Welcome guest, is this your first visit? Create Account now to join.
  • Login:

Welcome to the Online Debate Network.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.

Page 1 of 6 1 2 3 4 5 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 112
  1. #1
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Asia
    Posts
    1,961
    Post Thanks / Like

    Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    First of all, what exactly constitutes something as being "right wing" or "left wing"? In certain countries so called, "right wingers" support welfare, something that only most "left wingers" support in the U.S. Also, what about people who describe themselves as "conservative democrats"?

    Secondly, why should fascism and Nazism be associated with this label? According to Zeev Sternhell, professor of political science at Hebrew University, Fascism has it's roots in revolutionary, far left movements. Prof. Emeritus Jacob Salwyn Schapiro that:

    "It would be a great error to regard fascism as a counterrevolutionary movement directed against the communists . . . Fascism is something unique in modern history, in that it is a revolutionary movement of the middle class directed, on the one hand, against the great banks and big business and, on the other hand, against the revolutionary demands of the working class." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._Salwyn_Schapiro).

    Nazism has expressed pro-Communist/Socialist and anti-Capitalist views. Nazi anti-capitalist propaganda frequently targetted upper class jews (Stefan Sullivan, Marx for a Post-Communist Era, 44), while in his book, Hitler: Nemesis, University of Sheffield Professor, Ian Kershaw, states that Hitler admired Stalin, and considered making him a puppet governor of the Nazi state after it took over Russia. People who point to the Nazis rabid anti-Socialist and Communist campaigns need to remember that Communists and Socialists frequently fought and oppressed one another. According to Leonard Shapiro in his book, The Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Lenin used revolutionary terror against anyone, including other Socialists.

    I certainly wouldn't go as far as to say that Nazism and/or Fascism are left wing phenomena, but it's no more valid to say the opposite. Nazism and Fascism were unique philosophies that borrowed from a wide variety of political influences - be they racism, socialism, nationalism, or what have you. It's probably for that reason that the term is used as an insult on both sides of the political spectrum, whether its anti-war activists calling their enemies as "fascists" or Rush Limbaugh calling feminists "feminazis".

  2. Likes Gherkin liked this post
  3. #2
    ODN Administrator

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rural Southern Indiana
    Posts
    5,285
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    That depends on how you take things. Certainly there are those who take "republicans" and "democrats" and equate them with "conservatives" and "liberals" respectively. Then they take any furtherance of those ideals and apply the same labels without fully understanding those labels to begin with. The labels do, themselves, have "popular" definitions, in that most people on the street would give you something very similar, at least here in the US. But I don't believe people understand those labels very clearly.

    I would argue, then, that a liberal ideology would increase the size and scope of state either intentionally or unintentionally. Whereas a conservative ideology would do the opposite, naturally. Socialism/communism would be the ultimate empowerment of the state, and therefore I would call it a very "liberal" philosopy. The same would then go for nazis/fascists, as they too seek to increase "government."
    "And that, my lord, is how we know the Earth to be banana-shaped." ~ Monty Python


  4. Likes Gherkin liked this post
  5. #3
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    1,785
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by czahar View Post
    First of all, what exactly constitutes something as being "right wing" or "left wing"? In certain countries so called, "right wingers" support welfare, something that only most "left wingers" support in the U.S. Also, what about people who describe themselves as "conservative democrats"?

    Secondly, why should fascism and Nazism be associated with this label? According to Zeev Sternhell, professor of political science at Hebrew University, Fascism has it's roots in revolutionary, far left movements. Prof. Emeritus Jacob Salwyn Schapiro that:

    "It would be a great error to regard fascism as a counterrevolutionary movement directed against the communists . . . Fascism is something unique in modern history, in that it is a revolutionary movement of the middle class directed, on the one hand, against the great banks and big business and, on the other hand, against the revolutionary demands of the working class." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._Salwyn_Schapiro).

    Nazism has expressed pro-Communist/Socialist and anti-Capitalist views. Nazi anti-capitalist propaganda frequently targetted upper class jews (Stefan Sullivan, Marx for a Post-Communist Era, 44), while in his book, Hitler: Nemesis, University of Sheffield Professor, Ian Kershaw, states that Hitler admired Stalin, and considered making him a puppet governor of the Nazi state after it took over Russia. People who point to the Nazis rabid anti-Socialist and Communist campaigns need to remember that Communists and Socialists frequently fought and oppressed one another. According to Leonard Shapiro in his book, The Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Lenin used revolutionary terror against anyone, including other Socialists.

