Friday, February 17, 2017

History of fascism

Like a lot of people, I think, I've been a little cautious about the easy "Trump/Fascist" equation.  It becomes too easily an "We don't like him/he 's on the Right, therefore...." statement.

But worth reading is this Lawyers Guns & Money appreciation of some recent comments by two very solid historians, Timothy Snyder and Richard Evans, both of whom know a lot about those ur-fascists of the 1930s.  Some of the very specific details they offer are, ah, thought-provoking. Evans:
Hitler … did not rule, for example, through a Cabinet. He didn’t use the accepted institutions of government. He had a clique of people around him, Goebbels, Hermann Göring, and so on: a whole group of top Nazis who were his cheerleaders, really. They’re the ones who do the work. Within just a few years, the Cabinet didn’t meet at all. It’s just a very informal way of ruling that of course leads to a lot of chaos, because competencies are not clearly defined and there are a lot of rivalries within Hitler’s group of leading Nazis that prove often counterproductive. It’s interesting there again to see how the civil service, that’s the administration at every level, really, did not provide a very serious resistance to the orders that came down from above.
Image:  from LGM
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