Comparisons are always being made by people on the Left between modern-day Republicans and Nazis. “They’re evil!” is the most common equivalency unfairly leveled at conservatives. Take the “Antifa,” or “Anti-fascists,” who represent a violent sect of left-wing resistance to the Trump presidency as a prime example. The Antifa think fascists have infiltrated the White House because the administration is emphatically patriotic, is committed to stopping illegal immigration, and wants to reestablish a strong rule of law.
These are more or less conservative principles—though, true conservatism is obviously so much more than three positions—and yet people on the Left are constantly equating this with the ideology of Nazism. Look at what happened in response to President Trump’s recent speech at the Annual Boy Scout National Jamboree.
It seems the Left just can’t get enough of painting political adversaries as Nazis. Perhaps this is because Nazism is generally accepted as a “far-right” political ideology. Here’s the problem with that. In both general philosophy of governing and concrete policy positions, Nazism is very much a left-wing ideology. America’s modern-day Democratic Party’s platform resembles that of Hitler’s National Socialist Democratic Workers’ Party more closely than the Republicans’ ever could.
Let’s begin with the former. Most Democrats possess a belief that the common good of society should precede individual prosperity. This is evident in their support for massive government programs like the Affordable Care Act and their propensity for identity politics, which places organized groups above individual people. Thus, a robust, far-reaching federal government is needed to serve the interests of society as a whole.
Now look at three points from the German Workers’ Party (which later became the Nazi Party) “25-Point Program” that Adolf Hitler introduced in 1920:
“The activity of individuals is not to counteract the interests of the universality, but must have its result within the framework of the whole for the benefit of all.”
“…a lasting recovery of our nation can only succeed from within on the framework: the common good before the individual good.”
“For the execution of [this program] we demand the formation of a strong central power in the Reich. Unlimited authority of the central parliament over the whole Reich and its organizations in general. The forming of state and profession chambers for the execution of the laws made by the Reich within the various states of the confederation.”
It’s obvious that this is a socialist philosophy, but Nazism is misconstrued as a far-right ideology because of its militaristic, nationalist tendencies. In America, since Woodrow Wilson’s progressivism, FDR’s New Deal, Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society, and Barack Obama’s “Change,” Democrats have curbed individualism for the sake of sweeping changes at the societal level. No such movements have existed among Republicans, let alone the more conservative factions of the GOP.
Now let’s dial in on more specific policy areas. The hallmark of a good Democrat in today’s America is demonizing corporations, promising unencumbered social benefits, and taking the constitutional promise of “promoting the general Welfare” to extraneous lengths.
On Monday, Congressional Democratic leaders introduced their new promise to Americans, lamely titled “A Better Deal.” This will be their platform for a 2018 election cycle that will no doubt be a ripe opportunity to take back majorities on Capitol Hill.
A core piece of this new plan focuses on heavily regulating large companies that are supposedly swindling average people. It neglects to mention that corporations like Amazon, Walmart, and Apple have done more for average consumers than government ever could, and the reason they move their manufacturing abroad is America’s endless regulatory red tape and tax burdens. Democrats also blame these large corporations for having immense lobbying power, but if the government did not have its hands all over the free market, lobbying might just go the way of the Dodo bird.
#ABetterDeal also seeks to expand the federal government’s largest social safety nets, such as Medicare. This is being paraded in the form of a righteous crackdown on pharmaceutical companies to lower drug costs. While price gouging of innovative prescription drugs is a serious issue, the solution lies in rolling back FDA regulations, not adding more. The general consensus among Democrats is that healthcare, though very much a commodity, is a basic right, and all roads lead to single-payer.
And lastly, the Better Deal promises more and more stuff to average Americans, such as a national paid family leave program and a massive infrastructure investment plan. Not to mention Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren’s belief that a college education should be free. How they plan to pay for all of this remains a mystery of epic proportion.
So what were the specific policies the Nazi Party promised to implement if the German people yielded power to them? Let’s return to the “25-Point Program.”
“We demand a division of profits of all heavy industries.”
“We demand that the state be charged first with providing the opportunity for a livelihood and way of life for the citizens.”
“We demand an expansion on a large scale of old age welfare.”
“The state is to be responsible for a fundamental reconstruction of our whole national education program, to enable every capable and industrious German to obtain higher education and subsequently introduction into leading positions.”
There’s a lesson in all of this. And no, it’s not that Democrats are an embodiment of evil as Hitler was. That is how Leftists like to portray President Trump. I’d actually prefer a political discourse in which no American politician is equated to Hitler, but the Left has compelled me to identify their hypocrisy.
Instead the lesson is this. While people on the Left like to portray conservatives in the Republican Party as Nazi-like figures, they need to take a long hard look in the mirror when it comes to their principles of governing. Left-wing Democrats must begin to understand that government cannot move mountains, that societal improvement begins with liberating its people, not empowering the state.
With few exceptions—the GOP no doubt has a bit of a “RINO” problem—conservatives and libertarians within the Republican Party have always had the concerns of the individual in mind when crafting policy. As politicians who remain stalwarts of individual liberty and the Constitution, they are the ones who can actually offer Americans a better deal.