is that a trillion deutsch marks can't afford you a loaf of bread, all of a sudden the mustachoed dude proclaiming "The Jews did it!" doesn't seem so crazy anymore.

  • Sevo||

    Caleb Turberville| 1.30.13 @ 8:45PM |#
    "Hyperinflation caused Hitler."

    And the question then becomes what caused hyperinflation?
    Obviously, the proximate cause was forgetting to turn off the Marks printing machines, but why so?
    Germany was in a peculiar circumstance, but then (as now) the 'solution' was to kick the problem down the road, print money to 'keep up', and hope it would work out.
    Then (as now), the politicos had no stomach to deal with economic reality.

  • Raven Nation||

    The initial hyperinflation was early 1920s. In the 1930s, it was a mild form of inflation that caused Germans to fear a return of hyperinflation that strengthened a bunch of populist groups from left to right. Plus the unemployment caused by the Great Depression.

    Hitler's "stab in the back" claim, anti-Semitism, and anti-reparations were common crap for a bunch of groups in Germany. They kind of all worked together to create Nazi power.

    Anti-semitism in France was much worse than in Germany but they didn't go down that path.

  • Sevo||

    Raven Nation| 1.30.13 @ 9:32PM |#
    The initial hyperinflation was early 1920s. In the 1930s, it was a mild form of inflation that caused Germans to fear a return of hyperinflation that strengthened a bunch of populist groups from left to right. Plus the unemployment caused by the Great Depression.
    Hitler's "stab in the back" claim, anti-Semitism, and anti-reparations were common crap for a bunch of groups in Germany. They kind of all worked together to create Nazi power."
    Agreed. Hitler was able to trade on several issues and AFAIK, he was a powerful speaker. Which is one reason I refuse to listen to political speeches; print 'em and I'll read 'em.

    "Anti-semitism in France was much worse than in Germany but they didn't go down that path."
    Well, yes they did 'go down that path', but they didn't have to murder them. They simply rounded them up and handed them over to the Krauts and 'kept their hands clean'.

  • Raven Nation||

    Good point on the French. I guess what I was getting at was that the French did not initiate their own anti-semitic pogrom in the 1930s. Obviously a distinction without a difference.

    I usually make the point about the French to my students to emphasize that vicious racism is not a product of one social system or national background.

  • granite state destroyer||

    What people always miss is that 10 million ethnic Germans ended up outside Germany after World War I. Cities like Prague, Danzig, Kattowitz and Brno had always been considered "German" cities in the German popular mind, and the Hapsburg Empire had been a German controlled Empire, which was now gone as well. Ordinary Germans found the sudden increased political power of non-Germans in their eastern neighbors very scary, and this made them ripe for a demagogue like Hitler. Imagine if the US lost a war and Texas was handed over to Mexico and Florida became an independent nation with Spanish as its official language? How long would it take the US to elect a nationalistic militarist demagogue?

  • Invisible Finger||

    The US has been installing nationalistic militarist demagogues from day 1.

    I'm trying to think of a POTUS who wasn't and I'm having a hard time.

  • gaoxiaen||

    The French caused WWII. If they would have fired on Nazi troops marching into the Saarland, the Nazis would have retreated. Apparently no cheese-eating surrender monkeys fired on the invaders.

  • Sevo||

    What is becoming more clear (that book; "Post War", Judt; "Wages of Destruction", Tooze, and some others) is that the reparations were never as great as German propaganda claimed. Hungary, for example was saddled with heavier claims.
    But Hitler was careful to not only use appointments in the financial ministries but to have Goebbels for assistance in claiming victimhood.
    Regardless, he *was* a product of "democracy", and that should be enough to frighten anyone who thinks that's an end.

  • Raven Nation||

    Although Judt was a life-long lefty, "Post War" is an astonishing piece of scholarship. I started off tagging the pages where he made a great point or I learned something new, but gave up when I was tagging about every third page.

  • Sevo||

    My copy has yellow stickies hanging out the side such that I can't tell which one is important.
    Glad to hear someone else found him a lefty but too honest to foul his own nest. I make the same claim of Manchester and "The Arms of Krupp"

  • Raven Nation||

    Haven't read that one yet. May as well add it to the list that is already too long for me to complete before I die.

  • granite state destroyer||

    Yes, Tooze points out that West and East Germany actually paid substantially higher reparations after World War II.

  • Pro Libertate||

    The Germans did far worse to the Russians when they defeated them, so all that whining was complete and utter bullshit.

    What we've learned, in fact, is that the allies should've occupied Germany, demilitarized it, split it in half, then let it reunite sixty years later. In 1918, I mean.

