Why all the Nazis and Hitlers?

John Derbyshire notes that today Nazis are everywhere. Everybody our rulers find objectionable, including both sides in the Ukraine war, are Nazis. He says it’s “because they are mentally lazy and view the world in terms of simplified narratives.”

To my mind it’s less laziness than an extremely limited understanding of what’s real. As they say, ideas have consequences.

Our rulers reject traditional standards, natural law, and transcendent goods. They accept J. S. Mill’s utilitarian view that “desirable” is the same as “desired.” That means that the goal of government and all action is getting what’s wanted. For them that’s basic rationality and no other view is possible. They also believe that all wants of all persons are equally wants and so have an equal claim to satisfaction. Egalitarian hedonism thus becomes the moral standard.

Since they can’t conceive a standard of the good other than what’s wanted, the only alternative they can imagine is the view that the desires of some people provide the moral standard. The only imaginable alternative to their view, then, is that there are masters who should rule absolutely, with others treated as tools or raw materials without rights of any kind.

That, combined with their sense that connections like race, sex, and social hierarchy really do work as binding forces, gives them their understanding of Nazism. So it makes sense for them to see Nazism – absolute ruthless rule by a master race – as the sole possible alternative to their view. If you’re not with them, you’re a Nazi.

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