    I certainly wouldn't go as far as to say that Nazism and/or Fascism are left wing phenomena, but it's no more valid to say the opposite. Nazism and Fascism were unique philosophies that borrowed from a wide variety of political influences - be they racism, socialism, nationalism, or what have you. It's probably for that reason that the term is used as an insult on both sides of the political spectrum, whether its anti-war activists calling their enemies as "fascists" or Rush Limbaugh calling feminists "feminazis".
    I would say that calling nazism "something unique in modern history" is very accurate. It took aspects of each end of the political spectrum and bastardized them into something sinister.

  6. #4
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Asia
    Posts
    1,961
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by ladyphoenix View Post
    That depends on how you take things. Certainly there are those who take "republicans" and "democrats" and equate them with "conservatives" and "liberals" respectively. Then they take any furtherance of those ideals and apply the same labels without fully understanding those labels to begin with. The labels do, themselves, have "popular" definitions, in that most people on the street would give you something very similar, at least here in the US. But I don't believe people understand those labels very clearly.

    I would argue, then, that a liberal ideology would increase the size and scope of state either intentionally or unintentionally. Whereas a conservative ideology would do the opposite, naturally. Socialism/communism would be the ultimate empowerment of the state, and therefore I would call it a very "liberal" philosopy. The same would then go for nazis/fascists, as they too seek to increase "government."
    Very interesting viewpoint. Should anarchists be thought of as "right wing" then?

  7. #5
    ODN Administrator

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rural Southern Indiana
    Posts
    5,285
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by czahar View Post
    Very interesting viewpoint. Should anarchists be thought of as "right wing" then?
    I would call myself a market anarchist, and yes, I would label myself conservative. But make no mistake, I'm arguing from my own definitions of the words. Most people who call themselves "conservative" are by no means as conservative as I consider myself. Most of them advocate for taxes, military, law, police (as the state-sponsored enforcement of law), etc., whereas I would not advocate any of those things. But again, this is just my take on the matter.
    "And that, my lord, is how we know the Earth to be banana-shaped." ~ Monty Python


  8. #6
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    1,785
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by ladyphoenix View Post
    I would call myself a market anarchist, and yes, I would label myself conservative. But make no mistake, I'm arguing from my own definitions of the words. Most people who call themselves "conservative" are by no means as conservative as I consider myself. Most of them advocate for taxes, military, law, police (as the state-sponsored enforcement of law), etc., whereas I would not advocate any of those things. But again, this is just my take on the matter.
    ladyphoenix, I'm curious, how would your "ideal society" deal with the issues that are addressed by the existence of taxes, military, law, police, etc?

  9. #7
    ODN Administrator

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rural Southern Indiana
    Posts
    5,285
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    That's not the focus of this thread. Feel free to open up a thread for market anarchists on this subject, and may I suggest you narrow your focus to one of those things... perhaps start more than one thread to cover various aspects.

    Otherwise, let's try to keep with the topic of this thread. Thanks.
    "And that, my lord, is how we know the Earth to be banana-shaped." ~ Monty Python


  10. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    64
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    http://www.politicalcompass.org/

    This site does a good job of talking about the failings of the one dimensional, ''left-right'' political classifications that we use today. In addition, there is a political test that puts your views on a two dimensional graph. It's pretty interesting.

  11. #9
    ODN Administrator

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rural Southern Indiana
    Posts
    5,285
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    All due respect, that graph is one school of thought, and while it has merit, I do believe that it has its own failings. It tries to separate social and economic issues as though they are entirely independent. The two are very much intertwined, at least from where I stand. I'm sure that socialists, especially anarchosocialists, would disagree with me, but that's neither here nor there. My linear way of thinking works for my purposes, thanks.
    "And that, my lord, is how we know the Earth to be banana-shaped." ~ Monty Python


  12. #10
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    64
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Well it is true that the political compass is not perfect, the line can lead to some misunderstandings and confusion about the politics of certain parties or philosophies. It may work well enough that there is no drastic need for change, but TV works relatively well, too. Why should anyone purchase an HDTV, then? A clearer picture (in politics and television) is something to be desired.

  13. Likes LagerHead liked this post
  14. #11
    ODN Administrator

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rural Southern Indiana
    Posts
    5,285
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    The difference here, is, again, ideology. I don't believe that there are differences between what most people consider "liberal" or "conservative" ideals. I don't see one person advocating for more regulation of business any different from a person advocating more regulation of individual (non-business) behavior. They are both arguing for more regulation, hence more law, hence bigger state, hence more taxes...... it boils down to the same thing in my eyes.

