Video: Hitler Was All the Rage in 1932

Here’s a short clip (with a daring little pun buried inside) from one of the new episodes of my TV show, airing now across the country on public television and online in the Watch the TV Show section of my website.

We had a fascinating time filming the Nazi Documentation Center in Hitler’s favorite city, Nürnberg. It’s fascinating (and, hopefully, instructive) to think of the tenor of those turbulent times in Germany and how Hitler came to power. His specialty: huge rallies, stoking the fears of angry masses (especially fears of minorities), and a dumbed-down message that repeated lies and insults until his followers started shouting them back. He had a passion for constructing buildings as bombastic as his speeches.

To this day, Germans ask: How could this have happened? Hitler was a master of media and the mass hypnosis of the German nation. His populist promises (coming on the heels of tough economic times) led to catastrophe. One positive that came from this: to this day, Germany works to make its electorate not dumbed-down, but smarter. Perhaps another positive: that we might take the lessons history wants to teach us a little more seriously.


13 Replies to “Video: Hitler Was All the Rage in 1932”

  1. I had noticed some disturbing tendencies that seemed better suited to Nazi Germany than the US – barring any press that doesn’t say what he wants them to, stirring up discrimination among his followers, promising to lock up his political rival, etc.

  2. Thankfully, real Adolf Hitler’s are rare, and hopefully Trump is no more than a Berlusconi. Still, it’s hard not to look at policy proposals that include exacting vengeance against journalists who criticize him and suing his own sexual assault victims and not see the makings of a tyrant. His open admiration of the most wicked dictators of the modern world is similarly unsettling. Even right leaning moderates like myself have no qualms whatsoever voting for Hillary in that context.

  3. “His specialty: huge rallies, stoking the fears of angry masses (especially fears of minorities), and a dumbed-down message that repeated lies and insults until his followers started shouting them back.”

    Wow, not even pretending to be anything but a shill for Hillary Clinton. Hillary doesn’t lie? Hillary doesn’t spew insults and whip up mindless supporters to repeat those lies? Clearly you have smoked too much pot in your lifetime.

    We get it. You’ve made your point. This is nothing but partisan propaganda worthy of Joseph Goebbels. I hate to break it to you Mr. Steves but not every Trump supporter is an uneducated mouth-breathing xenophobe. Nor are all Clinton supporters smart educated progressives. It’s really sad to see just how far you’ve fallen.

  4. Choosing between DT and HRC is like trying to decide whether you want to die by taking poison or jumping off a cliff. Either way, the result will be bad….worse with Adolf Trump, but Hillary’s baggage would totally fill a 747. It is a shame that that was the best either party could come up with!

  5. Study WWI and Europe and Germany until the rise of Hitler.. then it makes more sense. Hitler needed a blame and Jewish people had been blamed for centuries. This “modern” time of history, which it is if you go back to Greek and Roman as early, is so important as it leads into today.
    Political comment…”Trump is no where near as intelligent as Hitler, I don’t love Hitler, but please learn history with an open mind.
    BTW, RS, Now I must go back to Nurnberg.. Did a river cruise and did not have enough time… Looking forward to your Luther shows.

  6. Thank you Rick for keeping this up. I don’t always agree with you for over 15 years, but in this case I cannot for the life of me understand why half this country does not realize how dangerous a man Donald Trump is! Especially older folks who lived through our countries troubles with Hitler with Russia. This is not funny or ridiculous! I have traveled all over the world and am not a fearful person at all, but this for the last year has been different than anything else World wide I have ever ever experienced. This man will put us in peril. Many politicians including Richard Nixon do things because they are trying to further their career’s but are public servants that do their job to help America. Donald Trump is a mentally ill person who’s objectives have nothing to do with as I get sick “Making America Great Again” This is a great country, go to Third world countries and try to justify why America is doing bad and is an Awful place to live. Are we becoming this ridiculously spoiled society that we cannot see that we are a great proud incredible country and this maniac, human wrecking ball is bringing us down and embarrassing us to the rest of the world and ourselves!

  7. When I was reading Rick’s recent blog posts from his Best of Europe tour, I couldn’t help but think, “Oh, but the political blog posts will be surfacing again soon!” And here we are…I’ll keep reading the posts but will steer clear of the comments if they start getting nasty. 6 days until the election is over. Hallelujah!!

  8. The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (and women!) to do nothing. We cannot ignore what the rise of Donald trump means. Thanks, Rick, for taking this stand. As a traveler extraordinaire, you’ve seen and understood a little more history than many of us. If there was ever an example of how travel is broadening, a visit to Hitler’s Nazi temple is one of them.

  9. When you try to say that people who want to stop the terrorist with realistic strength are the terrorists then you become the same dupe that “Peace In Our Time” Chamberlin was Back in 1938 or 1939 at Munich. When Mussolini and then Stalin saw the way the Western leaders behaved they eventually joined what they thought would be the winning side. When the so called “war monger” Churchill took over it was the beginning of the end for Hitler.

  10. Rick, the problem in Germany was the centralization power in a political elite. That is why the founders separated and limited the powers of the federal government. When you, and other bigger government advocates, disparage the Constitution, you put us all at the same risk Germany tragically endured during the 1933 through 1945. You encouraged taking apart those Constitutional safeguards when Barack Obama was elected. Now, you worry that Donald Trump will use the unconstitutional usurpation of power. I hope you wise up and support limiting the federal government. By the way, Donald Trump is a bigger government guy himself so we all have something to worry about. Hopefully, Trump will limit his use of power to getting rid of the many bad laws and regulations promulgated during Obama, Bush, and Clinton.

  11. My mother grew up in Nazi Germany and just passed away this year. She makes that same comparison. The country is scared now that he wants to appoint a white supremicist as co chief of staff.

    Why are we still counting votes, they have 4 million uncounted in California, how many in other states?

Comments are closed.