By Patrice Greanville
As part of our occasional special reports on the right, we’d like to introduce our audience now to Kitty Werthmann, a vigorous octogenarian who currently stumps the country as the renascent right’s new champion for a putative type of libertarian democracy whose real coordinates remain suspiciously murky.
Obviously neither left nor right nor center—Mrs. W’s spiel is not particularly helpful when it comes to defining her own political predilection—listeners to Mrs. W may be excused for wondering aloud what political path she is actually suggesting.
Ms W’s specialty in the deliberate confusionism that clogs America’s mind is to add to it by selling the public the idea that since Hitler was a socialist (sic), any leader, like Barack Obama, for example, putatively dragging the nation kicking and screaming toward “socialism” (sic sic sic) must be a new Hitler in sheep’s clothes. Of course, anyone familiar with the Nazis’ ascent to power knows that they chose to use the word “socialist” —their party’s name was officially the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei —National Socialist Workers Party, NSDAP—precisely because of that label’s popularity among the workers. It was a conscious attempt by the right and the establishment powers behind it at stealing a march from the left, to attract clueless, fearful people to the notion that this strain of rabidly nationalist socialism could be embraced after all since it was patriotic. The ruse worked and the rest is history, as they say, and please forgive the oversimplification.
At any rate I must admit that this line of propaganda by the wing nuts is perhaps one of their best vehicles yet to mislead the clueless—and thereby mobilize them—in the direction of their “solutions” to America’s multitude of self-inflicted political wounds.
Communism and fascism are one and the same
The idea that polar opposites can actually march in the same direction, beholden to the same goals (in this case abominable ones), is one of the oldest fraudulent equations in the American political marketplace. It never seems to go out of fashion because it appeals to simpletons, and it also traps an inordinately high number of victims among the perennial low-info types that abound in America. (Yes, I know, it’s shocking to hear it: ignorance still reigns supreme in America.)
The confusion and hypocrisy start when wing nuts matter-of-factly equate communism with fascism, and profess to hate Hitlerism, the very incarnation of monstrous fascism, but now curiously defined as any form of amorphous government “interference” with an individual’s “right” to do as s/he damn well pleases. Further, consistent with their crypto-racist hyper individualist canon, their most resented intervention by the state is that designed to help the weakest sectors of the population. Or the environment. As natural-born dominionists, most wing nuts and radical Christians regard nature as a passive, inexhaustible resource to be exploited ad nauseam by “man”.
As is customary in most propaganda, especially of the right, the lies and mangled historical facts are so thick as to constitute a near impenetrable puzzle that few souls can negotiate with their minds intact.
More dangerously, the manmade fog does not only attach to facts, but to proto-facts: the scaffolding on which wild claims are pegged.
“I was there, I saw it with my own eyes…”
Consider for example the vaunted credibility of “firsthand witnesses to history”, the chief platform for Ms. Werthmann’s claim to be paid attention as a witness to history, to wit, how Hitler came to power and the implications thereof. While simpletons in every latitude tend to believe intrinsically that an eyewitness to something is the pre-eminent source on whom to base one’s opinion, I beg to differ, and I’m certain that many of TGP’s readers share my skepticism.
People who reside or find themselves in a given country or area when important events take place are not to be automatically credited with a proper understanding of what they say they saw.
First, there’s the blinders of existing prejudices, the ineradicable subjective in all personal accounts. Then, another important hurdle: the level of political maturity and education to judge such events. While more education does not automatically translate into reliable accounts as class prejudices cut deep and deform what is “seen”—in general, the more educated the individual the higher the probability that a broader perspective will be used to filter impressions.
Take for example a simple and recent historical question: Was Ronald Reagan a great guy and worthy leader of the American people, or a hypocritical, warmongering shill for the corporate imperial plutocracy?
