Europe Discovers a Volatile Populism

Exclusive: European politicians are finding it tricky to “play the populist card,” as U.K. Prime Minister May discovered when her Conservative Party stumbled over its support for more austerity, writes Andrew Spannaus.

By Andrew Spannaus

Last week’s elections in the United Kingdom were a fiasco for Prime Minister Theresa May, whose Conservative Party lost 12 seats in Parliament, weakening the government just ahead of crucial negotiations on the U.K.’s exit from the European Union. The elections had been called by May with the hope of an opposite outcome; the goal was to take advantage of the Tories’ strong lead in the polls to strengthen the Conservative majority and increase May’s power.

British Prime Minister Theresa May.

One factor in this evaluation was the hope that voters would see Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn as a radical leftist, and in particular as a weak leader compared to the current Prime Minister. Yet Corbyn is the one who succeeded in exploiting the political situation in recent weeks, leading to a gain of 32 seats for Labour, and forcing May into a precarious situation where she must rely on votes from small Northern Ireland parties to obtain a majority in Parliament.

Theresa May came to power thanks to the Brexit vote held one year ago, when the people of the U.K. voted to leave the European Union (E.U.), leading to the resignation of then-Prime Minister David Cameron. The referendum had originally been called by Cameron as a way to beat back growing internal pressure from the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), led by Nigel Farage.

The political élites lost that battle, as the British population sent a strong message not only to the E.U. institutions in Brussels and Frankfurt, but principally to its own political representatives, who were seen as pursuing their own interests, while ignoring those of large segments of the population.

Immigration was a major issue in the Brexit vote, leading many commentators to brand Leave voters as racists, as has happened with anti-establishment (or populist) movements across the Western world; the same line was used in the U.S. elections, in an attempt to downplay any legitimate reasons to vote for an outsider candidate.

There is no doubt that racism is present with regard to immigration, but academic research has shown that economic difficulties exacerbate racial attitudes, even changing people’s visual perception of others. [See A. Krosch, and D. Amodio, Economic scarcity alters perceptions of race. PNAS, May 6, 2014.]

This aspect can feed into a larger mix that leads voters to support candidates who are critical of the current political institutions. Another widely circulated study in Europe has shown that economic crises lead to the rise of more extreme political parties. [See M. Funke, M. Schularick, C. Trebesch, The political aftermath of financial crises: Going to extremes, VoxEU.org, November 21, 2015]

Through an analysis of 20 advanced democracies from 1870 to date, the authors found that, in addition to the obvious case of the 1930s, which saw the advent of Nazism and Fascism, another period of heightened support for far-right parties was precisely that after the crisis that began in 2008.

Weak Recovery

The recovery since that time has been weak, and particularly unequal among socio-economic classes, so it is not surprising that the underlying economic difficulties have fueled protest votes whenever the population is given the possibility to stick it to the politicians. The June 8 general election in the U.K. shows just how important it is to recognize these undercurrents, as opposed to seeking support on collateral issues that many voters may ultimately recognize as superficial.

Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of Great Britain’s Labour Party.

Given the victory of Leave in the Brexit vote last year, Theresa May sought to capitalize. Facing resistance in the Parliament, the Prime Minister thought that an election campaign focused on strong leadership to lead the U.K. out of the E.U. would naturally find a great deal of support.

What May ignored, however, is the need to link the political argument to people’s basic economic needs. She paid lip service to the issue, promising benefits for the British people by leaving the European common market, and announcing new initiatives to expand trade. The voters didn’t buy it though, because at the same time, May found herself on the wrong side of the all-important issue of austerity, leaving a massive flank open to Corbyn and Labour.

May took two significant hits on economic issues during the short campaign. First of all, she came under fire for cuts to the police budget, in the aftermath of recent terror attacks. May was Home Secretary – responsible for national security, policing, immigration and citizenship – from May 2010 to July 2016, during which time total police numbers in England and Wales fell by almost 20 percent. May’s response to the accusation of having weakened public safety capacity to stop terror attacks was to brand Corbyn as unprepared for office, and claim that he would be even worse. Sound familiar to American voters?

May also boasted about giving police increased powers to deal with terrorists. The image that stuck, however, was that of having cut the budget in a key area when resources are needed to guarantee security.

The second instance in which May was pummeled was the so-called “dementia tax.” The Conservatives presented their social manifesto in April, with a plan to change the rules about how the elderly pay for home care. Corbyn immediately branded the scheme a “tax on dementia,” as people who need long-term care at home would be forced to use more of their assets to pay for it: the state would be allowed to draw on a pensioner’s home equity to pay the bill.

May’s stumble on this point played into the larger narrative of the negative effects of the Conservatives’ austerity policies in recent years. In fact the backlash regarding social spending cuts had already become manifest at the time of the Brexit vote. The week the Brits went to the polls a year ago, newspapers ran headlines on poverty increasing for the first time in a decade, clearly linked to the social welfare cuts presented as “necessary” to deal with the economic crisis.

Fed Up with Austerity

Elsewhere in Europe, the U.K. has been presented as a success story, a country that has made the “tough choices” necessary to fix the budget and allow for growth again. It’s a common refrain, based on the monetarist ideology, which holds that austerity is the magic formula that will create confidence and thus kick-start economic activity.

Flag of the European Union.

The reality is usually the opposite. Cuts to social services and investment hurt the population’s standard of living, and inhibit growth; papering over this by pointing to the rebound after the fall has become a favorite pastime of neoliberal economists and politicians.

What we have seen throughout the Western world in the past year is that the population is no longer buying it. The hollowing out of the middle class in the name of promoting economic and financial globalization has led to a revolt of voters against the Establishment.

Theresa May, who became Prime Minister thanks to last year’s first manifestation of this protest vote, approving the U.K.’s departure from the E.U., now risks becoming a victim of that same revolt.

May attempted to exploit nationalist support for Britain to strengthen her majority in Parliament, but she did so by focusing on issues that proved to be weaker than expected when not tied to the underlying discontent in the population, fueled by the reduction of living standards and the increase in economic insecurity.

Jeremy Corbyn, who campaigned unabashedly on a leftist, anti-austerity program, was able to intersect part of the same anti-establishment sentiment that fueled the Brexit vote, and turn it to his advantage. The results of the elections in the U.K. demonstrate once again that the “populist” revolt is not a one-way street.

The Conservatives are still the leading party in Parliament, but it is now clear that they need to review their own policies from recent years, and recognize that the protest vote will turn against whoever defends a status quo that is not working for a large part of the population.

Andrew Spannaus is a freelance journalist and strategic analyst based in Milan, Italy. He is the founder of Transatlantico.info, that provides news, analysis and consulting to Italian institutions and businesses. His book on the U.S. elections Perchè vince Trump (Why Trump is Winning) was published in June 2016.

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29 comments for “Europe Discovers a Volatile Populism

  1. mike k
    June 16, 2017 at 9:51 am

    The accelerating slide of the modern world into collapse and chaos will not be stopped by voting. This democratic fantasy needs to be let go of. So much ink and energy is being wasted on what is in truth a long dead corpse. The powerful are in charge of our destiny, and they are failing to show any concern for long term stability or sustainability. To think that periodic elections of a new set of puppets will save us from the wild white water trip we are in for is totally unrealistic. Any real possibility of a viable way forward will need to be founded on much more radical principles than voting for it. The problem is that the people are in no way prepared for such valid radical changes, and will most likely fall for some phony fascist solutions, which will only hasten our rush to extinction.

  2. June 16, 2017 at 10:28 am

    The politicians of the Western nations are totally out of touch with their people and living in a bubble with their beliefs that statistical manipulation of money in a large global system makes any sense, and the people aren’t buying any of it because they are left out of the equation. It was a system created by wealthy power holders in the first place and they care not for the people, only for their ill-gotten gains. It took awhile for the masses to revolt, but they are doing it now, which means the power holders will have to resort to even more out-of-touch means of control.

    • mike k
      June 16, 2017 at 11:01 am

      The power players are moving now to squelch the Donald, who dared to use the power of popular discontent to challenge their monopoly of presidential selection. They will get rid of this troublesome would-be populist, and replace him with Pence, who will be right in their pocket.