  • ||

    Don't forget that they should have raped the shit out of all the German women. That was the key to the lasting peace we've had.

  • ||

    Who says they didnt?

  • ||

    Yeah, this stuff was on the news here, and let's just say it wasn't the most complimentary either way. One of the fastest ways for an American, in Euro-landia, to get their ass kicked is to start spouting off about WWII.

    A trip in The Wayback Machine...

  • Sevo||

    GM,
    You don't get to post a random link. What is it you object to?

  • ||

    No objections, just adding to the discussion about the sexual assaults on German women and wasn't intended to be inflammatory. The link was to the sub-thread that discussed this subject and germane to this discussion.-)

  • Sevo||

    Still missing the point. Wanna give me time stamps?

  • ||

    Your wish is my command. In fact, you commented on this.

  • Sevo||

    GM,
    Still not sure I got the connection. I can be dense; how about a clear comment?
    Suthenboy,
    "He said they were ordered to go as far and as fast as they could to grab as much of germany as possible before the soviets could."
    I'd bet that was 3rd Army. As far as the bare butt, I'm gonna claim that the US troops were not saints, but certainly were not the opposite.

  • ||

    GM,
    Still not sure I got the connection. I can be dense; how about a clear comment?

    Warty said German women should have had the shit raped out of them, then Suthenboy replies, "Who said they didn't?" The thread to which I linked discussed the war atrocities committed by Russian soldiers to German women after Deutchland was pummeled into submission.

    This wikipaedia entry covers this. Basically, while being here, I have found that discussing WWII is something that should be done tactfully, especially if the person to whom you are talking is an older person.

  • gaoxiaen||

    The Americans were hanged for rape. For the Russians rape was SOP. NTHAWWT.

  • ||

    A mean old son of a bitch that I knew years ago was part of the push into germany at the end of the war. He said they were ordered to go as far and as fast as they could to grab as much of germany as possible before the soviets could. Drive the fucking jeeps and tanks as fast as they would go. When they ran out of gas get out and run.

    After that was over he told me he was walking down the street in some little town. He came to a doorway to a shop and a german girl was standing in the there. He looked at her. She cast her eyes at the ground, turned around and lifted her skirt.

    Apparently there rape is an expected result of losing a war.

  • Paul.||

    . She cast her eyes at the ground, turned around and lifted her skirt.

    Apparently there rape is an expected result of losing a war

    When my ex-wife comes over to the house, I lift my skirt.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Better than a bullet to the head. And maybe appreciative.

  • granite state destroyer||

    The British and the French didn't have the manpower or the resolve to occupy Germany in 1918. Maybe if the US had sent another few hundred thousand men over to die we could have pulled it off, but no one in the US felt like it was worth the effort.

  • ||

    Hitler: A Libertarian Hero. Free roads, free cars, free uniforms for everyone.

  • Rich||

    New here?

  • Sevo||

    cmace| 1.30.13 @ 8:32PM |#
    "Hitler: A Libertarian Hero. Free roads, free cars, free uniforms for everyone."

    Sarc?
    Shreek with a new addy?
    Stupidity?

  • AlmightyJB||

    He must be confusing Liberal and Libertarian. His parents should be sending him to bed soon anyways.

  • Kreel Sarloo||

    Sarcasm, perhaps.

  • Gladstone||

    Well he did oppose British and American Imperialism which should make him a hero to Raimondo, Rockwell and Richman.

  • JeremyR||

    Not to mention the hating Jews part.

    Oh wait, I mean "neoconservatives". That makes it okay.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I lol'd.

  • Pro Libertate||

    So they celebrate Hitler's accession to power in Germany? Wow, I find that rather surprising.

  • ||

    I would say they "observe" rather than "celebrate" it.

    As the original post suggests, telling of the events and circumstances of Hitler's accession to power serves as a cautionary tale. "Those who fail to learn history..." etc.

    While celebrating it would be obscene, just turning away and pretending it never happened would be a huge mistake.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I was just making a funny.

  • ||

    It's not funny, dammit.

  • A Serious Man||

    OT: Anyone going to watch the new show 'The Americans' on FX tonight? I DVR'd it and it looks interesting: the KGB recruits a couple to pose as husband and wife and live in the suburbs of DC in 1981, kind of like a spy genre version of Mad Men.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I'm DVR'ing it as well. Previews looked good. You ever see the movie "No Way Out"? Kostner and Hackman.

  • Ted S.||

    You ever see the movie "No Way Out"? Kostner and Hackman.

    It's a remake of The Big Clock.

