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September 26, 2008

New Group Blub

Our esteemed colleagues Jonathan Versen, Rob Payne, and Bob in Pacifica have created a group blub, Dead Horse. Recent recommendation: Bob on the way the American Heritage definition of fascism underwent an odd shift between their 1975 and 1993 editions.

—Jonathan Schwarz

Posted at September 26, 2008 12:20 PM

That definitional switch was really interesting--I wonder how that happened? Was it a conscious slant or was it the zeitgeist changing?

I remember first hearing that the Nazis were actually leftists back in the 80's--after all they were National SOCIALISTS and favored big government, something that free market conservatives never want, obviously.

Posted by: Donald Johnson at September 26, 2008 01:14 PM

thanks for the mention-- and I agree, Bob's post is pretty good.

Posted by: Jonathan Versen at September 26, 2008 01:41 PM

Actually, pondering Donald J.'s rhetorical question about the zeitgeist, I find myself thinking about Reagan's visit to the Bitburg cemetery, and how the press, being composed of
A. humans, and more specifically
B. humans employed by large corporations,

will tend to make unconscious mental adjustments to make the world around us seem normal. Of course even without the press scripting the process the rest of us do this too, including dictionary publishers.

I notice, nevertheless, that (so far) I haven't heard anybody try to blame the implosion of the economy on Islamofascism. Maybe it's just the proverbial other shoe, waiting to drop.

Posted by: Jonathan Versen at September 26, 2008 06:09 PM

How about what's happening to "socialism?," as tyhe LEFT struggles to condemn the kleptocrats without, you know, really bothering with the systemic causes rooted in the very nature of the capitlist 'ethic' (to the extent that one may the word "ethic" in a converstion aboput capital).

It dismays me endlessly to see the bail-out labelled "socialism" by critics (e.g., Bernie Sanders) who want to appropriate the opprobrium which the word associates in peon-usage to disparage Corporatist give-aways.

I lost every bit of respect I may ever have held for Sanders on that little stunt. It really pissed me off...

Posted by: woody, tokin librul at September 26, 2008 07:02 PM

My guess is that the dictionary definition changed because someone looked at it one day and thought, "Jeez, that sounds like Reaganism!"

Posted by: Bob In Pacifica at September 27, 2008 03:56 PM