And Words Are All I Have

I am a woman of words.

“Of course,” you’ll say, “You have to be. It’s your job.” Meh. It is and it isn’t.

Being good with words is a good bonus for a fiction writer. Though honestly, it is not only not needed but it’s a double edged blessing. I mean, it makes it easier to produce readable wordage relatively quickly and easily, but on the other hand, you can get tempted to use too many of them and make them way too important for the book. So your story gets submerged in words, gasping for air.

But I like words. I will read something in a language I speak, but a different dialect or time-slang, like say regency thieves cant, and will cheerfully absorb it with no effort at all.

So it annoys me very much that the left both attributes impossible power to words. They think “As we say it, so it will be” and earnestly believe that words can control reality and the world.

They keep changing the meaning of words, and demanding we use the words they want us to, because they think if only everyone is using the same words, it will control everyone’s thoughts, and then automagically the world will change and be a paradise.

In case you have missed this about the left, they have a lot of these hare-brained ideas that go something like:

Crazy theory or idea that was never that way, ever, in the story of ever — ????– paradise.

I think, personally, the whole problem is that they think that paradise is obtainable with “this one simple trick” and that the only reason not everything is perfect all the time is that someone is fighting them. And the people who oppose them must be educated or re-educated or thwarted by all possible means.

Of all their crusades nothing is funnier and more tragic than their war with language.

Take their war on “retarded” — “retarded” was supposed to be the kinder, gentler word. I’m not sure what the words for those who simply weren’t developing properly were before but I think it was “defective” and the like while “retarded” merely implies that people are slow in developing and will slowly catch up and be normal or close to it (which to be fair applies to some real developmental issues). But of course, retarded started being used as the equivalent of “stupid.” It started with kids, but people of course picked it up.

So now we’re not supposed to use that. We’re supposed to use “developmentally disabled” because that will fix everything. Give it a nicer, kinder name, and unfortunate people will stop being born with issues, and other humans will stop being mean about it. Sure. Why not?

Or take handicapped. Remember the silly thing about “handicapable?”

That was supposed to eliminate any disability. Automagically. When it didn’t catch on, because of course handicapped people are handicapped and it doesn’t make any difference if you call them “capable.” Some will be QUITE CAPABLE of course. Particularly in this day and age, when there are various aids to and helps for your problems, and you can live a full and useful life, but you need to work harder. You have a handicap. It doesn’t mean you’re incapable, just that they don’t have as easy a time as other people. It certainly isn’t an insult.

But when the handicapable silliness didn’t catch on, they changed to “disabled” which is terrible. We went from handicapped, but potentially functional to people being disabled, and forever in need of assistance or having things done for them. They’re not able. They’re disabled, like a software function turned off.

Then we have the whole nonsense of Privileged. Privilege is private law, that is a law that treats you better than other people. I don’t know about you, but unless you are a maven of the democratic party or the relation of one — coughs in “Hunter” — you are going to have the law brought down on you with all the power possible.

So when they fling privileged around to mean anything from education to you having a little more money than you need to survive, to the ability to do math, to saving money instead of spending it all, it is meaningless, and merely sort of an incantation to tell us why we should all be equal and if we’re not, if we have an ounce more of gumption or intelligence or will power, then we’re privileged and should feel guilty and use it all in the service of others.

And please, don’t get me started on advantaged and disadvantaged. You see, sure, some of us have something more than others in terms of brain or agility or imagination or even physical strength.

But when you say someone is “advantaged” you imply that they have all the advantages. this is bullshit. If you want to see me completely helpless, present me with a plumbing problem. Of course my plumber can’t write a novel. (And why should he want to? He makes more.)

The same way when you say someone is disadvantaged usually to mean they’re criminal or broke, you imply it was these disadvantages that led them there. Now someone being a ridiculous-ass aggressive idiot, or a drug or alcohol addict who will murder for his vice, or a murderous SOB MIGHT be a disadvantage, but it doesn’t mean someone inflicted it on them. There’s usually volition and a choice to take that path because it’s easy or enjoyable.

Calling them disadvantaged implies someone advantaged others. It’s ridiculous.

And don’t get me started on calling the merely poor “disadvantaged.” Some of the greatest achieving people in the word grew up unimaginably poor. Heinlein might have been right that the worst you can do to your kids is make their lives too easy.

And you all know I find the inanity of pronouns — third person, so never used to you! — completely ridiculous.

Most of all, though, I’m offended. I’m offended on behalf of the words they insist on torturing. I’m offended by their half baked ideas. Good Lord. I could come up with better world building and plot on three hours of sleep, while dead drunk.

Do they really believe if they call seamstresses sewists or — heaven help us and defend us — sewers (I swear I’ve seen it) women who sew will feel all important and empowered? Why? WHY Would ERASING THE NAME OF A FEMALE PROFESSION BE EMPOWERING? Have they gone after taylor? I mean it’s a profession that comes in two gender varieties. Why would they eliminate the female one? How does that empower women?

It doesn’t. In fact eliminating women across the board seems to be a great trick of the equalizers. Also any minorities in any brand image need to be eliminated to free minorities, apparently.

And don’t get me started on why People of Color is fine and Colored People isn’t, and heaven forfend I ever meet a colorless person. I mean, they’d be transparent, I’d never see them coming.

On behalf of the language I want to protest. Words are lovely things and they shouldn’t be raped.

