Wednesday, June 23, 2004

More on Moore

Cheers to David for posting Hitchens thrashing of Michael Moore. One particularly wonderful quote is from Orwell, who Hitchens has studied quite a bit. Moore, the idiot that he is, ends his movie quoting Orwell from 1984, in order to make the point "that there is no moral distinction between the United States, the Taliban, and the Baath Party and that the war against jihad is about nothing." But it shows the shallowness of Moore that he knows not who he is quoting and what Orwell was really talking about. Hitchens, the Orwellian scholar, delivers the following Orwell quote, which is so appropriate today, it is almost scary:
"The majority of pacifists either belong to obscure religious sects or are simply humanitarians who object to taking life and prefer not to follow their thoughts beyond that point. But there is a minority of intellectual pacifists, whose real though unacknowledged motive appears to be hatred of western democracy and admiration for totalitarianism. Pacifist propaganda usually boils down to saying that one side is as bad as the other, but if one looks closely at the writing of the younger intellectual pacifists, one finds that they do not by any means express impartial disapproval but are directed almost entirely against Britain and the United States …"

As Hitchens goes on to conclude in his own voice, "it's highly unwise to quote Orwell if you are already way out of your depth on the question of moral equivalence. It's also incautious to remind people of Orwell if you are engaged in a sophomoric celluloid rewriting of recent history."

This battle against facism (or should I say, illiberalism) and its enablers has been going on a long time, and it has taken and is taking many shapes. I think it will go on for some time to come.


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