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July 17, 2005
Will Someone Please Teach Godwin's Law To Congress?

Can ... we ... PLEASE ... get Congressmen and Senators to throw away the Nazi analogies? Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ) became the latest idiot to get impaled on a historical swastika when he attempted to paint Islamofascist terrorists as worse than Nazis. That may have escaped notice, but then LoBiondo decided to up the ante by crediting Hitler with a rational motivation for killing six million Jews:

Congressman Frank LoBiondo apologized for suggesting that Guantanamo Bay detainees were worse than Adolf Hitler because the Nazi dictator "sort of had a political rationale about what he was doing."

The New Jersey Republican made the remark on a radio talk show this past week, describing his recent visit to the Naval Base in Cuba. Muslim terrorists, he said, were more evil than Hitler.

"Hitler, in his philosophy, was, you know, he hated Jews, he was murdering Jews, and there were some people he liked. But he never went to the level that these people are going to," LoBiondo said.

LoBiondo had the intelligence to immediately retract the statement a few minutes later, profusely apologizing and completely abandoning the argument. That shows that LoBiondo has more political savvy than Senator Dick Durbin, who clung to his genocidal trifecta for days until Mayor Richard Daley stung him with a demand for an apology. However, that probably qualifies as damning with faint praise; getting compared favorably with Durbin doesn't take much besides being able to breathe with one's mouth shut.

When will our politcians understand that Nazi analogies amount to an almost-certain political jinx? We don't need to debate the relative merits of one form of fascism and oppression over another; they're all bad, grown-ups know it, and those who don't won't learn anything from sound bites like these. Members of both parties have had their hands scorched playing with this particular form of rhetorical fire often enough in recent days that others should have already learned to avoid these analogies at all costs.

We're not even asking for brilliance here, people. Just plain common sense. If you are an elected official, and the word "Nazi" starts to escape your lips, please please PLEASE squeeze them shut.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at July 17, 2005 6:27 PM

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» Captain Ed: Please Learn Godwin's Law from The Anti Corn Law League
Captain Ed has it right on the money when he admonishes elected officials to eliminate the word "Nazi" from their vocabulary. Apparently, Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ) is the latest elected official to step in a swastika-shaped bear trap. [Read More]

Tracked on July 18, 2005 12:59 AM

» Can there be another reason for the overuse of the Nazi comparison? from Danny Carlton: codenamed "Jack Lewis"
Captain's Quarters points out yet another politician using the Nazi comparison to attack an opponent. First there's the problem of... [Read More]

Tracked on July 18, 2005 6:07 AM

» Saying Something Stupid Like... from The Loudest Cricket
When a Democrat says something stupid, the left defends and the right attacks. When a Republican says something stupid, the left attacks and the right, well, attacks too.... [Read More]

Tracked on July 18, 2005 1:18 PM

» I concur . . . from
The Captain is dead on about asking (no, begging) Congress and politicians in general, to stop invoking Goodwin's Law when they want to bitch about one side or the other: When will our politcians understand that Nazi analogies amount to... [Read More]

Tracked on July 19, 2005 12:16 PM

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