Yes, language changes, but it shouldn’t be changed as the instrument of a deranged utopian sect who can’t tell its ass from chocolate ice cream with candy sprinkles and doesn’t know if it’s ass or breakfast time.

I fell in love with the English language, before I fell in love with America, before I fell in love with my husband.

It is my language of choice, my own. Stop playing with it.

I have a keyboard and I’m not afraid to use it.

382 thoughts on “And Words Are All I Have

  1. I am not good with words, at least in person. My brain gets all discombobulated and locks up. I can write an email or text and take the time to better express what I’m trying to say. All these nonsense lefty rules just mean I don’t engage with them in conversation…

    1. I’m not great with words when it comes to ad hoc speaking either. If I go southern speed, with significant pauses between sentences, to give myself time to order and select, then I do much better. But it still feels contrived that way.

      1. Southern speed is the only one I’ve got. If I try to go faster, I just fail. Nothing comes out. I am usually able to marshal my vocabulary within that limit, though I’m much more comfortable with the written word.

        1. My semi-sainted mother was once a guest on a nationwide PBS program. Midway through taping, the producer threw up her hands. “Ma’am, people in Boston cannot sort out THAT drawl at THAT speed. Please lose one.”

        2. Speaking? You jest. One on one, okay. Maybe in a group of 3. Anymore than that? Forget it. I don’t get a word in. Period. If I try, by the time I get a chance, the topic has moved on. It just isn’t worth the effort. Writing, like this OTOH? I can chime in, whenever. Sometimes the topic has moved on and no one responds. But sometimes they do, hours or days later.

          1. Same here. Conversations (and especially arguments) in any group larger than 3 or 4 people generally don’t have my voice in them, and that’s all there is to it.

            1. especially arguments

              Any argument. Period. I go mute. When I was younger, pre-teen through early to mid-20’s, cue the waterworks. Learned, eventually, to control them. Was not hormonal either. Not any less sensitive or empathic (empathetic, too). Learned from an excellent example who has my back no matter what (yes, after 44 years, still a keeper).

    1. They are taking every dystopia written in the last century (except Solzhenitsyn) and using all of them as how-to manuals. The Reader can’t think of one they have missed.

        1. The Reader wonders what would happen if we crowd sourced a version of her works bowdlerizing them with a conservative bent and claimed fair use?

          1. That could be fun. Throw it back in their faces, especially when the conservative version prove much more popular than theirs.

            1. I’m in.

              Wait, does that involve reading her drek? I mean, I’ll still do it, but I may need a stiff drink or three.

      1. Funny she should mention Twain (clemens was a ‘literary’ author?); can kids even find, much less read, Hu7ckleberry Finn becuse of the use of the N-word?

        1. Any author that survives becomes literary, on account of semantic drift and all that stuff making the works harder to read.

  2. They change the words to try to cut off our ability to argue with them about the stupidity and non-functionality of their ideas and proposals, or to deflect from their more obvious failures / lies

    1. Changing the meaning of words is no different than changing the rules of a game in the middle of a game.

      And it’s the same as changing what’s against the law by making what’s legal, criminal.

  3. And what about that whole trading of leftist, liberal, progressive when one of them gets too stinky from exposure to the truth. The Left seems to forget human nature will turn any word into a pejorative if it is the word used for an outside group. Or is this their way of staying ahead of the avalanche.

    1. Progressive is an old term, dating back to the early Twentieth Century. I think the book “Liberal Fascism” might have actually been what brought that one back into use as I didn’t see the term used until that book came out.

      1. Teddy Roosevelt was a Progressive. It really didn’t mean what it means today, though Teddy in some ways was just another big government liberal (as we would describe them today).

        He’s still my favorite president.

          1. Coolidge considered himself a Progressive for a while, as well. But by the time he became vice president under Harding, the term already referred to something that he knew he was not. The current meaning of the term was more or less locked in place by the time Wilson became president. And while the specific issues have changed over the decades, the overall themes and focus is still what it was under Wilson.

          1. Lovers of Arthropods? Of course that also covers Lobsters. I will eat the Sea Bugs happily. Although my understanding is lobsters were once junk “fish” in New England and there were rules about how often you could feed your apprentice lobster and riots in jails over getting lobster too often.

          1. True true, although the goal here was to obfuscate and insectivore is comprehensible even to most brahmandarins (perhaps excluding Turnip In Chief, VP, AOC and a few select others).

  4. Words have always held power, And who have always been the most proficient in the wielding of that power? Politicians, lawyers, preachers, and con men, but I repeat myself.
    To borrow a favorite of our very own CommieLa, the ven diagrams of those positions do very much overlap.
    But they also hold the rather sad belief that if they only apply the full force of their words they can mold and alter reality into whatever shape and form suits them. And eventually reality bites back. So it’s only understandable the enormous frustration they feel and the mad and violent reactions they have when their words fail to create the twisted fiction they desire to replace reality with.

      1. I figured that preachers was enough to cover that aspect of the greater group of liars, thieves, and scam artists.

      1. That’s where mine started, for the same reason. (I love music, so I keep finding new things to love in it. Like randomly discovering that there’s an entire genre called “electro-swing.”)

