I just received a call from a friend in Cairo (I won’t say who it is now because he’s a prominent activist) telling me neither his DSL nor his USB internet service is working. I’ve just checked with two other friends in different parts of Cairo and their internet is not working either.
You may be right; you may have a point — maybe Republicans are lying about healthcare reform. But if your point is to say that they’re lying, why do you have to go Nazi on them? You know, there’s already a perfectly good word for liars: liars. Lying doesn’t make you a Nazi. Lying isn’t even what made the Nazis Nazis. People at Auschwitz weren’t upset ‘cause they were lied to. ‘You said there’d be a pool!’
You know, I shouldn’t have to explain this, but sharing one attribute with Nazis doesn’t make you one. The Nazis marched with great precision — that doesn’t mean [this marching band] are Nazis! The Nazis were notorious for brown shirts. That doesn’t make [this UPS employee] a Nazi!
…We have been having a conversation about civility and honest discourse because a madman went on a shooting rampage. But the measure of our discourse is not the effect that it has on a madman; the measure is what effect is should have on a rational person. So let’s take you at your word: if you literally believe the Republicans are using tactics that, unchecked, could lead to the Holocaust, where does it leave a rational person?
So call out the lies. Say they’re being douchebags and assholes, or assbags and doucheholes, ‘cause the rational mind understands that, for the most part, those titles are situational and often temporary. ‘Cause when it comes to civility and honest discourse, I have no problem with coarseness: what I have a problem with is people using hyperbole to induce an irrational fear of a particular group with the goal of ultimately reducing their numbers. Hey, you know who else did that?
Germany: To buy a gun in Germany, anyone under the age of 25 has to pass a psychological exam (which Loughner would probably have failed). You also have to answer a 4,000-question licensing exam.
Finland: Handgun license applicants in Finland, which has some of Europe’s slackest gun laws, are only allowed to purchase firearms if they can prove they are active members of regulated shooting clubs. What’s more, applicants have to provide two references, both of whom are interviewed before they can get a gun.
“The math is simple—and bleak. In Obama’s budget, Social Security costs $787.6 billion; defense costs $928.5 billion; debt payments cost $250.7 billion. Together they total $1.967 trillion. If you remove that $1.967 trillion from the equation, as Lee suggests, you’re left with $1.863 trillion in spending to work with. At this point, balancing the budget—i.e., wringing $1.669 trillion in savings out of that last $1.863 trillion—would require slashing every government program that’s not defense or Social Security (Medicare, Medicaid, veterans affairs, education, and so on) by 89.6 percent. Tea Partiers eat it up when candidates like Lee say, “Let’s shrink government by 40 percent!” But this is what he’s actually proposing (even if he’s now hedging under pressure).”—
Check out Nobel.org’s interactive 20th century conflict map where little flames symbolize the death, destruction and misery that plagued so much of the world, especially the colonial and post-colonial world from 1900-2000.