[lit-ideas] The Heil Heidegger Effect

  • From: Eric Yost <mr.eric.yost@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 02 Nov 2009 15:07:44 -0500

Phil: Heidegger was a supporter of Nazism
His writings are hard to understand
Therefore ban his books and block any future publications. Wow.

The Heil Heidegger Effect: I'm in a somewhat similar argument with a well-known poet on Facebook, a guy who should know better. He wants HarperCollins, his former publisher, to ban Sarah Palin's new ghostwritten book, and he considers it a strong moral issue.

Called said poet out on his intolerance: should publishers only publish books by those who agree with his politics? He doesn't get it. He compares Palin to Pinochet. Refuses to see that the best answer to a bad book is a better book. Says Palin's book is "politically dangerous." I remind him that the people who burned Wycliffe regarded his English Bible translation as "politically dangerous." Still doesn't get it.

How can the author of so many books be so intolerant? Celebrate Banned Book Week then go after Palin as though she were Pinochet writing about mass murder from the grave?

Moreover, why is this syndrome more characteristic of liberal zealots than conservative zealots? If you disagree with a conservative zealot, you are "stupid and wrong." But if you disagree with a liberal zealot, you are "evil." Why this tendency?
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