          1. Word of advice, “Don’t get in the way of Mommy Dragon when she’s hunting”.

            Especially not when Mommy Dragon has one of her dragonlings along on the Hunt. 😈

          2. Have you ever heard ‘Secession Studios’ on YouTube? Or ‘Samuel Kim,’ for that matter. There’s some really interesting stuff. Samuel Kim often does musical crossovers too, like Davy Jones Theme x The Imperial March.

            1. Sam Kim’s Anakin and Asoka theme was a magnificent reimagining of the Imperial March. He turned it into a major key, almost a what if Anakin did not turn evil version of the march. I’ll have to go see if I can find that one again.

              Have you heard of The Aviators? They do music based on stories and games, might be right up your ally. Just saw this one today:

        1. Having never heard of nightcore, I had to look up some songs and hear what it was like. I just have one question:

          When the hell did sounding like one of the Chipmunks at a rave become musical genre?

          Actually, make that two questions:

          WHY did sounding like one of the Chipmunks at a rave become musical genre?

          1. That was my thought, originally. Then I got hooked. (My preference for it may be guided by the faster beat and quicker rate of speech – I can hear and understand what I need to know quickly, and tend to get annoyed if someone’s talking ‘too slowly.’ I try very hard not to show that, though.)

            Dad mostly thought it was hilarious when I showed him, and began suggesting songs like ‘Enter Sandman’ and cookie-monster metal just to hear what they sounded like. ‘Bring Me To Life’ (Evanescence) is pretty good, too. As are ‘The Devil Within’ and ‘Control,’ in my opinion… but then I recently got told: “I said don’t cut yourself on that edge. You just impaled yourself on it.”

            So edgy-ness has become a thing for me, of late. And nightcore’s pretty good for that.

            1. I’m sorry, but “Alvin and the Chipmunks” and “edgy” is just not a connection my mind is willing to make. Today, thou art silly in my eyes. 😛

        2. I like Nox Arcana (eerie haunted land music) and the related soundtrack to the indie film Crimson Winter. Also Peter Gundry, and Adrian van Ziegler for “minor key movie music.” I don’t have all of Gundry’s music, because some of it is deliberately pagan, and that makes me . . . Nervous isn’t the right word, but I don’t like it.

          For “Life stinks and I want out but not quite?” Sirenia. Dim Days of Dolor pretty much tells you the theme. Some of Beyond the Black as well.

          1. Very familiar with Nox Arcana, and Adrian van Ziegler is fairly interesting. I’m afraid I don’t listen to van Ziegler closely enough to be able to tell which of his songs is which, though… they don’t often sound different enough to stand out.

          1. Evanescence, Within Temptation, and Epica ring any bells? (I typically prefer the orchestral Epica songs to the metal versions, but that’s a matter of personal taste.)

  5. Having just left the corporate world. I lived this nonsense every day. There were basically two types of people I encountered – complicators and simplifiers. The complicators use meaningless word salads – dished up in 60 page power points. Why? To lie! If there was any truth it was well hidden in an ocean of meaningless words. The simplifiers use a minimum of words with clear meanings.

    1. Looking at it from the military bureaucracy point of view, I saw a lot of people use jargon and verbiage because it was expected: it “looked better.” It helped the author conform. Of course, the occasional general who didn’t like it was a real relief,

  6. I hadn’t realized how far ahead of her time (i.e. politically correct) Julian May’s Galctic Milieau (?) trilogy was. Gay marriage, gender-neutral language….I think she did it as “local color,” more than ideology (given the plot is driven partly by people’s resentment of the new rules). But I suspect I’m going to be a tad creeped out when I reread it.
    OTOH, she’d still be anathema to the current crowd because in “The Many-Colored Land,” she presents a transsexual as flaming bughouse nuts.

    1. Hmm, perhaps it’s time for me to reread the saga(s). I have a book club edition of the last two Exile novels, but The Golden Torc and The Many Colored Land were paperback and didn’t survive the move here. Have to see if they are available as ebooks. AFAIK, my last reading of them was well before PC infested the timeline.

      As favorite characters go, I rather like Rogi as the rogueish* narrator, and Marc is a galactic-class villain. I just can’t get excited about Diamond Mask and Jack.

      (*) I was going to use “unreliable”, but his narration was fine, but as a character, well broken.

      1. She said she was deliberately patterning the books after the style of British thrillers. I got to meet her at a con long ago and she was talking about how every member of Group Green was an archetype. She also commented that you should be careful about which one you identified with!

      1. The character was lushly, “built,” and a doctor. “She,” figured out how to reverse the sterilization of female Exiles so the Tanu could use them for forced breeding. Sort of motherhood by proxy.
        She came to a sharp, pointy end. (Never mess with the woman of a guy with a touch of berserker).

        1. “guy with a touch of berserker”?

          He had more than “a touch” of berserker. [Very Big Grin]

      2. Would Thomas Harris fit into that same category? At least in The Silence of the Lambs. No comment on the corruption-of-the-hero arc that I’ve heard takes place in Hannibal.

  7. I maintain that a lot of these people, 140 or so years ago, would have been card-carrying members of the Temperance Union, writing Edifying Tracts on the Evils of Drink and the Scourge of Tobacco when not teaching Sunday School. Not because of love of their fellow man, but because those were the acceptable outlets for the urge to boss people around at the time. Now they (some perhaps gratefully) can exercise their desire to dominate in purely secular/ideological forms.

