02. July 2005 · Comments Off on My, how History Repeats Itself. · Categories: General

This ties into an email I just received from one of our more brilliant (albeit perhaps rather innocent) readers, quoting Hermann Goering:

Of course the people don’t want war. But after all, it’s the leaders of the
country who determine the policy, and it’s always a simple matter to drag the
people along whether it’s a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament
or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be
brought to the bidding of the leaders. That’s easy. All you have to do is tell
them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifist for lack of patriotism,
and exposing them to greater danger.

I pointed out to her that, while not untrue, this quote was hardly seminal. But, by attaching it to a reviled Nazi, certain factions gain political advantage.

An incise knowledge of history is essential, for the electorate to rise above the demagogues.

Argh! I lost the whole first half of this post, concerning David McCullough, 1776, and the unpopularity of the American Revolution. Oh, fuck it.

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