Godwin’s Law: An example

Having grown up in the age of the USENET, I am intimately familiar with Godwin’s Law. “As a Usenet discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one.” The corollary to which has always been that whoever equates his opponent in a debate to Hitler or the Nazi, he has admitted that he has lost the argument. The thread or discussion has to be considered closed.

Recently, I saw an instance of such a premature end to a discussion. I had written a post on the GS report.

I sent that post to one person, who shall remain anonymous, who had mailed me the GS report with obvious enthusiasm. He wrote back saying that I was too negative and that I should give my own positive recommendations on what is to be done. Evidently, the man did not bother to read the post because I did indeed give my own 5-point program. (Half the points and twice as good as the GS report, you may say 🙂 )

Anyway, he wrote back saying my recommendations were impossible for Indians to do. “Who will bell the cat?” he asked rhetorically.

My response was a detailed one (which I will not post but if you are really curious, I will send it to you upon request. Or perhaps I will post the whole exchange in password protected post — without identifying the person, of course.)

The man responded.

So, you find fault with the people of India!!

I am reminded of what I read about Hitler who, at the end of the Second World War before committing suicide, is reported to have said that, because the war was lost (due to his foolishness), the German people did not deserve to live!!!!!.

You are indeed a great economist!!

Game, set, match!!

The man basically conceded defeat and descended to the street-fight equivalent of saying “your mama wears army boots.”

Author: Atanu Dey


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