March 26, 2004
Was Will Eigentlich Amerika?


In reference to Kio's Q about Tom Rove Strategy Number 2 vis a vis Goebbels:

Goebbels' theory (among others) was that a small lie can be dismissed, that the long term effects of them are small or even negative. He proposed instead that one has to lie boldly and directly in the face of demonstrable facts, such that the mind boggles and shuts down for a moment. In that moment, you can say just about anything you want, and it enters consciousness without room for judgement or doubt. With 500 dead since "peace was declared" in Iraq, I consider W making stupid jokes about not finding WMDs to be a good example of this. You can't believe what you're seeing, but you see it nonetheless. From there, anything goes.

Since we're on the topic, Goebbels had some interesting things to say about the United States of America. His 1939 speech Was Will Eigentlich Amerika? ("What Does America Really Want?") has a noteworthy line or two:

The enormous North American armaments industry is also calling up images of a coming war against the totalitarian governments for business reasons.

Also, I like to think about Goebbels' joke, apropos of the upcoming election:

It reminds one of the familiar joke. Two workers are halfheartedly trying to remove a paving stone. A passerby watches for a while, then grabs a pickax and yanks the stone out. One worker says to the other: "Well, sure, if you use force..."

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