Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Islam, Fascism, and Liberals

Neo-neocon has a good post today about the word “Islamofascism”. She derives it both from the behavior of its fanatical adherents, and from its historical connection with the Nazi regime in World War II.

What is most notable and poignant about the post is the reminder of the consequences she has had to endure by “outing” herself as a conservative fish in a vast liberal pond. I’d don’t know that I’d have the guts to do what she did.

And — alas — her astute and cogent analysis of Islamofascism did not manage to bring any of her friends around to her position.

Dymphna and I are fortunate — we move mostly among people who are either conservative or apolitical. Oh, we have our liberal friends, but our political positions do not define the relationship, and we can generally avoid trouble by staying away from political topics.

It’s not so easy for Neo and Roger Simon and others like them. When they emerged from the political closet, they might as well have painted targets on their foreheads and handed out guns to all their (former) friends.

All we can do is keep telling them how glad we are to have them here with us in the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy.


Annoy Mouse said...

It is curious that most my friends have been traditionally liberal, specifically anti-Bush. Although I promote myself as something of a social liberal and politically conservative, the unrelenting bombast puts me off my heels from time to time. I was sitting in a raucous bar in a flamboyant part of San Diego last Saturday evening chatting with an equally jovial friend of mine about no such particular inane matters when this Irish chap sitting next to me blurted out ‘I don’t like Bush’. I can’t for the life of me understand what brought that on but being in the amiable mood that I was I said ‘well, you got to admit, they’re all a bunch of turds’, to which he replied ‘I just don’t like Bush’. Brilliant conversation that. I wonder if the guy was just trying to make friends or looking for somebody with whom to vent his spleen. I have found that when the conversation turns for the worse politically, it is rarely difficult to steer the conversation to something universally repugnant, and save what cheer may have been lost while partisan politics was considered. Bush Derangement Syndrome is truly unique.

Dymphna said...

There was Lincoln Derangement Syndrome, too.

And Reagan Derangement Syndrome. God, they hated every single thing about him. The only reason they're not actively hating him now is that they have Bush front and center in their projections.

When they didn't have Bush, the spittle would fly about Rush Limbaugh. There has to be an object.

Shrinkwrapped lays it out real well.

Annoy Mouse said...

You’re right about that, of course. In about 1990 I was taking some chemistry classes and on the wall of our lecture hall was something to the effect that ‘Rush Limbaugh is a nazi, racist pig’. Well, I am not interested in listening to some incendiary blow hard, like Morton Downey, Jr and that is who I equated Rush Limbaugh with. Heard it over and over. It was a few years later that I was running some errands in the company truck and I heard this guy yakking on, funny, thoughtful, nuanced, informative, and for a few years I was hooked to listening to Rush Limbaugh. I don’t care to listen to him anymore, reasons of my own, but not because he is a racist Nazi hate-monger. The Left has mastered the politics of personal destruction but are quick to see it curbed when they feel it is being used wrongly, such as in defiance of the murderers of women and children. They can always frame debate by using the civility of their political opponents against them, when they proclaim, racist, sexist, zealot, neo-con! I am loath to be bothered by such civilities any more. One of my more subtle debating techniques is to tell them ‘when the shooting starts, I am coming to find you and I am going to kill you’. It really throws a wet blanket on the notion of guilt tripping. The Islamofascists use the same rhetorical methods to control the debate, but I am obliged to say ‘when the shooting starts, I am coming to find you and I am going to kill you’. Nice touch

Always On Watch said...

I've lost a few clients over the issue of speaking the truth about Islamism. Oh, well, such is the price of integrity. Since 9/11, I no longer soft-pedal my views when I'm asked them.

On the other hand, I have clients and friends who don't see matters as I do; we still get along just fine. One "dissenter" is my liberal neighbor. But even though he didn't vote for Bush, he had no resentment at all about the sign in my yard. Certainly my neighbor never suffered from BDS.

I'll add here that I tend to run in conservative circles. Except for my father-in-law, who is ACLU. We've learned to avoid certain discussions as we'll never change one another's mind.

Dymphna makes a good point: There has to be an object.

Maybe I'm just more aware of it, but BDS seems to be an excessive form of the syndrome. Reagan also seemed to be a more likeable individual. Perhaps because he'd been an actor, with a bit of folksy charisma and could crack jokes about himself?

Annoy Mouse said...

My ex-neighbors were (still are) crypto-Marxists (talk about putting a fine point on a label) who constantly ejaculated about the ‘evil’ of Ronald Reagan. I would point out that his firm position saved the Iran hostages and that his vision was vital to the down fall of the Soviet Union. They would respond with fire in their eyes that ‘the cold war was a scam perpetuated by the CIA in unholy alliance with big business. No threat ever existed. These people went to college in the 60’s (UCLA) and served in the Army (peace time) but had managed to convince themselves of the most absurd beliefs. I do not speak with them any more.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of liberals--As a very naive 18 year old, I voted for Jimmy Carter in 1980. The word on campus was that RR (Ronald Reagan) was a war-monger and senile to boot. Some years later, after looking at Carter's record, recently personified in his latest book, all I can say is Karma is a bitch!

hank_F_M said...

Annoy Mouse

Maybe "I don't like Bush" or some such is a new pick up line.

hank_F_M said...

I have theory.

The modern prejudice against the idea that there can be no absolute truth is affecting the tone of public debate.

If you accept the idea that there is some sort of truth, even though the person you are arguing with disagrees on what it is, you can have discussion where you use facts to support an argument and do not need to resort to the personal attack. The other person can do the same.

But if there is no truth, then facts are irrelevant to determine truth, so you have to resort to the personal attack because that’s all you have.

Just a thought.

Cobalt Blue said...

There is a presumption on the part of liberals that I do not find among conservatives. That is a presumption that they have license to announce their anti-Bush or anti-war political views apropos of nothing--just launch into them, without expecting any disagreement. I don't think I look particularly liberal, but I get it all the time. When I don't say anything, don't pick up the invitation to indulge in BDS, they get the picture. But why go around announcing your political views unbidden?

"Methinks he doth protest too much."

airforcewife said...

Our last stationing was in California's East Bay. When Hubby returned from his tour in Iraq, our next door neighbor told us all about how this was a "stupid, lying war."

Gee, thanks lady, for that update after hubby's behind had been shot at for several months...

I honestly didn't get it. It never would have crossed my mind to make a comment along the lines of "Maybe you shouldn't have been there, you dolt" to someone who had been in such a situation I didn't agree with...

No manners, there. And no ability to absorb rational arguments, either.