"No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions." --Thomas Jefferson to John Tyler, 1804.


Godwin’s law says that “given enough time, in any online discussion — regardless of topic or scope — someone inevitably makes a comparison to Hitler or the Nazis.” It’s intended as a perjorative: Godwin (an attorney and author) himself said that in structuring the “law” as a mathematical proposition, “I wanted folks who glibly compared someone else to Hitler or to Nazis to think a bit harder about the Holocaust.”

Case in point today: Idaho state Senator Sheryl Nuxoll, R-Cottonwood, who disagrees with the proposed state health insurance exchange. Her point seems to be that the exchange would be an early step toward elimination of the health insurance companies (which, in truth, many people think might not be a bad idea). There is at least a real policy argument to be had here, but consider the way she put it in a post (expanded) on Twitter:

“Much like the Jews boarding the trains to concentration camps, private insurers are used by the feds to put the system in place because the federal government has no way to set up the exchange. Based on legislation and the general process that is written toward this legislation, the federal government will want nothing to do with private insurance companies. The feds will have a national system of health insurance and they will eliminate the insurance companies.”

Yep: Creating a means, currently unavailable, for customers to be able to compare health insurance policies, is just exactly like torturing and killing millions of Jews in concentration camps.

Think a bit harder. – Randy Stapilus

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