The real bastards.

I want to tell you the story of a couple of things that happened in the not too distant past, because they obviously need to be told again, if only to serve as a warning from history. They’re forgotten stories nowadays, possibly because they’re not very pleasant ones, but they did happen.

The philosophical basis for the Nazi movement in Germany, was an unholy union of several things; the pseudo-science of Eugenics, a deliberately perverted understanding of evolution and the romantic ideal of the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche’s Übermensch or superman, as interpreted by Adolph Hitler in his book Mein Kampf or My Struggle. The idea that to be a German, was to be a member of the Aryan master race destined to conquer and rule over all other inferior races, was successfully grafted onto the public psyche. Essentially, it was that tired old idea of telling someone over and over that they’re very very special. They’ll love you for that, and what’s more important, they’ll do exactly as you want them to do.

Since it was the establishment line, with a lot of authoritative scientific studies and papers backing it up, it became the background, the environment, the day-to-dayness in which most ordinary Germans lived, especially the young.

The one problem with this wonderful self-image of themselves as some sort of super race, was that Germany had exactly the same percentage of people who suffered mental retardation, physical deformity and congenital abnormalities, as every other country. The powers that be, decided to get rid of them, but discreetly. A lot of people played their part in it. The mentally ill or congenitally deformed were identified by their own local doctors or doctors in charge of care institutions. This was done by ticking various boxes on a form after each patient’s examination. The forms eventually found their way to the people handling the problem.

Dependent on which boxes were ticked, the patient’s name got added to a list or not. The actual murder was done in various ways but the most common was to send an enclosed lorry on a round to collect them up in groups. When the lorry was full, it was driven to a spot, where a mass burial pit had already been dug and the lorry backed up to the edge of it.

Then, a hose pipe connected to the exhaust, was fed into the interior of the back of the lorry and the engine left running for the required amount of time. Just run the engine for a bit, let the exhaust fumes do their work and hey presto, job done. A bit of humping and heaving of the bodies into the mass grave, fill it back in with the earth and it’s all over.

Conservative estimates of the number murdered, put the figure at about 70,000 people, mainly children and young people, but the true number is almost certainly a lot higher. You see, they all covered their tracks too well. The doctors weren’t obliged to keep a copy of the forms they ticked and they were clever enough not to do so, the deaths were always officially recorded as being from things like pneumonia, all the bodies were supposedly cremated and all queries by anxious families were strongly discouraged. To this day, some of those families still want to find out exactly what happened to a loved one or at least the location of a burial place, where they might leave some flowers in remembrance.

For the next story, we have to move to Russia. The Soviet Union, like all totalitarian states, always had a problem with political opponents and dissidents, the subtle distinction between the two being that the former simply hated Communism, while the latter just had vehement policy disagreements on exactly how the coming worker’s Utopia was to be achieved. The classic solution for either of them, was a decade or two, safely out of the way in a Siberian work camp .

In the 70s and 80s, this solution became a propaganda liability, because too many of the prominent dissidents already had a high-profile in the West. A quieter and more publically defensible solution, had to be found. The political theorists of the party, came up with an answer. Given that the state was so all-powerful, then any one individual who thought they could oppose the will of the state, just had to be insane or at least unstable. Unlikely as it may sound, scientific papers and psychological studies of dissidents confirmed this essentially political conjecture.

The dissidents were forcibly examined by state psychologists and started disappearing into lunatic asylums, safely out of sight and any possible contact with the outside world. A few of the notables they did this to, included the writer Yuli Daniel, the biologist Zhores Medvedev, the physicist Andrei Sakharov and the biologist Vladimir Bukovsky but there were a lot of ordinary people confined to asylums as well. Not very surprisingly, after a few years of nothing for company but the severely mentally ill and a regime of massive drug over-medication, a lot of them developed mental problems, some of them chronic.

Various commissions have looked at how widespread this abuse of psychiatry was, but nobody has any real idea of how large the numbers were. Certainly, the notable dissidents have all been accounted for but as for the rest, who knows? A sad problem also came to light. Nobody knew how many current residents of long-term institutions had gone in healthy but had now become clinically insane. They freed all those who could still function in the outside world but as for the rest, beyond some real humanitarian care for them, there wasn’t much that could be done for them. Some of them are probably still there now.

