Dealing with the usual tactics of the nation’s Socialist-Left in their denial of historical fact.
Part I of this 2 part series presented just some of the historical facts of the case. In the interest of ‘fairness’, Part II will present and eviscerate the usual tactics and talking points of the nation’s socialist-left on this subject. Please excuse the excessive length of the article, but the left has many issues here that need to be addressed.
In one regard, this might seem to be a trivial issue since the National Socialist German Workers’ Party [Nazi’s] only existed for a mercifully short time over 70 years ago. However, the tactics used to deny the history of this socialist nation are still being used to try revising history while it is being written with the socialist nation of Venezuela. The nation’s socialist-left also persists in trying to invoke it’s false history labeling some on the pro-liberty right with the ‘Nazi’ pejorative.
Headlines that present opinion as fact in a one-line editorial
We begin with a recent piece that is typical of leftist methodologies from Vox. Note that this is the same leftist-socialist media source with one founder that reveled in being very effective in misleading people.
The author of this piece begins masquerading opinion as fact with a careful construction of the headline:
With the subhead:
A Republican representative described Adolf Hitler as a socialist and compared Democrats to Nazis. Sadly, Rep. Brooks is far from alone in his opinions.
Then she uses the tried and true technique of ‘burying the lede’ before getting to the ‘factual’ part that supposedly backs up her opinion presented in the headline. As is usually the case with these ‘debunking’ opinion pieces there is a great deal padding in the presentation with extraneous background information before setting up her later conclusions. Along the way she throws in a word or two, to subtly reinforce the opinion she presented in the headline with the arrogant presumption that it was bolstered by facts. Then to hammer the point home she uses a word that closely verges into the realm of ridicule with a statement dripping with disdain:
But one of their core assumptions — “Nazis were socialists” — has become one of the biggest memes within a swath of the American Right. And it is woefully, almost hilariously incorrect.
Please note the subtle switch in the issue under discussion, from this question being applied to Hitler to a generalized assertion. Then to appear to ‘fact check’ the assertion – and bury the lede even further- the author goes through a history lesson detailing the neutral historic facts on the issue to lend an air of legitimacy to the proceedings.
During this process, she uses one of the Left’s favorite tactics in attacking – or as they term it ‘fact checking’ – assertions made by the pro-liberty right. This is the tactic of finding a subtle or minor error present in the item they are attacking as a way of discrediting everything else being presented. In this case exploiting Representative Rep. Brooks ‘error’ in stating that:
“Who is this big lie master? That quote was in 1925 by a member of Germany’s National Socialist German Workers’ Party—that’s right, Germany’s socialist party—more commonly known as the Nazis. The author was socialist Adolf Hitler, in his book Mein Kampf.”
The good Representative most assuredly meant this in a colloquial sense, but it was an ‘error’ hence the likelihood that she directly quoted him to correct him later cast a pale of illegitimacy on everything else he said. Then in the middle of her offering of the historical facts she slips in her opinion in the matter. Directly asserting that despite the name that Adolf Hitler was not a socialist.
But despite joining what would be called the “National Socialist” German workers’ party, Adolf Hitler was not a socialist. Far from it.
Please note the authors use of “scare quotes” around the words “National Socialist” leaving out the inclusion of workers’ in the party name. Also, note that she conveniently switches back to a narrow focus after implying this was to be a more generalized discussion.
There is a very important reason for this subtle focus, the very name of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party has always been very problematic for the nation’s socialist-left. Thus they have developed very careful techniques to mitigate this historical fact, that will be the subject of the next section. In the case of this piece, the purpose of switching the focus back and forth between a narrow focus on Hitler and a generalized discussion is to help ‘prove’ the one line editorial in the headline.
Ostensibly keeping the discussion on Hitler gave the author the leeway to argue that discussions of the nature of socialism somehow ‘prove’ Hitler wasn’t a socialist. It also allowed the author to talk of left-wing elements of the party in these discussions while maintaining the generalized assertion that the party wasn’t Left-wing.
Surrogate names to deny the basic facts of history
As they try to deny that socialist nations were or are socialist, the lseft has to deny or dismiss historical facts in order to do so. This is just the beginning of their journey of denial, but it’s the toughest since most people understand that the name of an organization speaks volumes about it true character. Thus, they have to avoid mentioning these names, going to great lengths in their efforts to the point of trying to suppress speech that verges on the truth of the matter.
The most infamous being the use of the word ‘Nazi’, this, of course, an abbreviation of the name: Nationalsozialistische [deutsche Arbeiter-Partei] translated as National Socialist [German Workers’ Party]. There are others, but the particulars of this case illustrate the point.
Leftists explaining away the word socialist in National Socialist German Workers’ Party
The historical fact that they had Socialist and Workers’ Party is very problematic to the Left, necessitating some very careful ‘progressions’ in dealing with the issue. In most cases, they will prepare the field of debate in trying to gloss over this very damaging historic fact to their assertion.
