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Marion On September - 5 - 2011

Loads of people love to talk about fascism coming to the United States, draped in a flag and carrying a cross. Well, maybe that’s so; but I happen to think that it’ll come the way good, old-fashioned fascism came to Germany. In fact, it’s almost here now.

Last Sunday, the BBC presented a documentary about Hans Litten, a young German lawyer, who single-handedly tried to stop the rise of Adolf Hitler through the courts during the early part of his rise.

The Beeb does great documentaries, better than some of the skewed tripe you’ll see on MSNBC or Fox. And if you listen to the words and descriptions of events and the situation that existed in Germany in the early 30s which enabled the rise of Hitler, you’ll see why. In fact, you’d better watch this near your bathroom, because it will hit you like a ton of bricks and you’ll literally cack yourself.

Poor economy, people driven into the ground, emotionally, psychologically and physically under the burden of war and rising unemployment … then along comes a political movement that’s pure feel-good and aimed at the so-called oppressed middle classes.

First, it inculcates a fear of socialism and communism, which is affiliated with the labour (union) movement; then it stirs up enmity towards intellectualism. Intellectuals, like Hans Litten, the subject of this documentary, always question idealogues. And so begins the demonisation of intellectuals for their perceived “elitism.” If you think that you’re seeing a backlash against intellectual elitism in the United States today, just remember what arose out of the last movement to denigrate higher intellectual education.

And, please, don’t think the Left today is entirely exonerated from blame. As much as the Right, they’ve bought into the Big Lie propaganda tactics espoused by the Tea Party and used these methods as virulently and as onerously against the President, just like the brethren of the Right. Whilst the mouthpieces of the Left pay lip service to intellectualism, and, indeed, many would go as far as to identify themselves as such, they’re not.

Intelligence and an appreciation of culture does not make one an intellectual. It does, however, make you a dilettante. Just ask Arianna Huffington or Hermann Goering.

Watch and learn:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=f675ltpoeCE

54 Responses so far.

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  1. Emerald1943 says:

    Marion, thank you so much for posting this most intriguing look at the rise of Hitler and the story of Hans Litten. Like others here, I had never heard of him before.

    I see so many similarities between what happened in Germany in the 20’s and 30’s and what is happening here now. We have seen renditions like that of Litten. In the name of national security, we have accepted a loss of privacy under the “Patriot Act”. We have been made aware of secret prisons in other countries. We have seen the development of an anti-intellectual attitude. We have seen torture carried out by the State. We have seen the rise of a fringe element into national politics, just like the rise of the Nazis. In fact, the film tells of the time in the 20’s when the people voted them in, elevating them from the fringe to the national stage. How is that any different than what is happening now with the rise of the evangelical and fanatical tea partiers? Our extreme RW is becoming more mainstream every day and there seems to be a tacit approval by many. The media continues to provide that “false equivalency” that we have discussed here in spite of the fact that their numbers are still small. It is an insidious process just as it was in Germany.

    The only difference that I see is that Hitler did not use religion as much as “nationalism” as his main method to arouse the German people. The Germans had been humiliated by their defeat in WW1 and Hitler used this to urge them to rise up against what he saw as unjust punishment after the war, unifying them and pointing the blame at the Jews. Different than religion, but just as effective in convincing the German people that they needed a strong leader to restore the “glory” of the country. A similar meme has been out there now…that President Obama is an apologist, ashamed of the country…perhaps a call by the repubs to a kind of nationalism?

    Of course, Rick Perry is not going to imprison half the population in concentration camps, but if his agenda is that of his friends and donors, he will strip rights from the people before you can blink! Our democracy has been and is under attack from the radical right-wing. How is this any different than what happened during the early days of Nazi Germany? The similarities are eerie!

    • choicelady says:

      Em -- Hitler did enlist a huge part of the Protestant denominations AND much of the Catholic church in his quest. He fell back on the Teutonic myths of a Superman (woman -- not so much) who would purify the world. Today’s equivalent is the Christian -- the chosen, the elect, the one -- who will lead the world from its evil and decadent ways.

      There is always the myth of the superiors in every tyrannical movement. Dominionists just have their own twist on the subject.