If you took a poll today, probably close to half of all living Americans would reply that Reagan was a great guy and a great leader who “defeated communism, restored faith in ourselves,” and many other pearls in a rosary of high-handed baloney that propaganda spin masters wove around his image. For only through such subterfuge was Ronnie, in actuality a vile anti-communist imperialist and FBI informer, sold to the public and posterity as a Great Man worthy of a place on Mt. Rushmore. (As it is Reagan has been ludicrously memorialized in far too many venues, from airports to aircraft supercarriers,
and the usual combination of cretins and prostitutes in Congress and elsewhere continue to press for more honors). Yet, weren’t these untold millions of clueless Americans right here, on American soil when the “Great Communicator” lied his way for eight unbroken years? When he ruthlessly skewered the working class and conducted secret, unauthorized wars? Weren’t these Americans “firsthand witnesses”? What’s more, hard as it may be for liberaloids to swallow, no less than one-third of the American population still has a high opinion of George W and his shameless war criminal accomplice, Dick Cheney (both still very much at large and benefiting from a slow but sure “image rehabilitation” courtesy of the feckless Democrats and Barack Obama in particular). For them these guys represent the truest values that make America great, “numero uno” in the disheveled family of nations. Such people, with prejudices and obtuseness reinforced every day by active misinformers like Fox News and passive misleaders throughout the rest of the American media, understand little or nothing to this day. As a result they keep going in circles, increasingly prey to the insane interpretation of the day for all that is wrong with America and their lives.
This remarkable group idiocy is not confined to the right: something similar can be said of the legions of Obamabots whose faith in Wall Street’s Trojan horse, while slightly shaken at times, has recently received a new lease on life as their favorite hypocrite stumps the nation spewing all kinds of populist rhetoric to put some badly needed heft in a still flaccid campaign. Granted, Obama represents a far smoother level of deceit than Bush2 and his cabal, but doesn’t his practically unbroken record of class collaboration with the superrich signify that this time the pied piper is not to be believed? My guess—which I think you share—is that once again lesser evilism will triumph. Big time. To that end, and fulfilling their mission, the Republicans, as befits the true, horrid face of a decrepit criminal capitalism (I’m speaking here in terms of ethics and popular representation, not muscle) generously provide the wind under the wings of the Democrats in what is in essence a quadrennial farce devoid of actual democratic substance.
Many will say: you are asking us to put the Democrats aside, to do what? Deliver the election to the Republicans? This is not the place to discuss in detail what needs to be done, but, as I have repeatedly said, Americans need to step out of the LOTE game, leave behind the system-injected delusions, and develop far more original, tough, and disciplined electoral and non-electoral tactics and strategies to wrench real power from the entrenched usurpers at the top. It won’t be easy; that much we can be certain. But to do that successfully, not to defeat ourselves at the starting gate, the people must also bypass and dismantle all the false options crowding the political field. On the right and on the faux left.
That’s the purpose of these exercises.
Well, I said my peace about this. Let me pass the baton now to our colleagues at thumpandwhip.com, who last year did a terrific job unmasking Ms. W’s role in this farandula. As far as I’m concerned her message is not so much poisonous because of the blatant lies—the idea that a servant of Wall Street like Barack Obama would be a dangerous socialist, Marxist, whatever—but because, by pretending to dump on Hitler, it covers the tracks of the right, which has always backed capitalism and fascism (the former’s brutal progeny) to the bitter end.
Make no mistake: Ms. W is not being trotted about by wingnut organizations because she’s an unbiased witness to history. And while a lot of her reactionary spiel is transparent in its insidiousness (“Hitler Restructured the Family Through Daycare…” ergo do not listen to those who fight for daycare, healthcare or any other “care”…) attention must be paid. Incidentally, her slander of socialized healthcare is especially crude and, I should think, easy to rebut. The woman is implying that socialized healthcare and medicine mean Hitlerism, and yet neither Canada, Britain or France, to name just a few nations that enjoy universal, state-guaranteed healthcare, are anywhere near being out and out fascist dictatorships. So much for the power of her logic.
In any case, the addendum presents the material “straight from the horse’s mouth”. Check it out and judge for yourselves. —PG
It’s time someone took Kitty Werthmann down a peg
Hullooo, it’s me! Tell me — are you sick of propaganda? Have you grown tired of hysteria? Do you feel like slapping the next fool who compares Obama to Hitler?
Get ready to knock an old lady off her rocker. Kitty Werthmann is a shriveled wingnut with a great gig. An Austrian survivor of Hitler’s Third Reich, Kitty speaks to conservative throngs. She wows them with first-hand accounts of life under Adolf. Which, I’ll admit, is pretty interesting stuff, if only it stopped there.