This was usually done with a tactical trio of presumed correctness, ad hominem attacks, and circular logic. They simply presume that their historically contravening assertion is correct without question. Then they attack those who dare point out these facts with childish invective or false assertions as to one’s intelligence level. All of this tied together with circular logic.
The wording and levels of childishness depend upon the ‘intellectual level’ of the leftist media source promulgating these articles. The ‘Snopes’ article begins this process with an almost subliminal implication in the subhead of the article:
Were the Nazis Socialists?
We look into the burning (at least for some) question of whether members of the National German Socialist Workers’ Party were accurately classified as “socialists”.
Note the ‘at least for some’ and the “scare” quotes around the “socialists”
Further on in the piece the begins with the spin:
According to historians, the complicated moniker reveals more about the image the party wanted to project and the constituency it aimed to build than it did about the Nazis’ true political goals, which were building a state based on racial superiority and brute-force governance.
This is a subtle version of the ad hoc rescue technique by which authoritarian tendencies of the socialist-left somehow prove that it wasn’t socialism because somehow that isn’t ‘really’ socialism.
Given that Nazism is traditionally held to be an extreme right-wing ideology, the party’s conspicuous use of the term “socialist” — which refers to a political system normally plotted on the far-left end of the ideological spectrum — has long been a source of confusion, not to mention heated debate among partisans seeking to distance themselves from the genocidal taint of Nazi Germany.
Note that they fail to explain why ‘Nazism is traditionally held to be an extreme right-wing ideology’ they simply state this ‘without evidence’ as the saying goes. This is often the case, where certain inconvenient facts are slipped past the reader, presumably to be accepted without question.
In other sites of lower prominence, the subtleties are discarded while the same tactics are maintained. Some Leftists simply assert that ‘nonsense is nonsense’, dismissing basic historical facts while combining all three tactics in one neat phrase. This process is done to prepare the reader for a nonfactual dismissal of the name of the organisation.
Having prepared the battlefield with the usual methods, Leftists will either gloss over the label as ‘just a word’. Alternatively, they will use little evasions and talking points to deflect the conversation, such as the ever-irrelevant ‘North Korea’ dodge. Making claims that the word just happened to be very popular at the time and so it was used despite their not being socialist or something.
Refuting the ever-irrelevant ‘North Korea’ dodge
One of the most infamous and completely irrelevant red herrings in these discussions is the ‘North Korea’ dodge. Somehow the name of that particular nation makes all the difference because reasons. The problem for the left is that there are other national monikers are true to a country’s characteristics:
- The Principality of Andorra
- The Cook Islands
- The State of Eritrea
- The State of Israel
- The United Mexican States
- Independent State of Papua New Guinea
- The Independent State of Samoa
- The Swiss Confederation
- The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
- The United States of America
Everyone is supposed to ignore these facts to instead dwell on the official names of one or two nations to distract from the subject under consideration. The fact is the irrelevant ‘North Korea’ dodge doesn’t prove anything, but the nation’s socialist-left has to fall back on it since it doesn’t have anything else.
Leftists explaining away the use of the term Workers’ in National Socialist German Workers’ Party
This is even more damaging to their case in combination with the word socialist. In most cases, leftists will completely ignore this part in hopes that no one will notice. As was mentioned before, in the Vox article the workers part of the name was quietly ignored. In a classic case of misdirection, they tend to emphasize the ‘national’ part of the name as though it magically transforms the meaning of the word socialist. Again, this issue also highlights the reason that the nation’s Socialist-Left prefers to use the terms ‘Nazi’ instead of the full name. It keeps both words ‘socialist’ and ‘workers’ out of the discussion.
Dealing with Leftists lies and evasions over basic historical facts
The first step is to question their presumptions. Why is it presumed that they are correct given that their asseverations that defy basic reality? They can try to dismiss what is extremely problematic for their cause, but it is a historical fact that the Nazis were a National Socialist [German Workers’ Party]. It’s not as though that German Workers’ Party obtained a great deal with the Berlin stationery store for letterhead so it wouldn’t be cost-effective to change it. This was the name they used for the life span of the party, the words socialist and workers’ succinctly stated important aspects of their inherent beliefs.
It’s part and parcel to having to put up with Leftist ad hominem attacks and childish insults. But this means they are lacking in an intellectual argument. This was best summed up by Margaret Thatcher:
In my work, you get used to criticisms. Of course, you do, because there are a lot of people trying to get you down, but I always cheer up immensely if one is particularly wounding because I think well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left. That is why my father always taught me: never worry about anyone who attacks you personally; it means their arguments carry no weight and they know it.
Margaret Thatcher, interview with Enzo Biagi, Mar. 10, 1986
The Left doesn’t have a defense for these facts of history, so they have to go on offense. But they won’t be able to mount an intellectual case for these facts because there have none.
