George Will, whose pseudo-logical musings at the Washington Post inspired our work here so many years ago, has moved from ABC to Fox News. In keeping with the tone of his new employer, he waxes historical about the legality of Obamacare (via Talking Points Memo):
In an interview with NPR’s “Morning Edition,” host Steve Inskeep asked Will about President Barack Obama’s argument that Republicans are short-circuiting the system by using government funding and the debt ceiling as leverage to dismantle Obamacare, rather than repealing the law outright.
“How does this short-circuit the system?” Will said. “I hear Democrats say, ‘The Affordable Care Act is the law,’ as though we’re supposed to genuflect at that sunburst of insight and move on. Well, the Fugitive Slave Act was the law, separate but equal was the law, lots of things are the law and then we change them.”
Many here are familiar with Godwin’s law, where as a discussion grows longer, the probability of a Hitler analogy approaches 1. We might now offer two variations on that. Given any possible disagreement, the probability of a completely inept Hitler is initially 1. The second variation is implied in the first: Hitler is a mere stylistic choice: the invoker can select any other moral abomination according to need.
One further rule: some iron-manner will come to the defense of the Godwinator:
I generally agree with TPM, but this headline is an outrageous distortion of what GW said.
His view is that Obamacare law is wrong, which is a legitimate view (not mine). He then points out that we have rescinded laws that we all regard as wrong. He was speaking to the process, not the content.
Nah. That isn’t his view and this ignores the inappropriate analogy. Looking past these kinds of rhetorical outrages keeps them alive.