Thursday, January 31, 2008

Jedi Fascism: The Readers Respond

Response to Jedi Fascism has been extremely gratifying. Sure, the same old bleeding-heart pro-Jedi types are trotting out the same tired, predictable attacks on me and the book--but here's the thing: they haven't read it. It isn't even due out until next year 2010. How can you slam a book you haven't even read? If somebody wrote a book in favor of intelligent design, or arguing that the earth is flat, would it make sense to dismiss it without first seeing what the arguments are? Of course not.

Happily, there are more positive comments than negative, and they are far more thoughtful and serious. Early blog reviews are particularly encouraging: Daniel Wolf calls it "a brilliant and timely analysis of Jedi politics", and The United States of Jamerica says "'Jedi Fascism' would actually be an interesting book."

My reader e-mails are also a great source of encouragement and unpaid research helpful information. Here's one:

It's about time someone got to the bottom of this. I took one look at Carrie Fisher's hairdo in the first film (just called Star Wars for you youngsters out there), and thought her name should be Helga. There's your smoking gun right there.
Leia, She-Wolf of the SS? Sounds plausible to me.

Another reader e-mails:
You should also check out Jonathan Last's defense of the Empire. Last makes some of the same points you make, and also argues that Palpatine is a "relatively benign dictator" like...Pinochet.
Last makes a point similar to my own:
In "Attack of the Clones"...Count Dooku leads a separatist movement of planets that want to secede from the Republic. Dooku promises these confederates smaller government, unlimited free trade, and an "absolute commitment to capitalism"....The Republic, of course, is eager to quash these separatists, but they never make a compelling case--or any case, for that matter--as to why, if they are such a freedom-loving regime, these planets should not be allowed to check out of the Republic and take control of their own destinies.
They hate freedom and capitalism...hey, who does that remind you of?

Some comments are pithier but no less insightful:
The storm trooper is the Jew of Jedi fascism.
That is definitely going into the book.

Another reader makes a great point:
Mind control powers. Seriously ... how can you defend THAT?
When you watch old newsreel footage of Hitler, it's almost as if he has...wait for it...mind control powers. Coincidence?

Yet another reader corrects the record:
Alderaan was "liberated," get it straight!
True, but I'm sure the MoveOn crowd doesn't see it that way. To them, it's a 'criminal act of aggression'--and maybe even a 'quagmire', at that.

The same reader also notes that Emperor Palpatine is exactly like Dick Cheney, and as a charter member of the Dick Cheney fan club, I think that's an excellent analogy. Because at a time when everybody talks a big game about how they don't like people-pleasing politicians who live by the polls, Palpatine is pretty much the only guy out there who walks the walk. He truly doesn't care what people think about him. I love that.

Anyway, thanks for all the great comments--keep 'em coming! I wish I could credit all of you when the book comes out, but that would be a lot of work. Just know that I am really, really grateful.