Reading some actual Nazis

National Socialism – the perennial bogeyman of right-wing politics. Yet at the same time a persistent morbid fascination all across the political spectrum. The most trafficked website on the “alt-right” appears to be The Daily Stormer, with 500k+ daily views.

Greg Johnson, the voice of the North American New Right, has a beef with the “Old Right” (his term for the interwar fascist movements), particularly National Socialism. The Nazis didn’t just stay in their ethnically “self-determined” patch of land, but expanded further and violated the “right to self-determination” of other ethnicities. I can’t help but laugh at this. I imagine a libertarian in a Gadsden flag t-shirt yelling “Stop initiating force against me!” while getting beaten. The Nazis were only helping the diaspora Germans “self-determine” along with them, after all.

Someone writing under the pseudonym of “Padishah Emperor Julius Ebola” over at TRS realizes this, however. He therefore advocates an active policy of containment and conquest for a future revolutionary Aryan state. So much for wanting to live separately, then.

Regardless, the Nazi chic has truly endured beyond belief. Forget about the Holocaust industry. Something about the Hugo Boss uniforms, the cool symbols, the marching girls of the BDM, the workplace aesthetics of Kraft durch Freude and the paramilitary ethics in a Nuremberg rally makes some people stamp their feet and say “This is what our people need!”. Where are all the Rexists, Metaxists, Brazilian or Lusitanian integralists, or even good ol’ Maurrassistes? A few French true believers might still adhere to some of the latter, but any influence on the Anglosphere is practically nil. Not that the Action francaise were like the other movements. Ernst Nolte made an error to conflate them. Still, they did intermingle.

Nazism is dead, but is it really? It’s a corpse that people can’t stop fornicating with, whether to desecrate it out of hatred, or as a token of appreciation.

“Don’t punch right” is pretty much a euphemism for “Don’t punch the Nazi, for he is the epitome of right.” Now, it can’t be that we have so many Nazi enthusiasts but little to no Maurrassistes because of the language barrier alone. Most AF works have not been translated to English, but neither have most NS works. And the ones that have are barely read (I’m implicitly counting out Mein Kampf — there was far more to NS as an ideology than Hitler the man). Does your average reader of The Daily Stormer nod at the robust framework presented in Gottfried Feder’s Die Neue Stadt? Of course not. Nor do they read Rosenberg’s verbose tomes. But, the NS movement was not a cadre of anti-intellectual power cultists per the stereotype. They had publishing houses – the Eher and the Kampf-Verlag, plus newspapers and journals. The tendency to dismiss their writings as “propaganda” or as bereft of value, is mistaken.

Yet even as Brett Stevens buries Hitler, he can’t help but sneak in quite a bit of praise.

Perhaps the far-right fondness for NS comes from a similar source to the 12-year old’s fondness for Cradle of Filth in shocking his evangelical parents? It’s there, but people don’t just listen to, say, Alice Cooper because he’s a shock rocker. They listen to the music. Similarly, people are drawn to the style of NS for deeper aesthetic and spiritual reasons.

One way to look at NS, per Ernst Nolte, is as a reaction against Bolshevism and the revolutionary waves of 1918 and 1919. That’s one part of it, but if NS were just a movement that wanted to go back to the Biedermaier days, I’d probably be one of the avid readers of The Daily Stormer today, if not donning the SA uniform and singing the Horst-Wessel-Lied, too. There was a tad more to it. It was a revolution from the right, as Hans Freyer called it.

Nor do I regard Goodrick-Clarke’s linking of NS to Ariosophy and the occult to be very useful, either. In fact, the occult seems far more influential to the small NS groups post-1945 (in the form of Miguel Serrano, Savitri Devi, etc.) than the contemporary Nazis. Still, barely anyone reads those, either.

So we have a dead and extraordinarily demonized movement whose literary tradition is highly obscure, but is an unending staple of popular culture, of political rhetoric, of tarring your foe, and of far-right sensibilities in late modernity.

This means there is some attachment to the essence and tenets of NS. Well then, instead of yelling “Nazi!” at every hint of authority, or salivating over the eagle atop swastika, let’s take the Nazis at their word and see what is so passionately inspiring about Die Revolution von Rechts.

Why don’t we start with Rudolf Jung? He’s the guy who inspired Hitler to rename the DAP to the NSDAP. In fact, the immediate predecessor of the NSDAP originated as a regional party among Germans in Bohemia. The same land that had Hussites throwing the Prague city council out of the window, and 200 years later, throwing regents of the Holy Roman Emperor out of the window, helping spark the Thirty Years’ War. In short: Around Czechs, never relax – especially if in proximity to windows. Jung’s 1921 book Der nationale Sozialismus is about this Bohemian National Socialism.

The moral renewal of our people and the development of their religious life in a German spirit. This is one of the most important demands of the national-socialist movement. It is connected with the demand of the preceding section about the struggle against any foreign influence, but above all the overpowering power of the Jewish merchant spirit. Those who, in national socialism, merely see the program of a political party, ask what such things are to be found in it. Others again hold tunes for worshipers of Wodan and the like. We have already pointed out that National Socialism represents a Weltanschauung, and indeed the German Weltanschauung. The idea of renewal lives unquestionably in our people.

We see him [the German] more or less clearly striving for expression in various forms and associations. Turnvereinen [gym clubs] and Wandervögel, for example, strive for physical rejuvenation and in connection with their mental and spiritual renewal.

Home clubs [Heimatvereinen, i.e. patriotic clubs cultivating local identities], adjustments for the maintenance of abstinence and the various youth clubs are also to be mentioned in this context. In any case, at the highest stage are those who aspire to a rebirth of religious life, which was in full bloom in our people at the time of the mystics [likely referring to volkisch mystics like Guido von List and Paul de Lagarde].The idea of renewal is directed precisely against materialism, and is thus the immediate enemy of the Bolsheviks.