      • Steve Nance
        June 16, 2017 at 11:14 am

        They won’t have to depose Trump. He was always a pseudo-populist who would say anything to get elected. He has already backtracked on many of his “promises,” and adopted the neocon foreign policy agenda as his own. His antics provide endless distraction for the media, while the elite domestic agenda — rolling back the New Deal, environmental regulation, and what little remains of civil liberties, and privatizing whatever they can get their greedy hands on — proceeds apace. This weak and unprincipled president is their best tool at this stage of the game.

        • mike k
          June 16, 2017 at 11:24 am

          I agree that the PTB will use Trump for all he’s worth while he is in office, but I think it is clear now that they will not be satisfied until they have demonstrated their power to get rid of him. He is an unreliable egoist that they can’t be sure to control, and that ensures his impeachment, or worse.

          • Brad Owen
            June 19, 2017 at 4:54 am

            That unreliability is the same thing that got Reagan shot by his co-pilot, who is a true insider, compared to the “loose cannon” Reagan. What must happen is some kind of Great Awakening, especially on the part of the securit and military forces, to see what has been going on since the post-war forties. The Synarchists are quite prepared to fight for their Agenda…war is their religion, seeing it as a great purgative to remove weakness and restore the martial virtues. They’ve been programming us Americans especially, since the fifties, via the Congress of Cultural Freedom(CCF), to be passive subjects to their machinations, as we are the key Nation to their plans (something they overlooked in their WWII plans. FDR knew this long-term threat, but his knowledge died with him. Truman was a comparative idiot). It is starting to wear off as they move to seize full control, and the Silk Road alternative becomes more noticeable.

          • Brad Owen
            June 19, 2017 at 6:20 am

            Had FDR survived to the end of his fourth term (Jan. 1949) and with his entire New Deal team intact, there would have been no ratlines into USA, no Red Scare, no cold War with the Soviets. Instead, there would have been a full airing of the Synarchist threat to the World, despite their WWII universal fascism plans having been defeated on the battlefield, but NOT yet in the boardrooms of those “economic Royalists” in Wall Street and City-of-London, and other capitals of Finance, where these vile plans were hatched. There would have been coordination with the Soviets and the Republic of China, and the former colonies-now-turned-sovereign-nations, via U.N. committees, to round up the perps in the boardrooms for inflicting WWII upon the World, and the New Silk Road would have commenced in the fifties, instead of seventy years later, against strenuous Synarchist opposition.

  3. mike k
    June 16, 2017 at 11:17 am

    I am surprised that there has been no comment here on the bombshell recent leak that the special counsel has opened a criminal investigation of the president. This is obviously being done to lay the grounds for his impeachment. Very little has been said of this in the media, since the initial quiet announcement a couple of days ago. Apparently the relevant players and the media want this to get by without a large reaction from Trump’s followers. It is however a major step in the campaign to oust the Potus. The charge they are pushing is obstruction of justice in the handling of the Comey affair. A red herring indeed, but this is what they have decided to push. I suppose the whole scheme will be more prominently displayed when they feel the time is right.

  4. June 16, 2017 at 11:31 am

    Trump tweeted yesterday or today, why isn’t there an investigation of Clinton’s abuse of power for personal gain when she was Secretary of State and of her e-mail server discrepancies.

    • mike k
      June 16, 2017 at 11:35 am

      We know why. Hillary was their girl; she must remain above suspicion, unlike the abominable Trump and his legion of deplorables.

    • Litchfield
      June 18, 2017 at 4:00 pm

      This war of Tweets is not, IMO, a good way for DT to go. It may connect him to his base, but it also makes him look and sound ridiculous and hapless. NO one care about what someone says. He is th epresident. He can take action. He must take actoin. .
      He needs to get his press secretary or his chief of staff or someone to stand up at a press conference and point out that he is being hounded for unproven activity whereas Hillalry Clinton could and should be investigated for her traitorous misuse of office, selling access, etc. Not to mention the antics of Huma Abedin. Where are, actually, the laptops? In fact, Trump couild direct his justice department to investigate Clinton. Why doesnt’ he do it? He is only being reactive. He has to get proactive and go on the offensive if he wants to save his presidency.

