[lit-ideas] The war on language

  • From: "Simon Ward" <sedward@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 8 Oct 2006 18:29:12 +0100

Here's a blatant attempt to find support for something I've been bleating about.

How, exactly, do people who don't agree with the Bush administration become 
French? How does a hack on a radio station latch on to such a nonsensical 
label? It's about picking something so indistinct that it could never be 
defined as categorically wrong, and then twisting its meaning to serve a 
purpose. Pick a hazy belief that the French were lazy and too self interested 
to really fight in World War II, then mix in some vaguely sexist, vaguely 
homophobic idea that they weren't man enough to stand up to the Nazis. Then, 
make sure to add that all people who stand up to you aren't man enough to stand 
with you. Then, in some sort of linguistic example of the transitive property, 
you get the dull-edged and cockamamie logic of: if the French are weak, and the 
people who don't support your war are weak, then the people who don't support 
your war, well they must be French! Start repeating this, over and over, until 
it's yapped back to you: "The French are weak!" "Weakness is Un-American!" and 
you've got yourself a tagline for the election: "John Kerry is French!"

And there's more...


Blatently bleating

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  • » [lit-ideas] The war on language