Now, it is no coincidence Jung focuses on the gym clubs [Turnvereinen], given that they were conduits of national-liberal unificationist ideas in the 19th century, along with the Burschenschaften (student clubs). 6000 university students ended up forming an army in 1848 to topple the Metternichian regime in Vienna. The Wandervogel, on the other hand, emerged well after unification, and served as boy scouting clubs that inculcated romantic back-to-the-land ideas fused with Jacobin nationalism. The Hitlerjugend would borrow their model from the Wandervogel. Thus Jung provides some good historical context, from the perspective of a devoted insider.

Now, we can say that a certain positive side to NS is its unambiguous rejection of liberal and democratic egalitarianism. Hence, we read in Democracy and Leadership (1940) by Hansjoerg Maennel that:

National-Socialism is the fiercest enemy of parliamentary democracy. In opposition to that, it stands for the principle of Führertum. Führertum is the direction of an organization through one over-towering man. The leader-principle is based on the conception of human inequality. There are the intelligent and the stupid, the industrious and the lazy, the good and the bad. The particular peoples and races are different, and so are the individual human beings within a people. – Every people-comrade is appraised according to his performance for the people. Valuation according to performance. – The standard of valuation must be the same for every people-comrade. We National-Socialists reject preferential treatment for one class. (Examples: absolutism of the 18th Century; the Weimar System, in which the National-Socialist was a second-class person, while lower humanity could run wild with impunity; English plutocracy.)

There is no privilege for any special class; all people-comrades are evaluated equally. The result of an equal evaluation of the individual person is however not the same, but different. Here this principle applies: “To each what is appropriate,” not “To each the same,” as in democracy. He who sacrifices and achieves much ought to stand higher than he who achieves little and sacrifices nothing. The National-Socialist idea of leadership is founded upon a deliberate selection according to race (genetic value), character, and ability. Thus a rank-order develops. The entire people organically arrays itself as a pyramid. The most capable and gifted member of the people, who has prevailed through his over-towering achievements, stands at the head of the people: he is the Leader.

Hm, perhaps we ought to qualify our prior statement. Inequality is accepted only insofar as a level playing field is set by which people can determine their worth, their worth being their utility to the people’s community. The symbols of authority, patronage and dominion that are embodied in titles of nobility are unacceptable, for they draw a distinction between seignor and tenant. They are therefore not of a people’s community, and they deny the equal opportunity and obligation for a German to be a part of the higher organism – directly, without any intermediation from liege lords. The German must be a political Lutheran, of course.

For, as Maennel also says in Liberalism vs. Socialism from the same book (1940):

Socialism is the view that the community (the people) embodies the most important value; the individual is a member of the people and has to support his people. (Socialism, from Latin sociare = to combine, to unite.)

Adolf Hitler: “There is no freedom to sin at the expense of posterity and thus of the race.”

Socialism demands freedom for the people. – The Socialist therefore always thinks foremost about the people, not about the economy.

Purely economic thought rends the people into many interest-groups; purely political thought unites the nation.

Truly, when one thinks of uniting disparate groups, the primary solution that one comes up with is “purely political thought”. That ought to keep the people one and indivisible!

Regarding volkisch equality, we may examine a brief pamphlet by the Italian fascist Rodolfo Schott, translated for German consumption. It has a very interesting title, indeed: Fascism as a Proletarian Achievement (1935). Evidently they wanted to convey the notion that fascism was no petty Fronde of nobles, but a true Jacquerie of the impoverished underclass. He says, of the fascist demographic:

In many outspoken circles, also of some in good faith, Fascism has to this day been regarded as a reactionary rather than a revolutionary movement.

…The fascist trailblazers, among which there were quite a few real workers, had all come from socialism or syndicalism, and had left these movements after they had ascertained their incapacity for true revolution and their parliamentary rottenness.

David D. Roberts, A. James Gregor and Zeev Sternhell have all documented what Rodolfo Schott is saying, of course. We need only point out how frank even base fascist propaganda was about its origins. If the communists, instead of applying their frivolous dialectics, had actually taken the fascists’ own words seriously, we might have been spared tons of shoddy scholarship that served only to obscure the socialist and syndicalist origins of fascism. Of course, they could not have done that in good faith, for it would have meant the death knell and ostracism of their beliefs.

Quick, think of the first Nazi jurist that comes to your mind. If you thought “Carl Schmitt,” you’re wrong. Despite Schmitt frequently receiving that label from his opponents, his Concept of the Political was attacked by maverick NS jurist Otto Koellreutter for not placing Rasse und Volksgemeinschaft as the pillars of the political. Here is his Die nationalsozialistiche Rechtsstaat (1938) where the legal principles of the NS state are concisely set out:

The leader realized clearly that the essence of the political is always to be found only in the Community [Volksgemeinschaft]. This is why, according to the national socialist conception, the nature of the political lies in the community, that is to say in the friend of the people.

In the front as well as in the political struggle of the German movement, the great political experience for the front-line soldiers as well as for the political soldier Adolf Hitler was not the struggle with the opposing enemy, but the bond with his opponent, the comrade.

It is not the enemy, but the comrade who forms the actual point of view for political thought. The type of political man in the nation-socialist state is, therefore, the one who is preserved in comradeship, that is, in the devotion to the community in which he is placed, and is thus judged as a political man who can shape politics. This essence of the political as a community experience also explains the nature of leadership, which is treated as such elsewhere. It should only be stressed here that the necessity of national unity of all genuine leadership results from this conception of the political. For this reason, it is only the task of the popular leader, not of every subordinate or national, to determine the enemy of the national community. The guide alone can do this because he represents and protects the national community. If each individual wanted to exercise this right to determine the enemy, this necessarily removes the idea of community, and he thus raises the danger of denunciation and self-denial.

