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Will Hitler be seen in a more positive way in the far future?

Discussion in 'World History' started by christos200, Jul 26, 2013.

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  1. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    "Cross-class" and "classless" are very different things. The practical logic of Fascism and Nazism still revolves around the existence of distinct and conflicting classes and the management of these conflicts by the state; that this mediatory role is dressed up as classless national unity has no more bearing on the reality of things than the liberal insistence on a society of atomised classless individuals- or Stalinist claims of a classless socialist utopia. All of them ways of organising a capitalist state in ways which diffuse and obscure class conflict.
     
  2. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    All of which says little about the actual classes both Nazism and Fascism received support from. But, you do hint at one important aspect of Fascism: that it might even be based on peasant support, as it was in some Balkan countries. The key element of both movements being 'classless', however, has been thoroughly debunked through extensive research into the actual support for both movements from society. Which isn't really that surprising, because we are talking about extreme right wing movements.

    Interestingly, in Germany, Communism misguidedly actively supported the Nazi efforts to overthrow the Weimar republic. This didn't stop the Communist party from producing the 'consequent anti-Fascist' myth that was so dear to the comrades in the GDR.
     
  3. Tahuti

    Tahuti Writing Deity

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    Well, the biggest difference of Stalinism and Fascism is that Stalinism was a modification of an ideology representing international proletarian interests to represent exclusively Russian proletarian interests. Later, the proletarian part came to mean nothing: In principle, all Soviet citizens were to be considered proletarians though some "proletarians" were clearly more influential than others. In effect, Stalin's USSR introduced a new type of class system without capitalists or aristocrats, with "apparatchiks" taking this role. (With the "fall of communism" - as if that ever existed - those apparatchiks would come to closely approximate capitalists in the marxian sense)

    Now Fascism and Nazism never had solid constituencies to get support from. Provided you come from the right ethnic group, everyone regardless of class can become a Fascist. And Fascism is supported by Fascists. This may sound completely obvious, though it isn't. Everyone who isn't a Fascist is a potential target for Fascists, regardless of class. So Fascism is sort of the inverse of Stalinism: Rather than picking one class - Proletarians - and creating a new societal hierarchy from them as happened in Soviet Communism, Fascism creates a federation of classes in a hierarchical fashion, based on their use to the national cause - not class - and pits it against those who identify more with their class than with their nation and other nations simultaneously. A proletarian who is perceived to be an asset to the national cause may or may not command higher prestige than the wealthiest landowner in a Fascist society, which also makes Fascism distinct from Capitalism and Feudalism.

    Noted.

    Are you sure? I thought the Communists even went as far as supporting Paul von Hindenburg to counter Nazism. At least that was true for most left-wing factions in Weimar Germany. It is worth noting that the chancellorship of Brüning and his role in the emergence of Nazism is often overlooked as well.
     
  4. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    I wouldn't know by whom. Hitler also received quite open support from major industrialists. And the German CP didn't support Hindenburg, they had their own candidate: Ernst Thälmann.

    The German Communist attitude was directly inspired by Moscow, so the German CP wholeheartedly supported Nazi efforts to undermine the working of the Weimar republic. Of course, when their joint efforts succeeded, they fell as much victim to Nazi rule as their 'Social-Fascist' friends, the SPD. (The term 'Social-Fascism' is also from this period, oddly.)
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2016
  5. Tahuti

    Tahuti Writing Deity

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    The Gleichschaltung perceded the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact by 6 years. Surely you were aware of that?
     
  6. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    Quite. The USSR-Germany pact of 1939 has no relevance. Much more so probably the - partly Communist - revolts of 1918, which were suppressed by the then SPD government. Be that as it may, the fact remains that the KPD voluntarily cooperated with NSDAP efforts to obstruct the workings of the republic during the early 1930s. (The cooperation even went so far that the official KPD program borrowed phrases from their partners on the other side of the political spectrum, and their periodicals praised the NSDAP openly - even to the point of Anti-Semitism). The comrades expected their own revolution to follow, of course, but here their expectations were quite off the mark. So it wasn't just the extreme right that underestimated Mr Hitler.
     
  7. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    I'd say that Stalinism was already capitalist. Heavy state intervention, obsession with national development, fervent chauvinism, but still basically capitalist, in every useful or practical sense of the word. All the stuff about "proletarians" was just baggage from the stillborn council system, the result of trying to build a state from the ground-up. As in fascist states, the logic of the state was still essentially capitalist, a way of managing capitalism and the conflicts which it produces, of diverting tensions within society, especially but not limited to tensions of class, into the boundaries of the state. Arguably more so, because Stalinism always had a clear logic of "national development": consolidation of agriculture on capitalist lines, aggressive development of heavy industry, essentially a high-speed rerun of Britain between 1700 and 1850. (Arguably that's why Britain never had a powerful Communist Party: it's work had already been done.) In contrast, neither fascism nor Nazism saw past the immediate disruption of class conflict. Once they'd got that more-or-less under wraps, they couldn't think of anything to do but start war after war after war until it was time to go swing from a lamppost.

