The Passing Parade: Cheap Shots from a Drive By Mind

"...difficile est saturam non scribere. Nam quis iniquae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus, ut teneat se..." " is hard not to write Satire. For who is so tolerant of the unjust City, so steeled, that he can restrain himself... Juvenal, The Satires (1.30-32)

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Donald Trump is literally Hitler

As anyone who knows me will be more than happy to tell you, I am easily confused. I didn’t start out to be easily confused—I was rather hoping to play centerfield for the Yankees someday, but that dream vanished when it became clear that the curveball was a permanent part of baseball and not some passing fad like Pet Rocks, Cabbage Patch dolls, and Clinton presidential campaigns, and that my inability to hit a curveball with any degree of regularity, or never, as it is sometimes called, would permanently keep me out of centerfield at Yankee Stadium, unless I was taking the tour the Yankee organization provides when the team is out of town—but I am easily confused today, which I ascribe to being old and out of it, and to my unfortunate habit of wearing unfashionable hats.

But be that as it may, I am confused because President Trump is literally Hitler.  Not a would be Hitler or a Hitler manqué, as if he were a literally French Hitler; one assumes that the food would improve in school cafeterias if he were; or a wannabe Hitler or an aspiring Hitler or a Hitler avatar, but literally Hitler, and being literally Hitler is not a good thing to be. Now, other people have been literally Hitler before Trump was literally Hitler; Ronald Reagan was literally Hitler and both President Bushes were literally Hitler as well, as was John McCain and Milt Romney. Barry Goldwater was almost literally Hitler, but apparently he either got over it or the people who were thinking about saying that Goldwater was literally Hitler decided that calling him literally Hitler just sounded silly and contented themselves with saying that Goldwater was literally loonier than Hitler at a hot dog eating contest. I do not recall if Richard Nixon was literally Hitler; I am old enough to remember Nixon very well and I just don’t remember if Nixon was literally Hitler or if he was just sort of vaguely Hitlerish, but not during the latter half of football season.  I find the idea of Mitt Romney being literally Hitler intriguing in a strange sort of way; being literally Hitler suggests the idea that Romney had literally Hitlerian powers as governor of Massachusetts, like the power to dispose of his enemies as he willed or the power to invade such nonthreatening neighbor states as New Hampshire or Connecticut or even to arrest all the New York Yankees fans in Massachusetts and send them to summer camps on Nantucket Island, as opposed to the not very literally Hitlerish power to raise everyone’s health insurance premiums, which is very not literally Hitler-type power at all. Any idiotic dolt of a politician can do that, you know, and do it without the really cool uniforms that being literally Hitler can get for you.

One thing is absolutely true, however: Donald Trump is literally Hitler. That is an undeniable historical fact like Christopher Columbus discovering the electric light bulb or Fiorello LaGuardia discovering that secondhand tobacco smoke can give you herpes. Here, however, is the part that confuses me: if Trump is literally Hitler and Romney was literally Hitler, how can Trump be literally Hitler if Romney was literally Hitler, and how can both men be literally Hitler when Hitler was literally Hitler, and Hitler, you might be interested to know, still has living relatives who might sue the people who keep saying that Trump is literally Hitler and Romney was literally Hitler for infringing on the family’s trademark of being literally Hitler, or, in their case, literally Hitlers.  This, to me, is a lot like People magazine declaring that some male movie star is the sexiest man alive last year and then declaring another male movie star the sexiest man alive this year. How can the latter be sexier than the former when the former is still living?  I could understand this if the sexiest man alive this year was competing, if that is what you do in this situation, with the sexiest man alive from 1937, but last year was only last year and it’s unlikely that last year’s winner has diminished in sexiness so much that anyone can notice an appreciable difference between this year and last, and how does anyone measure such a subjective quality anyway?  Is there a cellphone application that will do this for us nowadays?

Finally, there is the problem that no one seems to want to deal with here. In declaring that Trump is literally Hitler, how do we judge the case of Adolf Hitler, who was literally Hitler long before it became politically fashionable to be literally Hitler?[1] If Trump is literally Hitler, then it necessarily follows that Hitler can’t be literally Hitler, he has to be someone else, doesn’t he, but Alfred E. Newman and Bill Gates are already someone else, and no, I don't know what that means. This, in turn, leads to the problem of why would anyone care if Trump is literally Hitler when clearly Hitler could not be literally Hitler because Trump is literally Hitler?  If Hitler can’t be literally Hitler because Trump is literally Hitler, then accusing Trump of being literally Hitler is as meaningless a charge as accusing Trump of being a life insurance salesman, or worse, a Red Sox fan.  So, I am still confused and there doesn’t seem to be anyone around willing to untangle the mental knot this conundrum is causing me. I must give the whole matter much more thought, I think.

[1] I should also point out that being literally Hitler did not keep Hitler from literally shooting Hitler in the head. So, since Hitler literally killed Hitler for being literally Hitler, is this literally a good thing or a bad thing vis-à-vis Trump, who is literally Hitler but is unlikely to do the same thing?  I am still confused.

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  • At 6:47 AM, Blogger SnoopyTheGoon said…

    "As anyone who knows me will be more than happy to tell you, I am easily confused."
    Being guilty of not visiting this blog for so long, I came with an intention to agree with everything it says. This, however...

    OK, but you sure got me confused.

  • At 7:11 AM, Blogger The Contentious Centrist said…

    A masterpiece of ironic rumination.

  • At 10:35 PM, Anonymous Dick Stanley said…

    DJT can't be literally Hitler since he has Melania who would never have married a classless little runt like literal Hitler who was lucky to get Eva Braun considering his ED.

  • At 4:09 AM, Blogger James said…

    As some in the US you are taking this too literally.


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