      • Emerald1943 says:

        CL, yes, good point! I do know that the Catholic church was complicit in getting Nazis out of Germany at the end of the war. I’m sure there were Protestant groups who did not complain about the persecution of the Jews. Hitler used them to blend German Christianity into his ideology of some kind of mystical religiosity with the German people being the chosen ones. The parallels with today’s RW evangelicals is apparent…and really scary!

        But I do believe Hitler’s most compelling message was one of nationalism to urge Germany to rise from the humiliation of the Treaty of Versailles that had decimated the German spirit. The German people were bitter and disillusioned with poverty and high unemployment. They were ripe for the picking when he came along, promising a thousand-year Reich to glorify the Aryan people, the Super-race.

        As Kalima has pointed out, the people were starving and demoralized after the war. Hitler came in promising everything they wanted to hear.

  2. kesmarn says:

    The Beeb certainly did a remarkable job with that one, Marion, and I’m grateful that you posted it. I’d never heard of Litten before. It’s a good and pertinent thing that the Beeb is making his story known to a wider world.

    In so many places all over the world now, you have to wonder how many innocent people are being held. Sometimes their own families have no idea where they are. They wait — often for many years — for a deliverance that may not ever come. They wait in terror and pain, sometimes.

    What is it that makes humans treat each other this way?

    We always thought that we were a country that held to a higher standard. It took Dubya to show us we could be as bad as some of the worst of them. That we could attack a country unprovoked. Pre-emptively. That we could build a concentration camp. That we could torture.

    To me, that — not the financial collapse — will be the worst legacy left by him.

  3. Marion, thank you so much for posting this. I, in a small sense, study the rise of National Socialism and the history of the loss of democracy in the early 20th century Germany. I haven’t heard of Hans Litten before reading your post. What an incredibly principled man and one who who found the sheer discipline to keep those principles in the face of unimaginable circumstances.

    Fritz Stern, a refugee from Hitler’s Germany and a leading scholar of European history startled several of his listeners when he warned in a speech about the danger posed in this country by the religious right. In his address in November of 2002, just after he received a prize presented to him by the German foreign minister, he told the audience that Hitler saw himself as “the instrument of providence” and fused his “racial dogma with Germanic Christianity.”
    He went on to say “Some people recognized the perils of mixing religion and politics,” but he said of pre-war Germany, “but many more were seduced by it. It was the pseudo-religious transfiguration of politics that largely ensured Hitler’s success, notably in Protestant areas.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fritz_Stern

    • SueInCa says:

      KT
      From reading this about Stern, it seems the term for Socialism has a different meaning now. Hitler’s party was the National Socialist Workers party, however when you look at Socialism today, it is far different. I may be simplistic about the term but I don’t see how Hitler’s rein could be called socialist in any way. Perhaps it was staged that way to draw people in.

      • Sue, I think the NAZIs were socialist in name only and I agree that the use of that word was probably designed to fool the people about what the NAZIs really stood for. In reality, they were totalitarian in nearly every way. A group of thugs who took advantage of a bad situation and used it to gain power.

  4. ADONAI says:

    I know Perry and Bachmann and the Kochs aren’t good people and are the last people we want in high office

    But once people start comparing them to folks who burned people in ovens, you lose me.

    If Arriana Huffington is Hermann Goering then I don’t think we have much to fear from the “Fourth Reich”.

    You know how hard the Nazis worked to be evil? Every time we compare some stupid politician or movement to the Nazis it insults the memory of every person who died by their hand.

    That was evil. That was PURE fucking evil. It wasn’t the homogenized, corporate owned evil we have today. It’s not the same and it never will be. GOD help us the day fascism really does come to this country. Don’t plan to blog about it.

    • escribacat says:

      True. I see the holocaust as possibly the most significant event in human history — with its implications for a possible repeat performance under the right economic conditions. No matter how repulsive the character in the US political arena, nobody even comes close to what the Nazis were doing.

