Posts Tagged ‘Weimar Germany’

Fuhrer Bonehill Goes Looking for ‘Good-Looking’ Fascists

March 21, 2015

I found this piece on Hope Not Hate, and it’s about more comedy from the one-man Nazi Blitzkrieg, Joshua Bonehill. It seems the saw dust Duce has decided that the reason people don’t support, vote for and join Fascist parties is because their members are all stereotypically hideous. He has therefore released this advert, urging good-looking Nazis to join his party.

Bonehill Good Looking Fascists

If you can’t read it, it says

Activists

We want to create a force of good-looking, disciplined and effective activists.

The media are ever quick to portray us as thugs, scum and degenerates who care more about a can of beer as opposed to the future of this nation. Fascism was never about thuggery or violence. Fascism was all about caring and loving our folk. The skinhead scene worked well for the 1970s and 1980s, but those days are long since behind us, in order to appeal to a new generation, we have to adopt a new appearance.

To which the good Antifas of Hope Not Hate have added the ironic caption ‘Ever since a good-looking Nazi?’

If you look at many of the photos posted of the Nazis at their marches and protests up and down the country, many of them do resemble exactly the stereotype of the beer-bellied, skinhead thug. Nick Griffin, the former BNP leader, was himself so hideous that Private Eye put his mug on the cover as a ‘Nick Griffin fright mask’ you could make.

But even if the Fascist parties did smarten up their image, and started looking like supermodels and Hollywood stars, people still wouldn’t join them. Why? It’s not that their members are hideous, the entire party and its ideology is.

Fascism was all about thuggery and violence, ever since the Nazis and Fascists squadristi went around looking for Communists, Socialists, trade unionists, democrats and Jews to beat up in Weimar Germany and post-WW I Italy. Nice, gentle people don’t make the symbol of their movement the same clubs they use to bludgeon and beat down their opponents, as the Fascists did their mangonello. They also don’t sing songs about racial violence ending with the refrain, ‘Til the Jew lies bleeding at our feet’.

They also don’t engage in war crimes and perpetrate genocides so horrific that they have become the very byword and image of evil for the generations after them.

And the thuggery didn’t stop with the Second World War. It carried on in the post-War years, when one section of the NF deliberately recruited football hooligans and boot boys to attack Blacks, Asians and left-wingers. There is even TV footage of Martin Webster, the NF’s Fuhrer, blandly stating that ‘we are looking for robust young men to protect the country from Communism.’ This didn’t sound at all peaceful. Nor was it meant to be.

Actually, Bonehill’s appeal to find ‘good-looking’ Fascists could prove highly embarrassing, especially after his hilarious phone-in to Christo’s late night show on LBC talking about anal sex. For all their vicious hatred of homosexuals, a sizable proportion of the NF was gay. The head of the BNP before Nick Griffin was gay, and actually had it written into the party’s constitution that it recognised the right of people to enjoy the company of whoever they chose. In the 1980s the head and founder of the British Movement split off from the NF, sneering at them as ‘the gay NF’.

And apart from that, Hope Not Hate reported a little while ago a series of sex scandals in the BNP, with members betraying their partners with other stormtroopers and their partners. There was even a description of the mess left over from some of their more orgiastic meetings in the 1980s.

Bonehill probably won’t recruit many good-looking people. But he might have a few of the other Fascists querying his motives for doing so.

