Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Once he got into office, however, Hitler, like Mussolini proceeded to destroy the democratic system he used to win the office. He pushed through the Reichstag an “Enabling Act” that gave him four years of executive power without needing to get the backing of the Legislature. In other words, Hitler used democracy to destroy democracy. One is reminded of Lenin’s quip: “The Capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them.”
Would you believe that something alarmingly analogous is about to happen in our country?
Um, no. I wouldn't.

If I posted the by line "Rush Limbaugh" under this I'm sure no one would be surprised. Probably not even Rush. But it would be wrong, because the byline is:

Arlie J. Hoover is a professor of history at Abilene Christian University.

I don't know Professor Hoover. And I'm not going to argue with him. But I do want to post just a few of the comments that this article has spawned on the Abilene Reporter News site, which take note of Prof. Hoover's institutional affiliation, explicitly mentioned in his byline.
*Arlie I will never send any child to ACU. Any school that supports the type of history you apparantly teach can be up to no good at all.
*Is this smuck really a professor? Now I see why my college age students laughed when I asked them to stay in town to finish their education. Can you imagine what he preach if he were a minister....

*ACU must be proud. Thank God I took my classes at HSU.

*Its easy to see where this man is coming from.
ACU+Professor= The Far Right. I know you folks have to be smart enough to see that this "Professor" is nothing more than a far right bible wielding Limbaugh loving Foxx watching Republican.

*Remember back before the election when Sadler used to post regularly? Sadler=ACU + Professor=Left winger.
So your Hoover=ACU + Professor=Right wing does not work. You really cannot assume that all professors at ACU think alike.
What I take from these two examples is that ACU + Professor=Academic Freedom and Diversity of thought.
Note that the one not-negative comment referencing ACU, the last one, is a rather weak defense that not every professor is a paranoid right wing pigeon from outer space. Every other comment characterizes the institution on the basis of its representation here by the good professor.

Should Dr. Hoover have not written his op-ed at all? No--I shoot my mouth off irresponsibly here on my little blog all the time, so it's not like I can seriously start telling people they should shut the hell up for their own good or because it's smart or prudent or whatever. What pisses me off is that ACU--an institution I love and am proud to affiliated with--is being represented by this article. Professor Hoover, print your wacky half-baked historical analogies in any venue that will take them (and Abilene Reporter News, you might re-think your publication-of-crap policy, BTW) but please, leave my alma mater out of it. You're not speaking for ACU. So sign your name. Use your title if you want to feel cool. But leave my school alone.


Jonathan said...

My wife's response when I sent her the link last night: "well, that eliminates one off of Elliot's potential college list"

Even ignoring the absurd "alarming analogy," it's disappointing that Hoover (be his perspective on the left or the right) makes such a shallow analysis of current events...not the least of which is lumping together people who think the proposed reforms are a government take-over that will fundamentally transform our economy with those who are unhappy with it because it is so modest and doesn't go nearly far enough as evidence that reform is contrary to the "will of the people." "spirit of democracy"? how does gridlock in the absence of 59+ votes fit with that? passing legislation with 59+ votes in the senate is ramming it down throats?

Dan Carlson said...

"Should Dr. Hoover have not written his op-ed at all?"

Easy answer: No, he shouldn't have. I love the First Amendment, and know that Hoover was constitutionally guaranteed the right to say what he did. But that doesn't mean he should have said it. Idiotic speech, though free, is still idiotic. What's worse, he just recycled the same foaming-at-the-mouth loony theory that's been peddled by the far right since 2008. What a sickening piece of garbage. Makes me sad to see.

Glad I found your blog.

Dan Carlson, ACU class of 2004

Anonymous said...


Maybe you have no children and grandchildren chained with fully divested futures thanks to recent US politics. I have 5 grandkids ages 14-19, and FOR THEM I am very sad.

We need more Arlie Hoovers who have not been institutionally gagged.