"Read the message". I regret the use of that word [Kristallnacht]. It was a terrible misjudgment. I do not regret the message at all" Any time the majority starts to demonize any minority, no matter what it is, it is wrong and dangerous. No good ever comes from it". The letter said what I believed. And I believe we have to be careful that we do not demonize anybody and that we don't demonize the most creative part [of society, the rich]."
He presented attractively on TV: mild-mannered, thoughtful, coherent, and responsive to the questions he was asked. But he wasn't asked why he thought it was all right to demonize "progressive radicalism" as the "descendant" of a deliberate Nazi mass atrocity. He wasn't even asked directly what he meant by "progressive radicalism." He wasn't asked if he had ever protested against the demonization of any other minority besides "the rich."
"Writing from the epicenter of progressive thought, San Francisco, 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." -- Tom Perkins, 2014, in the Wall Street Journal
He did not apologize for, much less disown this opinion with which he started his letter. He was not asked to explain how the Nazi government of his childhood could be compared to the anti-government protestors of his old age. He was not asked how "the rich" (including George W. Bush's grandfather) who supported the Nazis into power had somehow become victims even though "the rich" in America mostly compete with each other to own the party in power in the United States.
"I, like many, have tried to understand the 20th century, and the incomprehensible evil of the Holocaust. It cannot be explained. Even to try to explain it is questionable. It was evil," Perkins told Bloomberg TV, before he explained what led him to use "Kristallnacht" in his comparison of Occupy demonstrators to German Nazis:
"I used the word because, during the Occupy of San Francisco by the Occupy Wall Street crowd, they broke the windows in the Wells Fargo Bank. They marched up through our automobile strip. They broke all of the windows in all of the luxury car dealerships. I saw that. I remember that the police just stood by. I thought: this is how that began. That word [Kristallnacht] was in my mind."
Nazi analogies are a common irrelevance in American political discourse, and have been for decades (Godwin's law, also known as Godwin's law of Nazi Analogies, was framed Mike Godwin in 1990: "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1 in 1.").
In that sense, Perkins is merely reflecting a mindless zeitgeist, to which he was exposed in more extreme form as a director (now retired) at the News Corporation (which owns Fox News). [The same day the Journal published Perkins letter, Free Republic posted a more deeply paranoid piece titled "The Konservativ Kristallnacht is here" online.]