November 18, 2008

“German Students Lay Waste to Holocaust Exhibit”

Anybody else getting a strong sense of deja vu? Mine started at about that time our New Left charismat gave his speech in Germany, and deepened while he stood amid fake pillars, evoking the mythos of a democratic ideal that has been rightfully repudiated by the better considered democratic republic because of the potential of the former to devolve into the tyranny of the majority.

But then, I’ve spent the last six months on ‘shrooms, so I’m overstating the intensity, I think. Plus, ODS!

From John Rosenthal, PJM:

Last Wednesday, hundreds, if not thousands, of students ostensibly protesting poor conditions in German schools stormed the main building of Berlin’s historic Humboldt University: smashing windows, occupying seminar rooms, strewing rolls of toilet paper in the lobby and courtyard, and even setting at least one fire. Most astonishingly, the protesters also laid waste to an exhibit in the entry hall of the building devoted to the Nazi persecution of the Jews. The exhibit was titled “Betrayed and Sold: Jewish Businesses in Berlin 1933-1945.” According to reports on the German news site Spiegel-Online and in the popular German tabloid Bild, virtually all the poster boards making up the exhibit were damaged and, as photo evidence shows, some were fully ripped in two. Eyewitnesses cited by Spiegel-Online say that the rioters who destroyed the exhibit were adolescents around thirteen years old.

Interviewed by Spiegel-Online, a researcher at the university reported that when he informed rioters that the university had visitors from Israel and asked “What will they think?” one young man responded “F*ck Israel!” [Scheiß Israel] and proceeded to attack him. Reacting to suggestions that the students may not have realized what the subject of the exhibit was, police chief Peter-Michael Haeberer told Bild: “Leaving aside the fact that university employees and other witnesses pointed it out to them, even a dyslexic could not have failed to recognize that it was an exhibit about the persecution of the Jews. The perpetrators knew exactly what they were doing.” “Our assumption is that the exhibit was purposely attacked and that anti-Semitic motives were involved,” Haeberer added.

The incident occurred merely three days after Chancellor Angela Merkel and other German dignitaries solemnly commemorated the 70th anniversary of the infamous Kristallnacht pogroms, during which thousands of Jewish-owned shops and synagogues were destroyed throughout Germany. A German video report on the rioting from Spiegel-TV is available here. A six-part series of short amateur clips documenting the raucous scene inside and out front of the Humboldt building can be viewed here, here, here, here, here, and here. Spiegel puts the number of rioters at “up to a thousand.” But the video evidence suggests a larger number.

The rioters were part of a larger protest organized by an association named “Break Down the Educational Barriers,” which militates for free education and smaller class sizes, while employing a marked “anti-capitalist” rhetoric. The current aim of the German school system, according to a “Break Down the Educational Barriers” leaflet, is “to produce labor power for the corporations cheaply and quickly.” In an open letter published on its website, the association regretted the fact that protesters had destroyed the exhibit, but claimed that this was the spontaneous “result of the students’ long built-up rage.”

[...]

Only three weeks ago, the German economist Hans-Werner Sinn, head of the IFO Institute in Munich, compared the anti-management hysteria linked to the current global financial crisis to the demonization of Jews in the aftermath of the 1929 stock market crash. “During every crisis one looks for … scapegoats,” Sinn told the daily Die Tagesspiegel, “During the global economic crisis of 1929, nobody wanted to believe that the problem was an anonymous systemic defect either. Back then, it was the Jews who were targeted in Germany; today it is the managers.” Sinn was pilloried for his remarks in the German press. But the scene of the humiliation of the conference participant — with its eerie parallels to the public humiliation of Jews by SA gangs during the early years of Nazi rule — suggests just how pertinent Sinn’s comparison in fact was. In any case, as the storming of Humboldt University perfectly illustrates, “anti-capitalist” sentiment and anti-Semitic resentments tend in Germany to go hand-in-hand. They were already indeed inseparable elements of Nazi ideology. (For another recent example, involving Social Democratic Party Chairman Franz Müntefering’s famous description of investment firms as “locusts,” see here and here.)

Of course, this is probably just so much Jew hysteria. You know how that kind likes to milk its victimhood.

Somewhere, an Iranian mullah smiles — and in the Arab world, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion enters its 295th printing…

Posted by Jeff G. @ 11:12am
187 comments | Trackback

Comments (187)

  1. Silly neocon, IT could never happen again.

  2. Weak segue, but I understand the difficulty in making all things tangentially Obama-icky.

  3. I dunno, thor, I thought that Germany is one of the proctors of the “global test”, what with being our socialist BMW-assembling slack-jawed yokel subsidizing betters?

  4. “The current aim of the German school system, according to a “Break Down the Educational Barriers” leaflet, is “to produce labor power for the corporations cheaply and quickly.”

    That sounds like the SDS kids at my old college.

    Those damn corporations!! Why work for them when instead you can just vote for the correct politicians who will take their money and give it away? With a little cut off the top course.

  5. the association regretted the fact that protesters had destroyed the exhibit, but claimed that this was the spontaneous “result of the students’ long built-up rage.”

    Somewhere in hell, Joseph Goebbels smiles through his eternal torment at that phrase.

  6. I mean, why else would Obama! hold a massive campaign rally there? I mean, Germany does have a lot of electoral votes, but still………….

  7. Apparently, thor didn’t get the message about Obama wanting to buy the world a Coke and keep it company.

    Neither did the German kids who trashed the Holocaust exhibit, apparently.

  8. Mr Pink is right on!

    The connection to Obama by way of the New Left is there. One just needs to be willing to look.

    Which is not to say Obama will ever follow such a path, of course. Just that nothing in his previous “pragmatic” road to power suggests otherwise.

  9. Better curtail your commenting here, Thor, and get on that important task of how this is all a far-right, capitalist conspiracy.

  10. Voices from Kristallnacht:

    “Yea, um Saul, it’s regrettable that your antique business was trashed and fired but, you know, there’s just no way we could control the pent up rage at the Jews exploiting the Aryans. you dig?”

  11. Coming soon to your town courtesy of the Bill and Bernadine Educational Reform Foundation® a fully Federally funded non-partisan organizing collective.

  12. Last Wednesday, hundreds, if not thousands, of students ostensibly protesting poor conditions in German schools stormed the main building of Berlin’s historic Humboldt University: smashing windows, occupying seminar rooms, strewing rolls of toilet paper in the lobby and courtyard, and even setting at least one fire.

    So, in order to protest poor conditions, they made the conditions even worse?

  13. So, in order to protest poor conditions, they made the conditions even worse?

    Misery loves happiness.

  14. And, yeah, I get the “educational reform group with anti-capitalist leanings” tie-in, too. It’s like all the world’s douchebags have gotten the same memo.

  15. Now might be a good time to get that Isro straightened, and contact Dr Green (nee Greenberg) about having your hook shaved down into a nice little Waspish bump.

  16. …that could have been, potentially, the LEAST sensible thing I’ve ever said.

    *company

    Jeez. Apparently this cold virus is melting my brain.

  17. Hey Geoff would this fit that bill?

    http://snipurl.com/5sftw

  18. Humboldt University is a beautiful place.
    They have the spot where the books were burned marked off for the convenience of future protestors.
    Perhaps the Prop 8 folks can get some pointers.

  19. I’m glad Dietrich Bonhoeffer is not here to read this.

  20. I’m sure thor would’ve been right in there throwing bricks through windows.

  21. #3 –
    HOT DAMN! I’m being subsidized by BMW???

    Now I can afford to head for Whole Foods and buy me one of them expensive chickens.

  22. Nah, that would require moving. thor is inactive fluff. Vitriolic inactive fluff, but inactive fluff all the same.

  23. Funny you should mention Dietrich Bonhoffer, thor. The Presbyterian Church USA has a “Confessing Church” movement built upon the foundation of Barth’s and Bonhoffer’s organization.

  24. thor drops his name almost as often as he does Celine. It’s how he lets you know just how fucking smart he is.

  25. Oliver Kamm has been documenting and chronicling the associations of Left antisemites for years.

  26. thor drops his name almost as often as he does Celine. It’s how he lets you know just how fucking smart he is.

    No, it’s an indication on how narrow his frame of reference is.