  5. mike k
    June 16, 2017 at 11:32 am

    The whole thrust of the conspirators (think Julius Caesar) is to make their phony witch hunt look like a serious and legitimate undertaking, done in defense of the highest principles. These are the congressional frauds at their best. This is the kind of hypocritical bullshit they spend their lives perfecting.

  6. Abe
    June 16, 2017 at 11:33 am

    “In March 2016 EU leaders met and agreed to a deal with Ankara in which every person arriving ‘irregularly’ on Greek islands should be returned to Turkey. In return for agreeing, Turkey was to receive €6 billion from the EU for refugee care, as well as visa-free EU entry for Turkish citizens. Turkey already had taken an estimated 2.5 million refugees from Syria alone since the start of the war.

    “Since that March 2016 deal, refugee flows to Greece and the Balkan states have reduced dramatically. The March 2016 EU-Ankara agreement, which has not yet been honored in important parts by the EU, dramatically reduced the visible human refugee flows, though doing little to end the origins of the crisis–the NATO-incited wars across Eurasia from Ukraine to the Middle East.

    “The established EU political parties, especially after the German-backed victory of Macron over Le Pen, have used the hiatus in the refugee crisis to lull their voters into an illusion that the “crisis” is over.

    “I am far from supporting the racist philosophy of Marine Le Pen. But she made a truthful, if cynical remark in her final campaign speech in France when she charged Macron with being under the German Chancellor’s thumb, stating ‘In any case, France will be led by a woman: Either me or Mrs. Merkel.’

    “It appears that Merkel is, indeed, now the true new President of France. Already Merkel and her government are telling Macron what he needs to do with his French economy. She wasted no time to tell Macron to implement for France the deep 2002 German Agenda 2010 economic reforms of the labor market in France, reforms which in 2017 in the structurally very different French economy, would be disastrous.

    “What she and Macron can now do to correct the very deep problems within the Eurozone and the economies of the EU, however, is far from obvious given their apparent religious belief in the present EU structure and its globalist economic agenda. Those parlous economic and financial conditions and fear of millions more of industrial job losses are the true underlying causes of the recent rise of EU nationalism. Many Europeans today fear for their economic future. There, the EU has spectacularly failed to implement positive policies, merely to cover them over until the next major EU elections in Germany this September when we can expect a re-elected Merkel Germany to lead a push for grotesque EU austerity, backed by a compliant Emmaneul Macron.

    “As Germany’s experience with Chancellor Heinrich Brüning in 1930 underscores, slashing worker wages and social benefits in government austerity drives never creates prosperity.

    “In Weimar Germany after 1932 it fermented the social unrest and mass unemployment that the NSDAP of Hitler and his banker backers used to create a Nazi Third Reich.”

    What’s Really Going on in These EU elections?
    By F. William Engdahl
    http://www.williamengdahl.com/englishNEO4June2017.php

  7. Ol' Hippy
    June 16, 2017 at 11:37 am

    It’s time these stories get told and exposed for what they are. Men of power can’t continue to act with impunity and no reprisals for these egregious behaviors. Time’s up for these fools to work within laws they continue to disregard without reprisal. The time’s no to stop actions of the worse sort.

    \\\\\\

  8. matt c
    June 16, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    Quite right Mike!
    An eagle cannot fly with only one wing.
    The populace can see that there is only one message coming from our ‘elected’ officials.
    which is, neo-lib/con austerity for the masses & bail-outs for the 1%.
    This will not change via elections.
    This scenario will only lead to more violence, and that plays right into the hands of our masters.

    So I say,
    “Don’t nitpick, Picnic!”

  9. Bill Bodden
    June 16, 2017 at 12:44 pm

    An interesting viewpoint from the Asia Times:

    “The lawyers’ civil war: Trump is under siege by shock troops from the left and right – an illegal and unconstitutional mutiny” By David P. Goldman June 16, 2017 – http://www.atimes.com/article/lawyers-civil-war/

  10. June 16, 2017 at 1:08 pm

    One of the best summations and from outside the US, that article from Asia Times, thank you, Bill. Printing it out for circulation is well worth it, and the quote from Alfred Hitchcock on the McGuffin is priceless. I can just see and hear Hitchcock explaining it.

