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Polish "jokes" came from Nazi propaganda

 
 
Setanta
 
  3  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 02:53 pm
@literarypoland,
Wars and bad neighbors? Try an impossible constitution, the point of which was to enshrine the power of a few powerful families at the expense of anything like a nation. You had a diet which elected a King, who was made responsible for a state he couldn't control, and responsible for financing a state he could not tax. The grubbiest Pan with his shirttail hanging out in the Diet could veto any measure. It reached its nadir when during the great northern war, Saxon, Swedish and Russian armies marched across a supine state which was not and never had been a nation. By the time the Prussians, Russians and Austrians began to partition Poland, the egos, greed and stupidity of Poland's leading families had destroyed whatever slim chance Poland ever had of being a nation.
literarypoland
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 03:56 pm
@Setanta,
Why insult the Polish nation and me as its member? You think that insulted I will grow more talkative? This worked in Vietnam, sometimes.
I'm not emotional, especially sitting in front of a computer.
Patriotism allowed Poles to survive the partition.
I know that Americans have complexes towards all old European kingdoms, but it's just history, at present we know who is the dominant force in technology, culture, medicine - America.
And generally, it's good to be a young nation, you can attack the old crumbling empires (Babylonia?) and introduce a new order.
dagmaraka
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 04:07 pm
@literarypoland,
you choose to be insulted. history is only insulting to those who live off of myths.
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 04:31 pm
@Setanta,
Good one Smile
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 04:32 pm
@Ragman,
Oooooh very punny
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 04:39 pm
@georgeob1,
I wish I had my library here .. I had this great collection of short stories and fragments from novels, sampled from the last 200 years of Russian literature or so, illustrating the image of the German. Some funny stuff in there, much along the lines of your joke.

Great posts here, by the way.
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 06:23 pm
@dagmaraka,
Dagmaraka wrote:
History is only insulting to those who live off of myths.

Thanks for my new sig line, dagmaraka
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 08:53 pm
@nimh,
Oh . . . you know about the Swiss, too, huh?
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 09:17 pm
@literarypoland,
You weave a tapestry from your fantasies, and while heaping obloquy on the Americans, you whine about the Poles being insulted. I'm not insulting the Poles as a people, but i'll be more than happy to blame the Radziwills, the Czartoryskis and a few other select Lithuanian-Polish families who destroyed any chance for a true Polish nation by creating an impossible government.

The Poles elected Sigismund Vasa of Sweden to be their King, and he promptly attempted to join Poland-Lithuania with Sweden and impose Catholicism on the Swedes, who were by then resolutely Lutheran. He was deposed from the Swedish throne, and thereafter plotted to retake the Swedish crown. When his nephew, Gustav II Adolf became King, Sigismund tried to force him to renounce the throne. When that failed, he decided the time was ripe to go to war, and in the name of Catholicism, the "great families" of Poland decided to back that stupid play. Gustav defeated the Polish definitively in 1629, after less than five years of war.

Then in 1697, the Poles elected Augustus of Saxony as their King. Augustus immediately began plotting war against the Swedes, and enlisted the Danes and the Russians to join him, instigating the Great Northern War. He had allowed himself to be convinced by Johann Patkul that the Swedes and their young king could easily be defeated, and that Augustus could then add Livonia to his "kingdom." The Poles went along with that, but when actually threatened with an invasion by Charles XII's victorious army, tried to make believe that they could twist the Swedish lion's tail, and then claim the war was being waged by Augustus as a Saxon, and had nothing to do with them. Of course, that didn't stop Saxon, Swedish and Russian armies from marching across Poland at will and fighting pitched battles on Polish soil.

Bad neighbors indeed. Dashenka is completely correct--you are only insulted by my refusal to buy your historical myths. The Polish people (and by extension, the Lithuanians) have suffered from the rapacious greed and arrogant indifference of aristocratic Lithuanian-Polish families who would rather see the commonwealth hamstrung with the liberum veto and a powerless, elected foreign King than to give up an ounce of their personal power, or renounce their feuds with the other leading families. The tragedy of Polish history is a function of the greed of those families, and it is no insult to the Polish people to point out how they were exploited by their own nobility.
literarypoland
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 03:12 am
@Setanta,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_election

