Three Years For David Irving, or, Maybe There Really Is Something To This Whole Holocaust Thing

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An Austrian court has sentenced David Irving to three years in prison, after the historian pled guilty to the charge of denying the Holocaust. This follows a surprise reversal from Irving: A few days ago he announced that he'd discovered new evidence in 1992 indicating that Jews really were killed by the Third Reich—evidence that apparently was so cleverly hidden it had previously been available to everybody on the planet except the self-described foremost historian of fascism. "I am not a Holocaust denier. My views have changed," Irivng said. "History is a constantly growing tree: the more you learn, the more documents are available, the more you learn, and I have learned a lot since 1989… Yes, there were gas chambers. Millions of Jews died, there is no question. I don't know the figures. I'm not an expert on the Holocaust."

Details about the trial and the larger fight over Muhammad and free speech in Europe. My own defense of Irving's right to be wrong.

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  1. What hypocrites. They can insult islam all they want but God forbid they deny the holocaust…

  2. What a shame. The Austrians could have decided that the best way to deal with their shady past is to discuss it openly; instead they’ve sentenced a guy, admittedly a really slimy one, for three years for having an unpopular and incorrect opinion. Austria desparately needs more late-night comedians.

  3. It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself.

  4. Austria’s bold repudiation of fascism and Nazism is a wee bit too clever.

  5. I don’t know when you draw the line between libel, fraud, and free speech. But I think that Austria drew it in the wrong manner here. I’d have been a lot more sympathetic to a libel case from a Holocaust survivor.

    Irving was basically saying the whole lot of them are lying, which is surely cause for a class action libel suit, garnishing any profits from his lying piece of crap.

  6. David Irving is an anti-semitic slimeball who spews pseudo-history (Read Michael Shermer’s “Why People Believe Weird Things for more info on Irving). However, freedom of speech is freedom of speech, even for anti-semitic slimballs who spew pseudo-history.

    I’ve spoken to Europeans about the laws regarding “hate speech” and they usually support them by saying that “there are still virulent anti-semite sentiments in Europe and we don’t want to give them power by allowing them a forum.” My response: “And what is stopping you from countering their hate-filled nonsense with the truth? Why not let the idiots public laughing stocks?”

    Wouldn’t censoring Europe’s skinheads play into their delusions of persecution by the “Evil Zionist Conspiracy?” There is nothing more dangerous than a violent zealot with a martyrdom complex. Silencing feeds into that paranoia and makes them all more more violent.

    So let the wanna-be Nazi’s rant.

  7. As a nonpracticing jew (and a criminal defense lawyer), I’m horribly offended at the notion of someone being thrown in jail for SAYING anything. Let the marketplace of ideas sort it out, not the state through criminal penalties. Nobody should be in jail for 1 minute for believing in something, no matter how ridiculous or offensive.

  8. As Dennis Miller once said: Freedom of speech means you have to put up with David Duke. No freedom of speech means you could get [guy whose name invokes Godwin]. There’s a big difference.

  9. Who wants to bet that neo-nazis start calling this his “Galileo moment” – ie, that he was forced to recant and accept punishment?

    *sigh*

  10. Thanx Bruce!

    What he said!

    Blogimi Dei

  11. Good point, Eric.

  12. obviously the jewish establishment (and Austria) have a LOT to hide if they have to imprison authors for a “thought crime”. Obviously they can’t fight Irving with arguments so they have to silence him with imprisonment. I just looked at his website (fpp.co.uk) and intend to buy his book to find out what this is all about, he must have been onto something, or they wouldn’t have
    locked him up!! Funny thing is Austrians are
    saying they are no longer Nazis and aim to prove
    it by burning books, banning books and ideas,
    banning free speech, and locking up historians
    and writers they disagree with. Oh wait, that’s
    exactly the same as the Nazis isn’t it?? Kind
    of ridiculous………….!!

