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RightNation.US: Are Comparisons of Obama to Stalin and Hitler Getting out of Hand? - RightNation.US

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My old friend, Tony, thinks so...

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Obama compared to Stalin Lenin and Hitler…Really!!! The comparing of these men who orchestrated the death of millions to Obama is absolutely absurd. To not like the President is the right of any individual but to make such comparisons must come from a place of hate. If one feels that his policies are socialistic then why not compare him to other leaders in history that have those same views but without the blood stains on their resume. Supporters of these comparisons cowardly wear political masks and costumes and play the role of political adversaries to hide the true nature and the roots of their hate. You Haters you can hide behind propaganda, change your costumes a million times, and call it whatever you want but your signature ignorance will always give you away.


I think he's basically right. Whenever any partisan discussion is reduced to comparisons to Hitler or Stalin, no one is really arguing anything substantive. They are merely venting frustration. I will, however, disagree with the notion that it always comes from a place of hate. One can lazily and clumsily throw comparisons around without it being about hate. Sometimes, it's simply cliched rhetoric meant to score some kind of debater's points.

What's more rational in discussing Obama's politics and philosophy is to compare him to Woodrow Wilson, FDR and at the very extreme, Benito Mussolini. Now, I know what you're thinking. "Isn't comparing Obama to Mussolini the same as comparing him to Hitler?" Not really. It would be ignorant to lump Mussolini in with Hitler and Stalin for the same reason it's ignorant to lump Obama in with them. Mussolini was a fascist, but not a Nazi. His regime was nowhere near as obsessed with race and Hitler's, and though it was oppressive, it wasn't nearly as oppressive as either Stalin's or Hitler's. Nor as deadly.

What you have to look at is Mussolini's pre-war domestic agenda and how popular he was with American progressives. To Mussolini, the man who coined the term, totalitarianism wasn't a gray, dystopian vision of jackbooted thugs and thought control. It was a Utopian vision of self-sacrifice, socialism and national cooperation. Where he differed with other European socialists and communists was on the technical aspects of how to achieve it. He disagreed with the Bolsheviks as violently as he disagreed with the capitalists and everyone who didn't stand for his "third way" style of socialism. The bottom line was that under Italian fascism, the state became the end all be all of existence. American progressives, pined for the day when they could attack social problems like poverty and ignorance as proactively as Mussolini.

As a point of comparison, look at the way liberal pundits like Tom Friedman constantly praise China for it's ability to "get things done". Obama himself "has told people that it would be so much easier to be the president of China. As one official put it, 'No one is scrutinizing Hu Jintao’s words in Tahrir Square.'" China is far less communist today and far more like fascist Italy. So, that kind of comparison, while fraught with all kinds of rhetorical dangers, is within the realm of good faith in a rational discussion.

What's completely fair and even crucial is comparing Obama to two of our most controversial progressive presidents, Woodrow Wilson and FDR. His economic policies are nothing more than warmed over New Dealism from FDR which was itself nothing more than warmed over "war socialism" from Wilson. Under both presidents, individual Americans who weren't direct beneficiaries of government interventions and relief found themselves far less free and prosperous than they had been when government was supposedly leaving them to drown. Because they saw the Constitution as an obstacle to overcome, Wilson and FDR greatly expanded the role of the executive branch. It was an outdated document insufficient to answer the needs of a country deep into the industrial era. Life moved faster, so the government needed to move faster.

This is where people tend to get a little crazy. While it's true that Obama is a part of the progressive tradition of expanding executive authority (look at the EPA for just one example), we still have a constitution to slow him down. And it's not until he clearly subverts it with an equivalent to Hitler's Enabling Act, or Stalin's "Yezhovshchina" that comparisons to them make any sense.

And there's a whole lot of Wilson, FDR and even Nixon before that happens. So, while comparisons to Hitler and Stalin aren't appropriate, there's no reason not to warn our liberal brethren about the dangers of left-wing fascism because, to be accurate, fascism in America is left-wing. It has nothing in common with American conservatism or libertarianism. That's an argument both rational and necessary.

My Mind is Clean
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17 Comments On This Entry

No and hell no. The international socialist movement may not be monolithic but all socialists are of the same mind set.
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Did your friend Tony think it was all right to call Pres. Bush Hitler and Stalin? I don't think any President should be referred to as either. Neither Bush or Obama has slaughtered millions of people. I vehemently disagree with Obama's policies, but he hasn't done anything yet that would cause me to call him Hitler. But that is just my opinion, and I could be wrong.
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After 8 years of comparing Bush to Hitler now people have a problem when it's done to Obama? Talk about Hypocrisy... :rolleyes:
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southernsweetie, on 06 May 2012 - 07:27 PM, said:

Did your friend Tony think it was all right to call Pres. Bush Hitler and Stalin? I don't think any President should be referred to as either. Neither Bush or Obama has slaughtered millions of people. I vehemently disagree with Obama's policies, but he hasn't done anything yet that would cause me to call him Hitler. But that is just my opinion, and I could be wrong.