But the actual tortured past is not enough for Kitty. Today’s glorious right-wing offers too much money and adoration. So she appears before Tea Party crowds, talks about how Hitler employed millions, built freeways and ass-fucked humanity, and the teabaggers turn to jelly. They go home and start breathless internet threads about Obammunist Fascism, or they send you annoying e-mails featuring this wrinkled wizard of doom.
Like her, Kitty’s routine is old and lazy. A gift of the lottery of long life, her eyewitness schtick is: you Americans, I’m warning you, your Socialist president is Adolf Hitler. You can’t argue with that. Bet me. She was there! Fuck off, and buy some breath mints.
“In 1938, the media reported that Hitler rolled into Austria with tanks and guns and took us over. Not true at all. The Austrian people elected Hitler by 98% of the vote by means of the ballot box. Now, you might ask, ‘How could a Christian nation, almost 100% Catholic, to elect a monster like Hitler?’ The truth is, at the beginning, Hitler didn’t look like or talk like a monster at all. He talked like an American politician.”
. . the crowd breaks into applause, the jig is up, and Kitty’s off and running. You see? Barack’s a mere couple months from gassing you.
Sadly, she has no gift for haute entertainment: Kitty doesn’t know when to let a crowd off the hook. She is Adolf and overkill, nothing else. After the opening, she smashes the bank of right-wing hot buttons with everything she’s got: politicians, speeches, child care, centralization, Bella Jesse Boxer Abzug, nationalization of the car industry, nationalization of the banks, nationalization of churches and farms, the ERA(?), abortion, Mexicans, communists, political indoctrination, euthanasia, Deutschland Uber Alles, and gun control. And thus the point: it’s all the same!
But Kitty’s pathetic. Wanna know why the idiot historians said “In 1938, the media reported Hitler rolled into Austria with tanks and guns and took us over”? Because, in 1938, Hitler rolled into Austria with tanks and guns and took the country over.
Under growing pressure from German-supported Austrian National Socialists and Hitler (who was born in Austria), Austrian Chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg felt his nation could soon be consumed by its aggressive neighbor. Schuschnigg called for a national plebiscite on the question of remaining an independent nation. It was so effective a ploy, the vote likely resulting in a rejection of Germany, that it catalyzed the end of free Austria: the home-baked Nazis rose up, and Hitler threatened a Guernica-style attack. Seeing bloodshed in the offing, Schuschnigg and his cabinet resigned. The tanks rolled in the next day, and Hitler swung by a couple days later. That’s when they held a second sham plebiscite where (whaddyaknow!) the Nazis won.
Werthmann starts her talks by citing that vote — which Hitler’s minions claimed they won by not 98%, but 99%, never verified — as the dishonest way to warn you how easily the decimation of America, the death of you and the initiation of genocide could happen.
I’d call her preposterous, but watch the video distillation for yourself. She’s more than that. What do you say about the purposes of someone who, in 2011, is telling you the witnesses lied in 1938? That it was Hitler who told the truth? What do you note of someone who warns that liberals are crazy, murderous lunatics? “Keep your guns! Keep your guns and buy more guns!” Kitty’s living proof a krotchet-munch can outlive the Third Reich.
We hereby reproduce in toto (courtesy of Real News, an unsolicited wing nut newsletter I receive periodically) the material bearing Ms, W’s testimony and warning to Americans.
(Common sense, politically incorrect newsletter to 15,317 subscribers)
Our mission is to get our readers thinking about current events.
DON’T ALLOW AMERICA TO
FOLLOW HITLER’S SOCIALIST
STEPS TO DICTATORSHIP.
America Truly Is the Greatest Country in the World
By: Kitty Werthmann
What I am about to tell you is something you’ve probably never heard or will ever read in history books. I believe that I am an eyewitness to istory. I cannot tell you that Hitler took Austria by tanks and guns; it would distort history. We elected him by a landslide — 98% of the vote. I’ve never read that in any American publications. Everyone thinks that Hitler just rolled in with his tanks and took Austria by force.
In 1938, Austria was in deep Depression. Nearly one-third of our workforce was unemployed. We had 25% inflation and 25% bank loan interest rates.
Farmers and business people were declaring bankruptcy daily. Young people were going from house to house begging for food. Not that they didn’t want to work; there simply weren’t any jobs. My mother was a Christian woman and believed in helping people in need. Every day we cooked a big kettle of soup and baked bread to feed those poor, hungry people — about 30 daily.