Look, it was all "logical".
If you look at the list of Polish elected kings, some of them were great leaders - Bathory, Sobieski.
Don't count the Saxons as a mistake because then Russia was already meddling in our politics. Poland had had the good luck for centuries that Russia was weak, wild, weakened by Mongols, and Germany was a medley of small states, unable to unite, destroyed during the 30 Years' War. Heaven had protected us against those future enemies.
The Vasas managed to form a dynasty - well, maybe bad luck here, because this was not the best of dynasties for Poland. But the first Vasa king was a nephew of Catherine Jagiellon, so was seen as a continuator of the Jagiellon dynasty. And he was a Catholic, whom we needed.
Generally, I believe that the fall of Poland was orchestrated, mainly by Russia, who involved also the Prussian king. By various manoeuvres, Russians gradually erased our kingdom - which is a rather heavy punishment for any state.
Punishment for what? For our attack on Russia and occupation of Moscow around 1612. Poland was afterwards seen as a megathreat for Muscovy, to be obliterated. Russians still remember that occupation and celebrate liberation from Polish invaders. It was a brutal occupation of whole Russia, led by Polish mercenaries, outcasts, and bands of peasants, the latter mainly from the Ukraine. Russia, then already quite civilized, was humiliated, gold was stolen, women, even noble ones, raped.
Let's add that it was one of few attempts of colonial policy by Poland, which shows the hand of our Vasa king in the whole operation. At the same time his uncle attacked from the north-west, cutting Russia off from the Baltic.
literarypoland
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 03:39 am
OK, Setanta and Dagmaraka are on my Ignore list now. We were going nowhere, just going on and on, without any progress.
This means I can't see your posts.
dagmaraka
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 04:18 am
@literarypoland,
hahaha, brilliant. that's one way to approach reality...to just ignore facts that don't fit with it. that just made my day.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 08:26 am
@Setanta,
Didn't need to, the joke kind of explains itself .. we could hve mde it about the Belgins Smile
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 08:44 am
@literarypoland,
I made a distinction about electing foreigners to be Polish Kings, and it was precisely because someone like Sobieski had such power from the admiration of the people, and even of the Germans that the powerful families of Poland began to choose foreign kings--they didn't want to be challenged by someone who could appeal to popularity. It is utter bullshit that Russia was meddling in Polish affairs when Augustus of Saxony was elected. At that time Karelia, Ingria and Livonia were in Swedish hands, and the rest of the Baltic littoral was under Swedish hegemony. The Russians weren't interfering in Polish affairs because it was not until after the Great Northern War that Russia had a contiguous border with the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth. It was not until the Russians were defeated at Narva, recovered and went over to the offensive that Russian cavalry began to launch raids into Livonia. You can't live in some dream world in which everything Polish is good and pure and everything Russian is evil and foul just because you don't want to face the facts of your own people's history.

You continue to make **** up. Your narrative is all over the road. The Thirty Years war took place long after the Vasa dynasty was founded, and it didn't "destroy" Germany. Gustav Vasa, the founder of the dynasty may originally have been a Catholic, but then, everyone in Sweden when he took the throne was at least nominally a Catholic. But, in fact, he cemented his power with the Swedish people by assuring the establishment of Lutheranism. And Gustav Vasa became King in 1523, 95 years before the Thirty Years War began.

The brief Polish occupation of Moscow was a joke, the last gasp of a dying power. The Polish puppet Tsar was soon defeated, and stuffed into a cannon on the walls of the Kremlin, and shot back toward Poland. In the following year, 1613, the Boyars chose Mikhail Romanov to be Tsar, and he agree only on condition that he could choose his successor. When his son Alexei reached adulthood, Mikhail convened the Boyars again, and secured their acceptance of his succession, thus establishing the Romanov dynasty, the last imperial dynasty of Russia. The Russians immediately did not march out to attempt to "obliterate" Poland--all that Mikhail and Alexei did was drive the Poles from Russian land--boo hoo for you.

The arrogance and hubris of Polish aristocrats erased your kingdom, you can't dance and sing and whine to your heart's content, but your nobility brought down up the Polish people all the miseries of the last 300+ years, from the Great Northern War onward. It is pure historical bullshit to attempt to blame this on the Russians, or claim that it was the result of the policy of a Vasa king, a king, by the way, elected by the Poles.

I'm glad that you have me on ignore, because i am so sick of your bullshit. But other people need to get a more balanced treatment of Polish history, and anyone else of Polish descent who had the misfortune to read your threads needs to know how the rapacity and arrogance of a handful of powerful Polish-Lithuanian families destroyed Poland.
dagmaraka
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 09:12 am
@Setanta,
oh, she'll read it alright....for some reason i think it's a she. it's easy to just click on collapsed posts. one way or another, she's a lost case.
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 02:42 pm
I think Setanta has provided an accurate and fairly complete description of the contribution to Poland's misfortunes provided by the persistent follies of the Polish landed nobility.

