Monday, December 01, 2008
Hitler and Conservatism
By Richard E. Noble
Making no appologies and accepting the notion that "Liberal" is to Communism and Socialism as "Conservatism" is to Nazism and Fascism, I took up the assignment of investigating and researching Aldolf Hitler many years ago. I did so because I wanted to know where my counrty was heading - and how I could prepare. I did this casually - I never realized how quickly the transformation would be upon us.
I have read many people accusing the Bush administration of Hitlerism. But how true is this accusation? I think that I have read and studied enough on the subject to write an objective and informed essay on such a comparison.
First, Adolf was an advocate for war. Adolf was pro-war. He was not a reluctant warrior. He was unabashedly in favor of conflict. He not only favored conflict as a method for solving politial problems, but for changing social conditions. To put it very bluntly, from Adolf perspective war was not only good but absolutely necessary. It fulfilled God's demands for the eventual perfection of the species; it built character in the individual; it turned boys into men; it promoted national unity and patriotism; it expanded the values of courage, honor and country; it gained the respect of the other nations of the world.
Many philosophers, kings, conquerors and rulers before Adolf felt exactly the same way - along with many of America's famous leaders and generals.
I think that the Bush administration here in the United States speaks a slightly softer rhetoric but I would have to say that philosophically they are in agreement. They believe in war and conflict as a means of resolving "problems." I think this is a bi-partizan policy. I think that both parties believe in war or aggression as a political tool. They disagree only on the technicalities - who, where and how - not whether we should or whether we shouldn't. And Like Adolf no one is concerned with whether it is ethically right or morally wrong. Politicians are already telling us that this will not be our last war either. No more are we fighting the war to end all wars. We are fighting this one as a learning experience and training ground for the next one.
I would say that Adolf was more of a purest in regard to war than president Bush. He approved of war and violence first in an idealistic way. He believed that he could bring "peace" through war. Once he controlled the world - he could then insure peace to the citizens of the world - as the Romans had done. He accused Woodrow Wilson of espousing the very same doctrine. Woodrow was going to make the world safe for Democracy - if you will remember. I have read other people who have quoted Ronald Reagan as saying the very same thing - peace through war.
I feel that Adolf liked war in and of itself. He felt that it was morally, philosophically, and ethically righteous - the fact that it could be economically beneficial and stimulating to the industrial development and general prosperity of the nation was important to his cohorts but secondary to him.
I think that the Bush administration has those same priorities but in reverse. But whatever, the behavior turns out the same.
Secondly, Adolf believed in militarism. He wanted to turn his nation into an armed camp. His idea for his State was rather Platonic - a la Plato's Republic. The soldier would be held first and in the highest esteem. Everybody in the nation would eventually be a soldier in one shape or another. Pure Arian women would breed children for the Fatherland - children would be "little soldiers." Adolf established military youth groups - our Boy Scouts was an offshoot of this notion. Adolf believed in a militarized State or nation. I would have to say that in the heart of every Conservative exists a similar notion. The idea of a draft or some sort of mandatory service to the State has not been mentioned too often recently. The "draft" has a rather turbulent history here in the United States and already those who oppose the idea are organizing. But if the conservative notion that all that is needed in Iraq is more troops and victory is at hand - I think that it could very easily be re-instated especially in a Republican dominated legislature.
But all through our nation the police state has been growing. We have a whole Central American country housed in our prisons today. No country in the world today has more people in their prisons than we do here in the land of the free. And the emphasis on rehabilitation and humane treatment is getting less and less. Americans want to punish criminals. We have prisons now in the United States that are housing prisoners in tents, providing inadequate health and dietary needs, promoting violence and indecency. The American people are agreeing to this on the grounds that a prisoner should not have better living and social conditions than the lowest of the law-abiding. So as the social conditions of the law-abiding drop due to unemployment and poor economic policy the conditions inside our prisons get worse and worse. One day soon we may be providing the setting for the re-make of the movie "The Midnight Express" or "The Gulag Archipelago."
Americans now believe that there are certain criminal types that are incorrigible and incurable and do not deserve a second chance. People who have drinking and drug problems and end up killing someone are held in the same regard as employees of Murder Inc. or thought of as similar to a perverted serial killer. Many people are serving life sentences in our prisons for multiple petty theft crimes - three strikes and you're out. In fact 80% of those in our prisons are there because of drug related crimes.