    1. I could see them with axes destroying barrels of beer, though I suspect many would have a fine wine cellar. I’d love to reserve a cask of Amontillado just for them. Right in this niche. Never mind the bricks…

    2. Carrie Nation was a demented harpy who should have been shot dead in her tracks the first time she started swinging her hatchet in a saloon.

        1. And when they swing lethal weapons on someone else’s property, like Carrie Nation did, they should be treated as Ing suggested.

  8. They’re following the communist playbook, the final goal of which is to erase the individual and replace it with the collective “we.” No fathers, no mothers, no children, no “I.” There is no “I love you” in communism.

    Fighting back has been tough over the past few years, but more and more people are standing up and rejecting this. Are words important? They are life and death. We fight.

  9. My favorite is how “Native” has somehow become unacceptable and must instead be replaced with “Indigenous”.

    1. The “Native Americans” (hush) that I’ve spoken to find the term “indigenous” to be hilarious.

      They also think it’s stupid. NA is viewed as acceptable instead of their tribal nation. But they don’t like “indigenous”.

      1. There’s a passage in either 1491 or 1493 where the author is speaking to an “indigenous person” in Andean South America somewhere, and the person scoffs at being called “Native”. Paraphrasing, he said something like “you gringos have ‘Native Americans’, down here we’re Indians.”

    2. Which does not, of course, MEAN “indigenous.” For instance, a scholarship in the British Isles for someone indigenous SHOULD require a white recipient.

  10. Have you been spelunking in the depth of my mind? On and off for the last few nights I’ve thought the sheer weirdness of self-described “sewers” (sew-ers was meant, but not said correctly). Every time I get ocularly assaulted with that nonsense I muse that while there are many mighty weird kinks, pretty much all are best kept private – and an affinity for effluent is certainly best unpublicized.

  11. Damn it, you’re reading my mind again. I was thinking on this just this morning.

    They believe in magic, I don’t believe in magic. That seems to be the great divide. Their weakness is that they can never be uncertain., they can never admit they were wrong, they can never admit they don’t know, it makes them brittle.

          1. If magic exists, then He created it. Of course it comes from Him.

            Like the rest of the Creation, it can be misused.

      1. The Reader hopes that was with apologies to the Lovin’ Spoonful.

      2. Absolutely I’m living tragic. Why I like heroic fiction so much. I’m always praying that the tragic in my life, will turn out to just be the hard bit in the middle of the adventure, and that there will be a happily ever after sometime in my life, of course then there is book two in the series…

        1. Thank you. I needed to read that just now. I don’t expect “happily ever after” but I’d like the DC offset to at least get UP to something close to zero volts.

    1. There is magic in the world, it’s just not their type of magic. The magic I mean is the magic in a child’s smile, a beautiful sunset, the feeling you get from a job well done, and yes a little bit of chicken fried, cold beer with friends on a Friday night.

    2. My issue with ‘magic’ is that if it is unrepeatable, it is unreliable.
      And if it IS repeatable, it can be properly studied until understood.
      There is some ‘not-exactly-magic-but’ being worked on.
      And there is…. Other Stuff.
      Now, the Other Stuff might be real (some eerie stuff is eerie for a reason) but without repeatability and the chance of working it out… well, I agree that in almost all cases (with a few Strange Exceptions – and I have experienced a couple) ESP really stands for Error Some Place.

      1. My first wife, when she was studying to be a Wiccan priestess, once described magic as “sending energy out into the universe and hoping for a positive effect”.

        “Sounds like prayer,” I said sotto voce.

      2. Clarke had it right; “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”. To which I’d add “untill you learn enough about it to see how it works”.

      3. Magic — at least magia — is unexplained causality. Nowadays, that’s technology. And in fantasy, the wringer of scientific method wrung out different rules. Intent mattering being the most consistent.

        (There is also goetia and theurgia. Stay far, far, far away. Even the pagan Greeks and Romans prosecuted them as impiety — and even the claimed theurgists said most people who tried to traffick with gods got daemons instead.)

    3. Indeed they seem to believe in sympathetic magic. Words hurt them, They like to make giant effigies of their opponents and burn or mutilate them. They’re reverting to the world of five millenia ago (and not their silly peaceful Gaia worshiping matriarchy that never existed). Next they’ll start ripping peoples hearts out to protect the planet…

    4. In wonder if it is the belief that the rules of the world can be bent like straw that makes them so afraid of being called wrong?

      If the rules, the fundamental rules that matter are fixed, predictable and unchanging, then it does not matter whether someone says I am wrong or not. While I might be wrong, the voicing will neither make it so or un-so.

      But if the rules, the ones that matter, can bend at a whim, then anyone saying my rules are wrong threatens to make it so.

      1. To paraphrase a comment I saw over at Chris Bray’s substack, Wokism generally and gender ideology specifically is a Gnostic religion. “But for millions of our contemporaries, each person’s core is a unique sexual identity with its preciously unique kinks and utterly unique gender expression, and the goal is liberating that Self by aggressively expressing it.” Deviance from the worldly norm just makes that essential core even more sacred, and women who oppose their essential identity’s self-expression on the basis of “mere bodies” is the worst form of blasphemy against their personal divine revelation. and find the comment from Eric Mader.

        1. And it’s secret knowledge, unavailable to the common ilk, obtainable only by study and sacrifice. Which means “you,” the aspirant, are Special.
          Lot of appeal to the, “want to be part of a secret society of masters,” theme there.