I didn't ask because I don't think he's the kind of person that would support it on his side either. And it would be changing the subject. However, it would be important to note that comparisons of Obama to Hitler take place in the context of how Bush was treated.
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Brah, on 06 May 2012 - 07:52 PM, said:

After 8 years of comparing Bush to Hitler now people have a problem when it's done to Obama? Talk about Hypocrisy... :rolleyes:

You have to understand that not all people are as tuned in to every slight aimed at Bush. To the average Obama supporter, it's possible that a Bush/Hitler sign would seem just as irrational as an Obama/Hitler sign.
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I agree that Tony is basically right. Dennis Miller said it best some years ago when he said, and I forget the exact words but essentially, "NOBODY today is a nazi; not even neo-nazis are nazis".

But if Obama isn't Hitler, is he at least Mussolini? Oh puh-lease, Obama isn't EVEN a Mussolini. Two reasons:

#1 Obama isn't 1/100th the technocrat that Il Duce was. Mussolini at least "made the trains run on time"; I doubt Obama could set up a Tyco train set at christmas without causing a derailmant.

#2 Mussolini was nationalist to the core. Call him every name in the book, but can anyone say with a straight face that Mussolini was anti-Italian? But, Obama vis-a-vis America?

Even though he has totalitarian tendencies, Obama doesn't belong in even the same history book as Mussolini. Nor, for that matter, with second string strongmen like Franco of Spain or Tito of Yugoslavia. To find a comparison to Obama I'd have to scrape the bottom of the barrel of inept minor tinpot communist dictators. Zhivkov of Bulgaria or Hoxha of Albania come to mind. Obama would have to be promoted several paygrades to even be a Ceausescu of Romania.
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Hell no. I put up with references of Bush/Hitler for 8 years. I'm ENJOYING my comparison of Buttcrack to Hitler/Stalin/Lenin/The southern exposure of a northbound horse, and I'm not going to give it up.
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I have the uneasy feeling that history will show that Obama will end up being someone that Hitler and Stalin wanted to be when they grew up.
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Adam Smithee, on 07 May 2012 - 02:51 AM, said:

I agree that Tony is basically right. Dennis Miller said it best some years ago when he said, and I forget the exact words but essentially, "NOBODY today is a nazi; not even neo-nazis are nazis". But if Obama isn't Hitler, is he at least Mussolini? Oh puh-lease, Obama isn't EVEN a Mussolini. Two reasons:#1 Obama isn't 1/100th the technocrat that Il Duce was. Mussolini at least "made the trains run on time"; I doubt Obama could set up a Tyco train set at christmas without causing a derailmant. #2 Mussolini was nationalist to the core. Call him every name in the book, but can anyone say with a straight face that Mussolini was anti-Italian? But, Obama vis-a-vis America?Even though he has totalitarian tendencies, Obama doesn't belong in even the same history book as Mussolini. Nor, for that matter, with second string strongmen like Franco of Spain or Tito of Yugoslavia. To find a comparison to Obama I'd have to scrape the bottom of the barrel of inept minor tinpot communist dictators. Zhivkov of Bulgaria or Hoxha of Albania come to mind. Obama would have to be promoted several paygrades to even be a Ceausescu of Romania.

Who's to say Obama wouldn't be as good at dictatorship? He's got that pesky Constitution keeping him from giving Tom Friedman his happy ending.
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cobalt-blue, on 07 May 2012 - 07:23 AM, said:

Hell no. I put up with references of Bush/Hitler for 8 years. I'm ENJOYING my comparison of Buttcrack to Hitler/Stalin/Lenin/The southern exposure of a northbound horse, and I'm not going to give it up.



A little schadenfreude is understandable as long as that's all it is. It's like Obama eating that dog. I'm not really outraged, but it's funny because his people have been making so much of Romney's dog story.
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Mr. Naron, on 07 May 2012 - 09:20 AM, said:

Who's to say Obama wouldn't be as good at dictatorship? He's got that pesky Constitution keeping him from giving Tom Friedman his happy ending.


Obama just isn't that good at anything. All of his signature accomplishments were mainly just rubber-stamping someone else's heavy lifting. Two words: Bin Laden.
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Adam Smithee, on 07 May 2012 - 05:32 PM, said:

Mr. Naron, on 07 May 2012 - 09:20 AM, said:

Who's to say Obama wouldn't be as good at dictatorship? He's got that pesky Constitution keeping him from giving Tom Friedman his happy ending.
Obama just isn't that good at anything. All of his signature accomplishments were mainly just rubber-stamping someone else's heavy lifting. Two words: Bin Laden.

So, even without constitutional constraints, Obama would be ineffective? I think that's a good thing. I said it when he was elected: the best thing for us if Obama is really as left-wing as he appears is for him to be our most incompetent president ever.
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Mr. Naron, on 07 May 2012 - 07:19 PM, said:

So, even without constitutional constraints, Obama would be ineffective? I think that's a good thing. I said it when he was elected: the best thing for us if Obama is really as left-wing as he appears is for him to be our most incompetent president ever.


