|Quote 1: “BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU” Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 3Quote 2: “WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.” Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 6Quote 3: “A hideous ecstasy of fear and vindictiveness, a desire to kill, to torture, to smash faces in with a sledgehammer, seemed to flow through the whole group of people like an electric current, turning one even against one’s will into a grimacing, screaming lunatic.” Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 16Quote 4: “one of those completely unquestioning, devoted drudges on whom, more even than on the Thought Police, the stability of the Party depended.” Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 23Quote 5: “We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness.” Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 27Quote 6: “The past was dead, the future was unimaginable.” Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 28Quote 7: “With its grace and carelessness it seemed to annihilate a whole culture, a whole system of thought, as though Big Brother and the Party and the Thought Police could all be swept into nothingness by a single splendid movement of the arm.” Part 1, Chapter 3, pg. 33Quote 8: “‘Who controls the past’, ran the Party slogan, ‘controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.’” Part 1, Chapter 3, pg. 37
Quote 9: “Comrade Ogilvy, who had never existed in the present, now existed in the past, and when once the act of forgery was forgotten, he would exist just as authentically, and upon the same evidence, as Charlemagne or Julius Caesar.” Part 1, Chapter 4, pg. 50
Quote 10: “Your worst enemy, he reflected, was your own nervous system. At any moment the tension inside you was liable to translate itself into some visible symptom.” Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 64
Quote 11: “She had not a thought in her head that was not a slogan, and there was no imbecility, absolutely none, that she was not capable of swallowing if the Party handed it out to her.” Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 67
Quote 12: “Sexual intercourse was to be looked on as a slightly disgusting minor operation, like having an enema.” Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 69
Quote 13: “They were born, they grew up in the gutters, they went to work at twelve, they passed through a brief blossoming period of beauty and sexual desire, they married at twenty, they were middle-aged at thirty, they died, for the most part, at sixty. Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbors, films, football, beer, and, above all, gambling filled up the horizon of their minds.” Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 71
Quote 14: “If there is hope, wrote Winston, it lies in the proles.” Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 72
Quote 16: “a nation of warriors and fanatics, marching forward in perfect unity, all thinking the same thoughts and shouting the same slogans, perpetually working, fighting, triumphing, persecuting – three hundred million people all with the same face.” Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 77
Quote 17: “Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.” Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 84
Quote 18: “It seemed to him that he knew exactly what it felt like to sit in a room like this, in an armchair beside an open fire with your feet in the fender and a kettle on the hob: utterly alone, utterly secure, with nobody watching you, no voice pursuing you, no sound except the singing of the kettle and the friendly ticking of the clock.” Part 1, Chapter 8, pg. 100
Quote 19: “Oranges and lemons, say the bells of St Clement’s, You owe me three farthings, say the bells of St Martin’s.” Part 1, Chapter 8, pg. 103
Quote 20: “At the sight of the words I love you the desire to stay alive had welled up in him, and the taking of minor risks suddenly seemed stupid.” Part 2, Chapter 1, pg. 110-11
Quote 21: “by degrees the flood of music drove all speculations out of his mind. It was as though it were a kind of liquid stuff that poured all over him and got mixed up with the sunlight that filtered through the leaves.” Part 2, Chapter 2, pg. 125
Quote 22: “Not merely the love of one person, but the animal instinct, the simple undifferentiated desire: that was the force that would tear the Party to pieces.” Part 2, Chapter 2, pg. 127
Quote 23: “to be bought furtively by proletarian youths who were under the impression that they were buying something illegal.” Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 132
Quote 24: “What was more important was that sexual privation induced hysteria, which was desirable because it could be transformed into war fever and leader worship.” Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 134
Quote 25: “She did not understand that there was no such thing as happiness, that the only victory lay in the far future, long after you were dead, that from the moment of declaring war on the Party it was better to think of yourself as a corpse. ‘We are the dead,’ he said.” Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 137
Quote 26: “The smell of her hair, the taste of her mouth, the feeling of her skin seemed to have got inside him, or into the air all around him. She had become a physical necessity.” Part 2, Chapter 4, pg. 140
Quote 27: “The proles, normally apathetic about the war, were being lashed into one of their periodical frenzies of patriotism.” Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 150
Quote 28: “So long as they were actually in this room, they both felt, no harm could come to them.” Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 152
Quote 29: “Even the one plan that was practicable, suicide, they had no intention of carrying out. To hang on from day to day and from week to week, spinning out a present that had no future, seemed an unconquerable instinct, just as one’s lungs will always draw the next breath so long as there is air available.” Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 153
