Schneibin' since 1984
Join Date: Jan 2009
Originally Posted by RED DAVE View Post
Then these historians are dead wrong.
What, all of 'em? C'mon, Dave, if you want to make up your own definitions of "left" and "right" that's fine, but please don't expect anyone else to understand what the fuck you're talking about or agree with you.
Originally Posted by RED DAVE View Post
They were firmly capitalist and of the Right. The Right is quite capable, like liberals, of supporting welfare policies such as unemployment. This does not make them socialist any more than it makes them liberals.
Support for the unemployed is pretty firmly left; right thinks they should fend for themselves, maybe with the help of charity if they're not too grabby (you know, insisting that their children have to eat and stuff like that). In addition, there were major public works projects both for general public benefit and to put people to work (the autobahn system, which is much like the US interstate highway system, was put in place during this time), and in support of the war effort once that started (bunkers and such like). The right thinks that all should be done by private enterprise, not the state.
Most significantly of all, they also originally said they would nationalize large industrial concerns, banks, and department stores. Strong support within the party for these policies continued through the mid-1930s, until the purges of the party began which ultimately changed the focus to the racial purity, nationalism, and lebensraum goals that are strongly popularly identified with the Nazis today, though the support of the workers continued. Much of the racial purity program focused on the upper middle and lower upper classes, substantially comprised of the Jewish Germans whose disenfranchisement accomplished at least some of the nationalization goals originally stated.
You can find substantial information on this in A Concise History of Nazi Germany, by Joseph W. Bendersky, published by Rowman and Littlefield in its third edition in 2006. Google Books has a sample available online; try googling "nazi history nationalize corporations." It was the second hit for me. Bendersky is also the author of Carl Schmitt, Theorist for the Reich, which if you know much about the neo-conservative movement in the US you will know was a major influence on Leo Strauss; read more about that here. He is also a widely cited author among historians of the Second World War and Nazi Germany. And finally, he is a Professor of History, and Chair of the History Department, at Virginia Commonwealth University, and is one of the foremost historians of WWII and Nazi Germany in the world.
As far as references go, am I gonna believe the college professor and sitting history department chair whose work is widely cited by experts in the field, or some anonymous dude on teh Intarwebs? The answer seems pretty damn obvious to me.
Now, your little ideological problem might make you feel that it's necessary to denigrate every reference that mentions anything the Nazis did as being leftist, but there are some of us who are a lot more interested in what actually happened, not only at the end but at the beginning. The reason is because we'd like to make sure it doesn't happen again, wherever we happen to live. And to do that we need to be aware of what actually happened and we don't give a shit about your little ideological problem. So if you want to talk about what actually happened, then let's do that, but if you're just gonna make stuff up because what you're hearing doesn't fit your ideology, nobody's gonna believe it or care, because we care about actual history, not your little ideological problem. K?
If that rankles, perhaps you'll consider whether you wish to accuse me of being patronizing another time; if you're gonna make the accusation, my attitude is, I'm gonna make damn sure you get patronized. Might as well be hung for a sheep as a lamb. And the accusation pisses me off, particularly since that wasn't what I was trying to do.
And I'll also repeat that if all you're doing is making stuff up, what makes your ideology any better than the neocons'? Because that's what they do. The Big Lie is a well-known technique of theirs, and they got it from exactly the source I just mentioned: Carl Schmitt. The ends must justify the means, and as far as I'm concerned there is no possible justification for making stuff up about history. Santayana is often misquoted as saying, "Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it," and as far as I'm concerned that's justification for always making sure that you get history right. There is no ideological goal that I think is more important. And it's this last that concerns me the most and was the primary motivation for my first post. "I'm not interested in facts, my mind's made up" is no more palatable or useful from the left than it is from the right, as far as I'm concerned.