Thursday, 3 March 2011

"We are socialists ...." Debunked

"We are socialists, we are enemies of today's capitalistic economic system for the exploitation of the economically weak, with its unfair salaries, with its unseemly evaluation of a human being according to wealth and property instead of responsibility and performance, and we are all determined to destroy this system under all conditions." --Adolf Hitler, Quoted in John Toland, "Adolf Hitler", p224.

Put into Google Hitler and socialist, and you're bound to come up with various websites with the above quote. Because of the way in which it get's used, i regard it as hitler's "There is no such thing as society" moment. What i mean is, A quote which is Always taken out of context to further a false point.

So what is the context you may ask? I provide the answer below.

It was to only try and wean some of the working class support over to him that he made references like he did to socialism. And that never really worked, the Nazis always had the least support from the working class. In that particular section of the book Toland is discussing Hitler's use of propaganda and his oratory style. He starts out by stating that the Berlin Nazi party (or Gau) was in disarray at this time and Goebbels was sent to straighten out the situation. He found that "The thousand party members under his jurisdiction were opposed on the streets by overwhelming numbers of Communists and Social Democrats." The course of action they decided on was to do everything they could to pick fights and to basically 'Red Bait' the Leftists in order to enflame violence, and to use propaganda to confuse the masses to try and weaken the real Left. "Goebbles decided it was now time to broaden the base of membership and to do that he had to attract the attention of the jaded public, "Berlin needs its sensations as a fish needs water", he (Goebbels) wrote" (ibid p223) So the best way they decided to inflame the situation was for violent action "SA troops deliberately sought out physical combat with the Reds," (Ibid p224) and for Hitler to give a speech on May Day. And not only that, but to give speeches in meeting halls that were taken over from the Communists. ""Making noise" he (Hitler) once said, "is an effective means of opposition"" (Ibid p224) And that is the true light that the quote must be taken as, making noise to provoke. False propaganda meant to inflame. Fights were started and the Newspapers proclaimed that there was this little known party, as it was not very large in Berlin at the time, fighting the Communists and Socialists. "The publicity was meant to be derogatory but in the next few days 2600 applications for membership were received," (Ibid p224) So this all served their purpose. And Toland, immediately after using the quote, and in the very next sentence of the same paragraph states, "This was followed by a long dissertation on Lebensraum, in Hitler's continuing effort to pound this concept into the membership. Sixty-two million Germans he said, were crowded into an area only 450,000 kilometers square. "This is a ridiculous figure when one considers the size of other nations in the world today." There were two solutions: either decrease he population by "chasing our best human material out of Germany" or "bring the soil into consonance with the population, even if it must be done by war. This is the natural way which Providence has prescribed." (Ibid p225)

Notice a couple of things here, first that he only uses one line calling himself a socialist and this is meant to inflame the Socialists and the rest of the Left, just get publicity and to confuse those that may not know the reality behind their party. The latter of which Hitler makes clear in his detailed policy of Lebensraum which has nothing to do with socialism. So not only does he merely state without any justification that he is a socialist, he makes it clear that his policy is not a socialist one but a racial and colonial one. So Hitler does not at all expound on the socialist statement, but he goes into detail on Lebensraum, which makes it clear that there is no real socialism behind his 'socialist' statement but there is to his expansionary and racist policies. "Again and again he hammered at race and the fact that Germany's future lay in the conquest of eastern territories. Over and over he preached his pseudo-Darwinist sermon of nature's way: conquest of the weak by the strong." (Ibid p226) As an honest reading of Toland would indicate; something that those that use this quote like Ray has obviously not done, but had probably only acquired it from a cheap Web search, probably from a Heritage institute or Glen Beck site; The mentioning of 'Socialist' was only propaganda. It is part of a larger section by Toland treating that subject and the attempt by the Nazi to develop support while weakening the other parties. Except for the racial policy and expansion, Hitler, when the party was first building its support, would say anything, no matter how disingenuous, to try and be attractive to every segment of the political society.

"The Nazis continued to be a catch-all party of social protest, with particularly strong support from the middle classes, and the relatively weak support from in the traditional industrial working class" Richard J Evans, "The Coming of the Third Reich" p295

45 comments:

  1. You should read:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/hitler-and-the-socialist-dream-1186455.html

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    1. George Watson is dishonest.