    • bito says:

      AD, mostly agreeing with KT, below, it’s the incremental-ism of their movement. The Nazi’s didn’t start out with “folks who burned people in ovens.” In fact they followed some laws, bent perhaps, but they followed laws when they arrested and tried the Union and Socialist leaders.
      I think many fear the creeping incrementalism to Fascism, corporate control under the guise and combination of “Christianity” and “free markets.”
      I object to the use of Nazism and prefer the terms of Fascism, theocracy/ Dominionism.

      • SueInCa says:

        Bito I seldom use the term Nazi either. I prefer Theocracy or Dominionists.

      • ADONAI says:

        bito, I think I overreacted when I saw illusions made to Nazi Germany. Especially in my exchange with Sue where she made it clear that the cause wasn’t the same but had scary facets of it.

        And indeed you are correct. Many spoke out about Hitler but the incremental escalation was so subtle at times that by the time Nazi colors were flying over Poland many had just accepted it as normal.

        I thought about the phrase, “the cost of freedom is eternal vigilance”. Can’t remember who said that. It’s a good one. Whether anything comes of it or not, attention should be paid to divisive forces in our country. Even if they don’t succeed, every crack weakens the structure.

        • SueInCa says:

          Adonai
          That was what I was trying to get at, you are right. I may not have been real clear, sometimes I have that trouble. I believe the quote you posted is good common sense. The reason the Dominionists scare me more is that they wrap their ideals in a Christian box and people are sometimes weak when it comes to religion, or easily lead astray, or allow themselves to be sucked in, however you want to put it.

    • Adonai, I think you are severely underestimating the seeds of such a drastic change in a democratic society. The NAZIs were nobodys when they began. A small group of fanatics that people did not give much thought to.
      Maybe you are right about Bachman and Perry and their ilk, but people have to realize just how dangerous their insipid rhetoric is. Religion is one of the most powerful manipulatory tools known to man. Maybe the danger, here in a country with a truly unique constitution, such fears are premature. But when does a society nip in the bud another NAZI Germany? Before it’s too late to do anything about it? No, people must know the insidious nature of mixing religion and politics.
      Average Germans loved Hitler in the beginning, before the real atrocities began. They didn’t see him as a maniacal, megalomanic intent on ruling the world and murdering nearly 12 million people.

      • SueInCa says:

        Tea Baggers have already thrown out the book burning idea. They have taken the world and our country hostage during the debt crisis and there were no repercussions. Our debt was downgraded because of their ideas, still no repercussions. They have paraded around the country disrespecting our elected president, no repercussions. They helped the republicans take control of the House, making the GOP beholden unto them. Regarding the 12 people in congress to make decisions for all of us, if they were true to their claims, they would be screaming bloody hell, but they are quiet. Why? Because it fits in with their ideals of a small group ruling the country. I see so many parallels in the events in this film and what is going on here. It is still subtle but when a group takes control, their actions are always subtle for a time. And it always seem the rule of law does not apply to them.

        Bush and Cheney tried out the torture deal and they got away with it. They held prisoners in Guantanamo without cause and they are still there because Republicans refuse to allow them in super max prisons, or to even be tried here if indeed they are criminals/high risk, yet they blame Obama for not closing down Guantanamo. No other country will take them because whether or not they are terrorists, they were branded as such by the Bush adminisration so what is the President to do? Republicans would have you think they had nothing to do with their imprisonmnet. I could go on and on.

      • ADONAI says:

        And I don’t think Perry and Bachmann are gonna murder 12 million people either.

        Repeal Medicare? They’ll try. Attempt genocide? I doubt it.

        And if average Germans loved Hitler you think he would have won at least one election.

        • Kalima says:

          The average German didn’t, they were desperate and had little choice as I’ve explained below. My young grandparents, just married and in the process of adopting my mother, were just two of the millions on the brink of starvation, they told their stories sometimes, but not very often, there was always great sadness involved, I knew when not to pry. Eventually with the scarce food rations, those who openly supported Hitler and his party, got more, that’s how the Nazi party worked too.

