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by Marc Jampole A group of rich industrialists are not happy with the direction in which the country is going, so they give money to support and develop a radical party to push their agenda for smaller government and lower taxes and regulation. But the fringe party they support gets into a position to subvert the democratic process and the economy. By the end, even the industrialists who funded them are worried about the actions taken by the suddenly powerful if still small party. Sounds familiar? What am I describing? Is it the United States in 2010-2013? Or could it be Germany in the late 1920s and early 1930s? The structural parallels between what has happened in the United States and what happened almost a century ago in Germany are uncanny. Now I’m not comparing the current state of our country to Nazi Germany, nor am I predicting that we are moving in Germany’s genocidal direction. Nor am I comparing the Tea Party Congressional representatives and senators to Hitler, although there are many similarities between the philosophies behind the two movements:
- Stress on traditional values.
- Hate of the current government.
- Nativism and distrust of foreigners.
- An underlying racism, which the Tea Party denies, but which can be detected in code language, occasional slip-ups, and irrational abhorrence of our mixed-race president.
- Willingness to subvert democratic processes.