  11. cmp
    June 16, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    Within the criminal abuses that George Washington so clearly warned us of in his Farewell Address – is that the art of issues and politics lies in how to Never Solve the problems – while still fanning the flames of demagoguery to be even hotter.

    For example: How is it that the Owners in the US have been able to use race, ethnicity and gender to distribute unequal pay and unequal job distributions for over 225 continuous years? .. While simultaneously turning it around, and calling the people “the xenophobes?”

    Why, at the very start of the Western Coup in the Ukraine, did Russia cut off all “remittance payments” to the Ukraine? .. I was told that Russia was fueling the war there. .. So, wouldn’t “remittance payments” be the cheapest way for Russia to fund the Western imposed “civil war?” .. Isn’t this wethe standard tool in the Western toolbox, and it is used every time?

    How come we never hear about stampeding Population Transfers to Canada?

    The Labour Party in England was all against the vote for the Brexit. .. But, Corbyn, he sat out the issue, and didn’t campaign with Labour on it. .. But, isn’t it now convenient that London Finance, they may just get a little softer landing with their negotiations within the EU.

    The Atlantic reported that Macron’s Campaign was headed up by former Obama Campaign staffers who had subsequently setup a campaign consulting shop in France after 2008. .. I wonder, just where they derived their income the last 9 years?

    It’s an interesting read about the Green Party in Germany. There are many similarities with the dominant SPD and the US Democratic Party. (..and it’s monopoly on the First Amendment here at home) A simple, quick read is available at: Britannica dot com/topic/Green-Party-of-Germany.

  12. Virginia
    June 16, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    I suppose none of you watch BlueBloods. I happened to see a rerun last night which showed Commissioner Reagan saying to another officer something along the lines of what Trump said to Comey. The Commissioner being very careful not to command or coerce, it went something like this (regarding the arrest of Reagan’s office cleaner’s son): “It’s just as important to prove the innocence of someone as it is to prove the guilty guilty. I hope you can find a way of taking another look at that evidence.” And all was well ’cause ended week.

    Commissioner Reagan didn’t come under investigation, was not arrested, did not even lose his job. Hmm!

    • Virginia
      June 16, 2017 at 1:25 pm

      Correction, not “ended week,” but “ended well.”

  13. F. G. Sanford
    June 16, 2017 at 1:47 pm

    Y’all need to listen, and listen real good. You need to read that article Abe cites above, and inform yourselves about its historical context. The “left”, the “radical left”, the “deep state left”…these are terms being thrown around with unnatural frequency in both the mainstream and alternative media lately. Somebody ought to ask, or demand – that they DEFINE THEIR TERMS. I’m tellin’ ya, you’re being scammed, and you’re being scammed with the same scam the National “Socialists” used.

    Let’s talk a little about Hitler’s “economic miracle”, the one touted by contemporaneous Americans who despised FDR. That “miracle” reduced unemployment to zero. It got the beggars off the streets, eliminated violence perpetrated by the “radical left”, cleaned up prostitution, eliminated petty crime, and restored order…at least that’s the story fed to the public by the controlled press, and even Americans fell for it hook, line and sinker.

    How did this “economic miracle” take place, you ask? Why, it’s very simple: SLAVE LABOR. Dachau’s original inmates were the poor, unemployed, political opposition members and social undesirables. The details of how they were motivated to comply after “reeducation” are a little too grisly for this forum, but you can easily find out for yourself.

    Hitler was not a “leftist”, but that’s the meme that’s going around lately. The accusation of “leftism” is being liberally applied, but not by liberals. “Left” and “right” in the historical context of “social stratification theory” refers to political and economic systems which either preserve or dismantle barriers to economic equality. Apparently, even “economists” today don’t understand that…or at least pretend that they don’t.

