No, Laura Ingraham did not give a Nazi salute at the GOP convention

Jebus, is the Left becoming as fond of conspiracy theories as the right? This photo (and gifs) of conservative author and radio host Laura Ingraham, waving to the crowd after her speech at the Republican convention, are all over my Facebook page, with some posters seriously suggesting that she’s giving a Hitler salute.  (I really should stop going to FB.) When I said, “People, it’s just the beginning of a wave—she’s not giving the Nazi salute!”, I was contradicted by some who said it’s just too strange to be a real wave.

Slate, for example, posted this, without giving the video (click on screenshot for link):

Screen Shot 2016-07-22 at 8.00.18 AM

Here’s a video of her entrance to the stage and then her final wave. Note her stiff-armed wave as she walks onto the stage at the beginning, and then her final salutations (including the “Nazi salute”) at 2:48. She’s just an awkward waver, for crying out loud!

Come on, people! That stiff-armed bit was just the beginning of a general wave to the crowd. Do you really think that Ingraham, conservative as she is, would covertly give a sign of sympathy to Hitler? Are we so mired in hatred of Republicans that we’ll even entertain conspiracy theories like this?

Ingraham is odious enough without us making fools of ourselves by suggesting she’s a Nazi sympathizer. That makes us akin to creationists: we take one bit of a wave out of context; creationists take a few words out of context from the writings of evolutionists.

95 Comments

  1. PeteO
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    Thank you!!! I expect this kind of drivel from my right wing friends but expect better from my supposedly more enlightened lefties!

  2. Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    Well said, Jerry. This kind of thing drives me nuts. We’re supposed to be the party of reason, but so often I see a lack of even basic fairness and intellectual honesty toward our opponents (don’t even start me on how heretics, or people who are somehow impure, within our own ranks get treated).

    I’ll fess up that I’d never heard of this woman, but she’s clearly not giving a Nazi salute in the video footage. If she is truly odious and/or incompetent, I’m sure that could be demonstrated in some honest, fair way. But how on earth we are supposed to demonstrate to right-wing opponents that we are the reasonable ones as long as this keeps happening?

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:30 am | Permalink

      Er, that should be “[…] how on earth are we supposed to” but I’m sure my drift is clear!

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

      Ah, to be you — never to have heard Laura Ingraham, or even to have heard of her. How I envy such a charmed existence!

      Having now partaken of it, however, you’re cast from that Garden for good.

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

      What Ken said. Next you’ll tell me you’ve never heard of Denis Prager, Michael Medved, or Hugh Hewitt. Oh, the things they say.

      • Posted July 23, 2016 at 3:41 am | Permalink

        I’m aware of Prager and Medved, but I have no idea who Hugh Hewitt is. If you said that name here in Australia, people would assume he is some obscure relative of Lleyton Hewitt (who is treated as a superstar in this country).

        The point is that someone who is famous in one country can be unknown in another. Indeed, someone who is famous in one *state* can be unknown, or at least obscure, in another. I was surprised recently to find that my father had not heard of Derryn Hinch – an incredibly famous and dominant radio personality/shock jock in Melbourne (where I lived for 30 years). Hinch has just been elected to the federal Senate, representing the State of Victoria. But in NSW, and only 500 or 600 miles from his home base, he is almost off the radar.

        • Posted July 23, 2016 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

          Oh, my comment was certainly not meant to imply that one should know who those people are. I don’t think I could name one Australian pundit.

  3. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    This is how you do the Hitler salute –

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-3niu3HgCg

    cr

    • Rupinder Sayal
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      Haha! Good demonstration and hilarious stand up by Ricky Gervais

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

      Comedy about the Holocaust that works. He’s a comedic genius.

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted July 23, 2016 at 1:52 am | Permalink

        Indeed, Gervais is one of the very few non-Jews who could get away with it. Simply because he’s known for his high-risk comedy so the Hitler sketch is in character.

        cr

  4. Eric Grobler
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    Thank you for highlighting the insanity on both sides of the political spectrum and upholding the principle of objectivity.

    It is really sad as an outsider to see how childish and irrational the political discourse in the US has become.

    Everything is gossip and ad hominem, what happened to debating actual policy issues?

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      Actually, it is worse. Very few ad hominems at all, from what I can see. I don’t see many “Don’t vote for X because he’s an idiot.” If, however, one can demonstrate that X is an idiot, then presumably (since some intelligence should be required for politicians, I’d think) that’s a *non fallacious* ad hominem.

