Monday, March 27, 2006

A modest suggestion
Mustang Bobby posted this heartfelt plea from Katrina Vanden Heuvel.
Here's a modest proposal for improving national political discussion: Stop equating our opponents with famous dictators, their chief executioners, police apparatus or ideologies. I'm all for learning from history, but times are hard enough in American politics -- with war, threats to national security, the greatest divide between rich and poor in our history and deep cultural divisions. Present differences deserve to be described in contemporary terms.

I have a better idea, let's retire the tired old dictators and organizations and expand our historical literacy by insulting each other with an all new set of dictators and organizations. We can award points for obscurity of references. Say good bye to Hitler, Stalin, Castro, Chamberlain, Goebbels, Beria, Communists, Fascists, and Nazis and hello to Hoxa, Domitian, Rankovic, Emperor Bokassa, Abdul-Hamid II, Stroessner, the Arrow Cross, Kempetai, and Maximalists.

Bush is as much a good neighbor as Francisco Solano López, as generous as Hetty Green, and as smart as Ferdinand I (not that one, the other one).

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