Adolf Hitler felt exactly the same but he carried his conservatives a step further. He felt that supporting incorrigible, anti-social individuals with taxpayer’s dollars was a waste of decent people's money. Eventually he turned his prisons into work camps and finally added incinerators to expedite the disposal and eradication of these type people. As time went on he expanded on the types to be considered incorrigible. Eventually the disposable included gypsies (homeless?), mentally ill, homosexual, radical, communist, various religious types, union organizers, prostitutes, the retarded, non-producers of all sorts - and of course you all know about the Jews.
Prisons under conservative regimes have been known to foster a tendency for people to "disappear." You will remember not too long ago in Argentina, mothers were holding pictures of their sons and daughters who "disappeared." Militarism and disappearing seem to go hand in hand.
We have recently been exposed to people "disappearing" here in the U.S - people who were citizens; people who had businesses or jobs; people who were professionals.
Our current administration has just admitted to hiding people in foreign countries - of course these people were deemed to be international terrorists. But nevertheless the comparison to Hitlerism can not be avoided. Granted Hitler was a bad guy and our leaders are good guys. But when the behavior for the bad guys and the good guys is the same, how do us simple children know good from evil? Obviously we must make our white hats whiter and our black hats blacker.
In the future we will justifiably increase our police, our intelligence, and our "homeland" security guards all over America. I, like you, agree with all of this - but really do we have to call it "homeland" security. "Homeland" and "Fatherland" are just too heil Hitler-ish for me.
The Jews are building a wall along their northern border and we are building one along our southern border and the last report on Baghdad a wall is being planned there also. You know it didn't seem all that long ago that at least once a week I was seeing an old flim clip of Ronald Reagan saying; "Mr. Gorbachev, take down this wall." I haven't seen that clip for awhile lately. I don't mean to sound paranoid but is something happening here?
Militarism ... inordinate adulation for soldiers, huge military industrial complex expenditures; maximum moneys for bombs and bullets and minimal allocation for health and education. Extreme patriotism ...
In Nazi Germany, German soldiers would gather around a table of citizens in a restaurant; they would then start in singing the German national anthem. If the people at the table didn't join in they would interrupt their song long enough to pounce on the diners and beat the hell out of them.
I saw an American on the TV the other day. He was traveling around the country painting American flags on the roofs of buildings. He said that he didn't think that any country could have too much patriotism.
During the Nazi period in Germany the German people were willing to kill anybody and everybody in the name of the Fatherland. This may seem bold of me, but I think that is a little too much patriotism.
Osama bin Laden may not have a Country so I guess that we can not call what his followers feel patriotism. He claims to be fighting for the "Arab Nation" - wherever that is. But whatever it is that you would like to call this type of loyalty or devotion that gives people permission to kill and destroy anybody and everybody - I think that it is a little bit too much of something. You can call it whatever you like. It is really difficult to distinguish between the philosophy of Osama bin Laden and the philosophy of necessary "collateral damage." In fact, if I am not mistaken, these fundamentalists Arab terrorists use this Western tradition established so vividly at Dunkirk and Hiroshima as a basis for their reasoning. Adolf Hitler believed in all out war. Unfortunately all out war can go both ways. Today the Conservatives are debating the necessities of the Geneva Conventions - even torture - this point of view is fundamental Hitlerism
Militarism ... I read any number of comparisons on this idea but the last one was the most dramatic, I thought. The author stated that the United States spends more on it military budget than all the rest of the world combined.
I don't want to sound like Andy Rooney here, but I think that's too much. Couldn't we at least cut back to half as much as the rest of the world combined? Yes we may have to invade fewer countries because we don't have the means - but let's share this responsibility with some of the other free and conscientious countries of the world.
I would also say if we are not a militaristic state - we are certainly spending enough to be one.
Third ... torture? Adolf believed in torture, but torture has been a fundamental of the established conservative order for as far back into history as you want to go.
After World War II Allen Dulles and cohorts incorporated Reinhard Gehlen and a host of other german nazi war criminals into our intelligence network and eventually into our CIA. Today's conservatives believe in torture - as conservatives always have.
