Was the Nazi Party socialist?

by ImaLooser
Tags: nazi, party, socialist
ImaLooser is offline
Apr8-13, 07:43 AM
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The official name was the National Socialist Democratic Workers Party. However this is of no use. They certainly weren't democratic, so why should we believe they were socialist?

The party worked in the interests of workers by imposing price controls. The controls were on retail prices, so shopkeepers had to absorb the losses. Naziism was no friend to small business.

As to state ownership of business, the party did start an arms factory named after Hermann Goering. But generally they worked with existing private enterprise. So would that mean that they were not socialist?

Hitler was a pragmatist and had a record of using people for his purposes until they were no longer of any use, then disposing of them. I think this is what he was doing with private industry. The party was a radical one and opposed to all other institutions -- schools, churches, even marriage -- that might lead anyone away from the parties goals. It is also a fact that the party leadership was corrupt and incompetent. There was no chance that they could manage a factory, and I suspect that the Hermann Goering factory was not a useful one. So the party worked with private industry because that was the only way to get the production they needed for the war. Once the party was able to develop members who could be trusted to run the factories then they would have been seized. So in that sense party was socialist. But if the workers were no longer useful they too would have been discarded. The country certainly wasn't going to be run for the benefit of workers. So perhaps not. It depends on the exact definition of socialism one uses, and future actions of the party that never came to be.
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russ_watters is offline
Apr8-13, 07:51 AM
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Starting with the wiki on it, I'm sure there is plenty of discussion of the issue online:

Hitler didn't create the name and objected to it because he didn't want it confused with Marxist socialism. It is fascist and typically considered a right wing ideology, but I subscribe to the theory that the ends of the spectrum curve and join. After all, extreme socialism also has strong, militaristic national governments. In either case, all such extremist ideologies, in practice, are manipulated/utilized for the benefit of the leaders, so definitions can be loose.
SteamKing is offline
Apr8-13, 08:22 AM
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The German abbreviation for the Nazi party (NSDAP) translates to the National Socialist German Workers Party. There was nothing democratic about either the name of the party nor how it functioned.

ImaLooser is offline
Apr9-13, 12:42 AM
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Was the Nazi Party socialist?

Quote Quote by SteamKing View Post
The German abbreviation for the Nazi party (NSDAP) translates to the National Socialist German Workers Party. There was nothing democratic about either the name of the party nor how it functioned.

Oops, you are right. Silly me. I knew that.
BWV is offline
Apr9-13, 10:26 AM
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The 25-point Program of the NSDAP

We demand the unification of all Germans in the Greater Germany on the basis of the people's right to self-determination.

We demand equality of rights for the German people in respect to the other nations; abrogation of the peace treaties of Versailles and St. Germain.

We demand land and territory (colonies) for the sustenance of our people, and colonization for our surplus population.

Only a member of the race can be a citizen. A member of the race can only be one who is of German blood, without consideration of creed. Consequently no Jew can be a member of the race.

Whoever has no citizenship is to be able to live in Germany only as a guest, and must be under the authority of legislation for foreigners.

The right to determine matters concerning administration and law belongs only to the citizen.

Therefore we demand that every public office, of any sort whatsoever, whether in the Reich, the county or municipality, be filled only by citizens. We combat the corrupting parliamentary economy, office-holding only according to party inclinations without consideration of character or abilities.

We demand that the state be charged first with providing the opportunity for a livelihood and way of life for the citizens. If it is impossible to sustain the total population of the State, then the members of foreign nations (non-citizens) are to be expelled from the Reich.

Any further immigration of non-citizens is to be prevented. We demand that all non-Germans, who have immigrated to Germany since 2 August 1914, be forced immediately to leave the Reich.
All citizens must have equal rights and obligations.

The first obligation of every citizen must be to work both spiritually and physically. 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. Consequently we demand:

Abolition of unearned (work and labour) incomes. Breaking of debt (interest)-slavery.

In consideration of the monstrous sacrifice in property and blood that each war demands of the people, personal enrichment through a war must be designated as a crime against the people.

Therefore we demand the total confiscation of all war profits.

We demand the nationalisation of all (previous) associated industries (trusts).

We demand a division of profits of all heavy industries.

We demand an expansion on a large scale of old age welfare.

We demand the creation of a healthy middle class and its conservation, immediate communalization of the great warehouses and their being leased at low cost to small firms, the utmost consideration of all small firms in contracts with the State, county or municipality.

We demand a land reform suitable to our needs, provision of a law for the free expropriation of land for the purposes of public utility, abolition of taxes on land and prevention of all speculation in land.
We demand struggle without consideration against those whose activity is injurious to the general interest. Common national criminals, usurers, profiteers and so forth are to be punished with death, without consideration of confession or race.

We demand substitution of a German common law in place of the Roman Law serving a materialistic world-order.

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. The plans of instruction of all educational institutions are to conform with the experiences of practical life. The comprehension of the concept of the State must be striven for by the school [Staatsbuergerkunde] as early as the beginning of understanding. We demand the education at the expense of the State of outstanding intellectually gifted children of poor parents without consideration of position or profession.

The State is to care for the elevating national health by protecting the mother and child, by outlawing child-labor, by the encouragement of physical fitness, by means of the legal establishment of a gymnastic and sport obligation, by the utmost support of all organizations concerned with the physical instruction of the young.

We demand abolition of the mercenary troops and formation of a national army.

We demand legal opposition to known lies and their promulgation through the press. In order to enable the provision of a German press, we demand, that: a. All writers and employees of the newspapers appearing in the German language be members of the race; b. Non-German newspapers be required to have the express permission of the State to be published. They may not be printed in the German language; c. Non-Germans are forbidden by law any financial interest in German publications, or any influence on them, and as punishment for violations the closing of such a publication as well as the immediate expulsion from the Reich of the non-German concerned. Publications which are counter to the general good are to be forbidden. We demand legal prosecution of artistic and literary forms which exert a destructive influence on our national life, and the closure of organizations opposing the above made demands.

We demand freedom of religion for all religious denominations within the state so long as they do not endanger its existence or oppose the moral senses of the Germanic race. The Party as such advocates the standpoint of a positive Christianity without binding itself confessionally to any one denomination. It combats the Jewish-materialistic spirit within and around us, and is convinced that a lasting recovery of our nation can only succeed from within on the framework: The good of the state before the good of the individual.[11]

For the execution of all of this 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. The leaders of the Party promise, if necessary by sacrificing their own lives, to support by the execution of the points set forth above without consideration.
ImaLooser is offline
Apr10-13, 02:14 AM
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That's certainly a socialist program. They didn't actually practice it. Perhaps they would have if they had remained in power long enough.
arildno is offline
Apr10-13, 08:11 AM
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NSDAP was most definitely collectivist, and regarded state authority as the primary means to promote and defend that collectivism.
This latter point, the centrality of state authority in enforcing collectivism distinguishes NSDAP from those types of reactionary collectivisms that regarded guilds, nobles, and the individual patriarchs as the ones to streamline the population (i.e, pre-modern forms of collectivism).

However, NSDAP was certainly not egalitarian in mentality, neither relative to races, or how the economy ought to be regulated/administered. This is a factor that distinguishes it from at least the ideological pretense of other socialisms.
jim hardy
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Apr10-13, 08:57 AM
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You might find Albert Speer's memoir "Slave State" an interesting read.

It ran like any other bureaucracy - individuals competing for position and power.

Their goal was a "Slave State", a core of chosen people living a pastoral lifestyle supported by forced labor of their 'inferior' neighbors.
Does socialism include 'Some pigs are more equal than others....' ?

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