Of note: Someone dug up the NYT's first reference to Adolf Hitler, from November of 1922. The beginning of the third-from-last paragraph seems like something I could have read in a comment thread, well, yesterday:

"But several reliable, well-informed sources confirmed the idea that Hitler's anti-Semitism was not so genuine or violent as it sounded, and that he was merely using anti-Semitic propaganda as a bait to catch messes of followers..."

I have long suspected that politicians are significantly more honest than they are ever given credit for. Hitler was never even remotely subtle about his aims. Even among American candidates, you can find in their pre-election speeches a pretty clear guide to the way they think about running the country, and a fair notion of their priorities. While claims to perform economic impossibilities are routine nonsense ("Cut all the taxes, raise spending, balance the budget, provide cheap bread, and free circuses!") on most other things they're fairly straightforward.

I'm reminded of how many people on the Left were shocked to discover that Obama had no revolutionary change at all planned, and felt betrayed by his centrism, even though he had always announced it far and wide. People from all sides of the political spectrum superimposed upon him the president they imagined he would be, from a radical left-wing hero to the Muslim Antichrist.

The moral of this story: Pay attention to what people say. Assume they're telling the truth as they see it unless there's clear reason to think otherwise.

h/t @snowden on Twitter.
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