Reinhard Gehlen probably retired at the expense of American taxpayers. He lived a long and happy life as a part of U.S. intelligence - most likely training our boys and girls in the CIA to torture and interrogate Nazi-style. To incorporate these types into our intelligence system was a conservative program - torture and American conservatism are nothing new. You can read the memoirs of General Reinhard Gehlen in a book entitled "The Service" published by the World Publishing Company in 1972.
Of course we all know that Adolf had no problem with torturing people. I can honestly say that I would never have thought that I would see the day that a president of the United States of America would be making the case for this country's right to torture people - any people - on national TV. I may be naive but I thought that we were above such behavior. The Japs and the Kruts did that type shit - not America. But, argues Alan Dersherwitz - a man who claims to be a JEW of all peoples - torture in the name of saving lives is justifiable. This man is a famous "liberal" lawyer. I must say Alan, a Clarence Darrow you are not. A Francis Bacon you very well may be but a Clarence Darrow you certainly are not.
When we declare torture as legitimate practice for U.S. interrogators does not the conservative and the liberal sympathizer have to look into his Mein Kampf and take a deep breath? Please ... give me a break!
Hitler actually gave lectures to his troops the goal of which was to immunize his soldiers to the necessity for brutality. Killing and brutalizing the enemy was good and necessary, Hitler explained. Jews for example were not to be considered as human beings. They were to be classified as parasites and vermin. They were plague carriers. Therefore no German soldier should feel any guilt in torturing or brutalizing any Jew - women, children and babies included.
As time went on this immunization was carried over to consider all enemies - internal and external. These people were all needless and unnecessary - consequently expendable. Adolf went so far as to tell his soldiers that they were doing the work of the Creator whose goal it was to eventually breed the perfect human species. So eliminating the imperfect was doing God's work on earth.
This is not too far off from the present conservative Evagelical notion that to bring on World War III and therefore precipitate the return of Jesus Christ and the destruction of all sinners is a good thing and a part of God's plan. In effect, right wing Christian Evangelicalism is certainly the stepbrother to Nazism. And I seriously doubt if Jesus Christ would have anything to do with any of this business.
Unfortunately this did not work. It seems that many German soldiers were having mental breakdowns from being forced to kill or machine-gun too many innocent or unarmed people. Adolf then went into training super loyal, super patriot killer squads. These soldiers followed the invasion forces and then dealt with the mass exterminations after an area was occupied.
This was followed by new scientific techniques to more efficiently exterminate people with a minimal of German soldiers participating.
Hitler believed in "all out" war. The only rule of war was winning. If you win the war, you will write the history books and you will tell the world what happened. If you lose then clearly you were not God's chosen elect. If you lose then you were wrong. If you win then whatever you chose to do will be justified. The goal of a nation at war is then to concentrate solely on winning - no talk or actions to the contrary should be tolerated.
Hitler was even annoyed that the German press printed love letters from home from the wives and sweethearts of the men on the front lines during World War I. He accused them of a kind of treason through ignorance.
So we have Hitler and our conservative agenda ... 1) War is good; 2) Militarism and the expansion of the military are the policy; a) expand domestic security - police etc.; make prisons harsher; 3) torture is good. a) immunize the soldiers and the general public to cruelty, killing and the nobility of dying in battle for their Fatherland and later for the Fuehrer.
The Burning of the Reistag and 9-11.
The Reistag burnt down mysteriously. The Reistag was the Capital Building, the seat of the German Government. This horrified the German people. It was like the Pentagon had been bombed - can you imagine! A great symbol of the German society had been destroyed by some crazy "terrorists." This convinced the German people that their tolerance and understanding of radical groups had gotten out of hand. An internal crackdown was necessary. This led to the accepted establishment of a German police state and purges of Adolf personal and political enemies.
As it turned out Hitler himself may have authorized the burning of the Reistag for the very purpose that he had planned. Now he would have the support of the "masses" to eliminate all opposition; to arrest anyone he wanted; to remove restrictions on the police and enhance state control of the nation. And that is exactly what he did. Who would believe that anyone could be this cleaver or nefarious? But history is full of such examples - Nero, Caligula, to mention just a couple.