This is real history, real facts, it all actually happened and it all happened to ordinary human beings, such as you and I. It’s history, but it’s not the history that’s taught in schools, and it’s exactly the sort of history that should be. The teaching of history as a subject has gone from drumming into pupils an endless succession of boring dates, to the exclusive upward view of the world from downtrodden and exploited peasants, neither of which is actually teaching history, but that’s a debate for another day.

It would be just so easy and comfortable to say only Germans or Russians could do things like that, but that would be just another racist lie. I could just as easily have picked similar stories from any other country. There is a famous experiment done by the psychologist Stanley Milgram in the early 60s. It consisted of three people; a researcher and two volunteers. The volunteers were told that it was research into learning and how it might be improved by mild pain. One of the volunteers would be the teacher and the other one the learner. The learner was placed in different room from the researcher and teacher but they could still communicate by intercom.

The learner had to memorise and repeat back some material to the teacher. If the learner made a mistake, then the teacher was to administer an electric shock to them. If the learner continued to make mistakes, then the voltage was to be gradually increased. The teacher could hear the resultant screams by the learner over the intercom. The scale of the device delivering the shocks was clearly marked with what voltages were dangerous but the teacher, under nothing more than verbal prodding by the researcher, continued to shock the learner, even in some cases, when they started complaining about heart problems.

The reality of the experiment, was that it wasn’t about learning at all, but about just how far an ordinary person could be pushed to hurt another human being. The learner was an actor and no shocks were actually being delivered. The biggest shock was to Milgram and his colleagues. Roughly 65% of the teachers were eventually browbeaten into delivering what they could clearly see was the maximum 450 Volt shock to the learner. That voltage is well into the lethal zone. The Milgram experiment has been repeated all over the world, with substantially similar results. There’s a lot of stuff to think about from that experiment but the truly terrifying implication, is that it doesn’t take much to induce the ordinary person to do terrible things. All it needed was one authority figure in a white lab coat, pushing them on.

It’s not a nice thought, but the sad reality is that the ordinary people of any nation are capable of doing things like that, just as long as they feel what they’re doing has been sanctioned by wiser heads, and that’s without having been gradually and carefully conditioned beforehand.

Why am I telling these stories? Well, apart from the basic brutality, they share a common denominator. All these crimes against humanity were facilitated and made possible, because of the cooperation of the more educated and professional segments of the populace. The authority figures. They helpfully produced studies and research on minorities, which the state was determined to eliminate.

Because I am a climate realist, a skeptic, a denier, I am a minority. I see so-called papers, studies and other pseudo-psychological material being produced to explain away what is basically a fundamental political difference in my viewpoint from the establishment’s. I see some notable bloggers discussing such papers and what I find indecent and appalling, is the complete lack of moral condemnation. Who cares what number of people the study was conducted on. Who cares how the research was slanted. Who cares if they used an inappropriate statistical method. Haven’t we learned anything from history? Isn’t it obvious the direction that it’s trying to head in?

Do I think we’re heading into a situation like those German handicapped or those Russian dissidents? No, not in the current political climate but three or so years back, we started moving perilously close to the start of that path to hell.

When I look back on the integrity and the raw, naked, lonely courage and fortitude of scientists like Medvedev, Sakharov and Bukovsky, I consider the people producing these “scientific” studies, as something lower than filth.

Who’s to blame for those mass graves, entombing all those little bones? Who’s to blame for all those shattered minds? In a basic moral sense, where does the blame belong?

Was it Obergefreiter Willie Schmidt and his mate, who started the engine and went away for a smoke, just far enough away not be able to hear the banging from inside or the screams? Was it Ivan Ivanevich Ivanov, who dutifully turned up every day, held the inmates down when they resisted getting those injections and made damn sure that they couldn’t escape? Sure, not great examples of humanity but to my mind, while they and others did the actual deeds, the root cause of the blame doesn’t lay with them.