What a curious inversion of the friend-enemy distinction. The concept of the political strictly speaking has no enemies at all, but only friends! Friends and comrade of a particular Volksgemeinschaft, though. And there must be one exceptional Comrade who towers above all, and thus in a completely communitarian fashion he gets to decide who is the enemy, for the good of all. Recall Rudolf Jung and his Turnvereinen again. This is truly the politics of a personal fitness trainer…

Gottfried Feder was probably the most eminent NS theoretician of the more anti-capitalistic wing. He held economic views somewhat similar to Georg Friedrich Knapp’s state theory of money and to earlier “real bills” doctrines of men like Thomas Tooke [the idea that, roughly, a) money creation is driven by business demand and b) money creation is not inflationary if the bills are backed by the nominal value of productive investment projects], and is in some ways thus a predecessor to the “Modern Monetary Theory” school of L. Randall Wray and Warren Mosler (although the latter two would of course be horrified to have any ideological relation to someone like Feder). However, we won’t be talking about his economics here, even though that occupied the bulk of his ouevres. Let us look at his ideal of leadership:

Now we turn briefly to the questions of the external state form. A final decision on this question is in no way urgent. It can in general be solved only after a quite basic purging of our internal political conditions. The only possible way to this internal political purging seems to us to be exclusively through a dictatorship which with total determination cuts off and burns the sources of decomposition and disease in our national body.

The demands that we place on such a leader are extraordinarily high; a passionate love for his people, an unbending will, a virtual somnambulistic certainty in all his decisions must distinguish him. That his intellectual capacities must rise above the average is self-evident, but knowledge and capacities in the different fields are not the decisive factor. Knowledge and learning can be realised by others – How many men there are of high knowledge, great clarity of thought, of great intuition, the finest artistic talent – but if the last thing is lacking in them, the passionate will, the unswerving impulse, based on the deepest moral seriousness, then they will never stride forward at the head of nations, as trailblazers and leaders, to new heights. We think of religious geniuses like Christ and Luther, Savonarola and Mohammed, statesmen like Bismarck and Cromwell, generals like Friedrich the Great and Yorck, etc. The dictator must be completely free of all unnecessary restrictions and hesitations, for him there cannot be any inevitabilities, for it must be he who makes history and he seizes with a daring determined hand when his his hour strikes, he embodies the longing of the nation, and therefore he never errs and is borne by the fanatic love of those to whom his deed brings liberation.

That he idolizes Cromwell is telling. In fairness, so did Carlyle. But it absolutely shows that we’re not dealing with German reactionaries here, for their natural inclination would be more on the side of Austria and the Habsburgs on the German Question. That said, such a perspective was necessarily dead after the Austro-Prussian War of 1866, anyway.

The desire for a daring and adventurous leader is also borne of a different sentiment than the desire for a worldly patriarch. Feder is not seeking peace and order, but thrill and excitement.

And before that:

It requires no special emphasis that in terms of internal politics National Socialism stands unconditionally on the standpoint of the law insofar as everybody should be equal before the law and there should be no differences in social orders. But an essential transformation must be realised with respect to the basic idea of the law which signifies to the German an inner need, a voluntary subordination to the higher interests of the whole, whereas the prescriptions of the law valid among us today appear simply as a commandment of power and indeed as commandments of a power that does not stand in the service of the whole but, precisely in relation to the questions of property, has placed the protection of property before the protection of the person. The question of the new ordering of the public law will have to be discussed further in greater detail in another section.

Out with peerages, noble titles and privileges, in with… the summum bonum, somehow conceived. People over profits! Nothing Chomsky couldn’t get behind. Now, Bossuet did say that “Men are the true riches of a kingdom.” (Book X, Article I, 11th Proposition) But he prescribed marriage, frugality, thriftiness and meaningful work as ideals that the prince ought to promote. Feder’s economic remedy of elastic credit certainly doesn’t cut it.

Georg Usadel, active in volkisch circles and a member of the NSDAP who dealt with youth policy, gives us Breed and Order: The Foundations of a National Socialist Ethics (1935):

Today’s national life with its modern weaponry and transport can only preserve its organizational unity by means of connections beyond the blood relation. The relation of the factory worker to the owner of the factory, that of the merchant to the buyer, that of the farmer to the consummation of his produce, that of the scholar to his pupils, that of the artist to the owners of his works go beyond purely personal guidance; in most cases it is not present at all. Our lives no longer take place within a village community of the small town in which everyone is familiar, and where wages and prices, sales, purchases, and cultural questions must become a matter of unity, else the unity of the people would be lost. As far as the personal connection, e.g. in the country-side, still exists today, it is in the individual peasant in the Bauertum, the teacher of agriculture, and the craftsman in the craftsmanship of his people. A unity in the people is only possible if everyone from the people from Germany see a part of Germany. The great alienation which threatens to make us lonely as a result of the arms can be overcome only by a unity of fate which has been made conscious of each individual, and which has been created by many years. Such a great bond of each individual has nothing to do with equanimity, nothing with a suppression of the special facilities of the individual, nothing with the destruction of healthy individuality, nothing with the destruction of every solitude. For all the great things in this world need solitude, need silence, but not for the sake of loneliness and self-seeking self-will, but for the sake of maturity, which is to satisfy others.

