"In a regular sequence, new 'emergency decrees' appeared every six months, each yet again reducing salaries, pensions, social benefits, and finally even private wages and rates of interest. Each was the logical consequence of the last one, and each time Bruning [German Chancellor 1930-1932], clenching his teeth, imposed the painful logic." From: Defying Hitler: a memoir, by Sebastian Haffner, written in 1939, discovered by his son after his death, published in 2000
European Nazi Flag
© Unknown
The above haunting words were written by Sebastian Haffner in his 1930s memoirs as a young lawyer in Berlin who experienced first-hand the Nazi takeover.

The economic circumstances that Germans were subjected to seem an eerily relevant description of what we are experiencing today. History seems to be repeating itself as we encounter the current repetitive fiscal emergencies and imposition of 'austerity measures' ad-nauseum. If you listen carefully to the emotional, fatalistic language of 'desperate' politicians, you'll hear a not-so-faint echo of the vitriol of the Third Reich's infamous chancellor.

Through Government media agents, we're told "we need to make sacrifices" or the world and everything in it, will implode and die a painful, agonising death. The new 'emergency decrees' of our times all sound necessary in the 'life-raft' manner they are announced. New legislation or amendments are touted as the saviours of global security, fiscal responsibility or financial stability, but the true, freedom-crushing impact of a few carefully chosen, ambiguous words on a legislative manuscript is only fully understood when it is far too late as Haffner carefully explicates.

The U.S. seems well on its way down the road of no return. Every few months or so, panic-stricken markets have screamed for Economic 'stimulus', quantitative easing or FED intervention to rescue the falling stocks, plunging shares and evaporating confidence. Geithner, Bernanke and Obama can save an America that doesn't need saving by throwing dollars from helicopters. TV anchors at FOX laugh at the brutality of the military-hardware-equipped police, discredit the Occupy movement protesters and anyone questioning the mandated economic prescriptions, while new 'emergency decrees' detain, indefinitely without trial, anyone who protests against the corrupt corporatocracy.

The Eurozone has lead, or replicated, the Wall Street death march; country after country has been picked off by the Goldman Sachs-JP Morgan economic-sniper team. Hyper-inflated debt-rates spew eruptions of panic with their downgrades, and venomous rating agencies collude to kick the fallen while they are down. Meanwhile, neglected technocratic insiders lurk in the shadows, waiting to fill the void left by exiting corporate figure-heads as they run for the hills.

The papers cry 'Eurogeddon' while media pundits envision deserted, litter-strewn streets as they practice for their future positions as sandwich board men declaring the 'end' to be 'nigh'. Sarkozy and Merkel meet behind closed doors and within a few hours draft up new measures to the EU treaty. The speed is a dead giveaway that these measures were drawn up by Wall Street-directed bureaucrats long ago. They can save a Europe that doesn't need saving by bringing it closer together, centralising the power structure, stripping debt-ridden nations of sovereignty and transferring budgetary control to Brussels. Or so they tell us. But with such financial dictatorship (for that is what they propose), the new United States of Europe will be free to impose the same tyrannical laws upon its member states as those that the United States of America recently legislated in its 'Defence' spending bill.

In the UK, chancellor Osborne and PM David Cameron's Propaganda Media outlets re-frame the new 'emergency' in terms of a new enemy: the public sector workers whose pensions are currently in the cross-hairs. How dare they stand up for their rights?! As if taking his cue from the Lewis Prothero character in the movie V-for-Vendetta, Top-Gear pundit (and contender for public personality idiot of the decade) Jeremy Clarkson declared that he would "take them [the protesters] out into the streets and shoot them in front of their families". His fascist outburst on BBC TV provoked 30,000 complaints and serves the purpose of further dividing a browbeaten and confused populace.

Hitler chose Jews, Gypsies and gays to be the common enemy that Germans should rally against. In the Bush era, after the Reichstag fire that was the 9/11 attacks, the 'war on Muslims' became the equivalent of the Nazis' 'war on the Jews'. A decade on from 9/11, Muslims are still being persecuted and demonised by unquestioning, unthinking, obedient readers of Rupert Murdoch's empire of intellectual trash, but increasingly, the focus of this war against the people is turning to a 'war on the so-called 99%'. Protests, riots and popular 'occupations' are occurring throughout the world as the people show their disgust at the egregious corruption in high public and private places, but still, the majority choose to merely watch nonchalantly from the tenuous safety of their living rooms. Can we blame them?
After all that, I do not see that one can blame the majority of Germans who, in 1933, believed that the Reichstag fire was the work of the Communists. What one can blame them for, and what shows their terrible collective weakness of character clearly for the first time during the Nazi period, is that this settled the matter. With sheepish submissiveness the German people accepted that, as a result of the fire, each one of them lost what little personal freedom and dignity was guaranteed by the constitution; as though it followed as a necessary consequence. If the Communists had burned down the Reichstag, it was perfectly in order that the Government took 'decisive measures'! ibid
Haffner's memoirs offer a powerful insight into how normal, every-day folk became rotten to the core, how the decisions individuals make on an everyday basis have ramifications far beyond the initial, seemingly innocuous, mistake of just 'going with the flow'. We are faced with choices everyday: Where we spend our money, where we bank, who we spend our time with and how we invest our precious energy. Along with reading books on psychopathy and Ponerology, 'Defying Hitler' provides insight as to how we can protect ourselves from being swept up into the, as yet uncharted, territory of a global psychopathic dystopia. As we wake up to the new, dead world around us of collapsed living standards and continuing insane, imperialistic Wars of aggression, there is no reason for anyone to be in the dark about 'how it came to this'. The deceptive justifications that are offered for the slaughter of innocents and the loss of our collective humanity, appear to be very effective at keeping most people apathetic. The sad fact of the matter is that the reality that most people are too afraid to confront is just as disturbing as the world-view that the Nazi's created for the German people over 70 years ago.

When we look back at what happened in Germany and the conditions that lead to the rise of Hitler and the Nazis, it is with the warm reassurance that those terrifying events of the past will never repeat themselves. I can remember visiting Auschwitz almost twenty years ago: As I looked at the results of the pathology of Nazism with both horror and a distinct feeling of unreality, It seemed unimaginable to me that normal people could allow, let alone take part in such barbaric behaviour.

Today, I often wonder what future generations, assuming there will be any, will say about the current period in our history? I fear it will be viewed with similar horror and a similar forgetfulness that history really does have a strong tendency to repeat itself. I see children in schools, learning about the seemingly bizarre misfortunes of technologically advanced and prospering societies collapsing into their own footprints under the entropic weight of a global fascist regime.

But does it really have to be so bleak and dystopic? A part of me still hopes that the oligarchs and pathocratic ruling elite will be overcome, somehow, by the world-wide popular revolt that appears to be gaining momentum. But time is running out for many members of 'the 99%' to awaken and change the history of our future.