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Huckabee Stokes Fear With Nazi Gun Control Comparison

512px-Gov-Huckabee-001

This story is a few days old, but in light of the persistent fear tactics from the Right to crash and burn any and all attempts at gun safety legislation, it’s still relevant…

The National Memo

Pastor-politician Mike Huckabee continues to stoke fear and paranoia regarding the sensible gun safety measures proposed in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting that killed 20 children and six adults, the latest gun-related massacre that occurred because of what many consider to be lax gun laws in America, compared to other developed nations.

On his radio show Wednesday afternoon, Huckabee responded to a caller who repeated the lie that Adolf Hitler and the Nazis turned Germany from a democracy into a dictatorship by registering and collecting guns, by saying:

“When you bring that up there are people that get crazy on us. They’ll start saying, ‘oh there you go, comparing to the Nazis.’ And I understand the reaction. But it’s the truth. You cannot take people’s rights away if they are resisting and have the means to resist. But once they’re disarmed and the people who are trying to take over have all the power — not just political, not just financial — but they have the physical power to domesticate us and to subjugate us to their will, there’s not a whole lot we can do about it, other than just plan to die in the course of resistance…in every society and culture where dictators take over, one of the things they have to do is get control of the military and police and ultimately all the citizens and make sure the citizens are disarmed and can’t fight in the streets. Gosh I hope it doesn’t come to that.”

Besides making a slippery-slope argument that modest gun reform will somehow lead to weapon confiscation and a Nazi-style dictatorship, Huckabee and the caller display a dangerously ignorant reading of history regarding gun laws in Nazi Germany. Mother JonesSalon, and other publications have refuted the oft-repeated assertion among gun rights absolutists that gun control allowed Hitler’s rise to power and made the Holocaust possible.

First, it is worth noting that other developed, democratic nations with stronger gun laws, such as Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan, Australia and others, did not see a dictator rise to power and “domesticate” and “subjugate” their people when they enacted new gun measures. In fact, their democracies are still intact with the people still deciding important issues peacefully through the ballot box. What these countries have done is made their societies safer by decreasing gun violence.

Now back to the right wing’s seemingly favorite comparison when discussing anything President Obama has proposed to help the American people — Nazis.

There he goes again.  Mike Huckabee is just one of many politicians playing the fear card against President Obama and gun control in general…

The National Memo

The reality is that the Weimar Republic following World War I actually had tougher gun laws than the Nazi regime, in part to disarm the violent extremists causing havoc, like the paramilitary SA brownshirts. The Nazi Weapon Law of 1938 actually loosened gun restrictions, except for Jews and other persecuted minorities.

But there were only 214,000 Jews living in Germany when World War II started and between 160,000 and 180,000 were murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators. That is a small fraction of the six million Jews from other countries who were murdered and who wouldn’t have been subject to the Nazi gun laws. The mighty Russian army lost more than 10 million soldiers fighting the Wermacht on the Eastern Front, so it is unrealistic to think that a Jewish armed uprising in Eastern Europe would have beaten back the German military machine. That is why many say a strong Israeli army is so important to preventing another holocaust, the reasoning being that a Jewish state with a modern military is the only match for a genocidal force like the Nazis.

In reality, it is the Tea Party “patriots” intimidating people with loaded assault rifles, Republican efforts to suppress the vote, and right-wing radio hosts like Huckabee stoking fear and paranoia that more closely resemble the tactics used by Hitler’s Nazis to gain power.

Gun control and Second Amendment-analysis website GunCite concludes the following in a story titled “The Myth of Nazi Gun Control”: “There are no lessons about the efficacy of gun control to be learned from the Germany of the first half of [the 20th] century. It is all too easy to forget the seductive allure that fascism presented to all the West, bogged down in economic and social morass. What must be remembered is that the Nazis were master manipulators of popular emotion and sentiment, and were disdainful of people thinking for themselves. There is the danger to which we should pay great heed. Not fanciful stories about Nazis seizing guns.”

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Fox News Claims Solar Won’t Work in America Because It’s Not Sunny Like Germany

“It’s always sunny in Germany”

Can they really be that dense over at Fox News or are they just playing to their low-information base?

Slate

Thanks to Fox News and its expert commentators, millions of Americans now understand the real, hidden reason why Germany’s solar-energy industry is so much further along than ours. Turns out it has nothing to do with the fact that Germany’s government has long supported the industry far more generously, with policies like feed-in tariffs that stimulate investment in green technologies. No, the real reason is much simpler, explained a trio of journalists on Fox & Friends: It’s always sunny in Germany!

“The industry’s future looks dim,” intoned host Gretchen Carlson at the beginning of the segment, which was preserved for posterity by the liberal blog Media Matters for America.  She and her co-host went on to ridicule Obama’s “failed” solar subsidies, adding, “The United States simply hasn’t figured out how to do solar cheaply and effectively. You look at the country of Germany, it’s working out great for them.” Near the end of the segment, it occurred to Carlson to ask her expert guest, Fox Business reporter Shibani Joshi, why it might be that Germany’s solar-power sector is doing so much better. “What was Germany doing correct? Are they just a smaller country, and that made it more feasible?” Carlson asked.

