Monday, July 16, 2007

Why isn’t this news?

I found this article in the Telegraph (am I the only nerd here who reads foreign newspapers? I find the Telegraph and Le Monde fascinating): “Addressing a gathering of atheists in his home state of Minnesota, Keith Ellison, a Democrat, compared the 9/11 atrocities to the destruction of the Reichstag, the German parliament, in 1933. This was probably burned down by the Nazis in order to justify Hitler's later seizure of emergency powers.
"It's almost like the Reichstag fire, kind of reminds me of that," Mr. Ellison said. "After the Reichstag was burned, they blamed the Communists for it, and it put the leader [Hitler] of that country in a position where he could basically have authority to do whatever he wanted."


The thing I found most interesting about this story is that it wasn’t news in America- not even on Fox. Why was this story not considered newsworthy? I see several possibilities:
1. It happens so often that it’s no longer news when important elected Democratic officials compare Republicans to Nazis.
2. As Mr. Ellison is the first Muslim in Congress, he will never be criticized by mainstream media because they are afraid of being seen as judgmental or bigoted.
3. His remarks were seen by editors as so obvious and true as to not be controversial.

I’m not sure which explanation would be worse.

4 comments:

Chalicechick said...

1. No, I don't think a politician violating Godwin's Law when talking about the other party is newsworthy in and of itself.

2. This strikes me as not a comparison of Republicans to Nazis, but an indication that Ellison believes they are using similar tactics. To me, this seems different.

Though I do not agree the W is a facist, I do see a difference between:

1. W is as bad as Hitler.

2. W and facists have the following tactics in common:

CC

Joel Monka said...

The comparison would only be valid if Bush had ordered 9/11 himself (as the Nazis had set the Reichstag fire themselves), or knew full well that Al Queada had nothing to do with 9/11, and falsely blamed it on them to gain power. While it is true that some members of Congress have said that Bush did indeed order 9/11 himself, Mr. Ellison later said that he accepted that Bin Laden did it- which means he knew full well that his comparison was invalid when he said it.

Steve Caldwell said...

Joel,

One difference here is the Nazis were directly responsible for the terrorist attack that they exploited in their rise to power.

Unlike the Nazis, the GOP leadership exploited the opportunity that 9/11 provided them but they didn't cause the 9/11 attacks to happen.

But they did use the 9/11 attacks and lied about linkage between al-Quaeda and Iraq in order to start a way with Iraq.

Personally, I'm not surprised that The Telegraph covered this story with the "Bush like Hitler" headline. One would expect this sort of coverage from a conservative newspaper.

DJD said...

Joel-- I would go with the first two options. Dems trying to remove the balls of Republicans happens too often now. And the fact that he's a Muslim certainly gives him room to be an a-hole for political gain. He's safe and clear under the banner of "diversity" and "political correctness."