In addition I also suspect that a location between conflicting cultures to the East & West (and occasionally North) - Russia, Germany and Sweden; together with the absence of any defensible frontiers with them; also played a part.

I believe that the Polish jokes that are the original subject of this thread are - like all the other ethnic/tribal jokes that have likely long been a part of human discorse - all built on similar themes and created/repeated for the same reasons, whether they take the form of Polish jokes, Italian jokes, Irish jokes, Jewish jokes, Negro jokes, or whatever. It is simply "us" vs "them".

Once long ago while spending a quiet afternoon in the St. John's College library I came across a volume with a then enchanting title "An Anthology of 11th century Islamic Literature". As I thumbed through it, I came across a section devoted to short, easily readable pieces. They were in effect a collection of "Frank" jokes - amusing stories about the perceived oddities of the "Franks" (the English, French, German, and Italian Crusaders) who invaded Palestine) . There were stories about the stupid Frank, the boorish Frank, the unclean Frank, the cuckold Frank and many other familiar themes that were the central themes of all the ethnic jokes I had ever heard. I realized then that these stories were probably already very old when the volume at hand was written, and all had earlier lives probably as stories about Hittites, Assyrians, Egyptians and Sythicans, etc.

I think that is where Polish jokes really came from. I have no doubt that the Nazis did their bit to help.
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 03:27 pm
if only i could remember all the jokes i heard in my short life-span , i could fill several books .
german jokes about other germans alone are quite numerous (and those are about 50 years old) .

question : what do two thirsty and starving germans do when they meet in the sahara desert ?
answer : they form a club !

and a different version :

question : what do two thirsty and hungry germans do when they meet in the sahara desert
answer : they write postcards to all their family members and friends telling them what a good time they are having !

the german magazine SIMPLICISIMUS was almost exclusively devoted to germans making jokes about other germans - particularly about royalty , the officer corps and the rich .
many of their editors and writers fled germanyfrom time to time , others were imprisoned , even before WW I for offending german royalty (majestaets beleidigung) .
hbg

one of their scathing illustrations - this one portrays the "re-education of german(prussian) diplomats " .

http://germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org/images/30013099-r.jpg

it shows how german diplomats that were contaminated under bismack are now successfullly being cleansed at the "berlin academy for diplomats" - probably from about 1900 .
certainly did not sit well with the government of the day !
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 05:07 pm
@georgeob1,
Quote:
In addition I also suspect that a location between conflicting cultures to the East & West (and occasionally North) - Russia, Germany and Sweden; together with the absence of any defensible frontiers with them; also played a part.


Yes, this is certainly true. With no effective government, and a selfish aristocracy who had no sense of a Polish nation, and put their own interests before any others, Poland had little chance. She really never progressed past the point France was at in the reign of Charles le bien aimé, in the Hundred Years War, when the powerful royal dukes, his uncles, sat back and watched his madness and the disintegration of France.
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 06:40 pm
@hamburger,
One German joke I remember that was very often repeated among the Irish where I grew up concerned Pat and Mike who were attending mass at St Dominic's - a Catholic parish in the German neighborhood where even the sermons were in Bavarian German.

As they looked around the two Irishmen noticed that the congregation around them were all nodding their heads progressively lower and then at intervals snapping them upright.

"What the hell are they doin" said Pat to Mike ?

"Waiting for the verb" said Mike.
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 07:10 pm
@georgeob1,
thanks , george !
i like those kinds of jokes !
when i was growing up in germany there were a lot of jokes about the scots - but haven't heard any lately .

we also enjoyed jokes being told about germans trying to speak english .

young german fellow working in england is looking for a pillow .
since he has learned out that quite a few english and german words sound similar , he thinks he knows how to ask for a pillow . the german word for a pillow is "kissen" and he has heard the word "kiss" being said .
"aha ! " , he says to himself , "that must be it : the german kissen is the english kiss " .
so he goes into a store and asks : "may i have a kiss , please ? " .
the young shop girl looks at him and since he is quite good looking , purses her lips and offers them to him .
"NEIN , NEIN ! " , he shouts , and pointing first at his lips and then at his backside says : "NOT kiss here but kiss THERE " .
perhaps a fat lip was the result - or perhaps not - who knows .
hbg

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