  27. Wikipedia: Bonhoeffer … became frustrated with … “liberal theology” after discussions [with] Karl Barth, an eminent theologian. Barth believed that “liberal theology” (understood as emphasizing personal experience and societal development) minimized Scripture, reducing to a mere textbook of metaphysics while sanctioning the deification of human culture.

    I’m sorry he isn’t here, thor. It’d be fun watching him slap you bowlegged.

    Regards,
    Ric

  28. “Comment by Jack Klompus on 11/18 @ 11:56 am #

    thor drops his name almost as often as he does Celine.”

    Celine Dion?

    That’s REALLY smart.

  29. Not such a weak segue, for several reasons:

    The first is that Obama has cloaked his campaign symbolism in ‘social realism’– art, posters, etc. Secondly, his supporters have embraced, wittingly or not, many of the ideological activities of National Socialism–rallies, parades, even youth organizations. Thirdly, his supporters–who admittedly include a wide range of groups–have tolerated little dissent from their targets.

    While little or none of this can be laid at Obama’s door, it seems to be true that a global zeitgeist is starting to take shape. Just as the economic shocks of the late 20s led to the mass movements of the 30s, so runs a similar current in today’s world, particularly among the ‘activist’ young. You could argue that things were always this way–but in the past year I’ve definitely noticed an uptick. I would say that Obama is more of a symptom–one happy to take advantage of the climate–than an instigator of it, tho.

  30. Barth had a tremendous influence on Flannery O’Connor. Along with Tielhard de Chardin. And O’Connor despised those whose notion of the metaphysical good was tied to “good works”.

    Just in case we’re still dropping names.

  31. Killdozer has a great line in a song, “Lupus took the life of Flannery O’Connor…She wrote many books ’til death came upon her…”

  32. Hatey German students and gay marriage activists act a lot the same I think. I don’t get why that is. You’d think they’d be dissimilar but not so much really.

  33. Mr. Pink

    Tinyurl is good. Only problem is it doesn’t indicate if the link might be NSFW.

    What I made a long time ago was a short notepad file of the HTML formats I used and then it would be a copy-paste operation to put them in a comment.

  34. These folks could have benefited from the event my husband, a firearms expert, participated over the weekend here in Sunny Central Texas: “Jews with .22s”

  35. …and I would love Mary Grace from “Revelation” to go Mrs. Turpin on thor.

  36. Yeah I was going to wait till I get off work to look at the links you posted. I am bout to get off work now and am busy as all hell. That link was SFW by the way, it is just a link to a NYTimes article on the deliberate targeting of Koreans during the King riots in LA, with a reference to targeting of Jews during the Watts riots in the 50′s.

  37. Geez, Jeff. You mean to tell me you saw The One speak at a column which owes its current height and position to a certain mid-century Austrian politician, and you saw the adulation of a quarter-million sieg-heiling Germans, and you thought that had some political, er, resonance?

    I mean, yeah, the Kaiser’s militarism was a problem, but we’ve hardly had any trouble with would-be global overlords since then.

  38. buster: part of A&M Hillel correct?

  39. Why all this push to paint the Nazis as Leftists? They were ultra-nationalists (Ultra-Right-wing). What, is Stalinist Russia no longer a big enough boogey-man? Both Nazi Germany and Stalin’s Russia were *Totalitarian*, but at least ostensibly Russia’s revolution was Leftist. What the Nazis did was elevate the German nation to God-like status. They brought totalitarianism in the name of security, patriotism, national-identity and a strong-military. Totalitarianism is the opposite of libertarianism, and extremists on both the Left and Right can have totalitarian leanings.

  40. Why all this push to paint the Nazis as Leftists?

    Interest in the accuracy of history. They were National Socialists, after all.

  41. “Interest in the accuracy of history.” No, a tremendous distortion of history really. They were ‘socialist’ in name only to trick some of the Left into supporting them early on. They quickly sent many on the Left to the camps along with the Jews, gays, etc.. once they had power.

  42. Totalitarianism is the opposite of libertarianism, and extremists on both the Left and Right can have totalitarian leanings.

    Let us speak of what we know.

  43. No, a tremendous distortion of history really.

    No, not really.

    They were ’socialist’ in name only to trick some of the Left into supporting them early on.

    How much do you really know about the Nazi’s domestic/economic programs?

    They quickly sent many on the Left to the camps along with the Jews, gays, etc.. once they had power.

    Yes, but that was a matter of eliminating the “deviationists” in their own camp, not because they weren’t lefties. Lenin and Stalin did much the same thing.

  44. “Let us speak of what we know.” O.K. so let’s talk about Obama and old-school Democrats. I’d say he is less interested in government control than the previous generation of Dems. For example, Hillary wanted single-payer health care. Obama wants health care you can take with you from one job to the next. On economics, compared to old-school Dems, Obama is move TOWARDS libertarianism. And, of course on social issues (abortion, same-sex marriage) the Dems have consistently been more libertarian than the Right. Finally on national security, the Republicans used to be the Realists to the Dems Idealists, but now that is reversed. So, while I would not claim Obama is a libertarian, out of a choice between McCain, and Hillary and him, he is arguably the most libertarian of the three.

  45. I’ve been accused of being a minimal expectations kind of guy before………but I’m actually kind of proud of these German youth for coming up with enough gumption to riot. All this time I’ve been thinking that Europeans were all just total pussies. Maybe they’re getting a little of their mojo back.

  46. Except, Sticky B, they’re rioting because they want a bigger slice of the pie, not because they’re not allowed to make their own pie. Their motives suck worse than their methods.

  47. The Nazis did unload political opponents particularly communists and clergymen into the Sachsenhausen camp outside of Berlin.

  48. “out of a choice between McCain, and Hillary and him, he is arguably the most libertarian of the three”

    While McCain may be quite statist, Obama is the epitome of big government liberalism. I don’t recall McCain making calls for radical expansion of the government along the lines of $500 billion “Civilian Defense Force.” Davey, you have picked two nonsensical paths to pursue thus far on this thread.

  49. “How much do you really know about the Nazi’s domestic/economic programs?”

    On economics, much like in Italy, they favored “whatever works”, government or private. Remember this was also FDRs moment in the US. Economics was moving to the Left everywhere, but that hardly makes their ideology socialist (unlike the founders of the Russian revolution who clearly DID have a socialist ideology).

    One thing to look at is what was going on in academia. Traditionally there is a strong Leftist strain there which balances Right-wing efforts elsewhere. But due to a strand of Right-Hegelian thought, nationalism had actually become fashionable is parts of academia. There was a collapse of the Left in this standard bastion of the Left. Then with HUGE general dissatisfaction in the population, the ultra-Right has a unique opportunity, and took it.

    It really is somewhat disturbing that we are even having this conversation. We should not try to distort what the Nazis REALLY were.

  50. Socialism, State ownership of all or most all property especially the “means of production”. It is a form of “water empire” with jobs replacing the water in the original.

    Communism the State ownership is de jure.

    Fascism the State ownership is de facto.

    That fascism is on the right was a successful propaganda effort by Stalin. A lie by a master of lying.

  51. #

    Comment by Jack Klompus on 11/18 @ 11:56 am #

    thor drops his name almost as often as he does Celine. It’s how he lets you know just how fucking smart he is.

    No. I’ve consistently argued that Celine was smart. Most in academia argue that he was nothing more than a chuckling butthole. If you were smart you’d know that.

  52. “Civilian Defense Force”

    I think this is another boogey-man of the Right. The Obama proposal (note NOT mandatory), seems to be to increase community service in a variety of forms. Nothing scary there.

    Now Rahm’s own ideas, from what I can tell, are more like an Israeli style plan, where are citizens are required to due militarily serves, or something closes to that. That’s a big difference. I see no real evidence Obama has plans like that. But, we’ll see. If I’m wrong, I would agree that would be a big anti-libertarian move.

  53. “It really is somewhat disturbing that we are even having this conversation”

    Yes, indeed because it clearly implies the logical end point of modern progressivism is in fact totalitarian.

    Mussolini was indeed an ardent international socialist until his service in World War I turned his views inward into national socialism.
    - “His earliest, and one of the best known, was Italy’s equivalent of the Green Revolution, known as the “Battle for Grain”, in which 5,000 new farms were established and five new agricultural towns on land reclaimed by draining the Pontine Marshes.”