The Communist Party and the National Socialist Party were fighting each other. Blocks and blocks of cities like Vienna, Linz , and Graz were destroyed. The people became desperate and petitioned the government to let them decide what kind of government they wanted. We looked to our neighbor on the north, Germany, where Hitler had been in power since 1933. We had been told that they didn’t have unemployment or crime, and they had a high standard of living. Nothing was ever said about persecution of any group — Jewish or otherwise. We were led to believe that everyone was happy. We wanted the same way of life in Austria.
We were promised that a vote for Hitler would mean the end of unemployment and help for the family. Hitler also said that businesses would be assisted, and farmers would get their farms back. Ninety-eight percent of the population voted to annex Austria to Germany and have Hitler for our ruler. We were overjoyed, and for three days we danced in the streets and had candlelight parades. The new government opened up big field kitchens and everyone was fed.
After the election, German officials were appointed, and like a miracle, we suddenly had law and order. Three or four weeks later, everyone was employed. The government made sure that a lot of work was created through the Public Work Service. Hitler decided we should have equal rights for women. Before this, it was a custom that married Austrian women did not work outside the home.
An able-bodied husband would be looked down on if he couldn’t support his family. Many women in the teaching profession were elated that they could retain the jobs they previously had been required to give up for marriage.
Hitler Targets Education – Eliminates Religious Instruction for Children:
Our education was nationalized. I attended a very good public school. The population was predominantly Catholic, so we had religion in our schools. The day we elected Hitler (March 13, 1938), I walked into my schoolroom to find the crucifix replaced by Hitler’s picture hanging next to a Nazi flag. Our teacher, a very devout woman, stood up and told
the class we wouldn’t pray or have religion anymore. Instead, we sang “Deutschland, Deutschland, Uber Alles”, and had physical education.
Sunday became National Youth Day with compulsory attendance. Parents were not pleased about the sudden change in curriculum. They were told that if they did not send us, they would receive a stiff letter of warning the first time. The second time they would be fined the equivalent of $300, and the third time they would be subject to jail.
The first two hours consisted of political indoctrination. The rest of the day we had sports. As time went along, we loved it. Oh, we had so much fun and got our sports equipment free. We would go home and gleefully tell our parents about the wonderful time we had.
My mother was very unhappy. When the next term started, she took me out of public school and put me in a convent. I told her she couldn’t do that and she told me that someday when I grew up, I would be grateful. There was a very good curriculum, but hardly any fun — no sports, and no political indoctrination. I hated it at first but felt I could tolerate it.
Every once in a while, on holidays, I went home. I would go back to my old friends and ask what was going on and what they were doing. Their loose lifestyle was very alarming to me. They lived without religion. By that time unwed mothers were glorified for having a baby for Hitler. It seemed strange to me that our society changed so suddenly. As time went along, I realized what a great deed my mother did so that I wasn’t exposed to that kind of humanistic philosophy.
Equal Rights Hits Home:
In 1939, the war started and a food bank was established. All food was rationed and could only be purchased using food stamps. At the same time, a full-employment law was passed which meant if you didn’t work, you didn’t get a ration card, and if you didn’t have a card, you starved to death. Women who stayed home to raise their families didn’t have any marketable skills and often had to take jobs more suited for men.
Soon after this, the draft was implemented. It was compulsory for young people, male and female, to give one year to the labor corps. During the day, the girls worked on the farms, and at night they returned to their barracks for military training just like the boys. They were trained to be anti-aircraft gunners and participated in the signal corps.
After the labor corps, they were not discharged but were used in the front lines. When I go back to Austria to visit my family and friends, most of these women are emotional cripples because they just were not equipped to handle the horrors of combat. Three months before I turned 18, I was severely injured in an air raid attack. I nearly had a leg amputated, so I was spared having to go into the labor corps and into military service.
Hitler Restructured the Family Through Daycare:
When the mothers had to go out into the work force, the government immediately established child care centers. You could take your children ages 4 weeks to school age and leave them there around-the-clock, 7 days a week, under the total care of the government. The state raised a whole generation of children. There were no motherly women to take care of the children, just people highly trained in child psychology. By this time, no one talked about equal rights. We knew we had been had.