So far only a few extremists have accused the Bush administration of being complicit in the destruction of the Twin Towers but a recent poll indicated that 32% of Americans believe that the U.S. Government was somehow involved in the catastrophe of the Twin Towers for the sake of precipitating a war.
Could it be possible? Well, there is certainly more circumstantial evidence in associating the Bush family and the Conservative movement and the Republican Party with Arab Terrorist than there ever was in associating Franklin D. Roosevelt with Japan or the Axis powers. Yet at least four investigations were held investigating the Roosevelt administration during World War II. There were additional investigations after the war and accusations are still being made today by authors, writers and journalists.
I hesitate to even venture an opinion on such an inflammatory accusation but that the 9-11 event is being used to instill fear in the general public for the purpose of increasing state and police power is obvious. Not only is the state and police power being advanced but "rights" long regarded as unalienable by the American people are being abandoned - wiretapping, spying, unauthorized search and seizures, torture, the right to a fair trial and to be confronted by your accusers; the sanctity of one's home; to be informed of the charges and the evidence against you; denial of rights guaranteed under the Constitution.
The abandonment of the Bill of Rights as something only tolerable during times of peace is being proffered by the administration directly to the American people - and they are accepting it. This may be the most blatant attack on the fundamental principles on which this government was founded than ever before in the history of this nation.
Preemptive striking of an enemy.
Of course Adolf Hitler was a proponent of preemptive striking. He believed in out right aggression and defended this notion of the survival of the fittest in his book Mein Kampf. But even he was not as bold as the Bush administration.
Adolf provided the world excuses for his initial aggressions. He made up stories of German citizens being harassed or of territories really belonging to the German people in the first place. In one incident he actually took German prison inmates to a desired invasion site; dressed them in German military uniforms and then executed them and left their bodies at the site. He then put their pictures in the paper and told his people and the world of the terrible atrocity that had been perpetrated against the "Homeland" and the German people.
This administration simply announced their right to strike preemptively - and then did it. Even Adolf Hitler didn't have that kind of balls - at least until Poland anyway.
The American people were then told by several TV apologists that the U.S. had always had a preemptive strike policy and what the present administration had done was nothing new or unusual.
Preemptive striking prior to the present administration referred to our response to a possible nuclear attack. In other words if the U.S. detected that there were nuclear missiles on their way to our shore - we would launch a response before these missiles even landed. This would be termed preemptive because we would technically not have been attacked ... yet.
It did not mean that we could strike out at another nation because we were suspicious that they were planning an attack against us or because we thought that they would attack us if they had the capacity - and certainly not because of the opinion that the world would be a better place without "their kind."
In the cold war with Russia we had a policy of mutual destruction - not a preemptive strike. What were we supposed to do; "Wait until we see a mushroom cloud?" Ahh ... kind of. Yeah, that was the plan - wait until we saw the rockets coming anyway. In today's world we would say that would be too late - we should attack Russia immediately. We didn't do that and no one said it - at least not publicly.
An act of this nature (preemptive) has always been considered an act of aggression. It was in accordance with this notion of aggression - the one who strikes first is the aggressor - that we convicted the Nazi leadership at Nuremberg after World War II. In fact, it was at these Nuremberg trials that it was decided for the first time in all human history that he who strikes first would be considered the aggressor and that such an act of aggression would be a violation of international law.
It was the United States of America that paid for and orchestrated these trials at Nuremberg - supposedly to define for the world once and for all who is the guilty party in a war.
We and our allies executed many of the remaining German elite on the charge of initiating a war of aggression. It was decided by studying documents that the German leadership had planned, orchestrated and initiated a war of aggression and they were found guilty and executed.
When the Bush leadership says that they preemptively attacked another country and they were wrong and had acted on inadequate information, I find it very difficult to believe that the American judges at Nuremberg would have accepted any such excuse from Herman Georing or any of the other defendants back in 1946. But, we have always believed that a man is innocent until proven guilty in this country - but I don't know if that still counts in this 9-11 "new world." But are there grounds for prosecuting the present administration for starting a war of aggression under international law?
