THE BLOG
08/17/2010 03:29 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Get Garlic, Silver, and Wood: Gingrich is Back

Ladies and Gentlemen, Prof. Newt Gingrich :

You know, Nazis don't have the right to put up a sign next to the Holocaust Museum in Washington. We would never accept the Japanese putting up a site next to Pearl Harbor. There's no reason for us to accept a mosque next to the World Trade Center.

Of course, it isn't actually "a mosque," and its proposed site is six hundred yards from Ground Zero. But whoever said Prof. Gingrich's specialty was in World Religions or Geography? (It's not in Vocabulary, either; cf. below).

Still, the point proudly stands. U.S. citizens who practice Islam are, in the analogy drawn by this educator ("I'm a teacher," he likes to tell people), Nazis, and a commercial site--destroyed by terrorists but being rebuilt as a commercial site--is, if you squint hard enough, a commemorative museum.

Similarly, American Muslims--i.e., Americans who practice a certain religion--are, to this scholar, analogous to citizens of another country. And not just any other country. Japan! Those dirty Nips! Who do they think they are, or, rather, who do they think they would be, coming into our country to put up sites, if they undertook to do so?

Want more Newt? Of course you do. Who doesn't need a good laugh and a good scare every now and then? Behold, then, this, from Human Events, in an article entitled, with impressive candor, "There's a New Culture War & We're Losing It." (Ampersand in the original--that's how much they're losing it.)

The Left speaks in the language of right and wrong, of equality and inequality, while the leaders of the free-enterprise majority speak in the dry language of economics. Thus, despite the overwhelming majority in America who support the tenants of free enterprise, the Left is winning both elections and the hearts of America's young people, who did not live through the Cold War and shockingly view socialism almost as favorably as they view capitalism.

As part of the overwhelming majority in America, I support the tenants of free enterprise, since I am one myself (we rent). As for the tenets, well, let's not quibble about semantics. Newt will be the first to deplore today's educational system, and therefore the last to be surprised that, however much he is regarded (by himself) as an intellectual titan of the right--and he is; that's how slim the pickings are over there--he doesn't know the diff between basic principles, and people who live in a residence.

Okay, it's easy to mock a third-rate pol when he goofs on his vocab. Instead, let's mock the content of that paragraph.

The notion that "the leaders of the free-enterprise majority speak in the dry language of economics" is--what's the term...?--hilarious on its face. The leaders of the free-enterprise majority speak in the hyped-up, fantasy-rich language of the demagogue. When Sarah Palin, or Rush Limbaugh, or Newt Gingrich speak, what you do not hear is the dry language of economics. You hear emotional appeals to "freedom," "free markets," "the American dream," and "liberty."

In the dry language of economics, you might say, "In 2007, over one-third of the wealth in the U.S. was owned by the top one percent of the population." In the language of the leaders of the free-enterprise majority, in contrast, you might say, "Obama = Hitler."

Still, assume, for fun, that the professor's basic assertion is correct, that "America's young people" have a positive view of socialism. If America's young people did not live through the Cold War, and if (as we might infer) they are incapable of reading a book or watching a damn movie about anything that happened before 1999, then from where, exactly, did they obtain their shockingly positive opinion about socialism?

It can't be from the Democrats, since (perniciously) they never mention the S word. It might be from the Republicans, who do nothing but mention the S word, but they do so in what we may safely call a pejorative tone. So what makes socialism (to the extent that America's young people know what it is) so appealing?

Perhaps their notions of "socialism" come via exposure to life in countries where free enterprise co-exists happily with government-run programs that take seriously the concept of "human dignity," and where the idea of "society" means more than just "consumers you need guns to protect yourself from." Perhaps they're aware of the sharp contrast between the number of medical bankruptcies filed in the nation of, say, France, in 2007 (0), versus the number in the U.S. (approx. 497,140; see here and here).

Perhaps it's the fact that perfectly nice countries, with perfectly nice capitalistic values (and with life expectancies longer than ours), somehow manage to provide for their citizens certain quasi-socialistic amenities (e.g., health care, only for everyone) without turning into, like, Red China.

But then, that's Newt. Every four years, he's on the make, sashaying up and down the U.S., putting himself on display, and hoping against hope that the American populace will finally have become stupid enough to elect him President.

Sure, it's entertaining. But enough already. With his periodic appearances and vanishings; his utter disregard for his past, with all its scandals and discredited expertise and ethical crimes; with his strikingly icky personal life; with his insistent, unblushing declaration that he is the very definition of a hypocrite (as one of his earlier wives recalls, after he'd recently asked her to condone an affair, which she refused):

He'd just returned from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he'd given a speech full of high sentiments about compassion and family values.

The next night, they sat talking out on their back patio in Georgia. She said, "How do you give that speech and do what you're doing?"

"It doesn't matter what I do," he answered. "People need to hear what I have to say. There's no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn't matter what I live."

with the fact that he purports to be a college professor but writes "tenants" instead of "tenets"...

With all this proof that he is not an actual human being but an evil simulacrum thereof: Can't we all finally acknowledge that Newt Gingrich is a vampire? Is there no one willing to stake this clown and put us out of his misery? Jason Stackhouse, with your shotgun and your wooden bullets: where are you now that we need you?