          • SueInCa says:

            Kalima
            There were many heroic Germans who put their own lives on the line to save others. I can see why your grandparents would not want to talk about it, it can’t be too much different than PTSD. My grandmother was German and I know she was very quiet about her nationality during the war. I went to the Holocaust Museum in DC. It took my friend and I 3 1/2 hours to get through it all. I learned alot more that day that I did not know. I have always had an interest in reading the stories of Germany at that time. It started when I read The Diary of Anne Frank in 5th grade. To me that is true heroism and bravery. Those people knew what would happen to them if they were caught and they put their lives on the line to help. I think it is proof positive that many people were not in agreement with the governments actions.

          • Kalima, I once worked with an elderly woman from Germany, while I was living in Southern California. She still had admiration for Hitler because he did bring her and her family out of poverty. She still praised him as a leader of the German people. That sounds incredulous, but in a way I can see her point. As long as one overlooks the crimes against humanity and, in the end, the utter destruction of one of the most civilized societies on earth.

            • Bito, again you misunderstand me. Maybe I shouldn’t have used the term “allowed.” I only meant that as a matter of world history, it will not be forgotten, “in the context of history.” Just as I said that our atrocities of slavery and the genocide of Native Americans will never be forgotten. There are good reasons for historical accounts. Hopefully those reasons are that we never allow such things to happen again.
              Some people say that those times were so horrendous and negative that we have nothing of value to learn from it. And some people say we have everything to learn from it. In a very strange sense I think both may be true. We as a species haven’t learned entirely because genocide and ethnic cleansing still happen today. I also think that those millions who did die deserve to be remembered.

              Kalima, I wasn’t trying to “rub anybody’s noses” in anything. I speak merely from a viewpoint of history. A very well documented history. I have no doubt that the German people have been hounded by what happened in those years. I did not mean to pile on to that. Once again, I stated historical fact. And I was, in no way, impuning the character of modern Germany and it’s intense efforts to prevent a reoccurance of those dark days. I do not want to continue this any further. I wrote what I wrote because of the subject matter of this thread.

            • Kalima says:

              KT. Yes I’m sure that most of the people living near or around the camps knew what was going on, but not everyone could have been Oskar Schindler, although there are many who helped the Jews and never got any credit for it. At that time the SS had spies in even the smallest of towns and villages, for all anyone knew, it could have been the butcher, the baker or the candlestick maker, talk against Hitler cost lives and the lives of your families, people were literally afraid to talk out against the regime, those who did openly were visited by the dreaded SS in the dark hours never to be seen again, can we even begin to imagine their fear?

              I’m getting tired of talking about that time for many reasons, not the least of which is my own personal treatment as a small child and later in life when people who should have known better, verbally assaulted me for being German. I make no excuses for the evil in my country at that time, but I’m sorry, I will stick with the belief that there were many more Germans who didn’t know than those who did. I will continue to believe my family, my relatives, their friends and neighbours, they have/had no reason to lie to me, they did nothing wrong, they just lived it. Every country has it’s shame, ours was/is maybe the worst, but I’ve done my apologising over the years, as has my family, and I just want my county left in peace. Germany before the war, was not Germany after the war, and I just wish that people would stop rubbing our faces in the past. I know all about “collective guilt” KT, we were taught “collective guilt” in our schools, and I had it beaten into me as a kid in England, literally. I was brought up to believe that I was somehow to blame, I’m not. You have your own history of oppression as you said below, maybe it’s time to really mend fences and address them as a nation too. My collective guilt is at an end, I’ve payed my dues over and over again in many lifetimes. For me this conversation is at an end, and I’m sorry if that sounds a bit harsh, it’s not meant to be. We as a nation will never forget, but we don’t need the constant reminders either.

            • bito says:

              KT, it was this phase that you used that struck me.

              But because it a big part of world history is precisely why the German people of today will never be allowed to forget.

              Yes I know you have said over and over that you don’t believe it was “all Germans”, but who is not allowing them to never forget?
              Imposing the collective guilt on the Germans today, is what I find uncalled for. The Germans today have more human rights in their constitution, have been at peace for 60+ years been an economic dynamo and have been an economic saviour to the EC. Germans well know their history but to impose guilt?

