Victor Hansen Deconstructs the Left

Victor Hansen continues to expose the moral bankruptcy of today’s democrat left.
victorhanson.com/articles/hanson031805.html

“Little Eichmanns” and "Digital Brownshirts"
Deconstructing the Hitlerian slur
by Victor Davis Hanson
National Review Online

The effort to remove fascists in the Middle East and jump-start democracy, for all its ups and downs, has been opposed not just by principled critics who bristled at tactics and strategy, but also by peculiarly vehement cynics here and abroad — whose disgust was so often in direct proportion to their relative political impotence.

One of their most hackneyed charges, begun almost at the beginning of this war, has been the Bush/America as Hitler/Nazi Germany comparison. True, fast-changing events in the Middle East recently have left many of these hypercritics either embarrassed, discredited — or desperately reinventing themselves into the “I told you so” crowd. But we should not forget these slurs — nor expect them to disappear entirely inasmuch as they reflect a deep sort of self-loathing among Western elites.

Immediately after September 11, Ward Churchill compared the victims in the Twin Tower to “little Eichmanns.” Sen. Robert Byrd (D., W.Va.) more recently likened President George W. Bush’s political methodology to what transpired in Nazi Germany. Earlier during the run-up to the Iraqi war, German Justice Minister Herta Daeubler-Gmelin smeared Bush with a similar Hitlerian analogy.

In fact, what do Linda Ronstadt, Harold Pinter, Scott Ritter, Ted Rall, and George Soros all have in common? The same thing that unites Fidel Castro, the European street, the Iranians, and North Koreans: an evocation of some aspects of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany to deprecate President Bush in connection with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

At first glance, all this wild rhetoric is preposterous. Hitler hijacked an elected government and turned it into a fascist tyranny. He destroyed European democracy. His minions persecuted Christians, gassed over six million Jews, and created an entire fascistic creed predicated on anti-Semitism and the myth of a superior Aryan race.

Whatever one thinks of Bush’s Iraqi campaign, the president obtained congressional approval to invade and pledged $87 billion to rebuild the country. He freely weathered mass street demonstrations and a hostile global media, successfully defended his Afghan and Iraq reconstructions through a grueling campaign and three presidential debates, and won a national plebiscite on his tenure.

In a world that is almost uniformly opposed to the democratic Jewish state, Israel has no better friend than Bush, who in turn is a believer in, not a tormentor of, Christianity. Afghanistan and Iraq, with 50 million freed, have elected governments, not American proconsuls, and there is a movement in the Middle East toward greater democratization — with no guarantee that such elected governments will not be anti-American. No president has been more adamantly against cloning, euthanasia, abortion, or anything that smacks of the use of science to predetermine super-genes or to do away with the elderly, feeble, or unborn.

So what gives with this crazy popular analogy — one that on a typical Internet Google search of “Bush” + “Hitler” yields about 1,350,000 matches?

One explanation is simply the ignorance of the icons of our popular culture. A Linda Ronstadt, Garrison Keillor, or Harold Pinter knows nothing much of the encompassing evil of Hitler’s regime, its execution of the mentally ill and disabled, the systematic cleansing of the non-Aryans from Europe, or mass executions and starvation of Soviet prisoners. Like Prince Harry parading around in his ridiculous Nazi costume, quarter-educated celebrities who have some talent for song or verse know only that name-dropping “Hitler” or his associates gets them some shock value that their pedestrian rants otherwise would not warrant.

Ignorance and arrogance are a lethal combination. Nowhere do we see that more clearly among writers and performers who pontificate as historians when they know nothing about history.

On occasion, those who are tainted, sometimes unfairly, with past charges of rightist extremism, find some psychic release in calling an American democratic president or his conduct Nazi-like. Thus, a German politician, who de facto unfortunately operates under the suspicions of the post-Nazi world, gains the moral high ground and moral fides by gratuitously deflecting attention to an American — not as the descendant of the liberators of the Europe, but as the true inheritor of the German Hitlerian mantel.

