How to recognize a fool

Well there’s our problem. When wingnuts see a man with swastikas tattooed on his body, they think that’s antifa. Sorry, guy, that’s just the fa.

Although it should be said that the guy with the tats has seen the error of his ways, and has repudiated Naziism. You can’t judge a man by the mistakes of his past, I guess.

This, by the way, is Chris Loesch. Scraggly bearded, skimpy mustached Chris Loesch, who is so vain that he thinks curling a sparse few hairs with wax makes him look good.

That’s just an ongoing mistake. I’ll forgive him after he apologizes for his deeper crimes against humanity.


  1. raven says

    He also has a few crosses tattooed across his stomach.
    I guess crosses and swastikas go together well.

  2. cartomancer says

    I mean, I know it’s tempting to do something eye-catching to distract from early-onset dad body, but a T-shirt is generally a far better bet than carving racism into your clavicle.

  3. Pierce R. Butler says

    raven @ # 1: I guess crosses and swastikas go together well.

    At least in western usage, they’re variations on the same theme.

    The German term for the latter is hakenkreuz, or “hooked cross”. I’ve met numerous English-fluent Germans who don’t recognize the (Sanskrit) word “swastika” at all.

  4. cartomancer says


    Interesting that. It was actually a German – Heinrich Schliemann – who popularised the usage of swastika to refer to the wheeled cross at the end of the 19th Century. He chose a Sanskrit word to describe the symbols as discovered in his excavations at Hissarlik (Turkey) because comparative philology was a new and exciting field of research at that time, and the connections between Indian and European languages were only just becoming apparent. Schliemann and others theorised that the symbol was a part of the original Indo-European culture that gave rise to all the European languages apart from Basque, and so thought it deserved an Indian name. Germanic ideas about a superior Aryan culture, culminating in the horrors of the Third Reich, built on that. Prior to Schliemann it was normal to use a local term to describe the symbol, so in Anglo-Saxon contexts it was a fylfot, in Greek contexts a tetragammadion, and so forth.

  5. Akira MacKenzie says

    You underestimate the degree to which the far-right and their allies will go to control the narrative and gaslight the public. You see, according to them, racist white supremacy is a ruse. American “Patriots” love non-whites, they love them so much that they’re will to let them pull-themselves up by their boot straps rather than give them welfare and bring them to accept Jesus as their personal lord and savior. The Klan–WHICH WAS FOUNDED BY DEMOCRATS!!!– and the Nazis–WHO WERE SOCIALISTS!!!–are really leftist agitators frightening non-whites into supporting their Globalist, Socialist, Satanic plan to rule the world. The man in that picture is REALLY a Marx-reading anarchist whose willing to get Naz tats, spout so-called “racist” slurs, and shoot up black churches and mosques to dived America, keep non-whites from finding solidarity with Patriots to prevent them from stoping the NEW WORLD ORDER from being established.

    Gah! I’ve been listening to too much Knowledge Fight.

  6. MattP (must mock his crappy brain) says

    Oof. And I thought my white trash stash was bad.

    Always thought it was just a good joke, but as I age the hair really does seem to be migrating from my forehead down my back and out my ears.

  7. Pierce R. Butler says

    cartomancer @ # 4 – Thanks for the backgrounder.

    … in Anglo-Saxon contexts it was a fylfot…

    I have seen it claimed that the (figure we now call) swastika in old Norse runes served as a “th” sound, leading to a German WWI ace painting it on the wings of his plane to signify Thor. The same source noted that said pilot got his picture – with plane – in the newspapers a lot (possibly inspiring a certain corporal to use it in his later political career) – and that the ace was Jewish.

    This ranges quite a bit from your major bailiwick, but I still feel the urge to ask whether you can confirm or contradict.

  8. jrkrideau says

    Hey, let’s not knock “Swastika”. It is a very nice little village in Northern Ontario.

