Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Dictionary Police

Today Sarah Palin put out what I can only call a very timely, well-reasoned video dissertation on last weekend's shooting and the politicization of it.

Starting, I'm guessing, with Andrea Mitchell -- here is the response:

Palin is ignorant because she misused "blood libel".

That's what you got out of this?

Nothing else she said in there is of any consequence to you people?

Come to think of it, this is just more Shut Uppery.  Time to weild The Clue Bat™.

"Blood Libel" has apparently famously used in reference to the false accusation that Jews use the blood of Christian children at Passover.

Now, "libel", which is, after all, a word, subject to rules of English Grammar --- means a false and malicious accusation for the purpose of defaming a living person.

"Blood", used here as an adjective to describe what the nature of the noun "libel" is, in this context.  The term, "blood libel" then here would clearly mean a false and malicious accusation for the purpose of defaming a living person involving blood.   In this case, the shedding of blood, or being guilty of at the very least being an accessory to murder.

This is the reason that these two words were put together to describe what has been done to Jews when they are falsely accused of using the blood of Christians.   But it is ludicrous to suggest that one cannot use the two words together, one modifying the other, to refer to similar acts purputrated on others.

My wife wears a perfume called "Red Door™".  It's a brand name, from Elizabeth Arden.   It was named for their day spas which were called "Red Door Day Spa". 

Those spas, unsurprisingly, typically have a door that is red.  Hence the name "Red Door™".

To suggest that if I paint my door red, and refer to it as a "red door" that would somehow expose ignorance on my part would be insane.

I would lay money that political figures, and just regular Joes -- have correctly used terms that were famously used for other thing to describe similar things.  Besides, it is a "living language", is it not?

The good news is that -- this means that's all they've got.   They attempt to discredit the message, which again was spot on as far as how America is supposed to work, by picking a red herring and telling everyone to focus on that (if they are "stupid" enough to watch it at all, because, after all it was just "another" "ignorant" message from Sarah Palin.  So don't watch it.  Please.  No!  Look HERE!  Look HERE!)

The most glaringly ironic observation Sarah makes her is that Gabrielle Gifford was the one who read the first amendment on the house floor last week.   This week, congressmen and others are talking about imposing  infringements on our freedom of speech in reaction to her shooting.   A pretty subjective infringement at that.

Not only does it fly in the face of the first amendment, it is implicit validation of the -- excuse me, blood libel coming from the Left.


tim said...

Spot on, Philmon.

Oh wait, not to confuse the issue with any dogs or other pets named ‘Spot‘…

Oy vey.

Isn’t this exactly what took place. Attacking people for…no other reason than to attack.

This is the antithesis of why I’m afraid for my country. Not to go all hyperbole, but this is where we’re at now? We’re using a massacre to attack our political opponents? Then further attacking them after they stick up for themselves and point out with facts the guilt lies with them?

It’s pure insanity, theatre of the absurd, lunatic fringe, bottom of the barrel crapola that really makes me concerned for where we are headed. It gets better from here?

Vanderleun has a short but poignant post about REAL “political incivility”-

tim said...


opposition; contrast: the antithesis of right and wrong.
the direct opposite (usually fol. by of or to ): Her behavior was the very antithesis of cowardly.

Note to self - must drink more coffe before posting comments.

philmon said...

Ah, sometimes you get a word lodged in your stream of thought and it blocks access to the one you want.

Coffee does seem to help dislodge such things. :-)

You were probably looking for "apothesis" ... which I myself had never heard until I just now looked up synonyms for "epitome". "Essesnce" or "core" might have worked as well.

Off to read Vanderleun.

philmon said...

Ok, Vanderleun's post was brief and powerful. Picture. 1000 words. Caption amplifies that to 5000 words.

But while there, I ran across a fantastic article from One Cʘsmos. Don't let the first paragraph throw you. He's apparently a rather quirky dude when it comes to expressing himself, but in an intentionally amusing way. It is long, and it is worthwhile.

Severian said...

Ever notice how the left can't ever ever ever argue its point without resorting to hysterics and ad hominem?

If you do stuff like break out the dictionary, they screech that "you must be in on it!!!" and call you a racist.

Funny, that. It's almost like they've got nothing else....