Talk:Nazi Party

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Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Q:Why is the Nazi Party labeled a far-right party? They called themselves socialists, so should they be left-wing?
A: Almost all historical and present-day academic literature places the Nazi Party on the far-right of the traditional left-right spectrum, which in turn is the most common short-form classification used in political science. The Nazis themselves attacked both left-wing and traditional right-wing politicians and movements in Germany as being traitors to Germany. While the Nazi regime's economic policies are very different from those of present-day right-wing parties that adhere to classical liberal or neoliberal positions (which advocate, e.g., a highly deregulated, privatized economic environment), Nazi economic policy was typical of the early to mid twentieth century far-right, and indeed most political currents of the time, in that it embraced interventionist economics. The Nazi Party absorbed the far-right reactionary monarchist and nationalist German National People's Party into its membership in 1933. The Nazi Party also held good relations with openly right-wing political movements in Europe, such as the Spanish Confederation of the Autonomous Right, whose leader Gil-Robles was a guest at the 1933 Nazi Party Nuremberg rally and sought to model his movement upon the Nazi Party.
Q: If socialism is mainly left-wing and they called themselves socialists in their name, why is this being ignored?
A: Historically several right-wing figures used the term "socialism" to mean something very different from what would be understood by traditional left-wing socialism, referring simply to the broader concept of collectivism and anti-individualism. For instance, "conservative socialism" was promoted by Austrian political figure Metternich. The prominent French reactionary monarchist Charles Maurras famously said "a socialism liberated from the democratic and cosmopolitan element fits nationalism well as a well made glove fits a beautiful hand". Mauras' views influenced fascism. Oswald Spengler's ideal of "Prussian Socialism" directly influenced Nazism, and Spengler promoted it as a member of the far-right Conservative Revolutionary movement.
Q: Were the Nazis actually a capitalist movement?
A: The answer depends on the context and definition of capitalism. Hitler in private was just as opposed to the ethos of capitalism as he was in public as a politician, he regarded the capitalist ethos as being self-centred individualism that was incompatible with patriotism. Furthermore in both public and private Hitler regarded capitalism as being created by the Jews for their own interests. Hitler promoted effectively mercantilism through policies of colonial expansion in Eastern Europe to gain access to natural resources to make Germany self-sufficient and no longer dependent on international trade. The Nazis in public and in private held contempt for bourgeois culture in liberal capitalist societies - as they associated such bourgeois culture with a cosmopolitan, liberal, and decadent lifestyle that was incompatible with the Nazis' ideal of a nationalist martial ethic of disciplined soldiers who were collectively committed to the Fatherland above any individual interest. So ideologically, Nazism held strong antipathy to capitalism. However at the same time Hitler and the Nazis endorsed private property and private enterprise and did not challenge the market economy, which was important to their accrual of power because it avoided antagonizing industrialists and aristocrats. The Nazis themselves claimed that "true socialism" did not involve the Marxian opposition to private property. But if capitalism is defined in a minimum way as involving the support of the existence of private property, private enterprise and a market economy, then from that minimum definition, the Nazis could be considered as endorsing a capitalist economy.
Q: Did Nazi Germany invent universal health care?
A: No, Nazi Germany did not invent universal health care. It was first implemented in Germany, but in the German Empire under Otto von Bismarck in the 1880s. Bismarck implemented universal health care in response to address growing demands for social welfare policies by socialist movements such as the Social Democratic Party of Germany, as well as studies and government reports that declared the need for universal health care.
Q: Are there people who still support the Nazis?
A: Yes, they are called Neo-Nazis. They still exist even though the party, itself, is dissolved.
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Far-right definition and economic policy[edit]

There's no doubt that the Nazi Party was an extreme right-wing nationalist group in terms of social policy, but economically, not so much, to the point where analysis like the ones seen on Political Compass and even the WP page on Nazi Germany's economics suggest that, especially because of Hjalmar Schacht, there were aspects of their fiscal policy that were broadly Keynesian.