George Soros can nearly destroy the Bank of England in his hyper-capitalist financial speculations but somehow find spiritual cover among the leftists of Moveon.org, which he subsidized and which ran ads comparing the president to Hitler. Sen. Byrd, who suffers from the odium of an early membership with the racist Ku Klux Klan, perhaps finds it ameliorative to associate others with the tactics of the 20th century’s premier racist.

Entire continents can play this game. If Europe is awash in anti-Semitism, then one mechanism to either ignore or excuse it is to allege that the United States — the one country that is the most hospitable to Jews — is governed by a Hitler-like killer. Americans, who freed Europe from the Nazis, are supposed to recoil from such slander rather than cry shame on its promulgators, whose grandfathers either capitulated to the Nazis or collaborated — or were Nazis themselves.

If the sick analogy to Hitler is intended to conjure up a mass murderer, then the 20th century’s two greatest killers, Mao and Stalin, who slaughtered or starved somewhere around 80 million between them, are less regularly evoked. Perhaps that omission is because so many of the mass demonstrators, who bore placards of Bush’s portrait defaced with Hitler’s moustache, are overtly leftist and so often excuse extremist violence — whether in present-day Cuba or Zimbabwe — if it is decorated with the rhetoric of radical enforced equality.

The flood of the Hitler similes is also a sign of the extremism of the times. If there was an era when the extreme Right was more likely to slander a liberal as a communist than a leftist was to smear a conservative as a fascist, those days are long past. True, Bill Clinton brought the deductive haters out of the woodwork, but for all their cruel caricature, few compared him to a mass-murdering Mao or Stalin for his embrace of tax hikes and more government. “Slick Willie” was not quite “Adolf Hitler” or “Joseph Stalin.”

But something has gone terribly wrong with a mainstream Left that tolerates a climate where the next logical slur easily devolves into Hitlerian invective. The problem is not just the usual excesses of pundits and celebrities (e.g., Jonathan Chait’s embarrassing rant in the New Republic on why “I hate George W. Bush” or Garrison Keillor’s infantile slurs about Bush’s Republicans: “brown shirts in pinstripes”), but also supposedly responsible officials of the opposition such as former Sen. John Glenn, who said of the Bush agenda: “It’s the old Hitler business.”

Thus, if former Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore breezily castigates Bush’s Internet supporters as “digital brownshirts”; if current Democratic-party chairman Howard Dean says publicly, “I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for" — or, “This is a struggle of good and evil. And we’re the good"; or if NAACP chairman Julian Bond screams of the Bush administration that “Their idea of equal rights is the American flag and the Confederate swastika flying side by side,” the bar of public dissent has so fallen that it is easy to descend a tad closer to the bottom to compare a horrific killer to an American president.

Is there a danger to all this? Plenty. The slander not only brings a president down to the level of an evil murderer, but — as worried Jewish leaders have pointed out — elevates the architect of genocide to the level of an American president. Do the ghosts of six million that were incinerated — or, for that matter, the tens of millions who were killed to promote or stop Hitler’s madness — count for so little that they can be so promiscuously induced when one wishes to object to stopping the filibuster of senatorial nominations or to ignore the objection of Europeans in removing the fascistic Saddam Hussein?

There is something profoundly immoral for a latte-sipping, upscale Westerner of the postmodern age flippantly evoking Hitler when we think of the countless souls lost to the historical record who were systematically starved and gassed in the factories of death of the Third Reich.

Finally, in such a debased climate, it was no accident that Alfred A. Knopf published a novel, Checkpoint, about musing how to kill Bush. Nor was it odd to hear of a New York play, “I’m Gonna Kill the President,” apparently centered around killing Bush. Late last year, a columnist in the Guardian, Charles Brooker, wrote to his British readers on the eve of the election :

On November 2, the entire civilised world will be praying, praying Bush loses. And Sod’s law dictates he’ll probably win, thereby disproving the existence of God once and for all. The world will endure four more years of idiocy, arrogance and unwarranted bloodshed, with no benevolent deity to watch over and save us. John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, John Hinckley Jr. — where are you now that we need you?

