Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Braxton's Lear - Argumentum ad nazium

Pooh! You speak like a green girl
Unsifted in such perilous circumstance.
Braxton's Lear usually isn't wasted on a political figure - the military doesn't give out medals for standing in the chow line, and we don't bestow distinctions upon over-the-top stump speeches. They're both just a part of life. But there are a few extenuating circumstances in the case of this dramatic monologue by Elizabeth May, leader of Canada's Green Party.

First of all, I once said something nice about her. It turns out that Dean was right, she IS crazier than Ted Kennedy in a Barney suit.
Green leader Elizabeth May is standing by her comments over the weekend that condemn Prime Minister Stephen Harper's stance on climate change, comparing it to "a grievance worse than Neville Chamberlain's appeasement of the Nazis."
If it were only May's resort to the argumentum ad nazium, this would be a short post. After all, it is accepted practice that dragging in a reference to Hitler or the Nazis in an argument not directly connected with those subjects, results in an automatic loss of argument for the person doing it (see also Godwin's Law).

But wait. There's more.
The longtime environmentalist, who said she was having "a lousy week" because of the federal government's weak action plan on the environment, was standing by comments she made on the weekend to a church congregation in London, Ont....Ms. May delivered what she called an "environmental sermon" to the Wesley Knox United Church in Wortley Village on Sunday, saying the government is threatening the genocide of mankind by failing to take action to remedy global warming.
When you're a 54-year old woman, getting emotional and having lousy weeks is not unusual; but most of us find better ways of coping with it than getting up in church and yelling at a bewildered congregation. But I suppose she's just getting some practice in:
Liberal MP Glen Pearson, who invited Ms. May, an Anglican minister-in-training, to speak to his church after defeating her in the byelection in the London NorthCentre riding, likened the Green party leader to an Old Testament prophet.
Elizabeth Kaeton had better watch her back; I think this gal is angling for her job.
However, Mr. Pearson said yesterday that he was not comfortable with Ms. May's Nazis analogy and he believed it perhaps crossed the line for proper discourse in a church.

"Canadians need to get more serious about it, but the whole link to the Nazis over that went beyond the pale, for me. You have to be careful there. We have all messed up on the environment, right?" Mr. Pearson said.
Too over-the-top even for a LIBERAL - that's saying a lot.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

"genocide of mankind" - using the loaded term 'genocide' is a bit silly and inaccurate as well. It should be 'specicide' or something if she really thinks the entire race is doomed.

11:48 pm  
Blogger Dr. Mabuse said...

Yes, it is a dumb term. I think she just didn't want to let go of the Nazi analogy, and Nazism and genocide go together so smoothly, she just tossed that in to be more alarming. (At least she didn't use the term "holocaust". An unusual moment of restraint there.) She could have just said "obliteration of humanity".

7:48 am  
Blogger The Bovina Bloviator said...

. . . or she could have just shut up.

11:01 pm  

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