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YMMV / The Decline of the West

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  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Spengler himself did this with several historical characters. For example, in his opinion Emperor Augustus wasn't really a great man and rather led by his soldiers (Julius Caesar's veterans) than the other way round.
  • Fair for Its Day:
    • At a time when antisemites would spread crazy, vitriolic conspiracy theories about Jews controlling the world, Spengler was adamantly opposed to such sentiments. He acknowledged that the Jews had a different culture than mainstream Germans, but he strongly disagreed with the notion that they were responsible for society's ills and felt it was best to let them live their lives in peace. He reasoned that unfairly singling them out would be ill-advised, not just because the various Jewish business-owners, bankers, intellectuals, and artists played a valuable role in German society, but also because it would needlessly create suffering that would eventually affect all levels of society. He ended up being vindicated on this matter, given that continued Nazi rule resulted in the Holocaust and the veritable destruction of Germany, leading to the pointless deaths of many Jews and Germans alike.
    • To Spengler's credit, race doesn't play a big part in his observations of historical currents. His pessimistic outlook on humanity is nothing if not egalitarian. In fact, his insistence that Western civilization wasn't inherently unique or superior compared to past non-European ones was fairly radical for the time, given that academia was still predominantly eurocentric (i.e., history focused primarily on European civilization and subscribed to the notion of the white race's superiority).
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: There's a small group of people (but consider that nowadays few people read Spengler in general) in Russia who like Spengler because he predicted that in the future, a new culture might develop in Russia (and probably bring the country to greatness).
  • Harsher in Hindsight: After another round of vicious wars, America has pretty much become the dominant power of the West as per Rome just like Spengler predicted.
  • Values Dissonance: As one can guess, most of Spengler views show in the book apart from those listed under Fair for Its Day wouldn't fly well with readers these days - his opposition to democracy, his support for "Caesars"/dictators, his open disgust towards the press and his dislike of free market capitalism and socialism (outside of "prussian" socialism, that is) will probably turn away quite a few readers from it.