            • Bito, what collectivism? Once again, I did not say that all the German people knew what was happening. I said, “many, many,” did. Those were the people in the towns close to the camps. To say they didn’t know is just ludicrous. As Kalima said, it really depended on where one lived. And it’s not just History Channel docs that I have seen. It has been many throughout the years. Are they all lying? I don’t think so. I have also said that I was not “bashing,” the German people. History will not go away just because we may find it unpleasant. America also has much to be ashamed of. The only reason I wrote anything about the NAZIs is because that is what the article was about! It was about “those who are ignorant about history.” You have completely misunderstood my comments. I wrote nothing that was not historically accurate.

            • bito says:

              KT, I never meant to insinuate you “made it up”, I was objecting to your use of a singular person as an example.

              Are you saying that because we have so many docs on the “history channel” that the German people will never be able to forget? Do we need more docs on the treatment of Native Americans and slavery and our ‘neocon’ and ‘neolib’ exploits before the Germans are allowed to forget? Germans are not evil, they need not carry blame any more than the Italians and the Serbs.

              Your collectivism of ‘Germans’ is what bothers me.

            • Bito, I am not making this up. This woman still thought Hitler saved the German people. She is the only person I have ever heard praise Hitler, besides the neo-NAZIs and the Aryan Brotherhood here in the states. I have no reason to make this up.

              Kalima, I didn’t say the “whole German population” knew about the atrocities. I said many, many did. And you are correct, it really depended on where you lived. Towns people who lived near the camps knew. How could they not? There wasn’t a whole lot they could do about it, but they knew. The American military knew too, late in the war. They chose not to bomb the camps in favor of more military targets.
              I have seen documentary after documentary about the NAZIs, WWII and the holocaust. What I wrote was true.
              It is truly a shame that good and decent German people will not be allowed to forget about that horrible period in Germany’s history. But because it a big part of world history is precisely why the German people of today will never be allowed to forget. Just like we in America will never be able to forget about slavery or the genocide of Native Americans. It’s history.

            • bito says:

              KT, I had relations from Germany and I never heard any such thing from their mouths. I also grew up in an area where hearing German or Swedish spoken was not unusual and again I never heard that sentiment expressed. Now I cannot speak for every German from the people I knew, and she may have had those feelings, I never heard it.

            • Kalima says:

              You are mistaken if you believe that the whole of the German population knew about the camps, they didn’t. There were rumours, but most people wouldn’t believe that anyone could be so evil.

              We as a people have tried to pay our dues, the problem is, people won’t let us in peace. Again, your assumption that people knew what was going on is wrong and all depended on where they lived. I have no reason to disbelieve my family, their friends and neighbours and every other person I have ever talked to about their lives then in Germnay. They should know, they were there, they lived it.

              I agree that there is no excuse for anyone to be praising Hitler or what he ordered his henchmen to do, I find that beyond my comprehension.

            • There is no might have been with this lady. She told me this herself. There came a point during Hitler’s reign that many, many people knew what was really going on. I understand basic survival. I’ve been homeless and hungry. But to praise Hitler AFTER the facts is a bit much for me to condone. As I said, I am not bashing the German people. Not for allowing him to come to power. I do fault those who continued to praise him, knowing what a monster he really was. Surely you don’t disagree with that.

            • Kalima says:

              There might have been some people who believed that, but it certainly was not a majority sentiment. Beggars can’t be choosers KT. Never having had a world war on your soil, it’s hard to imagine what people are prepared to give up to survive.

        • SueInCa says:

          Adonnai
          He did not need to win an election. He was smart enough to stage the burning of the Reichstag and earned the spot of Chancellor because he supposedly knew who did the evil deed.

          • Yes, the fire was blamed on a young boy who was “reportedly communist.” Of course, this boy had supposedly ignited the fire after someone else had doused the Reichstag with gasoline.

          • ADONAI says:

            Sue, Hitler was already Chancellor when the fire occurred.

            His masterstroke was passing an act that removed term limits from his position and basically made him the leader of Germany.

            He bought off one side and barred the other from even attending the vote. There was little outcry.

            If anyone tried that here there would be Hell to pay.

