WaPo from The Intercept. Say it ain't so!

Brian Sun, 2016-09-25 15:44
Elect Jill Stein (this article is not about her, but I didn't want a photo of Trump on my site.)

(Achtung! I despise Donald Trump. Maybe even more than you. I've despised him for many, many years, since long before he decided to run for POTUS. This is not a pro-Trump piece. I discuss here what I believe to be the actual situation.)

One of the more annoying talking points stinking up the debates around the US presidential election is this: Drumpf's son's "skittles" tweet was based on an analogy that "originated" in Nazi Germany. Even more embarrassing is that this talking point appears to have originated in The Intercept, a medium many of us count on to be reliably non-mainstream, non-purveyors of WaPo (BS).

Now it's absolutely true that the publisher of Der Stürmer in the 1930s, one Jules Streicher, really, really, really hated Jews, and he did publish a book that asserted a single Jew could poison an entire Volk, but you cannot conclude from that that the "one bad apple" meme was invented by Streicher. Myself, I suspect it's been with us humans for a very long time, since long before the Nazis decided genocide sounded like a pretty good idea. (n.b. The Nazis didn't invent genocide, either.)

And, in fact, the author of the Intercept piece, one Naomi LaChance, doesn't say the analogy originated with Streicher. She says: "The concept dates back to at least 1938 and [Streicher's] book." At least 1938, eh? This means, of course, that she doesn't know how far back it goes, and didn't bother to look. She just found an interesting comparison between something a Nazi did, and something Trump did, and ran with it. All's fair in the Dump Trump movement, eh?

Her argument boils down to this: A Nazi said something, and Trump said a similar thing; therefore Trump's a Nazi.

Well, how about this one? The Soviets built a wall, and Trump wants to build a wall. OMG! Trump's a Communist! (Or maybe a Zionist.)
Pretty flawed logic, eh?

For some reason The Intercept's headline for the LaChance article is, "Nazi who originated Donald Trump Jr's skittles analogy was hanged at Nuremberg," a headline that isn't an accurate reflection of the article. But that's what the tweeters tweet, and Facebookers post, and that's all the great majority of their followers and friends see. So hundreds of thousands of "peeps" (boy, do I hate that term!) out there will think the Trumps have done something it took a Nazi to make up.

Now don't get me wrong. There are all sorts of good reasons to think Drumpf has definite fascist leanings. The analogy just ain't one of them. What is says about refugees definitely is one of them.

In my opinion, if you're in a conversation about the latest police killing of an unarmed citizen, and your interlocutor says that cop is just a "bad apple," you ought to be able to say, "One bad apple spoils the bunch" without being called a Nazi.

My apologies. I'm a bit of an idealist. In the world I'd prefer to live in, public policy decisions would be made on facts, reason, good information, and concern for all, not on self-interest, emotions, WaPo, and a crazed desire to win at all costs.

When Glenn Greenwald et al announced the creation of The Intercept, it was terrific news (and still is). Our expectations are high, and one of those expectations is: No WaPo.

In this article, those expectations have been disappointed.


The offending statement. It's not the analogy that's fascist; it's what it says.