Yeah , yeah, and Santorum before him and Limphaugh before him.
President Bush in recent days has recast the global war on terror into a “war against Islamic fascism.” Fascism, in fact, seems to be the new buzz word for Republicans in an election season dominated by an unpopular war in Iraq.
Funny thing about Rovian politics, it seems that the basic technique is to identify a weakness in yourself and then accuse your opponent of exactly that characteristic. That way you can force them to deny, and by doing so you’ve removed their ammunition against yourself.
By calling these terrorist thugs, fascists, the neocons are 1) in essence admitting publicly that they are in fact fascists and 2) redefining the word to mean something completely different.
New type of fascism because they have to redefine the word, and quickly, before some Democrat actually grows a set and uses it on them!
And Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld on Tuesday took it a step further in a speech to an American Legion convention in Salt Lake City, accusing critics of the administration’s Iraq and anti-terrorism policies of trying to appease “a new type of fascism.”
Uniforms? What the fuck do uniforms have to do with being fascists? Bush himself is a prime example of the fact that one need not dress like Mussolini to be a fascist. Christ we must be stupid for them to really expect us to buy this crap.
White House aides and outside Republican strategists said the new description is an attempt to more clearly identify the ideology that motivates many organized terrorist groups, representing a shift in emphasis from the general to the specific.
“I think it’s an appropriate definition of the war that we’re in,” said GOP pollster Ed Goeas. “I think it’s effective in that it definitively defines the enemy in a way that we can’t because they’re not in uniforms.”
What I find incomprehensible is the fact that these “strategists” talk about this stuff like it’s a big game - as if no one’s paying the slightest attention to them. Just stupidly gobbling up their stupid - oh yeah. I keep forgetting.
Wow, a voice of sanity, but the WINEP is not exactly invited to the White House for dinner these days.
Dennis Ross, a Mideast adviser to both the first Bush and Clinton administrations and now the director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said he would have chosen different words.
“The `war on terror’ has always been a misnomer, because terrorism is an instrument, it’s not an ideology. So I would always have preferred it to be called the `war with radical Islam,’ not with Islam but with `radical Islam,”‘ Ross said.
Why even mention the religion? “Because that’s who they are,” Ross said. “Fascism had a certain definition. Whether they meet this or not, one thing is clear: They’re radical. They represent a completely radical and intolerant interpretation of Islam.”
But even he has it wrong - it shouldn’t be called a war at all - elevating this to the status of war is bestowing the honor of warrior on these pissant thugs.
While “fascism” once referred to the rigid nationalistic one-party dictatorship first instituted in Italy, it has “been used very loosely in all kinds of ways for a long time,” said Wayne Fields, a specialist in presidential rhetoric at Washington University in St. Louis.
“Typically, the Bush administration finds its vocabulary someplace in the middle ground of popular culture. It seems to me that they’re trying to find something that resonates, without any effort to really define what they mean,” Fields said.
Something that resonates - exactly. Some word that will evoke a visceral response in those that hear it (there’s a special hatred of fascists in this country - we lead the world in crushing them not so many years ago). A word they don’t really have to define or explain to anyone. To ask them to define it will just get you a slight, tired grin, that condescanding kinda grin that says “oh you silly liberal, you fell in the trap again, please, allow me to make you the fool”.
This particular word more than resonates though, it’s nearly the perfect word for the times: it’ll bolster the poll numbers, it gives one simple, compact “idea word” that all the rethugs can use to sound united, and it deflects anyone from calling these fucking fascists what they are. By redefining the word, they’ve made themselves innocent of all charges.
And that brings us to the obvious conclusion: This is the worst type of newspeak, and it’ s happening.
[Updated 8:50 8/30/06]
Imagine that - a newsman has the set to call the bastards out.