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ROGER KIMBALL ON THE ACCURATE REPRESENTATION OF THE WORLD: A reluctance to speak the truth instills an unwillingness or even inability to see the truth.

Had the fates been more generous, one name that I feel sure would occupy a place on that escutcheon is that of Joseph Rago. Joe, who died at the shocking age of 34, was known to the world at large as a brilliant editorial writer for The Wall Street Journal. His labors there won him a Pulitzer Prize when he was still in his twenties.

For more than a decade, he was known to the readers of my magazine The New Criterion as a contributor and, towards the end of his life, as our fiction critic, a post from which he ably lived up to the poet Horace’s injunction to delight as well as instruct. I am happy to note that Joe’s parents, Nancy and Paul Rago, are with us tonight. I wish that he could be as well.

It what was perhaps his last piece for The New Criterion, Joe cast an amused though gimlet eye over the eructations of impotent puerile fury that greeted the election of Donald Trump among the literati. ‘This ages-nine-and-up coping mechanism,’ Joe wrote, ‘does capture something significant about political and literary culture, circa 2017. Too much of politics, and of human experience,’ Joe went on, ‘is being fitted into neat good-bad binaries that appeal to feelings and status, not to the accurate representation of the world.’

‘The accurate representation of the world.’ How quaint that phrase sounds in an era of fake news and the wonton trampling of truth, not least by those entrusted with its dissemination: journalists, yes, but also many educators and other unworthy custodians of the achievements of our culture.

That’s an excerpt from Roger’s acceptance speech upon receiving “the Thomas L. Phillips award at the TFAS Journalism Awards Dinner in Manhattan last week.” It dovetails remarkably well with this item at NewsBusters today: ‘The Unhoused?’ Homelessness Gets the PC Treatment at the Washington Post.

Remember the first outbreak of PC years ago? Back then it was a distant, isolated phenomenon — an exotic STD localized to college campuses. Reality, like a dose of penicillin, would take care of things. Normal people had fun changing “bald” to “follically challenged,” and “hookers” to “horizontal laborers.” Good times.

A Sept. 19 op-ed in The Washington Post harkens back to those salad days. Writing about the West Coast’s homelessness crisis, author Chris Herring uncorks this howler:

But the residents and leaders of these liberal cities are also intolerant of the unhoused.

The unhoused? Is he serious? You bet. Herring is “a PhD candidate in sociology at the University of California at Berkeley.” Any sense of humor he may have once possessed was educated out of him long ago.

In fairness, “unhoused” makes only one appearance in a long, long piece about how mean everyone is to, er, the homeless — maybe it’s a trial euphemism that he’s testing outside an academic journal for the first time.

Seems like yesterday “homeless” became the accepted liberal euphemism for vagrants, drifters, bums or, more romantically, hobos. (It was, I believe, in the 1980s. Those people disappeared the moment Bill Clinton was sworn in, not to resurface until January 2001.)

But it’s a logical progression. “Homeless” removed judgement from the description — in exactly the same way “undocumented” removes judgement from the description of illegal immigrants. “The unhoused” takes the next step by removing agency. The subjects can only be victims deprived of shelter by circumstance or the malign action of others, certainly not by their own weaknesses or poor decisions.

As they say at the Ministry of Truth, “It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words.”

DAVID HARSANYI: Dems Propose First Gun Grab Since Lexington And Concord.

As I recall, Lexington and Concord didn’t go quite as planned for the would-be gun-grabbers:

What Democrats propose can be more accurately described as “the first American gun confiscation effort since Lexington and Concord,” or some variation on that theme. Although tax dollars will be meted out in an effort to incentivize volunteers, the policy is to confiscate AR-15s, the vast majority of which have been legally purchased by Americans who have undergone background checks and never used a gun for a criminal purpose.

The “mandatory gun buyback” exemplifies the impracticality and absurdity of do-somethingism (although Biden’s proposal to ban “magazines that hold bullets”—so most guns—is also a contender!). Democrats are ready to instantaneously turn millions of otherwise law-abiding citizens into criminals overnight for refusing to adhere to a law that retroactively transformed the exercise of a constitutional right into criminality.

And they do it without any evidence that it would curtail rare mass shootings or save lives.

As I wrote last week, “mandatory buy-back” is just newspeak for “confiscation with a little sweetener.”

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Trump — or What, Exactly? Let’s compare Trump’s policies and behavior to that of prior presidents — and to his 2020 opponents’.

Not a word comes from Trump’s critics about the need for Social Security or Medicare reform to ensure the long-term viability of each — other than the Democrats’ promises to extend such financially shaky programs to millions of new clients well beyond the current retiring Baby Boomer cohorts who are already taxing the limits of the system.

To counter every signature Trump issue, there is almost no rational alternative advanced. That void helps explain the bizarre, three-year litany of dreaming of impeachment, the emoluments clause, the Logan Act, the 25th Amendment, the Mueller special-counsel investigation, Stormy Daniels and Michael Avenatti, Trump’s tax returns, White Supremacy!, Recession! — and Lord knows what next. . . .

Instead of vague socialist bombast and promises, where is the actual detailed socialist version of the Contract with America, so voters can read it, digest it, and then decide whether it is superior or inferior to the status quo since 2017? Let us see two antithetical visions of America’s future, and let the voters decide.

For those who insist that “character matters” more than policy, then, let us compare the Trump behavior in the White House since 2017 with JFK’s, Lyndon Johnson’s, and Bill Clinton’s. Let’s compare his supposed efforts to “obstruct” justice with Obama’s actual record of politicizing federal justice, intelligence, tax, and investigatory agencies.

So far, all that is something that apparently no presidential candidate wishes to do.

Plus:

Trump’s crime is that, without sanitized surgical gloves, he completely ripped the scab off what we call “journalism” and exposed a festering wound of narcissistic, mostly incompetent, and utterly partisan reportage.

Indeed, we knew what was beneath but dared not touch the scab. We had smelled the fetid pus when journalists rallied around the mythographer Dan Rather, chatted in the JournoList files, and competed to toady up to Hillary Clinton in Wikileaks’ trove of Podesta emails. Dean Baquet’s latest New York Times pep talk about the next “racist!” newspeak to follow the failed Mueller hoax was thus anticlimactic — well aside from the epidemics of #MeToo accusations not usually associated with woke, progressive journalistic professionals.

We know that the New York Times, so eager to accuse Trump and the nation at large of serial racism, is itself fond of publishing anti-Semitic cartoons and hiring those with a paper trail of racism and anti-Semitism as its editors, reporters, or editorial-board members, as we see with Sarah Jeong, Jonathan Weisman, and Tom Wright-Piersanti.

Trump did not destroy CNN or the New York Times as viable news organizations. He had nothing to do the past three years with their suicidal abandonment of ethics, professionalism, and disinterested reporting.

True.

IT ISN’T A PURCHASE IF THE SELLER DOESN’T AGREE TO IT: Among Democrats, ‘Mandatory Gun Buyback’ Plan Gains Traction.

“Mandatory buy-back” is newspeak for “confiscation with a little sweetener.”

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY, COMRADE: San Francisco Fights Crime with Euphemisms: Convicted Felons Are Now ‘Justice-Involved Persons.’

ADJUST NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: IMDb Alters Policy on Publication of Birth Names.

IMDb has revised its birth name policy and will allow industry professionals to remove their birth names in response to feedback from transgender customers and other entertainment industry leaders.

The issue arose in June after a coalition of national LGBTQ groups objected to IMDB’s continued publication of the birth names of transgender performers and people in the entertainment industry without their consent — a practice commonly called “dead-naming.” An IMDb spokesperson revealed the altered policy on Monday.

“IMDb now permits the removal of birth names if the birth name is not broadly publicly known and the person no longer voluntarily uses their birth name,” the spokesperson said.

“To remove a birth name either the person concerned or their professional industry representative simply needs to contact IMDb’s customer support staff to request a birth name removal,” the spokesperson added. “Once the IMDb team determines that an individual’s birth name should be removed — subject to this updated process — we will review and remove every occurrence of their birth name within their biographical page on IMDb.”

You will be made to care. On the other hand, give the IMDB credit for not going full Orwell:

The IMDb spokesperson also said for birth name removal requests pertaining to titles in which a person was credited on-screen as their birth name, their credited name will remain listed in the credits section of applicable IMDb name and title pages in parentheses.