Quote 30: “she only questioned the teachings of the Party when they in some way touched upon her own life. Often she was ready to accept the official mythology, simply because the difference between truth and falsehood did not seem important to her.” Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 154
Quote 31: “He had the sensation of stepping into the dampness of a grave, and it was not much better because he had always known that the grave was there and waiting for him.” Part 2, Chapter 6, pg. 160
Quote 32: “He knew that he was starving the other two, but he could not help it; he even felt that he had a right to do it. The clamorous hunger in his belly seemed to justify him.” Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 163
Quote 33: “The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over the material world.” Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 165
Quote 34: “It’s the one thing they can’t do. They can make you say anything – anything – but they can’t make you believe it. They can’t get inside you.” Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 167
Quote 35: “You will work for a while, you will be caught, you will confess, and then you will die… There is no possibility that any perceptible change will happen within our own lifetime. We are the dead.” Part 2, Chapter 8, pg. 177
Quote 36: “The primary aim of modern warfare Part 1n accordance with the principles of doublethink, this aim is simultaneously recognized and not recognized by the directing brains of the Inner Party is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 189
Quote 37: “If the machine were used deliberately for that end, hunger, overwork, dirt, illiteracy, and disease could be eliminated within a few generations.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 190
Quote 38: “the consciousness of being at war, and therefore in danger, makes the handing-over of all power to a small caste seem the natural, unavoidable condition of survival.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 192
Quote 39: “a mixture of psychologist and inquisitor, studying with extraordinary minuteness the meaning of facial expressions, gestures and tones of voice, and testing the truth-producing effects of drugs, shock therapy, hypnosis, and physical torture.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 194
Quote 40: “It was the product of a mind similar to his own, but enormously more powerful, more systematic, less fear-ridden. The best books, he perceived, are those that tell you what you know already.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 201
Quote 41: “Even the Catholic Church of the Middle Ages was tolerant by modern standards. Part of the reason for this was that in the past no government had the power to keep its citizens under constant surveillance. The invention of print, however, made it easier to manipulate public opinion, and the film and the radio carried the process further. With the development of television, and the technical advance which made it possible to receive and transmit simultaneously on the same instrument, private life came to an end.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 206-7
Quote 42: “the essential act of the Party is to use conscious deception while retaining the firmness of purpose that goes with complete honesty.” Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 215
Quote 43: “everywhere stood the same solid unconquerable figure, made monstrous by work and childbearing, toiling from birth to death and still singing.” Part 2, Chapter 10, pg. 222
Quote 44: “It was more natural to exist from moment to moment, accepting another ten minutes’ life even with the certainty that there was torture at the end of it.” Part 3, Chapter 1, pg. 232
Quote 45: “There were times when it went on and on until the cruel, wicked, unforgivable thing seemed to him not that the guards continued to beat him but that he could not force himself into losing consciousness.” Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 244
Quote 46: “The old feeling, that at bottom it did not matter whether O’Brien was a friend or an enemy, had come back. O’Brien was a person who could be talked to… O’Brien had tortured him to the edge of lunacy, and in a little while, it was certain, he would send him to his death. It made no difference.” Part 3, Chapter 2, pg.255-6
Quote 47: “There was nothing left in them except sorrow for what they had done, and love of Big Brother. It was touching to see how they loved him. They begged to be shot quickly, so that they could die while their minds were still clean.” Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 259
Quote 48: “We control matter because we control the mind. Reality is inside the skull.” Part 3, Chapter 3, pg. 268
Quote 49: “‘Do you remember writing in your diary,’ he said, ‘that it did not matter whether I was a friend or an enemy, since I was at least a person who understood you and could be talked to? You were right. I enjoy talking to you. Your mind appeals to me. It resembles my own mind except that you happen to be insane.’” Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 271
Quote 50: “It was like swimming against a current that swept you backwards however hard you struggled, and then suddenly deciding to turn round and go with the current instead of opposing it. Nothing had changed except your own attitude; the predestined thing happened in any case.” Part 3, Chapter 4, pg. 280
Quote 51: “For the first time he perceived that if you want to keep a secret you must also hide it from yourself.” Part 3, Chapter 4, pg. 283
Quote 52: “Do it to Julia! Do it to Julia! Not me! Julia! I don’t care what you do to her. Tear her face off, strip her to the bones. Not me! Julia! Not me!” Part 3, Chapter 5, pg. 289
Quote 53: “There were things, your own acts, from which you could not recover. Something was killed in your breast; burnt out, cauterized out.” Part 3, Chapter 6, pg. 293
Quote 54: “But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.” Part 3, Chapter 6, pg. 300
Quote 55: “The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of Ingsoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible.” Appendix, pg. 303
Remember: Do X! Don´t do Y!
