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Tilting at Windmills

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July 29, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

SCIENCE....Yesterday I was scratching my chin over the accusation that a "new eugenics" had begun to rear its ugly head among modern progressives. Where had that come from, I wondered. Today, via Matt, I see that Rick Perlstein has shed some light on this question. Here's Glenn Beck at the end of a weird rant about the monstrousness of Al Gore's fight against global warming:

Then [i.e., in the 20s and 30s] you get the scientists — eugenics. You get the scientists — global warming. Then you have to discredit the scientists who say, 'That's not right.' And you must silence all dissenting voices. That's what Hitler did.

So that's the deal. A few old-time progressives touted eugenics as a "scientific" approach to improving human nature back in the early 20th century, and modern-day progressives tout "science" as evidence that global warming is real in the early 21st century. Our reliance on science, then, basically means that we're pining away for the days of legalized racism. Gotcha.

Now, here's the thing: Glenn Beck, Yuval Levin, and Ross Douthat didn't come up with this stuff themselves. But it didn't just pop up out of nowhere either. It's way too abstruse for that. Rather, some bright boy or girl in the conservative movement dreamed this up and now it's being run up the flagpole to see if anyone salutes. If it gets some attention, it'll be rolled out to a wider audience.

So whose bright idea was this? Is there a proud parent out there who wants to take credit?

UPDATE: By the way, I should note that this new meme apparently replaces the old meme, namely that liberals aren't any more dedicated to science than conservatives, they just have different blind spots. Oddly, one of the pieces of evidence for the old meme was liberal antipathy toward evolutionary psychology (aka sociobiology) and our concomitant unwillingness to accept the vast scientific evidence showing that IQ is primarily controlled by genetics. In other words, our supposedly irrational anti-eugenics stand.

Well, whatever. Consistency has never been a strong point among movement conservatives. If X doesn't work, try not-X!

UPDATE 2: Ah. A friend emails to say that Jonah Goldberg's new book, Liberal Fascism, links progressivism and eugenics. Of course it does. And various folks are probably just starting to get their advance reading copies. So this will soon be the topic du jour in conservative circles.

My heart leaps with joy at the thought.

Kevin Drum 1:01 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (90)

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[banned commenter, content deleted]

Posted by: Al [American Hawk] on July 29, 2007 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

It came from a think tank. Probably the Heritage Foundation where some sell-out historians work. When they aren't counter-blogging to insult our intellect, they Google search terminology of significance to thinking people to demonize, distort and defame (Triple-D logic, no?). You'll note that a few of the trolls here trotted out the "progressive" connection to Eugenics within minutes of your first post. No coincidence. Also completely irrelevant. I think the Know-Nothings in the GOP would realize how specious such an argument would be.
Note:
Impeach! That vote caging scandal and NSA data mining stuff is "fixing" to explode.

Posted by: Sparko on July 29, 2007 at 1:10 PM | PERMALINK

"Conservative" no longer means anything - these guys are Reactionaries, and the old times they pine for are the Middle Ages.

Just like the radical mullahs, strangely.

Posted by: craigie on July 29, 2007 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK

I was going to point out that the eugenics meme comes from wingnuts like Al, but Al beat me to it.

Posted by: dr on July 29, 2007 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK

I don't know which bothers me more, the virus of conniving lies or the Petri dish of gullible populace in which the virus thrives.

Posted by: Independent on July 29, 2007 at 1:12 PM | PERMALINK

Al proves the point in record time!

Incidentally, didn't DeLay mention an embryo army to do menial labor instead of illegals? Of course he did.

The social engineering and Viagra laced delusions of the Republican party seem much more eugenics-driven than progressive support for individual choice. . .

Posted by: Sparko on July 29, 2007 at 1:13 PM | PERMALINK

Two stories this weekend presented different faces on the unwavering - and perhaps criminal - zeal of the Bush White House to acquire and maintain power. On Friday, PBS Now reported how a massive Republican "vote caging" scheme drove targeted minority (read Democratic) voters in key 2004 battleground states. And today, the Washington Post revealed that Bush HHS appointee William R. Steiger blocked the release of Surgeon General Richard Carmona's 2006 global health report for purely political reasons.

For the details, see:
"Suppressing Votes - and Science."

Posted by: Angry on July 29, 2007 at 1:16 PM | PERMALINK


Let me be the first to suggest this has a decent chance of backfiring on the conservatives.

Consider their message (progressive believe in eugenics). Now consider their base (middle Americans who are more xenophobic and racist than blue metropolitan folks). The 1920s Social Darwinism/White Man's Burden schtick is actually echoed (however subtly) in the rhetoric of the Republican party, the "Hollywood liberals" (read: Jews), the homophobia, the backlash over immigration (too many brown people), opposition to affirmative action (African-Americans), religion in schools and government (Christians against the godless heathens of the world), the leadership roles in the Republican party played by racist Southerners, etc.

Hate to say it, but if the Conservatives start saying that the progressives have sympathy for old school eugenics you risk confusing and peeling away some of your own base.

And let me get this straight, Conservatives are decrying silencing of scientists and equating that with Hitler? Let's hope they keep repeating that line as much as possible, because the only group around that has been silencing scientists has been Conservative Republicans.

Of course, never underestimate the absolutely mindless stupidity of the Republican flock to believe anything they're told, even if it contradicts what THEY KNOW to be true. (Thanks, religion!)

Posted by: Augustus on July 29, 2007 at 1:30 PM | PERMALINK

Shorter Al: "Guns don't kill people, pregnant mothers do."

I want to start my own meme: if we kill everyone at the Heritage Foundation, AT THE SAME TIME as we fund solar energy, it will INCREASE economic growth.

Posted by: Lee A. Arnold on July 29, 2007 at 1:34 PM | PERMALINK

Al,

Shut. The. Fuck. Up. You boot-licking toadie.

Go suck somewhere else.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C.) on July 29, 2007 at 1:39 PM | PERMALINK

damn those scientists! first scientists, now vaccines! can't have it!

Posted by: supersaurus on July 29, 2007 at 1:40 PM | PERMALINK

One thing to remember when hearing "eugenics" thrown around is that there were in fact two competing eugenics movements around the turn of the twentieth century.

One was a basic betterment of the human race movement, which began in the 1890s and was very much a public health movement. It encouraged proper nutrition (Kellogg was a big sponsor), exercise, nature walks, and not having more children than one could properly raise and educate.

This, of course, engendered a countermovement within that advocated speeding up the process by weeding out defectives and degenerates. Hitler and the Nazis got their eugenics ideas from the US.

Not at home, so I don't have the details on hand, but if you are interested in this try to track down old copies of PHYSICAL CULTURE magazine.

Posted by: m on July 29, 2007 at 1:43 PM | PERMALINK

The "good old" eugenics was also promoted, quite actively, by many Christian groups, sermons from the pulpit, and such non-progressives as anti-Semetic (and certified Hitler-lover) Thomas Edison.

Once again the simplistic "history" emanating from the rightwing is, shall we say, "incomplete".

Posted by: QrazyQat on July 29, 2007 at 1:43 PM | PERMALINK

Possible root of this nutbar claim:

In "Big Coal," Jeff Goodell said global warming skeptic Arthur Robinson first made this claim in 1998.

Posted by: SocraticGadfly on July 29, 2007 at 1:44 PM | PERMALINK

The "new eugenics" line has been SOP of the "Intelligent Design" group the Discovery Institute for years now.

Posted by: Tom Ames on July 29, 2007 at 1:53 PM | PERMALINK

Well first off, there is a big difference between the biological sciences and the natural sciences. Somehow I sense that the hydrocarbon lobby has deep pockets for the idiots that pass as pundits on cable "news shows". It is just more infotainment payola.
------
"Incidentally, didn't DeLay mention an embryo army to do menial labor instead of illegals? Of course he did."
Posted by: Sparko on July 29, 2007 at 1:13 PM
------
I'm quite sure people like DeLay and most of the GOP would be quite happy to fund a genetically engineered "workforce" of compliant non-complaining slaves that are perfect matches to their specialized duties. They could all live in one-room apartments and be designed to abruptly die at say 40 years of age so we could save on health care costs. Imagine the prosperity!

Posted by: Doc at the Radar Station on July 29, 2007 at 1:58 PM | PERMALINK

Painting eugenics as a foundation of "scientific materialism" has been used most recently to discredit evolutionary biology. It's been used most heavily by the Intelligent Design crowd and is heavily promoted by the the Discovery Institute, a conservative think tank based in Seattle.

The most recent example of this comes from Richard Weikart, a fellow of the Discovery Institute and author of "From Darwin to Hitler, Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics and Racism in Germany."

There are two angles to using the eugenics club to bash evolution. First, IDists claims that evolution was used as the basis for eugenics, and since we know eugenics is wrong and evil, then evolution is wrong and evil as well. Eugenics was scientific materialism without any inhibitions. But given that eugenics was found to be wrong and evil, we shouldn't trust scientific materialism to guide decision-making in society. Instead, we should base our society on theology. See "the wedge document", an internal Discovery Institute memo that was leaked to public that spells out their strategy for making this happen.

Second, IDists assert since eugenics was *THE* consensus of the scientific establishment of the time, why should we trust scientists today when they say that basically of science accepts evolution as fact?

The Discovery Institute people have a long history of tying evolution and Darwin to eugenics and Hitler, yet they adopted it from the young-earth creationists (as basically all of their arguments are just retooled young-earth creationist arguments). See this page for an example:

http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v27/i2/hitler.asp

As an aside, there is a whole world of crazy that most Americans are completely oblivious to. The Answers in Genesis people are helping lead the charge.

Posted by: CKT on July 29, 2007 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

As other commenters have suggested, it doesn't really matter where the meme got started since the right will say anything. It hardly has to be logical or consistent. As always, repetition is the key. This does point out the structural advantages the right has when making spurious arguments. One obvious advantage is the size and range of their media. Another is a bit more subtle since it feeds off the resentment of elites (i.e., scientists, academics, "experts"). The power lies in conflating some evil with an elite position. Once the listerner/reader sees the association, an "aha" moment follows that validates the pre-existing resentment.

We all scratch our heads when the right will seemingly spin on a dime and make opposite claims but the clue here is to keep demonizing the amorphous left as a sinister conspiracy of elitists. The left will do this as well but tends to be a bit more consistent in their choice of devils (e.g., corporatists, industrial complexes, plutocrats).

Posted by: walt on July 29, 2007 at 2:04 PM | PERMALINK

Reading the Douthat and Levin pieces gave me the same feeling: that some think tank (Heritage) poll tested adjectives associated with the old line progressive movement and "eugenics" tested the most negative. How they then got these toadies to trot it out is of considerable interest. In the end though is anyone really going to associate the current Democratic candidates with a movement from the turn of the 20th century? They would be better off trying their other favorite chesnut linking them to the old South Dems who opposed the civil rights movement. At least that occurred within the last 50 years. All in all it sounds like desperation to me.

Posted by: Col Bat Guano on July 29, 2007 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK


The main notion here is to discount the significance of scientific consensus, so as to keep the few (usually non-specialist) skeptics on the same epistemological level as the vast majority of scientists.

Thanks to Wikipedia, I just found a 1995 paper drawing the analogy btw Global Warming and Eugenics.

http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/180_Eugenics.pdf


Apparently Michael Crichton has endorsed the analogy as well.

I agree there is some catalyst for the current interest by the rightist pundits on this. Not sure what, though.


Posted by: Stygius on July 29, 2007 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

Ah, Kevin.

Sneering Kevin Drum. Always sneering at regular people. People who have to go to work in the morning. People who have kids to support. People trying to make ends meet. People who love G_d and go to church and want to publicly embrace G_d and resent the multiculturalist liberal propaganda being shoved down their throats and the government trying to steal their guns from them.

Now it's global warming. The global warmers are now on a drive to discredit the non-scientists, those that don't buy into the propaganda. Just like Hitler did.

Posted by: egbert on July 29, 2007 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK

As the first comment to this thread would kind of imply, I was under the distinct impression that this "new eugenics" stuff refers to abortion, or more accurately, the wierd complex of rumors that surround abortion in the minds of the far right wing. Rumors like "Democrats want to fund abortion clinics so they can kill babies to harvest and sell stem cells" (I had my father assert this to me as fact, and had to go to the NIH website on stem cell research to find a flat denial; fortunately he's not so far gone that he believes the NIH is "part of the conspiracy" or some such.) Anyway, a couple of links explicitly making the abortion-eugenics connection, ranging from "nut" to "column in the Washington Post":

http://www-swiss.ai.mit.edu/~rauch/nvp/eugenics.html
http://www.abortionfacts.com/learn/history_of_blacks_and_abortion.asp
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A51671-2005Apr13.html

"The new eugenics" is in fact "the new attack on the right to choice."

Posted by: NK on July 29, 2007 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

[IP check reveals banned commenter]

Posted by: Liberal_Smasher on July 29, 2007 at 2:36 PM | PERMALINK

Yep, Michael Crichton makes the comparison in an appendix of "State of Fear." I've had wingers point me to it before.

Posted by: balisardo on July 29, 2007 at 2:44 PM | PERMALINK

Yep, Michael Crichton makes the comparison in an appendix of "State of Fear." I've had wingers point me to it before.

Posted by: balisardo on July 29, 2007 at 2:44 PM | PERMALINK


Bad mutations occur frequently and are only gradually purged by selection. Dominant lethals disappear in the generation they occur, but those that cause smaller problems can linger for a long time.. A mutation that reduced fitness by 10% takes ten generations to disappear (on average), one that reduces fitness by 1% takes 100 generations. So everyone has a number of subpar genes, mostly only moderate impaired.
Of course some people have more than others: the distribution is (probably) roughly Poissonian.

However, the impact of carrying many such mildly subpar genes (genetic load) is thought to be large. If we learn how to alter genes efficiently and safely, we could fix every one of them and largely eliminate genetic load. Think of it as running a spellchecker on the genome.

Theory suggests that someone with a spellchecked genome would not have any qualitatively new capabilities (so would not be a candidate for the Fantastic Four) but would be, shall we say, formidable.

Posted by: gcochran on July 29, 2007 at 2:45 PM | PERMALINK

I agree with Augustus that this meme has little chance for survival. The wingnuts tried something like this before recently when they started labeling progressives fighting against the neocons as "anti-semites". This only served to inform the wingnut's base, ie, the real anti-semites, that many of the neocons were Jewish, and helped peal away support for their agenda.

Posted by: Disputo on July 29, 2007 at 2:46 PM | PERMALINK

As with a lot of stuff in the Republican noise machine, this one's been around a while and is just getting pulled out for a new audience.

Back in 1995, Scott Lively of the Oregon Citizens Alliance (Oregon's resident theocratic homophobes) co-wrote a book charging that the Nazi hierarchy was full of gays and hadn't persecuted them at all. There's commentary and links to more at this collection of books and articles about the Nazi treatment of homosexuals. I was active in Oregon BBSing at the time and vividly remember the arguments about it with right-wingers all too ready to believe that queer activists had manufactured a whole campaign of extermination to win the sympathy of credulous Jews and liberals.

The association of Nazis with anything that might conceivably be seen as liberal or progressive is just part of the arsenal for those who actually do have historical ties to the Nazis and shared points of philosophy and policy.

Posted by: Bruce Baugh on July 29, 2007 at 2:50 PM | PERMALINK

The problem with picking and choosing which alleles reduce fitness and which don't is that 1) it varies wrt environment (duh), and 2) many if not most genes have multiple phenotypic effects and so you quickly get into the the problem of having to weigh effects against each other.

Posted by: Disputo on July 29, 2007 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK

I second CKT's comment. Let me also add that this conflation of progressivism with eugenics isn't all that new; I would trace it back at least as early as C.S. Lewis, with his book The Abolition of Man, and his novel based on the same themes That Hideous Strength. Both books posited that modernity's rejection of natural law (and with it, divine law would lead to the phenomenon of "men without chests," i.e., people without a moral sense that connected their head, or intellect, with their gut, or instinct; these people would thus be easily seduced by totalitarian leaders of the sort that were rampaging across Europe at the time Lewis wrote the books (during WWII) and who also happened to believe in eugenics.

The progressive-eugenics-Nazi link is actually more explicit in the work of Southern novelist Walker Percy: His last novel, The Thanatos Syndrome, all but says that godless liberals are going to genetically engineer the 'perfect' society, abort babies and engage in pedophilia with abandon, and start killing Jews to boot. A shame, because Percy's first novel, The Moviegoer, was actually quite good.

What does this have to do Glenn Beck and global warming? Probably not much. But for all its daftness, this line of argument does have an intellectual pedigree, of sorts.

Posted by: Isaac on July 29, 2007 at 3:05 PM | PERMALINK

Let me also throw in Leon Kass and the Council on Bioethics crowd: This speech makes the comparison explicitly.

Posted by: Isaac on July 29, 2007 at 3:09 PM | PERMALINK


It's not that hard to do. Sure, there are moderately common alleles that are double-edged swords, good in one environment and bad in others, like sickle-cell, but in most cases frequency itself tells you what works. Almost every rare mutation is rare for a reason: only one in a million is an improvement. Things like autism, retardation, schizophrenia, all are caused to a large extent by many different mutations, each rare. Not only that, genetic load has to be a major influence on what we think of as the 'normal range' of variation:
there's reason to think people with lower-than-average genetic load are healthier, smarter, saner, etc.

Nobody's going to be screwed up if we substitute the wild-type allele for one that only he has.

There are other approaches, but this is the simplest and probably the most powerful.
Zero-defects: think like Toyota, not GM

Posted by: gcochran on July 29, 2007 at 3:12 PM | PERMALINK

I should have been more explicit. The environment changes in unexpected ways. The uncommon bad allele you weed out to today may be the species-saving allele of tomorrow. There is a reason that less-fit alleles stay in populations a long time. It is not a bug -- it is a feature. Evolution is not about maximizing the static fitness of individuals -- it is about maximizing the dynamic fitness of populations.

Posted by: Disputo on July 29, 2007 at 3:22 PM | PERMALINK

I must admit that the conservative oppposition to the theory of evolution, etc. confirms what Kevin said: conservatives are more anti-science than liberals are.

Posted by: ex-liberal on July 29, 2007 at 3:44 PM | PERMALINK

In Steven Jay Gould's essay rebutting the basis of (arguably progressive) Oliver Wendell Holmes' repulsive Supreme Court decision containing the horrible (and inapplicable to the case at hand) phrase "Three generations of idiots is enough," Gould makes the point that the Virginia (and I would assume other) sterilization statutes were promoted by a coalition that included the scientifically enlightened, the wealthy, the fashionable, and the racist, and opposed largely by conservative church Christian groups -- I'm not sure just who constituted Conservative Christians in 20's Virginia, but I think the point is valid. And the further point that we ought to be cautious in our judgments and aware of the complexities of history is even more valid.

Posted by: Gene O'Grady on July 29, 2007 at 4:01 PM | PERMALINK

scrambled egbert,

Shut. The. Fuck. Up. You boot-licking toadie.

Go suck somewhere else.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C.) on July 29, 2007 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

Actually Charles Darwin was interested in eugenics. His family was so inbred that many members were sickly and few were able to produce children.

Posted by: MonkeyBoy on July 29, 2007 at 4:58 PM | PERMALINK

Republicans crying about eugenics is one of their more amazing hypocrite moments. They are the only ones even remotely into this old, discredited nonsense. In fact, you can find a lot of eugenics at some Republican racist sites.

Posted by: Mike on July 29, 2007 at 5:04 PM | PERMALINK

Liberal_Smasher:

The GWB religion brigades are trying to destroy America. We can't let them get away with it.

Fixed your typo.

Posted by: pbg on July 29, 2007 at 5:22 PM | PERMALINK

Al Gore as the Hitler theme appears to me to be brainchild of Michael Savage, who, at times, is more like a successful parody troll than someone talking about sincerely held personal beliefs.

Posted by: gregor on July 29, 2007 at 5:31 PM | PERMALINK

Why doesn't Blue Girl get censored? I had comments removed from this site that were not remotely as offensive as hers.

Posted by: doc on July 29, 2007 at 5:38 PM | PERMALINK

With the Repukeliscum, it's Lysenkoism all the way. Lysenko was Stalin's pet hereditist. He believed that acquired traits could be inherited (blacksmith's son is more heavily muscled). This is clearly a nutty idea, but there are some things in life that might support the idea (athlete's children doing well athletically).

That's what we need to discuss - the insanity and stupidity of most conservaboobs.

Posted by: POed Lib on July 29, 2007 at 5:40 PM | PERMALINK

It's definently time to reinforce the truth about the connections between conservatives and fascism. Hitler was a conservative. He believed in strength like Bush. He believed in killing others like Tom Tancredo. He believed in attacking the judges and the courts like Jim Dobson.

Hitler was supported by most of the Repukeliscum of his day.

Posted by: POed Lib on July 29, 2007 at 5:43 PM | PERMALINK

BGRS is doing the mod's work by going after trolls.

Posted by: Disputo on July 29, 2007 at 5:44 PM | PERMALINK

I got moderated the time I suggested we part egbert out like a dead Chevy.

And doc, I really don't give a fuck about your feelings, either. Especially if you carry water for these fascists.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C.) on July 29, 2007 at 5:53 PM | PERMALINK

Oh good lord. I'm arguing with the jackass that thinks the Social Contract is reliant on a belief in god. I remember you.

Never mind. You huff and puff and be offended and puzzle over the temperature of planetary cores and remain convinced that an external locus of control is necessary for ethical behavior.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C.) on July 29, 2007 at 6:04 PM | PERMALINK

doc wrote: "Why doesn't Blue Girl get censored? I had comments removed from this site that were not remotely as offensive as hers."

I had comments deleted from this site that were one hunded percent factual, which contained only quotes from and links to articles that I was citing in support of a substantive argument, which contained nothing whatever "offensive" -- while other comments that I had posted on the very same thread which contained nothing but insults and invective aimed at another commenter were not deleted.

When I emailed Kevin to ask him about this, he replied by quoting my offensive comment and indicated that it was the reason that my inoffensive, factual comment was deleted (even though the offensive comment was not deleted).

That was when I decided that Kevin's criteria for deleting comments (i.e. when he is "sufficiently annoyed" by whatever) were arbitrary, capricious and stupid, and stopped posting comments here.


Posted by: SecularAnimist on July 29, 2007 at 6:05 PM | PERMALINK

Golly, some of you folks are just hothouse flowers, aren't you?

Remember this -- the core of the eugenics argument is that genetics rules.

Which political movement harbors Charles Murray's notions of intelligence?

If THIS is what they want to run with, well: bring it on.

Posted by: theAmericanist on July 29, 2007 at 6:54 PM | PERMALINK

Standard operating procedure. If you are a liar accuse your opponent of being a liar. If you are a coward accuse your opponent of being a coward. And if you are a Republican call Democrats Nazis.

Posted by: Ross Best on July 29, 2007 at 7:32 PM | PERMALINK

For a middle class country it does seem a little strange that both major political parties seem to have a certain feckless (and as of late reckless) contempt for the American middle class, and although I am something of a leftist myself I object to paying absurd taxes for any ideologically left-wing project (let alone favored group of the Democratic patronage machine), and am more than vaguely inclined to think that global warming is as much an opportunity for liberal and leftist activists to draw blood from the suburbs and consumerism and car culture as the so-called war on terror is an opportunity for the right to put their anti-liberty principles into practice.

And in case it needs to be said only morons resort to Hitler analogies; their arguments don't need to be dignified.

Posted by: Linus on July 29, 2007 at 9:09 PM | PERMALINK

You huff and puff and be offended and puzzle over the temperature of planetary cores and remain convinced that an external locus of control is necessary for ethical behavior.

While I agree with the sentiment, I must add that I am quite glad that religions exist for those who *believe* that external loci of control are necessary for people (read: themselves) to behave ethically (or a reasonable facsimile thereof).

Not of course that it always or even usually works since many (if not most) people simply use religion to justify their a priori unethical behavior, but I have personally seen cases where previously a-ethical people after "finding religion" became better people in deed (if not internally) because they took seriously the question "WWJD?"

Posted by: Disputo on July 29, 2007 at 9:50 PM | PERMALINK

Linking eugenics, 'moral relativism' & progressives has actually been a long-running leitmotif in the execrable fiction of the monstrously prolific, bestselling author Dean Koontz.

(My only excuse for occaisionally reading his ridiculous books is being stuck, bookless & bored, in obscure Asian airports where his overwrought dreck has been the only English fiction for sale. I've now taken up Suduko instead.)

Posted by: DanJoaquinOz on July 29, 2007 at 10:09 PM | PERMALINK

As much as conservatives may wish to link a "liberal" scientific resistance to socio-biology, it just isn't empirically feasible. The fact is that many of the supporters of evolutionary psychology are even more liberal (often libertarian though) than the conservatives would wish.

I'm liberal and side with the Gould camp that social evolution is a distinct process in contrast to biological evolution. On the other hand, my closest psycho-biology supporting colleague is a commune-living, nudist, porno industry insider type. So what the hell does that say?

Posted by: cthulhu on July 29, 2007 at 10:24 PM | PERMALINK

NK is right: the eugenics connection up to now has usually been through abortion/contraception. Much is made of the fact that, like many progressives of her era, Margaret Sanger espoused eugenic notions, or at least was willing to apply them to argue for reproductive choice. In this she was considerably more benign than the eugenicists who were arguing for forced sterilizations, but the line from the Family Research Council and the like is that this stains modern reproductive-rights activists with eugenics and racism.

Posted by: Matt McIrvin on July 29, 2007 at 10:38 PM | PERMALINK

Another line (maybe its a meme)I hear coming from the right-wing noise machine about the Gonzales affair, is this phrase about "conservatives are the only ones who can be convicted without proof", which is laughably ironic after ten years of unproven accusations against Bill and Hillary Clinton.

My barber, who is an ignorant asshole, tried the line on me on Saturday. I only continue to go to him because he gives good haircuts.

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on July 29, 2007 at 11:07 PM | PERMALINK

Looks like the moonbats are twittering and squeaking tonight about Glenn Beck. Common sense and a good dose of thorazine can bring y'all back down from your visionary excesses about AGW. Richard Feynman used to call bogus frauds like Al Gore guilty of "Cargo Cult Science." Google it and double your educaton level on the scientific method and intellectual honesty.

Posted by: daveinboca on July 30, 2007 at 12:17 AM | PERMALINK

Except that Feynman was referring to supposed scientific phenomena that lacked observable evidential backing. Global warming has plenty of evidence if one bothers to read up on it. Real papers, mind you, not Newsweek. I only respond out of disgust that you would abuse Professor Feynman's name for the sake of cloaking your idealogical objections in the garb of scientific objections.

Posted by: greg on July 30, 2007 at 12:36 AM | PERMALINK

Jonah Goldberg is an idiot. A lot of people said things about eugenics back then. It just reflects the burgeoning interest back then in a growing realization of the role heredity plays in our fates. It was just the analog to today's interest in modern genetics. You can't attribute every asshole or specious thing anybody ever said to modern liberals.

I'd just like to note that there are plenty of conservatives (not necesarily all the same ones who are bashing us over this, but probably some of them) who are actually (as Kevin points out- remember The Bell Curve?) very interested in eugenics themselves, and look to thinkers such as Plato (who overtly advocated eugenics) for support for their beliefs, and look to Sparta (where eugenics was actually put into practice) as their model of what they appreciate in the ancient world rather than Athens (actually the stronger nation, in fact). Notice that conservatives reference Plato a lot? Guys like me appreciate Plato and Aristotle and some of the other thinkers conservatives like, too- we just like different parts (i.e., not the wacko parts that have been consigned to the dustbin of history).

Posted by: Swan on July 30, 2007 at 12:37 AM | PERMALINK

The "good old" eugenics was also promoted, quite actively, by many Christian groups, sermons from the pulpit, and such non-progressives as anti-Semetic (and certified Hitler-lover) Thomas Edison.

Even Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., supported state sterilization of developmentally disabled persons. People didn't know much science back then- it was a different time, there were still deformed people exhibited as freaks in carnivals. People hadn't even started thinking up ways to care for these people- much less started alloting the funds to build facilities to care for them. Mental retardation was a much more hopeless and much less understood plight. Perhaps the kind of eugenicists the conservatives are referring to are best described as a benign wing of those who believed in eugenics, relative to others who believed in eugenics, even though we can see- by benefit of the advanced modern knowledge we have, our 20/20 hindsight- that eugenics as a whole, as an absolute concept wasn't really a benign idea.

Posted by: Swan on July 30, 2007 at 12:54 AM | PERMALINK

Why doesn't Blue Girl get censored? I had comments removed from this site that were not remotely as offensive as hers.

I don't know BG, and I'm not going to vouch for any of her stuff, and it seems really conspicuous that she could be doing something better with her time than writing to Al and Egbert to shut the f*** up in front of all of us over and over again- it's really unnecessary and too much- but I don't think the substance of what she's writing there is that offensive. These guys are jerks and that's why they get talked to that way and what they represent is appalling. It's appropriate they get taken down a notch in some way or form. I'm glad to see Kevin is being a smarty about deleting some of these comments now, and I think that's a better way to handle it (if a blogger can take the time to do that) than what Blue Girl is doing.

Posted by: Swan on July 30, 2007 at 1:02 AM | PERMALINK

"Liberal Fascism"???

I'll have to add that to my list of double-think oxymorons deliberately concocted by the NeoConNazis as would-be "smokescreens". (You know, like "compssionate Conservatives".) ;-)

I think we ALL know who the devoted Fascists are in this country. They caucus primarily with "God's Only Party".

If tolerance and open-mindedness -- the essence of liberalism -- are so easily conflused with "Fascism" by ideological half-wits like Goldberg, then perhaps Freedom really IS slavery to them, eh?

You did say "Jonah Goldberg", not "Emmanuel Goldstein", right??

Posted by: Poilu on July 30, 2007 at 1:50 AM | PERMALINK

"compssionate Conservatives" ["compassionate", of course].

Damn, somebody stole my "a" AGAIN!!

"DON'T NOBODY MOVE!!!" ;-)

Posted by: Poilu on July 30, 2007 at 1:56 AM | PERMALINK

"You'll note that a few of the trolls here trotted out the "progressive" connection to Eugenics within minutes of your first post."

Sparko: Strangely, I also noticed that none of those dimwit parrots ever trotted out the crucial obvservation that some of the most prominent Progressives in American history (like isolatioist Senator Robert "Fighting Bob" LaFollette) were nominally REPUBLICANS.

Funny how annoying little details like that rarely make it into such right-wing diatribes. (Then, of course, there was the bozo who labeled Eugene Debs, the five-time SOCIALIST Party candidate for President a "Progressive"!)

And you know, I just don't remember Presidential candidate John Anderson (formerly a Republican) EVER bringing up the topic of Eugenics during his 1980 campaign as the Progressive contender. (Though he DID raise the idea, a few years ago, of installing "instant run-off" elections in the US in order to eliminate the "spoiler" argument against 3rd-party candidates. Strangely, or perhaps understandably, nothing ever came of it.)

Posted by: Poilu on July 30, 2007 at 2:43 AM | PERMALINK

"And in case it needs to be said only morons resort to Hitler analogies; their arguments don't need to be dignified."

To the contrary, Linus. Spoken like a true moron yourself! Any valid historical analogy discarded for the mere sake of "political correctness" is an opportunity lost to gain valuable insights from the past. The Bush-Cheney Regime has MUCH in common with the Third Reich. And you, sir, are an ignorant twit (and, I suspect, a right-wing one.).

Incidentally, Hitler too appealed spuriously to the religiously "righteous" of his country. He was every bit as earnestly "Christian" as our own NeoConNazi Reichsfuehrers. (Just one of the MANY parallels.)
.
However, I should state, in Hitler's defense, that he was a legitimate war hero of the Great War -- twice awarded the Iron Cross for bravery -- whereas our own Chickenhawk "leaders" were either drunk and AWOL or pre-occupied with "other priotities" of the five-deferment persuasion. In that regard, Bush and Cheney can't hold a candle to "Uncle Adolf".

Posted by: Poilu on July 30, 2007 at 3:26 AM | PERMALINK

I thought if you mentioned Nazis or Hitler to make a point that wasn't about Nazi Germany you automatically lost the argument.

Posted by: Republicans need Lebensraum on July 30, 2007 at 4:06 AM | PERMALINK

[Handle spoof]

Posted by: theAmericanist on July 30, 2007 at 8:04 AM | PERMALINK

The origin of linking the old eugenics movement with the current crusade against global warming

This is a rather old idea that I first saw voiced by Michael Crichton, and he wasn't trying to paint anyone as fascists. He was trying to warn against loss of skepticism and warn against jumping to conclusions. That it is dangerously easy to get caught up in popular political movements which have a veneer of science to propell them.

Posted by: Brad on July 30, 2007 at 8:21 AM | PERMALINK

"Our reliance on science, then, basically means that we're pining away for the days of legalized racism. Gotcha....some bright boy or girl in the conservative movement dreamed this up and now it's being run up the flagpole to see if anyone salutes." -- Kevin Drum

Pining for racism? What the heck? How do you reach that conclusion from what Glenn Beck said?

This is the key phrase from Glenn Beck, "And you must silence all dissenting voices." The point isn't that you are racists, the point is that you are trying to silence dissent. Sheesh.

Posted by: Brad on July 30, 2007 at 8:49 AM | PERMALINK

He was every bit as earnestly "Christian"

No, the Nazis didn't like religion. The Nazis criticized and looked down on churches, there really wasn't a favored church in the Reich, and prominent religious figures in Germany criticized prominent Nazis (for their lack of religious belief, in fact- calling one Nazi leader a "neo-pagan" in public media). A few thousand Jehovah's witnesses disagreed with Hitler on religious grounds, and he had them all thrown into prison.

Posted by: Swan on July 30, 2007 at 9:08 AM | PERMALINK

If you had to choose one religion the Nazis belonged to over another, as a generalization, to be historically accurate you would have to say they were Christian. But they were Christian in the way an abusive man loves his battered wife- and I'm definitely not just talking about their relationship with the churches, I'm talking about their relationship with Christianity. And that's not my judgment that they didn't behave like Christians leading me to make that statement- rather I'm basing it on their own overt disdain for Christianity. What I think it boiled down to is I think they thought it wussified the people, and they didn't want some religious guy in a robe having a lot of sway over people and telling them what to do, when they could be listening to some asshole in a militaty dress uniform (who is obsessed with how he looks in his uniform) tell them what to do. They yearned for something more primitive, that had not picked up so much refined modern morality as a lot of the Christianity tended to.

Posted by: Swan on July 30, 2007 at 9:15 AM | PERMALINK

In fact, Hitler Youth functions (for juvenile members) and other totalitarian, public functions (for adults) that the people were required to attend were purposely scheduled on Sundays over and over again so they would conflict with church, and the people wouldn't be able to go to church.

A lot of the clergy hated Hitler, but what could they say? The Catholic chuch criticized some Nazi stuff at first, but when Hitler got nasty with them, they reversed course (as a policy, not necessarily individually, that is) because they apparently realized they might need to change their tune to continue to survive and thrive.

Posted by: Swan on July 30, 2007 at 9:19 AM | PERMALINK

QrazyQat: . . . anti-Semetic (and certified Hitler-lover) Thomas Edison.

Good thing I don't have to turn on an electric light to read this computer screen. That would make me an anti-Semite and Hitler-lover.

Posted by: cowalker on July 30, 2007 at 10:40 AM | PERMALINK

anti-Semetic (and certified Hitler-lover) Thomas Edison

The notion that Edison (1847-1931) was a Hitler-lover is hard to reconcile with his dates--was Edison really that focused on obscure German opposition politicians?

Posted by: rea on July 30, 2007 at 10:46 AM | PERMALINK

A few thousand Jehovah's witnesses disagreed with Hitler on religious grounds, and he had them all thrown into prison.

All killed, actually. Every last one of them.

Posted by: Disputo on July 30, 2007 at 12:23 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, the connection between progressive values and eugenics, real or imagined, dates back decades, and I'm sure you know it. A big part of the opposition to teaching Darwin was the feeling that Darwin's theories were contributing to social Darwinism, and the purported Planned-Parenthood/Eugenics connection gets dragged out every few years.

I'm always curious when the liberal bloggers pull out the "marching orders" theory. I mean, you're a blogger, Kevin; do you find that your postings are influenced by some lefty "first mover," or do you sometimes find yourself writing about the same thing as Klein or Yglesias for wholly innocent or even coincidental reasons?

Posted by: J Mann on July 30, 2007 at 12:35 PM | PERMALINK

As an anti-war conservative, I have to say one of the worst effects (aside, obviously, from things like massive loss of life and loss of credibility around the world) of the war and the mindless support for it by the Hugh Hewitts and Michelle Malkins of the world is that intelligent liberals like Mr. Drum now genuinely believe that conservatives, even an independent-minded war-skeptic like Ross who has almost nothing in common with Glenn Beck, really do get "marching orders" from some sort of mysterious conservative central command. Ross quite rightly has an angry response up on his blog right now.
Maybe the guy who painted Thomas Edison as a Hitler lover was thinking of Henry Ford?
The Catholic Church, by the way, was always opposed to eugenics in forceful terms. As for "even Oliver Wendell Holmes," he had some admirable qualities but in many ways was a rather nasty guy (but also not much of a Progressive either).

Posted by: James Kabala on July 30, 2007 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK

...intelligent liberals like Mr. Drum now genuinely believe that conservatives, even an independent-minded war-skeptic like Ross who has almost nothing in common with Glenn Beck, really do get "marching orders" from some sort of mysterious conservative central command. Ross quite rightly has an angry response up on his blog right now.

This belief is reinforced by the sheer stupidity of the memes that get passed around on the right. Ideas that should die an untimely death on some conservative's blog or in some conservative's book, instead proliferate around the entire right-wing blogosphere. The idea that progressives in any way support "eugenics" is so stupid that it should never get mentioned more than once, but sure enough next thing you know you're reading it here and there and somewhere else. Ross can be angry all he wants, but he should exercise a little more discretion in passing dumb ideas around if he doesn't want to be considered part of the right-wing noise machine.

Posted by: Xanthippas on July 30, 2007 at 2:30 PM | PERMALINK

So that's the deal. A few old-time progressives touted eugenics as a "scientific" approach to improving human nature back in the early 20th century, and modern-day progressives tout "science" as evidence that global warming is real in the early 21st century. Our reliance on science, then, basically means that we're pining away for the days of legalized racism. Gotcha.

No, that's not the deal. The possible ethical linkages amongst eugenics, abortion, and stem cell research have been kicked around for years, if not decades. Anyone pretending that this is some new theme spawned by global warming is, hmm, willfully ignorant and not familiar with Google.

Posted by: Tom Maguire on July 30, 2007 at 4:51 PM | PERMALINK

Do I have standing to invoke Godwin's law?

Americanist: No, you clearly do not. Having failed to refute the contention of Hitler's expressed religiosity -- so much like Bush's own coded appeals to the "faithful" -- in any way, you have no standing at ALL.

Besides, haven't you heard? Godwin's "law" has long been superseded due its incontrovertible IRRELEVANCE nowadays

Bt its successor, "Godwin's Second Law", remains fully in effect: "Whoever cries 'anti-semitic' first LOSES."

Swan: Sorry, you're equally incorrect: While your synopsis may reflect the ultimate evolution of overall NAZI ideology, it fails to address Hitler's own pseudo-populist "selling points":

"The Religious Views of Adolf Hitler"
http://www.stephenjaygould.org/ctrl/quotes_hitler.html
[Direct quotations.]

See also:
"HITLER AIMS BLOW AT 'GODLESS' MOVE"
Chancellor's Forces Seek the Catholic Support for Latest Campaign
Lansing State Journal (Michigan)
February 23, 1933

Posted by: Poilu on July 30, 2007 at 8:53 PM | PERMALINK

Heheh.

From several recent responses, it looks like the latest "marching order" is to deny the reality of marching orders.

Coordination is good, guys, but when you just cut-n-paste from each other, you give the game away.

Posted by: Disputo on July 30, 2007 at 9:07 PM | PERMALINK

Swan: I should clarify somewhat. I don't dispute your factual observations above, only their RELEVANCE to Hitler's own representations of himself. Clearly, he was NOT above invoking his proclaimed "Christianity" as false justification for some of his most reprehensible beliefs and policies, as the links above squarely indicate.

The same can be said without exaggeration regarding Bush's faux-pious rationalizations. (Of course, it's one of the oldest tricks in the book to attempt to conceal a bad motive beneath a facade of good intentions.)

Posted by: Poilu on July 30, 2007 at 9:27 PM | PERMALINK

Poilu, you're an idiot. It's sorta pointless to conduct your education in public but it has evidently been neglected, so...

What folks object to (myself, f'r instance) is making a bullshit parallel between Bush and Hitler.

Note I use the word "bullshit" precisely -- it's not that these comparisons are necessarily false (much bullshit is actually true, sort of), as that their truth or falsehood doesn't actually much matter to you. (That's why it's bullshit.)

If you want to make a comparison, well: make it. Be explicit -- "Bush's appeal to people of faith is NOT like Martin Luther King's, because... and it IS like Hitler's, because..."

But to toss off a half-assed observation like Hitler made religious appeals, and so does Bush, so they MUST be alike... and then to defend it from the fool's perspective you evidently have on the Third Reich, is, as noted, bullshit.

Consider what passes for your reasoning -- lord knows, you seem proud of it, like a fourth grader farting. "Having failed to refute the contention of Hitler's expressed religiosity -- so much like Bush's own coded appeals to the "faithful" -- in any way, you have no standing at ALL."

1) Whether I failed to refute Hitler's religiousity isn't relevant. For one thing, I didn't even ADDRESS it, cuz I can keep to the point. (Can you? Evidently not.)

For another, I cited precisely the turning point of organized religion in Germany regarding Hitler: the Fulda conference in 1932 which banned the swastika from the communion rail, followed by the reversal of that decision when Germany's leading lay Catholic brokered the deal that gave the Nazis power. (Note this happened BEFORE Hitler had the levers of government to threaten the Catholic Church: they did not allow Nazis to take communion because they feared persecution. If they had feared persecution, they wouldn't have helped him take power. Hell, as late as 1941, the Catholic church stopped euthenasia... of Catholics. The Catholic Church in Germany was not as afraid of the Nazis as much as the rationalization of Catholic silence on the Holocaust would have it.)

2) "so much like Bush's own coded appeals..." This is probably what you imagine to be your point. But you're not arguing BUSH, you're arguing Hitler AS IF he's like Bush. You accept your own premise, and want folks to accept it without examining it. Get a grip, you're dealing with folks who know a bit more about both subjects than you do, not to mention how actual thinking is done.

3) "no standing at ALL" Oddly enough, that's not up to you.

Ya see, Poilu, this last contention of yours pretty much proves you're a bullshitter. You say stuff that is simply obviously untrue, because in saying it you make an assumption about YOUR authority and role that ain't so.

I doubt you even noticed you did it -- a pretty fair summation of the holes in your education.

Just to get it out of the way: Hitler was raised Catholic, but there isn't even circumstantial evidence he was a practicing Catholic (in the canonically precise sense of his Easter Duty) at any time after his discharge from active service in the World War. To the extent any actual theology can be dug out of National Socialism, it is the notion of the Volk, the race, and the concept of Germans as the Herrenvolk, the master race.

That's it.

There is NOTHING remotely like that in Bush's many sins and failures.

Bush is more or less exactly what many of us have always said he was: a rich kid from rich parents, whose connections have always helped him at crucial moments, and who has always managed to fail UP. No doubt as a sinner like the rest of us, he is sincere about his evangelical Christian faith -- but I don't think anybody seriously believes that his Christianity is the 'sell everything you own, give the money to the poor, and follow Me' sort.

But there is no evidence -- none, zip, zero -- that he considers preppie knuckleheads like himself the Herrenvolk, suited by DNA to rule the world. And there is a LOT of evidence that, on some level, he actually believes the opposite -- that anybody can make it in America, that all the peoples of the world love freedom, and so forth.

Lord knows, I carry no water for this guy and what he stands for, what he's done.

But, puh-leeze, folks: asshats like Poilu are stoopider than Bush's cufflinks.

Posted by: theAmericanist on July 30, 2007 at 10:20 PM | PERMALINK

Well, look like there is another leftie who prefers the circular firing squad to put in the killfile.

Posted by: Disputo on July 30, 2007 at 11:44 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin,

This is a really, really stupid post. You can do better than this.

Posted by: Steve Sailer on July 31, 2007 at 2:03 AM | PERMALINK

Poilu, you're an idiot. It's sorta pointless to conduct your education in public but it has evidently been neglected, so...

"Americanist": Wrong again. I'm actually quite bright and rather well-educated. (You, on the other hand are obviously talking out your arse.) And I certainly don't need any "tutoring" from a petulant, bloviating, right-wing shill with atrocious manners who plainly can't even read, much less "analyse", a simple comment.

Clearly you are an obnoxious, ignorant twit -- out for a fight over some perceived slight of "political correctness" -- who's hardly worth talking to. Don't LIKE my take on the historical analogies? Well, that's just too bad. You know what they say in Russia: "Toughshitsky!"

you're dealing with folks who know a bit more about both subjects than you do

Not in your case, obviously! Nice try, though. If bile were brilliance you'd have earned your Nobel by now.

Did I mention that you're an astoundingly presumptious ass? (Or perhaps it's just that your particular brand of idiot savant-ery is characterized by occcasional fits of imagined clairvoyance.) Whatever the case, "Karnak" you're clearly not.

Posted by: Poilu on July 31, 2007 at 2:11 AM | PERMALINK

I see I accidentally omitted the one link above. Apologies to those actually interested:

HITLER AIMS BLOW AT 'GODLESS' MOVE
Chancellor's Forces Seek the Catholic Support for Latest Campaign
Lansing State Journal (Michigan)
February 23, 1933

The Religious Views of Adolf Hitler
[Direct quotations]

Posted by: Poilu on July 31, 2007 at 2:35 AM | PERMALINK

ROFL -- gotta love a guy who brags about how smart and educated he is while demonstrating the opposite.

A hint, Poilu: SHOW us you know what you're talking about. Your links don't back you up.

Another hint: respond to what folks say. F'r instance, I've twice noted the ACTUAL turning point of organized German religion regarding the Nazi movement, the change in direction by the Catholic church between 1932 (the Fulda swastika bn) and 1933 (von Papen, Pacelli and the concordat).

This is one of those indications of your lack of intelligence: you cite a SINGLE, secondary source in 1933, without evidently noticing that my evidence is better (primary, earlier, and denoting motivation and consequence). Likewise, using better evidence, I note that your point is bullshit, demonstrated by not only how shallow your 'evidence' is, but also that you ultimately care nothing about whether it is true or not: the essence of biullshit.

Final hint: when you spend 85% of your 'rebuttal' bragging about yourself, and NONE addressing what you claim to be your argument (that, um, the Bush=Hitler parallels are NOT bullshit), this proves my point, cuz you obviously care more about your ego than the argument.

LOL -- and a point of personal privilege: folks who know me realize that so far from being a 'right wing shill; I have liberal Democratic credentials out the wazoo.

And -- "tough shitsky"? How clearly you show you depth and range. You're all "По-русски."

Posted by: theAmericanist on July 31, 2007 at 8:24 AM | PERMALINK

I must disagree with Craigee's description of conservatives as "reactionaries." They are not reactionary, they are restorationists... they wish to restore this country to a mythological ideal (think 1950s, think June Cleaver in "Leave it to Beaver") that never was. This is best evidenced in their use of the term "traditional family." As has been clearly demonstrated by a myriad of sociologists and social historians, there is no such animal as a "traditional family."

Conservatives are, by definition, psychiatrically delusional. A rational person knows that (1) the past is the past, and (2) time always moves forward. A delusional person thinks (1) the past is glorious contrary to the facts, and (2) time can be turned backwards.

Posted by: allen on July 31, 2007 at 10:13 AM | PERMALINK

I've often thought that the best unintentional insight into WHY conservatives think as they do, is Reagan's remark when somebody attacked him over his approach to affirmative action, etc., that he had supported civil rights "when the country didn't know it had a racial problem."

It was a remarkable thing to say. Reagan obviously meant (and it is true) that he had taken a mildly bold stand against Jim Crow when it was still legal. But for him to blithely speak as if African Americans (and others )weren't part of "the country" just speaks volumes.

Progressives make a similar mistake when we insist that conservatives HAVE to be as stupid, delusional and racist as we say they are. They're not -- there ARE legit arguments to be had about Iraq, abortion, affirmative action, etc.

But I don't think it is exactly true that conservatives believe time flows backwards if you just wish hard enough. That was Buckley's irony when he said a conservative's job was to stand over history yelling "Stop!"

Reagan, after all, became something more than a retired B-movie star when he repeated a few thousand times: "Progress is our most important product."

Posted by: theAmericanist on July 31, 2007 at 12:07 PM | PERMALINK

UPDATE 2: Ah. A friend emails to say that Jonah Goldberg's new book, Liberal Fascism, links progressivism and eugenics. Of course it does. And various folks are probably just starting to get their advance reading copies. So this will soon be the topic du jour in conservative circles.

Advance reading copies? Of something that has yet to be written? Jonah is still trying to figure out what his subtitle is going to be - I hear the latest iteration is "From Kant to Krispy Kreme."

Posted by: commie atheist on July 31, 2007 at 2:17 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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