I guess we all knew that the success of Tom Woods’ book, The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History would bring fire. Today it has come with an editorial from the New York Times, The Difference Between Politically Incorrect and Historically Wrong. There is no attempt to argue with Tom’s facts despite the promising title, instead the smear begins in the first sentence which immediately implies that Tom’s book is racist. By the third paragraph, he is connecting Tom’s book with Jim Powell’s FDR’s Folly (fair, Tom makes similar arguments I believe) and Michelle Malkin’s In Defense of Internment (whoa there! Tom doesn’t make any such argument).
In addition to guilt by association, there is the “slippery slope” approach… If the 14th Amendment wasn’t properly ratified then “slavery should be legal”! Tom’s view of the Bill of Rights means that “[it] does not prohibit the states from imposing religion on their citizens”, the implication being that that is just what these crazy right wingers want. (We have enough trouble at my church with some of the folks who choose to come! We surely don’t need to be dealing with people who are forced to be there!)
All in all, this is the best that could be hoped for. Tom’s book will get even more attention and the criticisms are so hysterical and wrong that anyone who actually reads the book won’t take them seriously. Congratulations, Tom! We can only hope that leftists figure out how to tell Neocons like Malkin apart from real conservatives like Tom one of these days.11:41 am on January 26, 2005 Email Stephen W. Carson