            • Adonai, I am not making a direct comparison between the NAZIs and the RWs here in America. What I am comparing is the means by which a democracy can be usurped. And there ARE similarities between then and now. Not in every way, but too many in my opinion.
              I am not saying the TP leaders are going to commit genocide or engage in ethnic cleansing like the NAZIs did. I’m not comparing the two in that way. But if those creeps get into real power, this country will be unrecognizable and who knows what kind of hateful acts they will attempt? I’d say we can fairly easily guess.

            • SueInCa says:

              adonai
              i never said the whole counry is in shambles but enough is to make a difference. There are pockets that were not affected but there were plenty more that were. Detroit is a ghost city. Families are living in the woods just outside Orlando, large pockets of Florida are deserted, food banks are stretched to the limit. A republican controlled congress wants to cut off further aid to dependent children families. Just how bad does it have to be to qualify in your mind? In my mind in a country like this no child should ever go to bed hungry. There is no way to jusify that unless we are aspiring to be a third world country. You and I just have to agree to disagree. I don’t see alot of despair around my neighborhood but I know it is out there.

            • ADONAI says:

              Sue, and most people don’t seem to care. You seem to think most of the country is in shambles. It very much isn’t.

              My problem isn’t with dominioinists. It’s with the American people. But maybe the Domis will be enough to wake them up.

            • SueInCa says:

              Adonai
              I cannot believe you are serious about “what happened”. Torture, the patriot act, two wars one of which was an invasion of a sovereign nation, the crash of 2008 with bankers stealing over 16 trillion dollars, people being held with no proof of wrong doing the list goes on and on. I can send you many people who were hurt by the crash. Where do you think all those people foreclosed on went? How amny of us had our values in our homes plummet because of the foreclosure problem? I am sorry but you act like this country has been on a forward trajetory for the past 11 years when there is plenty to prove differently.

            • ADONAI says:

              KT, I want so bad to agree with you cause you speak so much truth. But no one here is Hitler. Or Goebbels or Mengele.

              And if they are they have no army at their disposal. There are no high office appointments. You are ELECTED President. ELECTED Senator and so on.

              We aren’t just a democracy we are THE democracy. And no we shouldn’t allow them. But that is what the voting booth is for.

            • ADONAI says:

              Sue, what has happened? 2 wars most people have no attachment to. An economic crisis most people aren’t affected by.

              We’re talking about the hijacking and complete control of the entire nation.

              I don’t think they’ll protest either. I think they’ll fucking riot.

            • SueInCa says:

              adonai
              Are you sure about that outcry? I just don’t have the same faith as you in Americans rising up in protest, not after all that has happened in the past 11 years.

            • Adonai, my motto is, “better to be safe than sorry.” Why allow those who have no regard for our constitution to gain even an inch? Comparisons to the fall of democracy in NAZI Germany are a warning. A very necessary warning, in any democracy.

        • He came very close to winning by popular vote. The point is, that when a group or “political party” resorts to gaining power by manipulating the people with so-called “divine edicts,” how do you know what they would be capable of? Answer, you don’t. Maybe they would seek to eliminate anybody who doesn’t tow the line of their warped theology. There are plenty of indications of their intolerance right now. They would love to put homosexuals in prison, or worse. A few have stated publicly that this is what they would want. Then consider their thinking on race. Don’t fool yourself about these people. Freedom and independence of thought are not in their interests.

          • AdLib says:

            I also think this is less of a concern in the current environment.

            Had the Dems won in 2010, I would be hugely concerned about 2012. If the Repubs could come in as real outsiders and put all blame on the Dems for all ills, they could have been scary in 2012.

            As it is, they have been greatly harmed by their performance and policies while controlling the House and Rick Perry or Mitt Romney won’t be able to run as the Repubs coming to the rescue.

            At the same time, I agree that these people have one goal, to weaken government and in doing so, usurp the majority’s wealth and power in America.

            They need to have that reality labeled all over them and Americans need to see “Tea Party” and “Republican” as synonyms for “Plutocracy”.

            • SueInCa says:

              Adlib
              They can do a lot of damage in the next year in a half. And they are good at making the president appear weak. Unless he steps it up like he did in Detroit today, I am not sure he won’t get the blame.