“This is in order to continue providing IMDb’s hundreds of millions of customers worldwide with comprehensive information about film and TV credits, thereby preserving the factual historical record by accurately reflecting what is listed on-screen,” the spokesperson said.

And of course, the inevitable response: “SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris said Tuesday that the new policy does not go far enough.”

And the left’s culture war marches onward. As Peggy Noonan asked last month, “What Were Robespierre’s Pronouns?

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Trans English is the new common tongue — Refinery29 and GLAAD have torn up the dictionary.

“It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words.”

EVERYTHING OLD IS NEW AGAIN: “Gendered Language Like ‘Manhole’ Will Soon Be Banned From Berkeley’s City Codes,” CBS’s Sacramento affiliate reports.

The city voted Tuesday night to replace gendered terms in its municipal codes, like “manhole” and “manpower,” with gender-neutral ones like “maintenance hole” and “human effort.”

The item passed without discussion or comments and was not controversial, said Berkeley City Council member Rigel Robinson, the bill’s primary author.

“There’s power in language,” Robinson said. “This is a small move, but it matters.”

The revised city documents also will replace instances of gendered pronouns, such as “he” and “she” with “they,” according to the ordinance.

Berkeley’s municipal code currently contains mostly masculine pronouns, the office of the city manager said in a letter to the mayor and city council.

“Having a male-centric municipal code is inaccurate and not reflective of our reality,” Robinson said. “Women and non-binary individuals are just as entitled to accurate representation. Our laws are for everyone, and our municipal code should reflect that.”

That topic was mentioned in passing during Ronald Reagan’s very last radio address before announcing his candidacy for the White House way back in 1979:

In Woonsocket, Rhode Island, the City Council has ruled that from now on those metal-covered holes in our streets we’ve long called manholes will henceforth be known as person holes.

And in Missoula, Montana, a Peeping Tom ordinance is now a `Peeping Person’ law.

No one will benefit from Berkeley’s dip into the Newspeak Dictionary, except for the city’s uber-woke bureaucrats. They’ll now have yet another reason to chastise the blue collar workers who have to go down what will now be called “maintenance holes” to help keep the city’s infrastructure running. And Gaia forbid that a sewer worker slip and call them manhole covers when dealing with his boss, who is more interested in pronouns than keeping the city’s plumbing working.

Or as Victor Davis Hanson wrote a few years ago when asking why Sacramento was increasingly beguiled with high-speed rail, even as its own highways were crumbling, “It is almost as if California answers back: ‘I am too bewildered by your premodern challenges, so I will take psychological refuge in my postmodern fantasies.'”

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Planned Parenthood President Leana Wen: Not Woke Enough.

The complaints about Wen in that recent BuzzFeed article were mundane, with one glaring exception. Fundraising was down, but that shouldn’t be surprising when an organization changes from Cecile Richards – the longtime political activist, former deputy chief of staff to Nancy Pelosi, daughter of former Texas governor Ann Richards, who had run Planned Parenthood for twelve years – to a much less well-known medical doctor. Anonymous sources complained to BuzzFeed that Wen and her new hires had a lot of friction with the old staff, but that’s pretty common when leadership changes in any organization.

But then there’s this: “Two sources told BuzzFeed News that Wen also refused to use ‘trans-inclusive’ language, for example saying ‘people’ instead of ‘women’ and telling staff that she believed talking about transgender issues would ‘isolate people in the Midwest.’”

Was the straw that broke the camel’s back for Wen: her refusal to use “trans-inclusive language”? If so, that would be a remarkable illustration of how powerful the forces of political correctness and wokeness have become. If enough people in leadership of an organization either subscribe to the philosophy or fear standing against it, then no one is progressive enough to earn an exception or indulgence under the New Woke Order. No one’s deviation from the linguistic requirements can be ignored, overlooked, accepted, or forgiven. Not even the president of Planned Parenthood! 

You may not be interested in the Gleichschaltung, but the Gleichschaltung is interested in you. Even if you’re the president of the organization founded by Margaret Sanger.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: The Totalitarian ‘They.’

As Rod Dreher writes, “every once in a while a piece of journalism will appear that seems custom-made for this blog. In the case of New York Times columnist Farhad Manjoo’s latest bit, in which he calls for the abolition of gendered language. Mind you, Manoo is not a columnist for the Oberlin student daily, but the most influential newspaper in the world. He says he’s a normal suburban dad, and doesn’t mind if you call him “he.” However:

But “he” is not what you should call me. If we lived in a just, rational, inclusive universe — one in which we were not all so irredeemably obsessed by the particulars of the parts dangling between our fellow humans’ legs, nor the ridiculous expectations signified by those parts about how we should act and speak and dress and feel — there would be no requirement for you to have to assume my gender just to refer to me in the common tongue.

Right. We’re the ones who are “irredeemably obsessed” with genitalia, not the progressives who can’t stop talking about it.

* * * * * * * *

Damon Linker has a great piece about how out-in-left-field-over-the-wall-into-the-bleachers-and-halfway-to-Albuquerque liberals have become on gender in just two shakes of RuPaul’s tail. Linker points out that Manjoo is not going out on any kind of limb here. This kind of gender radicalism is now part of everyday discourse in pop culture, advertising, media discourse, and in the catechisms generated by corporate HR departments. Here’s the most interesting part:

The first thing to be said about these convictions is that, apart from a miniscule number of transgender activists and postmodern theorists and scholars, no one would have affirmed any of them as recently as four years ago. There is almost no chance at all that the Farhad Manjoo of 2009 sat around pondering and lamenting the oppressiveness of his peers referring to “him” as “he.” That’s because (as far as I know) Manjoo is a man, with XY chromosomes, male reproductive organs, and typically male hormone levels, and a mere decade ago referring to such a person as “he” was considered to be merely descriptive of a rather mundane aspect of reality. His freedom was not infringed, or implicated, in any way by this convention. It wouldn’t have occurred to him to think or feel otherwise. Freedom was something else and about other things.

The emergence and spread of the contrary idea — that “gender is a ubiquitous prison of the mind” — can be traced to a precise point in time: the six months following the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision, which declared same-sex marriage a constitutional right. Almost immediately after that decision was handed down, progressive activists took up the cause of championing transgender rights as the next front in the culture war — and here we are, just four short years later, born free but everywhere in chains.

Read the whole thing, and then check out Neo on “Language and politics: getting used to the newest Newspeak.”

It’s here that I would add the usual “All the Democrats have to do is not be crazy, and they can’t even do that” Insta-rejoinder. But what if they do win next year? They’re going to want to start implementing the material they’re previewing right now, and give it to voters good and hard, and Mencken would say. Après Trump, le déluge.

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Transgender Colorado STEM Shooter Motivated by Revenge Over Pronouns, Bullying.

Earlier: Pediatric gender clinics: We may look back and ask ‘what were we thinking?’

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: Father’s Day Updated To ‘Toxic Masculinity Awareness Day.’

Note to Snopes: This is a headline from the Babylon Bee, so it’s satire — or is it?

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Canada Embraces Divisive ‘Genocide’ Language to Describe Socioeconomic Problems.

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: NBA teams moving away from ‘owner’ title due to racial insensitivity.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: New York Times Tries to Dehumanize Unborn Babies, Calls Baby’s Heartbeat “Embryonic Pulsing.”

NARRATIVE MAINTENANCE IS HARD WORK: Seth Barrett Tillman: Orwell’s Newspeak and The Observer.

Orban was elected by the voters of Hungary. So it is difficult to see why meeting with him should be construed as an offense against democracy. One might as well posit the opposite: that failing to meet with an elected leader is a sign of contempt for normal democratic institutions. Of course, Tisdall, the editorialist, does not speak to anything like common or ordinary democracy; rather, he speaks in terms of something else—something more enlightened, more complex, and more nuanced: European democracy. The EU is a parliamentary “democracy” that lives and breathes absent anything like meaningful responsible government. What Tisdall means is that Orban—although popular with actual voters in his own country—among people who have an incentive to know precisely what Orban is up to—remains an object of suspicion among the bureaucrats in Brussels and among members of the European Parliament from countries other than Hungary. What Tisdall does not understand is that it is he who is illustrating a contempt for ordinary democracy and ordinary voters.

Oh, I think he understands.