      I just see “X is an idiot”, which is an insult, not an ad hominem.

      • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

        Not always an insult. The word “idiot” must have some actual, tangible referent. I’d say it’s much more likely that you’ll find one on the right than on th left.

  5. Randall Schenck
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    I could only stand to watch the video without the sound. Maybe this is just reflections of Dr. Strangelove? Did not see any of the republican show this week but from the reviews it seems more like a comedy.

  6. Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    The “Trump is the second-coming of Hitler” meme is definitely over the top. Mussolini, maybe.

    • Mike C
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:47 am | Permalink

      more likely: Putin

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:13 pm | Permalink

      The level of “us vs. them” rhetoric that Trump constantly emits and which Republcans in general seem to lap up is, it seems to me, at least somewhere between Mussolini and Hitler. I’m not trying to be humorous. The speeches I’ve seen from the RNC have been deeply concerning.

  7. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    You can also google for Obama giving the Nazi salute and get plenty of hits. I bet one can find pix of cats giving the ‘ol stiff-arm wave.

    • darrelle
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      Remember the poor sod from a while back who was excoriated for teaching his girlfriend’s cat to give the Nazi salute and posting video of it?

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

        One can never get enough of cats doing offensive semaphore.

    • Taz
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      I don’t know about the Nazi salute, but according to the right-wing he’s constantly giving some sort of secret Muslim high sign.

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

      This finger-pointing may force the poor politicians to give speeches with hands tied behind.

  8. Rupinder Sayal
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    I was one of those posted this on FB. I stand corrected. Would have been better if I had watched the video first. Thanks for pointing this out.

  9. Eric Grobler
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    I wonder if Americans realize how kitsch and nauseating extrovert the presidential campaign look to us in the Roman Providences.
    Worse is that it produces such terrible candidates lately. (compare with British Prime ministers)

    I suggest the following remedy:
    * ban party conventions
    * subject all candidates to an IQ test (Trump eliminated)
    * if you had family members as close as second cousins that served as President you are barred (Clinton, Bush eliminated)
    * You have to know the difference between Sunni and Shia and point to France on the map (Bush II eliminated)
    * Most importantly, you have to appear on the Joe Rogan show for 3 hours and then survive an interview by Neil deGrasse Tyson.

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

      + 1

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

      If you think Trump would be eliminated by an IQ test, you are underestimating the enemy. Like many demagogues, Trump has above average IQ by most accounts.

      • Eric Grobler
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

        We can set the bar to 130. At most he is 120.

        • Posted July 22, 2016 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

          That would knock out most of the Republican field, except the odious but smart Ted Cruz.

    • Filippo
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

      ” . . . survive an interview by Neil deGrasse Tyson.”

      With your hearing intact.

      • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

        Tyson is not the hard-nosed reality-affirming personality I’d have suggested. I’d have suggested someone more like, well, like Jerry Coyne.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

      Let us Yanks know when you tire of paying tribute to Rome …

    • Jeremy Tarone
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

      So Hillary can’t be president because she married Bill Clinton?
      Hillary is an actual separate person, with her own brain, personality and ideas.
      She’s not just an extension of her husband.
      I see no reason for excluding a person because of who they happened to marry or which vagina they popped out of. It seems to me this would exclude otherwise good people for no sensible reason, people who should be judged on their own merit, or lack thereof, not on their relatives past accomplishments.

      • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

        I agree, although I can sympathize with Eric’s obvious intention of eliminating nepotism.

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

      Providences?

  10. Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Of course, you are correct but. . . https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Oz8RjPAD2Jk

  11. Randall Schenck
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    The proper comparison of the republican party and agenda to the nazi or a fascist government is the ideology. Fascism believes that liberal democracy is obsolete and preparation for armed conflict is necessary. Desperate times call for extreme measures because the enemy is all around us. Just as in Trump’s speech, there is a lot of I and gloom and doom but not much we and no mention of hope.

    • Linn
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      The problem I see with all the pictures and videos of these conventions, isn’t the waving. It’s the creepy posters and signs with “Make America great again”. I’m probably overreacting, but I get chills down my spine at it.
      I still wonder which time period they seek to restore. How many years or centuries do they want to set the clock back?

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:57 am | Permalink

        Which period is the question. Problem is, their vision of history is so delusional it really doesn’t matter. If they could take the indoor plumbing and electricity with them, maybe back to before the civil war.

    • Eric Grobler
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:57 am | Permalink

      Playing Devil’s advocate, there are many libertarians who argue that liberal democracy is also under threat from the radical left.