Perhaps it was all those trusted family doctors, who kept on ticking those boxes, long after they noticed that some of their more difficult patients were disappearing, never to be heard of again? Perhaps it was all those psychologists, consigning  those brave and eminently sane people into institutions for the mentally ill? Well, yes, a bigger share of the blame must be borne by them, because at some point, they must have known they were doing real harm to people, when the whole point of both of their professions was to cure or at least help people. Whatever happened to first do no harm?

But No. The real moral blame lies elsewhere. It’s the people at the very head of the chain, the very ones who should have known better. The authoritative highly educated and very respected ones, who produced those learned papers and dissertations. Because a human being had a lower intelligence than normal or crippling disabilities, they were a burden on society and could therefore be considered somehow disposable. They were a chance pollution of racial purity, a problem which had to be addressed. In the eugenicist parlance of the time, a simple matter of racial hygiene. Because someone disagreed with the state’s political viewpoint, they had to be insane, so it was okay to not only take away their liberty but their sanity as well.

All those erudite people and their studies, research and papers, lent a spurious legitimacy and authority to the whole thing and having laid that essential groundwork, facilitated what inevitably followed. They all got away with it too. Every last one of them.

They were the real bastards.


Related articles by Pointman:

Some thoughts on fanatics and how to fight them.

Click for a list of other articles.

35 Responses to “The real bastards.”
  1. thojak says:

    Great post, Pointman!
    Being born Swede, I’m utterly ashamed of the history of my country’s various engagements as well as its long time active participation/pushing in/of the eugenicist field of this so called ‘science’.
    The “Statens institut för rasbiologi” (The state institute for race hygienic, ‘SIFR’) was formed in 1922 as the first of its kind in the world, situated at the Upsala University. Prior to that, the “Svenska sällskapet för rashygien” (~ Sw. ass. for race hygienic) was formed in 1909 on which board the not so unknown Svante Arrhenius was a member…
    The ‘SIFR’ was ‘active’ as an institution at the UU until 1987/8(!), when its ‘purpose’ was changed into the ‘research/science’ of gender. This is also the state of ‘art’ as today. Whereas, N.B. Norway has cancelled all funding for the ‘academic gender-science’, as being non-scientific!


    (In Swedish, though… Pls. use google translate)

    There has been a rather long time ‘debate’ here in Sweden as to whether the sami people will get their ancestors leftovers back to bury from the cellars of the national historical museum in Stockholm – the cellars are more than full of ‘bones’. However the living/acting/deciding politocrats [this is 2012!!] do still refuse this to take place.

    Sweden – a pitiable country!


  2. Heggs says:

    Came here from WUWT->Judith Curry. Very nice post man, I look forward to checking out the rest of your blog.




  3. Amr Marzouk says:

    Spot on analysis I remember the cold war part of this and was appalled at the time and see it again now with any dissenters.


  4. Blackswan says:


    While the examples you cite illustrate your point perfectly, I feel the Supreme Master of the genocide of minorities (which later became open slather on the general population) was Pol Pot of Cambodia and should be added to the discussion.

    He only succeeded in his maniacal regime because of backing from the UK, the USA and the United Nations.

    There were plenty of Real Bastards sitting in our own Governments who fostered this murderous regime and its flourishing Killing Fields for their own political ends.

    If any of us is complacent enough, or stupid enough not to learn from history, or deluded enough to think “it could never happen here”, or naive enough to assume our governments would never allow such “cleansing” of anyone, then they need to rethink their insular view of the world.

    Sadly – complacent, stupid, deluded, naive and insular describes the majority of our respective Western populations. We all have the happy knack of thinking that calamities only ever happen to other people, never to us. Your Real Bastards (on the public payroll) have been laying the groundwork for decades; Politicians (also on the public payroll) have been busily legislating to establish restrictions on our liberties that previous generations took for granted and never dreamed would come to pass in this modern era.

    History, and what it teaches us of power, corruption and suffering is our greatest teacher of all – we ignore it at our peril.


  5. pacpride says:

    Lisa Jackson of the EPA strikes me as a much too willing teacher. We all must be punished for using fossil fuels.


  6. Pointman says:

    Global Warming Author Says “Bar-Code Everyone at Birth”.

