Published by Threshold Editions on October 20, 2020
Genres: Non-Fiction, Politics
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Best-selling author Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, investigates the continuing probe into the Democrat's attempted "coup" to oust President Trump. Astonishing developments, ignored by a Leftist media.
As a pastor I often receive any number of unsolicited books in the church office addressed to myself. Often these are missives warning against the secularization of theology or explaining why it is we have to cling on to a fundamentalist worldview and usually they include some sort of letter or forward explaining why it is the publisher felt the need to pass along books so liberally. Rarely however do I receive a book where the publisher attempts to trick me into believing that I’ve made the mistake of making a contribution to their cause but this is apparently the tactic Threshold Editions and Judicial Watch felt was best in their effort to get me to read Tim Fitton’s A Republic Under Assault.
Republic is, by no small exaggeration, propaganda. In it Fitton begins with the only line I found myself agreeing with, “In one way or another… a crisis always reveals who we are as individuals and as a people.” In Christian language Fitton is describing an apocalypse, an unveiling of the world as it truly is, unfortunately for him it would seem as though his organization, Judicial Watch, is among those being most revealed.
If you are, like me, interested in a more scholarly approach to writing you would agree that the author should always be doing the simple duty of citing their sources especially when they’re attempting to write an expose. This seems to be too much to expect of Fitton though, he is quick to refer to something which may or may not have been said or written by a political opponent but he is loath to actually reference where his claim comes from. Might it be true that this public figure or that politician made some statement Fitton asserts they did? Certainly, though absent any sort of citation the claim comes across as little more than a bad faith argument intending to villainize the intended target without even allowing said target’s words to be heard or read in context.
Another issue at hand is Fitton’s use of words. The book itself is written at a 4th grade reading level, which is not a problem in itself but it becomes one when it attempts to present itself as some sort of hard-hitting expose while in reality it comes across as little more than poorly fashioned hit-piece designed to align with the November election. For example there are many instances when Fitton will refer to COVID-19 as the Wuhan virus” or else use terms like “the left” and “the far left” interchangeably with “liberals” as though there is no division within such a wide range of ideologies.
Much like Fitton’s confusion with words, Fitton also seems confused with facts. He will throw out these wild claims that appear explosive and worrisome and convincing and yet he fails to acknowledge the holes in his own reasoning. At one point he draws upon a common talking point of right-wing commentators, that the Swine Flu had a high death toll but it never prompted the same sort of reaction as COVID-19. He leaves out however that Swine Flu operated on a much smaller scale, killing some 18,000 Americans in 16 months as opposed to the 280,000 Americans killed by COVID-19 in ten months. At another point he refers to the “doomsday models” which initially projected the death of some 500,000 in the UK alone before being adjusted down to 20,000. If one were to just read this and not take two minutes to perform a Google search they would miss the fact that the number of deaths in the UK is currently triple that 20,000 number, sitting (at this writing) at 63,000.
What is perhaps most distressing though, ignoring all these issues present throughout the book, is the conclusion the book guides the reader towards: “the Left and the Far Left truly hate us [because] we… bring them to justice… This is the fight of our lives… Together, we will overcome that evil.” As someone who considers themselves a Leftist, I’m not sure if I’m honored or concerned that someone would regard me as evil. All I know is what this rhetoric leads to, it is a rhetoric that leads to the violence and political intimidation that we’ve come to expect over the past few months directed towards those who disagree. In the wrong hands this call to action can be interpreted as a call to war, which isn’t that far a leap to make when the “enemies” are being called evil.