Godwin’s Law

Godwin’s law (also known as  Godwin’s Rule of Nazi Analogies or  Godwin’s Law of Nazi Analogies) is a humorous observation made by  Mike Godwin in 1990 that has become an  Internet adage. It states: “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler  approaches   100% .”  In other words, Godwin put forth the hyperbolic observation that, given enough time, in  any online discussion–regardless of topic or scope–someone inevitably criticizes some point made in the discussion by comparing it to beliefs held by Hitler and the Nazis. –   Wikipedia

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I love this. This is the type of discovery that brings joy to my heart.

The definition continues:

Godwin’s law is often cited in online discussions as a deterrent against the use of arguments in the widespread  Reductio ad Hitlerum form.   – Wikipedia

Reductio ad Hitlerum” ?!?!

I fucking love language.   In fact, I made up a good word the other day:   Whateverism.   It’s the modern malaise, basically, and I’m against it.   Please feel free to bandy this word about, if you’re not comfortable with Reductio ad Hitlerum.

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11 Responses to “Godwin’s Law”

  1. Cricket9 Says:

    This is brilliant, thanks for introducing me to the Godwin law and Reductio at Hitlerum! The picture is perfect too.

  2. dana Says:

    I love *you*, Sister Wolf! And yes, language, too. Don’t let any haters get you down.

  3. DCD Says:

    I love you too Sister! You are goddamn smart, funny, and interesting. I laugh at my computer and quote you in conversations.

  4. honeypants Says:

    Oh, I love whateverism. It bothers me too, especially when I see it in myself – which lately, I have. Too much. As for Godwin’s Law, I love that principle. It’s totally true! Reductio ad Hitlerum sounds like a Harry Potter spell, haha. Like it would turn someone into a mini-Hitler. I’m sorry! I love you!

  5. Suspended Says:

    I have a problem with whateverism, too. I think it might lead to wherethefuckdidmylifegoisy

    I will use your word until it bores everyone.

    I also love Hitlerum. If you break it up into syllables it sounds like a hip french alcoholic drink.

  6. Andra Says:

    I invented a word about 40 years ago.
    It is “schlerg”.
    I means all those nasty, blotches of stuff that appear from time to time.
    Unidentified nastiness.
    It is all schlerg.
    Use it with my blessing.

  7. Jaimi Says:

    I love this! I’m reminded of a quote from one of my favorite musicians, Momus. He wrote in an essay in 1991, “In the future, everyone will be famous for 15 people.”

  8. Dru Says:

    ^ oooh, hey, a Momus fan! I’m rather unfamiliar with his music, but LOVE his writing.

  9. Cricket9 Says:

    Seems like I have a lot of schlerg in my house right now…:-(((

  10. brooklyn_codger Says:

    OOH Latin!!

  11. Godammit, I’m Mad! » Blog Archive » Gwyneth, Enough Already! Says:

    […] almost redundant, like denouncing Hitler. Wait. Am I comparing Gwyneth to Hitler?! Sure, see Godwin’s Law. But if you need to catch the latest Iron Man movie and your revulsion for Gwyneth is getting in […]

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