I would say if the present American leadership is ever brought to trial on this regard - things do look bad for the "good" guys. They certainly cannot deny that they initiated the attack. It has been plainly recorded in all the newspapers. But they may have one ace in the hole. From the way this war has been conducted it may be difficult for the prosecution to prove that this war had been "planned." The Germans were convicted for initiating and "planning" a war of aggression against Poland. Having no plan or a stupid plan may not be an excuse but it is worth a try.
Hitler also believed as a point of leadership that any decision was better than no decision. Even a wrong decision was better than vacillation or making no decision at all, according to Adolf.
I think that when Mr. Rumsfeld said; You go to war with the army that you have, not the army you wish you had - He was agreeing with Adolf's idea of any decision is better than no decision. And when we consider that we have no exit strategy; we don't have adequate forces; we didn't anticipate that the Iraqi people might not look at us as "liberators"; that we didn't anticipate a gorilla war once we got to Baghdad; that we could go it alone if we had to; that we might unite the terrorists; that disgruntled Arabs might then attack Israel; that Russia, China, Iran, Egypt, Lebanon and whoever might work against us if things didn't work quickly; that our boys didn't need armor under there vehicles; that depleted Uranium could kill our soldiers as well as theirs; that maybe our young people would stop joining the military because they can't go to college if their dead; that we don't have the money to sustain a never ending war; that we can't afford to take care of all the injured and damaged who return home; that we would make our oil dependency problem even worse; that violence begets more violence ... you can continue, I'm tired.
On the other hand Adolf was an extreme nationalist. He believed in Germany for Germans. In fact, he believed in the whole world for Germans - eventually. He believed in good wages for German workers; he believed in full employment; he believed in health care and education for all Germans; he sponsored paid vacations and free holiday cruises for business and their employees; he didn't believe in homeless Germans; when Adolf substituted "foreigners" in his factories they didn't replace German workers at lower wages. They were prisoners or "undesirables" who were worked to death in order to make life easier for Germans. Adolf did not believe in birth control. On the contrary - he encouraged German motherhood and it mattered very little if the mother was married or not. If she was German she and her baby were paid and cared for by the state. He encouraged German businesses to work for the betterment of the German state and the German people. He hated "internationalism." He would not be a fan of the "Global Economy" - nor would he participate in any "Free Trade" agreement that undercut the Homeland. If it didn't benefit Germany and the German people, he didn't do it.
Neither of our two political parties would be considered Hitler-like in any of the above.
Adolf as we all know did not like the Jews. He considered the Jews to be an international pariah. Although he criticized the Jews for not having a homeland, he did not care much for the idea of Zionism. He considered a Jewish homeland to be nothing more than a pirate’s hideaway - a place where the Jews could hide their ill gotten gains.
I don't think that either of our political parties could be considered to be against Zionism or the nation State of Israel. Although I have just finished reading a book entitled, the Secret War Against the Jews, which attempts to make that very case. I suppose that the authors of this book might equate the current situation to be a roundabout venture by the U.S. to unite the entire Arab world against the Jews - which would have a certain amount of credibility. As far as I can see though the general opinion is the exact opposite. If anything, it may be that the American people are of the opinion that the U.S. government is too cozy with the state of Israel at the moment.
Adolf had a bitter hatred for the press. He not only censored the press but eventually he took over the press. It does seem that the Nazis invented the word propaganda. I interpret this word "propaganda" to be what is referred to today as "spin." Propaganda would also be the leaking of false information. It could also be the misdirection or falsification of information (intelligence). It could also be the suppression of true information. The controlling of the news, the press, and information in general was a foundation stone of Nazism.
Conservatives have always had this same animosity - especially during a war. The British conservatives went bonkers when William Howard Russell, the first war correspondent, started sending his dispatches from the Crimea in Russia back to the British press. His version of the "Charge of the Light Brigade" was not nearly as romantic, patriotic or heroic as Rudyard Kipling's version. The British people were shocked at the ineptness of their military leadership and other facts of the war. Not only hadn't the British government sent any doctors or nurses, the soldiers didn't even have bandages. The whole war was a sad story of ineptitude and bad planning.