    -”Mussolini also initiated the “Battle for Land”, a policy based on land reclamation outlined in 1928. The initiative had a mixed success; while projects such as the draining of the Pontine Marsh in 1935 for agriculture were good for propaganda purposes, provided work for the unemployed and allowed for great land owners to control subsidies, other areas in the Battle for Land were not very successful.”

    -He pursued the “”Gold for the Fatherland” initiative, by encouraging the public to voluntarily donate gold jewellery such as necklaces and wedding rings to government officials in exchange for steel wristbands bearing the words “Gold for the Fatherland”. Even Rachele Mussolini donated her own wedding ring. The collected gold was then melted down and turned into gold bars, which were then distributed to the national banks.”

    Mussolini was indeed a socialist.

    - I.G. Farben was the conglomeration of many subsidiary companies with overt gov’t guidance.

    Leftism today aims for similar control over critical industries for whatever their ideology demands.

  54. One thing to look at is what was going on in academia. Traditionally there is a strong Leftist strain there which balances Right-wing efforts elsewhere. But due to a strand of Right-Hegelian thought, nationalism had actually become fashionable is parts of academia. There was a collapse of the Left in this standard bastion of the Left.

    No, academia fused the nationalism with their preference for socialism — NATIONAL SOCIALISM. The Soviets pushed global, international socialism. The Fascists pushed “socialism at home”, and many who, even today, are considered influential on the left praised Fascism explicitly because of its socialist component.

  55. “increase community service in a variety of forms.”

    That doesn’t negate the face it will take an expansion of bureaucracy to accomplish it. Please review previous threads on this site for more info on this. I’m not inclined to explain the compulsion inherent in Rahm and Obama’s statements thus far.

  56. If you were smart you’d know that.

    If you were smart you’d realize what a sniveling dickhole you are and how everyone here would celebrate your violent demise, you frothing pseudo-intellectual punch-line.

  57. The biggest Obama supporters were and are prominent and extreme leftists like Kos and Soros. To assert that Obama is libertarian, requires a profound ignorance of his positions taken to gain their support. It may reveal an attempt to redefine left and right as radically different than what is conventionally understood, or it may reveal the convictions of a naif.

  58. “That fascism is on the right was a successful propaganda effort by Stalin.”

    One problem we start to get into as we go back in time is keeping clear what we mean by “Left” and “Right”. At one point “Left” was the capitalists and democracy and “power to the middle class”, while the “Right” was the monarchy, and traditionalists (the church for example). This is relevant to Russia since they got rid of a monarch. Of course they went far to the Left in the process, and then ended up installing a new set of rulers, so that didn’t work out too well for them….

    From those definitions we’d have a problem, since the Nazis were neither capitalists, nor democratically minded, nor socialist, nor monarchists.

    Yes, they moved economically to the Left, as did the whole world, but their driving ideology was pure German nationalism and national identity. This they had in common with the German monarchists that claim before them. In the 1800s Prussia united the various German states under the flag of German nationalism.

  59. “Kos”

    Seems anti-capitalist to me. I think they will be disappointed. Although on social issues like same-sex marriage they will see some movement to the Left.

  60. Eyewitnesses cited by Spiegel-Online say that the rioters who destroyed the exhibit were adolescents around thirteen years old.

    This seems important somehow. Kids don’t come up with this shit on their own.

  61. Well, Geezer, as long as you only look at doobies, abortions and gay sex then libertarian he is!!

    Economic policy? Taxation? Limited government? Not so much…

  62. From those definitions we’d have a problem, since the Nazis were neither capitalists, nor democratically minded, nor socialist, nor monarchists.

    They were socialists. National Socialists. They promoted socialist policies. They were internationally admired for their socialism.

    They were not purely driven by nationalism; the anti-capitalist/anti-libertarian streak was just as wide. The Prussian nationalists were, at most, uneasy allies with the Nazis, and were the source of the “Generals’ Plot” to assassinate Hitler.

    Hitler and Stalin were close allies for quite a long time, until Hitler mis-judged that he was sufficiently powerful to take Stalin out. The German tanks that rolled into Russia were filled with fuel that came from Soviet oilfields; there were trains crossing the border between the two up until the moment of invasion.

    Until that moment, the CPUSA official line was that the US had no business getting involved in European wars. Once Hitler invaded Russia, the CPUSA suddenly discovered its “anti-Fascist” voice and supported US entry into the war. Both policies were at the dictation of the Soviet Union.

  63. “Kids don’t come up with this shit on their own.”

    Someone put the idea of ‘social justice,’ into their little heads, coupled with a bit of Derrida-esque “history is all subjective and burgeois” such and BAM! it must be the Jews.

  64. “anti-capitalist/anti-libertarian ”
    Not the same thing. “Anti-libertarian” for sure. Anti-capitalist? Only when convenient.

  65. Dave G. you’re quite a bit off. Hostility to the internationalist aspects of Soviet communism hardly makes Nazism its opposite. They were competing for the same political space. And trying to transport European categories into a discussion rooted in an American context is a little silly.

  66. “The Prussian nationalists were, at most, uneasy allies with the Nazis” Sure. Let’s call them the moderate sensible Right of their day.

    “Hitler and Stalin were close allies for quite a long time’ Hardly. They were waiting for he first chance they had to double-cross the other.

  67. “Hostility to the internationalist aspects of Soviet communism hardly makes Nazism its opposite. ”

    I agree, I would not call them opposites. They were both totalitarian, after all.

    “And trying to transport European categories into a discussion rooted in an American context is a little silly.”

    I’m inclined to agree again. So why are we trying to tag a modern American politician like Obama, with mid-century European labels like “Nazi”?

  68. Not the same thing. “Anti-libertarian” for sure. Anti-capitalist? Only when convenient.

    Noooo… they were quite vocal about their disdain for capitalism. Quite consistent about it, too.

    I don’t have it at hand, but there’s a long list of the economic reforms the Nazis instituted that make it quite clear they had something against free markets.

  69. “I’m inclined to agree again. So why are we trying to tag a modern American politician like Obama, with mid-century European labels like “Nazi”?”

    Well, one reason may be an antibody response to eight years of deranged moonbats equating Bush with Hitler. Another, more likely reason is that the totalitarian impulse manifests itself differently in every culture and we see the itch on the left even if Nazis are a lousy example of how vigorously they’ll attempt to scratch it.

  70. “Hitler and Stalin were close allies for quite a long time’ Hardly. They were waiting for he first chance they had to double-cross the other.

    They agreed to split eastern Europe amicably. They traded back and forth to the point they were each others’ largest trading partners. The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was a mutual non-aggression pact, and the trade between the two allowed the Germans to ignore the British blockade.

    They certainly had more interests in common than not; their disagreements were mostly over who got to run things, not in the way the world should be organized.

  71. “They were ’socialist’ in name only to trick some of the Left into supporting them early on.”

    “The Nazis did not, as their foreign admirers contend, enforce price control within a market economy. With them price control was only one device within the frame of an all-around system of central planning. In the Nazi economy there was no question of private initiative and free enterprise. All production activities were directed by the Reichswirtschaftsministerium. No enterprise was free to deviate in the conduct of its operations from the orders issued by the government. Price control was only a device in the complex of innumerable decrees and orders regulating the minutest details of every business activity and precisely fixing every individual’s tasks on the one hand and his income and standard of living on the other.

    What made it difficult for many people to grasp the very nature of the Nazi economic system was the fact that the Nazis did not expropriate the entrepreneurs and capitalists openly and that they did not adopt the principle of income equality which the Bolshevists espoused in the first years of Soviet rule and discarded only later. Yet the Nazis removed the bourgeois completely from control. Those entrepreneurs who were neither Jewish nor suspect of liberal and pacifist leanings retained their positions in the economic structure. But they were virtually merely salaried civil servants bound to comply unconditionally with the orders of their superiors, the bureaucrats of the Reich and the Nazi party.”

    -Ludwig von Mises

    Try learning some history.

  72. “Well, Geezer, as long as you only look at doobies, abortions and gay sex then libertarian he is!!

    Economic policy? Taxation? Limited government? Not so much…

    O.K. One place I do think we will see a push for greater government involvement in the economy? Green energy. The logic here is to reduce dependence on foreign oil, create green jobs, and take the lead on reducing CO2. Clearly China is a bigger problem there than we are, but the idea is to develop the technology and show others how do do it.