  12. “Heaven forfend I ever meet a colorless person.”

    Well, they could be transparent. But that’s all but impossible to tell from really sophisticated chameleonization that changes the color of their skin to match the background. Which wouldn’t be colorless.

    I recently learned there’s a difference between additive color systems (paint and pigments) and subtractive color systems (light). So I find myself puzzled about whether a truly colorless individual would be perfectly white (additive, blank canvas) or blacker than midnight on a cloudy day (subtractive, no light reflecting off them).

    Either way, Uncanny Valley effect wouldn’t treat them well.

    1. You actually got that backwards. Light sources are additive; more wavelengths/frequencies reach your eyes when additional sources emit photons at those energies. Dyes, paints and pigments are subtractive; the colors you see are the ones that don’t get absorbed, but are reflected. Mixing in additional pigments absorbs more colors, until eventually almost none are reflected.

      Our perception of color is an artifact of how our eyes process light. There are 3 ‘primary’ colors because our eyes respond to light at wavelengths of approximately 650 (red), 550 (green) and 450 (blue) nanometers. Our eyes are most sensitive to photons near the middle of that range, which is why green lights looks brighter than red or blue of the same intensity.

        1. Color printing uses cyan, magenta and yellow inks. Blank white paper reflects all colors. When you ‘add’ cyan to yellow, you get green because yellow absorbs blue, and cyan absorbs red, leaving green.

          I got my start in broadcast TV back in 1977, and have worked with quite a bit of electro-optics over the years. I know why the Y channel consists of 59% green, 30% red and 11% blue.

          1. I used to work in digital prepress. Converting RGB to CMYK is always a PITA, mostly because the gamuts (total set of visible colors, for the non-cognoscenti) don’t overlap very well.

            One of my favorite questions to customers was always “do you want the blacks in the illustration to be black or rich black?” The ones who knew what they were doing would always know what they wanted; the amateurs would be confused.

            (“Rich” black is C10 M10 Y10 K100 (or sometimes 20 instead of 10, depending), and usually looks “blacker” than just black ink alone.)

      1. And our response on the blue cones is ~1/10 our response on the red and green cones/ It all gets level out by that wonderful image processor, our brain.

    2. Oddly enough both the French blanc and English black come from the same root — and so does blank.

      They probably both mean “colorless.”

    3. > “Well, they could be transparent.”

      Reminds me of the Faded from Pandemic Legacy (think “zombies with translucent skin”).

      > “I recently learned there’s a difference between additive color systems… and subtractive color systems.”

      It might be that I grew up with the Ultima games (which have a primary color scheme as part of the gameplay), but it’s always bothered me that an additive (light-based) primary color palette has cyan instead of orange. Weird thing to have a stick up your ass about, but there it is.

  13. The heights or depths of absurdity people will go to in order to twist the language so that they can control the terms of debate is truly amazing. It’s as if they believe that if you can control the words people use, you can control how they think. It doesn’t work that way, and it’s one of the things that make 1984 more fiction than prophecy (even dark prophecy).
    Humans are clever apes and when words fail to express ideas, they will invent new words or give old words new meanings. The would-be editors of the Newspeak dictionary cannot possibly keep up and cannot stamp out thoughtcrime that way. What they might possibly accomplish is to recreate Babel and make public discourse impossible.

    You might wash and perfume a turd, give it a flowery new name, and compose poetry about it, but you can’t keep it from stinking. For instance and example, any day now, I expect some vicious epithet for ersatz women, that is, men who pretend to be women in order to gain some social advantage like participating in women’s sports or gaining access to women’s bathrooms, to catch fire and become widespread. Once that starts, there is nothing all the sports authorities and syndicated columnists in the world can do to stop it.

    1. People create words all the time, I just noticed, “yeet,” as in, I want to see him yeeted right out the door into orbit.” I thought it might be a Yiddish crossover, but apparently someone just coined it and it caught on.

      1. Yeet is one of those rare additions to the english language which come out of no other language. I have a t shirt with “Yeet Isuldur” on it in Quenya characters (Yeet being phonetically spelled out as J.R.R. Tolkien did not record its Quenya or Sindarin equivalents).

          1. I think the implication is that Elrond should have just yeeted (note, I have seen Yote for this tense of Yeet, the language is still developing 🙂 ) Isildur into the cracks of doom Ring and all. Of course if he’d done that we’d have been out a rather good story and some halfway decent movies.

            1. I remember seeing that scene and thinking Elrond should have just shot him and kicked him (and the ring) off the ledge.

              “Isildur? He, uh, slipped. Fell into the lava. Very tragic. But hey, at least he took the ring with him! Trust me, it’s going to save everybody a lot of trouble down the road. For the best, really.”

          2. The One Ring can only be yoinked, never yeeted. In the end, poetically, only Gollum’s irresistible compulsion to yoink accomplished its destruction.

          3. Elrond: Isildur! Throw it into the Fire!
            Isildur: No. The Ring is mine!
            E: … Look! a baby wolf!
            I: What?
            E: [push]
            I: Aieeeeee
            Lava: gloop

            Problem f***ing well solved.