    Alternatively, you may want to watch the completely unrelated 1950 movie No Way Out.

  • ||

    Yes. It is set in the TiVo and I look forward to 80s KGB sleeper agent paranoia memories.

  • ||

    Morning all! Just an addition to this, but the converse: The second weekend I was here, my neighbour invited me over for dinner with his family (UKR's are notably hospitable) and he speaks some English fairly well.

    He has a collection of American movies dealing with the subject of Soviet espionage and KGB paranoia and he often notes with (mostly) amusement at how Soviets and Russians are (dismally and cartoonishly) portrayed in American media, particularly the 80's (these films at one time were REALLY hard to acquire, obvs).

    His favourites are "Red Heat" (mostly for Ah-nold's awful Russian accent) and "Firefox" (that one was actually somewhat accurate), and he also has "The Americans" (All the movies are in English but subtitled). It's really fascinating how much our entertainment is really propaganda on many levels, and he understood better why Americans tend to have the view of Russians that they do when he started traveling to the US for business for a time.

    This is why everyone should love splatter flicks and horror movies, since they are all about the camp and the gore and usually not some political cudgel morality tale.

  • Sevo||

    OK, but I'm pretty sure there isn't any sort of 'equivalence' between the USSR and the US.
    FDR was a 'equality' hypocrite and an ignorant asshole, but compared to, oh, Stalin, he was a saint.

  • ||

    Oh, no question on that. My comment was moreso about how Russians were (are) portrayed in popular American culture, how stereotypes are proliferated, and how the folks being stereotyped react, since I have a few that I can ask directly.-)))

    Also interesting is how Soviet propaganda does exactly the same thing. The intertoobz has dispelled a lot of myths, but, unfortunately, potentiated a lot of new ones.

  • Sevo||

    Gotta ask:
    have you seen the (2) photos of the Red Army EM on top of the German Chancery? The first one with the several wrist-watches on his arm, and the second with them not-so-artfully 'removed'?
    I'll make my view clear: The Russians in WWII suffered horribly from the Germans and from Stalin. Which one was worse, I can't tell.

  • ||

    Yes, I have, Sevo. And yes, they did suffer terribly. Which one was worse depends entirely upon whom you are asking.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Uncle Josef during WWII. 90% of German casualties were Soviet-induced.

  • Paul.||

    I come from Eastern European stock. My mom was a Czech. She told me about the Russians after WWII. My dad was liberated by the Russians from prison camp after WWII. The tales they both told me made the American-movie Russians seem lighthearted, tame and somewhat subdued.

  • ||

    The tales they both told me made the American-movie Russians seem lighthearted, tame and somewhat subdued.

    That's why I said "dismal and cartoony", Paul. These people know their (recent) brutal history. Keep in mind my GF is Russian-Ukrainian and I'm learning quickly a different culture's POV that didn't make it into the history books. Another is one of my colleagues (Belarussian) whose bapki was a prisoner in a German camp near Minsk, and only escaped for no other reason than the SS guard took pity on her and told her to escape.

    With "Red Heat", my neighbour thought Ah-nold was a bad caricature. In fact, he asked me, "What GAMBY?" So, I explained to him the magic of Gumby and Pokey. Then he got the joke (sorta).

  • Paul.||

    Yeah, I never saw Red Heat (it looked cartoony) so I certainly can't comment on that.

    The tales my parents told me (tales of first-hand experience) followed more like the initial scenes from Enemy at the Gates

    "Run into the German guns. Yes, you'll probably be killed. If you don't run into the German guns, we'll kill you. And we'll kill you for insubordination. And we'll kill you for cowardice. Or desertion. Or looting. Basically, we'll kill you."

    Both my mother and father essentially said that every time they encountered Russian officers, they were drunk. If you were lucky, he had a good disposition. My mother had an encounter as a late teenager with a Russian officer who had a good disposition. He offererd to pay my grandfather (her father) for her hand in marriage. My father ran into drunk russian solders who didn't have such a pleasant disposition.

    And realize, anything I say about the Russians which is negative or disparaging is said with the utmost respect. I love those people. I just wouldn't want to be on their bad side. Germany got on their bad side.

  • ||

    Drunk Russians, the odds, what are they.-)))

    No offence was taken, Paul. I love them too (and quickly falling head over heels for one in particular. Just waiting for the right time to tell her.-))))

    The first two positive words that come to mind are: "Blunt" and "Loyal". The two negative: "Vindictive" and "Aloof". One thing I love more than anything else is: You know exactly where you stand with a Russian or Ukrainian. Words, minced they are not. And Germany found this out the hard way.