      I for example believe in liberal democracy but is very concerned with the islamization of Europe. Many people will call me fascist.

      Trump is an odious person and might or might not be a Mussolini character when in power (not worth the risk voting for him).

      If a “normal” republican candidate (like Jeb) had similar policies (stop uncontrolled Mexican immigration, moratorium on Muslim immigration), in what sense is it comparable to Nazi ideology? (I suppose you view contemporary Japan and Korea über Nazi)

      preparation for armed conflict is necessary.
      That would make the US fascist during the Cold War.

      One could argue that the US has some fascist characteristics since the 1950’s including today.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        And we could just look up fascism on google and see how the various experts describe it and then just look at the republican party. Who they end up with as their candidate is not that important maybe. The foundation is well laid.

      • Posted July 22, 2016 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

        + 1

  12. Somite
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    If I was a white supremacist I would have appreciated the salute.

    It’s not like Trump has a penchant for retweeeting white supremacists and has a history of racism.

  13. Posted July 22, 2016 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Yes exactly. Plus you just have to think for a second to realize that a) the Nazi salute isn’t imbued with authoritarianism as such, it is just culturally what they used in 1930 Germany, and, b) the last thing she or Trump would want to do is draw attention to their fascist tendencies by such a childish ploy.

    • Alpha Neil
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      Are you suggesting that the hitler salute was just a cultural fad like a fist bump or high five? Failure to salute resulted in savage beatings, even for foreigners. Can’t get much more authoritarian than that.

      Regarding point b, they are not concerned about how authoritarian they look. They are self-obsessed not self-aware.

      • Geoffrey Howe
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

        If you got the crap beaten out of you for not doing the Macarena, that doesn’t mean the Macarena is a facist dance. It just means that facists are policing what dances you can and can’t do.

        That Nazi Salute may have just been a normal regular everyday salute, and the Nazis demanded salutes from everyone, and so that regular salute became the nazi salute. It would have had no negative connotations before that. At least, that’s what I think the OP is saying.

        • Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

          Aneela was trying to suggest that a person today giving that salute can’t necessarily be connected with Nazism because at the time it was simply an accident that the raised right arm was what the Nazis glommed onto.

          This argument is rank bullshit. The fact that it is historically associated with the Nazis means that people who use it today are invoking the Nazis. Period. Don’t give me bs about how it’s just an arm movement.

          That writ, I agree with Jerry that she was not giving the “Nazi salute”.

          • infiniteimprobabilit
            Posted July 23, 2016 at 2:07 am | Permalink

            But see darrelle’s comment on what Aneela may have meant (below).

            My take is that the Nazi salute is no more inherently authoritarian than any other salute, and much less so than the clenched-fist Black Power salute, it’s just the fact that Nazis used it makes it seem that way.
            Ditto the goose-step which IIRC was used by the Greeks long before Nazism.

            And the Swastika was and is a widespread ‘good fortune’ symbol in India and environs, in fact I saw a Bollywood movie made by ‘Swastik Productions’ that, needless to say, was just typical Bollywood and showed no fascist tendencies that I could discern.

            (I recognise that anyone using the ‘Hitler salute’ now must be aware of the Nazi associations.)

            cr

      • darrelle
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

        I think what Aneela meant is that the Nazi salute was not invented by the Nazi’s but rather that it was appropriated by them, that the gesture or one very like it was already common in German culture prior to the rise of the Nazis.

        I don’t know if that actually was the case but that is what I think Aneela meant.

  14. Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    NSDAP pareidolia. There are plenty of other aspects regarding Ms. Ingraham’s enthusiasm that should be deeply worrying.

  15. Leigh
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    I agree that the wave was just a wave and not worth mentioning. The drift of the Republican Party into fascist territory and white supremacy is worth discussing. The displays of open racism at the convention are worth discussing, as is a hatred of women and the LGBTQ community so entrenched it is the party platform. The demands made by elected Republicans for a Constitution and laws that are subservient to ‘gods law’ are worth discussing. I agree. We should not be distracted by trivial gestures when we need to focus on the serious issues raised by this convention.

    I will be voting for Hillary Clinton, but I will also be working on the campaign, donating my time and money, and doing everything I can to make sure Trump is not elected. I will also be working for every sane down-ballot candidate and issue. I hope all you all will be doing the same. I think the real problem raised here is complacency.

