Sunday, August 30, 2009

A New Rise

While sorting through some of my old books, I came across my old copy of William Shirer's classic book "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich", still today considered the definitive story of the Nazi era in Germany. I did not read the whole thing cover to cover again, but I did pick chapters here and there to review, mostly from the rise era.

It scared me to death.

For you see, I found frightening parallels between the rise of the right wing fanatic Adolf Hitler during Germany's greatest economic and political crisis and the USA's summer of discontent. Well trained and motivated hooligans are making a living going around comparing Obama and Democrats to Hitler. The most disturbing, and insane, images are these young (should I go so far as say Brownshirts or Hitler Youth???? maybe) instigators holding signs with Obama's image disfigured to look like Hitler.

These poor schleps can't even get history right. Hitler cared not a wink about people, especially poor, we all know that. If there is a Nazi movement in the US, it is from the right, not the left.

In 1930, Germany was a defeated, economically challenged disaster. The once proud nation was reeling. No longer a world power, no longer a leader, ashamed, crushed. Germans, looking around at their world, saw immigrants and people not like themselves coming in and taking jobs, making money, gaining power. Political leadership was corrupt, old fashioned and totally inept.

In the last decade, the US has faced similar, but hardly exact challenges, but similar enough to give one pause. The US is battered by a fast changing world economy, American industrial icons like General Motors, Chrysler, Boeing, General Electric, Kodak, I could name more, are no longer world leaders, usurped by Asia, Europe and even Latin America.

Just as many Germans were concerned over foreign and Jewish ownership of business and feared a take over, a flood of immigrant and threats at home by terrorists have shaken many Americans. My GOD! Even the Supreme Court has a Latina and a black man ("Uncle Tom" though he may be) trying to destroy the Constitution. Many right wing publications, commentators and religious leaders are quick to scream that "True Christian Americans" are under attack. The "birther" idiocy... is that just a cover to make sure no "Muslim named, African" can ever become president again? The term "Pure Aryan Stock" ring a bell, anyone?

Our airwaves have been taken over by a right wing propaganda machine that spits out such abuse at its opponents and weaves so many fear mongering lies that would give Nazi Propaganda Minster Joseph Goebbels a hard on. The truth is what we tell you, spouts the "Völkischer Beobachter" (for the uninformed, the Nazi Party Paper from 1920-1945) and Fox News (the American Right Wing voice since 1996). Lies become truth, and once debunked, they are kept alive by attacking those who dare to challenge.

The USA is a frustrated country. Frustrated and irate at a government that lied and led the country into an unwinnable and unpopular war. Coffers drained, military might stifled, prestige bruised. It is frustrated by its inept and cruel handling of disastrous hurricane Katrina and its victims. The last administration presided over an historic economic collapse, while the new one went on a spending spree leading to the inevitable crushing debt.

Then today Senate Repub leaders came to Kansas City for "Closed Town Hall Meeting" What the FUCK is that?? Oh yes, A Republican town hall, where all the like minded agree on everything the leaders say. In this meeting, Rep Sen Mc Connell of KY said it was time to start over on healthcare. Sure Sen. McConnell wants to start over on health care. The current versions won't protect the mega profits of the insurance industry that is bankrolling his re-election campaigns and those of his friends. To the tune of 2 million plus In Mc Connell's case.

Isn't is amazing that they can have a "closed door town hall" and think they are getting a "fair and balanced" set of opinions? Oops, I forgot, "fair and balanced" means only the right gets to express an opinion. And the Repub's idea of bi-partisanship is 'do it our way or else we'll whine about it to Rush Limbaugh."

Or have you eliminated.

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