Protect innocent, respect life, defend art, preserve creativity!
DJ Psycho Diver Sant – too small to fail
They are on the run, we are on the march!
Dummheit ist, wenn jemand nicht weiß, was er wissen könnte.
Political correctness ist, wenn man aus Feigheit lügt, um Dumme nicht zu verärgern, die die Wahrheit nicht hören wollen.
“Im Streit um moralische Probleme, ist der Relativismus die erste Zuflucht der Schurken.“ Roger Scruton
Antisemitismus ist, wenn man Juden, Israel übelnimmt, was man anderen nicht übelnimmt.
Islam ist weniger eine Religion und mehr eine totalitäre Gesellschaftsordnung, eine Ideologie, die absoluten Gehorsam verlangt und keinen Widerspruch, keinerlei Kritik duldet und das Denken und Erkenntnis verbietet. Der wahre Islam ist ganz anders, wer ihn findet wird eine hohe Belohnung erhalten.
Wahnsinn bedeute, immer wieder das gleiche zu tun, aber dabei stets ein anderes Resultat zu erwarten.
Gutmenschen sind Menschen, die gut erscheinen wollen, die gewissenlos das Gewissen anderer Menschen zu eigenen Zwecken mit Hilfe selbst inszenierter Empörungen instrumentalisieren.
Irritationen verhelfen zu weiteren Erkenntnissen, Selbstzufriedenheit führt zur Verblödung,
Wenn ein Affe denkt, „ich bin ein Affe“, dann ist es bereits ein Mensch.
Ein Mensch mit Wurzeln soll zur Pediküre gehen.
Wenn jemand etwas zu sagen hat, der kann es immer sehr einfach sagen. Wenn jemand nichts zu sagen hat, der sagt es dann sehr kompliziert.
Sucht ist, wenn jemand etwas macht, was er machen will und sucht jemand, der es macht, daß er es nicht macht und es nicht machen will.
Sollen die Klugen immer nachgeben, dann wird die Welt von Dummen regiert. Zu viel „Klugheit“ macht dumm.
Wenn man nur das Schlechte bekämpft, um das Leben zu schützen, bringt man gar nichts Gutes hervor und ein solches Leben ist dann nicht mehr lebenswert und braucht nicht beschützt zu werden, denn es ist dann durch ein solches totales Beschützen sowieso schon tot. Man kann so viel Geld für Versicherungen ausgeben, daß man gar nichts mehr zum Versichern hat. Mit Sicherheit ist es eben so.
Zufriedene Sklaven sind die schlimmsten Feinde der Freiheit.
Kreativität ist eine Intelligenz, die Spaß hat.
Wen die Arbeit krank macht, der soll kündigen!
Wenn Deutsche über Moral reden, meinen sie das Geld.
Ein Mensch ohne Erkenntnis ist dann lediglich ein ängstlicher, aggressiver, unglücklicher Affe.
Denken ist immer grenzüberschreitend.
Der Mob, der sich das Volk nennt, diskutiert nicht, sondern diffamiert.
Legal ist nicht immer legitim.
Wer nicht verzichten kann, lebt unglücklich.
Sogenannte Sozial-, Kultur-, Geisteswissenschaften, Soziologie, Psychologie, Psychotherapie, Psychoanalyse, sind keine Wissenschaften mehr, sondern immanent religiöse Kultpropheten, organisiert wie Sekten.
Ohne eine starke Opposition atrophiert jede scheinbare Demokratie zur Tyrannei, und ebenso eine Wissenschaft, zur Gesinnung einer Sekte.
Man kann alles nur aus gewisser Distanz erkennen, wer sich ereifert, empört, wer mit seiner Nase an etwas klebt, der hat die Perspektive verloren, der erkennt nichts mehr, der hat nur noch seine Phantasie von der Welt im Kopf. So entsteht Paranoia, die sich Religion, und Religion als Politik, sogar als Wissenschaft nennt.