    • Mark R.
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

      Yes, complacency is our enemy. Though I’ve also heard the Bernie or Bust people say they are voting for Tr*mp just to watch him burn the whole thing down. I guess they feel another 4 or 8 years similar to Obama’s will be worse than 4 more Scalias on SCOTUS, the threat of Total War, an army of authoritarian deporting police, and according to most economists the largest deficit in history. Trickle down economics has proven to be so great dontcha know, we need to do even more of it. I have no respect for the Bernie supporters who harbor these destructive tendencies.

      If Trump does win, I’ll never trust the U.S. electorate again and I think major cynicism will infect my mind.

      I’ll be fighting too! Thanks for your contributions in defeating this clear and present danger.

      • Filippo
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        ” . . . an army of authoritarian deporting police….”

        In the spirit of agape and altruism, how about the U.S. having (another, as in 1986 – is that correct?) a general, absolute illegal immigration amnesty, no questions asked, and then setting in place reasonable and appropriate control of the borders, everybody following proper procedure, not feeling entitled to enter the U.S. surreptitiously? (Separate provisions for refugees escaping war, etc.)

        • Posted July 22, 2016 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

          Or, how about we recognize the xenophobic futility of “securing the borders” in the first place, and make the international borders no more of a big deal than the interstate borders? Enter California from Arizona and there might (or might not) be questions and or vehicle inspection to prevent importation of agricultural pests, but going the other direction there’s just a weigh station that’s usually closed.

          Get rid of the whole notion of work visas and the like. If you’re in the country and you want to work, you need a Social Security Number and have taxes deducted and all the rest — but there shouldn’t be any more bureaucratic bullshit for foreigners to put up with for that sort of thing than citizens.

          Citizenship should be required for active participation in government — voting, holding elected office, probably a fair number of unelected jobs. And it’s fine for citizenship to be a multi-year process that includes the equivalent of an high school level of education in American civics and history.

          The rest of this nonsense?

          It’s pure jingoism with very strong racist overtones.

          Here’s a quick litmus test. If you think it would be bizarre for, say, Texas to restrict migration of Oregonians across its border because of whatever reason, that reason is no more valid for the US to restrict migration of Mexicans.

          Cheers,

          b&

          >

          • Posted July 22, 2016 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

            If you see no difference between a country restricting immigration and a state restricting interstate migration, why do you still argue for requiring citizenship for civic participation and certain jobs? After all, Texas doesn’t require migrants from Oregon to undergo a multi year bureaucratic process and pass an exam on the history of Texas to work and vote in the state.

  16. Alpha Neil
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    This is how you do a proper salute

    • Richard
      Posted July 23, 2016 at 4:50 am | Permalink

      No, this is how!

      Apologies if this does not work, it is the first time I have tried to post a video link here.

  17. Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    Never mind the hand-waving…the textual content of her speech is terrifying enough. She trumpets American exceptionalism in the same jingoistic and xenophobic way as all other brutal authoritarian regimes in history have to justify their own atrocities. All this bluff and bluster about securing our borders and bringing a return to law and order and protecting our own first…pick any notorious regime past or present — Stalinist Russia, the Rwandan Hutu / Tutsi massacres, ISIS — and that’s exactly the language the authorities use to promote and excuse their actions.

    A Clinton administration would be quite bad for our country and the planet…but a Trump administration would be a complete and utter catastrophe. Just the mere fact that this is all so prevalent and unapologetic scares the shit out of me.

    b&

    • Eric Grobler
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      All this bluff and bluster about securing our borders and bringing a return to law and order and protecting our own first…pick any notorious regime past or present — Stalinist Russia, the Rwandan Hutu / Tutsi massacres, ISIS

      Please stop overreacting!
      Are you suggesting that no mainstream party in the history of democracy ever vowed to put the interests of it’s citizens first?
      It is perfectly normal for a democratic party to run on a ticket of law and order.
      I am not aware that Trump has a lebensraum policy, it sounds very isolationist to me.

      I hate the republicans too but to make repeated references to Hitler and Stalin is just idiotic.

      • nickswearsky
        Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:26 am | Permalink

        “I’ve heard this sort of speech a lot in the last 15 years and trust me, it doesn’t sound any better in Russian.” ‘Garry Kasparov (today).

        Certainly many a time a mainstream party has put the interests of it’s citizens first and foremost. But I cannot recall a speech or campaign that has shown such open admiration for the “Strongman” leader such as Putin. Trump also borrowed much from Nixon’s speeches, without as much respect for (or awareness of)constitutional limits that Nixon appeared to hold.

