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View Poll Results: Who was worse
HITLER! 52 45.22%
STALIN! 63 54.78%
Voters: 115. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-17-2010, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Rochester
94 posts, read 210,227 times
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The two evils of the 20th century


Stalin was very sporadic in his killing, as his paranoia brought him to killing randomly, or so it seemed. Deaths from gulags and purges brought his numbers anywhere from 3 to even 50 million!!!

Hitler knew his enemies (jews, political enemies, soviets, rivals) and his death count seems to go as high as 30 million. This, in theory, means that if you walked the line in Nazi Germany, and agreed with its policies, you could make it without much fear.


So, which one would you not want to rule you?

Who is the lesser of two evils?
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Old 08-17-2010, 05:58 PM
 
Location: New York City
2,790 posts, read 5,065,617 times
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If my ancenstors weren't jews, I'd rather live in a country ruled by Hitler rather than Stalin.

That said, if I lived in a country bordering one ruled by Stalin or Hitler, I'd much rather it be ruled by Stalin than Hitler.
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:19 PM
 
48,519 posts, read 80,998,062 times
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That is like chosinng between one serial killer and another really.
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:28 PM
 
11,686 posts, read 13,074,643 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by texdav View Post
That is like chosinng between one serial killer and another really.
I really cannot understand the how anyone could pose such a question....it sounds like a five year old asking is it worse to be killed by a vampire or a werewolf.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:00 AM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
36,951 posts, read 17,425,944 times
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What does the winner get?

"Congratulations Adolph! And Joe, sorry it didn't go better for you, but you gave us a real battle and made it awfully close. As you know, no one goes away empty handed from the Worst Despot Game, Jennifer, what do we have for our guest?"

"Well, Rick, its the home version of "Worst Despot" along with a year's supply of Die Hard Batteries for use on those annoying dissenters, cry baby protesters and reluctant informants. Die Hard, the battery of choice for Strongmen around the world!"

"Okay, thank you Jennifer. Well, we're out of time for this week's show, but be sure and tune in next week when Adolph will be defending his title against Pol Pot and Ivan the Terrible."
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:51 PM
 
31,385 posts, read 31,046,755 times
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Just for S&G's

If you take the number deaths 42,000 for Hilter, and 30,000 for Stalin (average of the estimates) and divide by the number of years in power Hitler comes outscores Stalin by a factor of 3. Not that means anything, but given another 17 years Hilter would still be the all time murder of record.
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:35 AM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 22,232,709 times
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I think the Poles and maybe Ukrainians were faced with this in that period. My first thought is it would depend on your ethnicity and occupation.

The main thing that might make Hitler worse was he had groups of people he deemed "irredeemable" in a way different than Stalin. I think there were ethnic groups Stalin deemed almost inherently "opposed" to the regime, but I think in many more cases if you could convincingly display your unwavering loyalty and also kept your head down you could maybe manage in some fashion.

When it came to Hitler Jews, or at least Jews outside Germany anyway, could do nothing to change their fate. Ettore Ovazza of Italy was a committed Fascist and even after Italy accepted Anti-Semitic laws he still pleaded with Mussolini because he said "we are fascists. And so? I turn to You – DUCE – so that in this period- so important for our revolution, and you do not exclude that healthy Italian part from the destiny of our Nation." Ovazza was killed by the Nazi SS. In Poland Jews who had been Christian for generations were also killed. If someone strongly expressed their love of "the Revolution" and called Stalin by an honorific I'm not sure he'd kill him or at least maybe it could go either way with Stalin in such a situation.

Still Stalin was plausibly worse to soldiers and businessman. Soldiers it might be similar in a way because I don't think you could quit Stalin's army without risking reprisal. However if you stayed, and he deemed your popularity a threat, you could be risking death. If you stayed, and ever surrendered, you were risking death as well. Although if you just avoided having any position of leadership and kept your head down maybe you'd just have to worry about dying from the enemy.
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Old 08-19-2010, 07:09 AM
 
608 posts, read 1,148,438 times
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Stalin was much much more paranoid then Hitler was. I would rather live under Hitler.
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Old 08-19-2010, 09:09 AM
 
Location: Gallatin, TN
3,647 posts, read 6,714,586 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
What does the winner get?

"Congratulations Adolph! And Joe, sorry it didn't go better for you, but you gave us a real battle and made it awfully close. As you know, no one goes away empty handed from the Worst Despot Game, Jennifer, what do we have for our guest?"

"Well, Rick, its the home version of "Worst Despot" along with a year's supply of Die Hard Batteries for use on those annoying dissenters, cry baby protesters and reluctant informants. Die Hard, the battery of choice for Strongmen around the world!"

"Okay, thank you Jennifer. Well, we're out of time for this week's show, but be sure and tune in next week when Adolph will be defending his title against Pol Pot and Ivan the Terrible."
My sentiments exactly.
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Old 08-19-2010, 11:46 AM
 
Location: East of the Sun, West of the Moon
14,933 posts, read 16,520,894 times
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The big difference between target selection in terms of genocide was that Stalin focused on the political proclivities of a group. This could exclude individuals in a group who demonstrated opposition to the social norms of their group.

Hitler, on the other hand, employed the latest advancements in physical anthropology to define the groups he was opposed to. This was, scientifically speaking, a much more sophisticated approach to defining enemies of the state, but much more 'scatter-shot'.

Then again, their motives were different.
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