How socialism caused World War II

I was just recently informed, via Tomaž Štih, of Götz Aly's book Hitler's Beneficiaries. The original German title of this book was Hitler's People's State, and it analyzes in detail Hitler's economy before, as well as during World War II. There's a Spiegel review here.

Apparently, this book makes a compelling case that the entirety of the German war effort existed to finance German socialism. The Nazi party was, of course, a socialist party - its full name was the National Socialist German Workers' Party. But it turns out that apparently, the wars and the socialism weren't related just coincidentally. Hitler was a great social redistributor; the ultimate Robin Hood, in fact - in terms of taking from the rich and giving to the poor. His social state was financed first by confiscating the property of Jews in Germany. But eventually, this source of funding ran out, and the social system required funding. Hitler's choices at that point, then, were either to let the socialist regime collapse, or... obtain funding from neighbors. The subsequent invasions were not only self-funded from what was taken from the occupied regimes - they actually helped the Reich avoid bankruptcy it would otherwise had faced.

Tomaž makes the interesting observation that, time and again, history unfolds as follows:
  1. To gain popular support, leaders distribute treats to the deluded masses by tapping an unsustainable source.
  2. The masses get used to those treats.
  3. When treats can no longer continue, two problems arise:
    1. The masses do not wish to accept that they were deluded, or that it's no longer possible for them to get treats.
    2. The leaders who caused the problem blame a third person, who becomes the victim.
I find it amazing that I never managed to see this pattern with World War II. Yet now that I do, it is striking how time and time again, the world revolves around this same old pattern: enjoying too much in the present, and paying for it later on. Not just on the macro scale, even people's individual lives revolve around the same unthinking paradigm: spend, broke, spend, broke; eat, diet, eat, diet.

If at least people were conscious of this process as it goes on. But it is the denial that makes it possible in the first place. And the denial is what, for me, makes observing it the most painful.


Anonymous said…
welcome back! missed your blog
denis bider said…
Thank you!

I've been posting less frequently because it seems that I've already written extensively enough about my major ideas, and I don't feel great just regurgitating links to news articles on BBC. These days, I mostly post such links on Facebook, and post here those things that seem original or relevant enough.
Bettie said…
Socialists do not want to hear about God ruling on earth that would mean they would have to give up the sins they love so much. now that is a classic don, they live for the sins.

denis bider said…
Bettie, no offense, but I do believe that religion is crazy - crazier than socialism, and a more harmful phenomenon.

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