Flashback: Donald Trump is a symptom of a new kind of class warfare raging at home and abroad.

NEWSPEAK: Blurring the line between legal and illegal immigration.

Lately, the mother of all terminology battles has been fought over descriptions of the millions of persons who are in the United States illegally. Should they be described as “illegal immigrants”? “Undocumented workers”? “Unauthorized immigrants”? Some say the appropriate term is “illegal aliens”, arguing that we tilt the discussion when we identify those who have evaded the law as “immigrants” because an immigrant, under the law, is someone who has been admitted for residence in the United States.

Both sides understand that the terms of the debate are a matter of linguistic framing. By influencing public attitudes, they can shape policy outcomes.

What most concerns me is the effort to blur the line between legal and illegal immigration. It has gained momentum as many Democrats and other liberals have categorically rejected any policy that President Trump has adopted regarding the enforcement of immigration laws. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf gave forceful expression to this sentiment when she said, “We in Oakland have a community that welcomes and honors all people, no matter where they came from — no matter how they got here.”

The latest item involving language and framing that has caught my eye appears in an article about California senator and presidential candidate Kamala Harris. Published in the May issue of The Atlantic, it is titled “Kamala Harris Takes Her Shot”.

What jumped out at me was writer Elizabeth Weil’s summary of Harris’s platform. She wrote that the platform included “a path to citizenship for immigrants”. Weil did not see fit to mention that she was referring to a proposal to benefit those who have violated immigration law. By not reporting that salient fact, Weil did the work of the immigration activists who have long sought to blur the line between legal and illegal immigration.

Yet another Democratic operative with a byline.

JUST THINK OF IT AS THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY.COM: Dictionary.com Drops Feminist Anti-Male Poem, Suggests We “Fear” Women.

The social justice verbiage laced throughout this poem automatically puts men into the “toxic masculinity” column, never talking about the positives of men, but only listing what feminists see as the negatives. It also tends to over-revere women, even suggesting we fear them as some kind of authority figure.

Dictionary.com seems to delve into these kinds of socio-political issues from time to time. In one video, a woman gives a history of the Republican party, and suggests not so subtly that people would be surprised to know that Republicans used to not be as racist as they are today.

Dictionary.com also released a video that explains how the word “slut” is actually an empowering term for women.

Related: Dictionaries as Propaganda Tools.

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Amherst flirts with Orwellian “language guide.”

Amherst’s Common Language Guide should be viewed as a salvo in the left’s fight to seize control of our language, and hence our culture and politics. The failure to make the Guide stick this time around should not be regarded as a true defeat.

Sooner or later, a college president at a relatively prestigious college will probably be okay with the issuance of a document like Amherst’s, albeit with a few edits. Indeed, sooner or later, someone who helped produce Amherst’s document may find her way into a position where she can impose her Orwellian vision.

Earlier: Villanova Mentholates The Cultural Revolution.

ADJUST NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY, COMRADE: European Parliament Issues Pamphlet Encouraging Members to Replace Words Such As ‘Mankind’ and ‘Manpower’ With ‘Humanity’ and ‘Staff.’

I wonder how the parliament’s secretariat would recommend we change the term “man-caused disasters,” coined by former Homeland Secretary Janet Napolitano to replace the term “terrorist attacks.” Napolitano says we can’t use the word “terrorist” and now the EP tells us we can no longer say “man.” “Person” is out because “the tendency has been to use it only when referring to women.” Shall we call them “artificial disasters” or “synthetic disasters?” Or should we just be politically incorrect and stick with “terrorist attacks?”

Presumably, terrorist attacks are a thing of the past in Europe, since the EU has now pivoted over to fight the far more important pronoun wars.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: ‘Bringing home the bacon:’ Idioms referencing meat may become obsolete as veganism rises.

To be fair, this is a headline from the London Independent, which doesn’t exactly have the best track record in the world when it comes to future predictions. But as Jim Treacher tweets, “These people toughed it out during the Blitz. What the hell happened?”

Somebody should write a book on that topic — and Peter Hitchens already has.

‘WOMEN’: THE WORD THAT CANNOT BE UTTERED WHEN DISCUSSING BRAS. As Tim Blair notes, “Poor Buzzfeed. Being part of the woke media, certain clear descriptive terms are no longer available to them.”

Funny how each edition of the Newspeak dictionary shrinks “progressively” ever-smaller.

PC GONE MAD: Phrase ‘Long Time No See’ Is Declared Racist.

Adjust Newspeak Dictionaries accordingly, comrade.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: NPR Wouldn’t Allow Advertisers To Call Kermit Gosnell An ‘Abortion Doctor.’

IT’S A BEAUTIFUL THING, WINSTON, THE DESTRUCTION OF WORDS: Healthline says, using the medical term ‘vagina’ is not gender-inclusive language, uses ‘front hole’ instead.

I’m looking forward to the next presentation of The Front Hole Monologues.

UPDATE: James Woods tweets, “The good news is that ‘asshole’ will still be used for the idiot who came up with this…”

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Don’t Say ‘Hey Guys!’ in The Workplace Anymore, advises CNN Money.

 You can’t just clock in and focus on your job anymore, identity politics now dictates how you introduce yourself to a room of colleagues.

Julia Carpenter, CNN Money writer specializing in gender in the workplace, listed ways to avoid accidentally misgendering a coworker.

People who “identity as non-binary, gender non-conforming or genderqueer prefer “they/them” pronouns to reflect their identity and gender expression” but “for many workplaces, making space for non-binary people is tricky, because some people may prefer certain pronouns but present themselves in a more masculine or more feminine way.” This confusion can make coworkers, “misidentify them without even realizing their mistake.”

As Thomas Sowell wrote over 20 years ago in The Vision of the Anointed, on the left’s sustained attack on “The Generic ‘He:’”

Trivial as such crusades may seem, they have been very successful in changing the way people talk in the media, in academia, and in government. Not only is the generic “he” taboo in many quarters, the speech controllers have pressed on to new conquests, attacking such words as “layman,” “craftsman,” “actress,” or “matron,” which violate their unisex view of the world, and also proscribe such phrases as “to master a language” because it uses a sex-specific word. These examples are from an official guidebook put out by the Australian government, which shows how far such crusades have spread. An American guidebook, distributed internationally, declares that there is “a perfectly scientific, completely foolproof, and highly theoretical model for avoiding sexism on the job.” As so often happens, pretensions of “science” are the last refuge of those who offer neither the evidence nor the logic that are integral to science.

The net effect of all this is that young women, especially in educational institutions where they are bombarded with radical feminist propaganda, are led to believe that every use of the generic “he” in books of the past is proof of disdain or hostility toward women, when in fact such usage simply avoided cluttering up the language or forcing writers into strained constructions and awkward phrases. In short, the anointed are helped to make yet another group feel like victims and to regard the anointed as their rescuers.

Time-Warner-CNN-HBO is rapidly going full Airstrip One. In addition to articles advising on the newest advancements in woke pronouns and gender theory, Lena Dunham is happy to play Central Scrutinizer* and dox the daylights out of any employees she overhears speaking doubleplus ungood crimethink.

Exit question: Is “Hey You Guys!” still acceptable, or is Rita Moreno the next person on the CNN dox list?

* Sorry to cross the streams between Orwell and Zappa.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: CNN calls marchers chanting ‘f*ck the police’ and throwing eggs ‘anti-hate groups.’

As a pioneering socialist once said, no enemies to the left.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: When Your ‘Gender Revolution’ Needs a Glossary It’s Time to Throw in the Towel.

In Orwell’s Soviet-inspired 1984, each successive edition of the Newspeak dictionary kept shrinking because the high priests of IngSoc believed that “the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought[.] In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it.”

But since the 21st century left’s will to power runs through victimhood, having more and more words that, if not used, will generate first “trigger warnings” and then emotional meltdowns, it helps to expand the vocabulary as much as possible.

Related: The Era of the Drama Queens: Every Crisis Is a Triumph.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Parents Are Now Raising Gender-Neutral “Theybies.”

As Jim Treacher tweets, NBC is creating “The next generation of Alex P. Keatons.”

DAVID SOLWAY TAKES A DEEP DIVE INTO THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: The Power of the Phrase: SPLC, ACLU, and ‘Hidden Persuaders.’

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Feminists Now Want to Rename Female Body Parts… Because They Were Named by Men.

