But I hate it when someone gets Godwin’s Law wrong. Especially when it’s Glenn Reynolds, possibly the smartest blogger of them all. Byrd didn’t violate the law, he proved it.
Everyone seems to assume that Godwin’s Law states that an argument is over when someone compares someone else to the Nazis, and that the violater has therefore lost the argument. That’s, at best, a corally. The law simply states that the longer an argument continues the more inevitable it becomes that one party will compare the other party to the Krauts (sorry, been watching Band of Brothers), and that the argument is no longer of any interest afterwards. It says nothing about the winner or the loser, or even that the argument is over. It’s inferred that the argument is over, since it’s no longer an interesting one, and it’s an even more tangential inference that the invoker lost the argument.
It would be just as correct to say that the invoker won the argument. After all, they ended it. But the accusation has to be true. If Robert Byrd compared the Republicans to Nazis and they were, say, killing thousands of Jews, he’d be on the side of God. As it is, he’s just an idiot.
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