McCaskill aide: Tea Parties kind of remind me of Nazi brownshirts

posted at 8:48 am on June 29, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

There are so many references to Nazis these days that it sounds like we’re in the middle of a remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark. This latest declaration is every bit as historically illiterate as all of the others, which seems to certify that American public education does a lousy job of teaching even recent history.  Bob Burns is seen here in this video presented by 24th State (via Dan Riehl and Jim Hoft) holding forth as Senator Claire McCaskill’s field representative on the commonalities between the Tea Party and the Nazi brownshirts, which seem to begin and end with the fact that both held assemblies:

McCaskill wasted no time in apologizing for her historically-illiterate staff:

The comments, caught on video supplied by the site 24th State, were made by McCaskill field representative Bob Burns.

Though the date of the video is unclear, Burns is apparently talking to a room full of health care supporters about Tea Party, or Tea Party-like, activists.

“Someone said ‘brownshirts’…People got offended with that,” Burns said. “But if you look at history, when Hitler took over Germany, he did it just that way: disrupting meetings, screaming — and then it got violent. But they were always a minority.”

On Friday, a day after the video was posted on 24th State, McCaskill’s office e-mailed an apology to the blog author, which was also posted.

Maybe Burns should look again at history, and this time try paying attention.  He can start with American history, and learn about town halls, where people often spoke in opposition to the policies of elected officials (and still do, for that matter).  Public dissent has a long and storied tradition here in the United States, which is treasured by the people and feared by fools in power.

Let’s not pretend that it’s the Left making all of the Nazi analogies, though.  They make plenty of them in regards to the Tea Party, but a few people on the Right haven’t been shy about drawing analogies between Barack Obama and the Nazis, either.  As St. Louis Today remarks, the analogies wind up proving not that we’re on the verge of Nazification but that the speaker is on the verge of exposing himself as an historical illiterate.  Instead of learning about what the Nazis really were, it seems that most people just stick with the Raiders of the Lost Ark version.  Before making any Nazi analogies, people should try reading William Shirer’s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, still the seminal history of the era.

Until then, let’s just proclaim a blanket application of Godwin’s Law and stick to the facts at hand.


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“Where socialism sought totalitarian control of a society’s economic processes through direct state operation of the means of production, fascism sought that control indirectly, through domination of nominally private owners…. In doing all this, fascism denatured the marketplace. Entrepreneurship was abolished. State ministries, rather than consumers, determined what was produced and under what conditions.”
rspock on June 29, 2010 at 1:08 PM

If you skip to the end, the (pardon the expression) “bottom line” is always the same.

Collectivism is totalitarianism. The exact PATH taken to get there is always different. Nazi Germany; Soviet Russia; Maoist China; etc., etc., etc….

But the end result is always the same – except for a few residual catch-phrases. If Obama’s “fundamental transformation” is successful, the word “Constitution” will be used synonymously with terms like “Economic Justice” and “from each according to his abiilites…”

logis on June 29, 2010 at 1:17 PM

spock on June 29, 2010 at 1:08 PM

Under whatever guise, the result is totalitarianism, total government control.

docdave on June 29, 2010 at 1:20 PM

This is exactly what I have believed from the beginning. Look at this and pass it on – I’m SERIOUS! We are at war with people like Obama and fools like McCaskill and Burns. This is not a trivial request – our very survival is on the line:
http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/overwhelm.asp

We need to act on this nationally. If you care, read this also:
http://www.rense.com/general32/americ.htm

LarryG on June 29, 2010 at 1:37 PM

She’s up (and probably done) in 2012, along with Ben Nelson (in Oklahoma).

molonlabe28 on June 29, 2010 at 1:55 PM

People have problems with Hitler because of what he did in the war. Up until that time how was he truly different than Mussolini/Castro/Chavez?

chemman on June 29, 2010 at 10:28 AM

The first concentration camp was opened several years before the war. Does that answer your question?

angryed on June 29, 2010 at 2:13 PM

If you are tired of defending Sanger, you may cease at any time.

“[Slavs, Latin, and Hebrew immigrants are] human weeds … a
deadweight of human waste … [Blacks, soldiers, and Jews are a] menace to the race.”
“Eugenic sterilization is an urgent need … We must prevent
Multiplication of this bad stock.”
– Margaret Sanger, April 1933 Birth Control Review

rukiddingme on June 29, 2010 at 12:30 PM

When I say that the Pro-Life movement lies about Margaret Sanger, rukiddingme’s lies above are but one example. The last quote rukiddingme provides is by Ernst Rudin, a Nazi, in the Birth Control Review, April 1933. Of course, no editor agrees with everything written in their magazine. Sanger wrote to Edith How-Martyn on May 21, 1933 that “All the news from Germany is sad & horrible, and to me more dangerous than any other war going on any where because it has so many good people who applaud the atrocities & claim its right. The sudden antagonism in Germany against the Jews & the vitriolic hatred of them is spreading underground here & is far more dangerous than the aggressive policy of the Japanese in Manchuria.”

