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Capitalist Thomas Perkins Says The Rich Are Persecuted Like Jews In Nazi Germany

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Thomas Perkins founded a venture capital company that CNN has called “the most storied VC firm in Silicon Valley.” His personal worth is estimated at $8 billion. He was once married to the bestselling romance novelist Danielle Steele. This is a guy who, at 81 years old, would seem to have the world at his feet.

And yet, Thomas Perkins feels oppressed. In fact, he says Americans are so oppressive toward their wealthiest citizens that the way America treats its top one percent of income earners is no different from the way Nazis persecuted Jews in the Holocaust.

Perkins, founder of the 40-year-old venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, aired his thoughts and made what The Atlantic Magazine called “the worst historical analogy you will read for a long, long time.”

In a puzzling, seemingly apropos of nothing letter to The Wall Street Journal Friday, this is what he said:

“I would call attention to the parallels of fascist Nazi Germany to its war on its ‘one percent,’ namely its Jews, to the progressive war on the American one percent, namely the ‘rich,'” the former member of Hewlett-Packard’s board of directors wrote, drawing a comparison that The Atlantic‘s Jordan Weissmann called “the reductio ad absurdum of a rich-guy’s persecution complex.”

As Weissmann explained Perkins’ logic, “The Jews were a minority. The rich are a minority. Therefore, criticizing the rich is akin to committing genocide against the Jews. QED.”

In the letter headlined “Progressive Kristallnacht Coming?” Perkins complained, “I perceive a rising tide of hatred of the successful one percent.” This is a trend that Perkins sees as dangerous because it apparently could lead to mass extermination of wealthy people.

Kristallnacht was unthinkable in 1930,” wrote Thomas Perkins. “Is its descendent ‘progressive’ radicalism unthinkable now?”

Kristallnacht, or “Night of Broken Glass,” was a watershed event in the Nazi persecution of Jews. On November 9 and 10, 1938, instigated by Nazi Party Stormtroopers, thousands of ordinary German citizens went on a rampage of rioting, looting and murder throughout the country — all directed at the Jewish population in Germany and Austria, as well as in other areas occupied by the Nazis.

About 7,500 Jewish-owned businesses were attacked, 267 synagogues burned, and many Jewish cemeteries were desecrated — and 91 Jews were killed during the rioting, which was designed to appear spontaneous, but was actually well-organized by top Nazi officials, according to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum account of Kristallnacht.

Another Kristallnacht. That is the fate that Thomas Perkins feels awaits America’s richest citizens if people who are not as “successful” don’t stop criticizing them.

The Wall Street Journal letter was not Thomas Perkins’ first awkward literary venture. He is also the author of the 2006 novel, Sex and the Single Zillionaire.

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Comments

5 Responses to “Capitalist Thomas Perkins Says The Rich Are Persecuted Like Jews In Nazi Germany”

  1. Itsthe Law

    A lot of successful people achieve there goal on the backs of others, I know they wont wish to admit this but surely there huge amounts of money in their pockets must help with this affliction.

  2. Walter Bachner

    Mr. Perkins, in Israel we have a Holocaust Museum called Yad Vashem, where they have managed to collect and document the names of three million of the six million Jews who were exterminated in the Holocaust.

    I was able to research my family name, and I found that 298 Bachner's were murdered in the Nazi death camps.

    ALL I CAN SAY TO YOU, MR.PERKINS, IS HOW DARE YOU COMPARE YOUR FANTASY OF PERSECUTION TO THE SUFFERING OF THE SIX MILLION INNOCENT HELPLESS JEWS WHO WERE SLAUGHTERED IN THE HOLOCAUST. SHAME ON YOU, SIR!

  3. Jim Morris

    A guy who was mentored at the best possible moment in US history for venture capitalism, by a guy that was actually trying to help WWII vets and the result is- an Uber wealthy dick who helped tear down the US economy of the 1950's and replace it with the same Weimar type capitalism system here. Then he claims he's the victim, wow!