Saturday, January 26, 2008

Neiwert the Leftist intellectual lightweight

I have had a bit of fun with David Neiwert (aka "Orcinus") in the past (See here and here, for example) so I was interested to see what his attack on Jonah Goldberg was like. I didn't think Jonah had much to fear and I was right. Jonah has fisked him pretty thoroughly by now (See here and here, for example) so I will just note that Neiwert presents a wholly typical example of Leftist argument -- abuse followed by distortions so great that they can only be called completely dishonest.

Look at how Neiwert starts out his review of Jonah's book:
It might be tempting to throw Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left from Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning into those same cloacal backwaters, but there is an essential difference that goes well beyond the likely much broader reach of Goldberg's book, which was inexplicably published by a mainstream house (Doubleday). Most revisionists are actually historians with some credentials, and their theses often hinge on nuances and the interpretation of details.

Goldberg, who has no credentials beyond the right-wing nepotism that has enabled his career as a pundit, has drawn a kind of history in absurdly broad and comically wrongheaded strokes. It is not just history done badly, or mere revisionism. It's a caricature of reality, like something from a comic-book alternative universe: Bizarro history. The title alone is enough to indicate its thoroughgoing incoherence

It's just ad hominem abuse. No discussion of the facts, no reasoned argument. And it doesn't get much better further on. And what Neiwert in various places refers to as "false assumptions" are usually points which -- as Jonah has noted -- are fully documented in the book and are, as such, no assumptions at all. But Neiwert has apparently not read the documentation concerned. Criticizing what they have not read is a form of arrogance one often gets from Leftists -- as Charles Murray found. Perhaps Neiwert hopes that he will simply bluff us by his vocabulary: "cloaca" is the Latin word for a drain or a sewer.

Neiwert fancies himself as some sort of expert on Fascism and it was on that subject that I have shown his absurdity before. But he has learnt nothing. See his article on Fascism here. Its ignorance is literally staggering to anyone who knows the first thing about American political history. At the top of his page he has pictures of Rush Limbaugh and Father Coughlin, followed by the explanation: "Right wing political propagandists then and now: Father Coughlin, left, and Rush Limbaugh".

Coughlin was Right-wing??? Coughlin was a great fan of that hero of the American Left: FDR. Neiwert does know that much but goes on to say that Coughlin fell out with FDR. But he does not say WHY Coughlin went sour on FDR: Because FDR was not Leftist enough for him! Neiwert obviously has not a blind clue what he is talking about. I suspect that he just saw the title "Father" and assumed from that that Coughlin MUST have been a conservative Catholic of some sort. In fact, of course the church disapproved greatly of Coughlin's writings and broadcasts -- so much so that his bishop eventually shut him up and told him to return to normal pastoral duties.

I don't think I need to say much more. There are none so blind as those who will not see. Neiwert just cannot face the fact that the two great tyrannies of the 20th century -- Communism and Fascism -- were both Leftist: Different flavours of Leftism but thoroughly Leftist all the same. The fact that they eventually fought one-another should surprise no-one. Have you noticed much love between Hillary and Obama?

In fact, with his constant inspirational calls for national unity, Obama is eerily reminiscent of the Fascists. If he spoke German he might well be inclined to adopt as his slogan Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Fuehrer -- as Hitler did ("One nation, one government, one leader"). After all, right to the end most Germans saw Hitler as a warm and kindly father-figure. And if the ruthless power-seeker that is Hillary reminds you of Joe Stalin, don't blame me!

Put very briefly, the Fascists were (following Hegel) the "one big happy family" Left while the Communists were the deeply embittered "class war" Left. Hitler only hated the Jews. Marx, Trotksy, Lenin and Stalin hated just about everybody -- Marx particularly so. You can readily see why the two types of Leftist despised one-another.

I wonder does Neiwert know that Karl Marx himself was a virulent antisemite? If antisemitism makes Hitler a Rightist, then the author of the Communist Manifesto was also a Rightist! LOL! I think that thought might even explode Neiwert's tiny brain.

If you can't afford Jonah's book, there are three of my heavily-documented accounts of the Leftist origins of Fascism here and here and here. I would love it if Neiwert tried to debunk any of those articles. Why should Jonah have all the fun?

But, judging from his attack on Jonah, Neiwert might be struck dumb in trying to attack me. Neiwert seemed to think he had made a great point by saying that Jonah lacked academic credentials. He would have great difficulty in saying that about me. It shows how stupid credentialism is. In the end it is only the facts that count.



Saddam's miscalculation (something for the Ayatollahs to think about?): "Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein kept up the illusion that he had weapons of mass destruction before 2003 because he did not think the United States would invade, an FBI agent who questioned him said. In an interview with CBS's 60 Minutes to be broadcast on Sunday, FBI agent George Piro describes conversations with Saddam in the months after his capture in December 2003. Piro said Saddam, who was hanged for crimes against humanity in December 2006, wanted to maintain the image of a strong Iraq to deter Iran, its historic enemy, from hostile action. "He told me he initially miscalculated ... President (George W) Bush's intentions. He thought the United States would retaliate with the same type of attack as we did in 1998 ... a four-day aerial attack," Piro said. "He survived that one and he was willing to accept that type of attack," Piro said"

Hillary and Say's Law: "But this stimulus shouldn't be paid for," Hillary Clinton said to Tim Russert in a recent interview, when he reminded her that she'd omitted a price tag somewhere. Shouldn't be? Say hello to that old ghost from the past we thought banished by Ronald Reagan in the 1980s. It's called "Keynesian Economics." Ironically, even the brilliant John Maynard Keynes disowned it. Economics has certain iron laws that the government violates at its peril. One of them has been called Say's Law, because it was first enunciated by the late 18th-century Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Say. He said "products are paid for with products." Or to rephrase the point, "a society can't consume if it doesn't produce." Hillary's assertion that her "stimulus" package shouldn't be paid for denies reality. Somebody has to pay for it. One man's consumption must be paid for by his own or someone else's production."

Britain unveils sweeping new terrorism law proposals: "The British government has unveiled sweeping plans to toughen terrorism laws, including a proposal to hold suspects for up to 42 days without charge. Home Secretary Jacqui Smith's plan would increase the limit for detaining suspects without charge from 28 days to 42 days, allow police to take DNA samples from terrorism suspects and urge judges to impose stiffer sentences on criminals whose offences are linked to terrorism. Proposals to increase the maximum time terrorism suspects can be held by police are opposed by human rights groups as well MPs within Prime Minister Gordon Brown's Labour party, guaranteeing a vicious fight in Parliament. Smith said in an interview on BBC radio that the detention period has to be extended because the severity of the terrorist threat has often forced police to act before they had all the evidence needed for a conviction. "It's growing in scale. It's becoming more complicated in nature," she said. "People need to intervene earlier because of the way in which it aims to cause mass casualties with no warning."

U.S. supplies Soviet aircraft to Afghans!: "Calling it the 'birth of our air force,' Afghan President Hamid Karzai opened a new $22 million U.S.-funded military hangar on Thursday to house a fleet that is expected to triple in the next three years. Standing in the cavernous hangar opposite Kabul's international airport, Karzai thanked the U.S. for helping to buy six refurbished Mi-17 transport helicopters and six refurbished Mi-35 helicopter gunships from the Czech Republic, as well as four An-32 transport planes from Ukraine." [Cheaper, I guess]


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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".


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