This administration has been criticized as the least accessible and most antagonistic to the press, possibly in all of American history. That is a pretty rugged statement when we consider the Nixon administration. But it does seem to be true. The so called "embedded" press in these present invasions is credited with doing a horrid job of reporting; though they are getting great marks for "propaganda." Even with no pictures of blood or dead bodies, and no returning caskets of American soldiers the conservatives are still complaining that not enough "positive" images of the wars are being reported.
At home we are indulging every type of illegal search and seizure; every type of spying on civilians; confiscations of property, secret arrests; reporters being discharged, staged press conferences, phony questioners and questions, administration officials being fired or being forced to resign, and most recently the president’s appeal to the people to approve of torture as a necessary tool for interrogators.
To say the least the current administrations attitude and tactics towards the press could very easily be considered Hitler or Nazi-like.
Hitler did not put the rights of the individual or of religion ahead of the state. The rights of the State trumped all in Hitlerland. If the State made a law and you felt that this law was against your natural right as a human being or your faith in a Supreme Being - you lose. Order came first in Hitlerland.
In America this view is rapidly on the rise. People are once again challenging anyone's right to take the Fifth Amendment or to refuse a polygraph, or to allow their person or home to be searched, or to testify against themselves, or even the admissibility of a forced confession. I have been reading a good deal of American history in the last few years but I do not find that the American people have ever in the past acted this cowardly in the face of any danger. This may once again be a first for America.
So to re-cap our comparison of Hitler and conservatism: We have War - not merely necessary but good; militarism is the desired state policy; torture is necessary; slanted propaganda is "fair play"; Police state is desirable for security and order; freedom of the press is a ridiculous notion - censorship is mandatory; complete state control is even better; patriotism to the point of elitism and racism is the "way things should be"; 9-11 and the burning of the Reistag - suspicious to say the least; Prisons should be more brutal and fearful - rehabilitation of diseased, sick minds is a waste of taxpayers money; War reporting should be totally of a positive and patriotic nature; any decision is better than no decision
Where Adolf differs from present day conservatives: Adolf favored "nationalism" and opposed "internationalism"; Adolf favored good jobs, good education and good health care for German workers. To Adolf the German people came first - to American conservatives the American people come last. Republicans have now adopted the old Tom Payne liberal adage - We are citizens of the world.
Now let's continue. Adolf as I said hated the international minded. He considered "internationalism" synonymous with treason. In fact he placed it all as a part of the "International Jew Conspiracy.” He more than likely got this notion from that American hero Henry Ford. For those of you who may not be aware, Henry Ford was an avid anti-Semite. He published a book in the 1920s entitled "the International Jew" which he had disseminated all over the world. But consequently Adolf was very strong on German domestic production. He supported the business community one hundred percent. Initially he didn't like the stock market, banking, or capitalism in general - but as time went on he came around. He had to, because as he rose in power it was these very capitalists who were buttering his bread.
Hitler loved entrepreneur-ship and individual wealth and control. He was very much in favor of the "One Great Man" idea. He did have one criticism of Big Business which I read about in William Manchester's "The Arms of Krupp." It seems that Mr. Krupp was not only manufacturing bombs and bullets for the domestic market but was also selling them to Germany's enemies or potential future enemies. Hitler actually considered such a practice treasonous.
Most Conservatives today consider this practice as simply good business or at the least unavoidable. But Hitler in his naiveté thought selling weapons and technology to the enemy to be unpatriotic. He supposedly tried to get Mr. Krupp to stop doing it. He went to talk with Mr. Krupp personally, claims Mr. Manchester. Krupp supposedly told Hitler that he would sell his weapons and technology to anyone he damn well pleased and if Mr. Hitler didn't like it, he (Mr. Krupp) would move his entire armament operation to Soviet Russia. We have almost no - and very possibly none - of our large corporations who are not international - usually receiving more of their profit and revenue from foreign investments.
Supposedly Hitler negotiated a compromise and convinced Mr. Krupp to only sell last year's "models" to the enemy and this year's models to Germany. This seems to be the present day U.S. policy but, of course, most of our defense contractors have already moved the bulk of their operations to foreign countries - labor cost being so much more reasonable. I have also read that this has been done for "strategic" reasons also - we don't want to have all our eggs in one basket, it is claimed.