And, honestly, isn’t the fact that all these guys have been basically forgotten (Kaminsky herself didn’t even know it was Fallopius and not Fallopian!) kind of feminist in and of itself? Female bodies have literally subsumed these dead, white anatomists so that, now, we don’t remember that they were people at all — they’re just lady parts. We turned some dead white guys into female sex organs — isn’t that a feminist dream come true! Come on, people!

Yes, but how can you be a proper leftist these days without considering yourself a victim?

 

 

THE PRISON-HOUSE OF POLITICAL LANGUAGE: A must read article in Quilette, about the various ways in which the political left uses the techniques of Newspeak in the real world, in Britain and in the USA, while projecting their own totalitarian motives onto their opponents. Nail on the head stuff right here:

“The US media, stocked with coastal elites who all seem to be on the same page politically (including on the issue of blacklisting those with dissenting opinion), has more or less devoted itself to daily preaching against Donald Trump for the past two years. Criticising or morally condemning Trump is hardly edgy or even a courageous act of sticking one’s head above the parapet; it is expected. Yet these people still call him a totalitarian. How can we account for this lack of self-awareness on their part?”

How dare they allow this to be published! Why, the country is just loaded with “deplorables”!

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: The Battle Over Pronouns Coming to a College Near You.

Last year, Jordan Peterson, a professor at the University of Toronto, made news when he refused to use the invented pronouns of the transgender movement as prescribed by Canadian law (see chart).

Pronouns these days are a new battleground, as recommendations admonish us all that the standard English pronouns, which traditionally distinguish she from he, him from her, are discriminatory and must now be reassigned or reinvented upon request.

Still, it’s worth asking: By changing nouns and pronouns, is one changing one’s sex? If I force you to refer to me as he when all anatomical and biological signs indicate I’m a she, have I thereby consolidated a new identity? Does saying it make it so? But then, if physical reality has no traction, why should a “woman” get outraged at the uninvited display of a “penis” in one setting (such as a late-night meeting in a hotel room), but not at precisely the same intrusion in another setting (say, a bathroom or shower room now accessible to all those who “identify as female”)?

You may not be interested in the pronoun wars, but the pronoun wars are interested in you.

(Via Newsalert.)

NIALL FERGUSON IN THE BOSTON GLOBE: Enough With The Hating On White Men.

“Masculinity, not ideology, drives extremist groups,” was another recent headline that caught my eye, this time in The Washington Post.

Got it.

I have had to listen to a variation on this theme rather too much in recent weeks. Last month I organized a small conference of historians who I knew shared my interest in trying to apply historical knowledge to contemporary policy problems. Five of the people I invited to give papers were women, but none was able to attend. I should have tried harder to find other female speakers, no doubt. But my failure to do so elicited a disproportionately vitriolic response.

Under a headline that included the words “Too white and too male,” The New York Times published photographs of all the speakers, as if to shame them for having participated. Around a dozen academics — male as well as female — took to social media to call the conference a “StanfordSausageFest.” . . .

I was raised to believe in the equal rights of all people, regardless of sex, race, creed, or any other difference. That the human past was characterized by discrimination of many kinds is not news to me. But does it really constitute progress if the proponents of diversity resort to the behavior that was previously the preserve of sexists and racists?

Publishing the names and mugshots of conference speakers is the kind of thing anti-Semites once did to condemn the “over-representation” of Jewish people in academia. Terms such as “SausageFest” belong not in civil academic discourse but on urinal walls.

What we see here is the sexism of the anti-sexists; the racism of the anti-racists. In this “Through the Looking Glass” world, diversity means ideological homogeneity. “The whitesplaining of history is over,” declared another heated article by Satia last week. Hideous Newspeak terms such as “whitesplaining” and “mansplaining” are symptoms of the degeneration of the humanities in the modern university. Never mind the facts and reason, so the argument runs, all we need to know — if we don’t like what we hear — are the sex and race of the author.

Well, that’s how racists think, and academia is a cesspit of racism. Plus:

The process of indoctrination starts early. My six-year-old son stunned his parents the other day when we asked what he had been studying at school. He replied that they had been finding out about the life of Martin Luther King Jr. “What did you learn?” I asked. “That most white people are bad,” he replied.

This is America in 2018.

You want more Trump? This is how you get more Trump.

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE, THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY, AND THE MEMORY HOLE: Temple University Faculty Members Are Trying to Erase the ‘Gender Binary System.’

Shades of Chesterton’s Fence — perhaps Philadelphia’s Temple University should make sure their students know some of the basics before crafting the Brave New World.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary Changes Definition Of ‘Assault Rifle’ After Parkland Shooting.

It’s been politicized for years, but that seems to have accelerated post-2016: Why Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary is Trolling Trump.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY:

Eric had everything that transgender activists say they want — and still, he killed himself. The poor kid was plainly tormented, but doesn’t that indicate that the entire world can rearrange itself to suit what these people want to believe about themselves, and it still won’t be enough? What more could have been done for him?

The thing that jumped out even more about this story is this: the Miami Herald chose to call this male teenager who had not yet transitioned “she”. This might seem like a small thing, but it in fact is a massive one. In this case, the media is attempting to change the way we use language, which is to say, trying to change at a foundational level how we think.

We cannot conform to this lie. We cannot. The stakes are enormous. You change a people’s language, and you change the way they construe reality. George Orwell addressed this point in his famous essay “Politics and the English Language.” Here:

I have not here been considering the literary use of language, but merely language as an instrument for expressing and not for concealing or preventing thought. Stuart Chase and others have come near to claiming that all abstract words are meaningless, and have used this as a pretext for advocating a kind of political quietism. Since you don’t know what Fascism is, how can you struggle against Fascism? One need not swallow such absurdities as this, but one ought to recognise that the present political chaos is connected with the decay of language, and that one can probably bring about some improvement by starting at the verbal end.

The Miami Herald — along with almost all our media today — insist on calling a thing what it is not, for entirely political reasons. I could understand using the feminine pronoun if Eric Verbeeck had completed his transition. I wouldn’t agree with it, but I could understand it. But Eric was still legally named Eric, and had only begun to transition. Yet here are major English language newspapers destroying the language to accommodate a politically correct mental condition. What they’re doing is accustoming their readership to accepting as real and true the claim of a mentally ill teenage male that he is in fact a female.

Read the whole thing.

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: NYT Journalist Sounds Off on College Campus Vocabulary.

Students on today’s college campuses are being turned into “wusses,” according to New York Times journalist Jeremy Peters, who spoke candidly on “Morning Joe” Thursday.

The school’s war on words is partly to blame.

“That term ‘microaggression,’ that you are actually wounding someone, it’s totally changed the way that we interact with one another, and really, I think made wusses out of our college kids,” Peters said.

Would that Peters was correct: Antifa Shut Down a Planned Debate Between Yaron Brook and Sargon of Akkad at the King’s College.

PRIME MINISTER ZOOLANDER ORDERS YOU TO UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Justin Trudeau interrupts woman to tell her to use ‘peoplekind’ instead of ‘mankind’ because ‘it’s more inclusive.’

I’ll let the great Doctor Dalrymple speak for me on this issue. Or to put it another way: No.

Related:


Heh, indeed.™

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: “God will no longer be referred to as He or Him in the Episcopal Church Diocese of Washington, D.C., which passed a resolution last week barring all use of masculine pronouns when referring to the Almighty. They will be updating their Book of Common Prayer as a result.”

PASS THE DUTCHIE — AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY — ON THE LEFT-HAND SIDE: Marijuana: is it time to stop using a word with racist roots?

OH MY PEOPLE!   NewSpeak in 2018.

HAVING SOLVED ALL OF ITS OTHER PROBLEMS, New York phases out ‘ladies and gentlemen’ greetings on the subway in favor of politically correct gender-neutral terms including ‘passengers’ and ‘riders.’

Comrade de Blasio instructs all Inner and Outer Party members and groundhogs to update Newspeak Dictionaries accordingly.

IT’S TIME TO UPDATE THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY AGAIN, COMRADE. Female, male or non-binary: California legally recognizes a third gender on identification documents.

Perhaps Chelsea Handler can use that as her defense against misgendering Dana Rohrabacher. She? I meant non-binary, honest!

