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Is there a rising tide of fascism in the U.S.?

Politics-American Fascism Fears

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#1 Spectacles

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 07:46 AM

First, let me be clear. I am not accusing Bush-supporters of being fascists. I am concerned, however, about the climate in this country. And so are others, and not just liberals.

Here's an interesting essay on this topic by Scott McConnell in The American Conservative.

http://www.amconmag....14/article.html


Quote

Nonetheless, there are foreshadowings well worth noting. The last weeks of 2004 saw several explicit warnings from the antiwar Right about the coming of an American fascism. Paul Craig Roberts in these pages wrote of the “brownshirting” of American conservatism—a word that might not have surprised had it come from Michael Moore or Michael Lerner. But from a Hoover Institution senior fellow, former assistant secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration, and one-time Wall Street Journal editor, it was striking.


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But Rockwell (and Roberts and Raimondo) is correct in drawing attention to a mood among some conservatives that is at least latently fascist. Rockwell describes a populist Right website that originally rallied for the impeachment of Bill Clinton as “hate-filled ... advocating nuclear holocaust and mass bloodshed for more than a year now.” One of the biggest right-wing talk-radio hosts regularly calls for the mass destruction of Arab cities. Letters that come to this magazine from the pro-war Right leave no doubt that their writers would welcome the jailing of dissidents. And of course it’s not just us. When USA Today founder Al Neuharth wrote a column suggesting that American troops be brought home sooner rather than later, he was blown away by letters comparing him to Tokyo Rose and demanding that he be tried as a traitor. That mood, Rockwell notes, dwarfs anything that existed during the Cold War. “It celebrates the shedding of blood, and exhibits a maniacal love of the state. The new ideology of the red-state bourgeoisie seems to actually believe that the US is God marching on earth—not just godlike, but really serving as a proxy for God himself.”

"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

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#2 Spectacles

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 07:55 AM

Here's a link to Lew Rockwell's essay, "The Reality of Red-State Fascism" referred to in the above:

http://www.lewrockwe...te-fascism.html

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There are many good reasons to be anti-leftist, but let us revisit what Mises said in 1956 concerning the anti-socialists of his day. He pointed out that many of these people had a purely negative agenda, to crush the leftists and their bohemian ways and their intellectual pretension. He warned that this is not a program for freedom. It was a program of hatred that can only degenerate into statism.

The moral corruption, the licentiousness and the intellectual sterility of a class of lewd would-be authors and artists is the ransom mankind must pay lest the creative pioneers be prevented from accomplishing their work. Freedom must be granted to all, even to base people, lest the few who can use it for the benefit of mankind be hindered. The license which the shabby characters of the quartier Latin enjoyed was one of the conditions that made possible the ascendance of a few great writers, painters and sculptors. The first thing a genius needs is to breathe free air.

He goes on to urge that anti-leftists work to educate themselves about economics, so that they can have a positive agenda to displace their purely negative one. A positive agenda of liberty is the only way we might have been spared the blizzard of government controls that were fastened on this country after Bush used the events of 9-11 to increase central planning, invade Afghanistan and Iraq, and otherwise bring a form of statism to America that makes Clinton look laissez-faire by comparison. The Bush administration has not only faced no resistance from the bourgeoisie. it has received cheers. And they are not only cheering Bush's reelection; they have embraced tyrannical control of society as a means toward accomplishing their anti-leftist ends.

"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#3 GoldenCoal

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 09:53 AM

Isn't facism just an economics thing? When people say facists, they mean German Nazis, who were facists, but facisim (from my understanding) doesn't mean celebrating bloodshed, etc, necessarily. Just like Communism doesn't mean that you need someone like Stalin in control to kill millions.

#4 Spectacles

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 10:01 AM

Well, it's kind of a slippery term, really. But fascism encompasses more than economics. It's an authoritarian political system. Kind of a right-wing version of totalitarianism.

Here's a good explanation from Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism

Edited by Spectacles, 07 February 2005 - 10:05 AM.