Islamisten sind eine Gefahr, deswegen werden sie als solche nicht gesehen. Juden sind keine Gefahr, deswegen werden sie als solche gesehen. So funktioniert die Wahrnehmung von Feiglingen.
Humorlose Menschen könner nur fürchten oder hassen und werden Mönche oder Terroristen.
Menschen sind nicht gleich, jeder einzelne Mensch ist ein Unikat.
Erkenntnis gilt für alle, auch für Muslime, Albaner, Frauen und Homosexuelle.
Islam gehört zu Deutschland, Judentum gehört zu Israel.
Der Konsensterror (Totalitarismus) ist in Deutschland allgegenwärtig.
Es wird nicht mehr diskutiert, sondern nur noch diffamiert.
Es ist eine Kultur des Mobs. Wie es bereits gewesen ist.
Harmonie ist nur, wenn man nicht kommuniziert.
Man soll niemals mit jemand ins Bett gehen, der mehr Probleme hat, als man selbst.
>>Evelyn Waugh, sicherlich der witzigste Erzähler des vergangenen Jahrhunderts, im Zweiten Weltkrieg, herauskommend aus einem Bunker während einer deutschen Bombardierung Jugoslawiens, blickte zum Himmel, von dem es feindliche Bomben regnete und bemerkte: “Wie alles Deutsche, stark übertrieben.“<< Joseph Epstein
Man muß Mut haben, um witzig zu sein.
Dumm und blöd geht meistens zusammen.
Charlie Hebdo: solche Morde an Juden sind euch egal, mal sehen wie”angemessen” ihr reagiert, wenn (wenn, nicht falls) eure Städte von Islamisten mit Kasam-Raketen beschossen werden.
Christopher Hitchens großartig: „In einer freien Gesellschaft hat niemand das Recht, nicht beleidigt zu werden.“
Je mehr sich jemand narzisstisch aufbläht, desto mehr fühlt er sich beleidigt und provoziert.
“Das Problem mit der Welt ist, daß die Dummen felsenfest überzeugt sind und die Klugen voller Zweifel.” – Bertrand Russel
Das Problem mit den Islamisten in Europa soll man genauso lösen, wie es Europa für den Nahen Osten verlangt: jeweils eine Zweistaatenlösung, die Hälfte für Muslime, die andere Hälfte für Nicht-Muslime, mit einer gemeinsamen Hauptstadt.
Was darf Satire? Alles! Nur nicht vom Dummkopf verstanden werden, weil es dann keine Satire war.
Islamimus ist Islam, der Gewalt predigt.
Islam ist eine Religion der Liebe,und wer er anzweifelt, ist tot.
Krieg ist Frieden. Freiheit ist Sklaverei. Unwissenheit ist Stärke. Der Islam ist die friedliche Religion der Liebe – George Orwell 2015
Islam ist verantwortlich für gar nichts, Juden sind schuld an allem.
Islamisten sind Satanisten.
Leute fühlen sich immer furchtbar beleidigt, wenn man ihre Lügen nicht glaubt.
Jeder ist selbst verantwortlich für seine Gefühle.
Stupidity is demonstrated by people lacking the knowledge they could achieve
Political correctness can be defined as the telling of a lie out of the cowardice in an attempt to avoid upsetting fools not willing to face up to the truth
“In arguments about moral problems, relativism is the first refuge of the scoundrel.” Roger Scruton
Antisemitism is when one blames the Jews or Israel for issues, he does not blame others
Islam is less a religion and more a totalitarian society, an ideology that demands absolute obedience and tolerates no dissent, no criticism, and prohibits the thinking, knowledge and recognition. True Islam is totally different, the one who will find it will receive a very high reward.
Craziness is, when one always does the same but expects a different outcome
If a monkey thinks “I am a monkey”, then it is already a human
A man with roots should go for a pedicure
Self smugness leads to idiocy, being pissed off leads to enlightenment
If someone has something to say, he can tell it always very easily. If someone has nothing to say, he says it in a very complicated way
Addiction is, when somebody does something he wants to do, yet seeks someone who can make it so he won’t do it and doesn’t want to, either.
If the clever people always gave in, the world would be reigned by idiots. Too much “cleverness” makes you stupid.
If one only fights evil to protect life, one produces nothing good at all and such a life then becomes no longer worth living and thus requires no protection, for it is already unlived due to such a total protection. One can spend so much money on insurance, that one has nothing left to insure. Safety works in the same way.
