Some of you may have followed the saga of the tumultuous gestation and uncomfortable birth of Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, the first book by the NRO commentator. This is one of those books that generates a lot of talk, pro and con, in advance; Goldberg repeatedly changed the subtitle (leading to satirical contests to come up with the best title), and some wag hacked Amazon and changed the title to reflect how long it was taking him to finish it.
Heedless of the rule that I should not judge a book by its cover — even, presumably, when that cover includes a smiley face with a Hitler mustache — I made a couple of firm predictions about the book:
- First, in the tradition of Dinesh D'Souza's The Enemy at Home: The Cultural Left and Its Responsibility For 9/11 and Ponnuru's The Party of Death, this would be an opportunity for a right-wing commentator to use a deliberately inflammatory title and then whine that everyone has identified the book as a polemic without even reading it; and
- Most of Goldberg's thesis would be of the "Hitler liked dogs, liberals like dogs, therefore liberals are like Hitler" caliber.
I was joking a bit with the second one. Surely, however ultimately feckless his reasoning, Goldberg would muster some sort of grind-it-out-the-last-night logic in support of his central thesis that modern American liberalism is comparable to fascism.
This week, the gentlemen at Sadly, No have been demonstrating that my first instincts were correct. Read their discussions of excerpts of the book, they are jaw-dropping and hilarious. It was this one today that demonstrated to me that Goldberg's logic is indeed just as puerile as my satire of it had suggested.
We are all Nazis now, it would seem.
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