Friday, May 19, 2006

If Hitler loved kittens, then kittens are evil

It's the reductio ad absurdum in Colbert's bit that really delighted me. Except that it's not really a reductio ad absurdum, because the original claims are so legitimately absurd. It is, in fact, what Colbert does best: taking truly absurd arguments and embracing them so thoroughly that their absurdity can't help but come to the fore.

It might seem reasonable, to Fox News fans, that finding similarities between the Iranian president's ideas and "Democratic talking points" would reflect badly on both. But when Colbert jumps into the fray by saying that "if someone is sufficiently evil, everything about them and what they believe is wrong, whether or not it's right" -- well, it's not a reductio, because it doesn't in any way misrepresent the original argument. But it certainly makes the absurdity hard to miss.


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