 

OOF: Texans owner Bob McNair on anthem protests: ‘We can’t have the inmates running the prison.’

Historically, the phrase has always been “we can’t have the inmates running the asylum,” which is much less racially loaded, and in this case, would have suggested the NFL as America’s collective funny farm rather than its penal colony. It’s the difference between North Dallas Forty and American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson.

Of course, referring to “the inmates running the asylum” would have likely triggered the SJW crowd nearly as much. But hey, not my job to defend McNair; the NFL worked very hard to alienate guys like me who want to keep politics out of sports. They’re now fully in bed with the side of the aisle that believes the teams who don’t hire Colin Kaepernick are led by plantation owners, have Bletchley Park-level grievance detectors and continually update the Newspeak Dictionary. The “fun” will be increasing exponentially from here on in, Roger Goodell & company.

TIME TO UPDATE THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY AGAIN, AIRSTRIP ONE: “The government has said the term ‘pregnant woman’ should not be used in a UN treaty because it ‘excludes’ transgender people…Yet in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office submission, Britain opposes the term ‘pregnant woman’ because it may ‘exclude transgender people who have given birth’. The suggested term is ‘pregnant people.’”

Good to know, and thanks. But personally, I’m fine with the old phrase.

COMRADE, IT IS TIME TO UPDATE YOUR NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY ONCE AGAIN. AP Lingo Police: Use ‘Gender Confirmation’ Surgery for Transgenders.

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MORPHED INTO THE MINISTRY OF TRUTH SO SLOWLY, I HARDLY EVEN NOTICED: AP Now Calling Illegal Aliens “Undocumented Citizens.”

Update Newspeak Dictionaries accordingly.

CHANGE THE LANGUAGE, CHANGE THE CULTURE IS A TOOL BOTH SIDES CAN USE: “Staff at the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) have been told to avoid using the term climate change in their work, with the officials instructed to reference ‘weather extremes’ instead.”

Curiously, the editors of the Newspeak Dictionary disapprove of this update.

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Oregon district to drop ‘Lynch’ from school names due to ‘racial implications:’

According to The Oregonian, the schools were named for the family which originally had donated land for the schools over a century ago, but Superintendent Paul Coakley says “many newer families coming into the district associate the name with America’s violent racial history.”

“There were an increasing amount of questions and some complaints from families of color around the name,” Coakley said. Although “there is no connection between the Lynch family and the practice associated with the term,” he said the name has still “been a disruption for some students.”

“Disruption?” Huh – Superintendent Coakley spelled “opportunity for students to learn about the past and put away false assumptions” incorrectly.

ANDY McCARTHY: ‘A Word of Truth’ About Linda Sarsour’s ‘Jihad.’

I’m so old, I can remember when the left still openly stated that jihad was a euphemism for terror. But hey, the Newspeak Dictionary was due for an update, anyhow.

TO HELL IN A HANDMAID’S BASKET: Veteran Hollywood composer Boris Zelkin has a lengthy essay on Hulu’s new remake of The Handmade’s Tale, starring longtime former Mad Men actress Elisabeth Moss:

While Atwood presents her tale as occurring in the United States, and the buzz surrounding the release of the Hulu series implies that her vision is timely for America today, in truth, the dystopia she posits has a significantly higher chance of becoming reality in Europe. After all, Europe is the place where trust in and over-reliance upon centralized power, declining birthrates, and an appeasement of an unyielding worldview―the one that actually inspired The Handmaid’s Tale―are all threatening quickly to overturn what was once the font of liberalism and birthplace of the enlightenment into a religiously dystopian and morally bankrupt society.

I could understand the impetus to remake the Handmade’s Tale a bit more if a traditional conservative such as Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio was in the White House. But it’s awfully zany to believe a theocracy is just around the corner, when the current president is a rake who declared that dodging STDs while sleeping around was “my personal Vietnam,” and bragged that he could grab models and actresses “by the p***y,” language that would have been perfectly acceptable to the left if his last name was Clinton, Kennedy, Beatty, or Flint, and he had a (D) after it. Not to mention our current First Lady, who had a previous career posing nude as a model and later, in bikini-clad cheesecake shots on the wing of her husband’s private jet.

And note this:

Of the most wretched and evil characters in modern literature, Atwood’s Aunt Lydia places at the top. She is the apologist voice and cheerleader for the Handmaid’s dystopia. When not presiding over the ‘Salvaging’ of women – hanging them in Harvard Square (a mass execution of women in a public place…reminiscent of the Al Qaeda soccer field executions), she’s busy explaining why the women’s oppression isn’t really oppression at all, but a freedom from male oppression. She argues that the new mores and constricting dress are, in fact, a form of freedom:

“Now we walk along the same street, in red pairs, and no man shouts obscenities at us, speaks to us, touches us. No one whistles.

There is more than one kind of freedom, said Aunt Lydia. Freedom to and freedom from. In the days of anarchy, it was freedom to. Now you are being given freedom from. Don’t underrate it.” —Aunt Lydia

Lydia argues that with the correct modification of mores and dress the oppressed women are actually freer than they were when they were always worried about the unwelcome sexual advances of men. This distorted narrative, that correct dress and behavior will lead to a freedom from assault is currently being played out in Europe.

In response to the rapes and sexual assaults that occurred in Europe over the New Year’s celebrations and at other times, politicians, many of whom are female and self-described feminists suggested that women, the prospective and actual victims of rape, need to modify their behavior to avoid the rape. These suggested behavior modifications range from walking at arms length from migrants, to walking in pairs (similar to the Handmaids who were always to walk in twos), and to avoiding provocative dress. Most recently a Paris newspaper reported that there are areas of East Paris where women fear to walk alone for fear of being harassed and treated like prostitutes by men. One of the women interviewed states:

There are insults, incessant remarks. The atmosphere is agonizing, to the point of having to modify our movements and our clothes. Some even gave up going out.

What we’re starting to see in Europe is Lydia’s the notion of Freedom From. If a woman wants freedom from assault in today’s Europe she is being told by her female feminist leaders that she must act and dress a certain way.

A decade after being known as Al Gore’s campaign advisor on earth tones and all things alpha-male, and A few years before her spectacular meltdown as an ISIS truther, feminist icon Naomi Wolf was decidedly pro-burka in a piece for the Sydney Morning Herald headlined, “Behind the veil lives a thriving Muslim sexuality:”

She observes, “It is not that Islam suppresses sexuality, but that it embodies a strongly developed sense of its appropriate channelling — toward marriage, the bonds that sustain family life, and the attachment that secures a home.” There was “demureness and propriety” outside of the home, “but inside, women were as interested in allure, seduction and pleasure as women anywhere in the world.”

As Robert Spencer wrote in response, “How interesting that the same things that Western feminists have scoffed at for decades — ‘marriage, the bonds that sustain family life, and the attachment that secures a home’ — become warmly appealing when they see them in the Islamic world.”

And then there’s Lydia’s whole “Freedom from” riff.

“Freedom from Fear” was the Newspeak-style cornerstone of how FDR converted the negative rights of the laissez-faire Constitution (or as Lydia would say, those “days of anarchy”) into the big government Leviathan of the New Deal. Or as Orrin Judd of the conservative Brothers Judd Blog and book review site asked in 1999:

Is it possible that the History of the 20th Century can be explained by simple reference to a change in prepositions?  That is the gist of the epiphany that struck me while watching David M. Kennedy on Booknotes (C-SPAN).  He and Brian Lamb were discussing the fact that this book is part of the Oxford History of the United States joining James McPherson’s excellent one-volume history of the Civil War, Battle Cry of Freedom : The Civil War Era (1988).  Suddenly, the switch from “of Freedom” to “Freedom from”, in the respective titles, struck me as emblematic of the pivotal change of  emphases in the Modern world.  The history of America from Plymouth Rock until the Crash was essentially the story of Man’s struggle for Freedom, but Freedom in a positive sense, Freedom to do things–to worship, to speak, to gather, etc.  Thus, McPherson’s book details the great convulsion of the 19th Century, the Civil War and the struggle to free the slaves–a struggle to expand freedom.  But Kennedy, charting the great 20th Century convulsion,  has it exactly right, the importance of the responses to the Depression by both Hoover and Roosevelt lay in their decision to elevate a negative idea of Freedom, freedom from want, from hunger, from “the vicissitudes of life” above, and against, the traditional American ideal of republican Liberty.  This shift from a government aimed at protecting Freedom to one designed to provide Security is the single most important thing that happened in 20th Century America.

