masthead-highres

Friday, October 13, 2006

Censoring Climate Change, the Stormtrooper Way

The staffer at Grist magazine has retracted his statement that those of us unconvinced of the wisdom of the full range of policy prescriptions argued for by Al Gore et al on climate should be subjected to Nuremberg-style trials.

I was thinking "good for him," but then I saw what he posted today. Some excerpts:
Now that the wingnuts have moved on to their latest outrage of the day, let's take a closer look at the notorious Nuremberg analogy. On reflection, I've come to think that it's inappropriate -- and not because it gave Matt Drudge and Rush Limbaugh (and Brit Hume!) one of their patented umbrage woodies. Three reasons:

First off, never violate Godwin's Law. It's a law for a reason.

Two, the Nuremberg trials resulted in executions. I'm opposed to state-sanctioned execution in all cases, but would certainly never advocate it merely for the crime of being a lying scumbag.

Third -- and more to the point -- Nuremberg was primarily about prosecution and punishment. I'm not a particularly vindictive person, and I'm not that interested in retribution. What I'm interested in is the truth: that the truth be aired; that those who have lied own up to it and be held accountable; that those who suffered as a result of the lies be allowed to tell their stories.

For these reasons, a far better analogy for what I had in mind would have been South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission...
So a state-sponsored investigation of political dissent is still advocated.

Ironically, the fellow believes a state-sanctioned crackdown on independent thought would serve the cause of promoting "independent, verifiable information."

Hello, fellow. Clue in. You don't get independent thought by using the government to smash it. On any issue.

The fellow -- David Roberts is his name -- then says:
What I want is some sort of public forum where the liars can be exposed for what they are...
That's what public discussions do, dear fellow. "Lies" only get identified when people are free to speak and share information.

Mr. Roberts then says:
No one is more of a First Amendment absolutist than me. Bring on the open, good-faith debate.
I'm presuming he does not realize he's contradicting himself.

However, we "wingnuts" will continue to say what we truly believe, threats of stormtroopers -- inspirted by Germans or Soth Africans, it hardly matters -- notwithstanding.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:19 PM

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