Thursday, March 05, 2009

Godwin's Law: Downfall Redeems Hitler, Mugabe Now the One

Back when we still had a debate on Manchester's Transport Innovation Fund the most hostile ultras on the NO side produced nasty videos and nasty posters too. One of these (below right) was saying in lieu of an argument and as a dog whistle that Robert Mugabe would vote yes. The Far Right, including Tory elements, have been prone to calling Labour "ZaNuLabour" in reference to Mugabe's so called political party. And now Iain Dale is calling "Quantitative Easing" - which used to be called "increasing the Money Supply" - he's calling it Mugabanomics.

In Zimbabwe of course the local currency inflation rate runs in thousands of percent per week, even per day. Mugabe is quite literally printing money like it's going out of fashion. And shovelling gold and hard currency in his own direction constantly too. Here we have inflation right now of between 0% and 3% depending what measure we use. And £75 Billion over months and months is quite frankly trivial.

The Zimbabwe experience is not what's going on in our economy just now. And nor is it what's been going on here and in other economies, including those run by Tory-spectrum governments, for many many years. "Quantitative Tightening" - decreasing the money supply "M" - is the other side of the coin as it were. And that's a standard instrument too.

QE and QT are now conventionally carried out by changing interest rates rather than boosting production or burning at De la Rue or KLF. But just now, as in certain other ultra low interest economies that's, at least conceptually, difficult. Minus 2% interest rates anyone? What would that actually mean? Would that flush out the loan capital from the banks? I don't actually think so. meaning that it would not do the business that QE is intended to do. Keeping or getting things moving.

Under the fundamental Godwin's Law Mike Godwin stated in 1990 that the longer a Usenet discussion went on the more and more likely Nazi or Hitler was likely to come up as an analogy. Stalin similar perhaps, but not directly cited along these lines, amazingly until 2008*. And the corollary was and is that the first person to cite Nazi or Hitler had automatically LOST THE ARGUMENT.

Hitler has been rather rehabilitated as a reference through the passage of time and through the Downfall meme. The AV equivalent of imagining the diabolical dictator, and those he stands in for, perched on the loo.

President Robert Mugabe is now "the one" if you ask me. The first resource and recourse of the lazy scoundrel who has run out of arguments.

Paul's Law states that the longer an electronic discourse proceeds by blog, by tweet, by f-book, or the more direct legacies of Usenet i.e. electronic discussion lists the more likely ZaNuPF and/or Mugabe are to appear. And, of course, the person introducing them is the loser of that particular argument. So, Iain Dale is the first official loser under this new Law, ever.

* According to the Godwin Wiki's last paragraph: "On October 20, 2008, Rachel Maddow, on The Rachel Maddow Show, proposed a corollary to Godwin's law that as the time a liberal candidate is believed to be winning an election or argument increases, the probability that they will be labeled communist or socialist approaches one.[19] In a Christmas Day review of The Spirit, New York Times movie critic A.O. Scott suggested that "a similar axiom" to Godwin's Law, "applied to Hollywood, would stipulate that every movie star must eventually dress up in a German military uniform."[citation needed]"


benchilltory said...

inflation between 0 and 3%! you obviously dont do food shopping

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