    “Anonymity would be impossible as would mistaken identity making it easier to place responsibility accurately, not only in war but also in non-combat situations far from the war”

    I think we all know who she’s referring to in the “non-combat situations far from the war” bit. Good old BBC …



    • Blackswan says:


      Your link includes ….

      ” … some of the proposals that were being floated for controlling people’s movements and activities, including carbon rationing and calorie cards whose avowed aim is the curtailment of people’s lives in the name of saving the environment.”

      This is not just being “floated” – it’s a fact.

      Most Australians would be unaware that we are currently in the midst of a trial for the Personal Carbon Credit Card which includes penalties for those consuming foods that are considered “unhealthy” ……..

      Since the announcement of this program in October 2010 we have heard nothing of its success/failure, the costs to the long-suffering taxpayer or had any report from the Real Bastard Professor who toddled off to Cancun (at taxpayer expense) to announce his brilliant initiative to the world.


      • Jack Wilder says:

        Excellent article, well worth a read.


      • alexjc38 says:

        “According to Egger, it is intended to be introduced in Australia then the UK…”

        “… then the UK…” Why am I not surprised?


      • meltemian says:

        If they are half-way through the 3 year trial do we have any idea what’s happening?
        With a bit of luck they might just “take the money and run” if your next government pulls the plug on the whole AGW/CO2 fiasco…..or am I being too optimistic?


      • Blackswan says:


        I think it will be like all of the preposterous waste of billions in taxpayer dollars in the name of Climate Fraud – it will simply sink without trace. None of those Real Bastards will ever be held accountable.


  7. alexjc38 says:

    Excellent essay. Blackswan makes a very good point too, about complacency. In the comfortable West, people nowadays have better access to information about the past than has been the case throughout all of recorded history – but many appear to have little or no interest in learning the lessons that are there in plain view.

    A case in point – re Elizabeth Moon and chipping/bar-coding the entire population, that this suggestion comes from a believer in catastrophic man-made climate change, I don’t find so odd. That it comes from a science fiction writer I do find odd, one job of a good SF writer being to follow through properly on the “what ifs”. This is astounding naivety, at the very least.


    • Pointman says:

      With regard to Elizabeth Moon, it just shows the advances in technology. They used to be happy with just tattooing a number on people.



    • Blackswan says:


      How about this for the ‘thin edge of the wedge’?

      “Casual workers forced to wear barcodes”

      While administrators will undoubtedly argue that this process facilitates the management of a casual workforce, cuts costs etc, it can well be seen as the beginning of a process of acceptance for ‘managing’ the wider working population. And then what?

      Familiarity doesn’t always breed contempt; it can be part of a process of indoctrination and altering perceptions in a wider population to implement all kinds of outrageous curtailing of our liberties.


  8. Pointman says:

    It’s Memorial Day. Thank you all for your service.



  9. Pointman says:

    Breaking China’s One-Child Law

    “In an unprecedented crackdown, Chinese officials set out to sterilize 10,000 women — by jailing their relatives until the women submitted.”



    • Blackswan says:

      The Real Bastards in our respective governments are Champion Hypocrites. In recent days we have seen Syrian representatives sent home in protest at the government massacres of civilians in that country. When it comes to China they remain deaf, dumb and blind – what a bunch of apes.


  10. Blackswan says:


    This is a link to an interesting discussion about the Real Bastards, between Sydney radio broadcaster Alan Jones and Marc Merano ….

    …. everything from lying scientists to lying politicians to lying journalists, all bundled up in a neat package, and explaining how our Carbon Tax laws will devastate our economy.


  11. Damo says:

    Came here from the DT. Great post, I look forward to exploring this blog.


  12. theduke says:

    Good post, Pointman. I share your view of the history of the 20th century. The authoritarians of the left, and I include the Nazis in that group, were criminal bastards. I remember reading about the Katyn Forest Massacre in which 10,000 of the cream of Polish Society represented mostly by their officer corps were murdered in cold blood after surrendering to the invading Nazis. Because the ground they were imprisoned on was contested by Soviets and the battle was fierce, it was not apparent who had murdered them. For decades the Soviets blamed the Nazis and the Germans blamed the Soviets. The fact that both were considered likely to have committed such a heinous crime tells you how similar they were. Eventually it was determined that the Russians had murdered nearly all of them.