        So, yeah. Trump’s speech was different and scary.

        • Eric Grobler
          Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:33 am | Permalink

          Fair point, perhaps I am overreacting too.

          However you must agree that Putin is neither Hitler nor Stalin.

          Comparing Trump with Putin sounds fair enough.

          • Eric Grobler
            Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:56 am | Permalink

            Comparing Trump with Putin sounds fair enough.

            I have to retract, Trump is not nearly as talented or intelligent.

      • Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:28 am | Permalink

        I am not aware that Trump has a lebensraum policy, it sounds very isolationist to me.

        No; he just wants to build a wall along the border so he can keep all the dark-skinned rapist thugs away from the purity of our homeland.

        Some of the features of the Trump platform would be reasonable as oh-by-the-way bullet points of a larger social theory. But it’s the overwhelming emphasis given to “law and order” and isolationism coupled with Trump’s unabashed xenophobia and the overt racism of his supporters that should terrify you.

        b&

        >

        • Eric Grobler
          Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:44 am | Permalink

          No; he just wants to build a wall along the border so he can keep all the dark-skinned rapist thugs away from the purity of our homeland

          Fair enough, but that does not make him Hitler or Stalin.

          As an European I am worried about uncontrolled immigration from Morocco to Bangladesh into the EU because of cultural differences and the magnitude and scale makes in impossible to integrate the migrants/refugees and I do not regard myself as right wing.

          I am not familiar with the US situation but as a middle class person you are probably not effected by rapid immigration. If I was a working class black person, I would be very concerned.

          • Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:56 am | Permalink

            One should be concerned about the Mexicans (and Guatamalans, etc.) who are subject to the policies, and also it doesn’t follow from being concerned about the working class in the US that any policy whatever to seemingly help them is a good thing.

            I did see an early analysis of how Trump started the campaign – he correctly pointed out many many concerns of working and middle class Americans. Problem was that his proposed solutions were at best off the wall crazy. The author concluded, seemingly correctly, this explains some of his popularity – people who claim to have solutions to problems are often more popular than those refuse to acknowledge them. (This is why, in part, I call the two main parties in the US federal level “plutocratic” and “theocratic plutocratic”, since they are all about commerce, finance and business long before any other concern.)

            • Eric Grobler
              Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

              I get the impression that the discourse is binary – you are either for or against immigration.

              Surely the discussion should be about the nature and scale of immigration, a sensible amnesty policy etc. (perhaps it is, as a non-american I only read the main news)

              Do Democrats admit that immigration is an issue and that it should be controlled/reformed?
              Surely no one is in favor of migrants just walking from Central America into Texas?

              Last year more than 1 million refugees/migrants entered Germany, that is insane.

              • Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

                Do Democrats admit that immigration is an issue and that it should be controlled/reformed?

                Democrats, as with Republicans and all other Americans, have a diverse range of opinions on immigration. But the tendency is for Democrats to be more encouraging of immigration than Republicans.

                Surely no one is in favor of migrants just walking from Central America into Texas?

                Why not? They already do, for one — and then go on to tend our crops and so on.

                And how is that any different from the EU’s open border policy? Should Danes be horrified at the thought of Sicilians just walking into Copenhagen as they please?

                It’s worth remembering that migrant workers, even those who’re grossly underpaid, send most of their earnings back to their families at home. This provides a substantial boost to the economies they’re migrating from and is a significant form of foreign aid. And that investment in the foreign economies in turn improves conditions there and lessens the pressure on migration in the first place. When actively encouraged, it spurs foreign development to the point that bidirectional trade and migration and mutual investment becomes the expected norm…at which point, there’s no more difference between this dirty land of dark-skinned incomprehensible foreigners and the nice colorful family next door.

                Cheers,

                b&

                >

          • Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

            Undocumented migrants in the States are radically different from the refugee crisis Europeans are dealing with. Here, they’re the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of Caesar Chavez. They tend our crops, cook our food, build our homes, and clean our toilets; they do all the shit work nobody else is willing to, and they do it for below the prevailing wage — too often below the legal minimum wage. Our whole society would instantly collapse into chaos were they to be magically disappeared.

            Their condition today is very difficult to distinguish from that of the indentured servants from the Antebellum era…and Trump’s hostility towards them is no different from that displayed by plantation owners towards their property.

