16 thoughts on “Another Inappropriate Historical Comparison

  1. wgdavis October 18, 2012 / 1:26 pm

    Sounds more like partisan sour grapes to me. Carlson was over the top, but the basics of what he said were correct. Certainly does not rise to this much notice.

    • Brooks D. Simpson October 18, 2012 / 3:19 pm

      I’ll decide to notice what I want to notice on my blog, and you can decide what to notice on yours. 🙂

  2. Mark October 18, 2012 / 1:50 pm

    Brooks, surely you aren’t suggesting that Carlson is comparing the assassination to the interruption are you? He didn’t. An analogy between A and B does not in any way imply a moral parity between A and B.

    This is one of those “issues about the issue”, rather than an issue. Carlson isn’t inappropriate, but Janet Shan is to infer moral equivalence where it wasn’t claimed.

    • Brooks D. Simpson October 18, 2012 / 3:18 pm

      All I’ve said is that the comparison is inappropriate. Surely you’re not saying it’s appropriate. One can (and should) make of what one wants of Shan’s analysis. And as usual, people will try to infer something about my politics, and that usually says something about their politics. But let’s not put words in my mouth a la Lucas and Caldwell. My readers should be better than that.

      • John Foskett October 18, 2012 / 3:45 pm

        In other words, the analogy is inappropriate (not to mention stupid). The prevailing, core problem in this country (or at least one of them) is that people have lost the ability to actually think. Stating an indisputable fact – that the analogy is stupid – apparently now defines the critic’s political leanings. I’ve seen better use of deductive reasoning among the denizens of the south 40. End the bloody madness.

      • rcocean October 18, 2012 / 7:05 pm

        We already know your politics, Brooks. You’re against Slavery, for the Union and in favor of Negro Equality. I have you pegged as a Black Republican – and possibly a former Whig.

      • Mark October 18, 2012 / 7:26 pm

        >> All I’ve said is that the comparison is inappropriate.

        It wasn’t a comparison in the sense you’re implying. “Apart from that Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play?” is a common expression in widespread use by polite company. In this case the comparison made is NOT to Lincoln’s assassination, though that is indeed what is meant by “that”, but rather the comparison is between the perspective of someone we think is warped with the warped perspective of someone who would ask Mrs. Lincoln such an absurd question. Carlson’s expression is logically identical, so it is by no means inappropriate for the same reasons.

        • wgdavis October 19, 2012 / 12:07 pm

          It was a comparison and it was inappropriate. That said, I just don’t feel it is worth all this attention as it IS election season and all kinds of people on both sides are saying all kinds of inappropriate things. Brooks chose to highlight it here because of the historical connection, and that is his right to do.

          Personally, from an historical perspective I take more offense at Lincoln the Vampire Slayer than I do at Tucker Carlson’s off the mark analogy. That said, murder is the worst crime a man can commit, and a debate redirect does not rise to that kind of comparison. It was stupidly silly, and as I noted above, over the top, just like calling Romney a felon and a killer. But then those don’t have an historical connection to this blog.

  3. Donald R. Shaffer October 18, 2012 / 1:52 pm

    Like I said on Facebook, at least Carlson didn’t compare Crowley to Hitler. Some bozos no doubt had to Google “John Wilkes Booth.”

    • rcocean October 18, 2012 / 7:00 pm


      You beat me to it.

      Usually when TV pundits talk reach for Historical analogies – we get Hitler, Nazi’s, Munich, the KKK, or even Joe Stalin. This time we were lucky to get off with just a tasteless mention of J.W. Booth.

      • Mark October 19, 2012 / 8:32 am

        It wasn’t a historical analogy in any sense. It is an analogy of identical logical form to “Am I a Laker fan? Is the Pope Catholic?” Carlson compares Crowley to Boothe as much as I just compared an LA Laker athlete to the Pope. Not at all. People are reacting to what Shan asserted uncritically, but she makes the same mistake.

      • Jerrydeanhalleck October 19, 2012 / 10:57 am

        I agree Rcocean. You just can’t count on TV commentators to know nothin’ about nothin’

  4. michael confoy October 18, 2012 / 1:55 pm

    Hope Jon Stewart has something to say on the Daily Show tonight about these events.

  5. Al Mackey October 19, 2012 / 5:45 pm

    First of all, he was historically inaccurate. Booth wasn’t sitting quietly watching the play before assassinating Lincoln.

    Secondly, I agree the comparison would be inappropriate, but I think what he was getting at was he was claiming Crowley became an active participant on one side of the debate and chose her moment to become an active participant. His point appears to be that Romney was winning up until he asserts she entered the fray on the President’s behalf (what he believes).

    With those two points in mind, I agree the analogy fails.

  6. sfwatson October 19, 2012 / 8:50 pm

    I would really like to read this post, but all I can see or pull up is the interesting comments. I’m fairly new to this site. What am I doing wrong that I can’t see the original posting?

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