The rest of the words that rukiddingme quotes seem to be some odd melange of the best “Pro-Life” lies about Sanger. They are not the April 1933 Birth Control Review. Some of the words out of the brackets in the first set of words, “a deadweight of human waste”, come from “The Pivot of Civilization”. Those words clearly are not being used in the manner suggested by the words in brackets. The context is Sanger denouncing philanthropists who encourage impoverished large families to have even more children. In fact, there is no implication in the entire chapter in which the quote occurs of any race being inferior (except possibly the Chinese, but that would be arguable and isn’t the list). Thus, whichever “Pro-Lifer” added those words in bracket to the Margaret Sanger quote knowingly and willingly lied. The “human weeds” part of the quote probably comes from “Colored people are like human weeds and are to be exterminated” which is a quote made up by the Life Education and Resource Network (LEARN) to slander Margaret Sanger.

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

Hmmm.

@ Ed Morrissey

“but a few people on the Right haven’t been shy about drawing analogies between Barack Obama and the Nazis, either. As St. Louis Today remarks, the analogies wind up proving not that we’re on the verge of Nazification but that the speaker is on the verge of exposing himself as an historical illiterate.”

Who is “historical illiterate”?

Excuse me?

I think you have to revisit this and take the f-ing blinders off. Frankly a lot of what you write is trite tripe and hardly worth responding to. But in this instance you’ve really outdone yourself.

Obama isn’t just a hard-core socialist. He has also shown himself as a facist. Perhaps not quite on a Nazi schtick, but certainly he has commonalities with Mussolini.

And if you can see that. Then that’s your problem.

memomachine on June 29, 2010 at 4:10 PM

When I say that the Pro-Life movement lies about Margaret Sanger, rukiddingme’s lies above are but one example. The last quote rukiddingme provides is by Ernst Rudin, a Nazi, in the Birth Control Review, April 1933. Of course, no editor agrees with everything written in their magazine.

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

My statement is imprecise. I had assumed that given this misattribution of Rubin’s statement to Sanger is so common in “Pro-Life” literature that Sanger would still have been the editor of the Birth Control Review in 1933. At least then, there would be some relation between Sanger and the statement. In fact, she resigned as editor in 1929 and no longer had any affiliation with the Birth Control Review.

I again want to bring up that commandment that says something about “bearing false witness against your neighbor.”

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 4:42 PM

Obama isn’t just a hard-core socialist. He has also shown himself as a facist. Perhaps not quite on a Nazi schtick, but certainly he has commonalities with Mussolini.

And if you can see that. Then that’s your problem.

memomachine on June 29, 2010 at 4:10 PM

Well, Torquemada has commonalities with St. Francis of Assisi, but they probably aren’t of interest to us when discussing the two of them. The issue with calling Obama fascist is that fascism is characterized by appeals to nationalism. And we know Obama thinks patriotism is silly and right-wing.

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 4:53 PM

Instead of learning about what the Nazis really were, it seems that most people just stick with the Raiders of the Lost Ark version

I’m withholding judgment until we find out if Nancy Pelosi’s botox melts at the end of the movie.

malclave on June 29, 2010 at 4:54 PM

Don’t even have to read the article….

Look for the purple shirts!

hoakie on June 29, 2010 at 5:18 PM

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

Careful, you may find me guilty of sloppy research, but these quotes are not my lies. I will not use this source again.

However, coming from the one that justifies racism because it was popular, you have made the issue personal by calling me a liar.

I have taken time to find an even more credible source.

Margaret Sanger in her own words:

Organized charity itself is the symptom of a malignant social disease. Those vast, complex, interrelated organizations aiming to control and to diminish the spread of misery and destitution and all the menacing evils that spring out of this sinisterly fertile soil, are the surest sign that our civilization has bred, is breeding and perpetuating constantly increasing numbers of defectives, delinquents and dependents.

Margaret Sanger, The Pivot of Civilization (New York: Brentano’s, 1922), 108.

It [charity] encourages the healthier and more normal sections of the world to shoulder the burden of unthinking and indiscriminate fecundity of others; which brings with it, as I think the reader must agree, a dead weight of human waste. Instead of decreasing and aiming to eliminate the stocks that are most detrimental to the future of the race and the world, it tends to render them to a menacing degree dominant.

Margaret Sanger, The Pivot of Civilization (New York: Brentano’s, 1922), 116-117.

The most serious charge that can be brought against modern “benevolence” is that it encourages the perpetuation of defectives, delinquents and dependents. These are the most dangerous elements in the world community, the most devastating curse on human progress and expression.

Margaret Sanger, The Pivot of Civilization (New York: Brentano’s, 1922), 123.

The minister’s work is also important and he should be trained, perhaps by the Federation as to our ideals and the goal that we hope to reach. We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.