            1. There are a couple of in-world justifications I can think of. (As in, NOT “Because we needed the story to happen.”)

              (a) Attacking the person bearing the Ring makes you vulnerable to its influence. (Trying to push him off the ledge would lead to a grappling match rather than just Isildur falling, and by the time you got your head clear of adrenaline, you had the One Ring and didn’t really want to destroy it any more.)

              (b) Attacking the person bearing the Ring is a risky proposition because it might warn them early enough for them to use it against you. (Isildur dodges, puts the Ring on and… no one really knows what happens after that, because only Sauron has used the Ring up until now.)

              Even if neither (a) or (b) is true mechanically, it would be somewhat understandable for Elrond to presume one or the other given that NO ONE KNOWS what the Ring does for anyone other than Sauron. The fallen Maiar poured a lot of his power into that thing, and it’s made to be far more dangerous than any of the others. Another possibility, of course, is…

              (c) Elrond was somewhat close to the family, and Elendil made him promise to do everything he could to help Isildur survive the battle. Being caught between honor and pragmatism is a really uncomfortable position to be in, and I could see him being frozen with indecision long enough for Isildur to walk away, and regretting it forever thereafter.

              1. To be fair, Isildur died trying to get the ring to Elrond to figure out what to do with it…

                1. After the fall of Sauron, Isildur returned to Gondor and assumed the Elendilmir, proclaiming his Kingship in Arnor and sovereign lordship over the Dúnedain in both the North and the South. [6][7] He remained for a year in the South, planted the seedling of the White Tree in Minas Anor in memory of his brother Anárion, put the realm to order, and instructed his nephew Meneldil, son of Anárion, in the governance of the land.[8] With Meneldil and a company of trusted friends, Isildur rode about the boundaries of Gondor and in Anórien created the tomb and memorial of Elendil upon the hill of Eilenaer, thereafter called Amon Anwar.[9] While he remained there, he wrote an account on how he acquired the Ring, its significance to his House and where he transcribed a verse found upon the Ring while it was still hot.[10]

                  When Isildur finally felt free to leave he committed the rule of Gondor to Meneldil and with his three sons[8] departed on 5 Ivanneth, T.A. 2. Instead of heading west and then north they journeyed northwards along the Anduin in order to first come to Imladris where his wife and little son Valandil were.[5]

        1. A flex is a power move designed to show off, based on the idea of a bodybuilder flexing a muscle to show off. It’s one of the cleaner slang derivations to come out, in that it very clear where it came from and it has a strong relation to its origins.

            1. yoink away.
              My kids’ generation scream was YOLO.
              I used to say YOLO unless you’re a devotee of a religion that believes in reincarnation. YOLA (You only leave again) must be your scream, then.
              Um…. that would also fit us ressurrectionists.
              YOLF (You only live forever) has a bad sound though.

              1. “YOLO” kept giving me problems – there is a “Yolo County” in California, just west of Sacramento, where I used to live.

              2. And to me YOLO is a telescope design, named for some county in California where the first was made.. at least that’s the story I recall. A weird design with mirrors cells made to introduce warping stresses into the glass.

          1. “Yeet”, btw, is classified as a strong verb, as seen in the sentence “do not yeet unless yote upon”.

        2. I’m the same way with “based” — like, I think it’s mostly referring to traditional/conservative viewpoints, but maybe not?

          1. My experience of the word suggests a meaning similar to:

            “I agree with this message, and it’s rare that someone ever says it, so I’m glad it was said here.” or “Finally, a message I can appreciate/agree with!”

            Example: “Based speaker today!”

              1. Don’t recall that one (haven’t read the series since it first appeared), but for some reason I’ve been warehousing ginger ever since… 😉

      2. Yeet sons and daughters of the King,
        Whom heavenly hosts in glory sing,
        To-day the grave hath lost its sting.

    2. Washing and perfuming a dog turd doesn’t do much for it.
      But I bet you can deep fry one and convince a leftist that it’s the best sausage they’ve ever eaten.

  14. ‘Hear Hear!’ (idiom used during a speech or meeting to say that one agrees with what someone else has just said). The bastardization of words by the left in order to twist or falsify objective reality is beyond the pale. Moreover, they redefine and misuse word meanings every single day. Case in point, Representative Ocasio-Cortez recently accused her political adversaries of being fascists (when in fact the opposite is true). So, either she misunderstands the meaning of the word or she is seeking to project on others.

    1. Fascist is the go-to pejorative for the Left no matter how inappropriate it might be. If the Savior of the World were to return tomorrow, some on the Left would accuse him of being a fascist.

      1. It serves two purposes: It’s hoped that by labeling someone a Fascist it will scare people into giving the Left power to fight the “threat” the “Fascist” presents. I mean, if they pointed at Sarah and proclaimed her true beliefs it’d go something like: “She wants to let you live your lives as you desire so–HEY! COME BACK HERE!”

        Also, the worst thing they can call someone is Fascist, since the Left is totalitarian in mentality and the one thing totalitarians hate more than those who believe in freedom is a competing totalitarian faction.

    2. The Brahmandarins are so historically illiterate that to them facist == bad no more no less. They’d blame Emmanuel Goldstein if they could.