    I believe that you are correct in your assessment that governments girded by the opinions of climate scientists are not quite capable of shoving government-sanctioned, “official” climate science and forced mitigation down the throats of the people, but then I read something the other day written by Myles Allen on May 26th at Bishop Hill’s blog that gave me pause. He wrote:

    To be clear, “good for the planet” in the final line of the talk does not, of course, mean “good for us (or our grandchildren)”. That is the whole point. I sincerely hope we do not end up in a situation where governments feel justified in taking highly anti-democratic measures to stabilise global temperatures, however effective they might be. I still believe this is a problem we can solve without compromising fundamental democratic principles, but the longer we leave off talking seriously about it, the harder this will be.

    The guy is a physicist at Oxford with a PhD. Then there was the EPA regulator who spoke of “crucifying” so-called polluters to intimidate everyone else in industry. There are thousands of examples of government over-reach and abuse of power reported every year and I don’t see that that will diminish in the near future.


    • Pointman says:

      ” … I sincerely hope we do not end up in a situation where governments feel justified in taking highly anti-democratic measures … ”

      There it is. That’s Nuspeak for if it has to be done, I’ll go along with it.



    • Uninformed Luddite says:

      The Katyn Forest Massacre(10,000 killed) was perpetrated by the Soviet Secret Police (aka NKVD). The Khatyn massacre(<200) was a village of a couple of dozen houses that were massacred by a bunch of Ukrainian Nazi collaborators in the 1940s.
      A Pedantic and late comment but as the OP got 6 thumbs up it needed correction. I guess in today's world this makes me a homophobic bigoted Nazi apologist.


      • Uninformed Luddite says:

        I was editing a couple of comments on different sites at the same time and I shouldn’t have used the word incorrect as the comment replied to here was factually correct. I just wished to add the Khatyn data as that sometimes causes confusion as to who perpetrated which massacre. A clip from the thoroughly depressing movie Katyn:


  13. Mindert Eiting says:

    Good post Pointman. My memory is sloppy but I know that about one year ago a dissertation was defended at an university in one of the Baltic states (Lithuania?) about abuse of psychiatry in the Sovjet Union. I know someone who has been there. Perhaps Google may be helpful if you are interested.


  14. hunter says:

    Read more on eugenics. It is truly a chilling chapter.
    Your post is a great one. AGW is an out of control social mania/dysfunction. It is pernicious and aggressively corrupting people across many social strata.
    All we can right now is to point out the fallacies and ugliness and hope that it burns itself out before a lot of people get hurt.


  15. Gail Combs says:

    Thank you for this article. I put up a comment with links identifying some of those BASTARDS at WUWT.

    The state I now live in, North Carolina, was still sterilizing people as late as 1977 using the same ideas. Margaret Mead, president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, in a meeting just down the street in Research Triangle Park N.C. organized a conference in 1975 that kicked off the CAGW hoax. On April 22, 1970, (Lenin’s birthday) “noted anthropologist and outspoken environmentalist Margaret Mead inaugurates the first Earth Day, an event to increase public awareness of the world’s environmental problems.”

    Not something I am proud of as an American or a resident of NC.

    Others might like to read the following:

    Part 1: The Chasm
    Part 2: Secret Organizations and Hidden Agendas
    Part 3: Days of Infamy
    Part 4: The War on Terrorism

    I have no idea of how true the above information is but I have seen nothing to make me thing it is not true.


  16. Gail Combs says:

    Pointman, you might be interested in looking at Dr. Rummel’s Democide: DEATH
    when people are killed by their own government.

    Before the 20th century Over 133,147,000 Murdered. In the 20th Century 169,202,000 were Murdered.

