Contrary to the Marxists, the Nazis did not advocate public ownership of the
means of production. They did demand that the government oversee and run the
nation’s economy. The issue of legal ownership, they explained, is secondary;
what counts is the issue of control. Private citizens, therefore, may
continue to hold titles to property—so long as the state reserves to itself
the unqualified right to regulate the use of their property.
If “ownership” means the right to determine the use and disposal of material
goods, then Nazism endowed the state with every real prerogative of ownership.
What the individual retained was merely a formal deed, a contentless deed,
which conferred no rights on its holder. Under communism, there is collective
ownership of property de jure. Under Nazism, there is the same collective
ownership de facto.