Jul 4, 2009

Bernie Ecclestone on Hitler and getting things done

Oswald Mosley

During a bizarre interview with The Times Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula One chief, said that he has a preference for totalitarian regimes over democracies. He criticized modern democratic politicians as 'weak' and gave the nod to Adolf Hitler.

Ecclestone said that the Fuhrer was "a man who managed to get things done."

Perhaps realizing that cheerleading for Hitler might not go over too well, he added that the Nazi leader had 'lost his way,' was persuaded to do things by others and in the end wasn't a very good dictator.

His evident contempt for democracy also came across in the interview: 'It hasn't done a lot of good for many countries - including this one.'

Weirdness coming from the upper echelons of Formula One isn't altogether surprising. A while back another Formula One supremo, Max Mosley, son of former British fascist leader Oswald Mosley, was allegedly involved in a Nazi S&M orgy. Mosley sued the News of the World for breach of privacy after it claimed he had taken part in a concentration-camp themed orgy involving six prostitutes.

Ecclestone - a big Thatcher fan - thinks Max Mosley would make a spanking great British PM capable of whipping the country into shape. He added that he didn't think Mosley's background "would be a problem."

Given his totalitarian sympathies maybe Ecclestone would have been happier if Hitler had been more effective and actually pulled off an invasion of Britain. Just imagine... Formula One events would have had a whole different look... decked out with Nazi flags... races preceded by the mandatory singing of Deutschland Über Alles with Aryan models posing in bikinis and jackboots. However Bernie might have been short a billion and not so free to speculate in random ways about politics.

Hitler certainly did get a few things done including the invasion of Europe, the bombing of London and the murder of millions of Jews. Whether or not he was 'persuaded' makes none of this any less objectionable - a sentiment not included in Ecclestone's review of recent history.

Jewish groups and politicians have expressed outrage over Ecclestone's comments. Labor MP Denis MacShane said 'This contempt for the right of people to elect their own leaders in frankly frightening.'

Guardian article here.

Times article here.