For a Luther, the silence of the Wartburg period was necessary, for Bismarck the years in Schonhausen and for Hitler the stay in the Landsberg fortress. Therefore, no community is a summation of equal magnitudes (or the same small things), but a juxtaposition of different wills, rewards, talents, predispositions, and gifts. Above this often painful juxtaposition of followers, however, there must be something strongly connected in each follower, which unites them in a higher plane. This higher level is determined for the National Socialist by the principle which makes up all his life: We want to serve our people because we owe it to our lives. We want to serve to make it stronger and better, so that we may live more healthily. We want to serve because the duty to serve is honorable, and because it is the most sublime to our life on this earth, that in our faithfulness to ourselves, we owe our duty to our leaders and our comrades. Serving does not mean being serf, since only the one who possesses master-consciousness is able to serve. Frederick the Great wanted to be nothing more than a servant, and Bismarck determined that his gravestone should read that he was a servant. “Where I found life, I found the will to power, and still in the will of the minister, I found the will to be Lord.” (Nietzsche)

Much of this reminds me of Marx’s reasoning about the commodity. If one commodity can be exchanged for another and thus made equal in terms of exchange rate (1*X1=1*X2), there must be some coefficient of proportionality K to make it so. That coefficient can be nothing else besides labor. The Mengerian, on the other hand, would say that the inequality among wants and commodities is the whole reason exchange is performed in the first place. Here, Usadel’s coefficient is the striving for improvement of Rasse und Volksgemeinschaft. The Gemeinschaft of the village commune is a thing of the past, but the national-socialist state is an adequate substitute, he reasons. Subsidiarity and federalism, what are those?

Moreover, Usadel believes in the New Socialist Man quite earnestly:

From this most powerful experience of the German people we can believe in this heroic train of service, which goes through the entire people. It is only from this faith that we hope we are raising within the German people, which we call the socialist attitude. We must be clear that a new order of economic life can not be achieved without a new socialist attitude of the German people. Before we have made it a habit that we can not bend for every advantage, like a dirty coin, a new economic order will not come. For if the pursuit of profit predominates in many people, the problem of technological alienation cannot be solved.

There is a certain danger in revolutions which can be solved by a New Man who can solve all these problems. For the powerlessness to shape the present can easily be hidden in the future. But never before in history has the attempt been made to actually bring about the New Man. The will to cultivate a new Volksgenossen is new and can not be shown in the past. In former attempts at improvement, people have thought only of the mind alone, and then it was believed that man would act according to knowledge. It has been forgotten that God did not place the mind alone by itself, but that the body is the bearer of the spiritual and the soul, and with them is a wonderful inexplicable interaction which the Almighty had willed and created. Now we strive for pure forms. We see not the body alone but also the mind.

We know that a moronic mind in a healthy body does not ensure healthy offspring, and vice versa. If many generations of parents live to pure forms according to a will, then people will be born of socialist attitudes, who renounce the self-interest and the advantages, who their fellow citizens regard as the helpful neighbor and not as the profit-seeking entrepreneur. They will take it for granted that the spiritual discipline of the “all for one and one for all” is in the forefront of commerce. Then the whole activity of the individual will revolve under the point of view that the life of the nation must give us direction, and not that of the individual. The will to the total abandonment of each one to his people will appear as self-evident. This is not a fantasy, but the fulfillment of the will of God…

Usadel also has a fascinating solution to the problem of the overreaching Beamtenstaat [civil service state]. Inculcate into everyone the values of a civil servant! That’ll do the trick. Withering away of the state in no time:

The follower can only remain a simple man, therefore he must trust his guide blindly. Where he no longer believes his faithfulness to be enough, he is to confirm or disprove his mistrust of the superior leader. But even where destiny leads to falsity, the fault remains, and it must fall victim to destruction, for it is the life of the people, it destroys the mysterious life-stream of honor and truthfulness which eternity has pervaded in us. The unconditional fidelity, however, starts demanding of every individual in the people the greatest conscience against the demands of the people as a whole, and of the state. It is widespread in the broadest circles that loyalty to the observance of the so-called minor demands of the state is not necessary. Attempts to get rid of taxes, to procure small advantages by means of perseverance [lobbying] and small favors, are regarded by many as small imperfections of this life, which should not be referred to as deceitful. Frederick William I and Frederick the Great were repulsively filled with the pessimism that “these small imperfections” could not be extinguished. As much as they made fidelity to the whole administration of the state, they were at the same time permeated with a deep suspicion of the reliability of the officialdom. They have never got rid of the suspicion that the civil servant could misuse his attitude to the enrichment of his person, or, above all, the higher official could suppress the little man.

Almost all the measures taken in the internal administration of Prussia proceeded from this distrust: in order to examine the loyalty of the officials, the state apparatus was made so difficult by the control authorities, by the chamber of justice, and by mutual officials. The sluggish apparatus has largely remained up to the National Socialist upheaval, though without the temptation of state power, which was possible in a centrally controlled absolutist state. In the national-socialist state, the principle of “Thou shalt be faithfully thy duty” must be converted into “We will all faithfully do our duty.” This would lead to a great simplification, so that the gigantic demand of self-indulgence would come to a large part of the civil service to adopt a moral attitude which would lead to a diminution of the number of officials. The presupposition for this is, of course, the existence of national-socialist Volksgenossen, from whom the civil service is renewed. A further necessity consists in the fact that the official, more than before, shows himself to the other people as a faithful servant, who is there for the sake of the community, and therefore must show the public at all times kindness and service, but not a condescending grace.

While on this subject, Heinrich Schulz reminds us of the socialism in National Socialism with “Social Policy in the new Germany” (1941), a book that gives an overview of employment and welfare policies in the Third Reich. First, a blurb:

The new Germany is a state which claims that it has the ambition to become the best and largest social state on earth! It is self-evident that social policy must play a decisive role in such a state.