All this venom is not so funny when we now witness a Saudi American young man, Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, currently under indictment for allegedly planning just such a murder. After all, when it becomes a cheap and easy thing to compare a president to a century’s great criminal, then it becomes even cheaper and easier to dream — or plan — to kill him.

At some point a Gore, Byrd, or Soros has a moral responsibility not to employ Nazi analogy, if for no other reason than to prevent unleashing even greater extremism by the unhinged. No doubt Abu Ali’s lawyer one day soon will say that his disturbed client’s “musings” were no different from what he read from Knopf or in the Guardian — or that he simply fell under the influence of Moveon.org and thought it was his duty to remove the Bush/Nazi threat that even U.S. senators and presidential candidates had identified and warned about.

The final irony? The president who is most slandered as Hitler will probably prove to be the most zealous advocate of democratic government abroad, the staunchest friend of beleaguered Israel, and the greatest promoter of global individual freedom in our recent memory. In turn, too many of the Left who used to talk about idealism and morality have so often shown themselves mean-spirited, cynical, and without faith in the spiritual power of democracy.

What an eerie — and depressing — age we live in.

This argument is completely worthless since the right accuses the left of fascism with the same dreary frequency that small sections of some left wing groupings accuse the right of the same.

Fascism/nazism is the ultimate insult in todays political lexicon. Every side uses it all the time and anyone who pretends its just a left wing tactic is knowingly saying something which is untrue.

Anyone who repeats this slander is knowingly publishing an untruth.:tsktsk:

[quote=Matt25]This argument is completely worthless since the right accuses the left of fascism with the same dreary frequency that small sections of some left wing groupings accuse the right of the same.

:
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You’re kidding.

Nazism may be, but fascism is a type of government, like communism. Both communists and fascist governments actually do exist in this world. There are a number of fascist governments in the middle east. One in Syria, for example.

[quote=gilliam]Nazism may be, but fascism is a type of government, like communism. Both communists and fascist governments actually do exist in this world. There are a number of fascist governments in the middle east. One in Syria, for example.
[/quote]

How are you defining the word fascism? How are you defining the word communism?

[quote=swampfox]You’re kidding.
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conservativetruth.org/article.php?id=30

The dogma of that most resilient form of Nazism which we refer to by the silly term “Feminism” accepts as metaphysical truth (masquerading in pseudoscientific dress) the comical and evil notion that men are naturally evil. The selection of men, Jews, kulaks or some other group of people who have not actually chosen their heritage as pariah is the dark core of all the different virulent strains of liberalism.

Liberal monsters like Adolph Hitler, Betty Friedan, and Joseph Stalin do not look at people as people - each choosing moral or immoral lives, each given by his God a conscience to know right from wrong and a soul to connect him with the source of all goodness - but as material creatures, who are congenitally good or bad.

The above quote is not only arrant nonsense it is also an evil lie against the left. Or is it only one side that tells lies?

[quote=Matt25]How are you defining the word fascism? How are you defining the word communism?
[/quote]

Same way as Webster:
fascism
Etymology: Italian *fascismo, *from *fascio *bundle, fasces, group, from Latin *fascis *bundle & *fasces *fasces
1 often capitalized : a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition

communism
Etymology: French *communisme, *from *commun *common
1 a : a theory advocating elimination of private property b : a system in which goods are owned in common and are available to all as needed
2 capitalized a : a doctrine based on revolutionary Marxian socialism and Marxism-Leninism that was the official ideology of the U.S.S.R. b : a totalitarian system of government in which a single authoritarian party controls state-owned means of production c : a final stage of society in Marxist theory in which the state has withered away and economic goods are distributed equitably d : communist systems collectively

