Here's how you know you have won the argument, my fellow conservatives. It is when the other side, frustrated and completely out of ammunition, calls you a fascist.
It is, however, somewhat disconcerting that the sputtering fool spraying the F word sups at the same table (Isthmus Publishing Co.) as moi. Having skipped Table Manners 101, "fascist" is, nonetheless, the epithet that Jack Craver hurls my way.
"Dave Blaska, a former fascist member of the board himself ..." Craver writes in the April 6 edition of The Sconz. It is a familiar trope, one he used against me on March 25 and on June 25, 2009. At least we can be assured that the author of "The Sconz" will not bore us with tedious essays on "whither hath gone the civil tongue in our publick discourse?"
How intellectually lazy. How morally dishonest. What a trivialization of the real totalitarian creed.
That Master Jack is so lacking in intellectual ammunition, that my blitzkrieg (to get in the spirit of the thing) of fact and reason would reduce this scribbler to picket-sign sloganeering instead of reasoned repartee perhaps may be ascribed to his youth and lack of education.
"There is no word in the English language that gets thrown around more freely by people who don't know what it means than 'fascism,'" writes Jonah Goldberg of the National Review. "Indeed, the more someone uses the word 'fascist' ... the less likely it is that he knows what he is talking about."
One suspects that Craver mistakes the term to be synonymous with any political disagreement of those on the Right. I posit this theorem because Craver also accuses State Rep. Steve Nass' chief of staff of wearing the brown shirt. (The Sconz 3-10-10)
State Sen. Glenn Grothman is "secretly a member of the American Fascist Party," The Sconz revealed on 3-19-10. One searches in vain for a JPEG of the incriminating membership card or other proof but, as Boon said after Bluto blamed the Germans for bombing Pearl Harbor, "Forget it, he's on a roll."
The Badger Herald, the independent campus newspaper, was also on the side of the storm troopers. (The Sconz 2-10-10)
The irony is that, in an early blog, Craver denounced "absurd ad hominem" and "personal attacks" that "actually prevent real dialogue." In the same screed (The Sconz 5-27-09), Craver claimed to embody "the best strain of Wisconsin progressivism, in the spirit of LaFollette and Feingold," which, he avers, is being challenged by "fascism" a word that neither La Follette nor Feingold ever used to characterize their ideological adversaries.
I know Russ Feingold, Jack Craver. Rest assured, you are no Feingold.
For extra credit
Now, for my part, I do not call my political adversaries "communist" unless, like dead old Clarence Kailin, they do so themselves.
I mentioned Jonah Goldberg, who is syndicated in the WI State Journal. He has written a book called "Liberal Fascism" that makes this case:
In reality, international fascism drew from the same wellsprings as American Progressivism. ... American Progressivism -- the moralistic social crusade from which modern liberals claim proud descent -- is in some respects the major source of the fascist ideas applied in Europe by Mussolini and Hitler.
For instance, eugenics -- eliminating undesirables from the breed -- was an aim of the early Planned Parenthood.
In any event, one whose entire mission in public life has been to decrease the reach and control of the centralized state in favor of the individual -- just the opposite of fascism and, of course, communism -- does not need to defend himself here or before such a lightweight as Craver.
So it is for his sake, to sharpen a dull blade, that I assign Master Jack this exercise, if he can and for credit: elucidate exactly how the squire of the Stately Manor can be compared to the notorious fascists known to history. It would make most interesting reading.
Bonus sports coverage:
The Masters golf tournament that concluded Sunday illustrates why sporting events can have intrinsic value beyond pushing a small white ball around in the grass. I sat in an easy chair for virtually all of Sunday's high-def coverage.
I've always been a fan of Phil Mickelson. Hard not to like his easy smile, the way he discreetly acknowledges the gallery without hamming it up. Then there is his golf. He's in the trees, hitting from the pine straw and you're shouting, just punch it out, play it safe, don't blow it. But there he is, the master of disaster, hitting it between two trees barely wide enough for a golf ball to squirt through, his drive goes a good 200 yards, clears a ravine and lands within a couple feet of the hole on the 13th green. Phil makes birdie. He said he had to trust his shot-making. A champion's heart.
But here is the real winner: with victory in the bag, hugging his seriously ill young wife as if he could never let go, sharing his major moment with his life partner, she supporting him as he has supported her. A single tear rolling down his cheek.
The contrast with Tiger Woods, the John Edwards of sports, could not have been more painful. No one there to console the fallen warrior in his disappointment. Now angry and bitter and alone. Our mental image is of a woman betrayed, chasing the man with one of his own golf clubs.
Tiger will, I hope, surpass Jack Nicklaus as the greatest golfer in history. But we know who is the greater man. Tiger can still get there. He had a great role model to learn from down in Georgia last week.
We're Number #17! Blaska's Blog had the 5th-highest traffic in Wisconsin as ranked by BlogNetNews, 17th in conservative influence, 4-10-2010? I will not rest until I reach 15th!