            And Blacks of all classes in America are already deeply concerned. Every time they see a police car’s lights flash, they have to wonder if they’re about to be murdered for driving while Black. You might think this is a tangent to our discussion…but one of the big slogans the Republicans have been chanting at their convention is, “Blue Lives Matter.” “Blue,” as in, “the color of a policeman’s uniform.” That’s what Trump is calling for with his “law and order” platform — a police crackdown on the civil unrest that’s been sparked by police brutality.

            Now do you understand the danger we face?

            Cheers,

            b&

            >

            • Eric Grobler
              Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

              Now do you understand the danger we face?

              Thanks for your insights and perspective.
              Lets consider a parallel universe where a moratorium on immigration was placed in 1970. Perhaps blacks would have a higher standard of living today with less racial tension?

              Trump’s hostility towards them is no different from that displayed by plantation owners towards their property.
              Ok, but one could argue liberal policies created this social underclass in the first place.
              Consider all the slave labor done by people from the sub-continent in Arab states.

              Anyway all this is spilled milk, there should be a sensible debate that is based in reality and not on left or right ideological bias.

              • Robert Bray
                Posted July 22, 2016 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

                It’d take a too-long discourse to make the following point adequately, so please accept its assertions as having a good deal of historical weight behind them. Lower middle class whites feel disenfranchised too, and with good reason. Their alienation, economically and socially, contributes mightily to Trump’s electoral appeal, even though their faces are rarely seen on tv images of the Republican convention: they are not delegates, but will be voters. In my opinion this appeal is largely non-partisan and heavily class-dependent. When Reagan began his assault on unionism by firing the air traffic controllers, and anti-unionist rhetoric and action was then continued by succeeding administrations of both parties (the Bushes and Clinton most gallingly), what was left behind in the all the social rubble was the now-buried promise of what Lincoln called ‘the right to rise’ by the labor of one’s own hands and mind. This loss of dignity equalled the loss of livelihood, and very, very few politicians cared. Trump doesn’t either, as his populist supporters will discover. But establishment politicians haven’t even pretended to pay attention or care (with the qualified exception of Obama, who has started doing so far too late in his second term of office).

                Tea Party. Trump. . . What will be the third ‘T’? Tota. . . .

              • Posted July 22, 2016 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

                Lets consider a parallel universe where a moratorium on immigration was placed in 1970. Perhaps blacks would have a higher standard of living today with less racial tension?

                Not a chance. The plight of Blacks in America is entirely homegrown and a direct consequence of chattel slavery. It typically takes multiple generations for a family to lift itself out of poverty, with each successive generation earning an higher educational degree (or equivalent) than the previous. But abject poverty is very difficult to escape from once you’re stuck there without any meaningful form of familial or societal assistance. That’s what’s so horrific about Reagan’s war on Welfare, a war that’s been escalated ever since…fewer and fewer people have been able to escape the trap, and more and more are falling into it.

                Why not? They already do, for one — and then go on to tend our crops and so on.

                Because it smells like slavery?

                Smells? More like, “stinks to high Heaven.”

                But the answer isn’t to rebuild the Berlin Wall across the Mexican border. The answer is to enforce already extant labor protection laws — which apply equally regardless of immigration status. And it’s King Canute’s fool’s errand to think you could stop the migrants in the first place, so why this pretense?

                Should Danes be horrified at the thought of Sicilians just walking into Copenhagen as they please?

                Is this a valid comparison? – Honduras is not part of the US whereas Italy and Denmark is part of the EU with small income differences.

                I fail to see how those distinctions are meaningful or relevant. I know others argue that they are, somehow, but I’ve never found such arguments even remotely convincing.

                Do we not all bleed red?

                Lets say, unlike you I want controlled borders – would many on the left call me hateful and racist?

                “Controlled borders” is often used by Republicans as an euphemism for a militarized wall, so, yes.

                If you spell out something more reasonable, and especially if you first start with a reasonable immigration policy that grants clear legal status to the millions upon millions of migrant workers already here, then you wouldn’t be considered hatefully racist.

                Cheers,

                b&

                >

            • Eric Grobler
              Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:45 pm | Permalink


              Why not? They already do, for one — and then go on to tend our crops and so on.

              Because it smells like slavery?


              Should Danes be horrified at the thought of Sicilians just walking into Copenhagen as they please?

              Is this a valid comparison? – Honduras is not part of the US whereas Italy and Denmark is part of the EU with small income differences.
              Sicilians are not illegal workers, thus they are less likely to be exploited and do not compete unfairly with local low skilled workers.

              This is what is worrying me about the discourse in the US.
              Lets say, unlike you I want controlled borders – would many on the left call me hateful and racist?