Happy slaves are the worst enemies of freedom.
Creativity is an intelligence having fun.
If working makes you sick, fuck off, leave the work!
If Germans talk about morality, they mean money.
A man without an insight is just an anxious, aggressive, unhappy monkey.
Thinking is always trespassing.
The mob, who calls himself the people, does not discuss, just defames.
Legal is not always legitimate.
Who can not do without, lives unhappy.
So called social, culture sciences, sociology, psychology psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, are not anymore scientific, but immanent religious cult-prophets, organized as sects.
Without a strong opposition any apparent democracy atrophies to a tyranny, and as well a science , to an attitude of a religious sect.
You can recognize everything from a certain distance only, who is zealous, outraged, who sticks his nose in something, this one has lost the perspective, he recognizes anything more, he has only his imagination of the world in his head. This creates paranoia, which is called religion, and a religion as politics, even as a science.
Islamists are a real danger, therefore they will not be seen as such. Jews are not a danger, therefore they are seen as such. It is how the perception by cowards functions.
People without a sense of humor are able only to fear or to hate and become monks or terrorists.
People are not equal, each single person is unique.
Insight applies to everyone, including Muslims, Albanians, women and homosexuals.
Islam belongs to Germany, Judaism belongs to Israel.
The totalitarian Terror of consensus is ubiquitous in Germany.
One should never go to bed with someone who has more problems than you already have.
>>Evelyn Waugh, surely the wittiest novelist of the past century, in World War II, coming out of a bunker during a German bombing of Yugoslavia, looked up at the sky raining enemy bombs and remarked, “Like everything German, vastly overdone.”<< Joseph Epstein
One has to be brave, to have a wit.
Stupid and dull belong mostly together.
Charlie Hebdo: you don´t care if such murders are comitted to Jews, we will see how “adequate” you will react when (when, not if), Islamists will begin to bombard your cities with Kasam missiles.
Christopher Hitchens: “In a free society, no one has the right not to be offended.“
The more someone narcissistic inflates , the more he feels insulted and provoked.
“The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.” – Bertrand Russell
The problem with the Islamists in Europe should be solved exactly as Europe requires to the Middle East: a two-state solution, a half for muslims and the another half for not-muslims , with a common capital.
What may satire? Everything! Except be understood by the fool, because then it was not a satire.
Islamimus is Islam preaching violence.
Islam is a religion of love, and he who doubts is dead.
War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength. Islam is a peaceful religion of love – George Orwell 2015
Islam is not responsible for anything, Jews are guilty of everything.
Islamists are satanists.
People feel always terrible offended if you do not believe their lies.
Everyone is responsible for his feelings.
Psychoanalysis is nobody’s business except the psychoanalyst and his patient, and everybody else can fuck off.
Throughout its postwar history, Germany somehow managed to resist the temptations of right-wing populism. Not any longer. On March 13, the “Alternative for Germany” (AfD)—a party that has said it may be necessary to shoot at migrants trying to enter the country illegally and that has mooted the idea of banning mosques—scored double-digit results in elections in three German states; in one, Saxony-Anhalt, the party took almost a quarter of the vote. For some observers, the success of the AfD is just evidence of Germany’s further “normalization”: other major countries, such as France, have long had parties that oppose European integration and condemn the existing political establishment for failing properly to represent the people—why should Germany be an exception?
Such complacency is unjustified, for at least two reasons: the AfD has fed off and in turn encouraged a radical street movement, the “Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West,” or Pegida, that has no equivalent elsewhere in Europe. And perhaps most important, the AfD’s warnings about the “slow cultural extinction” of Germany that supposedly will result from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s welcoming of more than a million refugees have been echoed by a number of prominent intellectuals. In fact, the conceptual underpinnings for what one AfD ideologue has called “avant-garde conservatism” can be found in the recent work of several mainstream German writers and philosophers. Never since the end of the Nazi era has a right-wing party enjoyed such broad cultural support. How did this happen?