So though the American people pay dearly for their arms and arm technology - most of the related job employment has been shipped over seas - Americans still get to be the soldiers though. Many Americans think this to be a benefit. I would personally rather have the armament jobs performed in this country by Americans and the soldiering farmed out to foreign countries - but that is just my opinion. I think that making the bullets is much safer and more lucrative than shooting them. But then again I was never much of a one for soldiering.
So Hitler liked and supported the business community much like our present day conservatives. The difference being Hitler supported the "national" defense by employing the workers and industrialists of his nation - not the international, Global economy - at least where he had the power to do so.
Hitler not only believed in "Peace through War"; he also believed in "Wealth through War." Hitler and his associates were salting themselves away a personal fortune. When reading about Hitler and his friends one seriously has to wonder if all their aggressive behavior was not a matter of their personal desire to amass wealth and fortune. This was once the goal of all great conquerors. It is said that even as late a Napoleon the promise to the soldiers was the opportunity for rape, pillage and plunder. Hitler and his friends were certainly in favor of pillage and plunder.
Form what one reads in the newspapers the present administration and friends could very well be of a similar mind set. We have Halliburton, Unical, Zapata oil and a host of "Privatization" war technologists who seem to be doing very well lately. In any case, the days for our presidents ending up bankrupt in their post presidential years seems to have died out with a few of the early forefathers.
U.S. Grant, a good Republican tried his best - but it seems with all his military wit, wisdom and courageousness, he still managed to go bankrupt. It seems that he had a good mind for war but not for business - very un-Republican of him.
Most people do not think of Adolf Hitler and God or religion but Adolf was certainly messianic. He was born a Roman Catholic. He mentions the Creator, the Prince of Peace, Divine Providence, and the Divine Plan in Mein Kampf. Their is no doubt that he felt himself to be fulfilling The Creator's Divine Plan here on earth; he was fulfilling Nature; he was purifying the races; he was "inspired"; he heard "voices" and felt intuitive inspiration. He never claimed to be an atheist or an agnostic. Adolf was a believer and not a non-believer. I remember no reference in Mein Kampf to any particular religion - but Adolf was certainly a believer. He felt himself to be inspired and to be doing the work of the Creator. In this respect he is certainly in line with the present conservative leadership and the conservative movement.
Elitist vs. Populist
This is another one of those confusing areas. As I see it, Adolf preached an elitist philosophy that had a resounding appeal to all class levels of the German population. He was not a "populist" preaching "demagoguery" in any American politically comparative interpretation. He was not a man of, from and by the people. He was not "Mr. Citizen." He was not Harry Truman or William Jennings Bryan or even Huey Long as I see it. He was no Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He was not for the common man. He was without doubt a "trickle down" kind of a guy. He appealed to all the various classes of the German people because the German people for the most part were all elitist who considered themselves to be superior to the rest of the human race - any German of the lowest rank was superior to the best of any other race or society.
In this respect the present administration and the present conservative movement is exactly the same. Certainly George W. Bush and the present conservative movement appeals to the same type and class of individuals as did Adolf Hitler. They think of themselves as superior, hard working, patriotic, pragmatic, unsympathetic, stern, disciplined, self-sufficient, self-made, persevering, members of the elect ruling class and deserving of all they have and everything they may stumble upon in the future. They are the ultimate in individualism. "There, but for the grace of God go I," is not a part of their understanding.
But as with Adolf Hitler they are "plain folk" who consider George W. to be a "regular" guy. The kind of a guy that they would like to sit around and drink beer with; he's the Mr. Malaprop of the presidency; he's the guy-next-door president; the common American supposedly feels one with George W. Clearly today’s American conservative is very much like the "regular guy" in Hitler's Germany.
This is the same type of popularism that Adolf had. It is just that no German citizen thought of himself as a "regular guy." Adolf spoke for the "regular" German. It is just that the "regular" German was elitist at heart. This is very much the same in the conservative movement of today in America. Conservatives today speak elitist, authoritarian, dogmatism in a very common every day manner.