[quote=gilliam]Same way as Webster:
fascism
Etymology: Italian *fascismo, *from *fascio *bundle, fasces, group, from Latin *fascis *bundle & *fasces *fasces
1 often capitalized : a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascisti) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition
[/quote]

Does the Baath Party regime exalt the Syrian nation ubove the individual? Or the Syrian race? What are the doctrinal statements of Baathism? Where can I read them? What other Fascist regimes are there in the world today. Was Pinochet a fascist?

communism
Etymology: French *communisme, *from *commun *common
1 a : a theory advocating elimination of private property b : a system in which goods are owned in common and are available to all as needed
2 capitalized a : a doctrine based on revolutionary Marxian socialism and Marxism-Leninism that was the official ideology of the U.S.S.R. b : a totalitarian system of government in which a single authoritarian party controls state-owned means of production c : a final stage of society in Marxist theory in which the state has withered away and economic goods are distributed equitably d : communist systems collectively

China is not communist by this definition.

[quote=Matt25]Does the Baath Party regime exalt the Syrian nation ubove the individual? Or the Syrian race? What are the doctrinal statements of Baathism? Where can I read them? What other Fascist regimes are there in the world today. Was Pinochet a fascist?

China is not communist by this definition.
[/quote]

How would you categorize China?

Here is the CIA World Factbook definition, might be more appropriate for China: Communism - a system of government in which the state plans and controls the economy and a single - often authoritarian - party holds power; state controls are imposed with the elimination of private ownership of property or capital while claiming to make progress toward a higher social order in which all goods are equally shared by the people (i.e., a classless society).

How would you categorize China?

It is an authoritarian mixed economy at the moment but it is evolving towards an authoritarian form of capitalism. See worldbank.org.cn/English/Content/273v6319724.shtml

The current focus on corporate governance also builds on past and ongoing market reforms and should be viewed in the context of the natural progression of market reforms in China. It reflects the fact that market reforms in China have deepened and progressed to the stage of so-called second generation of reforms, where there is a need to tackle issues in a more integrated and comprehensive manner.

cipe.org/publications/fs/articles/John_Callebaut.htm

China’s introduction of economic reforms in 1978 gave the private sector greater control over the economy, but under an official state ideology that severely restricted citizens from organizing or participating in the policy-making process, any business associations that existed then were most likely adjuncts of the government with no accountability to their membership. In recent years, though, private business associations have begun to develop at the local level in cities all over China as the result of the government’s need to reduce spending combined with the desire of private entrepreneurs to translate their newly created wealth into an enhanced role in the policy-making process. These newly formed voluntary membership associations enjoy financial independence and focus on networking, information dissemination, and business facilitation, but they also provide members with access to government officials, thereby creating a forum for a public-private dialogue. Though hesitant to confront the government as differences of opinion on policy matters are uncovered, associations will have to transition into policy advocates or risk losing membership.

[quote=Matt25]Anyone who repeats this slander is knowingly publishing an untruth.:tsktsk:
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How can I know it is an untruth?

[quote=stumbler]How can I know it is an untruth?
[/quote]

If you search the net you will easily see examples of the left and the right both labelling each other Nazi’s. Knowing that but pretending only one side does it is untrue. The antidote to ignorance is knowledge. the alternative to parrotting slogans is to carry out research. Try it. Search out sources of information that you don’t agree with and then assess the value of their sources.

[quote=Matt25]If you search the net you will easily see examples of the left and the right both labelling each other Nazi’s. Knowing that but pretending only one side does it is untrue. The antidote to ignorance is knowledge. the alternative to parrotting slogans is to carry out research. Try it. Search out sources of information that you don’t agree with and then assess the value of their sources.
[/quote]

Because both sides may do it does not mean both sides are wrong nor does it mean that it is automatically “slander.”