"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#5 CJ AEGIS

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 10:56 AM

The aims of these authors seems to be along the lines of calling the Democrats a bunch of communists during the Cold War in order to attempt to erode the popular support for the party that existed then.  It wasn't true then and it isn't true now.  I'm no fan of the neocons on several levels and issues but calling them fascist is a smokescreen that steers the debate away from issues to simple name calling.  We might as well go back to the days of saying JFK is a pawn of the Soviet Union and the Pope at the same time.  Even if the two instituions hated each other.

Facism by the very nature of the system is in of itself the rejection of democracy because of the belief that the majority cannot rule itself.  Not exactly a policy that would be supported by those who want to bring democratic elections to Iraq.  In addition if the neocons were Fascists they could at least manage to stage a somewhat more competent military buildup to fight the “enemies of the state” rather than this game of cuts, the same old, and force restructuring.  

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Spectacles: "The Reality of Red-State Fascism" referred to in the above:
One really has to wonder if he was thinking when he made that title.  Red = Communism  Fascism – opposite of Communism.

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Excerpt from Article: . On the positive side, the public is vigorously and fervently affirming its desire to re-limit and de-centralize government; to increase individual and community liberty; to reduce taxes, mandates, and government intrusion; to return to the cultural and social mores of pre-1960s America, and perhaps much earlier than that.
I don't see how he can use this as a example of supporting fascism.  Reducing, taxes, greater civil liberities, limited and decentarlized government has nothing to do with what facism is.  Facism is state controlled government in another form. The foundation of facism is the conception of the State as the central power.  This covers its character, its duty, and its aim. Facism looks upon the State as an absolute power, in comparison with which all individuals or groups are in relation only parts of the cog, only to be conceived of in their relation to how they can serve the aims of the State.  

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Article #2: and has a special connection to the Creator that permits him to discern the best means to bring it about.
Attempting to draw a direct link between Christianity and Facism is like trying to jump rope, walk the tight rope and sip champagne all at the same time.  Hitler manipulated and used Christianity as much as he manipulated and used socialism by including it in his party's name.  Hitler than went so far to declare Nazism the national religion and banned the bible in churches.  Yet if you want contradiction I seem to recall the SS was banned from believing in good yet their boot buckles read “God is with us”.  If Hitler was aiming for anything religious it was some sort of neopagan religion where rules was naturalistic by the strong and worship was centered on the Germans.  Traditional Judeo-Christianity, Catholicism, or even Fundamentalist Christianity would be a pox upon this view the Nazis had.

I think the way to look at Fascism and religion at least using the model of the Nazis and Hitler was Christianity was another thing to manipulate and play lip service to for the public while underminning it in anyway you could.  Hitler spoke out of both sides of his mouth knowing that if he want after Christianity and Judaism both from the start he would end up loosing.  Say what you might about the modern fundamentalist (however you choose to define it) aspects of the religious right but their goal seems to be reaching their perfect level of what they interpret Christianity to be rather than manipulating it to achieve a nonreligous poltical end.    

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McConnell: those from Christian Zionists may quote Scripture
Whenever someone breaks out the term Christian Zionists I get a little suspicious about their motivations.

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McConnell: And yet the very fact that the f-word can be seriously raised in an American context is evidence enough that we have moved into a new period.
That is about as logical as being able to call us in a new period with the Democrats being communists because people called them that during the Cold War.

To me these two articles are cherry picking and in part contradict each other.  They are trying to bend the ugly policy of fascism into something it isn't and then are looking at a small very vocal segment of the right that shows itself loudly in incidents that the author again cherry picks.

All these two manage to do is draw the matter away from the real issues that should be debated.
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#6 Lover of Purple

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 10:57 AM

Actually fascism is not right-wing at all. It relies on the "state" being the total figurehead and be-all for everyone. Fascism is actually a result of extreme atheism. (No, I didn'tsay atheists are fascists) In a fascish society the State IS the "religion".

#7 Ilphi

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 11:08 AM

Lover of Purple said: said:

It relies on the "state" being the total figurehead and be-all for everyone. Fascism is actually a result of extreme atheism. (No, I didn'tsay atheists are fascists) In a fascish society the State IS the "religion".

Yeah, that's true. This analogy is incorrect as the neocons have made no move to change the nature of the Church. You can argue if they're embracing it or not, but they've certainly made no moves to change it.