      Firstly, his primary source is Hermann Rauschning's "Hitler speaks" which is a proven fraud.

      In Mein Kampf Hitler writes:

      The Jewish doctrine of Marxism rejects the aristocratic principle of Nature and replaces the eternal privilege of power and strength by the mass of numbers and their dead weight. Thus it denies the value of personality in man, contests the significance of nationality and race, and thereby withdraws from humanity the premise of its existence and its culture. As a foundation of the universe, this doctrine would bring about the end of any order intellectually conceivable to man. And as, in this greatest of all recognizable organisms, the result of an application of such a law could only be chaos, on earth it could only be destruction for the inhabitants of this planet.

      Another one of his "sources" was imprisoned by Hitler for trying to take over a business from one of Hitler's capitalist allies.

      He also ignores the first genocides in africa committed by GERMAN CONSERVATIVES like Lother Von Trother etc.

      To call Watson a repulsive liar is being very kind to him. He is far worse than that.

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  2. The working class fought and dies for Hitler. He was a man of the "folk".

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  3. Read up on Fascism and Socialism. They are very close to each other. They were rivals, not opposites or very different. In the German election of 1933, the Communist Party was ordered by its leaders to vote for the Nazis -- with the explanation that they could later fight the Nazis for power, but first they had to help destroy their common enemy: capitalism and its parliamentary form of government. Maybe another way to say it is that Fascism and Socialism both are opposed to Democratic capitalism based on a moral foundation (Western Civilization).

    Take a look at Jonah Goldberg's "Liberal Fascism". It's a good read.

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    1. Jonah Goldberg? You're joking, right? How about reading the work of real historians and real political scientists and not the ratings of ideological partisan hacks such as Goldberb?

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    2. victoralz is right. The Nazis controlled the German economy, deciding what was produced and when. The Nazis even ordered Ferdinand Porsche to produce the Volkswagen and wrote arms manufacturer A.E. Krupp line of succession into the German constitution.

      "Most cruel joke of all, however, has been played by Hitler & Co. on those German capitalists and small businessmen who once backed National Socialism as a means of saving Germany's bourgeois economic structure from radicalism. The Nazi credo that the individual belongs to the state also applies to business. Some businesses have been confiscated outright, on other what amounts to a capital tax has been levied. Profits have been strictly controlled. Some idea of the increasing Governmental control and interference in business could be deduced from the fact that 80% of all building and 50% of all industrial orders in Germany originated last year with the Government. Hard-pressed for food- stuffs as well as funds, the Nazi regime has taken over large estates and in many instances collectivized agriculture, a procedure fundamentally similar to Russian Communism."

      (Source: Time Magazine; Jaunuary 2, 1939.)

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  4. Victoralz

    You are totally wrong.

    The communists were almost completely outlawed by the 1933 election. The Reichstag fire decree saw to that!

    The conservatives supported Hitler's "enabling act", the left opposed it.

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    1. That doesn't mean anything. Rival communists have fought each other many times. Communist China vs Communist USSR, Communist China vs Communist Vietnam, Communist Khmer Rouge vs Communist Vietnam. Did that make any of them any less communist, just because they fought one another? Certainly, when China broke away from the Soviets, there were pro-Russian Chinese elements who were jailed. The Communist Khmer Rouge even preached the racial inferiority of ethnic Vietnamese, to keep them out of Cambodian politics and put them into the grave. For Hitler to outlaw rival a socialist tribe is par for the course! What did Stalin do to Trotsky? Do you expect any less of hardline socialists?

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    2. Care to explain why private industry supported Hitler? Odd that private industry would support some one that hacks such as yourself claim was a raging socialist.

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    3. San

      Hitler privatized the economy,cut taxes for small business and supported conservative dictatorships in Europe: Franco being the prime example.

      Explain why Hugo Boss, Krupp, Flick etc. supported him?

      If you ally with conservaties while murdering socialists/ communists than you are mostly likely a rightwinger

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    4. Again, the mechanics of collectivism speak for themselves.