    Back in the early days of WWII, there was a motion to change the name but it failed as the villagers said that they came before the Nazis and they would be there when the Nazis were gone.

  9. chrislawson says

    I’m sure this is not a stupid mistake but a very deliberate attempt to smear anti-fa to a confused old Fox-friendly audience.

  10. blf says

    Pierce R Butler@7, From Ye Pfffft! of All Knowledge:

    Vizefeldwebel Fritz Beckhardt (27 March 1889 – 13 January 1962), was a German Jewish fighter ace in World War I. The Nazis later expunged him from Luftwaffe history because his valorous war record of 17 aerial victories belied their assertions that Jews were inherently cowardly.


    Rather ironically, Vizfeldwebel Beckhardt’s personal insignia, which was featured on at least three of his airplanes, was a Swastika; however, the swastika at that time was not yet a Nazi symbol, and Beckhardt’s swastika turned in the opposite direction to the Nazi one.

    There is also an entire article, Western use of the swastika in the early 20th century.

  11. cartomancer says

    Pierce R. Butler, #7,

    I’m not familiar with the Jewish fighter ace story, but the idea that the swastika symbol might have represented the god Thor is older than the First World War (speculations can be found in late 19th Century German antiquarian debates). The evidence is slight and founded on many assumptions, not least that it is used in other cultures as a thunderbolt symbol associated with a thunder god. The further stretch that it was sounded phonetically as “th” seems unlikely, given that most runic alphabets, including the Elder Futhark that was used in Norse regions, had the much more well-known “thurs” symbol (Þ) for the “th” sound, which was known as “thorn” in Anglo-Saxon contexts. Indeed, there is only really one runic inscription – that on the Saebo Sword, much faded – that might be a candidate for the use of the swastika in a phonetic capacity. It is much more likely just to be a good luck charm.

  12. wzrd1 says

    I don’t get it, is he saying that gynecomastia is a sign someone is antifa? Has he looked in a mirror recently?

  13. Pierce R. Butler says

    And (shame on me for not refreshing the page!) thanks to cartomancer @ # 11!

  14. cartomancer says

    There is, however, the rune Gibor, which is a swastika with only two hooked bars, that forms a part of the Armanen Futharkh alphabet. That’s a “g” sound, not “th”, though.

    The Armanen runes were invented in 1906 by the German mystic Guido von List. Most of them are derived from actual runic alphabets used in the Middle Ages, but Gibor was invented by List to stand for the all-powerful and unknown “eighteenth rune” mentioned in the final stanza of the 13th century Havamal poem, describing Odin’s rune magic.

    Early 20th Century German mysticism took these runes and made quite a thing of them. Himmler was very keen on that kind of stuff. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the Nazi swastika was based just as much on List’s Gibor rune as the historic sun wheels that Schliemann felt were a distinctive symbol of the original Indo-European culture.

  15. blf says

    One possibility is the “thinking” goes something like this: Antifa are scum because they oppose me. Scum are rioting. Therefore scum are antifa. That’s perhaps about a dozen too many steps, not to mention too many syllables, so another version might be Not police means antifa or similar (No sign red ‘moran’, duh, antifa, ugh!!!).

  16. blf says

    (Cross-posted from poopyhead’s current [Pandemic and] Political Madness al the Time thread.)

    Oh good grief, now teh wannabe-dalek codenamed Barr is going all hair furorshite, from the Grauniad’s current live States politics / pandemic blog:

    Barr claims evidence Antifa instigating violence

    At a press conference in Washington on Thursday, Attorney General William Barr said federal law enforcement officers had gathered intelligence that extremist groups including Antifa had hijacked peaceful protests over the death of George Floyd, seeking to incite violence and destruction.

    We have evidence, Barr said, that Antifa and other similar extremist groups, as well as actors of a variety of different political persuasions, have been involved in instigating and participating in the violent activity.


    Barr added: We are also seeing foreign actors playing all sides to exacerbate the violence.