    But “redistribution” style programs? Not so much. Here I suppose we might point to an eventual tax increase at the top of the scale, and $$$s towards subsidized health insurance.

    Other things I expect to see:

    A decrease in spending on new weapons technology, and an increase in basic science funding.

    So, no, he’s not a libertarian, but I’d hardly call it a push for complete government control.

  73. What Mises identified was that private ownership of the means of production existed in name only under the Nazis and that the actual substance of ownership of the means of production resided in the German government. For it was the German government and not the nominal private owners that exercised all of the substantive powers of ownership: it, not the nominal private owners, decided what was to be produced, in what quantity, by what methods, and to whom it was to be distributed, as well as what prices would be charged and what wages would be paid, and what dividends or other income the nominal private owners would be permitted to receive. The position of the alleged private owners, Mises showed, was reduced essentially to that of government pensioners.

    De facto government ownership of the means of production, as Mises termed it, was logically implied by such fundamental collectivist principles embraced by the Nazis as that the common good comes before the private good and the individual exists as a means to the ends of the State. If the individual is a means to the ends of the State, so too, of course, is his property. Just as he is owned by the State, his property is also owned by the State.

    link

  74. “So why are we trying to tag a modern American politician like Obama, with mid-century European labels like “Nazi”?”

    The Obama movement has some ominous parallels with socialist mass movements of the past, both Fascist and Marxist. This includes the direct use of Marxist posters with minimal alteration, as well the same sort of deification of the leader.

    The talk about the Civilian National Security Force which was also mentioned by Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s chief of staff added to that concern.

    I don’t actually care what we call him as long as we keep an eye on him and accept that what has happened before could happen again.

    America is not a special and unique snowflake where bad things cannot happen.

  75. Fascism is a religion of the state. It assumes the organic unity of the body politic and longs for a national leader attuned to the will of the people. It is totalitarian in that if views everything as political and holds that any action by the state is justified to achieve the common good. It takes responsibility for all aspects of life, including our health and well-being, and seeks to impose uniformity of thought and action, whether by force or through regulation and social pressure. Everything, including the economy and religion, must be aligned with its objectives. Any rival identity is part of the “problem” and therefore defined as the enemy.

    -Jonah Goldberg

  76. “Everything in the state, nothing outside the state.”

    -Benito Mussolini

  77. “But “redistribution” style programs? Not so much. ”

    Giving tax credits to people who don’t pay taxes is what then?

  78. “Well, one reason may be an antibody response to eight years of deranged moonbats equating Bush with Hitler. ”

    Ah ha…I sort of suspected that. I didn’t think comparing Bush to Hitler was such a good thing either. He was more like past imperialist American presidents (Jackson, Polk, Wilson). Besides, Hitler was a good deal more competent than Bush.

  79. “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance or conscientious stupidity.”

    -Martin Luther King Jr

  80. “Giving tax credits to people who don’t pay taxes is what then?”

    They do pay payroll taxes (social security), and sales taxes for that matter, they just don’t pay income tax.

  81. We’ve yet to see Dave G make a cogent argument. Thusly, he reverts to Bush bashing. Touche.

  82. “Comment by Dave G. on 11/18 @ 1:42 pm #

    “anti-capitalist/anti-libertarian ”
    Not the same thing. “Anti-libertarian” for sure. Anti-capitalist? Only when convenient.”

    You don’t know much history, do you?

  83. “they just don’t pay income tax.”

    That would be the effing point, now wouldn’t it.

  84. “Everything in the state, nothing outside the state.”

    -Benito Mussolini

    “Which in the context of the time sounds like Right-Hegalian speak to me.

  85. A Doug G. on this thread and a Peter G. on another.

    Is everybody named Goldstein now?

  86. Sorry Dave G.

    Maybe Doug will be along soon.

  87. “I didn’t think comparing Bush to Hitler was such a good thing either. He was more like past imperialist American presidents (Jackson, Polk, Wilson). Besides, Hitler was a good deal more competent than Bush.”

    I take it back.

    You know nothing of history.

  88. “Deification of the leader”.

    Here I think some standard liberal-Christian thought has been misconstrued. For example “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for”. Here I hear something like Jewel’s “Spirit” album. “We all will be Christed when we hear ourselves say ‘We are that to which we pray’”. “We are God’s hands”. Etc…

    “I don’t actually care what we call him as long as we keep an eye on him”

    Sounds like a plan, and I’m sure we all will.

    “America is not a special and unique snowflake where bad things cannot happen.”

    Agreed.

  89. On similiarities with past presidents -

    http://www.davegentile.com/philosophy/Vermont.html

  90. “Which in the context of the time sounds like Right-Hegalian speak to me.”

    Look Davy, we’re (at least I) of the mind that the current progressive platform consisting of nationalized healthcare, expanded gov’t, increasing gov’t regulation and control of industry through carbon caps, Barry O’s stated desire to bankrupt the coal industry, the resurgent infatuation with the idea of the ‘noble savage,’ paganism-cum-Gaia worship is in fact a facsimile of several core fascist, indeed overtly socialists tenants. Your perceptions of the ‘context’ are not quite an adequate argument to disabuse me of these notions.

  91. Dave G @ 88

    Does anyone know what he is talking about? Or how that consists of a refutation of O’s cult of personality? All in all just another troll in the wall.

  92. Maybe we should let the Leftists have their one dimensional political scale which runs from one totalitarian to another and say that classical liberalism is off the map in a higher dimension.

    The Left/Right scale did have some utility until, as I said, that master liar, Stalin, threw his monkey wrench into it in order to shut out the competing socialism of the Fascists.

  93. “They certainly had more interests in common than not; their disagreements were mostly over who got to run things, not in the way the world should be organized.”

    Well, other than the fact that Hitler believed all slavic (including Russin) people should die like the Jews, I suppose they had a lot in common.

  94. “von Mises”
    There are a couple of good paragraphs by von Mises in this thread which I agree with. Yes, the Nazis were totalitarian. The state was everything. This is actually different than the Left of the day, however. The communist Left was clearly idealistic, but the end goal was the good of all people. Rather simplistically they had the idea that they could just take all the stuff, spread it around, and that would be good for everybody. The ideology here has the goal of helping people, even if the means are misguided. For the Nazis however, the State was something like a God. Hegelians did not believe in anything like a traditional God. They saw in forces in the currents of history that they Deified. The Right-Hegelians though that this made the state more important than individuals. So for the Nazis, the point was not government control to try to make things better for individuals, the goal of government control was an ever more powerful German-state-God.

  95. Well, other than the fact that Hitler believed all slavic (including Russin) people should die like the Jews, I suppose they had a lot in common.

    Like their hatred for capitalism and love of central planning.

    Which was the original point.

  96. I will give Obama this: He seems to be more intellectually aware of the reality of trade-offs than most of his comrades on the left. He seems to viscerally understand that raising taxes will hurt the economy. He understands that rising energy costs will do likewise. In his own way he even seems to grasp that issues of race in this country are more complex than is typical for a lefty. All that said, what is most chilling about him is that in spite of these realizations he doesn’t care. The same aspects of him which give clowns like David Brooks a woody actually frighten me more because they make it very difficult to see what really animates him.

  97. “The state of Vermont is perhaps the most libertarian in the union and the least traditional”

    Oh, Dan Collins, is this statement really true? Because if it isn’t then I’m guessing I know whey Dave G thinks Obama is anything close to libertarian (other than the social issues). I have often heard that Vermont was very progressive and that New Hampshire is the libertarian state. I know New Hampshire is condsidered very libertarian and if it was in the south, I’d move there. I could be wrong about Vermont, obviously. Just looking for some clarification.

  98. “Maybe we should let the Leftists have their one dimensional political scale which runs from one totalitarian to another and say that classical liberalism is off the map in a higher dimension”

    Actually I think the libertarians have a useful 2D graph. They put the Left and the left, and the Right at the right, libertarians at the top, and totalitarians at the bottom. This captures the social issues and economic issues. It does not really capture military policy, however, so maybe you need a 3D graph or something….

    Here is my own graph, which has some utility for its purpose. (It does not have totalitarians on it however)

    http://www.davegentile.com/politics/political-wheel.htm

  99. The communist Left was clearly idealistic, but the end goal was the good of all people… So for the Nazis, the point was not government control to try to make things better for individuals, the goal of government control was an ever more powerful German-state-God.