See: [1]

Should we specify in the "political position" section or remove it altogether? --Sunshineisles2 (talk) 18:23, 10 August 2015 (UTC)

That is a distortion of Nazi economic policy and assumes that right-wing governments would adopt the same policies regardless of circumstances. Whether or not a party was right-wing is something that is supposed to be determined in sources, not through synthesis of editors. TFD (talk) 18:53, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
Honestly, I would be suspicious of any categorization, far-right or otherwise -- I've been a silent advocate of removing the "position" parameter altogether, as I feel that politics of any form go beyond the petty and semi-binary categorization of left-right.--Sunshineisles2 (talk) 20:06, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
I would agree to removing the field in the info-box, since it provides more confusion than clarity. Just say that the ideology is Nazism. While they clearly were far right, thee field (which is not part of the original template) becomes confusing when discussing mainstream parties as for example some editors insist that liberal parties are center-left. TFD (talk) 20:17, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
On that last part, that may be because the way the word "liberal" is used varies in some countries, such as the United States. Dustin (talk) 20:27, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
Except that outside the U.S., ideology close to U.S. liberalism is normally seen as center. Usually too liberal parties include both what Americans call liberals and conservatives. TFD (talk) 22:20, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
It is so universally known as "far-right" that it maybe even defined it. Remember that Nazi Germany traded extensively with foreign (yes, American too) corporations and even had some of Germany's forced laborers produce for those companies. In fact, he was willing to allow nearly all trade that wasn't with/through Jews or communists. Nazis controlled the European Commission for WW1 Reparations (forgot its name) and Hitler never nationalized but rather employed companies like Volkswagen. I think you're confusing leftist with statist. (talk) 19:50, 20 August 2015 (UTC)
A Nazi propaganda poster. In English: "Marxism is the guardian angel of capitalism."
It is intellectually dishonest and transparently agenda-serving to place the Nazis on a polar left-right spectrum. This much is factual about the ideology of the Nazis: they opposed capitalism (see right), they opposed communism (see right), they labeled themselves as socialists (a characteristic of the political left by modern Western standards) and they labeled themselves as nationalists (a characteristic of the political right by modern Western standards). Let's keep Wikipedia neutral and honest. Remove the label and admit that the Nazis don't belong on an oversimplified left-right spectrum. Dontworryifixedit (talk) 21:43, 9 December 2015 (UTC)

Use of the word "Nazi"?[edit]

Surely the use of the word "Nazi" throughout this article and in other articles on similar subjects can't be justifiable as it was originally a term used by the political opponents of the National Socialists and not in their official documents. It then became a colloquial term for the party/movement in a number of languages. Yes, it is widely used but it is equivalent to referring to Communist parties as "commies" or "reds". I propose that apart from the initial statement "commonly referred to in English as the Nazi Party" and direct quotes that the use of the term "Nazi" should actually be replaced with "National Socialism" which is the correct term for the ideology/movement. (talk) 23:58, 20 January 2016 (UTC)

I agree that "Nazi" is an incorrect term in this case. I offer an alternative solution. Refer to it as the "NSDAP" or the "National Socialist Party." Your suggestion of "National Socialism" refer to the political ideology, not the specific party in question. -Anonymous — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:51, 22 February 2016 (UTC)

We use the terms commonly used in reliable sources. BTW lots of political descriptions began as terms of abuse: Whig, Tory, Liberal and in the U.S. Democrat and conservative. TFD (talk) 20:37, 22 February 2016 (UTC)

I feel that the term "Nazi" should be replaced by "NSDAP" because of the emotive social engineering aspect of the word obfuscates the truth that they were some kind of Socialists. However, the emotive term "Nazi" remains in common sources despite it being far from an objective overview word. This challenges Four Deuces excellent, persuasive point about "Tories" and "Whigs" once being derogatory. {{subst:unsigned:|12:28, 6 April 2016}}

Variety of English and formatting[edit]

The spelling and date formatting seem to be a mixture of US and European conventions. I was intending to do some minor copy-editing to fix other problems (commas, etc.). Any objections to standardising on British/European spelling and date conventions (apart from quotes etc., of course)? --Boson (talk) 02:07, 21 January 2016 (UTC)

  • --Any objections to standardising on British/European spelling and date conventions (apart from quotes etc., of course)?--Nope. Dave Dial (talk) 02:22, 21 January 2016 (UTC)
  • -No objection. Kierzek (talk) 12:47, 21 January 2016 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done --Boson (talk) 15:02, 21 January 2016 (UTC)

The word Aryan must be defined in the lead[edit]

It is a problem on wikipedia right now, that articles about Nazism and Nazi Germany are claiming they belived all Europeans or whites were a superior race. This is because the article about Aryans are claiming falsely that everyone and every nation defined Aryan as indo-european and western-asian. This defenition are not in line with what Hitler and the other national socialists thought about this word.