It will hardly be possible to separate them from the other functions of state and national life. Their intertwining with all the realities of public and private life is undeniable. Under such circumstances, family life, art, and culture will be deliberately regarded as a social factor, that is, a community [Gemeinschaft]-building factor, not to mention that economic life has to grow directly on public soil, the soil of the community.

Anyone who intends to write about social policy in the new Germany is faced with the whole political problem, and will find it difficult to separate particular parts as “social-political” from the whole body with which they are inseparably connected. He will be like the anatomist, who can probably dissect the corpse, but always escapes the mystery of life.

For social policy in Germany is not laid down in the pure legal texts, but is fulfilled in the millions of people who probably live on the basis of these laws, but far beyond them as a community.

Our successes in social policy are not devised in offices that are then to be fulfilled in accordance with the instructions, but, in fact, it is exactly the opposite: the legislature has to prove and to preserve, as initiative proceeds from below, in the truest sense of the word, therefore, from the people.

The people who are actively involved in shaping German social policy are aware that the organization of the National Socialist work order can not be exclusively the responsibility of the legislature, but that the fight for the new social law by the “pioneer workers” [German: Pionierarbeiten; i.e. journeymen/apprentices/”salad days” workers] themselves, the employers, dependents, followers and managers.
The evolutionary force of the new German social policy can, therefore, be properly understood only by those who are aware of this basic attitude. It is only those who know that not the state, but the movement, the National Socialist German Workers’ Party down to its final structure, which also encompasses the smallest support and the most forgotten market-weaver in Germany, has become the trigger of this far-reaching social-political volition of German social policy. This activist will is one of the conditions of socialist success guaranteeing the broad implementation of all measures.

Here is Schulz (very roughly translated) commenting on the system of Betriebsgemeinschaften (factory communities), a Nazi labor policy whereby any company with more than 20 employees was structured as a sort of micro-Fuehrerstaat with a Betriebsfuehrer (factory leader) in charge of his Gefolgen (followers), i.e. employees. All of this overseen by the Reichstreuhaender (Trustee of Labor), a council in the Reich Ministry of Labor. Shelley Baranowski documents all of this insanity in Strength Through Joy: Consumerism and Mass Tourism in the Third Reich.

Since, in the National Socialist social order, the manager’s care for the well-being of his Gefolgen [workers] is a statutory obligation, the right to paid leave [holiday] at full pay has become a right. It is through the influence of the German Labor Front and the tariff design of the Reichspreuhinder that this is possible. Moreover, the attitude of the entrepreneur regarding the holiday/paid leave question has become quite different since he no longer feels disadvantaged by the leave of the Gefolgsmann [worker], because he knows that only a well-rested workforce can ultimately be useful to the company. In the Committees of Social Self-Responsibility, the economic and social conditions of the various sectors of the economy are analyzed for the possibility of extending or shortening the paid leave of the Gefolgen [workers]. The advisory results are to be worked through by the responsible experts of the German Labor Front, who pass them on to the Reichsstreuhänder [Trustee of Labor]. Whilst entrepreneurs once regarded the tariff, even if so small, as an intolerable or difficult burden, they now see in it an institution which is indispensable to the preservation of labor and the joy of work, the effects of which indirectly benefit themselves.

The idea that the National Socialists weren’t really socialists is really an indefensible position. If you study the Nazi labor law and the operations of KdF (Kraft durch Freude), you’ll see they had a unique social policy that sometimes went beyond what even Marxist-Leninist states did.

And now for someone who… talked like a fag. The most famous martyr of the Roehmputsch of 1934 – Ernst Roehm himself, on the National Socialist revolution and the SA:

The assumption of power by the National Socialism was, at first, only the gaining of a permanent position from which the Schuttberg had to be cleansed of deceitful and centuries-old false thinking, which was absurd to us Germans, in order to accommodate the new nationalization of the Germans from the spirit of national socialism create. The German revolution has only smashed the state of Weimar as a manifestation.

In the place of the black-red November system [Weimar Republic], the National Socialist Regiment has set itself as the bearer of state authority. This is a purely power-political [machtpolitischer] process, which has its special significance for us only in the fact that the victorious part, in this turn of power, placed the Hakenkreuz [swastika] on the battlements of the state. With National Socialism, it has in common only the outward sign.

For, as a worldview, and its complete enforcement is the first and final goal of our long struggle, national socialism has no connection whatsoever either with the question of the state form or the bearer of the state. There were national-socialists, real, enthusiastic and victorious victims and victims of the National Socialist idea, when the confession of Adolf Hitler’s doctrine led to boycott and harassment, persecution and imprisonment, terror and assassination. And, on the other hand, Germany is not national-socialist because of its national-socialistic rule.

Government measures can only create the preconditions for the nation-socialist Weltanschauung. For this reason, they can not carry them through because ideas are not to be commanded, because everyone who wants to be a national socialist according to the heart must have personally experienced and suffered this complete inner upheaval of the new German man.

I said earlier: The S.A. is the militant will and the ideal of the National Socialist revolution. And: National Socialism is not only a political direction of will, but, above all, a worldview that must be used by the political power struggle in order to become effective in the world. Revolution is not the factual process of the struggle for power in the state and its realization, but the transformation of the thinking of the Germans in the sense of the new Weltanschauung. The national socialist revolution, if properly understood, is, therefore, a process of ideological education, which began many years before, and will only be concluded when the last German national has become the bearer and confessor of national socialism in thought and action.

This is Roehm’s primordialist thesis of what it really means to be a Nazi. The revolution can only succeed when it has transcended the state and all forms of community into becoming the very Geist of what it means to be a German. That said, Roehm did get purged, so perhaps we should just leave him at that.

