Fox News Is Losing the War On Analogies
Sean Hannity took to the Cablewaves to complain about the shocking, cruel, unkind analogy that Bob Schieffer used last week, where he outrageously compared one thing with other things, which is something that we as Americans should just not do. On a Jan. 16 CBS News special report on Newtown and guns, Schieffer discussed how hard it might be to enact meaningful changes in our gun laws, but noted that presidents have overcome difficult obstacles in the past:
“Surely finding Osama Bin Laden, surely passing civil rights legislation, as Lyndon Johnson was able to do, and before that, surely defeating the Nazis was a much more formidable task than taking on the gun lobby.”
Obviously, the only correct way to interpret these words is that Bob Schieffer thinks that gun owners and the NRA are radical muslim segregationist Nazis, because that's exactly what he said. Schieffer's over-the top statement was very alarming to Fox News, where Sean Hannity followed the Schieffer comment with a clip of Rush Limbaugh asking “Is there room for that in our discourse today?” Enjoy this lovely Talking Points Memo video which shows Fox News talking heads having very serious concerns about the state of our public discourse, where apparently some people mention Nazis now and again. Do we see conservatives invoking George Orwell? We do. Every time a conservative does that on TV they should be required to give $10 to the George Orwell Memorial Trust.
Mr. Hannity appears not to recall his own very articulate invocation of Hitler just last week:
“We don’t talk a lot about — what were the intentions of our founders and framers? And we have Stalin, um, we have Hitler, we have countries, tyrannical. They talked a lot about that.”
To be honest, we aren't really sure if he is actually calling anyone a Nazi there, because he is talking a lot about the thing, and the tyranny, as he must, because America.
We sort of wish Schieffer had said "If we can put a man on the moon, we can do this..." Because then Fox could go crazy about how the evil liberal media was calling the NRA an airless, lifeless environment with very little gravity.
And for our second Fox Analogy Fail, let us turn to a different facet of the Nazi Analogy, in which Obama is not Hitler so much as he is Neville Chamberlain, the spineless British Prime Minister who allowed Hitler to annex the Sudetenland, and who also had a pet toad named Trevor. Here are Jonah Goldberg, Charles Krauthammer, and John Bolton commenting on how Obama was "historically tone deaf...or ignorant" by using the phrase "Peace in our time" in his inaugural address, because it signals to Iran that they are free to bomb Israel:
Particularly amusing is Goldberg's suggestion that Obama's speechwriting staff "often make these weird historical errors, these easily-checked facts, that previous White House speechwriting shops would never make," since, as Media Matters notes, Ronald Reagan used those terrible appease-y words in a 1983 speech at an award presentation for the Peace Corps Awards:
I am very pleased to honor these six fine Americans who have volunteered their time, skills, and experience to the cause of peace.
Seldom are we able to point to one person's work and pronounce it not only good and worthwhile but also a step toward building peace in our time. And today, we enjoy that good fortune and we can measure it sixfold. We're honoring six Americans who have dedicated themselves to the cause of peace -- Americans who have traveled voluntarily to unfamiliar lands to help citizens of developing nations. [emphasis added]
But as we all know, some words are holy when said by the Good Americans, and are offensive and weak when said by the Kenyan Usurper. E Plebnista!