Finally, in a contradiction so big even Newsweek could see it, “there’s something simply too intriguing not to address about Moss’s lifelong devotion to Scientology and her new role as a character who resists accepting a regime’s ideologies and strict governance as status quo:”

In Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, Offred and other fertile women cannot walk alone in the United States; they must abide by the stringent ruling of a far-right regime that has taken over what’s left of the nation. She dreams of what her life could be like if she managed to successfully escape, leaving behind the followers of a religion that often resembles an oppressive and volatile cult. In actuality, she’s complicit in the organization’s control and terror over the country, following along with its rules, partaking in the indoctrination of its newest captured members and killing those deemed immoral.

Of course, Offred’s plight is only fictional: Elisabeth Moss, who plays the protagonist in Hulu’s adaption of the Margaret Atwood novel, doesn’t seem to have any of the same struggles as a Scientologist. A member of the controversial church her entire life, the 34-year-old maintains a quiet relationship with Scientology in the public eye and has avoided the topic entirely along her press tour promoting the new show, which released its fourth episode Wednesday night.

All of which is why, as Charlotte Allen recently noted in the L.A. Times, “We’re Living The Handmaid’s Tale Now, But Not The Way Feminists Think.”

DECADENT FOLLOWER OF GOLDSTEINISM RESISTS NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Chelsea Manning — ‘Man’ & Masculine Pronouns Should Not Be Illegal.

Related: Less than 20 percent of Americans said they would be open to dating a transgender person.

You will be made to care, to coin a phrase.

Update: “Since gender is a social construct, why aren’t all sexual preferences discriminatory?”, Ben Shapiro asks on Twitter.

 

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: New York Times Refuses To Use Term ‘Female Genital Mutilation’ Because It’s ‘Culturally Loaded.’

GEORGE ORWELL, CALL YOUR OFFICE: Los Angeles Times Op-Ed Claims Sanctuary Cities ‘Keep Crime Down,’ Jack Dunphy notes.

The MSM may have eliminated the phrase “illegal aliens” from their style guides, which increasingly resemble Winston Smith’s Newspeak Dictionary, but the rest of us haven’t.

DISPATCHES FROM THE INTERSECTION OF THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE AND THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: “Seeking ‘gender inclusivity,’ [University of Minnesota] sheds homecoming king and queen titles. Two students, regardless of gender, will be homecoming ‘royalty’ starting this fall.”

Scientists will quickly discover the shortest period of time measurable when the students crowned as “royalty” will be ordered to check their privilege.

INDEPENDENT CINEMAS IN THE US TO SHOW 1984 AS TRUMP PROTEST:

“Orwell’s novel begins with the sentence, ‘It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen,'” reads a statment on the project’s website. “Less than one month into the new presidential administration, theater owners collectively believe the clock is already striking thirteen. Orwell’s portrait of a government that manufactures their own facts, demands total obedience, and demonizes foreign enemies, has never been timelier.”

“The endeavor encourages theaters to take a stand for our most basic values: freedom of speech, respect for our fellow human beings, and the simple truth that there are no such things as ‘alternative facts’.

Well, other than the fact that Orwell was predicting how Communism and its degradation of language would eventually engulf the UK (and just offscreen, America). Speaking of which, ctrl-f on the above article for “Ingsoc” brings up zero results. Oh, and by the way, haven’t we bern here before? I think we’ve been here before.

REX MURPHY: THERE ARE FASCISTS ON CAMPUS. PROTESTERS DON’T REALIZE IT’S THEM, NOT MILO YIANNOPOULOS:

I suggest, as a corollary to Orwell’s prescient observation that (I’m paraphrasing) some things are so stupid that only an intellectual could believe them, that should you seek stupidity in depth and a full lock on all mental development, enroll in a prestige high-fee North American liberal university. Further, I hold that whatever debates may be underway about the targets of Orwell’s dystopian Nineteen Eighty-Four, the modern university is the only institution that has taken that noble work for use as a manual.

Oh, they’re not the only institution who use it as a how-to guide; the previous administration and the DNC-MSM view it that way as well, but then Obama was infinitely more suited to being the guy who hectors his fellow socialists in the faculty lounge than actually being president of the United States. And as Noah Rothman of Commentary tweeted on Friday, “Wait until everyone in Washington buying 1984 and Animal Farm find out they’re about communism.”

RIP, JOHN HURT: Bafta-winning actor dies aged 77.

Not least of his roles was starring in the definitive film version of Orwell’s 1984, a mediation on where socialism and the concomitant road to serfdom ultimately lead.

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STOP! IN THE NAME OF THE PRONOUN POLICE! “Queer Activist Arrested for Murder, Friend Insists He Goes By ‘They,’” and Berkeley newspaper updates story accordingly:

Berkeleyside, a local independent news outlet, rushed a story to the presses on Friday, but it had to issue an important correction. Reportedly, the suspected murderer would rather be called by the pronoun “they,” as opposed to “he.”

Facing murder charges is nothing compared to being “misgendered,” apparently. (A later update would clarify Gomez’s age at 22.)

Police have identified the wanted person as 24-year-old Pablo Gomez Jr. of North Hollywood. According to Gomez Jr.’s Facebook page, they are a UC Berkeley student who lives in Berkeley. [A friend contacted Berkeleyside after publication to say that Gomez Jr. uses the pronoun “they.” This story has been updated.]

As if this note were not enough, the article also included a correction statement at the bottom.

This story was updated after publication to reflect Gomez Jr.’s preferred pronoun, according to a friend who contacted Berkeleyside.

Time to update the Newspeak Dictionary again, comrade.

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‘WE’RE TEACHING UNIVERSITY STUDENTS LIES’ – AN INTERVIEW WITH DR. JORDAN PETERSON:

My primary interest has always been the psychology of belief. Partly religious belief, and ideology as a sub-category of religious belief. One of Jung’s propositions was that whatever a person values most highly is their god. If people think they are atheistic, it means is they are unconscious of their gods. In a sophisticated religious system, there is a positive and negative polarity. Ideologies simplify that polarity and, in doing so, demonize and oversimplify. I got interested in ideology, in a large part, because I got interested in what happened in Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, the Cultural Revolution in China, and equivalent occurrences in other places in the world. Mostly I concentrated on Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. I was particularly interested in what led people to commit atrocities in service of their belief. The motto of the Holocaust Museum in Washington is “we must never forget.” I’ve learned that you cannot remember what you don’t understand. People don’t understand the Holocaust, and they don’t understand what happened in Russia. I have this course called “Maps of Meaning,” which is based on a book I wrote by the same name, and it outlines these ideas. One of the things that I’m trying to convince my students of is that if they had been in Germany in the 1930s, they would have been Nazis. Everyone thinks “Not me,” and that’s not right. It was mostly ordinary people who committed the atrocities that characterized Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.

Part of the reason I got embroiled in this [gender identity] controversy was because of what I know about how things went wrong in the Soviet Union. Many of the doctrines that underlie the legislation that I’ve been objecting to share structural similarities with the Marxist ideas that drove Soviet Communism. The thing I object to the most was the insistence that people use these made up words like ‘xe’ and ‘xer’ that are the construction of authoritarians. There isn’t a hope in hell that I’m going to use their language, because I know where that leads.

Read the whole thing.

(Via SDA.)

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DAVID SOLWAY ON BUILDING THE GULAG, WESTERN STYLE.

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DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Rutgers student fired from campus newspaper after writing ‘illegal alien’ in column.

“College: an oasis of totalitarianism in a desert of freedom,” as Iowahawk would say.

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DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Pronouns, Ordinary People, and the War over Reality — Do not dismiss the pronominal wars as nonsense or assume that its warriors are merely daft.

Read the whole thing.

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US NAVY WRITES LATEST UPDATES TO NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY:

And the same word-blind stupidity is spreading to our armed forces. As of last week, the U.S. Navy is dropping all job titles that include the word “man.” A chief yeoman will become just a chief. “Fire Controlmen” will become nondescript “Petty Officers.” To avoid insult, “sailors will no longer be identified by their job title,” says the Navy Times; the titles “airman, fireman, constructionman and hospitalman” will be “replaced by job codes”; “B320” or “B450” or some other colorless non-word.

