The New Nuremberg Defense

The Nuremberg Defense is a plea for defense in which a person abdicates culpability for some atrocity by saying they were just following orders.  It stems from a code of German military conduct Befehl ist Befehl – an order is an order.

Central to the Nuremberg trials was the principle that following orders in not an excuse for committing crimes against humanity.  Each person has the duty to exercise moral judgement over the orders that they are given.  In the modern Western militarizes, military law explicitly states that soldiers must not obey clearly illegal orders, i.e., if a commanding officer orders a female prisoner to be raped as a form of torture, the subordinate is legally bound not to obey.

I have maintained that the Nuremberg Defense is such an act or moral cowardice, that it is tantamount to a guilty plea.  The defended knew what he did was wrong, but did it anyway believing the excuse of “just following orders” would spare him from consequences.

I give this bot of history as prelude to this.

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez doesn’t see herself and her party’s more radical voices as equivalent to Maduro because she was elected and her opinions are popular.

“We were democratically elected” is the new Nuremberg Defense.

It doesn’t matter how popular poll numbers are or by what landslide a politician wins an election, the implementation of evil is still evil.

Hugo Chavez was democratically elected by promising the poorer people of the urban areas of Venezuela free stuff from the goverment off the largess of wealthy and the oil driven economy.

We see where that has taken Venezuela.

Maduro was elected.  His election was a sham, but consider how much chicanery we saw in Broward and Palm Beach Counties, Arizona, and Georgia.  Where the Democrats lost was not for lack of trying.  There was just enough Republican oversight to keep the worst of the fraud at bay, and just barely.

When you lose the opposition oversight, you get a place like Chicago.  A city where there were more affidavits filed to rescind their ballot signatures than there were signatures to get the Republican candidate on the ballot, and the state Attorney General has announced that she won’t investigate the obvious fraud.

Let these Democrats get enough of a foothold in a place and they will never allow themselves to be voted out of office ever again.

I know it’s cliche, but Hitler was elected, so was Robert Mugabe.

The tactic of making the poor resent the rich and then promising the poor free stuff taken from the hands of the rich is an almost guaranteed path to election success.  It’s also a guaranteed path to economic ruin too.

“We were elected because our idea are popular” is not a defense against taking people’s rights away and destroying the economy.

Out Founding Fathers knew that which is why they created the Bill of Rights.  To make sure the rights of the people were not easily trampled on by popular opinion.

When your policies have bankrupted a nation, caused millions to starve, millions more to fall into destitution, the rights of the people to be eroded, all while making you and your buddies wealthy through graft and corruption, “but we were democratically elected” is not a defense.

5 Replies to “The New Nuremberg Defense”

  1. She was not elected because her ideas are popular. She was elected because her opponent made no effort, none, to compete in the primary and maybe 10% of those eligible to vote showed up..

    1. Nitpick time. Hitler was never democratically elected to office.

      Hitler was offered the position of Chancellor (not President- he didn’t get enough votes for that) by Von Papen & Gen. Schleicher, with the passive consent of President Hindenburg.

      The Nazi party was able to squeak out a victory in the parliamentary election of March 1933, but that was after the Reichstag Fire Decree* let the Nazis legally intimidate their opposition and suppress voter turn out. And even then, they still needed to partner up with another, smaller party to put together a majority coalition.

      It’s one of those little historical things that bugs me (especially when the Bush & Trump = Hitler crowd trots it out)- Hitler was never democratically elected to office, until after the stage managed November 1933 election.

      *Also with the passive consent of President Hindenburg.

  2. There is a term for what Occasional-Cortex is advocating for, that is found in the Federalist Papers: “Tyranny of the Majority”.

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