The AfD was founded in 2013 by a group of perfectly respectable, deeply uncharismatic economics professors. Its very name, Alternative for Germany, was chosen to contest Angela Merkel’s claim that there was no alternative to her policies to address the eurocrisis.The professors opposed the euro, since, in their eyes, it placed excessive financial burdens on the German taxpayer and sowed discord among European states. But they did not demand the dissolution of the European Union itself in the way right-wing populists elsewhere in Europe have done. Still, Germany’s mainstream parties sought to tar them as “anti-European,” which reinforced among many voters the sense that the country’s political establishment made discussion of certain policy choices effectively taboo. Like other new parties, the AfD attracted all kinds of political adventurers. But it also provided a home for conservatives who thought that many of Merkel’s policies—ending nuclear energy and the military draft, endorsing same-sex unions, and raising the minimum wage—had moved her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) too far to the left. Since there was a mainstream conservative view opposing many of these decisions, the AfD could now occupy space to the right of the CDU without suspicion of being undemocratic or of harking back to the Nazi past.
The AfD narrowly failed to enter the German parliament in 2013, but managed to send seven deputies to Brussels after the 2014 elections to the European Parliament, where they joined an alliance of Euroskeptic parties led by Britain’s conservatives. With outward success came internal strife. Young right-wingers challenged the AfD’s professors with initiatives such as the “Patriotic Platform,” which appeared closer to the nationalist far right than an authentically conservative CDU. In summer 2015, most of the founders of the AfD walked away; one expressed his regret about having created a “monster.” The AfD seemed destined to follow the path of so many protest parties, brought down by infighting, a lack of professionalism, and the failure to nurture enough qualified personnel to do the day-to-day parliamentary politics it would have to engage in to become more than a flash in the pan.
And then the party was saved by Angela Merkel. Or so the AfD’s new, far more radical leaders have been saying ever since the chancellor announced her hugely controversial refugee policy last summer. At the time, her decision was widely endorsed, but in the months since, her support has declined precipitously—while the AfD’s has surged. Many fear that the German state is losing control of the situation, and blame Merkel for failing to negotiate a genuinely pan-European approach to the crisis. Alexander Gauland, a senior former CDU politician and now one of the most recognizable AfD leaders—he cultivates the appearance of a traditional British Tory, including tweed jackets and frequent references to Edmund Burke—has called the refugee crisis a “gift” for the AfD.
Others have gone further. Consider the statements of Beatrix von Storch, a countess from Lower Saxony who is one of the AfD’s deputies to the European Parliament, where she just joined the group that includes UKIP and the far right Sweden Democrats. A promoter of both free-market ideas and Christian fundamentalism she has gone on record as saying that border guards might have to use firearms against refugees trying illegally to cross the border—including women and children. After much criticism, she conceded that children might be exempted, but not women.
Such statements are meant to exploit what the AfD sees as a broadening fear among voters that the new arrivals pose a deep threat to German culture. The AfD will present a full-fledged political program after a conference at the very end of April, but early indications are that there will be a heavy emphasis on preventing what the party views as the Islamization of Germany. A draft version of the program contains phrases such as “We are and want to remain Germans”—and the real meaning of such platitudes is then made concrete with the call to prohibit the construction of minarets. It is here that the orientation of AfD and the far more strident, anti-Islam Pegida movement most clearly overlap.
Pegida was started by right-wing activists in the fall of 2014 who invited citizens to join them for what they called “evening strolls” through Dresden and other cities to oppose “Islamization.” The movement’s leaders have also advocated better relations with Russia (posters have said “Putin help us!”), a call strongly echoed by AfD politicians such as Gauland. The demonstrators appropriated the slogan “We are the people,” which East German citizens had famously chanted in 1989 to protest against the state socialist regime. Pegida not only lives off diffuse fears (there are hardly any Muslims in Dresden), but also questions the democratic system as such. Elected representatives in parliament—Volksvertreter—are denounced as traitors—Volksverräter. Pegida members have decried Merkel’s policies of maintaining open borders as violating her oath of office to keep the German people safe.
Supporters of the movement have demanded “resistance,” or at least “civil disobedience,” for instance by blocking access to refugee centers. Demonstrators sometimes hold up the “Wirmer flag,” which the anti-Hitler resistance around Claus von Stauffenberg had intended as the symbol of a post-Nazi Germany. In fact, many far-right groups in Germany have appropriated this symbol to signal that they consider the current state illegitimate (even though Josef Wirmer, the designer of the flag, was a Catholic democrat who was executed by the Nazis; his son has said the Wirmer family might sue Pegida demonstrators for using the banner). Pegida events have been attended by right-wing leaders from outside Germany, most prominently the Dutch right-wing anti-Islam politician Geert Wilders (who calls the Tweede Kammer, the Dutch House of Representatives in The Hague, a “fake parliament”).