  13. So what about that terrorism-preaching cleric in the UK? Does he get free speech too?

  14. In reference to the “Galileo moment,” does anyone really know where Irving stands in the neo-Nazi movement? I mean, I appreciate that some figures become martyrs, increased in stature by spending time in prison. But others are just forgotten. Is there any reason to believe Irving will be of the former type rather than the latter? If Irving cannot “work the circuit” of neo-Nazi sympathizers I’m sure some other author will. Believing otherwise is to fall into the “lump of idiocy” fallacy.

    Anon

  15. I just looked at his website (fpp.co.uk) and intend to buy his book to find out what this is all about, he must have been onto something, or they wouldn’t have locked him up!!

    Oh boy… just like rotting meat draws flies, holocaust denial draws the Nazis.

  16. So what about that terrorism-preaching cleric in the UK? Does he get free speech too?

    Like it or not, yes.

  17. Send Western Europe a copy of On Liberty:

    Strange it is, that men should admit the validity of the arguments for free discussion, but object to their being “pushed to an extreme;” not seeing that unless the reasons are good for an extreme case, they are not good for any case. Strange that they should imagine that they are not assuming infallibility, when they acknowledge that there should be free discussion on all subjects which can possibly be doubtful, but think that some particular principle or doctrine should be forbidden to be questioned because it is so certain, that is, because they are certain that it is certain. To call any proposition certain, while there is any one who would deny its certainty if permitted, but who is not permitted, is to assume that we ourselves, and those who agree with us, are the judges of certainty, and judges without hearing the other side. – John Stuart Mill

  18. eyeresist,

    I’m pretty sure the UK’s laws on the subject are more strict, but in the US, even violence-inciting speech is protected, unless the speech creates an immediate danger to public safety, leaving no time for it to be rebutted.

  19. Tell me, how much jail time do the Europeans prescribe for one who denies the Armenian massacre in Turkey? What is the punishment in Belgium for denying the million dead Congolese?

    Do the British plan to lock up Ann Coulter for declaring that the Muslim nations should be forcibly converted to Christianity?

    It’s not suprising that the Western nations, having discovered an excuse to manipulate every other market, have now decided to “rationalize” the marketplace of ideas.

  20. “I am not a Holocaust denier. My views have changed,”

    See, he’s not a Holocaust denier. He’s a Holocaust acceptance procrastinator.

    Needless to say, neither one should be illegal.

  21. Is there any reason to believe Irving will be of the former type rather than the latter?

    The cruel and perverse nature of the universe.

  22. Tell me, how much jail time do the Europeans prescribe for one who denies the Armenian massacre in Turkey? What is the punishment in Belgium for denying the million dead Congolese?…Do the British plan to lock up Ann Coulter for declaring that the Muslim nations should be forcibly converted to Christianity?

    Not to mention the Ukrainian, Chinese and Cambodian holocausts that are denied or minimized on college campuses here (and I would imagine, in Europe) on a near-daily basis.

  23. I despise the “sure he’s a slimeball, but everyone gets free speech” responses.

    There are no “buts” here. Irving’s slimeballiness is the height of irrelevancy and the only point I can see to bringing it up is to try and make it slightly relevant. It ain’t. Whether he was denying the Holocaust or denying Global Warming, it is truly scary that he can get a three year prison term in supposedly enlightened Europe. Austria has a bucketful of nerve getting on Arnold for not pardoning murderers on death row and then jailing someone for saying something they don’t like.

    Locking up Julian Sanchez or Tim Cavanaugh for what they say is no worse than locking up Irving for what he says. It’s worth remembering how quickly any one of us can wind up with a minority view. Is Bjorn Lomborg next? Irving deserves 100% of our support. Anything less, any minced words, is completely unacceptable from anyone who choose to call themselves a libertarian, IMO.

  24. For better or worse, Holocaust denial is a crime in Austria (and Germany) and I can only assume that Irving was aware of this. It may not be an ideal situation to have such a law, but it is a damn sight better than the state-assisted denial of the Chinese massacres by Japan, for example. I can only assume that in view of Germany’s and Austria’s particular involvement in the Holocaust, they believed that it would be dangerous to make it look like the state denies responsibility for its recent, incredibly bloody history. For that alone, I respect the spirit of this law.