So, again, how can you claim it is an untruth?

[quote=stumbler]Because both sides may do it does not mean both sides are wrong nor does it mean that it is automatically “slander.”

So, again, how can you claim it is an untruth?
[/quote]

No one who supports multi-party elections, freedom of the press, freedom of association and the existence of forums like this one can properly be called a Nazi. Those who bandy words like femi-nazi around are not only showing what ignorant bufoons they are they are also demeaning the real victims of nazism (many of whom were liberals, socialists, communists and/or labour unionists)

Thanks for the cites, Matt. Still doesn’t sound very capitalistic today though. And with the authority the State still holds, I would still categorize it as a communist state, probably within the CIA definition.

[quote=gilliam]Thanks for the cites, Matt. Still doesn’t sound very capitalistic today though. And with the authority the State still holds, I would still categorize it as a communist state, probably within the CIA definition.
[/quote]

But private ownership of the means of production is growing not diminishing in importance. It is collective and state forms of ownership which are contracting. They remain significant and state control is great. But the society is not evolving towards the elimination of private property as it was under Mao. It is evolving in the direction of an authoritarian capitalist system like for example Singapore.

There are no discernable traces of Marxism in the general thrust of modern Chinese economic policy.

The Peoples Daily carries this report english.people.com.cn/200412/06/eng20041206_166237.html
Efforts will be made to increase economic energy and competitiveness and continue to deepen corporate reforms; improve the supervisory management system for state-owned assets, set up and improve modern corporate system, actively promote the distribution of state-owned economy and internal restructuring, and prevent losses of state-owned assets.

Efforts will also be made to encourage, support and guide the development of non-public ownership economies, improve services and reinforce supervision, and constantly improve the quality of non-public ownership economies.

The macro-economic control system and its effectiveness should be improved, while reforms in fiscal and taxation system, financial system and administrative management system should continue to be deepened.

The conference also stresses the improvement of modern market system and optimized distribution of resources. The construction of capital, labor, technology and other elementary markets and social credit system should be accelerated. The economic legal system should be improved to rationalize and regulate economic relations.

It says that China’s reform is at a critical stage. The country must adhere to the reforming direction of socialist market economy and well handle the relations among reform, development and stability.

And this one english.people.com.cn/200503/19/eng20050319_177491.html
North China’s Tianjin Municipality plans to adopt preferential policies to help set up 1,000 new small and medium-sized technological businesses this year,which will create 10,000 jobs, according to the city’s science and technology committee.

The city now has nearly 50 technological business incubators, which will provide funds, office places, and training to potential business-starters. These incubators will help set up 1,000 small- and medium-sized technological firms.

Tianjin will also set up 30 guarantor enterprises and six industrial associations in light industry, metallurgy, chemical industry, electronics, cars and machinery.

The local scientific and technological association will set a special fund to support technological businesses. The fund will reach 30 million yuan (3.62 million US dollars) this year and increase each year.

[quote=Matt25]No one who supports multi-party elections, freedom of the press, freedom of association and the existence of forums like this one can properly be called a Nazi.
[/quote]

So the right is improperly called “nazi.” I agree with you. I gather Victor Davis Hanson agrees with you.

[quote=Matt25] Those who bandy words like femi-nazi around are not only showing what ignorant bufoons they are they are also demeaning the real victims of nazism (many of whom were liberals, socialists, communists and/or labour unionists)
[/quote]

Where does Victor Davis Hanson use the term “femi-nazi”?

How does America’s feminism, which supports, promotes, and provides mechanisms for the death of approximately 40 million babies over the last 30 years differ from the Nazis?

[quote=Matt25]But private ownership of the means of production is growing not diminishing in importance. .
[/quote]

I understand. But it is not fully implemented. At any time the nation state can nationalize any industry in China. They have recently done just that when they felt the industry was going contrary to their desired direction. Until that stops, we are not talking about capitalism, but something else.

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