He even writes in Mein Kampf that it is hard to define Aryan, but it is usually described as a indo-german people who took controll over a part of India. In which it seems he wanted to use since it were an ancient name for Germans.

From my time at school and trough reading about the subject, there is no dubt that Hitler were speaking about a superior German race or Germanic race, this was what they though Aryan meant. While other Europeans, like Southern European were not as great, and the eastern Europeans were one of the lowest races.

This article in particular are helping to misinform the public, because the term isn't defined. (talk) 17:53, 2 July 2016 (UTC)

Please come up with a definition that you think is appropriate, being sure to have it well referenced, Hitler is a fine source to use for this purpose, and post it here. From her it can work its way into the article. Carptrash (talk) 18:05, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
I have a few good sources. From the Holocaust museum: "Germans and other Northern Europeans were the 'Aryans', a superior race". Another one: One from the Meriam-Webster Dictonary: Either indo-european, "a hypotetical people who spoke a indo-European language in India", Nordics (in reference to the Nordic cuntries), Caucasians with nordic characteristics or indo-Iranians.
In Mein Kampf Hitler writes that "Chamberlain belives Aryan and German to mean the same thing". When Hitler speaks of the real Aryans, the people who inhabited India, he writes about an Indo-German and Indo-Germanic conqest, the Aryans who conqered India were in his view (some scholars too) German or Germanic. He later writes: "no defenition of the word Aryan is acceptable", but that the term "Aryan" had become a synonym for indo-German. He seems to belive that Europe and America become what they did because of the Aryans, that would indicate he thinks the UK (Conqered by German tribes, Anglo-Saxons), USA (at that time were inhabited by Anglo-Saxons, a German tribe), Germany, France (when it were conqered by German tribes, Franks) were Germanic or partly. He seems to have a very mixed view on the Term in General. This is the version I used: (talk) 16:08, 4 July 2016 (UTC)
It seems to me that how it is handled in the lede is just fine. It is a link to Aryan race. That is where the Nazi definition or use of the term needs to be clarified. And I think that to some extent it is, although I have not delved into that article too much. Yet. Carptrash (talk) 17:56, 4 July 2016 (UTC)
You need a reliable secondary source for what the Nazis meant by Aryan. The dictionary is inadequate because Nazis may not have used the same definition, just as they did not with Jews. Hitler's writings are also indequate because it assumes that HItler was consistent in his definitions and all Nazis accepted them. The Holocaust Museum definition is correct but imprecise. Certainly Germans were Aryans, but it is unclear which other peoples were. Note too that Aryan was considered a racial or subracial group by mainstream anthropologists at the time, and that is probably what the Nazis meant, but you need a source that explains it. TFD (talk) 03:11, 9 July 2016 (UTC)
Hans F. K. Günther in his book “The Racial Elements of European History” (translated from the 2nd German edition, 1927, p.257) has only one listing in the index for “Aryan.” It is in “The Nordic Ideal” chapter. I think I need to quote a largish chunk to get the sense and then we can decide if there is something useable in it. Or not.
”Following the terms used by Gobineau and Chamberlain, we come here and there upon more or less clear conceptions of the need for keeping the ‘Germanic’ blood pure, or (following Lapouge) of keeping the ‘Ayran’ blood pure. ‘’’Then there is a footnote. It states’’’
Philology used formerly often gives the name of Ayran to the Indo-European languages; nowadays the term ‘Ayran’ is mostly applied only to the Indo-Persian branch of these. Racial investigations in the beginning sometimes called the (non-existing) white or Caucasian race Aryan; later the peoples of Indo-European speech were occasionally called Aryan; and finally the Nordic race also was termed Aryan. Today the term Aryan has gone out of scientific use and its use is not advisable, especially since in lay circles the word Aryan is current in still other meanings, and mostly with a very confused application to the peoples who do not speak Semitic languages; the ‘Semites’ are then opposed to the ‘Aryans.’ The term ‘Semites’ however, has been likewise given up in anthropology, since men and peoples of various racial descent speak Semitic tongues. (cp. on this the fourth chapter above).” Carptrash (talk) 03:57, 9 July 2016 (UTC)