Letter from Sanger to Dr. Clarence J Gamble, 10 December 1939, MSCLC

I again want to bring up that commandment that says something about “bearing false witness against your neighbor.”
thuja on June 29, 2010 at 4:42 PM

I call heaven and earth today to witness against you: I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live,

Deuteronomy 30:19

rukiddingme on June 29, 2010 at 5:29 PM

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

Careful, you may find me guilty of sloppy research, but the posted statements are not my lies, nor were they manufactured by me. I will no longer use that source.

However, since you have made the issue personal by calling me a liar and that allegation comes from the mouth of one who justifies racism because it was popular at the time, I have taken time to find an even more credible source.

Margaret Sanger in her own words:

Organized charity itself is the symptom of a malignant social disease. Those vast, complex, interrelated organizations aiming to control and to diminish the spread of misery and destitution and all the menacing evils that spring out of this sinisterly fertile soil, are the surest sign that our civilization has bred, is breeding and perpetuating constantly increasing numbers of defectives, delinquents and dependents.
Margaret Sanger, The Pivot of Civilization (New York: Brentano’s, 1922), 108.

It [charity] encourages the healthier and more normal sections of the world to shoulder the burden of unthinking and indiscriminate fecundity of others; which brings with it, as I think the reader must agree, a dead weight of human waste. Instead of decreasing and aiming to eliminate the stocks that are most detrimental to the future of the race and the world, it tends to render them to a menacing degree dominant

Margaret Sanger, The Pivot of Civilization (New York: Brentano’s, 1922), 116-117.

The most serious charge that can be brought against modern “benevolence” is that it encourages the perpetuation of defectives, delinquents and dependents. These are the most dangerous elements in the world community, the most devastating curse on human progress and expression.

Margaret Sanger, The Pivot of Civilization (New York: Brentano’s, 1922), 123.

The minister’s work is also important and he should be trained, perhaps by the Federation as to our ideals and the goal that we hope to reach. We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Nxxxx population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.

Letter from Sanger to Dr Clarence J Gamble, 10 December 1939.

I again want to bring up that commandment that says something about “bearing false witness against your neighbor.”
thuja on June 29, 2010 at 4:42 PM

Ditto.

I call heaven and earth today to witness against you: I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live
Deuteronomy 30:19

****apologies to HA if this double posts, the first attempt to post has vanished****

rukiddingme on June 29, 2010 at 6:50 PM

However, coming from the one that justifies racism because it was popular, you have made the issue personal by calling me a liar.

Now you are simply lying about me. I pointed out a historical fact about the time. That doesn’t constitute approval anymore than if pointed out the Spanish Catholics killed Native American babies in South America, it means that I approve of their murders.

I’m not sure that I called you a “liar”. I try avoid using the word. Maybe I said something rash in the heat of the moment. Please quote me if I did. I want to know if I use a word that I had hoped I had eliminated from my vocabulary.
I do think when people repeat lies as you have done (and admitted having done, to your credit) that they are lying. I think we all lie from time to time. The big moral issue we face with most lying isn’t that we lie. It’s the refusal to quit lying. (Of course, there is lying which makes a difference like perjury in a courtroom in which a single lie is evil.)
In the end I want to be nice enough to you that you can accept the real Margaret Sanger wasn’t an evil woman. Her racism was far milder than what was prevalent at the time she lived. It’s totally unfair to judge Sanger on a completely different scale relative to racism than everyone else who lived when she did. I’m not asking you to change your values about abortion. I don’t agree with them, but they aren’t wrong given your premises. I’m just asking you to not bear false witness against Sanger.

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 10:26 PM

McCaskill is a fool’s fool. The penultimate Midwestern Hank capsize Johnson. Idiot union democrats in MO reflexively pulled the lever for democrats for decades here. MO is a crap state for industry and a crap state for jobs now.

GOOD JOB!

Inanemergencydial on June 29, 2010 at 10:46 PM

thuja on June 29, 2010 at 10:26 PM

It is interesting that you have not refuted the four additional quotes just provided. Your silence to them indicates the words are, in fact, accurate.

I’m not sure that I called you a “liar”. I try avoid using the word. … Please quote me if I did.

Ask and ye shall receive:

rukiddingme’s lies….. thuja on June 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

Now you are simply lying about me….. thuja on June 29, 2010 at 10:26 PM

You are not sure that you called me a liar and try to avoid using that word, yet twice you have stated that I am lying.

In the end I want to be nice enough to you that you can accept the real Margaret Sanger wasn’t an evil woman. Her racism was far milder than what was prevalent at the time she lived.

You ask that she not be considered evil, then readily admit to her racism. That her racism may or may not have been far milder than what was prevalent at the time is irrelevant.

Racism is evil.

With your help, I am now convinced the words racist and evil are applicable descriptions of Margaret Sanger.

Thank you for your help.

rukiddingme on June 30, 2010 at 12:27 AM

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