            • Eric Grobler
              Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

              It typically takes multiple generations for a family to lift itself out of poverty, with each successive generation earning an higher educational degree (or equivalent) than the previous.

              This is obviously not true. You just do not know your history. (look at Jewish peasants from Europe, Chinese immigrants etc)

              And you’re also missing out on the flip side of the equation. Would you not welcome with open arms all the women in Saudi Arabia so they might walk freely and unaccompanied and dressed as they wish, speaking their minds?
              A few hundred Saudi’s will not be an issue, 1 million would be.
              You just have a naive and simple view on the subject of immigration. I do not have time to explain here. Please study the problems of Muslim communities in Europe. And it is a massive issue – for example France has no idea how to address the crisis it faces.

              • Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

                This is obviously not true. You just do not know your history. (look at Jewish peasants from Europe, Chinese immigrants etc)

                Eh, you’re the one ignorant of history if you think the migrants you cite were bottom-of-the-barrel poor.

                My own grandfather was an Ukrainian Jew with a scar on his forehead from a Cossack’s sword during a pogrom. Grandpa’s family were millers, typical peasants, not wealthy but average. They collectively scraped together some precious jewels and the like, family treasures gathered over the generations, that funded Grandpa’s trip to Canada and eventually New York. Once there, his education (he spoke at least half a dozen languages fluently) and community connections let him run a fruit stand, which put his children in a position to earn college degrees and live quite successful middle-class lives.

                The same pattern repeats across time and culture. It takes a lot of resources of one form or another to cross an ocean and then establish yourself in a foreign community, and the ones who manage are themselves already well above average.

                Again, just look at the Cuban boat people…who, when they successfully make it to Florida, are welcomed by the thriving Cuban community there. And you’ll find disproportionate numbers of doctors and other professionals amongst the refugees — the ones who can scrape together the money to buy the boats that can survive the voyage, bribe the right officials, and so on. The common riff-raff don’t stand a chance, unless they themselves are extremely talented and determined and so on.

                …and the pattern, incidentally, tends to hold with Mexican migrants today; they’re the above-average, better-motivated, adventurous ones….

                Cheers,

                b&

                >

            • Eric Grobler
              Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

              My own grandfather was an Ukrainian Jew with a scar on his forehead from a Cossack’s sword during a pogrom.
              Sounds like a very interesting grandfather. Did you get a chance to chat to him about his past? Hope his family managed to evade the Nazis.


              Eh, you’re the one ignorant of history if you think the migrants you cite were bottom-of-the-barrel poor.

              Lets agree to disagree (somewhat). The biggest factor I believe is culture (perhaps genetic IQ also), and from your post you obviously highlight some cultural factors.

              • Posted July 22, 2016 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

                Did you get a chance to chat to him about his past?

                Not so much. He lived in New York, whereas I grew up in California, so he only made it out to visit us a few times….

                Hope his family managed to evade the Nazis.

                He was from Ukraine, so the Nazis were never a threat. The local Cossacks, on the other hand….

                Lets agree to disagree (somewhat). The biggest factor I believe is culture (perhaps genetic IQ also), and from your post you obviously highlight some cultural factors.

                “Culture” is much too fuzzy and nebulous for this discussion, I would think. Is Sicilian culture that of the honest hardworking fishermen or the Mafia? The Irish — the farmers whose cheeses and whiskeys are some of the best in the world, or the IRA bombers? Is California Mexican culture that of Caesar Chavez and the migrant farm workers or the drug-dealing LA street gangs? Now consider how much movement between those intermixed cultures there can be — in both directions.

                As for IQ…racial variation, if it exists, is dwarfed by individual variation — which, in turn, is dominated by access to education. Below-average private-schooled children of wealthy parents are going to do much better both on IQ tests and socially and financially in life than the smartest kid born in war-torn Somalia. Of course, that’s on average; there will be exceptions, but damned few.

                Cheers,

                b&

                >

        • Eric Grobler
          Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:56 pm | Permalink


          Surely no one is in favor of migrants just walking from Central America into Texas?


          Why not? They already do, for one — and then go on to tend our crops and so on.

          I am curious,
          – Is your attitude toward open borders a majority view among Democrats?
          – People with this view, does it extend to Canada and perhaps also the rest of the world (Middle East for example)?

          • Posted July 22, 2016 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

            Is your attitude toward open borders a majority view among Democrats?

            No clue. I’m not a Democrat and I’ve not pretended to do any polling on the matter.