    Wrong, wrong, wrong.

    The Soviets limited who was to be in their paradise-on-earth to the proletariat, the workers. The capitalists, the Kulaks, the former nobles, anyone who resisted — they were wreckers who sabotaged the progress to this glorious future.

    The German Nazis limited who was to be in their paradise-on-earth to the Germanic peoples. The Slavs, the Jews, the Negroes, the capitalists, the former nobles, anyone who resisted — they were wreckers who sabotaged the progress to this glorious future.

    There was no practical difference between them, either in methods or motivations. The Soviets did not have higher motives; their motives were as base as the Nazis’.

    The state was everything. This is actually different than the Left of the day, however.

    Again, absolutely wrong. The Soviets phrased it differently, but it was still the state is everything.

  100. Vermont – is a libertarian, utilitarian blend. I’d say the balance tilts to libertarianism, but you could dispute that. For sure they are anti-traditionalist, however.

    See graph
    http://www.davegentile.com/politics/political-wheel.htm

  101. The Soviets phrased it differently, but it was still the state is everything.”

    I don’t think the Soviet government the people got was anything like what the idealistic revolutionaries had in mind.

  102. I don’t think the Soviet government the people got was anything like what the idealistic revolutionaries had in mind.

    There were very few — if any — “idealistic revolutionaries” involved in the Russian Revolution. Those involved in it were murdered very quickly by Lenin and his gang.

    The Bolsheviks were very much aware what they would have to do in order to mold Russia into their “worker’s paradise”. The number of deaths and a social order little different than slavery didn’t phase them.

  103. #

    Comment by Dave G. on 11/18 @ 2:54 pm #

    The Soviets phrased it differently, but it was still the state is everything.”

    I don’t think the Soviet government the people got was anything like what the idealistic revolutionaries had in mind.

    Do you mean to say that socialists cannot change human nature? What a shocker!

    The revolution is always betrayed because the revolution is a fantasy that doesn’t take actual people into account. It therefore leads to totalitarian methodologies in an attempt to force human nature into a mold it was never suited for.

    Marxism is by its nature and intentions totalitarian in that it attempts to force people to be something they are not.

  104. The state of Vermont is perhaps the most libertarian in the union

    Over half of its residents collect welfare from the state–is this some new collectivist strain of libertarianism?

  105. Abe Froman put that very well I think at #96.

  106. “The communist Left was clearly idealistic, but the end goal was the good of all people… So for the Nazis, the point was not government control to try to make things better for individuals, the goal of government control was an ever more powerful German-state-God.”

    Thinks of this, you ahistoric asshole: the margin of error in estimating the number of people murdered in the name of communism is larger thatn the entire Nazi Holocaust.

    So much for reactionary leftist “idealism”, huh?

  107. I don’t think the Soviet government the people got was anything like what the idealistic revolutionaries had in mind.

    It never is.
    The idealists are nothing more than tools for those who wish more power for themselves. For some reason, they (the idealists) never catch on to the way things work. Blinded by their fantasies, they latch on to a charismatic vessel into whom they can pour their feelings, hopes and wishes. Typically, in the end, they are reduced to serving as not much more than lubrication for the jackboots which follow, or spending the rest of their increasingly meaningless lives in academic backwaters, enthralling juvenile minds with their real and imagined victories.

    People are by nature greedy. Life is a greed based proposition. It’s all about survival and passing on genes. Everything else is gravy.

    That’s why socialistic systems will always fail. The greed percolates to the top and entrenches itself, corrupting the system even before it’s fully formed.

  108. The only revolution that produced anything like was expected was the one NOT predicated on perfecting the world.

  109. Comment by Rob Crawford on 11/18 @ 3:26 pm #

    I like that, Rob.

  110. I think that Ayers would approve…

    I mean, the capitalist pig educational bias simply has to be stopped…

    They didn’t, you know, intend to hurt anybody…After all, they didn’t destroy randomly, their’s bore the precise stamp of a cut diamond. Anarchists intimidate, but activists aim only to educate…

    They probably just recieved an O! style action alert!

  111. I see Dave has decided to use “the Right” as a catch all phrase for all that is bad. As such, the Nazi’s can be easily described as rightwing and the enemies of the Nazi’s as “the Left”. It is a tiresome childish sort of formulation.

  112. I mean perhaps he is unaware of just how close the affiliation between the Nazi’s and the Communists was, and how Hitler would have remained a big supporter if not for his favoring of German socialism over a one world socialist model which caused the Soviets to paint him as pariah.

  113. I forget where I saw this (I am thinking PJO), but somebody wrote that after the German reunification, they changed the sign at Auschwitz from “Never Again” to “Not for a Very Long Time.”

  114. Totalitarian is totalitarian. It does not matter the color of the boot kicking you, or which alphabet is used to spell ‘concentration camp’. It is all the same in result.

    The differences between Stalin and Hitler were much, much less than their similarities, and what their rule actually meant.

  115. What do you call the ‘other’ under your totalitarian system means very little. The result is always the same.

  116. O.K. so let’s talk about Obama and old-school Democrats. I’d say he is less interested in government control than the previous generation of Dems. For example, Hillary wanted single-payer health care. Obama wants health care you can take with you from one job to the next.

    That depends — on this, and  almost every other issue — which Obama you’re talking about. The one who explicitly and enthusiastically advocated for single-payer insurance in 2003, or the one who said at the January 21, 2008 debate,  “…I never said that we should try to go ahead and get single payer.”

    Eh, good luck with those predictions of what Obama will do, based on his past statements.

  117. Someone put the idea of ’social justice,’ into their little heads, coupled with a bit of Derrida-esque “history is all subjective and burgeois” such…

    And a dose of “get up in their faces.”

  118. Why are idiots almost invariably named ‘Dave’?

  119. #113. Maybe it should have been “at least for a little while”.

  120. #119: Maj. John:

    Or perhaps it should just say “Who Knows What Evil Lies In The Hearts of Men.”

    My heart. Your heart. All hearts.

    Another reason for eternal vigilence, and another reason for each human to grow up and take on responsibility, the sternest taskmaster ever.

  121. Actually, the relationship between German nationalists and Soviet Russia goes back further than most people know. Hans von Seekt and his agreement for military cooperation in 1923.

    As for socialism and nationalism having no problems with each other, it is noteworthy that the doctrine of socialism had two early backers in Bismark and Kaiser Wilhelm II.

  122. Comment by HeatherRadish on 11/18 @ 3:02 pm #

    The state of Vermont is perhaps the most libertarian in the union

    Over half of its residents collect welfare from the state–is this some new collectivist strain of libertarianism?

    Dave asks: Source?

    Although, I will agree that statement needs revision. Vermont is better described as anti-traditionalist.

  123. “I see Dave has decided to use “the Right” as a catch all phrase for all that is bad. ”

    Not at all, although I do suspect that some here use “Left” that way. The terms have evolved but it is instructive to consider their original English context.
    The “Right” were the monarchists. This represented the entrenched power of the King, the Church, and the nobility. The “Left” was originally about distributing power. More power for small land owners, for the house of commons, and for the merchant class. It was all about capitalism and more dispersed power. Pure democracy would still be radically Leftist at this time. The American revolutionaries were the radical Leftists of their time.

    In the 1800s France, and its revolutionary ideas of a Republic with no monarch was the far Left. Russia, which retained a total monarchy and no middle class was the far Right. England followed a middle road. As time progressed the Left became more Leftist – power should be in the hands of ALL people, not just property owners. Now we start getting to pure democracy and into communist ideas on the Left. WWI allowed a radical Leftist revolution in Russia, but sudden change didn’t really take. Russia installed a new set of “Monarchs” who simply used the language of the Leftists to keep themselves in power.

    Let’s skip over Germany, since we’ve done that to death.

    So what does “Right” mean today? I’d prefer to use it to refer to ‘traditionalists”, which is closer to its original meaning. I think nationalism is an expression of traditionalism. However, more typically “Right” is used to refer to Reagan conservatives. This also includes a small government component (in addition to traditionalism and nationalism).

    “Left” I would prefer to use for “anti-traditionalist”, you know, like those with a “change” message. However, “Left” is more commonly understood to include a big government component. I think my definition of Left is closer to what we will see from Obama than the other definition of Left. I think he means it when he says “Not big government or small government but good government”. Although as previously noted, I think green energy will be a significant new area of government involvement.