    4. 61,911,000 Murdered: The Soviet Gulag State
    5. 35,236,000 Murdered: The Communist Chinese Ant Hill
    6. 20,946,000 Murdered: The Nazi Genocide State
    7. 10,214,000 Murdered: The Depraved Nationalist Regime

    8. 5,964,000 Murdered: Japan’s Savage Military
    9. 2,035,000 Murdered: The Khmer Rouge Hell State
    10. 1,883,000 Murdered: Turkey’s Genocidal Purges
    11. 1,670,000 Murdered: The Vietnamese War State
    12. 1,585,000 Murdered: Poland’s Ethnic Cleansing
    13. 1,503,000 Murdered: The Pakistani Cutthroat State
    14. 1,072,000 Murdered: Tito’s Slaughterhouse

    15. 1,663,000 Murdered? Orwellian North Korea
    16. 1,417,000 Murdered? Barbarous Mexico
    17. 1,066,000 Murdered? Feudal Russia

    Anyone who does not think it can happen again is nuts. This is the true danger of nasty people like Looney Lew and the Royal Society.

    The royal Society was connected to Eugenics and STILL is:

    Do not forget the founding Fabians were very much in favor of Eugenics.
    Eugenics: the skeleton that rattles loudest in the left’s closet:
    Socialism’s one-time interest in eugenics is dismissed as an accident of history. But the truth is far more unpalatable

    And the UK hospitals are putting Eugenics into practice TODAY!

    Children placed on controversial ‘death pathway’:
    Sick children are being placed on a controversial end-of-life “pathway” previously only thought to have been used for elderly and terminally-ill adult patients.

    The Liverpool Care Pathway, under which medication, nutrition and fluids can be withdrawn, is being used on young patients as well as severely-disabled new born babies, it has been revealed.

    The disclosure has sparked a row amid concerns that parents may feel “coerced” into allowing their child to be placed on the pathway.

    It came as a doctor disclosed in a leading medical journal that he had presided over ten cases involving end-of-life procedures for newborns.

    In the article he described in excruciating detail how the process of withdrawing food and fluid from severely disabled newborns could take an average of ten days during which the infant becomes “smaller and shrunken”.


  17. theyouk says:

    Just found this, and I must say it is brilliant and spot on.

    I fear we are approaching a critical mass in the US of a resurgence of this terrible mindset.

    A couple years ago, our local paper invited readers to post pictures of people’s properties where sprinklers were wasting water (because, of course, we couldn’t actually be good neighbors and offer privately to perhaps help someone conserve water–no, we have dehumanize/vilify them in public). Now Team Obama wants citizens to report climate deniers–and has a website to facilitate this.

    Welcome to the new State. Dissent is not allowed. Disagreement with the state indicates mental illness. Neighbors (this is true) vandalize political signs (and often property) that disagree with their views. The Party in Charge continues building up its ability to exert influence over the masses by assuming the position of “the smartest” in the land.

    The very fact that they do not engage in discourse; do not defend ideas; do not understand the principles and history leading to the founding of the US (and actively work to bury or rewrite these) makes me fear that what once could be protected by the law will shortly have to be protected by arms. I am afraid of where this may be going.


  18. stewgreen says:


    Come back with a real email address and I might be interested, but given the quality of your info, it’d have to be a really slow day …



  19. Reblogged this on gottadobetterthanthis and commented:

    First, do no harm.
    Do justly. Love Mercy. Walk humbly.
    If enough people will do so, the horrors will never happen again.

    The key is, we are all in this together, and each of us has infinite potential for the good but also for the evil. We all want to do good, but we all tend toward evil. Our gravest failing is our tendency, our eagerness, to actively defend our lethargy and aggrandize, even justify, our harmful deeds. We know it is in itself evil, but we all tend to blame the victim anyway.
    Actively seek justice. Go the extra mile and show mercy. Understand that truth exists, and you just might not have it right; evaluate that possibility in humility.


  20. menicholas says:

    Hi Pointman,
    I was directed here after reading your post on WUWT.
    Excellent essay.
    I have shared this on my FB page, with instructions to read it because it is important.
    I recently brought up the Milgram experiment during a discussion about police and the Baltimore riots.
    I agree that the experiment is important for what it reveals about basic human nature.
    And that it is quite chilling.

    Thank you for taking the time to write this and share it.

    – Nick


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  1. […] face a court of law for their part in it? Of course not, they’re in that long tradition ofslinking away unpunished and on with their prestigious lives to horizons anew and all is forgotten. Their skirts will be […]


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