  15. I have a bad back, nerve damage, constant pain, diabetes, IE, a handicap. I don’t feel handicapped or disabled just slowed down. I can still walk a mile or more but it takes a cane, a back brace, and knee braces to do it. No one did this to me, I did it to myself, and any envy I have is motivation. I still want a comfortable life, I still want things. I just have to find a new way to work to get them. Seriously I’d love a M-1-A1 from Springfield armory or a 1911. The point being I take responsibility for my life, my decisions and where I am at are my doing and no one else’s.
    That is what the left really hates, people who don’t blame others, people who say I am Me, and I will decide my fate. People who take responsibility for there own lives. People who do that put a lie to all they stand for. Yes the group is strong, but the group is stronger when it is made from individuals, not sheep. Nature shows you this, when a small group of wolves can slaughter a much larger group of sheep. So much for the strength of the larger group, time to buy some sheep dogs before you run out of sheep.
    I have always said Liberalism/Communism will always fail because it ignores nature especially human nature. That is the reason they change the language, to hide their failures. The faster they change the language the more they are failing. The only reason they remain in power now is their corruption of the system. Even now the sheep are waking up to that fact. They have fired their shots, and missed and hit the people they have convinced to be sheep. Keep you powder dry because they are more insane now then ever and that makes them more dangerous.

      1. Handicapped is the type of dart league I throw in. I prefer to think of it as a well lived in body. It didn’t get this way by sitting on the couch, it got this way by doing things. It very well maybe that I did them poorly, sobeit, I did them, where so many others sat on their couch. At least I have lived a life. I feel sorry for those who just sat on their couch. I maybe old but there is still so much to do, now if I could figure out how to make the money to do them, the whole lottery thing seems to not be working out at the moment…. (Tongue firmly planted in cheek) TFPIC

  16. “Do they really believe if they call seamstresses sewists or — heaven help us and defend us — sewers (I swear I’ve seen it) women who sew will fell all important and empowered? Why? WHY Would ERASING THE NAME OF A FEMALE PROFESSION BE EMPOWERING?”

    “stitchers” is what they call them in theatre, with the implication that their only job is to run the sewing machines and threaded needles.

    “Tailor” implies that one does the draping and patterning as well (which are done by the “draper” in a costume shop).

    I don’t know whether “seamstress” includes draping and patterning, or just stitching, but I can only assume that someone decided that it was unkind to refer to males by the female occupation name and couldn’t be bothered to find an equivalent masculine job-name like “sempster”

    1. According to the author’s note to “The Sempster’s Tale” (a medieval mystery by Margaret Frazer), “sempster” was the original, non-gender-specific term for both men and women who did sewing. The gender-specific endings like “-stress” to differentiate male and female practitioners of a craft didn’t become common in English until the 1600s. I’m not an expert, but Frazer is meticulous about historical details. (She was also very involved in theater and wrote a separate series about a medieval acting troupe, which you might enjoy.)

      1. “-ster” was originally the feminine occupational ending: “weaver” vs. “webster”, “brewer” vs. “brewster”. At some point those became indistinct — I would bet about when every peasant adopted a last name instead of just being John from Hamthorp — and English adopted “-ess” as the feminine ending.

      1. In British English today, per an English pattern that I got, the difference between seamstress and tailor is the technique they use to adjust clothing to fit. One shifts the fabric while cutting, and one does more with seams and construction. I don’t recall which was which.

        1. “Seams and construction” would be tailoring, which term is often used as synonymous with the construction of suit jackets, and sometimes as just the techniques for imparting permanent shapes to fabric such as rolled lapels.

      1. During the Klondike gold rush, Seattle was overrun with “seamstresses”, IYKWIMAITYD.

  17. “I’m not sure what the word for those who simply weren’t developing properly were before”

    IIRC, idiot was the technical term for the mentally feeble in the past, though there may have been another word in between idiot and retarded. The meaning of the word idiot has changed subtly since then, though the term “drooling idiot” seems to be a hold-over from the earlier meaning.

    1. The hierarchy used to be, “moron, imbecile and idiot,” if I recall correctly. Moron was the least afflicted, and could handle some things for themselves.

      1. You’re probably correct. Of the three words, moron is a gentle insult meaning someone not overly bright. Idiot is used more for people who come up with ideas and plans that are invariably bad. Imbecile, on the other hand, is almost entirely out of use.

        1. To be delivered properly, “Imbecile” must be spoken with great emphasis and waving of hands. German accent or similar are not required, but are recommended.

          Thus, it’s a niche term typically used by supervillains. The problem is that “Fool!” has cornered that market pretty well, so it’s fallen out of use almost entirely.

          1. Of course, calling your opponent an “Imbecile” isn’t too smart when you’re within his reach.

            As shown in the Avengers Movie when Loki was mouthing off at Hulk.

            “Stupid god”! 😈

            1. Ah, instant karma. How I love thee.

              And I wonder if something in Loki was jumping up and down with glee when he got to deliver the line, “We have a Hulk”? Of course, that didn’t go so well. But at least he got to see his brother get the snot beat out of him by the same creature.

              “YES! That’s how it feels!”

            2. Actually, that was Tony Stark: “We have a Hulk.”

              A threat Loki shouldn’t have laughed off.

              Loki: “Enough! You are all of you beneath me! I am a god, you dull creature, and I will not be bullied by—”

              Hulk: Grabs Loki by the ankle. WHAM! WHAM! WHAM! WHAM! [pause to consider] WHAM! WHAM!

              Hulk: “Puny god.”