We can contrast this with everyone's favourite facist state, Nazi Germany. There Protestant Churches were brought into the "One Reich Church", and were forced to teach Nazi-dominated religion. Ministers who opposed this, such as Martin Niemoller and Paul Schneider, were arrested and put into concentration camps. The Catholic Church was only saved because Hitler signed the Concordat in 1933 with the Pope where Hitler promised to leave them alone provided the Catholics stayed out of politics.
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#8 QueenTiye

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 11:15 AM

There seems to always be someone who will whip up fear and hatred between people with so-called scholarly inquiry into the most offensive of concepts.

We inquire, for instance, if it isn't perhaps possible that blacks are inferior to whites, and then run off a bunch of statistics.   Should we be concerned that muslims are going to turn America into an Islamic state? And here come the scholarly discussions.  And now, is there a rising tide of fascism?  Look out for the conservatives.

There are no end of smears and innuendos we can put on one another in the name of scholarly discourse and genuine concern. I wish, instead, that we wished to actually talk to one another with respect for our differences, and in hopes for reconciliation.

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Edited by Handmaiden07, 07 February 2005 - 11:16 AM.

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#9 MuseZack

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 11:18 AM

The political culture of the United States has gotten seriously ugly in the last several years, and some of the extrajudicial shenanagins in the War on Terror have been quite disturbing, but let's be serious.  John Kerry is still a free man and a member of the US Senate.  Our media may be cowed and pathetic, but that's a longstanding problem and not due to government edict.  Michael Moore is working on his next movie unmolested by the state, and nobody's suspended any elections or burned down the Reichstag.  

I don't like the ugliness and attempted intimidation by some quarters of the right any more than Spectacles does, but unless there's an organized campaign of violence backing it up, I think it's premature and alarmist to label it "fascism."

Now if you want to see something scary and more than a little fascist-like, try reading transcripts of some of the enemy combatant proceedings in Guantanamo.  Like this guy who was picked up on a sweep in Bosnia and here tries to answer a question:

Recorder: While living in Bosnia, the detainee associated with a known Al Qaeda operative.
  
Detainee: Give me his name.

Tribunal President: I do not know.

Detainee: How can I respond to this?

Tribunal President: Did you know of anybody that was a member of al Qaeda?

Detainee: This is something the interrogators told me a long while ago. I asked the interrogators to tell me who this person was. Then I could tell you if I might have known this person, but not if this person is a terrorist. Maybe I knew this person as a friend. Maybe it was a person that worked with me. Maybe it was a person that was on my team. But I do not know if this person is Bosnian, Indian or whatever. If you tell me the name, then I can respond and defend myself against this accusation.

Tribunal President: We are asking you the question and we need you to respond to what is on the unclassified summary.

Edited by MuseZack, 07 February 2005 - 11:31 AM.

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#10 Mr.Calgary

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 11:41 AM

CJ AEGIS, on Feb 7 2005, 08:56 AM, said:

Facism is state controlled government in another form. The foundation of facism is the conception of the State as the central power.  This covers its character, its duty, and its aim. Facism looks upon the State as an absolute power, in comparison with which all individuals or groups are in relation only parts of the cog, only to be conceived of in their relation to how they can serve the aims of the State. 

(snip)

To me these two articles are cherry picking and in part contradict each other.  They are trying to bend the ugly policy of fascism into something it isn't and then are looking at a small very vocal segment of the right that shows itself loudly in incidents that the author again cherry picks.

All these two manage to do is draw the matter away from the real issues that should be debated.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

A good summation.

Another site with a defintion

http://onlinediction...om/word/fascism
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#11 Nonny

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 01:09 PM

MuseZack, on Feb 7 2005, 08:18 AM, said:

Now if you want to see something scary and more than a little fascist-like, try reading transcripts of some of the enemy combatant proceedings in Guantanamo.  Like this guy who was picked up on a sweep in Bosnia and here tries to answer a question:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Holy cr*p!  That is frightening!  It's the stuff of nightmares!  :eek2:

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#12 Call Me Robin

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 02:01 PM

MuseZack, on Feb 7 2005, 04:18 PM, said:

The political culture of the United States has gotten seriously ugly in the last several years, and some of the extrajudicial shenanagins in the War on Terror have been quite disturbing, but let's be serious.  John Kerry is still a free man and a member of the US Senate.  Our media may be cowed and pathetic, but that's a longstanding problem and not due to government edict.  Michael Moore is working on his next movie unmolested by the state, and nobody's suspended any elections or burned down the Reichstag. 