One will also note that Leftist loves to follow the maxim from W. C. Fields: “If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull.” The leftist genre here entails the padding of arguments to merely support the one line editorial as exemplified by the two examples cited in this discussion.
Defeating the double-lie tactic
In our efforts to cover most of the prominent methods, we need to mention one that they try to use in proving that a Far-Left National Socialist Worker’s party was somehow ‘right-wing’. For want of a better name, this is the double lie technique whereby the pro-liberty right is falsely accused of a characteristic endemic of the Left as a way of ‘proving’ the opposite.
One of the best examples is the parroting of the lie that everyone on the pro-liberty right is racist. The left then uses this lie to forward a false equivalence with that far-left National Socialist Worker’s Party as a way of ‘proving’ they were ‘right-wing’.
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” Martin Luther King
Knocking down the first lie is the best defense against this type of attack. One only needs to recall the words of Martin Luther King, on judging people on the content of their character instead of the color of their skin. Recalling that it’s the nation’s Socialist-Left that dwells in identitarian politics.
Refuting the rivalry talking point
This is the absurd idea that rivals of the same ideology competing for power somehow ‘proves’ that one is not of that ideology. In reality, this doesn’t prove anything since tyrants will often compete to enslave people. There are plenty of cases of authoritarian leftists going after authoritarian leftists. There were conflicts between the various factions of socialists in the old Soviet Union, does that mean they weren’t socialist?
Consider the rivalry between the old USSR and communist China or communist China with communist Vietnam or communist Vietnam with communist Cambodia. Do these rivalries magically convert one or both into being non-socialist? Alternatively, there is the rivalry between different factions of Islam; do these rivalries magically convert one or both into being non-Muslim?
In the case of the particular National Socialist Worker’s Party in question, at one point they co-operated with another group of socialists – the USSR. Did they magically change ideologies during this time period? That fact that different factions are rivalrous proves nothing in the debate, however, this doesn’t stop leftist from bringing up this tired talking point.
Refuting the National Socialist German Workers’ Party banned trade unions talking point
This is another fact the nation’s socialist-left loves to trot out, but as with the rivalry talking point, this also fails to prove the case since there are other examples of socialists banning trade unions. Again, this is as yet another example of the tactic of the nation’s socialist-left creating false criteria unrelated to whether or not a national government is socialist.
The prime example would be Solidarity [Polish Solidarność], a Polish trade union formed in 1980 in Poland and what was part of the Warsaw Pact, the Polish government in December 1981 forcibly suppressed it. But then again, leftist also like to claim that socialism has never been tried before, therefore they might claim that this proves that the Soyuz Sovetskikh Sotsialisticheskikh Respublik and the rest of the Warsaw Pact weren’t really socialist as well.
Refuting the Ad Hoc rescue: ‘socialists acting like socialists means they aren’t socialists’
This last one uses the after the fact presumption that since the definition of socialism doesn’t mention concentration camps, secret police or the suspension of liberty. The lie here is that somehow that those nations that engage in these tactics to suppress dissent aren’t really socialist.
The problem for the nation’s socialist-left in forwarding this presumption is that their base ideology is predicated on wealth redistribution. Even though he was late to the party in the development of socialism, Karl Marx did contribute one little ditty to the ‘intellectual’ foundation of the ideology. This was, of course, the infamous: “From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.”
Socialists attain power by making all manner of promises that require the taking of other people’s money to fund their schemes. The numbers never work out for this, but that isn’t the point. The purpose here is to entice people into voting for free college, free housing, free food, free healthcare and even free money. Never mind that these farcical promises can never be fulfilled.
It takes coercion to even try to fulfill these impossible promises, necessitating the need for the people to be disarmed, a secret police apparatus, concentration camp system as well as the suppression of all Civil Liberties.
The bottom line is that socialist nations require repression, thus what took place in Nazi Germany, the USSR and even today with the socialist nation of Venezuela are all a result of socialism’s basic precepts.
The underlying mythology of this subject is that somehow National Socialist Workers’ Party was somehow ‘rightwing’. The nation’s socialist-left still vehemently persist in trying to foment this two for one special in the wholesale rewriting of history. This historical sleight of hand requires a two-fold lie that said National Socialist Workers’ Party wasn’t the case. As well as the even more extraordinary lie that they were the exact opposite of their name, that somehow the word ‘national’ is some magical elixir that turns left into right.
The fact is, no matter the false spin and lies, a nation with an authoritarian edict is antithetical to pro-liberty right precepts of limited government and individual liberty. Authoritarianism is and always will be a left-wing precept, denying that is akin to denying reality.
- The Big Lie: Exposing the Nazi Roots of the American Left
- Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, from Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning
- Yes, Virginia: Hitler really was a socialist
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