    There is currently NO POLITICAL LEFT in the United States. Today, there are SEVEN TIMES as many people in prison as there were when Ronald Reagan left office. That trend began under Bill Clinton. He was a moderate fascist, NOT a “democrat”. Hillary Clinton would not concede to living wage measures, single payer healthcare, reduction in military spending, finance reforms, tax reforms or job creation and infrastructure spending. She had only one plank in her platform: “Russia”. She is a “center right fascist” by world historical standards. Bernie Sanders, based on a long voting track record, is a militarist. Yes, he favored tax reform and a minimum wage increase, but if judged by 1936 FDR “New Deal” standards, he is a RIGHT WING democrat.

    President Trump is a necessary figure in the evolution of America’s social decline and looming economic collapse. Americans will have to get it through their heads once and for all that the “American System” of Hamiltonian dirigism and “New Deal” economics is the only way out. It will require massive cuts in military spending and the elimination of “Welfare for the Rich”. We have been operating under a de facto “austerity system” since the end of Reagan’s first term. Politically, it could be described as “soft fascism”, but the “powers that be” are determined to convince you that the problems are all caused by “the left”. The only issues that really separate any of these “party affiliations” are gun control and abortion. Hitler favored both. Do you really think that made him a left-leaning democrat? Better wake up, y’all, I’m tryin’ to ‘splain ya sumpum.

    • mike k
      June 16, 2017 at 3:16 pm

      There is only really one party and political philosophy that counts, and that is the party of unbridled greed, violence, and lust for power. That is the real party that is shaping our history, that is the deep state – and it is lodged in the depths of every human being born on this planet. This is our history, our karma, the real world culture that underlies all the pretenses concealing it. To think that changing the distribution or features of the superficial right left center etc. which are only surface appearances will correct the failed nature of the human experiment is to remain in illusion, shuffling symbolic cards while neglecting the real roots of our difficulties – which are within ourselves. The chaos of our outer government is a reflection of the inner lack of real order in ourselves, as Plato understood. The reason Pogo’s little mantra – we have met the enemy, and it is us – catches our attention and is instinctively felt to convey a truth is that it is deeply true and relevant.

      • Mike
        June 17, 2017 at 12:32 am

        On my cynical days, I am inclined to agree.

        On my better days, I remember that the global direction of the world is headed by transnational capitalists – and their platform is created among this groups top hundred holders of wealth.

        To combat the byproduct of information globalization however, they are increasingly relying on surveillance, private military contractors, and intentional mass media manipulation.

        If the mass majority of people were like them, they would not need to rely on such measures.

        Taking down this cabal that is turning the world into a bloodbath of despair will require a global hit to their economic infrastructure.

        Realistically, this can only happen through the use of cyberwarfar or by gutting one of the most integral, consolidated, demanded, transnational industries : food.

        Remember mad cow disease?

        There is more that I can say, but i would suggest going down the rabbit hole on your own terms.

      • Litchfield
        June 18, 2017 at 4:13 pm

        “and it is lodged in the depths of every human being born on this planet. This is our history, our karma,”

        What a cop-out, Mike. That simply is not true. You are looking in a mirror maybe and thinking You Are the World.
        On a personal level, sure, we all have a demon or two, a neurosis or two, a chip on the shoulder or two.
        But that is not sociopolitical theory.
        Pogo is cute, but I don’t look to Pogo for understanding of the forces that are driving national and world politics today. Don’t be silly. Reminds me of the writer who thought he could derive an anlysis of 50 years
        of American history via “The Wizard of Oz”.

        No, not all people are driven by greed. Either personally or in their political expressions.
        End of story.

        • Brad Owen
          June 19, 2017 at 7:01 am

          I much prefer Lincoln’s view: “The Better Angels of our Nature”, and it is indeed a conflict between Good and Evil, NOT just all Evil, and the outcome is not known in advance…the fight will first have to be waged…it is inescapable, and it starts in one’s own Heart&Soul, and is reflected our there, in our Real World. In a way, the Synarchists are right…we are here to fight; but they stand by Evil, and we must rally around The Good, both internally and externally…and it is NOT clear, cut & dried, how that is accomplished, despite all the claims of orthodoxies.

