On Thursday, when he wasn’t reading Green Eggs and Ham, Ted Cruz (R-TX) was comparing Obamacare defunding critics to Nazi appeasers, and like Green Eggs and Ham, getting it all wrong.
Because, apparently, if we want healthcare, we want Germany to win?
Or Russia? Or whom, exactly?
See if you can figure it out:
Watch courtesy of TPM:
If you go to the 1940s, Nazi Germany, look, we saw in Britain, Neville Chamberlain, who told the British people, ‘Accept the Nazis. Yes, they’ll dominate the continent of Europe but that’s not our problem. Let’s appease them. Why? Because it can’t be done. We can’t possibly stand against them.’
The problem is, it was not the 1940s. By the 1940s, Europe was already embroiled in war.
You want appeasement? Look to the 1930s.
Note to Ted Cruz: Put down David Barton. The Second World War started in 1939.
Nor does Cruz get the whole idea behind appeasement. Chamberlain wasn’t trying to give Hitler domination of Europe. He was trying to prevent war, to soothe the beast, so to speak, by giving him a couple of snippets he hoped would satisfy him. He completely underestimated Hitler, but then, so did many other people both within Germany and without.
Chamberlain, by caving in to Hitler between 1937 and 1939, did not give Germany dominance of Europe. What Chamberlain “gave” Hitler were bloodless victories in Austria (the Anschluss, or union) and Czechoslovakia (the Munich Pact).
Hitler achieved dominance in Europe the hard way when he conquered Poland in 1939, and then went on and defeated France, Norway, Denmark, Belgium and the Netherlands militarily in 1940, when Chamberlain was no longer Prime Minister.
Cruz then indulged in a further bit of fantasy regarding anti-war sentiment in the U.S.:
And in America there were voices that listened to that. I suspect those same pundits who say it can’t be done, if it had been in the 1940s we would have been listening to them. Then they would have made television. They would have gotten beyond carrier pigeons and beyond letters and they would have been on TV and they would have been saying, ‘You cannot defeat the Germans.’
So in Cruz’s deluded mind, he is the hero standing up to aggression, the only man with the guts to stand up to Hitler in the guise of Obama. Almost nobody wants Cruz to “stand up to” Obamacare. Even his fellow Republicans aren’t buying what he’s selling.
Cruz has shown himself to be an object of contempt. Remember how he promised how he would filibuster till he was “no longer able to stand”? Well, not only did he take a break an hour into his “historic” filibuster, but his filibuster is technically not even a filibuster because of the rules of the Senate which limit how long anyone can speak before the vote to invoke cloture today.
He got Green Eggs and Ham all wrong – or another way of looking at it is to say he didn’t get it at all – and he proved to everyone listening that he has no grasp of history. It’s not just a matter of dates, or the actual events, but a matter of understanding the historical context of appeasement.
If Cruz thinks he is showing us all how he should be the next president, he is getting that all wrong too, because what he has shown us is that he is nothing more than a charlatan, a political grandstander preening himself before a rabid minority and providing final evidence to establishment Republicans why they need somebody like Chris Christie to give them even a chance, however remote, in 2016.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.