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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?”


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.


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.


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.”

PLEASE UPDATE YOUR NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY ACCORDINGLY: UNC drops term ‘freshman’ in favor of ‘gender-inclusive’ language.

ONE WAY FREE SPEECH: The progressive vision of free speech is decidedly one-way, excluding any speech that is “hate” speech, or simply politically incorrect speech.  The latest battle is taking place on college and university campuses across the country, as this report about UC-Berkeley reveals.  The one-way topic du jour?  Palestine.

I can tell you from first-hand experience as an academic that pro-Palestine speech is freely encouraged, while pro-Israel speech is far too often labeled “hate” speech and suppressed.

Progressive free speech = one way only.  Reminds me of George Orwell’s 1984:  “Don’t you see the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the language of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible because there will be no words in which to express it”

THE SCOURGE OF THE FEMINIST WORD POLICE: How feminist writer Kate Swift created her own Newspeak Dictionary and helped ruin everyday English.

WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Blue State Dems Turn on State, Local Workers.

Despite the differences in rhetoric, killing public sector unions is a nonpartisan policy in the United States. While Republicans are more explicit about their goal, and want to move faster, Democrats and Republicans are both taking steps that will soon reduce the public sector union movement to a shadow of its current self.

Look at Rahm Emanuel, newly elected mayor of Chicago. Chicago is a dark blue city in a deep blue state; Emanuel is a career Democratic pol who served as chief of staff to the most liberal American president elected in many years. And what is Emmanuel doing? The mayor-elect was cagey on the subject during the campaign, but massive tax increases are off the table, and so are big bailouts from Washington DC. According to Time magazine, the campaign has spoken cryptically about saving $110 million from reducing “outdated and duplicative work processes to focus on front-line service delivery.” Translate that out of bureaucratic Newspeak and it means getting more work done with fewer people: layoffs. Emanuel says that the city’s generous pensions need to be preserved, but may also have to be, ahem, renegotiated. This does not sound like a renegotiation up. . . .

Look at New York, the classically blue state where I live, home to liberal lions like Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, Fiorello LaGuardia and Mario Cuomo. Here our new governor Andrew Cuomo is seeking major concessions and threatening layoffs against the public sector unions, vowing to balance the state’s budget with spending cuts. Cuomo has also promised — read his lips? — not to raise taxes, and has introduced what the New York Times editorial page calls a “radical” bill to cap property tax increases and require a super-majority to raise them by more than 2 percent a year. Up to 9,800 state employees face layoffs under his new budget: that is more than six times more people than Wisconsin governor Walker has threatened to lay off if his union bill isn’t passed. . . . The public sector labor movement has reached a historical dead end. Cities and states that yield to labor demands have higher costs, higher taxes and higher debt than places that don’t. Over time, those states stand to lose revenue, jobs and population to cheaper and more efficient jurisdictions. If the governor of Vermont can see New Hampshire from his house, the governor of Illinois can see Wisconsin and Indiana.

Read the whole thing. I think the unions picked Wisconsin for their stand in part because that way they wouldn’t have to go after a well-connected Democratic governor.


THE GULF OIL SPILL meets the Newspeak dictionary.

THE NEWSPEAK DICTIONARY GOES GALLIC: Theodore Dalrymple hands out the first Brezhnev Prize for the most obfuscating European politician ever.

And for news of transatlantic obfuscations,  following the embarrassment of having recommended Spain’s failed environmental programs as his model, President Obama has switched to Denmark as his prototype “green” nation. Good choice? Not so fast, Christopher Horner writes, asking, “Best out of five?”

RELATED: At Reason TV, “Sweden’s March Towards Capitalism.”

Hopefully, someday America will begin a similar journey as well.


If you blinked, you might have missed it. The Obama administration has unofficially rebranded “war on terror” phrase that dominated public discourse throughout the Bush administration. The replacement phrase, carefully chosen, is “CVE” — Countering Violent Extremism.

Like Orwell’s ever-shrinking Newspeak Dictionary, Marc Ambinder counts the number of real-world words missing from this latest euphemism, a term that brings new meaning to the title of Austin Bay’s pocket dictionary of military jargon.


It is inevitable in modern American politics that each new president inaugurates his own brand of bushwa – rubbish, lies, eyewash, whatever you choose to call it – that reminds one of nothing so much as the previous guy’s bushwa. Mr. Obama is no exception. . . . Remember signing statements? Those were the dastardly little postscripts George Bush attached to legislation that he didn’t completely approve of. Signing statements ignore the “fundamental principle’’ of the separation of powers, the American Bar Association huffed. On the campaign trail, candidate Obama was asked, “Do you promise not to use presidential [signing statements] to get your way?’’ “Yes,’’ he answered. “I taught the Constitution for 10 years, I believe in the Constitution, and I will obey the Constitution of the United States. We are not going to use signing statements as a way of doing an end run around Congress.’’

That was easy!

Less easy is explaining away his six signing statements so far, an impressive one-a-month clip. “Signing statements serve a legitimate function in our system,’’ Obama now says, “at least when based on well-founded constitutional objections.’’ Mr. President, meet my friend George Orwell, inventor of Newspeak, who memorably wrote, “Political language has to consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness.’’

New bushwa same as the old bushwa? It’s a lot less different than we had been led to believe.

Hope and Change Same!

STRANGE INEPTITUDE: “The news that the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pension committee has postponed consideration of Labor Secretary nominee Hilda Solis because her husband only yesterday paid off tax liens, some of which had been pending for up to 16 years, confirms that there’s an inexplicable, widespread problem in the Obama vetting process (as if Geithner, Daschle, Richardson, Killefer, et al hadn’t already demonstrated that). . . . Either Obama and his nominees aren’t easily embarrassed, or the vetters have tin ears the size of satellite dishes.”

Related thoughts from Nathan Moore: “The problem here, at least in my view, is not so much that Solis’ husband had some rather antique tax liens hanging around, but that the Obama administration’s vetting process has revealed itself to be decidedly incompetent. Or, more accurately, arrogant, which really is just a subform of incompetence. . . . The message is clear, no matter how earnestly the president employs Newspeak rhetoric in a vain attempt to muddle it – there are two sets of rules, one for us, and one for them. If they truly believed there was one set of rules, the administration would have taken it upon itself to weed out the tax-encumbered nominees from the process, but they didn’t – and that speaks volumes.”

THE NEWSPEAK VERSION OF “Human Rights Activists.”

IS “UGLY NARRATIVE” newspeak for true? Interesting discussion in the comments.

RANDI RHODES GETS a bad review from Ed Cone:

She was ranting about Israel’s “genocide” in Lebanon.

Genocide? Whatever Israel is doing, however bad you may think it, it’s not the mass systematic extermination of a people. She piled on, saying that people who talk about the world’s last genocide (which, of course, the Holocaust was not) should never do it themselves.

She also said, wrongly, that “thousands” of people had died in Katrina.

It was pretty damn bad.

Of course it was. I’ve noticed a lot of antiwar people accusing Israel of “genocide.” Once you realize that in lefty newspeak, “genocide” is a code word meaning “self-defense” it all makes sense.

UPDATE: Related thoughts here.