            • I agree. I like to think that even people who are conservative by nature are also smart enough to see the damage to this country that has and would result by more power given to these fanatics that now haunt our Congress. I know that not all conservatives are ignorant and superstitious. What worries me is the constant barrage of misinformation by RW media.
              It has been said that without the invention of public address systems and radio, Hitler may never have succeeded.

            • Oh, without question Kalima. A lot also had to do with the laws imposed upon Germany after the first world war. You emphasize my point about the similar conditions present in America today. Of course the people are going to love the ones who put bread in their baskets. But they didn’t spend a lot of time wondering just where that bread came from and at what cost to non-Germans.
              I am by no means trying to bash the German people. I understand the conditions that existed then. But there is no doubt that Hitler and Goebbels exploited religion to the max in order to get the people on their side. Religion, then race. This is basic history.

          • Kalima says:

            Let’s not forget the economic state of my country at the time KT. Germany was bankrupt, people were literally starving, my grandmother told me of neigbours eating stray dogs, there was no work. It wasn’t all about religion, it was that the people were desperate and needed some hope, any hope, any promises sounded good at that time. There really was no choice for the average person, the rich had the luxury of choosing, the poor just wanted a meal for their families and to work.

            • Kalima says:

              My friend in NC is a 99er, he hasn’t seen any benefits for a long time and is now too sick to work, of course he’s not insured either.

              The similarity of the Hitler regime and the RWers, is for me most prominent in their constant propaganda about illegals. You know, “They are taking your jobs” when in reality it’s just a lie. Say something enough times and people start to believe it, and as we know, the RW voters don’t care much about research and facts, so they stay as they are. My only hope is that everyone eligible to vote, will vote in 2012. I doubt that many RW minds would be changed before that anyway, and as kes’s friend’s reply confirms, they go with their gut feeling, which is actually nonsense speak for “I’ll go with the group-think”. More people need to be registered to vote, it’s the only way to beat them when conversion isn’t an option.

            • SueInCa says:

              Kalima
              I agree with that but I still see the similarities and this country is not necessarily known for their intelligent voting. Most people cannot even tell you what a politician stands for except the bare basics. There is also a lot of voter intimidation tactics going on now. By the 2012 election if the job situation does not improve and the republicans are ablt to destroy more social programs, the 99ers will be going on 4 years without a job. That is far past desperation time. I just have genuine fear that we are sliding down that slippery slope.

            • Kalima says:

              Sue, I can certainly see the similarities, and they won’t give up, that for sure. It’s up to the people to vote them out, but if they revel in their ignorance, who can teach them otherwise?

              It is like a cult whichever way you slice it.

            • SueInCa says:

              Kalima We are on a similar trajectory and the republicans will do all they can to ensure we stay that way.

          • ADONAI says:

            KT, This isn’t 1930’s Germany. No one is gonna usurp anyone or seize power.

            How will they get rid of us in such large numbers? I don’t see logically how they could possibly forge a theocratic state in America.

            They can barely change individual states into what they want and I am to believe they will change the country?

            • As I said, maybe our rather unique and prescient Constitution is enough to prevent such things from happening. And then again, with the right number of judicial advocates appointed by these people, they could indeed usurp the rights of individuals to the point of control that they seek. It’s not completely unfathomable. I am talking about prevention and what was once a reality has no real assurance that it couldn’t happen again. The best possible thing is to be vigilant in order to see that it doesn’t happen again. NAZI Germany wasn’t the only place genocide and ethnic cleansing have taken place. The possibility is always present and we must be always vigilant.
              You say this isn’t 1930s Germany. But some of the very same conditions that existed then, exist now right here in America. When faced with any probability of a reoccurance of a NAZI like government, the best way to act is to prevent the very beginnings of such an abomination.

  5. Mightywoof says:

    What a powerful documentary, Marion -- thanks for posting it!! I so miss the Beeb -- as much as I enjoy CBC they really can’t hold a candle to the best of the Beeb!!

    The parallels to today are just scarily eerie -- especially the attempt by the German RW to co-opt Hitler and electing him Reichs Chancellor (can anyone say Teaparty?). Another excellent post!!


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