In the LaLa Land for Historical Ignoramuses in which Michele Bachmann resides, the loss of six million Jewish lives — as well as millions of gypsies, homosexuals, Catholics, and many other disfavored groups — is analogous to Americans’ (supposed) loss of “economic liberty” (defined by Bachmann as eliminating Medicare and Social Security for the elderly and disabled, and requiring the wealthy to pay income taxes in order to fund these, and anything else that helps what Emma Lazarus called the “wretched refuse” — although of course Lazarus was not using that term as an expression of her personal belief):
In a speech to New Hampshire Republicans, Bachmann recounted learning about a horrific time in history as a child — the Holocaust — and wondering if her mother did anything to stop it. She said she was shocked to hear that many Americans weren’t aware that millions of Jews had died until after World War II ended.
Bachmann said the next generation will ask similar questions about what their elders did to prevent them from facing a huge tax burden.
“I tell you this story because I think in our day and time, there is no analogy to that horrific action,” she said, referring to the Holocaust. “But only to say, we are seeing eclipsed in front of our eyes a similar death and a similar taking away. It is this disenfranchisement that I think we have to answer to.”
The generation of Americans just entering the work force now could eventually see 75 percent of their earnings sucked up by income taxes, Social Security and Medicare, Bachmann said. Those young workers are going to wonder what people were doing while “watching quite literally our economic liberty pulled out from under us.”
“The question comes down to this: what will you say to that next generation about what you did to make sure that wouldn’t be their fate?” she said.
Emphasis is mine. There is no analogy to the Holocaust, but taxes and social programs are analogous to the Holocaust. The woman is a birdbrain.
Digby reminds us of the Mt. Vesuvius-size volcanic eruption on the right that followed former Rep. Alan Grayson’s use of the word “holocaust” to characterize the millions of Americans without health insurance. Although I think Digby is correct that Grayson was using that word in its generic sense, he should have known that one simply cannot use the word “holocaust” in its general sense after the historic Holocaust. The generic meaning has been burned away, literally.
Grayson both phoned and wrote a letter to the Anti-Defamation League to apologize for his poor word choice, and his apology was unequivocal. So it would be appropriate, I think, for Republicans in Congress and right-wing media pundits like Erick Erickson to condemn Bachmann’s analogizing taxation to the Holocaust as strongly as they did Grayson’s use of the lower-case “h” word “holocaust” to refer to the health care situation. But I don’t really believe they will.