    In theory, that's true, but "prestige" is, what, coloured ribbons? Kind words on the radio? It doesn't tell you about the actual structure of society, about who calls the shots, about who gets to keep the cash. Confucian regimes in held the peasantry second in prestige only to the nobility, and even in Japan only to the broader samurai class, but that in no way ensured peasants retained control of their land, labour or produce. Why should we imagine that fascist regimes, which had no fear of Heaven's wrath falling upon an ignoble ruler, should have been any more honest?
     
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  8. Flying Pig

    Flying Pig Utrinque Paratus Moderator

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    I'd be very careful of dismissing things like ideology and prestige in favour of the 'real stuff' of economics. There has to be some room for false consciousness, but also some for realising that how people think about the world and where people stand in it is important. These things affect how people act - to use Tovergeiter's example, in a system where this nationalist proletarian is perceived as higher-status than a wealthy landowner, that might have a very tangible effect if the two ever find themselves in a police station, or opposite each other in court, and knowing that will certainly affect how each of them is likely to behave towards each other. After all, if prestige is just 'coloured ribbons', you have to ask why just about every political system - including those supposedly founded on the understanding that economic power is what 'really matters' - invests hugely in it, using resources that could also be used to increase their control of the means of production.
     
  9. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Social systems don't exist at the level of individual interactions, though, they exist at the level of predictable and consistent patterns of behaviour. I agree that we should avoid being overly deterministic, that, as you say, there may be instances in which the admirably nationalistic workers gets one over on the suspiciously liberal boss, but the worker is still the worker and the boss is still the boss, that much stays the same, day in and day out, whether or not this hypothetical confrontation ever comes pass. I don't disagree that ideology can matter, but it has to be shown to matter, and there's precious little evidence that the fantastical imagination of the fascists was reflected in the basic structures of society under their rule.
     
  10. daft

    daft The fargone

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    Was he the reason the stache faded into nothing more but a brief movement during Movember, that is the quesion...
     
  11. jackelgull

    jackelgull An aberration of nature

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    Does Trump's election answer your question?
     
  12. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    I think it's safe to say that even Mr Trump knows that Hitler was 'a bad guy'. Or in Trumpspeak, 'a really, really bad guy. He was bad, y'know.'.
     
  13. daft

    daft The fargone

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    Reverse Hitler, perhaps, "Aryan" agenda's pretty much dead... So, perhaps, a new, Anti-Aryan Hitler, will rise to power in the 21st Century?
     
  14. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    So you are saying a non-Hitler will arise. That seems like predicting there will be weather tomorrow.
     
  15. Tahuti

    Tahuti Writing Deity

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    Are you basically saying the Five year plans were the Russian industrial revolution? Basically, the only communist states where marxism wouldn't be a theory of development would be any Eastern European state conquered by the USSR upon the conclusion of WWII.
     
  16. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    "Industrial revolution" is, if anything, too narrow. You're looking at the wholesale rationalisation of the economy, including argriculture and commerce, along capitalist lines.

    Which part of Eastern Europe? Moldova isn't Czechia. Heck, Prague isn't rural Moravia. Whether or not the Marxist-Leninist parties were particularly benevolent, they were universally agents of capitalist modernisation.

    (I mean, except Cambodia. But Cambodia was a weird.)
     
  17. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    That's not really a very accurate description of the 5 Year Plans, which focused on heavy industry and the collectivization of agriculture. The latter in particular didn't work out as planned, as privately owned land kept being more productive than collectively owned land.
     
  18. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Maybe not the 5 Year Plans alone, then, but the whole Stalinist program of "building socialism". Marxism-Leninism, far from a repudiation of capitalist economic development, was in all the places it became politically dominant a theory and program of capitalist economic development. Explicitly so, for the most part, they just kept insisting that this somehow amounted to "socialism" because red flags were involved.
     
  19. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    What is Capitalist about farm collectivization (i.e. state-owned farms)?
     
  20. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Consolidation and rationalisation of production, conversion of peasants into wage-workers, conversion of agriculture from surplus-production to commodity-production. Perhaps Stalinist collectivisation wouldn't be a capitalist project in, say, France, but in the context of early twentieth century Russian, collectivisation was absolutely a form of capitalist modernisation.
     
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