Why don’t we move on to some Kulturkampf? Here is Kurt Eggers, one of the most prolific of party-affiliated writers, pontificating over the inherently pagan nature of the Germans in a pamphlet about the Romish papist conspiracy against Bismarck’s Reich:

In Austria, Christian cliques are at work to bind and slay German freedom. Reflection and collection of freedom-loving and nationally conscious circles on one side, agitation, nebulization of the spiritual fronts, defamation and slander of all kind on the other.

It is no longer about the struggle of the Spirit, for the Spirit has already triumphed over the Dark Men [clergy]. It is all about the power. Where the Dark Men [clergy] can not reign undisturbed, they scream of suppression of freedom. And where they are in power and oppress freedom, they speak anointingly of pacification in the name of God!

We are called by the spirit of Germany, that we must step forward to bear witness to the truth of the nation.

We no longer want a German conscience to suffer whether to obey the voice of his blood or the orders of any priests who serve an Asian god.

We want the great German unity, the true communion of all German will, feeling and thinking.

The fronts of the Church and of Christianity are shattered, thrown together and melted in the experience of the war.

Christians have fought against “Christians”. Christians have brought “pagans” to kill Christians.

Christian world history lost its meaning in the funnels before Verdun, in the mud of Flanders, in the steppes of Russia.

The Christian awakening followed the national awakening. Ask the soldiers if they went to the horror of material slaughter with a Christian idea. Ask them, if you have the courage to speak of the sacrifice of the cross again and again!

Go to the young and old workers whose longing is louder and stronger than the pulsing and hammering of the engines and ask them if they wanted to have the sweet consolation of the beyond!

Go to the young German people, whose longing for people and vastness, for warfare and heroism, is awake and exhorting, and ask them if for the sake of heaven they wanted to renounce the struggle in this world!

The voice of the blood has shouted at the thousand-year rape of all Germans, which was carried out by commissioners of a foreign power, who pretended that their kingdom was not of this world, but the things of this world, indeed the most primitive, so very serious. That there is no concordat that does not deal with the question of money and property in a very secular sense. One can indeed silence German people, but not their souls. Stronger than the fanatical hatred of the weak against the strong, stronger than the drowning of moral-threatening decadence, the healthy sense of the people remained, who turned their backs on the maddening of the otherworldly, in contempt, when sometimes a show of force would have been better.

The German heart, which untroubled the horror of black barbarism [the priesthood], is hateful to the dark men [clergy]. Germany has always dared to put the sun sign of victory against the cross of humiliation, and that is why a planned extermination of the cross-possessed against the strong and life-believing of the North began. That is why Germany was never to be made a kingdom. That is why one mocked that Germany, under the wise guidance of Rome, would always destroy herself.

This book on the Kulturkampf, which the champion of a strong, warlike Germany, Bismarck, had to insist, is to show how Rome and also certain circles of an “evangelical center” spun threads in order to bind the young nation before she actually awoke to freedom.

Perhaps the book also contributes to rebuking the assertion of certain interested circles, that Bismarck was a Christian statesman.

And then let us learn from the past for the present and for the future!

On this question, the NSDAP and the National Liberals were in harmony, then. Also notice the anti-monarchist message within the Ariosophic, anti-Christian babble. Truly the Nazis were reactionaries!

We jump to Friedrich Schmidt, who informs us that The Reich Develops (1940):

Here we recognize the great distinction. When the German went out into the world, he went to where work and performance were waiting for him. He wanted to give an example out there to the world. He wanted to help and convince through the deed.

Thus the modern Reich of the Germans is not the representation of the will to rule, but the representation of the German man’s will to lead. The will to persuade others by example, and to serve the purpose of creation by means of discipline and order, wherever and whenever.

The Reich of the Germans, in this sense, seeks only one thing: it wants its achievements to become an example for the young, living people. We Germans can forgo any demonstration of brutal violence in the world. The revolutionary idea of Adolf Hitler creates such an excess of the reality of our achievements that young people of the European continent and beyond the world can not escape the genius of the Germans in the long run. It is our German destiny in the world to be educators of the peoples and thus to be the executors of a final divine order.

But we can speak of the kingdom only when we are building it; in relation to all that Germany once was and has now become through Adolf Hitler and through national socialism. In doing so, we must understand the fate of the individual person in relation to the formation and realization of the Reich.

We must, therefore, enable the German man to become internally capable, so that he comprehends the duty in which every German must live opposite to the realm. In other words, only a few Germans are out of their deepest hearts and without question willing to sacrifice their lives or the lives of one of their dearest people to the Fatherland, and thus to the kingdom. Only a few consciously choose war and death, out of their inner strength, and from a level attitude. That is why it is necessary to elevate the state of those few to an attitude of all Germans.

The whole people as the living content of the word of the Reich must become so mature, and must show such a deliberate brave attitude in the face of ultimate decision that the Reich will thereby show its human weight in Europe.

This isn’t the Summa Theologica; it’s the ravings of a street preacher. No, that is far too contemptuous of the latter.

Later, in reference to Weimar strife:

This great biological development of power, including the fact that there was no uniform Volksgemeinschaft idea permeating the whole process, had to produce a completely chaotic development. This chaos, which prevailed not only in the fields of politics and economics, but also in the domains of the inner soul of man, especially in religious areas, was internally the cause of the great conflict between the years 1914 and 1918. This war was at the same time the death-knell of the confessional-democratic ideological compromise, in the face of the so-called modern age. It almost becomes grotesque to think that just at the moment when democratic ideas were visibly brought to death by the war of 1914 to 1918, Germany made the attempt to raise these ideas to political realities in the Weimar Republic. This is also one of the reasons why the last war could no longer create a new European order. On the other hand, he was compelled, through its monstrous experience, to raise the longing for a new order into a clear political will.

