When is a Nazi Not a Nazi?

Which One?

PICK ONE DAMMIT! - Is Obama a Nazi, a Socialist, or a Communist. If you're going to call people names, at least pick an ideological position and stick with it.

When is a Nazi not a Nazi? Apparently after you parse your words closely enough to find a lame loophole to avoid what you said. Like Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Stupidville), for example.

It’s distressingly easy to find Democrats calling Republicans Nazis and Republicans calling Democrats both Nazis and socialists (Damn, I wish they’d get that straight). As expected, the recent calls for civility in the national discourse lasted about as long as it takes to call someone a Nazi or socialist.

Well, DUH.

I’m a believer in the George Carlin School of Linguistics – they’re only words. If you’re a politician and you can’t overcome your rage at being called a name – which in this case are perfectly acceptable definitions of political ideology – then you shouldn’t be in politics.

How did these particular, common words end up being so offensive?

Because people use them with meaning that aren’t there. Obama is not a socialist. In fact, for a lot of people he isn’t even liberal. The Boehner Boys aren’t Nazis either (for one thing Nazis were efficient and took pride in being called Nazis). BTW, there are other code words  twisted into new meanings. “Liberal” is one of the worst epithets in the conservative insult arsenal. Dems prefer “tea baggers” with almost equal vigor.

It’s a basic tenet of communications theory that if you say something long enough, it becomes “true”. And boy, howdy these get tossed around like candy at a pedophile parade.

Click photo for larger

They’re almost always created as lies, or at least gross exaggerations of the truth. The problem is that people soak them up and begin to give the words their own off-topic narratives to “prove” their label fits. It’s a good political ploy – distract the great unwashed with some kernels of improperly named ideas and then step back and watch things roll. It’s one hell of a lot easier than actually offering alternatives or explaining your position when in fact, there isn’t one…you (insert epithet here).

It’d be useful if politicians didn’t do that and really great if the plebes called them out on it. But, I reckon that’s about as likely as the recent goofy “solutions” for preventing lunatics from shooting at people actually working.

America’s problem isn’t civility – it’s a willful refusal to own what you say.

First, everyone buy a dictionary. It’s an invaluable tool here – that is if you can read.

Second, own what you say. If you proclaim someone a socialist, make sure Karl Marx would’ve used the word in the same way. And all you faux Nazi accusers, tell me Hitler wouldn’t have cheered on the continuance of his 1000-year Reich as the best thing since sliced brot.

But above all, stop parsing words to prove you didn’t say what you so obviously did say. It’s unbecoming, divisive, and stupid.

Mr. Carlin, sorry we didn’t get your punchline. We’re a slow-learning bunch.

Enhanced by Zemanta

The Pillsbury Newsboy and the NPR Nazis

Roger Ailes, the Pillsbury Newsboy, hates NPR. Thinks they’re a bunch of Nazis. That’s no surprise. Most Republicans hate them. This week they hate NPR because they fired that poor, beleaguered liberal Juan Williams for admitting he’s a pusillanimous ninny who pisses his Sansabelts at the mere sight of a Muslim, just like Ailes and his stable of the Biggest Gigantic Screeching Heads.

Conservatives like Roger like to whine that NPR is single-handedly crushing conservative discourse in this nation.  Apparently Roger has very low self-esteem evidenced by the fact that his conservative gab goobs crush all his liberal competitors, including NPR, in the ratings. I guess he’s not only irrationally afraid of Muslims, but liberals too.

Whadaya Know Fanatics at Risk
Now anyone, left or right, can make the legitimate case that NPR doesn’t deserve funding. It’s not exactly like they’re as influential as say, Newscorp. They serve a narrow audience of opera lovers and Whadya Know fanatics, so it’s a safe bet the nation won’t perish without them.

Yes, times are tight and the government could use the money, but in the time Congress takes to vote on this, they’ll have spent about 10 times NPR’s annual budget. But then, that’s the sort of spectacular financial acumen they used to drive us into the dumper to begin with.

You could legitimately argue that NPR and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting shouldn’t get government funds, but you could say the same thing about our other government corporationsAmtrak and the Postal Service. But if a politician is taking donations from the direct mail lobby, they should STFU. Ditto for all the Midwestern pols who cry like babies every time Amtrak cuts back. It’s ghastly that 12 of their constituents who board trains in their state each year will surely swoon without their subsidized rail service.

And, NPR may be a government corporation, but it’s still a corporation. It has a board of directors and everything,  just like Chevron (one of their sponsors). Whatever happened to deregulation and staying out of a corporation’s business? After all, part of the reason it isn’t self-sufficient is that Congress severely limits the ways it can collect money. Come to think of it, that may be answer to high oil prices…but there I go talking like a socialist again.

Look, this country is in deep trouble whether you think Obama is a Kenyan  Kommie intent on crashing the country like an Islamic hijacker or that Boehner and Mitch are trying lurch the country back to 1879 when men were men and women were women (who MitchBo and the Boys don’t think deserve equal pay for equal work).

Slapping the Faces of Creationists
I admit it, sometimes I listen to public radio or watch public TV. There’s some interesting stuff on there and the bulk of  it has no ideological bent at all – unless you count those documentaries about animal evolution as a slap to the face of Creationists everywhere.

Even so, I could go for defunding them even if the Dems won’t. It would only offset the deficit by the amount it took me to type this sentence, but I do get that it’s importantly symbolic. I can even sympathize that it’s wrong to use public monies for purely political purposes, but so are the bucketloads of cash Republicans piss away politically preening to the great unwashed.

But if you’re going to defund them, be honest. It’s not about the money. It’s not about the librul programming. It’s not about the threat All Things Considered poses to conservatism. It’s not even about Juan Williams. It’s about being pains in the ass for the sake of being pains in the ass.

So conservatives, if you’ll cop to that, I’ll gladly picket the local NPR outlet and demand they return last year’s pledge to me.

Enhanced by Zemanta