The Nazis definition of 'Aryan' was both ambiguous and flexible, sometimes they even targeted those that they considered to be part of the so-called Aryan race. When the Nazis introduced the Nuremberg Laws in 1935 the term Aryan was not used but rather German or related blood, but like Aryan, it was not defined. All definitions the Nazis used for Aryan included all the European peoples, including the Slavs, who many Nazis (including Hitler) regarded as racially inferior to the Germans.

Eric Ehrenreich in his book The Nazi Ancestral Proof: Genealogy, Racial Science, and the Final Solution speaks about the problems the Nazis had when defining the word 'Aryan' on pages 9-11. Diemut Majer in her book "Non-Germans" Under The Third Reich also explains the same thing throughout the whole book. On p.63 "According to National Socialist racial doctrine, all European peoples belonged to the family of Aryans and were thus fundamentally "racially equivalent", that is, recognized as equal before the law." However, as explained throughout the book, despite being considered 'Aryan' by the law, the Nazis discriminated against those they considered to be foreign. Even though the Nazis knew that there was no such thing racially speaking as the Aryan race, they still continued to use the term in propaganda but for the majority of time in documents the term German or related blood was used.

Hitler himself personally considered the Germanic peoples to be 'Aryans'. The Nazis had problems defining the racial status of non-Germanic people such as Hungarians and Finns.--Enoch J Brown (talk) 18:50, 6 September 2016 (UTC)

May I also just elaborate on what's already been said, Christopher Hutton in his book Race and the Third Reich wrote a chapter called "The Myth of an Aryan Race", in the 'Introduction' (p.80) he stated:

The notion that Nazi race theorists promoted the notion of a superior Aryan race is deeply embedded in academic and popular perceptions of Nazism. The term 'Aryan' was widely used in Nazi Germany, and 'non-Aryan' became in many contexts a synonym for 'Jewish'. However, Nazi race theorists opposed the promotion of 'Aryan' as a racial concept. By 1935, the National Socialist regime had accepted that this use of the term was unscientific. Almost every academic commentary - outside specialist writings on race science in the Third Reich - fundamentally misrepresents the intellectual history of this question. The notion that the Nazis 'confused language with race' or Volk with Rasse in relation to the Aryan question is completely false.

So in essence it's actually very difficult to describe how the Nazis defined 'Aryan' when they couldn't even come up with a satisfactory one themselves.--Enoch J Brown (talk) 10:24, 9 September 2016 (UTC)

This user, Enoch J Brown, has been blocked as the latest sock of user:English Patriot Man. Kierzek (talk) 16:50, 12 September 2016 (UTC)

Request input on a projected change at beginning of the article[edit]

“…the Nazi Party (/ˈnɑːtsi/), was a political party in Germany that was active between 1920 and 1945 that practiced Nazism. Its predecessor, the German Workers' Party (Deutsche Arbeiterpartei; DAP), existed from 1919 to 1920.”

I would like to change this to: “It was founded as the German Workers’ Party in 1919 with 'National Socialism' being added to its name in 1920.” This was a simple name change which involved no change in formation or membership. It was the exact same entity. It would be more appropriate to refer to Drexler’s and Harrer’s small parties as “predecessor parties.” Because of the nature of this article, I am reluctant to make almost any change of substance without input from others. Such would be appreciated. Thank you.HistoryBuff14 (talk) 17:17, 14 August 2016 (UTC)

