Quote# 89268

In World War II, people died to produce and protect books. Anti-Fascist organizations, American Jewish Groups and writers, editors and journalists launched massive demonstrations in defense of the book, including, on March 10, 1933, the largest march, to that date, in the history of New York City: 100,000 people turned out to express outrage at the burning of books and other events in Germany. In its coverage of the Berlin book burnings, Newsweek used "Holocaust" as its headline.

Today's hi-tech propagandists tell us that the book is a tree-murdering, space-devouring, inferior form that society would be better off without. In its place, they want us to carry around the Uber-Kindle.

The hi-tech campaign to relocate books to Google and replace books with Kindles is, in its essence, a deportation of the literary culture to a kind of easily monitored concentration camp of ideas, where every examination of a text leaves behind a trail, a record, so that curiosity is also tinged with a sense of disquieting fear that some day someone in authority will know that one had read a particular book or essay. This death of intellectual privacy was also a dream of the Nazis. And when I hear the term Kindle, I think not of imaginations fired but of crematoria lit.

Alan Kaufman, Huffington Post 77 Comments [8/30/2012 6:03:57 AM]
Fundie Index: 50
Submitted By: Cyclonus

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Not fundie, but certainly in bad taste to think that e-books are inherently fascist.

8/30/2012 6:07:44 AM


So he gets over-lyrical in his prose? Not a problem. He raises a valid point. "In 21st Century, books read you."
I'm not that concerned, but I cannot dismiss his claim on logical grounds.

8/30/2012 6:08:11 AM

The Crimson Ghost

So you're comparing Nazi book burnings to using a Kindle or Nook? That is so gut wrenchingly stupid I think it actually gave me a migraine. It's way too early for this.

And BTW-I read all the freakin' time-& I don't have a kindle or a nook. Oddly enough-I'm currently reading a book about the discovery of an old Nazi U Boat that was discovered near where I live back in 1991. If only you had been on that sunken sub, Mr Kaufman.

8/30/2012 6:10:52 AM

Mister Spak

Corporations trying to sell as many books as possible is like nazis burning books?

8/30/2012 6:11:55 AM


This smells like a plot for a crime drama at some point. "What's the connection between all these people. Oh, they all downloaded that new controversial book on their kindles."

8/30/2012 6:16:20 AM


Isn't this more CSTDT?

8/30/2012 6:16:34 AM


Alan Kaufman are you sure you're not Andy Kaufman speaking from the hereafter?

8/30/2012 6:26:40 AM


Placing "Uber" in front of a word, doesn't make it nazi.

8/30/2012 6:28:11 AM


You have time to worry about this? Dang, must be sweet to be you Alan.

8/30/2012 6:30:48 AM


I wanna know how someone can make a comment about a product named kindle, with a version known as fire, which references book burning, without linking any of these things and instead going with something so lame as an 'uber-kindle'.

It's not like it's much easier to hide purchase of real books than it is to transfer electronic ones.

8/30/2012 7:07:00 AM


You seem confused. The Nazis were destroying books while digital versions free them. Anyone, anywhere can now have access to information. No government can burn them, no authority can ban them, and anyone can read them. No matter how controversial the book may be, once a single copy exists on the internet you can bet that it will be uploaded to countless sites, shared between people, and generally disseminated around the world fairly easily and quickly. Anyone with access to the internet is now free to be exposed to new thoughts and ideas, even those that their government may not want them having access to. Try doing that with traditional books.

8/30/2012 7:08:44 AM

Leighton Buzzard

Don't be fucking stupid, Alan. Point a) nobody, but nobody, is saying the things you say 'hi-tech propagandists' are saying. Point b) you could say exactly the same thing about monitoring people's reading re paper books. Bookstores know which books you bought! Libraries record loans! Big Brother is watching you!

I love my Kindle. 1500 books in my pocket - awesome.

8/30/2012 7:12:18 AM


Certainly darndest but not al all fundie.

8/30/2012 7:25:05 AM


"[It] is, in its essence, a deportation of the literary culture to a kind of easily monitored concentration camp of ideas..."

Not at all.
It's capitalism.

8/30/2012 7:43:48 AM


While I an all for a rally to preserve print this is slightly crazy.

8/30/2012 7:45:33 AM

Seeker Lancer

By his logic he should be praising the digital age. Now books can never truly be destroyed.

8/30/2012 7:49:08 AM

Rabbit of Caerbannog

This is certainly...out there. I'm not sure how to vote this, I may just hit "WTF?!" because it's so damn strange...

8/30/2012 7:50:59 AM

Thinking Allowed

Books available for Kindle =/= book burning.

8/30/2012 7:51:10 AM

"These monsters want us to put all our literature on paper sheets! They say stone tablets are a massive waste of resources. But you want to know why these Nazis really want us to transition over to paper? They can burn it!"

All I hear when I see luddite arguements about digital media.

8/30/2012 7:59:30 AM

Filin De Blanc

I like physical books too, but I'm pretty sure that there isn't a Secret Council of Kindle that oversees censorship of all the books published on it. You can download anything that someone makes available.

8/30/2012 8:00:26 AM


There is a problem in our society - but the problem is that fewer and fewer people are actually reading books, instead preferring TV and movies. The internet and e-books are actually helping to combat this malaise. Books are about the written word. So are Kindles and the net. I love physical books, but I own a Sony E-Reader because it gives me access to books I cannot find elsewhere. On a very small scale, I find this empowering. Kindles etc allow MORE access to books than previously. Books are about the information stored in them, not the physical pages. People that burned books did so to try and prevent the CONTENT of the books being distributed amongst the general population. Now it is even easier for the general population to gain acccess to the content of books.
Oh, I give up.

8/30/2012 8:03:16 AM


The comparison to Nazis is a bit hyperbolic, but ebooks (as the publishing industry wants them to be) are a crippled mess of DRM that can be remotely deleted from your ebook reader.

At least you can purchase and/or give an out of print physical book to a used book market.

8/30/2012 8:11:45 AM

rubber chicken

While this is, clearly, racing into conspiracy territory, can I ask all of you who have this, rather charming, faith in the ultimate security of the net, How do you think the data gets from point A,B,C, whatever to your laptop/kindle/smart phone etc ?

The answer is via a very limited number of physical connections. Fibre Optic cables, Satellites, Microwave transmission paths or good old fashioned copper wire. This infrastructure cannot be supplied or supported by hobbyists or groups of nerds. It is provided by corporations, usually with considerable government support, and represents the single point of control/surveillence and monitoring that could, - and I stress Could -, be used by forces of repression.

8/30/2012 8:23:23 AM

Wykked Wytch

Appropriating the Holocaust... to bash Kindles?

You, sir, are a fucktard who needs to read a book. A history book. Or any common sense book, for that matter. On a Kindle, too, just to piss you off.

8/30/2012 8:39:25 AM

J. James

Wow, a liberal Godwin fundie! How rare!

The Huffington Post has always been full of woo and baloney. They're like Fox, but new-agey liberal.

8/30/2012 8:44:31 AM

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