      The farthest right-wing ideology is Libertarianism, which fiercely pursues individualism free from state interference. The farthest left-wing ideology is communism, which which is all about collectivism. The fact is that those who are less talented and competent are likely to pursue collectivism to shore themselves up and offset their diminished personal talents, while those who are more talented and competent obviously are less likely to be attracted to collectivist behavior and thought. So that's why people of greater personal means are more likely to be libertarian.

      Likewise, if you look at the Nazi hatred of Jews, it wasn't because they were poor but rather because many were wealthy and successful. That again reflects the socialist propaganda against "elites" and its championing of the "common man".

      Even today, the strongest anti-semitic propaganda comes from the Left and from Islamists (another highly collectivist ideology). Furthermore, both of these groups mutually support one another in solidarity against the Jews. Hitler's favoritist tilt towards Muslims such as the Turks and even the Mufti of Jerusalem is well documented.

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    5. "Nazi hatred of Jews, it wasn't because they were poor but rather because many were wealthy and successful."

      Nonsense, Hitler supported the "Wealthy and Successful" "Aryan Germans" such as Krupp, Flick, Thyssen etc. his hatred of Jews was shared by most German conservatives and indeed capitalists at the time.

      You mention the Mufti of Jerusalem...Hitler was more keen to ally himself with European christian leaders than those from the middle east. His support for Franco proves my point.

      Hitler's antisemitism was typical of the Right....he associated Jews with Marxism(communism) and Social democracy

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    6. Capitalism does not mean a system of capital that is run by the government. That's called Fascism. Krupp, Flick, and Thyssen may have owned their properties, but their work and their product were dictated by the Fuhrer. That is not capitalism. That is what the Italians called Fascismo.

      "Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini

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    7. In the words of the Austro-libertarian economist Ludwig von Mises "It cannot be denied that Fascism and similar movements aiming at the establishment of dictatorships are full of the best intentions and that their intervention has, for the moment, saved European civilization. The merit that Fascism has thereby won for itself will live on eternally in history. But though its policy has brought salvation for the moment, it is not of the kind which could promise continued success. Fascism was an emergency makeshift. To view it as something more would be a fatal error."

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    8. Fascism the state still controls the corporations. They are just much more better economist than communists.

      Communist would nationalize a successful business and give it to their no experience family members and insiders to run that's why it goes into the crapper.

      Fascists would nationalize a business and allow the owner to continue to run the business but under the governments rules.

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  5. Sounds like you are stretching....

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  6. can't wait to read your next column on how Obama does not really advocate socialist policies... makes for great fiction.

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    1. Obama and socialist policies? Yeah handing over billions in public funds to banks and Wall Street is really a "socialist" thing to do. You hacks who scream "socialist" in response to anything you don't like or don't agree with are quite annoying.

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    2. This piece is insightful, in that it points out the disingenuous use of language and posturing by a politician who seeks to undermine the institutions he is sworn to protect. It is unkind to suggest Obama is anything like Hitler personally, but the fascist elements and demagoguery in practice bear very strong resemblances to the practices of past regimes whose ulterior motives brought about some very undesirable consequences. In this sense, those who use the above quote may well misunderstand the context, but in context it seems to apply much more deeply.

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    3. Isn't Obamacare a socialist policy?

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  7. The yoga Leftists will perform to deny the obvious never ceases to amaze.

    "Debunk"? No, doublethink.

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  8. Most of you people commenting here are idiots. The fact of the matter is that the political beliefs, words and actions of most people - Hitler included - can't be put neatly into on ideological box and have a simple label put on it. The only people who do that are ideologues and hacks. Though it does seem the far right in the US have a most annoying habit of denying that any horrors have come from the reaches of the far right and engage in the most despicable methods to prop up that "belief". Including lying about history to outright propaganda.

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    1. Really? My grandmother who escaped Nazi Germany wouldn't even allow us to use the word socialism around her. She lived through it up until 1938 when she was able to escape to America with my grandfather and a few great aunts and uncles. She had one sister who was deemed "mentally ill" by the state and taken away to the camps and killed.
      Despite what your left wing professors like to tell you in college about Nazism and the far right. Conservatives by definition want less government not MORE. The further right you go.. it takes you to anarchy(no authority). Nazism and communism are closely related. Both were completely antisemitic as well.
      So I will take my grandmother and grandfathers word on what life was like under the Nazi regime and how they personally extolled the virtues of capitalism and freedom over the tyranny of the state that they experienced under the National Socialist Party

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    2. You are a dunce.