    So again, it doesn't need to be any more complicated from MY perspective. I don't think it is any more complicated than that. I think that such complications are likey just a way to make people's contradicting "beliefs" somehow reconcilable.
    "And that, my lord, is how we know the Earth to be banana-shaped." ~ Monty Python


  15. #12
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,471
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    You can't compare American rightist or leftist views to historical far right or far left ideologies like fascism and communism. The American mainstream political parties are both basically centrist, agreeing on the fundamentals of our representative democratic government structure. Aside from their economic differences, fascism and communism are more alike than different in their basic statist structure and disregard for human rights.

  16. #13
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,427
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Most political definitions have to be taken in the context of the time in which they opperated. Democrats and Repoblicans have had different views throught american history and what is right wing today may not be right wing tomorrow.

    At the time of WW2, you had various political schools of thought. The "right" were better described as radical nationalists who wanted to move into the future based on the moral virtues of the past emphasising national or racial identity/superiority. They were conservatives in the sense that they were harkening back to "traditional values" of thier forefathers, or at least thier interpretation of them.

    Liberalism was typified by the french revolution and the generel movement of democracy, and with democracy you get the idea that the people can cange the way thigns are done, break tradition, do something new etc... To a right wing perspective of tradition harkening back to kings and such, any kind of break from the old laws is by definition bad and a corruption of the pure form of society.

    So america is really rooted in a liberal tradition and a "left" leaning political philosophy, but our people and culture also has a very strong traditionalist streak, mostly stemming not from our polititions but from our chruches and religious leaders. So we have tides of right and tides of left. All countries do, but we do seem to have a pretty even split of it.

    So its fair to say the Nazis were "Right Wing" but its not fair to paint american Right Wing movements wtih the Nazi brush unless they are draping themselves in that flag.

    The underlying idea of tradition and nationalism arn't evil concepts in an of themselves. Although I'm more a leftie in that I'm leary of nationalism when it says the other guys arn't worth while, and I'm sceptical of tradition when it doesn't bother considering the alternatives.

  17. #14
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    I've always rather thought that "leftist" ideologies are more susceptible to perversion and violence. Not that leftist principles are always necessarily linked to these, but that the potential to abuse the principles is more likely. The basis for this belief? ...history. Look at some of the popular great "leftist" movements of the past...The French Revolution and the subsequent Terror (possibly the one of the best documented in Western society), Nazism and the Holocaust, the Cultural Revolution and millions of deaths, the Camer Rouge and deaths of million, the list goes on...(not to mention the Bolshevik Revolution). Any thoughts on this?

  18. #15
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,427
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by scottyT View Post
    Look at some of the popular great "leftist" movements of the past...The French Revolution and the subsequent Terror (possibly the one of the best documented in Western society), Nazism and the Holocaust, the Cultural Revolution and millions of deaths, the Camer Rouge and deaths of million, the list goes on...(not to mention the Bolshevik Revolution). Any thoughts on this?
    Nazis arn't leftists, but the rest to some extent can be categorised that way. Although for me, communism betrays its left leanings when it resorts to authoritarian governments.

    For me, Nationalism is really the culprit in all those cases. Where people suddenly decide the state is more important than the people of the state or that an ideal is more important than human lives.

    I don't think right or left has any monopoly on violence. The leftists can be just as brutal and ruthless as the right. Both are prone to feeling that anyone who doesn't share thier views doesn't deserve to live.

  19. #16
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    Nazis arn't leftists, but the rest to some extent can be categorised that way. Although for me, communism betrays its left leanings when it resorts to authoritarian governments.

    For me, Nationalism is really the culprit in all those cases. Where people suddenly decide the state is more important than the people of the state or that an ideal is more important than human lives.

    I don't think right or left has any monopoly on violence. The leftists can be just as brutal and ruthless as the right. Both are prone to feeling that anyone who doesn't share thier views doesn't deserve to live.
    Right, but extremely strong central government (the state) is commonly associated with leftist philosophy, is it not? Is National Socialism not leftist then?

  20. #17
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Asia
    Posts
    1,961
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    At the time of WW2, you had various political schools of thought. The "right" were better described as radical nationalists who wanted to move into the future based on the moral virtues of the past emphasising national or racial identity/superiority. They were conservatives in the sense that they were harkening back to "traditional values" of thier forefathers, or at least thier interpretation of them.