In Germany, Adolf Hitler proclaimed the idea of national socialism. And I am not saying too much when I assert that the Treaty of Versailles, which wanted to enslave us for generations, was at the same time the birth-hour of the Germanic revolution of Adolf Hitler. Against Versailles stood this unknown soldier of war as a protester. Versailles, by its unjustified hateful regulation of all questions regarding the European continent, ultimately created the conditions for the present war.

With the dictates of Versailles, the peripheral powers of Europe, France and England, wanted to ban the danger of a strong Germany from the continent. But things have changed. Versailles could not dissolve the Germans and divide the individual. On the contrary, the dictates of Versailles gave to the German people in their hour of need the consciousness of being a nation. But when the world, at that time hostile to the German people, removed the royal dynasties of old, they had created one more prerequisite for the great popular salvation of the Germans.

Versailles, for example, is not only the birth of the people’s national consciousness, it is also the birth of the young revolutionary movement of Adolf Hitler. From the day when Adolf Hitler was a soldier protesting against Versailles until today, a straight path from need and self-denial and dissolution leads to that inner greatness and strength of the Reich, which raised it to today’s European leadership, tomorrow and ever . Thus the Reich, as the first European power, is not a presumption of the Germans, but only a restoration of a historical mission…

The Treaty of Versailles had a silver lining, you see. It was apparently what finally made Germany a nation. Breaking the political continuity embodied in the Hohenzollerns was also necessary in order to begin the social revolution of the NSDAP.

I haven’t quoted any Rosenbergian thought. It doesn’t appear to have been particularly influential within the upper echelons of NS, nor is anything in Der Mythus des 20. Jahrhunderts the reason why NS is attractive.

I think that’s enough samples. I believe they illustrate the lesser-known yet still important aspects of Nazism.

So, let’s wrap up. What is it about Nazism? Are the alt-right Nazis?

The real conclusion to draw here isn’t that any modern far-right school of thought is neo-Nazi, but rather that Nazism was merely one of the most visible and bombastic harbingers of a general degeneration in right-wing thought that emerged in the aftermath of the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 and the Franco-Prussian War of 1871.

These wars had two effects, most notably in France and Germany. One, the fall of Austria as a major force in German politics meant the death of the counterrevolutionary school in Das Berliner Politische Wochenblatt among other journals and newspapers. Unification under Prussia essentially triggered a “hard reset” in German political discourse. Just about the only major surviving entity of the reactionary tradition was the German-Hanoverian Party formed after the annexation of Hanover by Prussia, better known as the “Guelph Party” due to its support for the old rights of the House of Welf, and for generally siding with local institutions and the church over the state. The Guelphs remained anti-Bismarckian to their core, and held many decentralist positions that could even nowadays be considered right-libertarian, except coming from a religious and neofeudal sensibility. Of course, to your average ethno-Jacobin today, anything to do with the subsidiary principle or sphere sovereignty is considered “cucked classical liberalism”. Another sign of how the modern right went wrong.

Secondly, in France, a sense of humiliation and defeat led to the popularization of Boulangisme, revanchism, the Ligue des patriotes and the development of national socialism under Maurice Barres and others. Nationalism eventually eclipsed royalism as the guiding principle of the right, and much of the right not only made its peace with republicanism, but began to accept it on a foundational level.

Nazism was one of many movements that tried to forge a right-wing coalition in the aftermath of the permanent institutionalization of the principles and values of the great liberal revolutions into the fundamental constitutions of nearly all European states.

Ultimately, I think The Social Pathologist (Slumlord) has a good explanation in terms of game. He states that fascism is socialism for alphas, and of physically strong and self-assertive men of low SES.

But it’s also because NS offers a visceral communitarian experience that the liberal state cannot offer, yet it still keeps to liberal principles of equal opportunity among the in-group, with a strong social safety net and the feeling of purpose in being a political soldier. Truly, these are passions that the managerial class cannot satisfy, but that the proles are yearning for. They are yearning for chains while you hopelessly try to “liberate” them with more pages added to the Code of Federal Regulations.


18 thoughts on “Reading some actual Nazis

  1. Thank you for citing us. It is important to maintain a balanced view of Hitler, since the real struggle here is between accurate analysis and any of a number of emotional responses, both uniformly pro- or anti-Hitler. In my view, he was doomed by his Leftist origins; National Socialism is an emotional response to the French Revolution, which kicked off the events you mentioned, but never escaped from the modernistic conception of society. Its insistence on equality guaranteed that it would reduce its values to the lowest common denominator, and this virtually guaranteed the atrocities to follow.


  2. @NTSS

    Outstanding post.

    Really. Five stars.

    I wish I could read German and go through the originals. Thanks for the translations. I think one of the really big problems in the understanding of National Socialism is the lack of proper translations into English of some of their theoretical texts. Perhaps some future Right organisation could do some for future scholarship. Though, I’m increasingly of the opinion that it’s in a lot of peoples’ interests not to have the translations done. One of the really interesting titbits from reading Griffin is the fact that the image that we have of Nazi Art, as being reactionary, seems to have been curated, and that significant Nazi modernists artworks are hidden from public view. But this is neither here nor there with regards to the thrust of your post.

    I’m fascinated that you bought up the alpha-socialism posts since I’ve been mulling on them recently with regard to the same subject. I think it would also be quite legitimate to call them alpha and beta modernism but as socialism is a specific variant of modernism, thinking of fascism as alpha socialism is probably more accurate.

    But it’s also because NS offers a visceral communitarian experience that the liberal state cannot offer, yet it still keeps to liberal principles of equal opportunity among the in-group, with a strong social safety net and the feeling of purpose in being a political soldier. Truly, these are passions that the managerial class cannot satisfy, but that the proles are yearning for. They are yearning for chains while you hopelessly try to “liberate” them with more pages added to the Code of Federal Regulations.