    Pressed by a reporter about why he mentioned Antifa as opposed to “boogaloo” or other far-right extremist elements, Barr said there was a witches brew a lot of different extremist organizations trying to exploit the protests.

    Federal forces have taken over Washington’s response to the unrest, under Barr’s direction. All of the justice department components — including the FBI, the US Marshals, the Bureau of Prisons, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Drug Enforcement Administration — have been tapped to respond to violence and looting.

    Questions have been raised about such officers appearing in public — and being used to control the public — without identifying marks or insignia on their uniforms.


    BOP director Michael Carvajal said officers were not told to not identify themselves. He said they normally operate only with their own institutions and therefore don’t need to identify themselves. He added that he probably should have considered marking the officers when they were deployed outside the White House.

  17. KG says

    Although it should be said that the guy with the tats has seen the error of his ways, and has repudiated Naziism.

    Hmm. I’d want a little more evidence than his unsupported word. After all, if you were a Nazi who wanted to attend a BLM protest to sabotage it in some way, but had visible Nazi tatoos, what else would you say? He claims he’s been trying to get rid of the tatoos. I understand tatoos can be hard to erase, but is there any evidence that he’s tried?

  18. Pierce R. Butler says

    cartomancer @ # 15: … the historic sun wheels that Schliemann felt were a distinctive symbol of the original Indo-European culture.

    Which reminds me of the sun symbol of the Natchez* Indians, though I can’t find it online at present: imagine a swastika drawn with all curves and no straight lines, like two S’s overlaid at right angles.

    *Correctly pronounced as if written in French, though today spoken universally as if in English.

  19. robro says

    Oh, that Chris Loesch…aka husband and manager of Dana Loesch, darling of the NRA and one of the worst performers I’ve ever seen. She gave new meaning to the phrase “over the top” fulminating about Second Amendment rights. I can just imagine this guy with the wimpy handlebars and Ho Chi Minh beard egging her on.

  20. blf says

    the sun symbol of the Natchez Indians, though I can’t find it online at present: imagine a swastika drawn with all curves and no straight lines, like two S’s overlaid at right angles.

    Like what is apparently on their flag? That doesn’t quite match the description, it’s more like two interlocking ovals with a few straight lines, albeit basically all-curved.

  21. says

    @Pierce R. Butler #3:
    In Norwegian it’s known as “hakekors”, a direct translation of the German word. In Danish it’s “hagekors”, in Sweden it’s “hakkors”. Iceland is “Hakakross”. We’re not very imaginative up here. Avoiding polar bears and staving off frostbite tends to be the main priority.

  22. chuckonpiggott says

    Damn, that is a sorry assed mustache. Wasn’t til I looked at his profile I realized what he’s married to. Gah.

  23. Pierce R. Butler says

    blf @ # 21 – That’s an interesting design, but it’s not the one I remember seeing at the museum at the “Grand Village of the Natchez Indians” (about ten miles from my ancestral home). Nor could I find that symbol in another half-hour-plus of web prowling, alas.

    Erlend Meyer @ # 22 – Don’t worry, in another generation or so you can prioritize sunscreen and avoiding fire ants, like the rest of us.

  24. says

    @KG #18: Fair point. Although I suspect that fanatics like that just won’t stoop to that. As far as I know there’s no controlling organ with any detectable goal or strategy, and fanatics tend to have very harsh internal justice. So it would probably be suicide to try to re-enter any brotherhood of like-minded after such a ploy.

  25. John Morales says

    wzrd1 @12, best comment as it is the most apposite, not just plausible.

  26. wzrd1 says

    @John Morales @26, well, you’ve not saw me with my shirt off. Didn’t know that was one of the effects of Graves’ disease.
    Still, anti-fascism is simply a side effect of being a decent person.