    That aside, whether or not Irving agreed with it, he should have respected the law of the country and behaved accordingly.

  25. “That aside, whether or not Irving agreed with it, he should have respected the law of the country and behaved accordingly.”

    I assume that goes for Rosa Parks as well?

  26. In other news, O.J. Simpson discovered who had killed his ex-wife, too.

  27. CaptVee: We can be opposed to him being punished merely for his beliefs, even as we vociferously disapprove of his beliefs. That is the height of what being a libertarian is about.

  28. “CaptVee: We can be opposed to him being punished merely for his beliefs, even as we vociferously disapprove of his beliefs. That is the height of what being a libertarian is about.”

    Except doing so tends to create a hierarchy of wrongs based on who is being wronged, instead of where it should be focused: the seriousness of the wrong. In this particular case, the seriousness of the wrong is so grievous it makes whatever he happens to believe in, completely irrelevant. He said something folks don’t like and now he’s in prison. Period. The validity of what he said is completely irrelevant to the story.

    The height of libertarianism is to protest what someone says without sending their asses to prison. Once the latter happens, the former is of little consequence.

  29. …Of course it shoulda been: A purpose of the freedom of speech is to protect speech that we don’t like, not *just* speech that we like.

    Preview button, why do I forsake thee?

  30. CaptVee:

    I think the point of people here calling Irving a slimeball is to counter the anticipated response that support of his free speech rights may be based on veiled support or apologism for what he said. You clearly know that it’s not and the rest of us here do too, but do “they”? That said, you are correct to say that the key issue is that what he said is irrelevant to his right to say it.

    So of course we all agree that this is an open and shut case of injustice. But what do folks here think about the Imam (sp?) in England who got jailed for inciting violence? I’m less sure what I think about that.

  31. Am I the only one who read that “Australia” at first and thought, “Hey, when did the Ozzies get so uptight about the Holocaust?”

  32. But what do folks here think about the Imam (sp?) in England who got jailed for inciting violence? I’m less sure what I think about that.

    Well, the motive for jailing both of them is more or less the same: Germany and Austria, I believe, treat Holocaust denial as incitement to violence. Which is not to say that’s the way it should be treated, or that incitement to violence should be punished with jail time, but the legal justification is not just that somebody finds his speech offensive, and obviously Germany and Austria are special cases. To be clear, I don’t think Holocaust denial should be treated as incitement to violence; I think incitement to violence should either not be prosecutable or so narrowly defined that it could never be applied in a case like this; and in fact I’m not sure why CaptVee is mad at me.

  33. Could the Austrians have made a case for fraud? Presumably that would have been a lot more arduous for them. They would have had to prove to whatever extent their law requires that the Holocaust occurred, substantially as Irving denied it.

    I would have liked that a lot better.

    David Irving has been peddling pernicious lies for long enough, and he should be horse-whipped for it. But supressing his speech in this manner is wrong. Someone should have sued the living shit out of him.

    Presumably they tried that already.

  34. Although it’s hard to say exactly what damages Irving should be sued for. The royalties from his books and his honoraria? “Caveat emptor” is a good counter argument. Maybe it’s important that the coercive power of the law not meddle with David Irving’s twisted beliefs and activities. But I still would love to see him horse-whipped.

  35. While I don’t agree with the practice of imprisoning a lying little nazi scumbag for what he *says*, I will point out a reason why German and Austria are willing to do so.

    Realize, that the Nazis caused vast destruction to these countries, and that these laws were part of their de-nazification program which they adopted right after the war. They are far more sensitive to the hazard of a resurgent nazi movement, because frankly, it’s a far more plausible danger in their eyes than it is in ours.

    -jcr

  36. I think the immam guy in England, Abu-al-Hamza was different because his sentance (7 years) was under a variety of offences, the most important of which was (I think) acts preparatory to terrorism. He had all sorts of bombing materials and explosives at his ‘HQ’ and this evidence compounded the crap he was talking.