    The anomie produced by industrialisation and dechristianisation produced a void which was waiting to be exploited. The important word in your text is “visceral” since for many the appeal to Natsoc(and LeninSoc) was visceral, relying not on cognitive effort but the “intuitive rightness” of the utopian future.

    I don’t think (but can be convinced otherwise) that the liberal state is really what is responsible for this mess. I think a far greater problem is Western anthropology which sees man as a purely rational animal without any “visceral instincts”. Admittedly lip service is paid to human nature, but rational override is always assumed to be triumphant in the end. History shows that the this “rational override” is only ever possessed by the few, with the “mass” moving history along instinctual lines. A “good” governing class would try to govern within instinctive limits. But both Traditional Christian and Modernist movements pushed hard against human nature to their detriments. I haven’t done this theme justice in this brief comment.

    The “average Joe” pushing back against Muslim immigration isn’t justifying his position in terms of philosophical argument, he simply instinctively hates the “wogs”. Give him a philosophical argument that sounds “high falutin” and which justifies his intuition and he is on board. This is why Fascism is such a powerful co-opter of mass conservative movements; It talks the “right” talk but walks the “left” walk. It’s also why it is poison to any “right” resurgence since it captures it and steers it left. Neoreaction was travelling along reasonably well until the Natsocs appeared. Too many people just don’t see the danger.


  3. Hitler was very progressive, what with all his love of environmentalism, hatred of tobacco and income equality, etc. He praised Social Democrats crediting them for bringing about the end of “the hated monarchy” (The Habsburgs), and liked them, unlike the conservative parties which he despised and blamed for the loss in WWI. Problem with the Social Democrats, in his view, was that they transformed from a revolutionary party to a reformist one. He though that it was the leadership of the Social Democrats that is the problem, whereas masses of their supporters are on the right track. He praised Stalin calling him “one of the greatest men alive” because “he succeeded… to create a State out of this Slavic rabbit family”.

    On Italy he said:
    “The Italian problems were the remaining existence of three things: the church, the monarchy, and the reactionary generals.”

    Hitler on Spain and Franco, regretting that he supported Franco instead of the Reds:
    “In Germany Franco wouldn’t have even made a Gauleiter. He is in the pockets of the Catholic Church. The Reds at least would have eliminated the papists who want to throw us back into the Middle Ages. In the future, in the new revolution the Reds and the Falangists should form a coalition. The Reds have sided with Russia only due to a lack of the Western support, not because of general Bolshevist sympathies.”

    Interestingly enough, Günter Reimann who penned his observations of the detrimental effects of Nazi economic policies in “The Vampire Economy” was a Communist.

    Back in my paleolibertarian days I was a paleolibertarian because that was the only political ideology that I knew that allowed for the bureaucratless localist religious communities presided over by aristocrats. However, I though self-ownership axiom was nonsensical, and I could find no solution to the problem, as not even Hoppe managed to show how does one get to own himself. Then there was also the problem of existence of women, children, and natural slaves. How does one decide when someone is no longer a child? And how does one deal with the fact that women and natural slaves sometimes need to be coerced for their own good, and not simply kicked out of the community? And sure enough, the old books provided answers – replacing Locke with Aquinas solved the problem. Then I found about von Haller… I was, as they say, merry as a schoolboy.

    Now I am just waiting for Chris B. to swoop in and start claiming how only filthy liberuhlz oppose the centralization and the expansion of the State, and how Aquinas and the Bible are liberuhl conspiracies to undermine sovereign Power. Why, don’t you know that true reactionary is a Juche ideologue?


  4. Very interesting article with much thought and work evident in it. However, I would hesitate to agree that the occult (or at least “occultic thought” broadly as that term may be applied) is largely to be discounted regarding the original Nazis. The apostate monk Jörg Lanz (himself a disciple of Guido “von” List) was prone to egotism, but not far wrong when he proclaimed in 1927, “One shall remember that the swastika- and fascist movements are basically offspring of Ostara [the main literary vehicle of Lanz’s ‘Theozoölogie’].” Granted there are notable disparities, and the occultic influence was more on certain Nazis (notably Heinrich Himmler) than on Nazism as an ideology.


  5. Pingback: The Path To The Dark Reformation Part B: After Humanity. A Neoreactionary Theory of Modern Moral and Political History. | "The Horror! The Horror!"

  6. I’m surprised you only got six comments.

    Here is comment number seven. Let’s keep ’em rolling!

    The National Socialists had some pretty decent writers, evidently, but (judging by your excerpts) they do not seem to have believed in the conventional, straightforward, organized, logical development of a thesis—the way you and I were once taught to develop a thesis in ninth grade. Is this a flaw in their style? No, not necessarily, but they are Germans, and prior to their time Germans like Mommsen, Frege, Kant and even (sometimes) Hegel had given the world shining examples of logical development.

    It’s not as though Germans hadn’t known how to write an essay as you and I understand it. They had been masters of the craft. It just almost seems that, from Nietzsche and Chamberlain onward, they got bored with all that.

    The writing of these National Socialists seems essentially mystical. I do not say it pejoratively. Rather, I say it descriptively. There is hardly any one line of these Nazis one could quote out of context with sense, nor any one line one could place in context to tell exactly what the sense of it was. And yet there was indeed a sense to it, wasn’t there? There was a context, too, even if one had to be a 1930s German to fully appreciate it. Most interesting.

    German translates so happily into English, it is almost painful to turn to the from-the-French translations of your following post.

    Thank you for the readings. Though the English translations are not your own as far as I know, one can tell that you have nevertheless read some actual German at some time in your life. When did you have occasion to do that? Did you attend graduate school in history or chemistry, for example?


  7. Pingback: Lothrop Stoddard on Nazi feminism | Carlsbad 1819

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