Yet.  That's the operative term.  YET.

The essay on "red state fascism" talks about a column a column by USA Today founder Al Neuharth who said that "the best way to support troops thrust by unwise commanders in chief into ill-advised adventures like Vietnam and Iraq is to bring them home. Sooner rather than later."  (Note: Neuharth is a World War II veteran.)  

And what was the response to Neuharth's piece?  Funny you should ask.

The rhetoric against the left has taken on a decidedly violent, eliminationist tone.  Note the bumper stickers saying "Save the rainforest, burn a liberal" and "Visualize no liberals."  Or the Free Republic crowd.  

Think what you will of Michael Moore; he has never suggested that we lock up conservatives or have them executed for treason.  Neither have Al Franken or the rest of the Air America crew.

On the other hand, Michael Savage's forthcoming book is called "Liberalism Is a Mental Disease," and Ann Coulter has said that the best way to talk to a liberal is "with a baseball bat."  

When anyone calls them on their ugly comments, their defenders rush to the fold.  

"C'mon--you really take that seriously?"  

"Aw, she's obviously exaggerating!"

"These people are just entertainers.  Lighten up!"

Indeed, conservatives are rather tepid in their response to the movement's current dangerous leanings.

Well, not all conservatives, of course.  In addition to the excellent essays quoted, here's a piece by the aforementioned Paul Craig Roberts, titled "The Brownshirting of America."  Apparently, Roberts's opposition to Bush led to so many angry responses that Townhall.com stopped posting his columns.

Today's conservative eliminationists are the ugliest kinds of anti-Americans there are.  They are the true "fifth column" in this country.

Journalist Dave Neiwert tracks these folks on a regular basis.  It's scary reading, but recommended.  We need to keep track of these people.  They have the power to lead this country to ruin.
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#13 Palisades

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 03:29 PM

Call Me Robin, on Feb 7 2005, 02:01 PM, said:

And what was the response to Neuharth's piece?  Funny you should ask.
The link doesn't work.

Finding an erudite way of saying that the right is being overrun with Nazis is about as effective at convincing people as saying that liberalism is a nihilistic virus.
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#14 Spectacles

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 03:32 PM

Quote

CJ: The aims of these authors seems to be along the lines of calling the Democrats a bunch of communists during the Cold War in order to attempt to erode the popular support for the party that existed then.

But given that Rockwell is a libertarian and the others are conservatives, one would wonder why they'd want to undermine the Republican party, which, with its emphasis on smaller, decentralized government, appeals to classic conservatives and libertarians. I'm not so sure their complaints arise from a desire to propagandize so as to hurt the Republican party.

Quote

CJ: I don't see how he can use this as a example of supporting fascism. Reducing, taxes, greater civil liberities, limited and decentarlized government has nothing to do with what facism is.

I don't think he was using it as an example of supporting fascism at all. The quote from Rothbard on the Gingrich revolution in 1994 was a warning that it was in danger of sliding off its moorings--the moorings being those "positives"--and losing sight of those aims. Here's where he went with that:

Quote

Foreshadowing what was to come, Rothbard [a conservative/libertarian] pointed out: "Unfortunately, the conservative public is all too often taken in by mere rhetoric and fails to weigh the actual deeds of their political icons. So the danger is that Gingrich will succeed not only in betraying, but in conning the revolutionary public into thinking that they have already won and can shut up shop and go home." The only way to prevent this, he wrote, was to educate the public, businessmen, students, academics, journalists, and politicians about the true nature of what is going on, and about the vicious nature of the bi-partisan ruling elites.

So, Rockwell's not saying that smaller gov't, etc., equal fascism. Not at all. His concern is this:

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The much heralded "leave us alone" coalition had been thoroughly transformed in a pure anti-Clinton movement. The right in this country began to define itself not as pro-freedom, as it had in 1994, but simply as anti-leftist, as it does today.

