Uncanny echoes of Nazism

It is an unsettling thing to watch a right-wing movement move to an extreme position and appropriate so many of the tactical tics of, say, the Nazis.

When the Nazis controlled the mass media in Germany it was easy enough for the party to get their unchallengeable message across to every citizen. They had a network of spies who informed on disloyal citizens, anyone privately critical of the one-party narrative. These traitors met with harsh, often gruesome fates. In many cases, they were turned in by their own true believer Nazi children, loyal members of the Hitler Youth (Hitlerjugend).

An example of a debatable Nazi talking point, Jews had to be destroyed because they were responsible for the war. Hitler had invaded Poland, unprovoked, because of the Jews. The Jews, you see, were said to be a highly infectious disease that had to be eradicated. Every vice in the great German nation you could think of was a result of poisonous Jewish devilry. The only way to purify the blood of the Aryan Reich and make Germany great again was to exterminate this Judaic bacillus. The news was dispensed day after day in a way that made this controversial “theory” seem not only entirely reasonable but in urgent need of immediate action (or “aktion” in Nazi-speak).

If you get your news from FOX (Rupert Murdoch), or from even more extreme right-wing sources, One America News Network (OANN) or Newsmax, you get a version of reality very much at odds with the facts that can actually be established by things like court verdicts, bipartisan election certifications, real-time videos, written statements, spoken statements, sworn statements made under the penalty of perjury.

In the MAGA telling, the January 6 MAGA riot, for example, was not the result of a long, well-funded, long-planned campaign based on the lie that Trump won in a landslide and that communists, anarchists, anti-fascists (imagine how sick that is!) insane lying, violently rioting Blacks, angry radical Democrats and disloyal, lying Republicans had rigged the election against him, it was a spontaneous show of completely understandable patriotic fervor.

The 140 Capitol Police officers supposedly injured by this crowd of peaceful protesters? Never happened, radical left propaganda. OK, injured cops are speaking up, showing up in Congress to testify. Well, it may have happened, but it was not Trump fans but terrorists from antifa and BLM who did all the damage, viciously attacked the police, who all supported Trump 100% and kissed and hugged the actual peaceful Trump supporters, who behaved like normal tourists (who’d smoked crack or crystal meth a moment earlier). Actually, wait, it was an FBI false flag operation to make Trump, who actually won in a landslide, look like the inglorious loser he will never be!

A logical question I heard some pundit ask the other day: if the FBI staged this evil thing to make Trump look like a treasonous, seditious loser, wouldn’t you want a complete and thorough bipartisan investigation into the fucking FBI? Not the case with the lockstep GOP — they have learned from recent Trump/McConnell/Barr history. They want any finding about the January 6 “riot” to be dismissible as a complete and total “partisan witch hunt” and they know their solid 39% will believe that theory no matter what the radical partisan Democrat liars try to produce as “evidence”.

It is, of course, a mistake to look for logic in any of this. Just like the average disgruntled German who listened to Nazi media broadcasting every evening and came to believe as indisputable fact whatever was confidently repeated several times, the average American who gets only one political opinion, the same talking points echoed endlessly, will never even consider the likely notion that, if Trump indeed was lying about all the traitors who rigged the election against him, the dozens of lost lawsuits dismissed for lack of evidence of the rigged election, the expenditure of $50,000,000 to advertise the lie that he’d actually won, organizing a mass gathering to physically Stop the Steal and prevent the peaceful transition of power, and gave a fiery speech immediately before the riot that incited an already angry crowd to break through police barricades, fight the police and storm the Capitol, forcing legislators and their staffs to run for their lives, as the law abiding mob did $1,400,000 worth of damage to the building, maybe . . . Trump didn’t actually win in a landslide.

No matter. As we see from history, authoritarians rely on certain things, primarily blind obedience from their followers, who are inclined to believe whatever supports their view of a world run by vicious enemies who are mercilessly screwing them and need to be fought without mercy. Another common feature of authoritarian mobs is ready, justifiable, righteous violence against these rightfully hated enemies. This violence encourages obedience, or fearful silence, which also helps.

The one thing that every right-wing movement has in common is an unshakable belief in a strongman, an infallible leader with the will to destroy all of their despicable, dangerous enemies. In the case of Trumpism, that leader is Trump. As Trump’s German born grandfather [1] might have said:

The leader is always right.

The Führerprinzip (German: [ˈfyːʀɐpʀɪnˌtsiːp] (listen); German for ‘leader principle’) prescribed the fundamental basis of political authority in the Government of Nazi Germany. This principle can be most succinctly understood to mean that “the Führer‘s word is above all written law” and that governmental policies, decisions, and offices ought to work toward the realization of this end.[1] In actual political usage, it refers mainly to the practice of dictatorship within the ranks of a political party itself, and as such, it has become an earmark of political fascism.

source
Amen to that, morons

[1]

Trump’s entrepreneurial grandfather, Friedrich Trump, trained as a barber, was deported from Germany for fleeing to avoid military service (and tax evasion when bringing in his American-made fortune). Interesting bit from Wikipedia:

During the Klondike Gold Rush, Trump travelled to the Yukon Territory and made his fortune by operating a restaurant and a brothel for miners in the boomtown of Whitehorse.[1][2] Trump then returned to Bavaria and married Elisabeth Christ, the daughter of a former neighbor.

As he had emigrated to America in order to evade conscription, the Bavarian Government stripped Trump of his citizenship and permanently banished him following an investigation. As a result, Trump and his family returned to the United States. He became a U.S. citizen in 1892.

Trump worked as a hotel manager and was beginning to acquire real estate in Queens when he died in the 1918 flu pandemic. He was the father of Frederick Christ Trump and John G. Trump, and the paternal grandfather of former 45th U.S. president Donald Trump.

source

The poor man died during a pandemic from a lack of hydroxychloroquine . . . an eerie echo of history.

The sometimes shady details of how he made his fortune are fascinating to read (see the article above), and another eerie echo of history.

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