Adolf spoke out of both sides of his mouth when it came to the "working man" and unionism. The first group that he attacked when he got into power was the unions. He shut them down; he wrecked their offices and burnt their files and put their leaders in prison - or killed them on the spot. The present day conservative and the conservative movement have done much the same thing only in a much more sophisticated manner. The last stage of the American anti-labor movement took control immediately after the death of FDR. Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Bushwacked II - I don't think anyone can find any real labor heroes in that group. Even the Labor unions that survived into the second half of the 20th century were not workingman unions. The AFL was elitist. Samuel Gompers stood up more for the business community than he did for the working community. John L. Lewis of the CIO was a Republican - need any more be said. The Teamsters were gangsters and Mafioso. Labor unions in today's United States are either dead or dying. Public support for unions is nil to nothing. Everybody whether they are right or left, young or old have the same single phrase when it comes to unions in this country; "The Unions at one time were good but then they went sour and in today's world they aren't necessary." And I suppose that they won't be necessary until the middleclass is in the dumpsters with the lower class; then we may see some turning around. As more and more Americans loose their good jobs and their retirement promises and their health care and insurance benefits we may then start to see some sort of a gradual return. But the business community has become a lot smarter and they certainly have not lost their ruthlessness - it will be extremely difficult for the union movement to ever rise again. It is going to take some creative imagination and some new ideas by those who are so inclined to help reverse this type of deterioration.
No unions were allowed in Germany after Adolf. Unions were built, controlled and organized by Jews according to Adolf. They were destroyed not because they were unions but because they were a part of the Jewish Conspiracy. Of course everyone that Adolf didn't like was a part of the Jewish Conspiracy.
Another fundamental of Hitlerism was the principle of the consolidation of your enemies.
Adolf as I just finished stating had very little respect for the common man - the masses. He felt that they were basically stupid and could not grasp a complicated enemy. He advised his Kampf that all of their enemies should be consolidated under one title. And all the problems of the society should be accredited to this one simple to understand group. Adolf chose as his symbol for everything evil and troublesome - The Jew. Adolf was truly unique in this regard. He had Jews everywhere. He had the hated rich Jew capitalist up in the window of his successful factory, cheering the Jew labor leader down in the factory yard who was inciting a strike. The Jewish capitalist didn't really care about all the money that he was losing because of the labor strike - because the main goal of the International Jew was to promote chaos and discord. The International Jew's main goal was to collapse and undermine the stability of all nations so that they could eventually rule the world.
The conservatives unfortunately do not have the International Jew these days - instead they have the Liberal. The American Liberal like the Hitler International Jew is all hated things under one simple heading. Liberals are traitors; liberals are cowards; liberals are social deviants who want to undermine the basic principles of the established society. Liberals hate God; they hate women, and liberal women hate men; liberals even hate themselves.
Just as Adolf was able to place every hated thing under the dog-tag of the Jew, so today the conservative has categorized the Liberal. Liberal is a bad word in today's American Society. Even Liberal's won't admit to being Liberal any more.
Amazingly, with the fall of Communism, Liberals have even become today’s fascists. Once upon a time the Liberals were Communist and the Conservatives were Fascists. You would think that when the Communists collapsed the Liberal would have collapsed with it but no; the Conservatives went from fascists to patriots and the Liberal went from Communist to Fascists. There should be absolutely no doubt who inherited Adolf's propaganda gene. But Adolf claimed to learn the techniques of propaganda from the capitalists warmongers; and I must admits the capitalist warmongers still maintain the edge in this field.
It should go without saying that Adolf believed in a "Secret Agenda." The general public had no need to know anything other than what Adolf thought was best for them. This notion is still basic conservative policy.
Adolf was not a fan of Thomas Jefferson in this respect. There was no amendment protecting the public's right to free speech in Nazi Germany.
Conservative's today certainly do not believe that an informed public is the best safeguard for a democratic society. They believe in secrecy - they believe that even the truth is not absolutely necessary, especially when half the truth would be sufficient and more acceptable to the "common people."
Adolf was a conservative and many of today's conservatives have great difficulty in distinguishing their philosophy from that of Adolf. Not too long ago we had David Duke running for something. Many of my Republicans friends and associates thought that he had many good points - although they didn't agree with his "basic racism."
Conservatism was not born of Fascism or Nazism - but Nazism and Fascism were born of conservatism. There is no doubt about that.