  • ||

    "..quickly falling head over heels for one in particular.."

    None of us saw that coming...nope, not at all.

  • granite state destroyer||

    Come to Poland. We are happy to say negative and disparaging things about Russians and Ukrainians, with no respect at all. You Czechs are so PC...

  • ||

    Correction on "The Americans", I was thinking of a different movie, "The American" (George Clooney, his wife luuurrvs The Cloonster) but that was set mostly in Italy.

    He also has this gem of awfulness.

  • Sevo||

    No comment, never saw it, tried to sort through the link, got nowhere.
    No comment.

  • Paul.||

    Did anyone understand that movie The American with Clooney?

    Why he had to be all super-secret and stealth while building a fucking silencer? Jesus. If the 'clank' of a hammer at 3 in the afternoon will send an army of counter spy spooks to your location, you need a new location.

  • Drake||

    I watched it half paying attention on HBO. All I got was some nice scenery and pretty women then Clooney dies (spoiler alert).

  • ||

    SURPRISE SURPRISE SURPRISE!!

    http://www.kansascity.com/2013.....r-gdp.html

    The massive isncrease in GDP was, well, kind of not.

  • JeremyR||

    Does that factor in the rise of GDP you should expect because of there simply being more money printed? If so, yikes.

  • Rich||

    A surprising reversal in the economic recovery ... sent experts scrambling for explanations Wednesday.

    Economics: The science of explaining why your predictions were wrong.

  • ||

    Dont economists wear robes and tall pointy hats printed with lots of suns moons and stars on them?

  • Paul.||

    Most should be wearing tall, pointy hats while sitting in the corner of the classroom. Hats sans moons and stars, of course.

  • Hyperion||

    Oh, this conversation again. The merits of Fascism vs. Communism vs. Socialism.

    None of them have any merits, in that they are all paths to the same goal, totalitarianism. Doesn't make any difference what name your oppressor chooses, or what scheme they used to get where they are, you are still being oppressed.

    And calling any of the above mentioned isms, a new pretty name, like Progessive, doesn't make it a better flavor of tyranny, you fuckheads who call yourself that.

  • Sevo||

    Hyperion| 1.30.13 @ 9:44PM |#
    "Oh, this conversation again..."

    No "conversation". Just Shreek claiming his dad didn't like him so Nazis are right-wing, etc.

  • Hyperion||

    Shreek also claims to be Libertarian and is obsessed with whether Boosh was worse than Obama, like anyone around here cares since they both suck donkey ballz.

  • Homple||

    “I wonder how many Germans looked around in 1933 and said, ‘C'mon. How much worse could it really get?’”
    ~Brad Thor

  • Sevo||

    That's FUNNY!

  • granite state destroyer||

    It's funny, cuz it's true. People generally have no idea...

  • Sevo||

    BTW, I had a German grandfather who died in Auschwitz.
    He locked the door from the inside and they beat him to death,

  • gaoxiaen||

    That's what I thought in Somalia in 1992.

  • Jim Walsh||

    And as we all know, Hitler was a strong believer in _________________ (insert policies of opposing political party here)...

  • Lyle||

    Reason should be working towards undermining Godwin's Law not reinforcing it. Thanks.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    You know who else hated being compared to Hitler?

  • Obama's Douche||

    BOOOOSH!!!

  • T o n i||

    Libertarians and Republicans?

  • Episyarch||

    Your Mom?

  • ||

    So liberals love being compared to Hitler?

  • T o n i||

    Libertarians and Republicans hate it because it is true.

    Democrats hate it because it is false

  • LTC(ret) John||

    T O N Y must have gotten "the operation".

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    I just saw an ad for L Ron Hubbard that looked like an episode of Biography.
    Scientology doing another membership drive?

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Alison Brie will be on Letterman tonight.

  • ||

    Probably to plug that dumbass show she's on.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Mad Men?

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Mad Men?

  • ||

    http://cdn.sourcefednews.com/w.....n-Brie.jpg

    Huh? Sorry... blanked out for a minute there.

  • ||

    Fuck. I saw Blue Velvet a few days ago and now I can't stop listening to Roy Orbison

    http://youtu.be/zbxsmcT7GOk

  • SKR||

    mommy

  • Ted S.||

    Why don't you try Blue Velvet again?

    Or if you need a different earworm, try a different song from the same artist.

  • ||

    Vinton is good, but he just doesn't do it for me. Orbison has a unique emotional quality.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    what's more pointless?

    Arguments about the "real" definition of fascism?

    or

    Arguments about the "real" cause of the Civil War?

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