All this because no one has told Navy secretary, Ray Mabus, that the suffix “man” does not necessarily mean male.

And all this while the size and readiness of the military are plummeting to pre–Second World War levels. To boot, all this during the same week that Russia threatened to shoot down American planes over Syria; an implicit threat from Russia that it’s ready to go to war with us over Middle East hegemony. This just months after the U.S. did nothing in response to Iran’s navy’s capturing and humiliating ten American sailors (seamen?). This after many, many implicit and explicit red lines have been crossed in Syria, Ukraine, and the South China sea without any meaningful American reaction.

Better dead than rude.

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DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE. Columbia Student: I Was Reported to Gender-Based Misconduct Office for Calling Myself Handsome.

And yes, “the Gender-Based Misconduct Office” really does sound like a cubicle farm deep in the basement of the Ministry of Information.

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(Via Anna Z.)

DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: “It’s not possible to satirize the reign of political correctness on campus. Today’s satire is tomorrow’s diktat. John Leo takes note of the latest dispatch from the education apocalypse at Princeton and mischievously gets in the spirit.”

Read the whole thing.

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DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Ithaca College Professor Stopped Teaching About Sexual Violence Because Students Complained:

Plante is one of many academics who increasingly find themselves walking on eggshells to avoid offending their students. Some law school professors have stopped teaching rape law due to complaints from students who claim the subject is traumatizing—even though educating students about this important topic should be more important than making everybody in class comfortable all of the time.

If professors want to warn their students before discussing particularly disturbing subjects, that’s fine. But it’s concerning that strenuous objection from the students is leading academic to stop teaching these subjects entirely.

And I hate to say this, but it’s undeniable: Plante’s experience makes me wonder if some students are feigning trauma in order to skip class, readings, and assignments. “This triggers me” is the new “my dog ate my homework.”

And thus, knowledge passed on to future generations, much like successive editions of 1984’s Newspeak Dictionary, becomes ever smaller. Tom Wolfe promised us the 21st century would the era of “The Great Relearning,” but in the race between those who wish to preserve mankind’s knowledge and those who want to toss it all away, the airbrush artists are currently winning.

DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Staff Name Tags at Vanderbilt Include ‘Preferred Gender Pronouns:’

Pronouns have become a contentious issue lately as people with niche gender identities have invented new pronouns to refer to themselves, like ze, xyr, and vis.

According to a university spokesperson, in response to student interest, the school gave staff of the Dean of Students Office the option to include their preferred pronouns on their name tags, which are sometimes worn during major events like move-in day.

Update Newspeak Dictionaries accordingly.

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DISPATCHES FROM THE EDUCATION APOCALYPSE: Overpriced Fancypants Vanderbilt University Festoons Campus With Absurd ‘Ze, Zir, Zirs’ Pronoun Posters.

Photo of the latest additions to the Newspeak Dictionary at link.

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Related: West Virginia University: Calling Someone The ‘Wrong’ Prounoun Is A Title IX Violation.

WAS IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY AND IF BILL CLINTON IS A RAPIST, THAT DOESN’T ‘MAKE HIM A BAD FEMINIST,’ Wonkette editor Rebecca Schoenkopf exalts, learning to love both Big Brother – and Big Sister.

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GEORGE ORWELL, CALL YOUR OFFICE: Actual headline at the London Daily Mail: “How Harry Potter can make you hate Donald Trump: Study finds J.K. Rowling books made people more tolerant and lowered their rating of Republican nominee.”

Emphasis, mine. If you’re “more tolerant,” why would you “hate” a political figure you disagree with, instead of attempting a bit of empathy to understand both what makes him tick, and what his supporters admire about him?

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MICHAEL BARONE: George Orwell, Call Your Office.

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UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: New Progressive Media Lunacy: ‘Terrorist’ is a Biased Word.

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UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: In our brave, new world, the proper use of English is now a microagression.

But isn’t bitching about being micro-aggressed itself a micro-aggression?

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LATEST EDITION OF NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY TO BE DELAYED PUBLICATION. Words Matter: House Orders Library of Congress to Keep ‘Illegal Alien’ Designation.

IT’S COME TO THIS: Defense Secretary Ponders How to Change ‘Unmanned’ Job Titles to Gender-Neutral Wording.

Better start with the White House, which has been effectively unmanned since January of 2009. Update Newspeak Dictionaries accordingly.

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DISPATCHES FROM THE MINISTRY OF TRUTH: Chicago Students Now Required To Adopt Transgender Newspeak.

Your kids will be made to care.

TIME TO UPDATE YOUR NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES: “I’m not sure, but I suspect that once upon a time ‘juvenile delinquent’ was a liberal euphemism for ‘young criminal.’ As often happens, however, eventually even the euphemism is thought to be too harsh, and so a better one has to be found. And so one has: This Obama-administration press release yesterday talked a lot about ‘justice-involved youth.'”

Read the whole thing.

While nobody outside of the Ministry of Truth is better at euphemisms “created or saved” than this Orwellian administration, even for the Team Obama, that’s one “man-caused disaster” of a “workplace violence” euphemism, which really needs to be dispatched on its own “overseas contingency operation” stat!

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GEORGE ORWELL, CALL YOUR OFFICE: Library of Congress cancels ‘illegal aliens’ subject heading.

Adjust your edition of the Newspeak Dictionary accordingly.

INMATES RUNNING THE ASYLUM: Western Washington University Demand Power to Hire/Fire Staff & Change Spelling:

Student activists at Western Washington University, a public university in Bellingham, Washington, have presented a list of demands that go much further than those of students at other universities in the rash of student protests during the 2015/16 school year. The activist group called the “Student Assembly for Power and Liberation” presented a list of demands to help the campus’ oppressed persxns (the “x” is not a typo that’s how they spell it on their document). Their demands include the creation of an entirely new school as well as hiring/firing power, and a student committee to discipline the “oppressive behavior” of faculty and staff.

It’s the Lxrd xf the Flies meets Xrwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Fxur — their versixn xf the Newspeak Dictixnary shxuld be awesxme!

 

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: Every modern revolutionary movement has sought to change the language. Campus leftists are hardly the first.

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: “Let’s banish the term ‘gun control’: the better expression is ‘gun safety,'” claims the New York Times’ Nick Kristof in full Ministry of Truth mode.

I’m not sure which is crazier — reinventing the language, or “a moral sanction against gun metaphors similar to the ‘N’ word,” as one of Chris Matthews’ guests proposed immediately after Tucson.

PC INSANITY RUN AMOK, AMOK, AMOK:

In what many are panning as ludicrous, the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) has come out with a list of words/chants/actions that they have decided are both offensive and disrespectful to other students, players, and officials during athletic events.

Here are just a few of my favorites … but will give you the link so you can chose your own top five.

  1. Singing the song “Na-Na-Na-Na/Na-Na-Na-Na/Hey-hey/Goodbye.”
  2. “Booing of any kind” (keep in mind, this is at sporting events).
  3. “Push it, push it, push it” (someone better notify Salt-N-Pepa).
  4. Waving arms or making movements or sudden noises in an attempt to distract an opponent” (Yes, you read that correctly; The Wave = Bad).
  5. Chanting “U-S-A, U-S-A, U-S-A.”

Still, though, it sort of makes sense; as Obama noted in his State of the Union last night, America has solved all of its other problems, so we can finally begin the precision fine-tuning of language to avoid hurt feelings, micro-aggressions, and even micro-micro-aggressions. Which edition of the Newspeak Dictionary are we on these days?

(H/T: James Lileks.)

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON ON Politics and What Remains of the English Language:

What Has Happened to Language?

This tiny vocabulary sampling reflects another recent epidemic of victimhood, as the English language is further squeezed and massaged to create reality from fantasy.

First, over a half-century of institutionalized equal opportunity has not led to an equality of result. Particular self-identified groups feel collectively that they are less well off than others and are bewildered that this is still possible, since they can point to no law or custom that precludes their opportunity by race, class, or gender. Therefore, inventing a vocabulary of grievances is far more effective in gaining concessions than self-criticism and self-reliance are in winning parity.