Joshi’s jaw-dropping response: “They’re a smaller country, and they’ve got lots of sun. Right? They’ve got a lot more sun than we do.” In case that wasn’t clear enough for some viewers, Joshi went on: “The problem is it’s a cloudy day and it’s raining, you’re not gonna have it.” Sure, California might get sun now and then, Joshi conceded, “but here on the East Coast, it’s just not going to work.”

Gosh, why hasn’t anyone thought of that before? Wouldn’t you think that some scientist, somewhere, would have noticed that the East Coast is far less sunny than Central Europe and therefore incapable of producing solar power on the same scale?

You would—if it were true. As Media Matters’ Max Greenberg notes, it isn’t. Not even remotely. According to maps put out by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, virtually the entirety of the continental United States gets more sun than even the sunniest part of Germany. In fact, NREL senior scientist Sarah Kurtz said via email, “Germany’s solar resource is akin to Alaska’s,” the U.S. state with by far the lowest annual average of direct solar energy.

Solar resources: United States, Germany, Spain

I look forward to Fox News’ correction. Meanwhile, enjoy toggling between the video above and the map below and shaking your head.

 

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Fox’s Nazi fetish: Beck, O’Reilly, others repeatedly invoke Nazi imagery

Media Matters  reports: 

Led by Glenn Beck — who was once condemned by the Anti-Defamation League for saying Al Gore used “the same tactic” as Adolf Hitler — Fox News personalities have frequently invoked Nazi Germany in their political commentary, often comparing progressives to Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, and the Nazi “brownshirts.”

Beck regularly invokes Nazis, Hitler, Goebbels, other Nazi imagery

Beck: Obama advisers show “the kind of thinking that … eventually led to the Holocaust.” On his October 5 radio show, Beck said that statements by Obama advisers John Holdren, Ezekiel Emanuel and Cass Sunstein indicate “the kind of thinking that led to … the extermination program that eventually led to the Holocaust.”

Beck likened reporting about him to “what Goebbels did.” Complaining on the August 27 edition of his radio show that ABC reported a statement by Beck that blacks don’t own Martin Luther King without also noting that he also said whites don’t own Abraham Lincoln, Beck said: “You know what? I’m gonna get a lot of heat for this, but stand in line. That’s what [Nazi propagandist Joseph] Goebbels did. That’s what Goebbels did. The truth didn’t matter.”

Beck equates children singing about Obama with “Hitler Youth.” On the June 17 edition of his radio show, Beck said that children singing about Obama was “the playbook of the progressives from … the former regime in Germany, the Third Reich.” Beck added, “This is Hitler Youth.”

Beck: Putting “the common good” first “exactly the kind of talk that led to the death camps in Germany.” Attacking criticism of him by Jewish Funds for Justice’s Simon Greer, Beck asserted on his May 28 radio show that Greer’s comments about putting “human kind and the common good” first “is exactly the kind of talk that led to the death camps in Germany,” adding, “[a] Jew, of all people, should know that.”

Beck: “frightening similarities” between Sunstein, Goebbels. On the May 27 edition of his radio show, Beck claimed there were “frightening similarities” between Cass Sunstein and Goebbels.

Beck: “You can’t just change the law” to raise BP’s liability cap; “Is that what we fought the Nazis for?” On his May 4 radio show, discussing a reported proposal to retroactively increase liability limits to cover the costs of the Gulf oil spill, Beck responded: “Did we go and fight Germany for this? Is that what we fought the Nazis for? Is that why those millions of people died?”

Beck: Progressives use “democratic elections” to push dictators — “Hitler, ‘democratically elected.’ “ On the April 28 edition of his Fox News show, Beck stated that progressives use “democratic elections” to push dictators, then stated, “You’ll hear this when they talk about the ‘democratically elected’ leader of Iran; the democratic leader Chavez, ‘democratically elected,’ you know; Castro, ‘democratically elected’; Hitler – ‘democratically elected.’ “

Beck: “Progressives build the structure that a communist, a Marxist, a Nazi would love to have.” On the April 22 edition of his radio show, Beck stated that “[p]rogressives build the structure that a communist, a Marxist, a Nazi would love to have.”

Beck invoked “first they came for the Jews” poem to respond to ad boycotts. On the April 8 edition of his Fox News show, Beck portrayed ad boycotts of his show as being orchestrated by the Obama White House in order to “destroy” his “career” and “silence” him, adding: “Is there absolutely no chance whatsoever that you might be a target at some point in the future? What’s that poem? First they came for the Jews, and I stayed silent?”

Beck invokes Nazis to attack worker ID cards: “It was only one of the first things that Hitler did.” On the March 9 edition of his radio show, Beck discussed a proposal by Sens. Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Lindsay Graham (R-SC) to implement national ID cards for workers and said, “It was only one of the first things that Hitler did.”

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