    So, no “Right” is not a term for all things bad, but if we look at its history is was originally about retaining power in the hands of a few, and in the hands of a monarch who *was* the state and God’s chosen. The terms have evolved somewhat, but they still retain some connection to their original context. Today for example America’s Right would concentrate economic power more than America’s Left.

    We can agree that Stalin’s Russia was a nightmare brought about by Left-wing idealists, but we should also keep in mind that Right-wing governments can be anti-liberty, Going back to the 1800s the far Right of Europe was Russia where all you had was a small class of governing nobles, and the serfs, essentially a whole population in slavery. We also can note that there are peaceful, happy socialist states like Sweden. Totalitarianism (or a lack of it) can happen both in Left and Right wing governments.

  124. apparently Vermont managed to exit poll itself into the position of most liberal state.

  125. The terms have evolved but it is instructive to consider their original English context.

    Umm… no.

    “Right” and “Left” originated in the French Revolution.

    Look it up.

  126. “Vermont managed to exit poll itself into the position of most liberal state.”

    The problem here is we’re trying to get at what these terms mean. If they took “liberal” to mean “opposed to whatever it is Bush is” then that would explain it. But, Vermont has not suddenly become a hotbed of desire for big-government. This is still the state with the longest unbroken Republican voting streak of any state in America. This is still the state that never came within 10% of voting for FDR.

  127. “Right” and “Left” originated in the French Revolution.

    My bad. Before that in England there were the terms “liberal” and “conservative”, but “Right and Left” came later, and were affixed to “conservative” and “liberal” positions respectively.

  128. also the state that gave us DNC chair Howard Dean. but whatevs.

  129. “also the state that gave us DNC chair Howard Dean. but whatevs.”

    http://www.davegentile.com/philosophy/Vermont.html

    Yes, I note that towards the bottom of that page. Dean ran essentially an anti-Bush campaign. Much in common with Vermont’s much earlier anti-Jacksonians. The point is that the parties have reversed. The Dems are now the party of the North, and Vermont, but used to be the party of the south and Alabama. The Dems now, and near where Teddy Roosevelt’s Republicans were.

  130. In short my view of old school dems is that they are centered on ‘big government’ ideas. My view is that the new Dems are centered on ‘medium government’ and ‘non-traditionalism’.

  131. Dave G. sounds like he’s lecturing teaching, but reading his comments make me feel dumber.

    That is, I can confidently say I’m less ignorant for having skipped #123 entirely.

    It’s a conundrum.

  132. “Dave G. sounds like he’s lecturing teaching, but reading his comments make me feel dumber.”

    http://www.teach12.com/ttcx/CourseDescLong2.aspx?cid=8470&pc=History%20-%20Modern

    O.K. here is 24 hours of lectures about that period in England when “conservative” and “liberal” originated. I’m sure they do a much better job in 24 hours than I can do in one little post.

    Here is one on Russia:

    http://www.teach12.com/ttcx/CourseDescLong2.aspx?cid=8380&pc=History%20-%20Modern

  133. Sorry Dave, but I think you have that assed backwards. Barack is proposing somewhat north of $2 trillion in new spending with several new departments which include the “greening” group and the “civilian SECURITY force group.” New departments and their trappings do not warrant a description of “medium govt” or even a smaller government than what is there now.

    The call from the certain quarters of the right (including this site) is for a shrinking of the federal government including the elimination of some entire departments – Education, HUD to name a couple of cabinet level departments and to eliminate federal involvement in the Arts and many grant rich environs that it has ensconced itself into. It’s not just the size of the budget, but the size of the workforce that needs to go… back to enumerated powers only delegated in the constitution…

  134. civilian SECURITY force group.”

    I really doubt anything will come of this idea, whatever it is. And as far as trillions in new spending….we all know campaign promises and reality are two different things.

  135. That’s good skippy, but Nazi Germany was still socialist.

    OK, here’s what is going on. Today’s proggs have stretched so far left, like Gumby doing sun dog, they’ve come clear around and touched Hitlers last remaining nut (the right).

    See, we’re all right. Everyone gets a trophy.

  136. Classical libs and conservatives tend to want to eliminate the vagina gazing that has been funded by the government in favor of letting those gazers find a nice patron er, patsy from which to dislodge the funding. Same for many “scientific” studies into whether the mating habits of dust mites causes sneezes or what not. If the art/science/whatnot is worthy, it will find a benefactor. Just not us taxpayers, not anymore…. Let the Tides Foundations or the Annenberg Challenges of the world fund em – if they deem them worthy. Should be interesting to see if they are deemed as worthy then.

    Get rid of all the baggage that is carried out in Washington on our behalf, and we can then begin a discussion on POSSIBLE new ventures, til then… nada. NO NEW GOVT AGENCIES…or subagencies or employees…

    Time for a government diet and the correct prescription is the red pill not the RED pill…

  137. And socialist or not, the Nazis were still uber-Right.

  138. Yeah… the initial government estimates are usually about 35% of the adequate funding needed to sustain the new proposals.

    Why do you assume that all the tax cuts/rejiggers that Obama campaigned on are gonna happen and all the new departments/spending/security groups aren’t? Neither will get done, initially, to the level proscribed, but one will eventually be over proscribed and pork laden and the others may happen, but not to promised levels. Wanna guess which which is which?

  139. The Nazis were not to the right by contemporary American terms.

    But if you want to talk 18th century Briton…

  140. OK, here’s what is going on. Today’s proggs have stretched so far left, like Gumby doing sun dog, they’ve come clear around and touched Hitlers last remaining nut (the right).

    Guilt by association worked soooo well for you guys in the last election.

  141. We’ll see. I think he’ll push for the middle-class tax cut. Now can he get congress to go along? Don’t know.

  142. we all know campaign promises and reality are two different things

    And we all know that any proposed freezes in spending- to say nothing of proposed reductions in same – is always decried as the right denying services to the unfortunate…. resulting in ballooning deficits.

    Cause, my God, having to actually choose between the Steve Madden or the Naughty Monkey shoes for little Imelda Government is soooo…. unfair!!!

  143. “The Nazis were not to the right by contemporary American terms.”

    See, I don’t think economics is a particularly defining feature of the Nazis. National identity, patriotism, and national militaristic ambition were the key features. All those are features of the American Right. But to be clear, I’m not calling the American Right Nazis. The Nazis were nuts and extremists on all those points. But I am saying their most defining features are still extremisms of what we in America today still associate with the “Right”.

  144. Define middle class – people not $$… teachers? firefighters? In New York or Iowa City? Gross or AGI? In $$$

    Just letting the Boosh tax cuts expire in 2010 will result in an increase in this teacher’s family’s taxes of $1800+. But in 2011 it will increase even further due to the loss of even more tax credits.

    Don’t forget a large part of the Boosh tax cuts were direct targeted credits that will expire causing the entire amount that was credited to again be due….no marginalist rates there… nice big chunks of incrementalism of 25-30 percent an increase…

    On a teacher’s family…

  145. National identity, patriotism, and national militaristic ambition were the key features.

    Now I know you aren’t questioning the lefts patriotism, so we’ll just throw those first two out.

    As for militaristic ambition, Republicans don’t have anything on FDR and JFK.

    I think the issue is government control on society, and Republicans are for small government and individual freedom. The very opposite of socialism.

  146. “As for militaristic ambition, Republicans don’t have anything on FDR and JFK.”

    Yes, and at the time the Dems were the party of the South. The Republicans are the party of the South now. The South has always been more militaristically inclined. It has a strong martial tradition, etc.

    See page -

    http://www.davegentile.com/philosophy/Vermont.html

    I would agree that our most militaristic presidents were Democrats from Jackson to Johnson, but that is no longer the case going forward I would assert. The Realists are now The Dems, and the Idealists are now the Republicans. The parties have traded places on almost all features. Consider that prior to 1896 the Dems were the party of limited government and opposed to things like national banks. Much like the modern Republicans…

  147. Dave, I don’t think a flag waving, La Marseillaise singing Frenchman on Bastille Day is gonna agree with your assessment of “national identity, patriotism or national militaristic ambition” as the defining pigeon’s hole for “right”y “extremists” and nested in a groovy cohabitated hole with the Nazis…

    Any attempt to nest ID or patriotism in the Nazi pigeon hole is fraught with silliness. Leftist regimes can and are just as prideful of their countries. I don’t think those societies would take kindly to being equated to our national brand just cause they sing so purdy or march down the avenues in flowery precision waving little flags for the brand…

  148. “National identity”

    538.com identified a significant predictor of Republican voting as people who identify their ancestry as “American” on census forms. We all know the Right is more skeptical than the Left of groups like the UN – Worried about loss of soverenty and all that. That all fits with “national identity”.

