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Saturday, March 11, 2006

One of These Dictators Is Not Like the Others 

If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator.
-- President-Elect George W. Bush, Dec. 18, 2000

Via Zemblan patriot J.M.: Jay Bennish, the Colorado high school teacher demonized by the right after a junior-league David Horowitz taped him violating Godwin's Law in class, gets to keep his job:
A Cherry Creek social studies teacher will not lose his job, after a student went public with a tape recording of controversial comments the teacher had made in class.

Superintendent Monte C. Moses said Jay Bennish will be reinstated to his job at Overland High School, and will be teaching on Monday . . . .

“I'm very excited to continue encouraging students to think critically, to encourage democratic values in our society, to promote social justice just as I have always attempted to do,” he said. “I will continue trying to prove myself as a teacher, be the most effective teacher I can be” . . . .

Bennish had cited "eerie similarities" between Bush's State of the Union address and "things that Adolf Hitler used to say."
According to his lawyer, Mr. Bennish wishes he'd "picked another dictator" -- and we can't say we blame him. Comparisons to Hitler are inexcusable and serve only to degrade the speaker, unless of course the speaker has already reached the absolute nadir of degradation:
"I mean, we've got Chavez in Venezuela with a lot of oil money," Rumsfeld added. "He's a person who was elected legally — just as Adolf Hitler was elected legally — and then consolidated power and now is, of course, working closely with Fidel Castro and Mr. Morales and others."
Mr. Rumsfeld here pinpoints, perhaps inadvertently, the one fatal flaw in Bennish's analogy. As Kurt Vonnegut explains:
“The only difference between Bush and Hitler,” Vonnegut adds, “is that Hitler was elected.”

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