Skip to comments.The Evil of Banality
Posted on 06/05/2013 4:24:03 AM PDT by servo1969
In a book published in 1963, Hannah Arendt immortalized an expression that since has become the signature line to describe a person who commits acts of prodigious evil simply in the process of following orders. The individual in question was Adolf Eichmann, whose trial resulted in her treatment titled, Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil. Eichmann was banal, all right; in fact, as alluded to in T. S. Eliot's famous poem, "The Hollow Men," he resembled Mister Kurtz in Joseph Conrad's chilling Heart of Darkness -- "hollow at the core." Which did not prevent him from carrying out horrific acts befitting a moral cypher whose only defense was "do not judge me."
Such a sentiment, along with a reverse formulation of Arendt's famous line, lurk beneath the responses of those called to testify before Congress to justify their behaviors in the three scandals currently being investigated by outraged Republicans as well as a smattering of concerned and perhaps embarrassed Democrats. Variations of responses that range from "I don't recall," and "I have no memory of that detail," to a simple "I don't know" pepper the testimonies of thickly credentialed functionaries whose main goal, it seems, is to barricade themselves behind pillars of paperwork that shield them from efforts to ascertain professional responsibility. Call this the Eichmann-Kurtz defense, which was manifested to a ridiculous extreme by Lois Lerner at the IRS, who proclaimed innocence of any wrongdoing -- and then took the Fifth Amendment for protection from self-incrimination.
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...
a VERY good article!!