Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Sowing confusion

Lucianne Goldberg should be proud. Her son has published a book! So no longer is dear Jonah's most notable cultural contribution a penchant for fixing lame, dated Simpsons references to whatever crosses his field of vision. He's movin' on up.

It should be said that the book is, quite simply, brilliant. Brilliant in that it sucks fascism of any coherent meaning so that it all but disappears as an identifiable phenomenon -- or, perhaps, as something that we should be worried about appearing on the horizon.

Plus, if history is any guide, his "research" is bound to open up a whole new area of inquiry for those lucky enough to be on the Scaife, Coors, Olin, et al. gravy train. As you might recall, large portions of the conservative movement did much the same thing with "racism" in the 1990s by penning multiple tomes that claimed to offer sharp insight into how our previous historical lens was so very, very wrong. As a result, they confused the issue of "racism" so much that it became an absurdly malleable phenomenon, to the extent that you now have upper middle class whites regularly complaining about "racism" when they don't get into their desired graduate program, or when that legacy admission isn't as forthcoming as previously thought.

Accordingly, Jonah's book will help replace widespread ignorance about a difficult historical issue with widespread confusion, in addition to the bonus of opening up space where folks with fascist tendencies will now be able to brand their opponents as fascist, while few note the Orwellian irony.

So kudos to Jonah. He's finally starting to earn that wingnut welfare.