Rockwell, a libertarian, is all for the least government possible. What worries him is "...a kind of worship of the presidency, and a celebration of all things public sector, including egregious law like the Patriot Act, egregious bureaucracies like the Department of Homeland Security, and egregious centrally imposed regimentation like the No Child Left Behind Act. It longs for the state to throw its weight behind institutions like the two-parent heterosexual family, the Christian charity, the homogeneous community of native-born patriots."

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CJ: To me these two articles are cherry picking and in part contradict each other. They are trying to bend the ugly policy of fascism into something it isn't and then are looking at a small very vocal segment of the right that shows itself loudly in incidents that the author again cherry picks.

That may well be. Certainly, Rockwell uses examples from FreeRepublic, talk radio, and other ugly cogs in the propaganda mill with which to make his point. But, having visited FreeRepublic, listened to right-wing talk radio, read Ann Coulter, I see what seems to be worrying him.

Personally, I think it's important to monitor ourselves for excesses--whether we tilt toward the left or the right. Perhaps these writers on the Right are sounding an alarm not to condemn but to remind conservatives that the principles they espouse should prevent them from falling into a kind of worship of the Bush administration that brokes no dissent, or being so trusting of government, now that it's in the hands of Republicans, that they cease to question its intrustion in our lives.

Edited by Spectacles, 07 February 2005 - 03:35 PM.

"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#15 Call Me Robin

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 04:20 PM

Solar Wind, on Feb 7 2005, 08:29 PM, said:

Call Me Robin, on Feb 7 2005, 02:01 PM, said:

And what was the response to Neuharth's piece?  Funny you should ask.
The link doesn't work.

Finding an erudite way of saying that the right is being overrun with Nazis is about as effective at convincing people as saying that liberalism is a nihilistic virus.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Okay, let me try again.
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#16 Delvo

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 04:48 PM

Spectacles, on Feb 7 2005, 03:32 PM, said:

But given that Rockwell is a libertarian and the others are conservatives, one would wonder why they'd want to undermine the Republican party, which, with its emphasis on smaller, decentralized government, appeals to classic conservatives and libertarians. I'm not so sure their complaints arise from a desire to propagandize so as to hurt the Republican party.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That's not hard to explain at all; it's because the Republicans have NOT really stood for government minimalization like they were supposed to. That's been the general complaint among conservatives and libertarians for quite a while: that supposedly conservative politicians keep turning out to be liberals (or at most moderates or "something else") in disguise. (Liberal commentators see this same thing and call it hypocrisy within and among conservatives, which misses the point that people who don't act conservatively really aren't conservative, whether they say conservative-sounding words or not.)

#17 Spectacles

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 05:44 PM

Quote

That's not hard to explain at all; it's because the Republicans have NOT really stood for government minimalization like they were supposed to.

Good point. I think added to that is the conservative/libertarian concern about privacy and civil liberties, especially related to the Patriot Act. My own opinion is that much of the Patriot Act is OK, but some parts give the state an opportunity to abuse citizen's rights to privacy and due process--not saying they explicity do so, but provide loopholes that might be exploited. But the libertarians and many classic conservatives are as suspicious of the Patriot Act as are most liberals.
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#18 Spectacles

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Posted 07 February 2005 - 06:03 PM

Quote

We can contrast this with everyone's favourite facist state, Nazi Germany. There Protestant Churches were brought into the "One Reich Church", and were forced to teach Nazi-dominated religion. Ministers who opposed this, such as Martin Niemoller and Paul Schneider, were arrested and put into concentration camps. The Catholic Church was only saved because Hitler signed the Concordat in 1933 with the Pope where Hitler promised to leave them alone provided the Catholics stayed out of politics.

True, but Hitler certainly peppered his speeches, especially early on,  with references to God and Christianity, sometimes presenting himself to the people as an agent of God's will. Statements he made elsewhere indicate that he did so simply to manipulate the people. But that's sort of the point. In blending the notion of God and state, a leader can enable the people to blend their devotion to God and state. In this way, the state can be safely worshipped by the religious, without fear of idolatry or blasphemy, because their leaders are God's agents.