    Liberalism was typified by the french revolution and the generel movement of democracy, and with democracy you get the idea that the people can cange the way thigns are done, break tradition, do something new etc... To a right wing perspective of tradition harkening back to kings and such, any kind of break from the old laws is by definition bad and a corruption of the pure form of society.

    So america is really rooted in a liberal tradition and a "left" leaning political philosophy, but our people and culture also has a very strong traditionalist streak, mostly stemming not from our polititions but from our chruches and religious leaders. So we have tides of right and tides of left. All countries do, but we do seem to have a pretty even split of it.

    So its fair to say the Nazis were "Right Wing" but its not fair to paint american Right Wing movements wtih the Nazi brush unless they are draping themselves in that flag.
    I disagree with the idea that the Nazis should necessarily be considered "right wing". Though they certainly appealed to tradition in many respects, they also adopted a lot of radical, new philosophies into their ideology. First of all, biological racism and Social Darwinism were both fairly new (19th century) ideologies in the history of Europe. Secondly, Alfred Rosenberg, a key thinker in much of Nazi ideology, had numerous radical Christian and openly pagan views that certainly would've gone against the traditions of the past. Unlike past Christian thinkers and civilizations, Rosenberg didn't think that it was the human duty to serve God. Instead, he thought it was religion's duty to serve the Volk. Thirdly, the Nazis did adopt a lot of Socialist imagery and thought into their ideology - the struggle of the hard working, German farmer, against the capitalist Jew and the glorification of peasent life were all part of Nazi ideology. To say that they didn't practice these ideals is not always correct. Young Germans from all economic classes were taken into the Hitler Youth and put through the exact same training and farm/war related labor.

  21. #18
    I've been given a "timeout"

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    131
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by scottyT View Post
    Right, but extremely strong central government (the state) is commonly associated with leftist philosophy, is it not? Is National Socialism not leftist then?
    Strong central governments are characteristic of any political philosophy which advocates use of the state to achieve particular ends. This can involve both leftist and rightist ideologies, since either might use government to meet their ideological standards.

    The left entails the promotion of individual liberty, and for modern American liberals (not classical liberals) and socialists, this usually involves the elimination of poverty, wealth gaps, lack of education, and other social ills determined to be detrimental to the promotion of that liberty.

    The right entails the promotion of traditional values, encompassing institutions which are failing or threatened by social change. Rightist attempts to maintain these institutions and traditional values can often be backed by governmental policy, resulting in an expansion of government.

  22. #19
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ubermensch View Post
    Strong central governments are characteristic of any political philosophy which advocates use of the state to achieve particular ends. This can involve both leftist and rightist ideologies, since either might use government to meet their ideological standards.

    The left entails the promotion of individual liberty, and for modern American liberals (not classical liberals) and socialists, this usually involves the elimination of poverty, wealth gaps, lack of education, and other social ills determined to be detrimental to the promotion of that liberty.

    The right entails the promotion of traditional values, encompassing institutions which are failing or threatened by social change. Rightist attempts to maintain these institutions and traditional values can often be backed by governmental policy, resulting in an expansion of government.
    I see, very good explanation by the way...concise and to the point. Do you think the Nazi movement would have drifted so "right" if it didn't have to contend with Bolshevism? Or I guess another way to phrase the question, Do you think the competition between Bolsheviks and Nazis must have made the Nazi movement Rightist since the Bolsheviks were Leftists?

  23. #20
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Asia
    Posts
    1,961
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Is It Fair to Describe Fascism and Nazism as "Right Wing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by scottyT View Post
    I see, very good explanation by the way...concise and to the point. Do you think the Nazi movement would have drifted so "right" if it didn't have to contend with Bolshevism? Or I guess another way to phrase the question, Do you think the competition between Bolsheviks and Nazis must have made the Nazi movement Rightist since the Bolsheviks were Leftists?
    Absolutely! People often forget the massive amount of anti-capitalist propaganda in Nazi literature and thought. The reason why the Nazis didn't attack capitalism with the ferocity that they attacked socialism with was because A) Hitler was an opportunist, and appealing to fat cats certainly would've helped lever him into and hold onto power, and B) there was not such a visible capitalist party to contend with him. Most people forget that, for both Nazism and Fascism, economics was a means to an end, and not and end in itself. If capitalism was more beneficial to achieving a racialist state, than the Nazis would opt with capitalism; if socialism would've helped achieve this goal, than they would've used socialism.

 

 
Page 1 of 6 1 2 3 4 5 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •