I suspect those same pundits who say [defunding Obamacare] can’t be done, if it had been in the 1940s we would have been listening to them. . . .They would have been saying, ‘You cannot defeat the Germans
In this case, it’s not an argument that what’s being opposed is wrong, but that not actively opposing the thing is wrong. I think, then we have two different forms of the ad Hitlerem.
Direct Ad Hitlerem:
You do X or propose X
Hitler did X or proposed X
Therefore, you’re like Hitler and X is wrong.
Here, I think Cruz is making an indirect form of Ad Hitlerem. It runs roughly:
He does X (and X is wrong)
We can stop him from doing X
His doing X is like Hitler’s doing Y
Therefore, he’s not only wrong to do X, but we’re wrong (read: appeasers) to not actively oppose and stop his doing X.
My view about Ad Hitlerem is that it’s a weak analogy, and that’s the case for both direct and indirect. A further thing about the indirect form is that it depends on the direct form. Essentially: This guy is like Hitler , so this guy is bad (Direct form); If you can stop a guy who’s bad like Hitler, you should as to fail to do so is appeasement (Indirect form).