      According to the United state holocaust memorial museum:

      "Among the earliest victims of discrimination and persecution in Nazi Germany were political opponents -- primarily Communists, Socialists, Social Democrats, and trade union leaders. "

      Not a single conservative, capitalist or right wing politician is MENTIONED.

      Were Krupp,Flick,Hugo Boss,IG Farben and Siemens Socialists too?



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    3. You fellows just do not get it. Of course Krupp, Flick, Hugo Boss, IG Farben and Siemens supported Fascism because it protected them from competition. It provided them with slave labor and all they had to give up was control over their industries.
      You suggest that Obamacare is not fascist but it seek to do the same thing that Fascist economics always seek. To control business not to own it. Obamacare takes over control of medical care in the USA ands that is Fascism.

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  9. Hitler did nothing but describe his dogma as "socialism" (e.g. see "Mein Kampf" and "Triumph of the Will" where the term "Nazi" and "Fascist" never appear as a self-description and where "socialist" is used in a droning manner). Although an ancient symbol, the swastika was altered by German socialists and used it to represent crossed S-letters for their "socialism." It is always important to point out that the Nazis were socialists ("National socialists" - and they did not call themselves Nazis nor Fascists) and that Edward Bellamy and Francis Bellamy (author of the pledge) were also self-described "national socialists" who touted (from 1888 and 1892 onward) what they called "military socialism," and they wanted the military system imposed on all of society to promote socialism (the pledge and government schools were part of that plan), and they deliberately promoted their views worldwide, including in Germany, before German national socialists picked up the same behavior. Socialists want people to use the term "Nazi" and to forget all of the above about national socialism in the USA, Germany and globally. See the work of the symbologist Dr. Rex Curry.

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    1. "German socialists and used it to represent crossed S-letters for their "socialism."

      Dumbest thing i have ever heard. The Swastika was an ancient hindu symbol and had nothing to with "s-letters".

      National socialism, in practicse, is a capitalist ideology which promotes private property and anti communism.

      Heard of Krupp, Flick, Hugo Boss and IG Farben. Capitalists like Rex Curry try to deny the capitalist nature of nazi germany by denying the crimes of German capitalists.

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    2. Hitler didn't copy the swastika from an ancient Hindu symbol. He copied it from a Christian cross that was in the church in which he spent many hours as a young boy.
      You know, if you write "dumb" and derivatives at every few lines nobody will take your comments seriously. Derogatory comments are of common use among those who don't have any rational argument to expose.

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    3. All your arguments have utterly failed.....I actually have an argument..... do you think "Hugo Boss" and Kurt schmidt(founder of Allianz) were "socialists" Too?

      You are a complete and utter joke.

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  10. I don't understand why so many on the left don't see the significant similarities with fascism and socialism. What can we infer about a country, like Nazi Germany, that had a nationalized health care system, nationalized education and an economy built upon central planning? Doesn't socialism primarily follow the same path? Does anybody on the left honestly think that private ownership actually existed in Nazi Germany; that all business owner's were not at the behest of the totalitarian regime? My philosophy on the matter, is that tyranny has no ideological bias. When the people of any community empower a government that strips them of all their rights, and puts their livlihoods at the behest of those in power, does it really matter if they are on the left or the right?

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    1. Germany had a nationalized healthcare system since the 19th century and most countries have nationalized education.

      Private ownership DID exist in Nazi Germany. Hence the trials of the great German capitalists at Nuremberg.

