For roughly half of the country, or at least those who strongly following both politics and history, the 2012 election serves as a harbinger of the fundamental transformation expedited by Barack Obama that will, ultimately, cause the sun to set on America and its exceptionalism. Those who recall the not-so-distant past recognize a number of similarities in present-day America and European countries that ultimately succumbed to the devices of Socialism or Fascism. During his Wednesday evening broadcast, Glenn Beck examined these similarities, particularly as it relates to the Weimar Republic.
For those unfamiliar, the term "Weimar Republic" refers to Germany between the years 1919 and 1933 when the country was a parliamentary democracy, governed by a true constitution which had been drafted in the city of Weimar. While the Weimar Constitution technically survived until 1945, its last vestiges were truly snuffed out with the installation of Adolf Hitler and his Third Reich.
Under the Weimar Republic, German citizens enjoyed rights not so dissimilar to those found in modern-day America, including the freedom to vote. Thus, Weimar was Germany's first foray into the concept of democracy. Before World War I, Germany was relatively prosperous, with a gold-backed currency and a burgeoning manufacturing industry.
Even from the start, however, the Weimar's days were likely numbered, as by 1923 the country was in the throes of severe hyperinflation. While difficult to imagine, by this time, the currency exchange rate between the dollar and the German Mark was one trillion to one.
TheBlaze's Becket Adams authored an informative primer Wednesday discussing hyperinflation -- what it is, how it is triggered and what its long-term effects are. The article can be read in its entirety here.
Of course with such mind-boggling numbers, needless to say, the Republic embarked on a rapid downward trajectory.
During his program, Beck examined some of the crucial elements that led to the collapse of the Weimar and solidified the Third Reich's place in history. Among them were the country's abandonment of a gold standard, tremendous debt and entitlements coupled with inadequate revenue streams that ultimately led to printing money and devaluing the nation's currency. Soon, riots and overall societal decay. Given the meme that had been perpetuated in Nazi propaganda painting the Jews only as money-hoarding bankers who were robbing Germany of all its wealthy, of course the most notable form of this societal decay was manifest through anti-Semitism.
The rest, as they say, is history.
Watch below as Beck relives this dark chapter in history and draws some sobering comparisons to present-day U.S.: