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Living with Schizoaffective Disorder

"I See Pitchforks"

Those of us who do study history are forever condemned to dwell in sorrow
because we understand all too well just why history had to be the way it actually was.

Michael David Crawford, Baritone,
mdcrawford@gmail.com

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Nick Hanauer once sold feather pillows to department stores. From the very, very earliest days of the Internet he knew that Brick And Mortar stores were doomed, so he told his friend Jeff Bezos that he'd invest in any Internet business that Bezos started.

Jeff Bezos went on to found Amazon. Perhaps you've heard of it.

"Our country is rapidly becoming less a capitalist society and more a feudal society. Unless our policies change dramatically, the middle class will disappear, and we will be back to late 18th-century France. Before the revolution."

Karl Marx was anything but a Molotov-hurling revolutionary; rather Marx devoted sixteen years to quiet study in the British Library in hopes that he could find some alternative to the cruelty of European Feudalism.

Hilarity Ensued.

Just today a bunch of white supremacists held a rally in Portland's Tom McCall Waterfront Park. They were met by the Antifa. Clad in riot gear and bearing shields fashioned from plastic barrels, each Antifa member wore a helmet upon which was painted a red Hammer And Sickle.

No one rememebrs anymore that Germany was a Communist nation from the end of World War I until the Weimar Republic was established. Throughout the Weimar's existence there was widespread support for Communism among the German people. Those Communists went on to be slaughtered by the NAZIs.

Adolf Schicklgruber later adopted the Nom de Guerre of "Adolph Hitler". He was at first a homeless and injured war veteran - he breathed poison gas during his service in World War I. That he rose to such awesome power was the result of his stumbling upon a beer hall where the patrons challenged each other to public speaking contests.

That Hitler rose to power was also the result of his outspoken opposition to the cruel war reparations imposed on Germany by the Treaty Of Versailles. The defeated Germany was forced to pay not in printed money but in the only "hard currency" available to it: a great many tons of steel, coal and other commodities. The Versailles reparations devastated what little was left of the war-ravaged German economy.

The reparations weren't in reality intended to rebuild France or to punish Germany for starting the war; rather they were a tit-for-tat response to Germany's imposition of similar reparations upon a defeated France after it lost a previous war against Germany in the nineteenth century.

All the German films of the time as well as American and British newsreels that we have ever seen lead us to believe that Hitler was a raving lunatic when he screamed rather than spoke in public. In reality, Adolf Hitler was a gifted public speaker, it's just that such exaggerated expression appealed to the German people of the day. Vladimir Ilyich Lenin's similar oratory style appealed to the Russian people in much the same way.

I own of copy of Eric Manheim's 1943 English translation of "Mein Kampf" - "My Struggle". So far I've only managed to work up the intestinal fortitude to read just the Introduction but really: that was enough for me.

Adolph Hitler was also a gifted writer.

Being not German but Austrian, Hitler spoke Hochdeutsch - "High German" - the language of the mountainous Austria and Southern Germany. Hochdeutsch is just what you want for ordering soldiers around - it has very sharp, sudden consonants. "Mach Schell!" - "Hurry!" - works really well in Hochdeutsch.

But Hitler wrote Mein Kampf in the much softer, far-more placid style of Lower Germany - the agricultural plains in the North. In a very matter of fact way, Hitler explains that he will elucidate, "in two volumes", his plans for "The Racial State".

At the end of Mein Kampf's Introduction, Hitler dedicates his text to the sixteen men who fell for him in the M√ľnschen Putsch. More commonly known as "The Beer Hall Putsch", it was a failed effort to overthrow the government of the Weimar Republic, an act of treason for which Hitler was punished by but five years in prison, during which time he wrote his book.

Sixteen.

I remain skeptical of the assertion that "Those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it" but I am quite certain of this:

Those of us who do study history are forever condemned to dwell in sorrow because we understand all too well just why history had to be the way it actually was.

Sixteen.

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