Yes. Things are as bad as they are because Obama's a marxist-leninist. Things are ONLY as bad as they are because he's an incompetent marxist-leninist.
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I think it is fair. The leftwingers called Bush Hitler for years. So now that the shoe is on the other foot so to speak, they can't handle the return fire. Well tough sh!t. I know Buttcrack isn't Hitler or Stalin, I just return the fire to liberals to show them how stupid their remarks were in the first place. Paybacks are b!tch aren't they!
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Did President Bush start out his political career in the home of someone who wanted to set up reeducation camps?
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I think it's important to understand WHY we compare any leader to a Hitler / Stalin / Mao / Castro etc. It's important because people have some vague (and I do mean vague) notion of what these leaders were, and they serve as a warning to the people that even the most loved of leaders can become a monster over night (relatively speaking). Remember the Jews voted heavily for Hitler before they were herded into cattle cars and taken off to camps.

Henry A. Wallace explains this much better than I when he wrote:

http://newdeal.feri....llace/haw23.htm

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The obvious types of American fascists are dealt with on the air and in the press. These demagogues and stooges are fronts for others. Dangerous as these people may be, they are not so significant as thousands of other people who have never been mentioned. The really dangerous American fascists are not those who are hooked up directly or indirectly with the Axis. The FBI has its finger on those. The dangerous American fascist is the man who wants to do in the United States in an American way what Hitler did in Germany in a Prussian way. The American fascist would prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels of public information. With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how best to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money or more power.


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<a name="13"> It has been claimed at times that our modern age of technology facilitates dictatorship. What we must understand is that the industries, processes, and inventions created by modern science can be used either to subjugate or liberate. The choice is up to us. The myth of fascist efficiency has deluded many people. It was Mussolini's vaunted claim that he "made the trains run on time." In the end, however, he brought to the Italian people impoverishment and defeat. It was Hitler's claim that he eliminated all unemployment in Germany. Neither is there unemployment in a prison camp.


Remember fascists today whether they call themselves that or not continually tell us that the Constitution as it is written today is not efficient, it's outdated and a waste. We need to streamline government to "get things done" so we can push our nation forward. What they NEVER describe is what they will push our nation forward to nor what things MUST get done now. Our Constitution was intended to force the really hard things off the plate and find the middle ground in all things. We have gone away from that because of some implied getting things done. Ironically the government that had a vast socialist majority never passed a budget during their tenure, because they never wanted to really go onto record about their true intents.

At the end of the day we must understand simply that providing the American voter of a mental picture of people goose-stepping through parades at night is a very very useful tool in explaining to them where the left leaning party wants to take us and eventually where it will ultimately end if we allow it to go there. Does anyone not forget in 2008 when they had that massive stage out there with the columns and all the symbology they used to display his ordained perspective?
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laziter, on 08 May 2012 - 06:03 AM, said:

I think it's important to understand WHY we compare any leader to a Hitler / Stalin / Mao / Castro etc. It's important because people have some vague (and I do mean vague) notion of what these leaders were, and they serve as a warning to the people that even the most loved of leaders can become a monster over night (relatively speaking). Remember the Jews voted heavily for Hitler before they were herded into cattle cars and taken off to camps. Henry A. Wallace explains this much better than I when he wrote:http://newdeal.feri.org/wallace/haw23.htm

Quote

The obvious types of American fascists are dealt with on the air and in the press. These demagogues and stooges are fronts for others. Dangerous as these people may be, they are not so significant as thousands of other people who have never been mentioned. The really dangerous American fascists are not those who are hooked up directly or indirectly with the Axis. The FBI has its finger on those. The dangerous American fascist is the man who wants to do in the United States in an American way what Hitler did in Germany in a Prussian way. The American fascist would prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels of public information. With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how best to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money or more power.

Quote

&lt;a name=&quot;13&quot;&gt; It has been claimed at times that our modern age of technology facilitates dictatorship. What we must understand is that the industries, processes, and inventions created by modern science can be used either to subjugate or liberate. The choice is up to us. The myth of fascist efficiency has deluded many people. It was Mussolini's vaunted claim that he &quot;made the trains run on time.&quot; In the end, however, he brought to the Italian people impoverishment and defeat. It was Hitler's claim that he eliminated all unemployment in Germany. Neither is there unemployment in a prison camp.
Remember fascists today whether they call themselves that or not continually tell us that the Constitution as it is written today is not efficient, it's outdated and a waste. We need to streamline government to &quot;get things done&quot; so we can push our nation forward. What they NEVER describe is what they will push our nation forward to nor what things MUST get done now. Our Constitution was intended to force the really hard things off the plate and find the middle ground in all things. We have gone away from that because of some implied getting things done. Ironically the government that had a vast socialist majority never passed a budget during their tenure, because they never wanted to really go onto record about their true intents. At the end of the day we must understand simply that providing the American voter of a mental picture of people goose-stepping through parades at night is a very very useful tool in explaining to them where the left leaning party wants to take us and eventually where it will ultimately end if we allow it to go there. Does anyone not forget in 2008 when they had that massive stage out there with the columns and all the symbology they used to display his ordained perspective?

All those similarities are legitimate to point out if your point is to clarify who in American politics most resembles a fascist when liberals call conservatives fascists. But it's still silly--even if cathartic--to compare Obama to specific totalitarian dictators like Hitler and Stalin.
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