    Still, for what it’s worth, I didn’t think he should have been imprisoned. He should have been deported. I would have gladly waved him off.

  37. Im glad to see everyone in agreement over David Irving’s right to spout idiocy. I wonder if all you folks leapt to Chomsky’s defense when he was one of the first to defend this guy.

  38. Matt-

    We would all agree (I hope?) that Chomsky should not be imprisoned for anything that he says.

    And I think it’s fine to say that we oppose his views in the same sentence that we use to defend his rights. It demonstrates that we accept a key freedom: The freedom to be wrong.

  39. Also, it demonstrates that we see free speech as a way to deal with disagreement.

  40. It’s hard to imagine a defense for locking up a man for having ideas, wrong though they may be. Shame on Austria (and Germany, Canada, and all other nations who enact and enforce such illiberal laws).

  41. Thoreau,

    didnt mean to imply a defense of Irving or Chomsky meant blanket agreement, rather to point out that Chomsky’s defense of Irving became an irresistable club to many of his detractors with which to beat him. Was everyone here principled enough to refrain? Probably.

  42. Nothing repudiates fascism like locking up dissenters.

  43. R C nails it.

  44. Tim,

    You’re right that incitement to violence is the justification for the holocaust-denial laws, but you don’t answer my question! (Not that you’re obligated to, but, you didn’t! 🙂 Mark comes closer, but I don’t think the conspiracy to commit terrorism was all the immam was convicted of. And besides, when has possession of weapons been considered an actionable offense in these parts? (Whether the action is imprisonment or deportation, I don’t think necessarily matters.) But back to what Tim said, that they would take such a leap from disputing the holocaust to inciting violence that hasn’t even happened (hell, his “denial” was what, 11 years ago?) kind of reminds me of joe’s justification for hate crime laws, which actually was the best defense for such laws I had ever heard. He said they amounted to harrassment of third parties since their point was to “make an example.” My reply was, well prove in court they were intending to do that, to harrass third parties by setting an example, and you may very well have a case. But that clearly goes further than merely demonstrating bigotry.

  45. I can only assume that in view of Germany’s and Austria’s particular involvement in the Holocaust, they believed that it would be dangerous to make it look like the state denies responsibility for its recent, incredibly bloody history.

    Exactly. Americans don’t have a particularly good grasp of just how sensitive this issue is there (for obvious reasons). Granted, I too believe the law is wrong — but imagine the howls of outrage if it’s ever repealed.

  46. Now there’s nothing to stop them from jailing all the Jesus deniers.

  47. It may not be an ideal situation to have such a law, but it is a damn sight better than the state-assisted denial of the Chinese massacres by Japan, for example.

    Unless the Japanese put people in jail for pointing out that Japan was guilty of atrocities, no it’s *not* a damn sight better.

    I’ve spoken to Europeans about the laws regarding “hate speech” and they usually support them by saying that “there are still virulent anti-semite sentiments in Europe and we don’t want to give them power by allowing them a forum.”

    Similarly, Germany, Austria, and the other European countries that experienced Communism and Soviet occupation realize that there are virulent pro-Communists out there and therefore have laws that ban the display of Communist emblems or the attempted minimization of the crimes of Communism. No, wait, . . .

  48. but imagine the howls of outrage if it’s ever repealed.

    Agreed. But aside from the obvious point that sometimes you have to put up with the howls of those in the wrong to do what’s right, there’s still the question of enforcement. On another thread it’s been pointed out that there’s multitudes of dumb laws on the books. Sometimes laws get repealed in effect by simply being ignored. But if maybe, maybe, there’s ever a good time to enforce this law, like when someone couples holocaust denial with real incitements to violence or calls for a new fascist revolution, that certainly was not the case here.