@HistoryBuff14: On the article for German Workers' Party, it says "the DAP was renamed the National Socialist German Workers' Party on February 24." This is sourced to page 87 of Ian Kershaw's Hitler: A Biography, where the relevant text reads, "Even in the hothouse of Munich politics, the big meetings of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP), as the movement henceforth called itself, were something different." So it looks like you're right: this reliable source claims that the movement remained structurally the same with the only difference being what it was called. I'm in favor of this but if it seems like it might be fraught, sure, let's let others weigh in. RunnyAmiga (talk) 17:28, 14 August 2016 (UTC)
But there's another problem: this isn't the only instance of Wikipedia treating the DAP as a separate entity from the NSDAP. The infobox here, the article I linked above, and the actual text in the history section all do the same thing. I'm wondering about rounding up everything that presumably needs to be corrected and it seems like a nightmare. RunnyAmiga (talk) 17:56, 14 August 2016 (UTC)
Yes, I see your point. The article, for example, on Karl Harrer also refers to DAP as the predecessor party to the NSDAP. There are other issues as well unless William Shirer’s early work was wrong as noted in The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. He states that the DAP was the result of the merger of Harrer’s and Drexler’s parties. Therefore, they should be listed as co-founders if this is true rather than Drexler as the sole founder as in the info box. Also, he states that Harrer (and not Drexler as also noted in the info box) was the first party chairman and remained so until Hitler started organizing larger meetings (I think sometime in 1920) which he objected to and notes in a footnote that Harrer also objected to Hitler’s virulent anti-Semitism and that he felt Hitler was alienating the working class and this was the actual reason why Harrer left the party. All of this is at odds with the article to some extent; and although I don’t know who is right, I find it difficult to believe that Shirer had been wrong about Harrer having been the first chairman as he gives some detail about why he resigned from the position.HistoryBuff14 (talk) 21:53, 14 August 2016 (UTC)
Reliable sources say that the DAP changed its name and adopted the 25 point program on 20 Feb, 1920, not that a new party was formed. Drexler and Harrer were both members of the DAP so either Shirer was wrong or we are misreading him. (I would not use his book as a source since there has been a lot of research since since then.) So we should not treat it as one party. The DAP article though can remain per WP:SPINOFF. It is not about a different party but about a specific period of the party's existence. TFD (talk) 22:55, 14 August 2016 (UTC)
I’m not certain I am understanding you. You begin: “Reliable sources say that the DAP changed its name and adopted the 25 point program on 20 Feb, 1920, not that a new party was formed” [emphasis mine for both] and then state: “So we should not treat it as one party” which seems blatantly contradictory. As for Harrer and Drexler both being members of DAP, Shirer does state such. (In fact, as I noted, effectively they co-founded it by the merger of their small parties.) Shirer does acknowledge that Drexler seems to have been the driving force, though without explaining why Harrer was the new party's first chairman and not Drexler. So I’m uncertain what your point is there.HistoryBuff14 (talk) 23:16, 14 August 2016 (UTC)
Drexler proposed the founding of the DAP in December, 1918; which was then formed on 5 January 1919. He was the one elected to lead the party as chairman, not Harrer. Harrer was only made "Reich Chairman", an honorary title. Per Kershaw who is a better authority and not dated as Shirer. It is fair to say, the Nazi Party (NSDAP) was the renamed successor of the DAP. I added another cite for clarity as to date of the name being changed. The party did change in other ways from its beginnings as it moved from a debating society, to a committee ruled party, to the party of the NSDAP, centered around Hitler as the authoritarian wheel in which all turned. The DAP was, as Zentner & Bedurftig state (along with others), a "precursor" of the NSDAP. (p. 343) So, it was more than a simple "renaming". Kierzek (talk) 01:17, 15 August 2016 (UTC)
I reread the applicable portion of Shirer’s book yesterday. Although it is a work replete with citations, he gives none when he is discussing the founding of DAP and what preceded it. I would guess he used verbal accounts, very possibly secondhand ones at that as he might not have been able to find a reliable source from that period. Therefore, I shall concede that he is probably not the best source in this regard, though any errors he might have made were inconsequential. I would have guessed (nothing more) that Drexler deferred to Harrer as the latter was well educated while the former was not and perhaps because Harrer had some funding from the crank Thule Society. But perhaps you are correct. I now think it is best to leave matters as they stand, so I withdraw my proposed change. Thanks for everyone’s input. This is what we are supposed to do here, discuss such matters civilly and in an educated manner. All too often that doesn’t happen, so I am appreciative.HistoryBuff14 (talk) 12:59, 15 August 2016 (UTC)
It has been a good discussion. I was thinking, although very similar, "precursor", might be a better word to use than "predecessor", for the lede sentence. Kierzek (talk) 15:14, 15 August 2016 (UTC)