Here is where German intellectuals come into the story. Journalists and academics have had a hard time understanding why the Pegida movement emerged when it did and why it has attracted so many people in Germany; there are branches of the Pegida movement in other parts of Europe, but they have gathered only marginal support thus far. Those who suggest it is driven by “anger” and “resentment” are being descriptive at best. What is remarkable, though, is that “rage” as a political stance has received the philosophical blessing of the leading AfD intellectual, Marc Jongen, who is a former assistant of the well-known philosopher Peter Sloterdijk. Jongen has not only warned about the danger of Germany’s “cultural self-annihilation”; he has also argued that, because of the cold war and the security umbrella provided by the US, Germans have been forgetful about the importance of the military, the police, warrior virtues—and, more generally, what the ancient Greeks called thymos (variously translated as spiritedness, pride, righteous indignation, a sense of what is one’s own, or rage), in contrast to eros and logos, love and reason. Germany, Jongen says, is currently “undersupplied” with thymos. Only the Japanese have even less of it—presumably because they also lived through postwar pacifism. According to Jongen, Japan can afford such a shortage, because its inhabitants are not confronted with the “strong natures” of immigrants. It follows that the angry demonstrators are doing a damn good thing by helping to fire up thymos in German society.
Jongen, who is now deputy leader of the AfD in Baden-Württemberg, was virtually unknown until this spring. Not so Sloterdijk, one of Germany’s most prominent philosophers (and undoubtedly the most prolific) whose work has also become well-known in the US. Sloterdijk regularly takes on controversial subjects such as genetic engineering and delights in provoking what he sees as an intellectual left lacking in humor and esprit. His books, which sell extremely well, are not so much driven by clear-cut arguments as suggestively offering philosophical, and often poetic, re-descriptions of recent history, or even the history of the West as a whole. Like in Nietzsche’s On the Genealogy of Morality—a continuous inspiration for Sloterdijk—these re-descriptions are supposed to jolt readers out of conventional understandings of the present. However, not much of his work lives up to Nietzsche’s image of the philosopher as a “doctor of culture” who might end up giving the patient an unpleasant or outright shocking diagnosis: Sloterdijk often simply reads back to the German mainstream what it is already thinking, just sounding much deeper because of the ingenuous metaphors and analogies, cute anachronisms, and cascading neologisms that are typical of his highly mannered style.
Sloterdijk has distanced himself from Jongen’s self-declared “avant-garde conservatism.” But the “psycho-political” perspective Jongen adopts is one of Sloterdijk’s philosophical trademarks. In his 2006 volume Rage and Time, in which he also takes his cues from Nietzsche, Sloterdijk argued that in the West thymos had been largely forgotten because of the dominance of eros in consumer capitalism, with the result that envy and resentment dominate the inner lives of citizens. He echoed Francis Fukuyama’s argument in his The End of History and the Last Man that pacified liberal democracies generally fail to find a proper place for “thymotic energies,” and Sloterdijk has said explicitly that, in confrontations with Islam, the West needs to rediscover the role of thymos. Just like Jongen, who criticizes the EU for being “post-thymotic,” Sloterdijk longs for Europe to assert itself more forcefully on the global stage and fears that the refugee crisis will weaken the continent—to the delight, he says, of the US (“that’s why Obama praises Merkel,” as Sloterdijk put it in an interview published at the beginning of 2016).
Sloterdijk has also invoked the concept of “the state of exception” developed by the right-wing jurist Carl Schmitt in the Twenties. As Schmitt saw it, the sovereign could, in order to save the polity in a situation of crisis, suspend the constitution by declaring a state of exception. He added that whoever decides whether there really is an existential threat to a state is revealed as the supreme power. Today, Sloterdijk holds, it is not the state, the nominal sovereign, but the refugee who decides on the state of exception. As a result of Merkel’s policy to allow the unrestricted entry of Syrians, Sloterdijk charges, Germany has waived its own sovereignty, and this “abdication” supposedly “continues day and night.”
No doubt refugees themselves have faced a state of emergency and no doubt their arrival has created an exceptional challenge for Germany—but Sloterdijk’s observation makes at best for a momentarily arresting aphorism, as opposed to providing any real analysis of the situation: Merkel and her parliamentary majority in fact retain decision-making power, and there is no reason to believe that Europe’s most powerful state has become a plaything of dangerous foreigners. But Sloterdijk has charged that his critics are superficial intellectuals who surround his ideas as if the latter were “women at New Year’s Eve”—a tasteless allusion to the attacks on females in Cologne this winter.