  49. So I guess we can all agree that Austria (and Germany) aren’t the libertarian paradises that nobody expected them to be anyway. But ridiculous hyperbole like “now they’re gonna jail Jesus deniers” is a little uncalled for, since these laws have been in effect for around 60 years and as far as I know, no Jesus deniers have been jailed. Yes, the laws should be repealed, but they only exist because of the rather extreme stuff that happened in their past. As far as “hate speech” is concerned, Europe is only slightly farther down that road than the US is, so slippery-slope arguments aren’t very convincing to me.

  50. As far as “hate speech” is concerned, Europe is only slightly farther down that road than the US is…

    What? You’ll have to back that one up. The barbaric behavior of the Austrian government in prosecuting a point of view would be in direct violation of our Constitution here is the US.

  51. Irving says he discovered “new evidence” in 1992 confirming the existence of the Holocaust. Evidently he forgot to tell the guys in charge of his website (fpp.co.uk), because there’s plenty of “Holocaust revisionist” material on there – including responses to high school students who wrote him letters about it.

    Like his beloved Nazis, who tried to save their skin by saying they were only following orders, Irving repudiated his entire legacy (such as it is) the minute his liberty was at stake. Pathetic.

  52. What? You’ll have to back that one up.

    I back it up by pointing out that this law applies in two countries to one very specific speech act. I’m not saying it’s right, I’m just trying to bring some perspective.

  53. Irving repudiated his entire legacy (such as it is) the minute his liberty was at stake. Pathetic.

    What’s more pathetic is that his liberty was ever put at stake.

  54. With Regards to Chomsky above, I think people are mixing up Irving with Robert Faurisson. I’m unaware of any writings by Chomsky defending Irving.

  55. (Affecting Colonel Klink accent:) “You vill haff no problems in Austria as long as your papers are in order and you do not say things that ve do not like.”

    Ok, that was lame, but it’s Monday, so what do you expect. Oh, it’s Tuesday? Goddamnit!

  56. so slippery-slope arguments aren’t very convincing to me

    “Slippery slope denier”, are ya? If people are legally allowed to deny the existence of the slippery slope, who knows what else they might deny later on down the line?

  57. If people are legally allowed to deny the existence of the slippery slope, who knows what else they might deny later on down the line?

    I dunno… Godwin’s law?

  58. nonsequitor worm,

    “Now there’s nothing to stop them from jailing all the Jesus deniers.”

    Oh, those wacky christians! Please.

  59. Although I have my doubts if Irving’s case was decided correctly, I think that Austria’s laws in that direction make some sense.
    Right after the war, Nazi party and affiliates were considered criminal organisations – which, looking at history seems fairly reasonable.
    Hence any effort to re-establish Nazi organizations is legitimably criminalized: Trying to establish them therefore is therefore as plitical and as protected as establishing a common gang to e.g rob banks. The main law – which Irving ran afoul of – is called “Wiederbetaetigungsgesetz” (i.e. “wieder betaetigung” = doing it again!).
    From an american perspective, this law may sound stiflig and unnecessary. After 10 years in the US, I have my doubts, too.
    But I still recall – in Austria – people dressing up on April 20.

  60. Although I have my doubts if Irving’s case was decided correctly, I think that Austria’s laws in that direction make some sense.
    Right after the war, Nazi party and affiliates were considered criminal organisations – which, looking at history seems fairly reasonable.
    Hence any effort to re-establish Nazi organizations is legitimably criminalized: Trying to establish them therefore is therefore as plitical and as protected as establishing a common gang to e.g rob banks. The main law – which Irving ran afoul of – is called “Wiederbetaetigungsgesetz” (i.e. “wieder betaetigung” = doing it again!).
    From an american perspective, this law may sound stiflig and unnecessary. After 10 years in the US, I have my doubts, too.
    But I still recall – in Austria – people dressing up on April 20.

  61. We, in the United States, tend to take freedom of speech for granted due to the First Amendment and all of the groups that defend it to the nth degree. (I wish they would do the same for the Second Amendment 🙂 ).

