×
FOLLOW THE WEEK ON FACEBOOK
March 18, 2014
Donald Bowers / Getty Images

Here's some free advice: If you want to be taken seriously while making a point about anything, don't go all Godwin's Law and use Hitler to make your case. Well, if you're specifically discussing World War II, or Nazis, or Hitler himself, then fine, maybe playing the Hitler card is fair game. But otherwise, it only defeats your argument.

Home Depot's billionaire co-founder Ken Langone apparently did not get that memo, as he "showed no hesitancy in invoking the Nazis" while whining to Politico about Washington's newfound interest in income inequality and economic populism.

"I hope it's not working," Langone said of the populist rhetoric. "Because if you go back to 1933, with different words, this is what Hitler was saying in Germany. You don't survive as a society if you encourage and thrive on envy or jealousy."

Langone's remark comes a couple of months after venture capitalist Tom Perkins likened the Occupy movement to a "progressive Kristallnacht" in a Wall Street Journal op-ed. One more populism/Hitler comparison and we'll have a trend. Jon Terbush

11:21 p.m. ET
Theo Wargo/Getty Images

On Monday night, Neil Diamond announced that he has been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and is retiring from touring, starting with the third leg of his 50th Anniversary tour in March. "It is with great reluctance and disappointment that I announce my retirement from concert touring," Diamond said in a statement, going on to thank his fans with a shout-out to his most famous song, "Sweet Caroline." "My thanks goes out to my loyal and devoted audiences around the world. You will always have my appreciation for your support and encouragement. This ride has been 'so good, so good, so good' thanks to you."

Diamond's touring career may be over, but he said he still plans to write and record songs, and develop new projects. Fans in Australian and New Zealand who have tickets to his canceled performances will get refunds. Parkinson's is a degenerative disease that slowly affects motor skills like walking and talking, with accompanying shaking and stiffness. Diamond said the recent onset of the disorder made it difficult to tour, and he is acting on the advice of his doctor. He turns 77 on Jan. 28. Peter Weber

10:29 p.m. ET
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

A veterans organization says it is being censored by the NFL after the league rejected its one-page ad, with the message "Please Stand," from the upcoming Super Bowl's program, saying it's too political.

"The Super Bowl game program is designed for fans to commemorate and celebrate the game, players, teams, and the Super Bowl," NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told USA Today Sports. "It's never been a place for advertising that could be considered by some as a political statement." He added that the NFL has "long supported the military and veterans and will again salute our service members in the Super Bowl with memorable on-field moments that will be televised as part of the game."

AMVETS said it has placed similar ads in official NHL and NBA programs, and its executive director, Joe Chenelly, believes his group deserves the same platform as players who are protesting police brutality by kneeling during the national anthem. The protests are "very much out of our purview," he told USA Today Sports, and the ads are part of the group's attempts to teach people about the flag and how to care for it. McCarthy said AMVETS was asked to consider other taglines, including "Please Honor Our Vets" and "Please Stand for Our Veterans," but the organization never responded, and the program had to go to the printer. Catherine Garcia

9:34 p.m. ET
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

With President Trump's blessing, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been pressuring FBI Director Christopher Wray to fire Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, but Wray has threatened to resign if McCabe is forced out, three people with direct knowledge of the matter told Axios.

Sessions told White House counsel Don McGahn that Wray is distressed by the request, Axios reports, and McGahn in turn said it's not worth losing the director, especially in the wake of Trump firing former FBI Director James Comey last year. Trump nominated Wray last June, and he previously served as deputy attorney general under former President George W. Bush. McCabe was acting director of the FBI after Comey was fired, and Trump and other Republicans want him gone because his wife ran for office as a Democrat. Catherine Garcia

9:03 p.m. ET
AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File

Naomi Parker Fraley, a former waitress who inspired the artist behind the 1943 "We Can Do It!" poster, died Saturday in Longview, Washington. She was 96.

Several people claimed to be the model for the poster, which was created for the Westinghouse Electric Corporation, but in 2016, Seton Hall University Prof. James Kimble discovered that artist J. Howard Miller was most likely inspired by a photo of Fraley that appeared in newspapers across the country. The photo showed Fraley, who worked in a Navy machine shop during World War II, standing at an industrial lathe, her hair up in polka-dotted bandana. "The women of this country these days need some icons," Fraley told People in 2016, after Kimble tracked her down. "If they think I'm one, I'm happy."

Fraley was 20 when she she started working at the machine shop, along with her younger sister, Ada, and they spent their days drilling, patching airplane wings, and riveting. The poster was only up in Westinghouse factories for a brief time, and it didn't become a feminist symbol, with the woman dubbed Rosie the Riveter, until the early 1980s, The New York Times reports. Catherine Garcia

8:07 p.m. ET
Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump on Monday, acting on recommendations by the U.S. International Trade Commission, approved imposing tariffs on solar panels and washing machines.

The administration says that by placing a tariff of 30 percent on most imported solar modules and a tariff of up to 50 percent on large residential washing machines, this will help American companies. Both tariffs will be phased out by 2022.

While Whirlpool is pleased with the news, with its chairman saying it will create manufacturing jobs, Bill Vietas, a member of the Solar Energy Industries Association and president of RBI Solar in Cincinnati, said the tariffs will hurt his industry, which has grown immensely over the past five years. "Government tariffs will increase the cost of solar and depress demand, which will reduce the orders we're getting and cost manufacturing workers their jobs," he told The Associated Press. Catherine Garcia

7:19 p.m. ET
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

On Monday, the nonprofit government watchdog group Common Cause filed two federal complaints, alleging that President Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen paid $130,000 in October 2016 to an adult film star who had an affair with Trump, and this may have been a violation of campaign finance laws.

In a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, Common Cause's campaign finance expert Paul S. Ryan wrote that "because the funds were paid for the purpose of influencing the 2016 presidential general election," this payment should have been considered a campaign expense, but was never reported.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this month that Cohen paid Stormy Daniels $130,000 shortly before the election, around the same time she stopped speaking with different journalists about an affair she said she had with Trump. Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, told In Touch and Slate about having consensual sexual encounters with Trump after she met him at a 2006 golf tournament. Cohen has denied paying Daniels, and told The Washington Post on Monday Common Cause's complaints are "baseless." Catherine Garcia

6:24 p.m. ET
Zach Gibson/Getty Images

After the Senate passed a bipartisan bill to reopen the government, the House followed Monday evening, voting 266-150 in favor of the measure and sending the legislation to President Trump's desk.

This will fund the federal government through Feb. 8, and the Children's Health Insurance Program for six years. It will also ensure federal workers receive back pay. To get Democrats on board, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) promised that immigration legislation will be brought to a vote by Feb. 8 if it's not resolved earlier. The Senate passed the bill 81-18. Catherine Garcia

See More Speed Reads