Here's Hitler in a public speech, 1922:

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My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded only by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God's truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before in the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice.... And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows. For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people.... When I go out in the morning and see these men standing in their queues and look into their pinched faces, then I believe I would be no Christian, but a very devil if I felt no pity for them, if I did not, as did our Lord two thousand years ago, turn against those by whom to-day this poor people is plundered and exploited.
-Adolf Hitler, in his speech on 12 April 1922

And another, twelve years later:

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National Socialism neither opposes the Church nor is it anti-religious, but on the contrary it stands on the ground of a real Christianity.... For their interests cannot fail to coincide with ours alike in our fight against the symptoms of degeneracy in the world of to-day, in our fight against a Bolshevist culture, against atheistic movement, against criminality, and in our struggle for a consciousness of a community in our national life... These are not anti-Christian, these are Christian principles! And I believe that if we should fail to follow these principles then we should to be able to point to our successes, for the result of our political battle is surely not unblest by God.
-Adolf Hitler, in his speech at Koblenz, to the Germans of the Saar, 26 Aug. 1934

And later...

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If we pursue this way, if we are decent, industrious, and honest, if we so loyally and truly fulfill our duty, then it is my conviction that in the future as in the past the Lord God will always help us. In the long run He never leaves decent folk in the lurch. Often He may test them, He may send trials upon them, but in the long run He always lets His sun shine upon them once more and at the end He gives them His blessing.
-Adolf Hitler, at the Harvest Thanksgiving Festival on the Buckeburg held on 3 Oct. 1937

And...

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In this hour I would ask of the Lord God only this: that, as in the past, so in the years to come He would give His blessing to our work and our action, to our judgement and our resolution, that He will safeguard us from all false pride and from all cowardly servility, that He may grant us to find the straight path which His Providence has ordained for the German people, and that He may ever give us the courage to do the right, never to falter, never to yield before any violence, before any danger.... I am convinced that men who are created by God should live in accordance with the will of the Almighty.... If Providence had not guided us I could often never have found these dizzy paths.... Thus it is that we National Socialists, too, have in the depths of our hearts our faith. We cannot do otherwise: no man can fashion world-history or the history of peoples unless upon his purpose and his powers there rests the blessings of this Providence.
-Adolf Hitler, in a speech at Wurzburg on 27 June 1937

So, his public face was one of a Christian. Privately, he had less kind things to say about Christianity. But the point, again, is that the power he drew from the German people depended in part on portraying himself as a believer in God's will who acted with God's will in mind. This image was necessary to foment German fascism.

http://www.nobeliefs.com/speeches.htm
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#19 Palisades

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Posted 08 February 2005 - 01:06 AM

Spectalces said:

So, his public face was one of a Christian.
No, it wasn't. The German priests and pastors simply did a miserable job teaching their congregations the history/philosophy/morals of their religion, and they were unable to spot Hitler's deception. With regard to the 1922 speech, the vipers and adders were desecrating the Temple not because they were Jewish, but because they were using it for buying, selling, and money changing rather than a house of prayer and healing. How the story of Gethsemane got twisted into an excuse for warmongering is beyond me (especially since the passage conveniently snips that part out). With regard to the second to fourth passages you quoted, it takes more than name dropping to make one a Christian. If this is the best that this No Beliefs site can come up with, they don't have a case.
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#20 Spectacles

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Posted 08 February 2005 - 07:11 AM

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The German priests and pastors simply did a miserable job teaching their congregations the history/philosophy/morals of their religion, and they were unable to spot Hitler's deception.

I agree.

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With regard to the second to fourth passages you quoted, it takes more than name dropping to make one a Christian.

I also agree with this. It was window dressing. But it was window dressing that helped him to sell fascism to the people. He didn't present himself to them as an atheist. So one can't really argue that the popular support of fascism was atheistic. Part of the fascist argument to the people seemed to be that the Germans were God's favorites in their spread of empire. Therefore, right was on their side. It was b.s., sure, but it helped him to further his cause. So it seems to have been a system in which some of the people entertwined their religious faith with faith in Hitler and the Nazi state.
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman



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