    The truth of the matter is that “freedom of speech” doesn’t have the same protections in other countries. We tend to think that European countries have the same laws and rights as Americans, but that is not true. Search and seizure laws are quite different and Miranda warnings only appear on American TV shows. It’s entirely legal for any European country to ban any type of speech or symbols they dislike (e.g. head scarves) if they perceive it as a threat. This serves as a good reminder of why some Founding Fathers pressed for the Bill of Rights to be added to the Constitution. It isn’t forever unless it’s unalienable!

  62. Tim,

    I’m not angry with you, it’s just that it is striking to me how much time the opinions of the other side are getting on this issue here relative to other issues (NSA program, Drug War, subsidies, etc.)

    This isn’t just about principle. Mr. Irving is 100% a victim of oppressive government. And arguments that downplay the fact that he is such a victim I think hurts the necessary message of, “no, no, no, no, a thousand times no” that needs to be gotten across here. I mean the freedom to speak your mind is the mother of all civil liberties (_1st_ ammendment and all), and you can understand how upset someone might be to hear something so fundamentally basic to _all_ libertarian thought be met with hems and haws and weasel words.

    There really isn’t any “slippery slope” here. This is the feared outcome of “slippery slope” arguments. A man says he thinks the number of Jews killed in concentration camps has been exaggerated, and he goes to jail for it. Anyone not disturbed by it can scarcely call themselves a libertarian IMO.

  63. I don’t like Holocaust denial and “revisionism,” but I am more bothered by laws forbidding the expression of unpopular opinions. There is no danger that a majority of people will believe the idiots who deny the Holocaust. Irving has no chance of influencing anyone except the fools who already hold Stormfront or Aryan Brotherhood membership cards, and airing his ignorance just helps to demonstrate how deeply ignorant the anti-Semitic right is. I would rather have him in public speaking up.

  64. Rick Barton-I’ve been reading here for a few years now. You’ve been accused of Antisemitism at times before when you’ve attacked Israel. You always refute the accusations and jump on the accusers. Often many of the regulars here come to your defense too. I always thought those accusations were definatley wrong but I have a question from the opposite direction. Since you seem to know more about Israel than anyone else here-Are you Jewish?

  65. I find it puzzling that: there are some who think there’s no “slippery slope” here to worry about; that just because denying the Holocaust is justifiable grounds for a three year prison term, there’s no reason why denying any other thing on earth could ever lead to the same. This must mean that Holocaust denial, and ONLY Holocaust denial, possesses such a unique destructive force that no other thought or belief could ever even in theory duplicate, that it’s adherents must be jailed for the public good. But that no other belief of any kind, now or in the future, could also become a jailable offense. It’s only this one thing, and that’s all. Honest. No “mission creep”, no slippery slope to worry about at all. Ever.

    And the reason such a law is useful is: banning thoughts of holocaust denial will apparently prevent Austria from tumbling down the “slippery slope” that inevitably leads from “Holocaust denial” to violence and discrimination towards Jews, and the ultimate re-formation of the Nazi party.

  66. “I find it puzzling that: there are some who think there’s no “slippery slope” here to worry about”

    I don’t think there’s a slippery slope here. A slippery slope leads to something very bad. This thing is already there. This guy being in jail is a grievous injustice, holocaust denier or not.

  67. Gavin,

    I’m not Jewish, ethnically or religiously. For the record, I have no religious faith and harbor only questions and not answers concerning points of religious cosmology. I also have a foundational belief that others have an unalienable right to practice, or not practice, their religion, and any other activity for that matter, in whatever non-coercive manner that they desire.

    My criticisms are not of the whole country but rather the Israeli government and of the fundamentalist Jewish religious wack-jobs that poison Israeli polity. I’m afraid that my knowledge of Israel is rather of a narrower nature than your comment would indicate. I’ve found the following volumes and three authors to be very strong:

    Jewish History, Jewish Religion: The Weight of Three Thousand Years

    by Professor Israel Shahak

    http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/jewhis1.htm

    (Make nothing of my linking to biblebelievers.org
    It’s just a place where the whole text of this extraordinary book is available.)

    Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict, New and Revised Edition

    Norman Finkelstein

    Best book on the conflict! Finkelstein is a critical and meticulous scholar. Here is his site. Dig it:

    http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/article.php?
    pg=11&ar=67

    I’ve never read anything by him that wasn’t strong.

    Blaming the Victims: Spurious Scholarship and the Palestinian Question

    The Question of Palestine

    Edward Said

    I once saw Said debate a defender if the Israeli government. If it had been a boxing match, Said’s opponent woulda been taken out on a stretcher. Said knew the history and contemporary events!

  68. And Rick Barton gets the coveted “post # 69” award! (Which I also just gave out at the “Fruit of Islam” thread, where it, frankly, was more meaningful.)

  69. Thank you, Stevo! Yeah Baby! (Read in Austin Powers accent)

  70. denying the Holocaust is justifiable grounds for a three year prison term, there’s no reason why denying any other thing on earth could ever lead to the same.

    Wrong on two counts! It begs the question by making the unsubstantiated assertion that denying the Holocaust should be a crime. Second, the neoNazis also dig racist theories. The authoritarian rational that criminalizes Holocaust denial could also criminalize theories of Arian racial superiority.

    …that its adherents must be jailed for the public good.

    Said the Nazi and many totalitarians thru history!

    And the reason such a law is useful is: banning thoughts of holocaust denial will apparently prevent Austria from tumbling down (to Nazism)

    What nonsense! It’s impossible to make that forecast. And it’s this law that certainly makes Austria de-facto more Nazi like. Lastly, independent worm needs to ruminate on R C Dean’s comment at 09:50 AM before he concludes that punishing a point of view will squelch NeoNazi popularity. Not that the free speech restriction would be justified, even if it did.

  71. My last post was in response to independent worm’s
    10:24 PM comment.

  72. Rick,

    I believe Independant Worm was being sarcastic with that comment.

    Independant worm,

    You are absolutely right about the slippery slope. Perhaps I didn’t read carefully all of the posts, but has anyone here really defended this law? Doubtful. I was responding more to your choice of villians than anything else.

  73. Rick Barton,

    Are you mentally retarded, or do you just not know how to read? The entire thing was prefaced with “I find it puzzling that there are some who think…

  74. Rick Barton references Jewish critics of Israel such as Israel Shahak and Norman Finkelstein, but the neo-Nazi conspiracy theories he pushes don’t have anything to do with those writers. Don’t be fooled.

  75. I mean the freedom to speak your mind is the mother of all civil liberties (_1st_ ammendment and all), and you can understand how upset someone might be to hear something so fundamentally basic to _all_ libertarian thought be met with hems and haws and weasel words.

    Capt Vee, once again, only maybe more strongly this time, the fact that we DISAGREE with this guy and think lowly of him does NOT constitute hemming and hawing or weaseling on the validity of his 1st Amendment rights but, quite TO THE CONTRARY, only REINFORCES the fact that our support for his rights is based on recognition of his 1st Amendment rights ONLY and is not to be confused with support for his actual content.

    If you continue to fail to understand this, I wash my hands of your failure for I have tried my best to explain it to you.

  76. Jack,

    Can you show me where Rick Barton pushed a neo-Nazi conspiracy theory?

  77. wellfellow, independent worm,

    My bad. I cut and paste independent worm’s comment into a tenp file sans the start of it and then analyzed it from there! Now, please consider my comments a continuation of independent worm’s critique. My apologies to you, independent worm. I kinda thought that those comments didn’t sound like you.

  78. Jack,

    Read my comment at February 21, 2006 11:23 AM and you will see how absurd the insinuation of your comment is.

  79. Jack:

    maybe we can break it down for you a little more.

    open your nawga-hide copy of “Heather Has Two Mommies”, get on yer assless chaps, and.. aw hell. fergetit. anybody that stupid to insult Rick that way isn’t worth it. although the “you don’t know jack” kinda would be funny here.

    Fyodor: good call. 🙂

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