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Not All Bad Things Are Hitler

….and 2016 USA isn’t 1932 Germany.

The only problem I have with the really interesting article DarwinCatholic wrote is that he had to point these two aspects out.

Here’s a tiny sampler, go read the rest— and share it, please.  DarwinCatholic hit that sweet spot in “pop history” where the writing is perfectly understandable to those who are horrible with history, without being insulting.

Historical analogy is a powerful tool, and seeing echoes of the present in the past is one of the illuminating things about studying history. However, it’s at least as important to understand the differences between the past and the present as it is to see the similarities, and I think that in this case the differences are so great as to make analogies invalid.

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Foxfier

Former sailor, trained calibration tech, current mother, current geek; has a former sailor current geek computer tech husband, five kids and two spoiled barn cats. Has been "Foxfier" since before Mozilla existed, let alone renamed their browser "Firefox." It's a purposeful misspelling of the photo-luminescent effect-- for something that might look scary but is harmless. That's it.

10 Comments

  1. Even without all of the Weimar Republic’s weaknesses Hitler’s election shows up a problem with parliamentary systems, i.e., that one doesn’t need a majority of voters.

    See this video about the most recent elections in the UK to see how our “problems” with the Electoral College pale in comparison:

  2. Trump bears little resemblance to any inter-war fascist chieftain, most of whom were unremarkable middle-aged men in mundane life (when they weren’t complete no-accounts like Hitler and CZ Codreanu). He’s not advocated anything more astringent than enforcing the immigration laws and taking a more antagonistic stance in trade negotiations. And, of course, we’re not in the middle of a Depression and the chronic disorders we’re suffering in the political realm are of a different character. Reciting the history of the Weimar Republic does no good with these cretins, because the Trump-Hitler and Trump-Mussolini analogies are based on emotions. (The two characters pushing this line I’ve encountered both have faculty positions and one of them seldom utters an honest word).

  3. There are going to be some people who only believe it because they trust someone who has emotional reasons to believe it– and if this makes them realize they’re wrong about that, they might reconsider if “enforcing immigration laws” is really in the same class as “kill off the genetically unfit, defined to include all non-blond non-blue eyed in addition to everyone who is in the way.”

  4. Art Deco wrote, “unremarkable middle-aged men in mundane life (when they weren’t complete no-accounts…”
    Hardly a description of Primo de Rivera (2nd Marquis of of Estella, 22nd Count of Sobremonte, Knight of Calatrava &c) or Marshal Antonescu or Francisco Franco, who both had distinguished military careers.

  5. Hardly a description of Primo de Rivera (2nd Marquis of of Estella, 22nd Count of Sobremonte, Knight of Calatrava &c) or Marshal Antonescu or Francisco Franco, who both had distinguished military careers.

    Neither Franco nor Antonescu had any involvement in party politics during the inter-war period. Antonescu’s was a military regime, albeit one as coldly vicious to the Jewish population as any in Europe at that time bar Germany’s. He decapitated the Iron Guard by putting its leadership in front of firing squads in 1941. Franco was a military professional and the FET was a fusion of Falangists and Carlists to which the Alfonsine monarchists signed on, not a fascist party. Franco’s regime was authoritarian, but not revanchist in any way bar with reference to the regimes intramural enemies during the 1940s. In international relations, Franco and Salazar favored neutrality and the status quo. As for public policies, the Franco regime did replicate some of the features in industrial relations which you saw in Italy under Mussolini, but so did the Roosevelt Administration during the period running from 1933-35. See Allan Bloom on this point: Franco was the last manifestation of a regime of throne and altar, categorically distinct from the contemporary fascist regimes.

    While we’re at it, Primo de Rivera’s career in party politics was brief (3 years) and his Falange was at that time the most inconsequential component of the Nationalist bloc in the Spanish parliament – a fraction the size of the Carlists, or of the Alfonsine monarchists, much less of the Autonomous Right. And he wasn’t a person of peculiar accomplishment. He earned a living as a lawyer. So did Ante Pavelic. So did my great-grandfather. The fascist chieftains of peculiar accomplishment were to be found in Czechoslovakia, Norway, and Finland. The Czech and Norwegian parties never had much traction and the professor in charge of the Finnish Party was a stand-in for a farmer militiaman who’d been among the founding corps (but who was imprisoned at the time).

  6. “the Franco regime did replicate some of the features in industrial relations which you saw in Italy under Mussolini…”

    The Falange supported National Syndicalist policies; in effect, the corporatist state, often regarded as the defining characteristic of the fascism.

  7. Is there not a strong corporatist element in the political reality of Obama and Clinton?
    And that is to say nothing of the statist in them both. As Mussolini put it: “Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato” (Everything in the State, nothing outside the State, nothing against the State)
    Thank God for His mercy.

  8. often regarded as the defining characteristic of the fascism.

    Often by whom? That was a common feature of inter-war authoritarian regimes. You also saw attempts at it during the Roosevelt Administration and post-war tripartite bargaining schemes in various European countries. To refer to that as the salient feature of interwar fascism is bizarre.

  9. See this video about the most recent elections in the UK to see how our “problems” with the Electoral College pale in comparison:

    That’s not a problem of parliamentary systems. It’s a common feature of first-past-the-post award of parliamentary seats. Better adapted to the British (and Canadian) electorates would be ordinal balloting and the alternate vote, but the British public voted it down in a referendum in 2011. Complain to the British public.

  10. Art Deco wrote, “That’s not a problem of parliamentary systems. It’s a common feature of first-past-the-post award of parliamentary seats.”

    Precisely. Compare the result of the UK election in Scotland on the first past the post system, where the SNP gained 56 out of 59 seats and the Holyrood elections, which combines constituencies and a regional list system, where the SNP won 64 out of 121 seats.

    The reason many people support first past the post is that under a parliamentary system, the executive (the Cabinet) is a committee of the legislature, removable by a vote of no confidence and that effective government depends on the overall majority that such a system tends to produce, especially as a prime minister who looses a vote of no confidence can “go to the country” by calling a general election.
    It is, perhaps, no coincidence that the 2011 referendum was held under a coalition government.

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