Originally posted by krotzkrotz
I agree with you leveller, but i tend to differentiate between the official nazi propaganda/doctrines, which were more "humane", and the prussian
militaristic reality of persecution and absolute social ordering.
Are you sure you've not got that topsy turvy, dude?
Hitler saw the Prussian mindset and way of running things as being outdated and lax. He believed that their system of government was open to abuse by
"enemies of the state". His idea was to bring in a far more controlled order under his brand of Nazism.
As you can see, he saw Prussian propaganda as a sad joke that was ineffectual and damaging to it's own people through way of being not strong enough
and sending out mixed messages.
Hitler wrote that it was the weak Prussian government who were responsible for Germany losing WW1. The interesting thing is that he didn't blame
their defeat in war for the collapse of Germany afterwards. He saved that "honour" for the Jews and Marxists as they had manipulated the Prussian
He therefore sought to clear away the weak Prussian way of governing the country and to replace it with his own authoritarian brand of Nazism. It was
a vastly more despotic and controlling force than anything that had gone before. It could be argued that some remnant of Prussian mentality remained
in the Nazi Party once Hitler took power, but Hitler was known for surrounding himself with his own people. He cleared out most of those whom he saw
as being of Prussian outlook precisely because he blamed them for being indirectly responsible for the failures of the past.
We then move onto his propaganda aims and how he intended to exert authority:
"Anyone who wants to win the broad masses must know the key that opens the door to their heart. Its name is not objectivity (read weakness), but will
and power. The soul of the people can only be won if along with carrying on a positive struggle for our own aims, we destroy the opponent of these
Hitler also claimed that propaganda had to be cruder. He claimed that propaganda could only be aimed at either the masses or the intelligensia, but
that neither of these two sections of society could understand the propaganda aimed at the other. It was therefore better to just aim at one side and
gain their following, than to risk losing both over a confused message. He chose the masses. Because he deemed them to be less intelligent, he
believed that the message should be more brutal. Obviously, if you control the masses, you can control nearly everything, but by neglecting the
intelligensia propaganda and giving out the wrong message to them, they became a possible threat. Not only that, but propaganda aimed at the masses
was deemed to be easier to create. The intelligensia would analyse any message aimed at them, whereas a message thrown to the masses is generally
short and sweet and once it catches on it spreads like a virus. A cruder message will be easily digestible as long as it is delivered properly.
This could be the main reason why Hitler decided to persecute Freemasonry. Freemason's Lodges were deemed to hold many intelligensia and they could
see the Nazi propaganda purely for what it was - a means to gain control and restrict freedom of action and thought: everything that Freemasonry
It's an interesting fact that whenever a despotic regime takes over a nation, it normally starts out with a massive propaganda thrust at the masses
and Freemasonry is normally one of the first organisations that is persecuted - the Soviet Union and the Middle East are just two examples. It seems
that many later dictators learnt from Hitler's words. Pol Pot in Cambodia didn't take any such chances of dissent from the propaganda neglected side
of society and went even further - he decided to execute all
intelligensia and even the wearing of spectacles was enough to have you
To illustrate how Hitler decided to neglect propaganda aimed at the intelligensia and his low opinion of them, we have these statements.
"The so called 'intelligentsia' always looks down with a really limitless condescension on anyone who has not been dragged through the obligatory
schools and had the necessary knowledge pumped into him. The question has never been: What are the man's abilities? but: What has he learned? To
these 'educated' people the biggest empty-head, if he is wrapped in enough diplomas, is worth more than the brightest boy who happens to lack these
costly envelopes. And so it was easy for me to imagine how this 'educated' world would confront me, and in this I erred only in so far as even then
I still regarded people as better than in cold reality they for the most part unfortunately are."
"What the intelligentsia - or those who today unfortunately often go by that name - what they need is not propaganda but scientific instruction."
"Once we understand how necessary it is for propaganda to be adjusted to the broad mass, the following rule results:
It is a mistake to make propaganda many-sided, like scientific instruction, for instance."
Hitler does seem to have discovered another problem with Freemasonry above. Freemasonry teaches it's members to study the hidden meanings of science
and nature. In effect, to look beyond science - one of the effects of this is to actually create scientific theory as well as spiritual. Freemasonry
has undeniably had members who have been in possession of some of the brightest scientific minds ever. It was therefore very hard for Hitler to find a
way to educate people in a subject to which his "students" already had superior knowledge. So although Hitler may have had a plan on how to deal
with the "public" intelligensia, it would have been a useless effort when implemented on the Masonic intelligensia. He had a society containing
intelligensia who were immune to any coercion and aware of his plans of control - in effect, they were outside of his sphere of psychological
influence. Therefore, the only safe way to deal with Freemasonry was to dispose of it.
"Propaganda must be adjusted to the broad masses in content and in form, and its soundness is to be measured exclusively by its effective result. In
a mass meeting of all classes it is not that speaker who is mentally closest to the intellectuals present who speaks best, but the one who conquers
the heart of the masses."
The brand of control used was not Prussian in it's origins. It was part of Hitler's concept of National Socialism and is highlighted by his
"From the basic ideas of a general folkish world conception the National Socialist German Workers' Party takes over the essential fundamental
traits, and from them, with due consideration of practical reality, the times, and the available human material as well as its weaknesses, forms a
political creed which, in turn, by the strict organizational integration of large human masses thus made possible, creates the precondition for the
victorious struggle of this world view."
Hitler saw victory only through strict control of the masses. Controlling them was the key to everything. The intelligensia could be concentrated upon
once the obeyance of the masses had been gained. But he only had the means "instruct" some
of the intelligensia and indoctrinate them, so the
others outside of his power had to be disposed of before they created a threat to his dominance. It was therefore necessary to create a new propaganda
and a new creed of social order and it did not reflect or directly draw upon anything that had gone before, as he believed that all the prior Prussian
philosophies were indirectly responsible for Germany's sorry plight. He therefore created the philosophy we see in Mein Kampf and then put it into
practice. And it was far more inhumane and controlling than anything that a Prussian mindset, society or government had ever inflicted on the German
people, indeed the world, as many tyrants have put Hitler's philosophy into practice and destroyed millions of lives since. To control the people,
Hitler believed that you had to control their minds - what could be worse than that?
[edit on 7-1-2005 by Leveller]