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Letter from Australia about the Conservatives Down Under: Exactly Like Their Brit Counterparts

March 24, 2014

I received this kind comment from Gathering Swallows on my post ‘Explaining the Coalition’s War on the Poor and Disabled’, remarking on the similarities of the policies pursued by the National Party in Oz and the Conservatives over here:

I had been following UK politics for quite sometime prior to the Aust elections last year. I couldn’t believe what I was reading out of the UK. Then it started being applied here to my absolute horror. The worst thing about the way Abbott has been introducing these similar sorts of policies is that he didn’t announce any of his policy intentions prior or during the election campaign. He counted on people being sick of Labor, many shenanigans he himself incited with the help of his mainstream media buddies. His hit list, as we have come to realise, was buried in a document by the IPA (Institute of Public Affairs, Australia) outlining a 75 point plan to dismantle just about anything progressive in this country. On the matter of the disabled (although this next comment was in relation to racial things but I extrapolate for obvious reasons…), today, our Attorney General stated that it was OK to be a bigot. That’s right – it sends a wonderful message (not) that vilifying the least fortunate will be fair game. Thanks for your blog.

The similarity between Abbott’s approach to politics, and that of David Cameron is obvious. Cameron’s government also disguised its true intentions in order to win power. In the case of the Tories in Britain, they appeared to be more Left-wing than Labour. Philip Blond’s book, Red Tory, even cites Kropotkin, the 19th century anarchist, approvingly.

I’ve remarked on the way Conservatives across the English speaking world, from America, Canada, Britain, and now, it seems, Australia, adopted the same strategies, rhetoric and targets in their campaigns. You can see it in the way the Daily Mail in Britain started attacking public sector workers for supposedly being overpaid a few years ago. This followed a similar campaign of vilification by the Republicans in America. And Amnesiaclinic, one of the other commenters on this blog, has also told me that the same policies are being pursued in Canada after Harper’s regime.

As for Oz’s Attorney-General now telling everyone that it’s okay to be a bigot, there are sections of the British Tory party that would heartily agree with that. The Daily Mail for years has carried a campaign against the ‘race relations’ industry and what it sees as the erosion of free speech by the laws against incitement to racial hatred. They raised a particularly bitter campaign against them when Labour was in power, despite the fact the laws themselves were passed way back in the mid-1960s in order to undermine the rapid growth of the National Front. And the NF back then was truly frightening. It engaged in paramilitary training, and other sections of the racist fringe were openly Nazi, like the National Socialist Movement. One of these groups was involved in attacks on five synagogues, as well as street clashes with Blacks and Jews. I’ve also noticed that the Tories in Canada are also leading a campaign against the same laws there.

Part of the argument against the laws against racist speech is that these laws didn’t work when they were first introduced in Weimar Germany. The argument is that the German government had passed legislation outlawing the vilification of ethnic groups, like Jews, and pursued a vigorous policy of prosecution. This did not, however, prevent the Nazis from entering government and finally seizing power in 1933.

The issues in Weimar Germany, however, isn’t as clear cut as the argument suggests. Firstly, it shows just how difficult combatting an aggressively racist Right was in the political climate of the time. The parliamentary system in Weimar Germany was vulnerable because to many Germans it was the product of their defeat in the First World War. However, despite increasing anti-Semitism, the Nazis’ seizure of power was by no means assured. For much of the 1920s the party received only a trivial number of votes. They made their major electoral breakthrough by exploiting an agricultural crisis in Schleswig-Holstein, and their entry into government was greatly assisted by the Wall Street Crash and consequent global recession. They were also invited into government at the end of the decade in order to provide support for a coalition of Right-wing parties after the party system had more or less broken down with some of the major Weimar parties refusing to work with each other, but having no overall support to govern alone. Hitler also tailored his rhetoric to appeal to certain groups, stressing different elements and playing down others in the particular areas where he was campaigning at the time. And finally, you cannot tell what would have happened if the Weimar government had been more lax about racism and anti-Semitic vilification. Would the Nazis have come to power earlier if such vilification had been far more legally acceptable?

Aside from this particular issue, there is the wider point that the Conservatives across the globe are copying from each other in order to seize power and drive everything back into the worst aspects of the 19th century. The Left also needs to do this – to learn what they’re doing, and challenge them across the globe as well. And together we can defeat them in Britain, Australia, Canada, America or wherever. It’s just a case of ‘thinking globally, and acting locally’.