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  11. There is a fine line between fascism and socialism, whether the government actually owns the means of production or have taken business over by over regulation of it. The government now controls healthcare through obamacare and therefor controls 1/4 of the economy. So yes Hitler was a socialist of a different breed. No they didn't take ownership of business but they did nationalize it. Leftist who claim that claim that fascism is a right wing group show either just how far they are to the left or are ignorant of the political spectrum.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=j7M-7LkvcVw

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    1. Hitler found his greatest support in traditionally conservative small towns. He campaigned with attacks on Marxism, making it clear that by Marxism he meant the Social Democrats. Hitler appealed to morality, attacking free love and what he inferred was the immorality of Berlin and some other major cities. He promised to stamp out big city corruption. He called for a spiritual revolution, for a "positive Christianity" and a spirit of national pride. Hitler repeatedly called for national renewal. He and his National Socialists benefited from the recent upheaval in the Soviet Union and the rise in fear and disgust for Bolshevism. His party's posters read:

      If you want your country to go Bolshevik, vote Communist. If you want to remain free Germans, vote for the National Socialists.

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  12. What I see here is that the so-called "debunkers" are supporters of socialism themselves. Blatant conflict of interest - hardly the credible crowd to be exercising objectivity or impartiality.

    Let's also note that Stalin and Mao killed similar numbers of people on the same scale as Hitler did.

    Collectivism is more likely to lead to mass-murder and other rights abuses. Another problem is that die-hard supporters of such ideologies lead themselves into a culture of denial and endless search for "counter-proofs" solely for the purpose of alleviating any subconscious feelings of guilt.

    But hey, I understand - it's very unpleasant to see one's own ideology exposed for its association with massive human rights violations. An inability to question one's own beliefs then leads to desperate exercises to "de-bunk" that which caused the unpleasant revelation.

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    1. Collectivism.....Democracy is a form of collectivism you ignorant twit.

      Hitler,like most rightist, was a individualist who believed that all power should be concentrated in the hands of one man. The Fuehrer.

      You arguments were pathetically weak...Socialism is an economic ideology and you did mention ONE economic policy of the Nazis that could be described as Socialist.

      The fact that you deny that capitalists used slave labor with the endorsement of Adolf Hitler shows that you are willing to deny basic tenets of the holocaust just so you can fell better about your murderous ideology.

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    2. You are an incompetent at exposing arguments.

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  14. You dont even need to "debunk" it. This quote by Hitler is utterly false. Toland invented it.

    You can yourselves get the book "Hitler: Reden, Schriften, Anordnungen, Februar 1925 bis Januar 1933" in any good library and it is there the full May 1st 1927 speech, the exact one Toland is citing with nothing less than 10 different primary sources of that speech and ALL OF THEM DO NOT CONTAIN THIS QUOTE. It is a speech mainly about Lebensraum.

    John Lukacs, a conservative anti-soviet and anti-nazist historian, wrote in "The Hitler of History" that Toland invented a lot of stuff and many of his "curiosities" are invented.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Very interesting....thanks for the info.

      I believe Toland just used Strasser speech and attributed to Hitler.

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  15. So I suppose calling themselves "National Socialists" was a bit of a gaffe, eh?

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    1. No, the German National Socialists regarded conservative leaders such as Bismark and Fredrich the Great as Socialists....they defined the word socialism differently...a form of rightwing patriotism as the author mentions in another one his pages.

      the CEO of Allianz, Hugo Boss, Krupp etc. were all members of the National socialist party.

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  16. Regardless of the semantical arguments pertaining to the language used by the Nazi party, what Hitler proved is how easily the ideals of socialism can be used to manipulate the masses and create a totalitarian state. I know that many who favor socialism want to differentiate themselves from anything Nazi, however that doesn’t mean you have the opportunity to ignore the many aspects of how the two are related. Central planning, for example, is a significant aspect of a socialist economy, just as it was under Nazi Germany. The private economy was heavily regulated, and in most other instances, the Nazi’s actually controlled production, under the guise of private ownership. Couple that with wage and price controls, forced employment through public works programs, the depletion of individual liberties in place of collective liberties, and state-sponsored media, healthcare and education, it becomes quite evident that Nazism, was indeed just another form of socialism.

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  17. Might I point out Hitler named HIS party Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP); Translated: National Socialist German Workers Party.

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  18. He mentions that several times...not too bright are you?

    I notice you are an American. Mussolini's party was called the Italian Fascist REPUBLICAN party whilist the first party to rule Islamic Iran was called the Islamic REPUBLICAN party.

    I also point out that the CEO of Allianz, Hugo Boss, Krupp etc. were all members of the National socialist party. They were all rightwing capitalists.

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