  27. Pierce R. Butler says

    Hrrmm. Back to the OP, and the article it cites. That article in turn cites an interview with the swastika(etc)-tattooed man, one Dylan Gentry, who “reportedly appeared at a local ​George Floyd protest ​to show solidarity with demonstrators and to renounce his prior neo-Nazi beliefs.”

    All well and good, it seems. Except… the main Ocala newspaper is called the Ocala Star-Banner (often the “Star-Blunder” by area cynics), and the “Ocala News” looks an awful lot like part of the array of bogus local news sites that Right Wing Watch, among others, has warned us about…

  28. logicalcat says

    I just had a crazy conversation with a trunp voting friend of a friend who was so adamant that trump cannot be fascist because real fascists are left wing including nazis. And thats before I saw this post.

    Thats there new strategy to delude themselves into supporting trump. Expect to see more of this.

  29. wzrd1 says

    @logicalcat, ran into that inanity a long time ago.
    Apparently, the excuse for thinking goes, Nazis were fascists, Nazis called their party the National Socialist German Workers Party, so they were socialists and socialists are left wing. Quite the rollercoaster ride into toon town!
    Their logical is so twisted and tortured, an epileptic snake couldn’t match its twists and turns. The main stock of course, is fear, fear told to them to fear by their betters and swallowed hook, line and sinker.
    Of course, they cannot define what socialism, communism or capitalism is on a bet and totally mangle things into an unrecognizable mess.

    I’ve found the missing link! Now, whereinhell is that chain… ;)
    I’ll just grab my hat…

  30. wzrd1 says

    Shit. Just pulled Johns Hopkins data.
    108,208 dead in the US. Expect more insanity to distract from that horrific number.
    I think I’m going to get sick. :(

  31. John Morales says

    Can’t dispute that the National Socialist German Workers’ Party was about as socialist as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is democratic.


  32. whheydt says

    Re: raven @ #1…
    The connection is easy. Belt buckle slogan: Gott Mitt Uns.

  33. whheydt says

    Re: wzrd1 @ #30…
    I would think an epileptic snake would be straight…at least when having a seizure. Can’t claim to have ever dealt with one, but I have dealt with an epileptic cat. During a seizure, a cat is sharp everywhere.

  34. John Morales says

    wzrd1 @32,
    (1) the Powers That Be can work out 108,208 ÷ 329,227,746; and
    (2) that number is almost certainly an under-estimate; but
    (3) most who perish are… um, let’s just say, not the elite; and
    (4) it’s a great excuse to justify even more authoritarian rules and restrictions.

    So… what’s the prob?


  35. KG says

    Thats there new strategy to delude themselves into supporting trump. – logicalcat@29

    The “Nazis were left-wing” lie goes back decades. I still have a cutting from the Grauniad, dated 1st September 1977, which includes a letter from me, in respose to the same claim made by a glibertarian numpty called Michael Ivens. My letter “supports” Ivens, saying that his revelation rivals in importance my own discovery that Attila the Hun was actually a Welsh nationalist, and regreting that Ivens had not been around to warn the Krupps of Hitler’s real aims.

    What the liars always leave unexplained and unmentioned is the sources of support for and opposition to the Nazis, and Fascism more generally: the support from big business, the army, the Catholic hierarchy, “respectable” conservatives (“Hurrah for the Blackshirts” as the British Daily Mail put it in reference to the British Union of Fascists – hence its enduring nickname as the “Daily Heil”); the opposition from socialists, communists*, anarchists, trades unions, etc. Of course both Mussolini and Hitler were willing to use pesudo-leftist rhetoric when they thought it would benefit them, and there were elements in the NSDAP, such as the Strasser brothers, who took the “Socialist” part of the name somewhat more seriously; Hitler showed what he thought of them in the 1934 “Night of the Long Knives”.

    *They often do mention the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, ignoring the fact that it was a cynical tactical ploy on both sides, widely recognised as such at the time; neither Hitler nor Stalin intended to keep to it a day longer than it suited their interests.