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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Historically fascinating but partially irrevelant, 19 Feb 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Leftism Revisited: From De Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot (Hardcover)
Von Kuehnelt-Leddhin has a tremendous grasp of historic facts which he liberally sprinkles throughout this book. Some are very esoteric and just a little obscure. Want to know the Nazi and Communist party tallies in, say, Thuringia in the 20s and 30s? He'll tell you and it will help the scholar understand current German politics to a small degree. Was Hus the first communist? The Baron thinks so but what is Hus's relevance to the Left in this century? A doubt most lefties would know who he is. More pertinent-Was Hitler a man of the Left or of the Right? The Baron argues that Hitler was a Leftist. The dominant Leftist aristocracy of modern academia would say Hitler was of the Right. Little old me- Hitler was a blend. He was Rightist in his Nationalism and his belief in law-and-order and, yes, his tribalism, chauvanism and racism. He was Leftist in his socialist economics, his love of big government,his hatred of Christianity and his hatred of traditional society.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Leddihn identifies Socialism's attrocities as "Progressive"., 23 July 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Leftism Revisited: From De Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot (Hardcover)
This encyclopedia of Leftism's arcana illustrates the "Progressive" nature, philosophical and historical roots of socialism's errors and attrocities, from the French Revolution to Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot, which are laid out in exquisite detail by the recently deceased Leddihn. "Lefism" cannot be defeated by the 'non-ideology', of the Right. Hitler, the animal rights legislator,(anti-smoking} vegetarian, New Age religionist socialist competed successfully for the intelligencia of Europe and America up untill his attack on socialism's Utopian hope..Russia. Hitler's sexual progressivism as well as the French Revolution's is made clear, as well as the early "racist" and class-warfare {punishment/reward by group category rather than as individuals} thinking of socialists in the communist branch. Also, a valuable reference book of out of print classics and the American founding father's actual attitudes, constitutional safeguards and objections toward Democracy.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful analyses, 6 Aug 2005
By 
Pieter Uys "Toypom" (Johannesburg) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Leftism Revisited: From De Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot (Hardcover)
The author was that rare breed of classical European liberal, a species now all but extinct. In this masterpiece he investigates the Leftist mindset, Leftism in history and in the foreign policy of the USA. Most important, the book provides a valuable description of Real versus False Liberalism.
Kuhnelt-Liddihn's aim was to reinforce the noble Western tradition of individual freedom that has been under assault for so many decades now, from so many sides. Not an easy read, the book can be quite exhausting in places as the author puts his vast knowledge of human thought to work in support of his great insight.
Under the Leftist Mind, he discusses certain good forms and bad forms of government as they manifest in the realm of politics, e.g. monarchy versus tyranny, aristocracy vs oligarchy and republic vs a democracy. In this section he also explores some 40 odd characteristics of the Leftist mind, like hatred of freedom, secular fanaticism and materialism.
In the section titled Leftism In History, Kuhnelt-Leddihn provides an awesome analysis of Leftist history with reference to the French Revolution, the birth of the USA, and various manifestations of collectivist movements like Socialism, Communism, Marxism, Fascism and Nazism. He considers the French Revolution as the most characteristic manifestation of Leftism.
The author then examines American foreign policy under Wilson and Roosevelt, the Vietnam War and the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia. Here he also talks about the fanatical nature of totalitarian ideologies that fills the void left by an imploding Christianity.
The passage on Liberalism, Real and False, reveals profound truths. Under Real Liberalism, he discusses the thinkers, the timeframe, the leaders, and attitudes towards religion. Adam Smith, de Tocqueville, Burke, Mises, Hayek, Lloyd George and Churchill are some of the names mentioned here.
Then he discusses False Liberalism, which is modern Leftism in the USA. He asks why the meaning of Liberal has undergone such a total inversion so that it now represents illiberal statism, and provides the answer. Leftists laid claim to the future, to terms like Progressive, whilst Conservatives tended to adhere to the status quo. He calls America's current version of liberalism "a boring mixture of modernity, mediocrity, mimicry and naiveté."
This thought-provoking book remains a classic and has grown in stature since it was first published.
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Leftism Revisited: From De Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot
Leftism Revisited: From De Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot by Erik Von Kuehnelt-Leddihn (Hardcover - 1990)
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