Second, in an affluent, leisured and postmodern society of $300 Jordan-label sneakers that sell out in hours, big-screen televisions at Walmart that become prizes for warring consumers on Black Friday, and over 50% of the population exempt from income taxes, it is becoming harder to define, in the material sense, oppression-driven victimhood. In such a world, even multi-billionaire Oprah has difficulty finding discrimination and so becomes reduced to whining about a perceived snub in a Swiss boutique that sells six-figure purses. Language is pressed into service to create victims where there are few, but where many are sorely needed, psychologically — and on the chance such a prized status might lead to a profitable trajectory otherwise impossible by passé notions of work and achievement.

It’s doubleplusgood; read the whole thing.

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ADJUST NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: Hillary hammers ‘obsession’ with the words ‘radical Islamic terrorism’ as she insists ‘Muslims … have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism.’

UPDATE: Naturally, Trump goes the polar opposite, though equally extreme direction. “Trump won’t rule out special IDs, warrantless searches for Muslims,” Allahpundit writes, adding, “I can’t tell if he’s serious or if this is a sort of game being played between him and a reporter, Hunter Walker, who knows how Trump operates rhetorically. Note that it’s Walker, not Trump, who floats the idea of special IDs and warrantless searches, picking up from what Trump said this past week about closing down mosques.”

IF YOU’RE HEARING DOG WHISTLES, YOU’RE THE DOG: MSNBC Host: When Republicans Say The Phrase ‘Hard Worker’ They’re Being Racist.

Huh — I thought “lazy” was the racist word, besides words like “golf” and “Chicago.” Man, the pages you have to keep ripping out of your Newspeak Dictionary as the updates come in.

(Headline via James Taranto.)

 

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: UWM says ‘politically correct’ is no longer politically correct — the phrase ‘politically correct’ is now a microaggression according to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Related: English Schools Instructed to Ban ‘Sexist’ Words Like ‘Cupcake.’

“It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words,” as Syme bragged to Winston.

(Via Maggie’s Farm.)

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: Legendary linguistic scholar Gwyneth Paltrow replaces the word “divorce” with the “California dreamin’” phrase “conscious uncoupling:” “Is ‘Conscious Uncoupling’ Really the Path to Self-Fulfillment?”

THE LEFT’S DILEMMA: THERE ARE SO MANY THINGS TO BE OFFENDED BY, AND SO LITTLE TIME TO AGONIZE ABOUT EACH, George Will writes:

Autumn, season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, also is the time for sensitivity auditors to get back on — if they will pardon the expression — the warpath against the name of the Washington Redskins. The niceness police at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office have won court approval of their decision that the team’s name “may disparage” Native Americans. We have a new national passion for moral and historical hygiene, a determination to scrub away remembrances of unpleasant things, such as the name Oklahoma, which is a compound of two Choctaw words meaning “red” and “people.”

Connecticut’s state Democratic Party has leapt into the vanguard of this movement, vowing to sin no more: Never again will it have a Jefferson-Jackson Day dinner. Connecticut Democrats shall still dine to celebrate their party’s pedigree but shall not sully the occasions by mentioning the names of two slave owners. Because Jefferson-Jackson Day dinners have long been liturgical events for Democrats nationwide, now begins an entertaining scramble by states’ parties — Georgia’s, Missouri’s, Iowa’s, New Hampshire’s, and Maine’s already have taken penitential actions — to escape guilt by association with the third and seventh presidents.

The Washington Post should join this campaign for sanitized names, thus purging the present of disquieting references to the past. The newspaper bears the name of the nation’s capital, which is named for a slave owner who also was — trigger warning — a tobacco farmer. Washington, D.C., needs a new name. Perhaps Eleanor Roosevelt, D.C. She had nothing to do with her husband’s World War II internment of 117,000 persons of Japanese descent, two-thirds of whom were native-born American citizens.

Hey, our students’ history books, like Oceania’s Newspeak Dictionary, aren’t going to shrink themselves.

DISPATCHES FROM THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY: The Insanity of ‘Gender Neutral’ Pronouns.

DEMOCRATS FOOLISHLY PURGE THEIR HEROES: By applying today’s standards, Presidents Jefferson, Jackson, Wilson & FDR get the boot.

But this is where political correctness inevitably leads: Just as 1984’s Newspeak Dictionary became progressively (pun intended) smaller in each succeeding edition, so must the left’s version of history, as well.

CHRISTOPHER NUTTALL, whom you may remember as the author of the Ark Royal books, etc., also has a blog. Here are some thoughts on David Cameron and Islamic Extremism:

Like so many other politicians, Cameron is infected with the virus of political correctness, a virus that weakens the host to the point where resistance against dangerous threats becomes impossible. This may seem absurd, but consider; if the mere act of identifying a threat is considered evil, how then is resistance to be organised? This is, of course, the precise reason why 1984 was (and remains) such an important novel. The newspeak of political correctness is just as dangerous as the cruder form practiced by Big Brother.

Cameron is correct, to be fair, that Islamic extremism is a deadly threat. It is a ruthless force that is just as dangerous to Muslims as it is to everyone else. Nor is there any denying the strange appeal of extremism to young men and women, even though the men will be used as cannon fodder and the women forced to breed the next generation of extremists. Nor, finally, is there any denying the spread of conspiracy theories through the Middle East and the Muslim Diaspora, an inevitable result of governments that – whatever veneer they wear – are blatantly hypocritical. Many of Cameron’s observations on why this extremism spreads are quite accurate. Far too many young Muslims in Britain – and non-Muslims too – simply feel no attachment to British society.

But this is caused by a simple failure to defend British society.

When you have a ruling class that doesn’t much like the country it rules, this is what happens.

DISCLAIMER OF THE WEEK:

Adjust journalistic style guides, Newspeak Dictionaries accordingly.

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARIES ACCORDINGLY: CNN’s Chris Cuomo: Sanctuary Cities Are A ‘Misnomer:’

CNN’s Chris Cuomo minimized the problem of sanctuary cities for illegal immigrants on Monday’s New Day. When Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s special counsel, touted how Trump “opened up the eyes to (sic) many Americans that didn’t even know sanctuaries existed,” Cuomo claimed that sanctuary cities are a “misnomer.” He underlined that “those are cities…are in disputes with ICE about how you deal with people that they’re holding….But they’re not safe havens the way you’re describing.”

The liberal anchor might want to object to his own network’s coverage of the issue of illegal immigration, as the term has come up multiple times since Trump’s announcement. One of Cuomo’s co-anchors, Michael Pereira, and correspondent Dan Simon used the phrase on the Wednesday edition of the morning newscast, as they covered the murder of Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco by an illegal alien.

And of course, back in 2013, AP erased the phrase “illegal immigrant” from its style guide, and much (but not all) of the DNC-MSM quickly followed suit. And yet, erasing words and declaring certain phrases as thoughtcrime doesn’t stop the actual crimes from occurring in the real world beyond the TV studios and newsrooms.

UPDATE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY ACCORDINGLY: State Department Officially Calls Iran’s Forced Sex Change Surgeries ‘Confirmation:’

By referring to the surgeries as “gender confirmation,” rather than the much more widespread and morally neutral “sex reassignment surgery,” the State Department seems to be siding with the Iranian government’s false “cure” for homosexuality.

John Kerry never got the memo that Orwell wrote 1984 as a warning, not a how-to guide.

ATTENTION OUTER PARTY MEMBERS, LATEST VERSION OF NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY NOW ONLINE: Univ. of WI Releases List of Microaggressions; Saying “Everyone can Succeed” Now Racist.

THE NEW LANGUAGE OF SEXUAL CONSENT: Newspeak.

ROGER KIMBALL: Benghazi: The New York Times vs. the Truth. “How are we to understand the Times’s latest entry into the contest to rewrite history for ideological fun and profit? My own sense is that it has less to do with salvaging President Obama’s tattered reputation — he is well on his way to winning the prize for the least competent and most destructive president in the history of the republic. No, Barack Obama is yesterday’s news, and unless and until he is impeached and removed from office he will be pretty much forgotten by purveyors of all the Newspeak fit to print. They have their eyes on another player in the Benghazi scandal, namely Hilary Clinton. If anyone emerged from that shameful episode more discredited than Barack Obama, it was Ms. Clinton. But time is passing fast, and there is a lot of remedial work to do if Hilary Clinton is to be suitably repackaged as the Democratic candidate for president. That ambition, I believe, stands behind this elaborate, breathtaking exercise in journalistic mendacity.”