Sloterdijk is not the only prominent cultural figure who willfully reinforces a sense of Germans as helpless victims who are being “overrun” and who might eventually face “extinction.” The writer Botho Strauβ recently published an essay titled “The Last German,” in which he declared that he would rather be part of a dying people than one that for “predominantly economic-demographic reasons is mixed with alien peoples, and thereby rejuvenated.” He feels that the national heritage “from Herder to Musil” has already been lost, and yet hopes that Muslims might teach Germans a lesson about what it means to follow a tradition—because Muslims know how to submit properly to their heritage. In fact, Strauβ, who cultivates the image of a recluse in rural East Germany, goes so far as to speculate that only if the German Volk become a minority in their own country will they be able to rediscover and assert their identity.
Such rhetoric indicates a potentially profound shift in German political culture: it is now possible to be an outspoken nationalist without being associated with—or, for that matter, without having to say anything about—the Nazi past. And it is possible to argue that Germany needs to experience a kind of 1968 in reverse: whereas back then, a grand coalition of Social and Christian Democrats meant that there was no real representation of the left in parliament, or so student activists thought, there are now a growing number of established intellectuals who are prepared to argue that there is no effective way to counter Merkel’s refugee policies in the Bundestag—with the consequence that the right needs to engage in “extra-parliamentary opposition.” It is one thing to oppose a government’s particular policies; it is another to claim, as the AfD explicitly does in its draft program, that a self-serving political class consisting of all parties has hijacked the democratic system as a whole: an “illegitimate situation,” the party says, which the Volk needs to correct.
Like at least some radicals in the late Sixties, the new right-wing “avant-garde” finds the present moment not just one of apocalyptic danger, but also of exhilaration. There is for instance Götz Kubitschek, a publisher specializing in conservative nationalist or even outright reactionary authors, such as Jean Raspail and Renaud Camus, who keep warning of an “invasion” or a “great population replacement” in Europe. Kubitschek tells Pegida demonstrators that it is a pleasure (lust) to be angry. He is also known for organizing conferences at his manor in Saxony-Anhalt, including for the “Patriotic Platform.” His application to join the AfD was rejected during the party’s earlier, more moderate phase, but he has hosted the chairman of the AfD, Björn Höcke, in Thuringia. Höcke, a secondary school teacher by training, offered a lecture last fall about the differences in “reproduction strategies” of “the life-affirming, expansionary African type” and the place-holding European type. Invoking half-understood bits and pieces from the ecological theories of E. O. Wilson, Höcke used such seemingly scientific evidence to chastise Germans for their “decadence.”
These ideas have been met with significant resistance. Some intellectuals have criticized Sloterdijk for being an armchair philosopher who offers Volk-psychology with little awareness of the reality of refugees’ lives or, for that matter, of the complex political imperatives Merkel is trying to juggle. (Sloterdijk in turn has said that he is simply on the side of populism, which he understands as the “realpolitik of the less and less silent majority.”) The social theorist Armin Nassehi has shrewdly pointed out that the seemingly avant-garde conservatives offer not much more than the sociologically naive view that more national homogeneity will solve all problems; and the novelist and essayist Navid Kermani, who with his much-praised reporting from the “Balkans route,” has reminded Germans of the actual plight of refugees. Nassehi and Kermani are among the most thoughtful intellectual voices in Germany today. Both also happen to be second-generation immigrants whose parents came to Germany from Iran in the 1950s.
The AfD might yet fail to establish itself in the political system. Infighting continues, not least because there are deep disagreements about whether the party should enter coalition governments or remain in “fundamental opposition.” It’s not clear that the AfD can successfully evoke the heroism of resistance and be a home for moderate Bürger all at the same time. As the number of refugees reaching Germany has dwindled with the effective closing of the “Balkans route,” the pressure on Merkel is easing. But neither conservatives nor nationalists are likely to forgive her for her stance during the refugee crisis. Three-quarters of Germans now expect the AfD to enter parliament in the national elections in 2017. And even if the party doesn’t reach the required threshold, it, and its intellectual supporters, will have brought about the most dramatic change in mainstream German political discourse since the country’s unification in 1990.