          • Brad Owen
            June 19, 2017 at 7:25 am

            F.G. Sanford is right, and re-embracing New Deal dirigist policies represents the outer expression of people wanting to rally around, and do, what is Good for the people.

    • Abe
      June 16, 2017 at 10:10 pm

      In fact, Hitler and Nazi racists favored abortion for so-called “undesirable” populations in the name of “human evolution”.

      In Hitler’s Ethic: The Nazi Pursuit of Evolutionary Progress (2009), the sequel to his earlier book, From Darwin to Hitler: Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics, and Racism in Germany (2004), professor of history Richard Weikart stated:

      “Hitler’s opposition to abortion is sometimes portrayed as evidence of his traditional Christian moral values. However, Hitler never appealed to religion, God, or divine revelation to ground his opposition to abortion. Rather he insisted on vigorous enforcement of extant antiabortion laws because he considered German population expansion vital to the improvement of the Aryan race. Also, Hitler did not oppose abortion per se, but only abortion of healthy, Aryan babies. Abortion was permitted – even encouraged or required – for those who might produce ‘inferior’ offspring or for Jews. The ultimate authority was not God, the Bible, religious tradition, or any fixed moral code containing the command, ‘thou shalt not kill.’ Rather, for Hitler the highest arbiter of morality and political policies was the evolutionary advancement of the human species. In the final analysis, Hitler based his morality on a racist form of evolutionary ethics.” (page 8)

      Later in Hitler’s Ethic, Weikart observed:

      “Hitler’s sexual morality comported in many ways with conservative values, since he opposed birth control, abortion, and homosexuality. He pilloried the erotic culture of urban centers and hoped to throttle prostitution. Hitler posed as a moral crusader for conservative values by pledging to eliminate sexually explicit content from German culture. Nazi propaganda consistently portrayed Hitler and the Nazi Party as upholders of family values and clean morals. […]

      “Ultimately Hitler’s sexual morality differed in important respects from the values dear to many of his conservative supporters. His goal of biological improvement of the German people and his willingness to countenance any means to reach this end placed him at odds with many social conservatives. Thus, while the Nazi regime promoted early marriage, it also relaxed divorce laws, encouraged extramarital sexual affairs, and tried to eliminate the stigma of illegitimacy. While banning contraception and incarcerating homosexuals, the Nazis also introduced sweeping new marriage restrictions and compulsory sterilization. Though prohibiting most abortions, they compelled some women to have abortions.” (page 122)

      Weikart noted that Nazi eugenicist concern for racial purity led to different restrictions for segments of German society and people in the German-occupied territories:

      “After World War II began, the Nazi regime introduced a variety of measures to discourage reproduction among the allegedly inferior peoples in their occupied territories in Poland and the Soviet Union. […] In July 1942 Hitler railed at the ‘idiot’ who suggested banning abortions in occupied Eastern territories. Rather, he stated, the German occupiers should encourage abortion and contraception, and they should refrain from providing any medical care to the native populations. (page 147)

      • Abe
        June 16, 2017 at 10:41 pm

        Concepts of evolutionary ethics, eugenics, racist notions, and views of abortion as a tool for “social engineering” were brought to Palestine and Israel by German-Jewish scientists.

        Eugenics-based policies in Israel were developed by doctors who “actually studied the foundations of the theory in Germany before immigrating to Palestine, directly from the scientists who supported using eugenics to forcibly sterilize mentally ill and physically disabled Germans – and subsequently to justify their murder. Within a few years, the German scientists were using the same justification for killing Jews.

        “Many of the Jewish psychiatrists subscribed to their German colleagues’ conception of the Jews as a race, relying on the theory that was developed in Europe […] However, upon their arrival in Palestine, they encountered Jews of different types and began to distinguish between the race of European Jews, and that of the Sephardi and Mizrahi Jews (of Middle Eastern and North African origin).”

        Eugenics in Israel: Did Jews Try to Improve the Human Race Too?
        By Yotam Feldman
        http://www.haaretz.com/eugenics-in-israel-did-jews-try-to-improve-the-human-race-too-1.276038

    • Joe Tedesky
      June 16, 2017 at 10:18 pm

      I wish more people could read your warning, as what you state is vitally important.

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