  149. “patriotism”

    O.K. scrach patriotism. By itself it ranges anywhere from benign to a positive quality.

    Although just saying the pledge seems to have kicked up a bit of a ruckus in this Vermont town

    http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/article/20081114/NEWS/81114027

    I can’t see that happening in Alabama. So I would argue overt patriotism is more of a Right-thing.

    But again if all it is is flag waving and parades its completely harmless, and has some benefit.

  150. Sure Dave, it’s just that about 50% of the New South is now the old north snowbirded down here on account of the weather, taxes and Home Depot’s corporate digs and all… not to mention the minority populations are now over 40%, but you keep on whistling Dixie whilst you march on down that construct… to 1896.

    You can’t compare the 2000′s south to the 1890′s south or even to the 1960′s south… can’t be done.

    I could go call Prissy in from the kitchen and she could tell you you don’t know nothin bout no idealist republicans… but then that would destroy that lovely pigeon house you have constructed in your mind.

    What is it they say … Neurotics build houses in their minds, psychotics live in them.

  151. But again if all it is is flag waving and parades its completely harmless, and has some benefit.

    It’s just the right’s little fetish with oversized pics of their leader strewn about the walls, gracing plates and coinage, and adoring our bodies that has your panties tied in that right perplexing bow that bothers you, ain’t it?

  152. Germany contains a large number of Muslim immigrants who are quite vocal in their Jew hatred. Does any have any information on the ethnic break downs of the ‘gangs of youths’?

  153. Forcing Moms to have babies against their wills

    They’re not Moms until they have the babies, right dave?

  154. See, I don’t think economics is a particularly defining feature of the Nazis.

    You can think that all you want, you’re still wrong.

  155. #154
    Lost your job again, eh dave.

  156. Oh, look, dickhead dave is emulating thor.

  157. Worried about loss of soverenty and all that. That all fits with “national identity”.

    No Dave, according to wiki “Sovereignty is the exclusive right to control a government, a country, a people, or oneself.” The key word here is oneself. We are a nation that originally granted sovereignty to the people, a lot of us want to preserve that by protecting the Constitution and not allowing foreign, or domestic, powers of which we have no input control our lives.

    That you can somehow twist that into fascism says all I need to know about you, you are either profoundly dishonest or just plain fucking stupid. I suspect the later.

  158. It also needs to be pointed out that the American Revolutionaries were radical leftists only to the degree that they advocated a non-monarchial political order, and this was by no means as radical as the history books make it seem. The republic was, in 1776, and equally venerable, albeit rarer, form of government in Western Europe. In addition to ancient Rome, there were the lessons of Renaissance Italy and Venice, the Swiss cantons, and Holland to draw from. Of these, the Founders chose the oldest — Rome — as their model.

    No, the Founders were actually rather on the reactionary side. They had something that later colonies in the British Empire had to agitate for — Home Rule — and they meant to keep it, exactly as they had enjoyed it. Parliament got in the way of that, so they told Parliament what they could do with their stamps and tea. Break with the monarchy did not occur until the second summer after the war broke out.

    The doctrine of Liberty! which they bled for and wrote into their constitution was not something they licked off the grass: it was the nature of the society they lived in. Minus the slaves, of course.

  159. We are a nation that originally granted sovereignty to the people

    This is a mere nitpick BMoe, so disregard it if you choose, but wouldn’t we rather say “a nation that originally recognized the sovereignty of the people” intending, as it were, the discovery of the same (which we seem to want to think always was the case, though unrecognized and always will be the case, whether recognized or no)?

  160. “You can’t compare the 2000’s south to the 1890’s south or even to the 1960’s south… can’t be done.”

    Alabama – McCain wins white vote by 78%! (88-10)

    Yes, the suburbs of the large southern cities are starting to look like suburbs everywhere, but the white rural south…

    Another example, only a few years ago, Alabama tried to remove an inactive law from the books. Inter-racial marriage was still illegal on the books, but the law meant nothing because of federal civil-rights laws. The vote to remove this law from the books was very close.

    Alabama ties for the highest percentage of people who believe the bible is literally true (75%).

    On this page I identified 3 “moral poles” – Egoism, Utilitarianism, and traditionalism.
    http://www.davegentile.com/philosophy/Vermont.html
    Alabama’s voting pattern still suggests it is strongly guided by the traditionalist pole, which tends to trump the other two where they conflict.

    At it’s most basic – “Good” is defined as good has always been defined within the group. Thus those outside the group, who do not live by those rules are therefore “bad”. This leads to a much stronger sense of nationalism and national identity, and much less willingness to work with other nations. (One does not work with evil, one defeats it). At home conformity to traditional norms trumps liberty where they conflict. (Without SCOTUS it would still be illegal to be gay in Alabama, and one still can not buy sex toys in Texas).

    We

  161. On totalitarianism:

    On this page I identify 3 “moral prongs”
    http://www.davegentile.com/philosophy/Vermont.html

    We have:
    1) Egoism/libertarianism
    2) Utilitarianism/socialism
    3) Traditionalism/nationalism

    We all blend these 3 values together in different ways. Folks that completely ignore one or more are generally branded as extremists of one sort or another. Totalitarianism is the extremism of ignoring the personal liberty prong. This can be accompanied by a move towards either of the other two prongs, or towards both.

    On Obama:

    I think we would agree his policies will tend to favor #1 over #3. That is – things like same sex unions, abortion rights. We should also see a de-emphasis of #3 in more restrained militarism and more diplomatic initiatives.

    However, I will agree that we should expect to see the size of government increase. I think he favors some cuts, but that is not the priority. Expanding in the areas of green energy and health care will be a priority.

    But I do think he is more libertarian-minded than the old-school Dems. As I’ve mentioned, Hillary-care is a mandatory program. Obama wants to make a program that people will choose to join. I think Rahm favors some sort of compulsory service plan. Obama’s site now talks of $$$ for collage is you choose to serve. Those differences are important if you favor personal liberty. So, again, I ma not claiming we have elected a libertarian. Nor have we elected an extremist. Compared to the “center” he probably values #3 more than average, and #2 less than average, but is he is also very aware of the importance of moral-pole #1.

  162. I think he favors some cuts, but that is not the priority.

    Name the cuts he “favors”.

    Now, compare those cuts to the programs he wants to expand.

    Finally, compare those two lists to the essential functions of government.

  163. As I said, I expect government to expand. My best guess as to significant cuts? – New weapons systems.

    “Finally, compare those two lists to the essential functions of government.”

    Singing ‘school house rock’ song to myself in my head – “We the people, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, PROMOTE THE GENERAL WELFARE, and secure the blessing of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution for the United States of America.

    The heath care of the population seems like general welfare to me. Energy policy has security implications and general welfare implications.

    If your point is that he does not look much like a Reagan conservative, I completely agree. But, he is more liberty minded that those who would be the complete polar opposite of Reagan (old-school Dems).

  164. Dave G…

    Reconcile these two statements you have managed to make in the course of a single thread…

    As I said, I expect government to expand.

    My view is that the new Dems are centered on ‘medium government’ and ‘non-traditionalism

    How the hell can the new dems be for expanded government *statement 1* and be a medium government *statement 2*?

  165. “How the hell can the new dems be for expanded government *statement 1* and be a medium government *statement 2*?”

    I guess that depends on what we mean by “big” and “medium”, etc. Suppose we define “medium” as the size of government that the political center prefers. Currently Republicans would then favor “small” government, and old-school ‘welfare for the non-working poor’ dems would be in favor of “big” government.

    So, yes Obama wants some expansion from the current state of affairs (at least on health and energy), but I think the political center wants that as well at the moment.

