Godwin’s Law be damned: Authoritarian societies mirror each other

There would be no such thing as Godwin’s Law if comparing things to Nazi Germany wasn’t commonplace. Nonetheless, this section from “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich” struck me as eerily familiar:

No one who has not lived for years in a totalitarian land can possibly conceive how difficult it is to to escape the dread consequences of a regime’s calculated and incessant propaganda. Often in a German home or office or sometimes in a casual conversation with a stranger in a restaurant, a beer hall, a cafe, I would meet with the most outlandish assertions from seemingly educated and intelligent persons. It was obvious they were parroting some piece of nonsense they had heard on the radio or read in the newspapers. Sometimes one was tempted to say as much, but on such occasions one was met with such a stare of incredulity, such a shock of silence, as if one had blasphemed the Almighty, that one realized how useless it was even to try to make contact with a mind which had become warped and for whom the facts of life had become what Hitler and Goebbels, with their cynical disregard for truth, said they were.

Remind you of anything?


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