            People with this view, does it extend to Canada and perhaps also the rest of the world (Middle East for example)?

            The Canadian border used to be wide open. When I was growing up, at the height of the Cold War, we used to brag about it being far and away the longest unguarded border in the history of humanity. Not any longer, alas — to our everlasting shame.

            All of the people I’ve ever personally known from the Middle East have been exactly the sort of people we want here. There’ve been Persians, Lebanese, Israelis, Pakistanis, and more — good, honest, dedicated people building a better world all around me.

            The riff-raff don’t tend to have the means nor inclination to travel halfway around the globe. And we’ve got plenty more homegrown riff-raff to worry about.

            When it comes right down to it, lines drawn on a map have diddly-squat to do with the character of people or their movements. Somebody wants to go somewhere, they’re going to do so. Somebody wants to do something nasty, they’re going to do it.

            And you’re also missing out on the flip side of the equation. Would you not welcome with open arms all the women in Saudi Arabia so they might walk freely and unaccompanied and dressed as they wish, speaking their minds? Isn’t it worth having to deal with a couple jihadis in the process to provide such a means of liberation?

            Cheers,

            b&

            >

          • Posted July 22, 2016 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

            I support your opinion. I think that there is some taboo among decent Americans against talking politically about illegal and Muslim immigration. This makes me fear that the USA will eventually share the fate of Europe. I suppose that many US voters support Trump because he breaks this taboo. I doubt very much, however, that Trump will stick to his promises if elected.

          • Posted July 22, 2016 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

            Please be aware about the rule about dominating threads–no more than 15% of the comments should come from a single poster.

            Okay? Read the Roolz.

            • Eric Grobler
              Posted July 22, 2016 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

              Okay? Read the Roolz.

              No, I do not like your tone when speaking to posters.

              Nice blog though, but I will not be posting again.

              • Ken Kukec
                Posted July 22, 2016 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

                What do we have for our losing contestant, Johnny Olson?

                “Please accept this home version of the WEIT game as a consolation prize.”

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      Thankfully, I did not hear Ingraham’s speech. She didn’t throw a “heil” or two in it, did she?

  18. nickswearsky
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    David Bowie was accused of giving such a salute in 1976 during his Thin White Duke persona (admittedly heavy on Fascist imagery, but an icon of European decadence and decay). But Gary Numan, who was in the crowd steadfastly defends Bowie against this accusation, saying it was just a photographer catching a wave to the crowd at an odd angle.

  19. Damien McLeod
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    You may be right Dr Coyne, perhaps she wasn’t giving a Nazi salute to Mr. Hitler, but maybe she was giving one to the Chump in hopes of him being elected Fuhrer.
    A joke Dr. Coyne, I think many of us were making warped frightened dark joke because of our fear and terror of a Chump win.
    OK, so it could have been just a wave, but jokes, even sick jokes help relieve the tension of our fear and loathing. And a Chump presidency is something to be greatly feared and loathed Sir.

  20. Posted July 22, 2016 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    I like Trump. Mostly I’m hoping to see him make Justin Trudeau cry.

    • Posted July 22, 2016 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

      I hope your are being sarcastic.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

      Tears of angst over a lost ally, they would doubtless be.

  21. Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    I think that someone posted this in jest and it was picked up and passed around…then the “jest” part got lost.

  22. Geoffrey Howe
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    This is up there with people saying that Sarah Palin thought that BLM protesters weren’t people.

    Even if Palin or Ingraham were that evil (and I don’t think for a moment that they are), they wouldn’t actually say these things in public for obvious reasons.

    It’s fun to joke, but everyone who shared this in all sincerity needs an internet skepticism class…

  23. Ullrich Fischer
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    I agree. It is dishonest to use this of evidence of Nazi sympathies. I prefer Bill Hamher’s interpretation: She was demonstrating how Ailes used to push her head down when he was head of Fox News. 🙂 (Maybe it was Trevor Noah made that comment… In any case, it is more plausible and funnier).

    • Mark R.
      Posted July 22, 2016 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

      Bill Maher said it in his convention coverage special.

  24. Ken Kukec
    Posted July 22, 2016 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    Mebbe so. But the Trumpenführer himself was lookin’ (and sounding) all Il Duce during his acceptance speech last night.

    If he’s elected, at least maybe the trains will start running on time.

  25. Gary
    Posted July 24, 2016 at 2:42 am | Permalink

    She has to movement and elegance of an animatronic death doll. Definitely not Nazi though.


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