  166. DaveG. You have asserted that the South is more “militaristic” than the northeast, particularly Vermont (and I looked over the page you link about Vermont, where you provide links to support your positions, except where you try to make this comparison). How does the fact that the state of Vermont maintains an infantry brigade and a fighter wing as part of its National Guard figure into your calculations. It is by far the smallest state to have its own separate brigade (Alabama, for instance, doesn’t have one despite the fact that it is much more populous and actually has the facilities to do gunnery within the state, Vermont doesn’t). Might it be that the South is more “militaristic” because a Democrat President and administration built more factilities in the south than in the north during WWII (or simply refurbished those built by another Dem in WWI, also overwhelmingly in the south) so that southerners can join the service and be close to home? You seem to attribute a good bit of this to culture, but I dare say you greatly oversimplify.

  167. Pingback: Steynian 286 « Free Canuckistan!

  168. This is a mere nitpick BMoe, so disregard it if you choose, but wouldn’t we rather say “a nation that originally recognized the sovereignty of the people”

    Not a nitpick at all, it was early and I was being sloppy. You are correct, the Constitution is the people granting rights to the government, and not vice versa.

  169. The heath care of the population seems like general welfare to me.

    Well it doesn’t to me, so what shall we do? How about we try to determine what it meant to the folks that actually wrote the words? And since it obviously didn’t mean that to them, why don’t you be honest about it?

  170. I guess that depends on what we mean by “big” and “medium”, etc. Suppose we define “medium” as the size of government that the political center prefers.

    There you go again, Dave. How about we let the Constitution define the size of our government, and you and your little friends put your tin stars and buckets and shovels back in your toy box.

  171. “How about we let the Constitution define the size of our government”. After the income tax amendment it seems the government can be as big as we want it to be.

  172. The Preamble to the Constitution does not grant powers to the US Government, Dave G. The various Articles do that.

    Try another excuse.

  173. After the income tax amendment it seems the government can be as big as we want it to be.

    Even though this makes absolutely no sense, I am going to try to turn it into a positive and say this is why we need the Fair Tax and then leave with what brain cells I have left.

  174. “How about we let the Constitution define the size of our government”. After the income tax amendment it seems the government can be as big as we want it to be.

    That is just a frightening thought.

  175. Obama wants to make a program that people will choose to join.

    Obama wants to make a program people will choose to join because ther is no other alternative.

    fixed it for you.

  176. But, by “we” you know that doesn’t refer to “us” but to “them” in government already, right?

  177. “Even though this makes absolutely no sense, I am going to try to turn it into a positive and say this is why we need the Fair Tax and then leave with what brain cells I have left.”

    I mean let’s think about it for a minute. If the federal government taxes people to pay for a public health program which you have an option of joining, what liberties are the people giving up to the government? On the tax side, you give up some liberty of what to do with your money. But on the spend side there is no loss of liberty if the government is offering to give you something. Thus, the government needs authorization to tax, since this is where there is loss of liberty. This authorization has to come from the people. That’s exactly what the income tax amendment did.

    That’s one problem with “originalism” – it does not take into account that every time we add an amendment we have a new constitution, since the new amendment interacts with what is already there. This is particularly true of the post-civil-war amendments, for example.

  178. I’ve been trying to respond to this comment:

    “You seem to attribute a good bit of this to culture, but I dare say you greatly oversimplify.”

    But something blocked my post. Thus, I’ll try a different one.

    Yes. Oversimplification comes with the territory when you are looking at big picture trends. Some details do get lost. But, no I don’t think Southern militarism is just due to where military bases were built.

    Here I gave an example of Southern martial culture and provided some links. I’ll try that separately.

    I think it was the destiny of the South to be more conservative, given the patterns of settlement and industry. In the South you had basically an aristocracy, and the equivalent of serfs. In this way it looked a lot like Russia, Europe’s most conservative state. Neither had much of a middle class and both were very rural. New England was a much more urban, and had an economy much more based on trade, much more like England and the Low countries back in Europe, and thus was destined to look more like them politically. Thus I would contend that these early colonial settlement patterns are still visible in our modern political maps.

    Yes, this oversimplifies things. But on the other hand, geography and demographic really are very predictive of voting patterns. If we look back at the map of 1986, it looks very much like 2000/2004 with reversed colors. Next look ahead – in 1900 and beyond The Northern party makes big gains out West, just as the Northern party did in 2008. The point is – you could have predicted the Dems were due to make big gains out West just by looking at the historical cycle.

  179. The problem seems to be with posting the links. I’ll try them seperately. Here is the example I gave:

    In the civil war for example, many Northern solders were quite a bit worried by stories of the Southern martial tradition. Stories of Southerners gouging eyes, and such, just in personal fist-fights were told.

  180. tinyurl.com, David.

  181. Here is material from the third link:

    Lay Down with Dogs The Story of Hugh Otis Bynum and the Scottsboro First Monday Bombing By Byron Woodfin University of Alabama Press, 1997 231 pp. Cloth, $29.95

    Violence of one sort or another–from eye-gouging and slave-whipping before the Civil War to beating, lynching, and bombing after it–may fairly be called a bloodsport in the South, greatly distinguishing it from the remainder of the nation until at least the end of the Civil Rights era. Extensive and horrific white-on-black violence, of course, was perhaps the signal measure of just how far the (white) South had deviated from national norms of justice and universalism. But the region’s addiction to interpersonal …

  182. David-your first link doesn’t deal with the profession of arms at all. Yes, it talks about an “honor culture” in the south, and yes honor is a big part of military culture, but they aren’t the same thing. And the other link you post is weak tea as well, the author “reconstructed” the nature of those brawls from “oral traditions and traveller’s accounts”.

    Come on.

    You haven’t addressed the specific point I raised about Vermont’s (fairly large) National Guard. I visited some Army buddies there several years ago and one of them bragged about Vermont having the second largest National Guard in the country as measured against the population of the state (after Alaska). What, one of the colleges there (Norwich) is one of only a handful in the country to have a corps of cadets-sounds “militaristic” to me.

  183. Maybe we are looking at different things here, because having a large national guard is not very closely connected to the point I’m making. And, as I’ll get to below, I’m sure many in Vermont share a belief that liberty needs defense. The links were to show the “honor system” as well as culture more prone to violence, and particularly violence as more than just self-defense. To question someone’s honesty is to question their status as an *authority*. Thus the culture supports violence for the maintenance of authority. Again, more below.

    But, the point is that Southern culture is governed by that moral pole I’ve labeled “traditionalism/nationalism”, which his rather opposite in many respects the culture of Vermont. Some results of this in the South:

    1) Moral authority comes from traditional sources. (Bible, church leaders.)

    2) In-group authorities are seen as sources of truth in general. (Trust in leaders, at least if they are in-group) One can see the parallel to a traditional aristocracy system here, where the nobility guided life, and kings were divinely chosen leaders.

    3) In this system, traditional social norms take precedence where there is a conflict with liberty. Where not enforced by law these traditions are enforced by the honor/shame culture.

    4) When “good” is defined this way as conformity to traditional norms, traditional authorities and in-group leaders, then outsiders automatically become evil or at least deeply suspect. This leads to a greater willingness to use violence against them when they do not behave in the way the in-group wishes. On more individual scale this is manifest in the treatment of minority groups in the South, but it is also manifest in a greater willingness to use the American military to force America’s will on other nations. This has certainly been true of Democratic Presidents before 1968, when the Democrats were clearly the Southern party.

    As far as militarism – the point is “Under what circumstances should the military be used?” As I mentioned, liberty does need defense. I’m sure many in Vermont look favorably on military service, as many do elsewhere. But if we were to do a poll about involvement in Iraq in Vermont and Alabama, we’d get very different results. In Vermont, there would be a much stronger preference for the military to be used only in true defense situation. Things like rounding up peaceful Indians in Georgia (A. Jackson), just because they MIGHT pose a threat tends to really annoy the sensibilities of Vermont-types. In the South maintenance of America’s authority abroad is a more legitimate use of the military than it would be in Vermont. That is – the key militarily question is “How much should the military be used to impose America’s will abroad, and opposed to restricting it to defense of liberty here at home when that is directly threatened. For example – my guess would be that Vermont favored the war in Afghanistan after 9/11. Vermont was not, on the other hand, a fan of Wilson taking us into WWI. We may have had a national interest in which side one, but our liberty here at home was not under direct threat.

  184. Ah, guys, Davey’s just bound-and-determined to maintain the careful mental model he’s constructed. Facts be damned!

  185. Excellent content and style…keep up the good work!

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