Health Care and Small Business Suffer Under Government Controls:
Before Hitler, we had very good medical care. Many American doctors trained at the University of Vienna. After Hitler, health care was socialized, free for everyone. Doctors were salaried by the government. The problem was, since it was free, the people were going to the doctors for everything.
When the good doctor arrived at his office at 8 a.m., 40 people were already waiting and, at the same time, the hospitals were full. If you needed elective surgery, you had to wait a year or two for your turn. There was no money for research as it was poured into socialized medicine. Research at the medical schools literally stopped, so the best
doctors left Austria and emigrated to other countries.
As for healthcare, our tax rates went up to 80% of our income. Newlyweds immediately received a $1,000 loan from the government to establish a household. We had big programs for families. All day care and education were free. High schools were taken over by the government and college tuition was subsidized. Everyone was entitled to free handouts, such as food stamps, clothing, and housing.
We had another agency designed to monitor business. My brother-in-law owned a restaurant that had square tables. Government officials told him he had to replace them with round tables because people might bump themselves on the corners. Then they said he had to have additional bathroom facilities. It was just a small dairy business with a snack bar. He couldn’t meet all the demands. Soon, he went out of business. If the government owned the large businesses and not many small ones existed, it could be in control.
We had consumer protection. We were told how to shop and what to buy. Free enterprise was essentially abolished. We had a planning agency specially designed for farmers. The agents would go to the farms, count the live-stock, then tell the farmers what to produce, and how to produce it.
“Mercy Killing” Redefined:
In 1944, I was a student teacher in a small village in the Alps. The villagers were surrounded by mountain passes which, in the winter, were closed off with snow, causing people to be isolated. So people intermarried and offspring were sometimes retarded. When I arrived, I was told there were 15 mentally retarded adults, but they were all useful
and did good manual work. I knew one, named Vincent, very well. He was a janitor of the school. One day I looked out the window and saw Vincent and others getting into a van. I asked my superior where they were going. She said to an institution where the State Health Department would teach them a trade, and to read and write. The families were
required to sign papers with a little clause that they could not visit for 6 months. They were told visits would interfere with the program and might cause homesickness.
As time passed, letters started to dribble back saying these people died a natural, merciful death. The villagers were not fooled. We suspected what was happening. Those people left in excellent physical health and all died within 6 months. We called this euthanasia.
The Final Steps – Gun Laws:
Next came gun registration. People were getting injured by guns. Hitler said that the real way to catch criminals (we still had a few) was by matching serial numbers on guns. Most citizens were law abiding and dutifully marched to the police station to register their firearms. Not long afterwards, the police said that it was best for everyone to turn in their guns. The authorities already knew who had them, so it was futile not to comply voluntarily.
No more freedom of speech. Anyone who said something against the government was taken away. We knew many people who were arrested, not only Jews, but also priests and ministers who spoke up. Totalitarianism didn’t come quickly, it took 5 years from 1938 until 1943, to realize full dictatorship in Austria. Had it happened overnight, my countrymen would have fought to the last breath. Instead, we had creeping gradualism. Now, our only weapons were broom handles.
The whole idea sounds almost unbelievable that the state, little by little, eroded our freedom. After World War II, Russian troops occupied Austria. Women were raped, preteen to elderly. The press never wrote about this either.
When the Soviets left in 1955, they took everything that they could, dismantling whole factories in the process. They sawed down whole orchards of fruit, and what they couldn’t destroy, they burned. We called it The Burned Earth. Most of the population barricaded themselves in their houses. Women hid in their cellars for 6 weeks as the troops mobilized. Those who couldn’t, paid the price. There is a monument in Vienna today, dedicated to those women who were massacred by the Russians. This is an eye witness account.
America Truly is the Greatest Country in the World
It’s true. Those of us who sailed past the Statue of Liberty came to a country of unbelievable freedom and opportunity.
Don’t Let Freedom Slip Away. After America, There is No Place to Go. Please forward this message to other voters who may not have it.
–The author of this article lives in South Dakota and is very active in attempting to maintain our freedom. I encourage everybody to read this article and pass it along. I see so many parallels in this country –are we going to sit by and watch it happen? Spread the word; also contact your congressional reps; vote them out if they don’t do what they
should. If you don’t want to be bothered, then you’re part of the problem! Google Kitty Werthmann and you will see articles and videos.
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