              Loki: “…eeeeeeee…”

          2. There’s also Bugs Bunny style, where you pronounce it “im-BESS-ull”. Used to refer to a third party that Bugs has just fooled (or not, in at least one case when Bugs speaks too soon).

            Took me a while to figure that one out when I was young. 😛

      2. Aye, “Idiot” was someone so out of everything that there was NO meaningful response AT ALL to a question. Which means that if someone replies “Yes, I am!” to the question, “Are you an idiot?” they have actually disqualified themselves from the classification.

        1. I believe it was in Starship Troopers that Heinlein described an uplifted K9 dog as “an idiot studying to be a moron”.

        2. Actually, idiots could range up to a mental age of about five. Their hallmark was needing complete custodial care.

          Imbeciles were between the mental age of five to fourteen and required routine supervision.

          Morons were from fourteen up to adult, and could do productive labor.

          One reason the terms went out of technical use is that “mental age” would homogenize things in ways that aren’t accurate.

  18. The left also reserves the right now to create pejoratives, a la TERF. And isn’t it interesting that the various “sensitivities,” remove the people they supposedly want to protect? As in, now women are being “erased,” in favor of men who think/pretend to be women.
    I read a tweet from a presumed, “trans activist,” who helped shout down a feminist protest in New Zealand. The tweet: “I really got off seeing the fear in (feminist protester’s) eyes.” I read it to my beloved and his response was, “That’s a very masculine thing.” Yes, yes it is.

    1. Regarding Trans, and Title 9. My response to that is “Create their own category”. Either “explicitly Co-Ed, or Trans Only”. “Leave Men and Women sports alone”. Asked “Would you follow that sport category?” Answer “No.” (Insert whatever bad name I get called.) My response? “I. Do. Not. Follow. Sports. Period.” Here, I will admit: Except, maybe, sometimes, Dog or Horses. Human handler sex and *age does not matter. Oh, anything my ***son was involved in, except golf and only because HS golf there wasn’t anyway to go to follow it. There used to be the **commercial fest day. Otherwise?

      () Okay there are Junior (HS & lower), Open (anyone), and Senor (over 55). Categories. Junior is the only one broken down further by age category.
      () Super Bowl. Haven’t bothered last few years. Commercials have been “meh”.
      ) Bumble Bee soccer was a hoot. But K-2 doesn’t play full field soccer locally anymore.

      1. The easiest fix for trans would be to just have “everyone” and “biological females” categories. After all, men don’t really care if there are biological women in the same restroom. And trans men are at a disadvantage in competitive sports. The problem, though, is that they won’t allow people to differentiate between trans women and biological women. In fact, technically (and ironically in the case of the former) both terms are “transphobic” because they make a distinction between someone born as a female, and someone born male who declares female.

        1. After all, men don’t really care if there are biological women in the same restroom.

          Speak for yourself.

          1. Agree. As a biological female, I don’t want to go into men’s restrooms. I even give hubby privacy in bathrooms at home.

            This, even when our son was “too young to go into public restrooms by himself, but too old for me to take him into women’s bathroom” when just him and I. Result. He’d go into men’s bathroom by himself, with a not stated time limit. At that time limit, really loud: “I’m coming in there in 30 seconds!” Never went in (really, really, did not want to). 99% time, someone would come out and “report” on unaccompanied young minor’s status. Usually, “He is washing his hands”, with a chuckle. Not like some of them hadn’t done the same in reverse with a daughter.

          2. There’s a school where the girls were going into the boys’ room, and the school told them transsexuals were allowed in, and everyone who was uncomfortable had to use the single stall in the nurse’s.

            When 150 of them lined up, they started to punish them.

            1. Who did they punish, though? The ‘bold rebels’ breaking those stuffy societal norms, or the ‘trans-phobic reactionaries’ rejecting their progressive activism?

                1. I know who should be punished, have my suspicions about who probably was punished, and they’re not the same.

                  Just like you’d be the one arrested for pulling a gun on a mugger.

      2. I have to agree with the Co-Ed or Trans Only categories in sports. Having fenced and done martial arts for many years, and being exposed to trans competing in them, the physical differences are manifest to anyone with honesty and a brain. M2F competing against true women is a travesty, and frankly, flat out cheating. And has ANYONE seen a F2M trying to compete in man only sports? Much less actually winning in any? I doubt it.

        1. Although I will admit that pure muscle power is less useful in modern fencing than endurance and way less useful than skill. I had the pleasure to have my ass handed to me repeatedly by a young women who fenced foil in my own weapon (Epee) at the Boston Fencing Club back in the 1990’s. Of course she was an alternate for Barcelona in 1992 and every touch she landed against me was torso. In 3 bouts (15 points for those unfamiliar with the sport) I landed 1 touch on her and that was a lucky double touch. I think all three bouts lasted a total of maybe 3 minutes. She did give me some instruction, the club was very empty and she was happy someone would fence with her. The Foilists knew how good she was and didn’t like to lose. I sucked and so losing was no great embarrassment to me 🙂 .

          1. I got wiped by a former women’s champion of Poland in college. She was yelling at me to be more aggressive.

          2. I don’t LIKE to lose. But even losing I learn something. Strength and speed have a certain quality of their own in fencing; especially on the lunge. The faster you can cover the distance, the less time the opponent has to counter; but that’s leg strength. Hand and wrist strength are what seems to make blade work faster; so if you can crack walnuts with your fingers AND do card and coin tricks, you might also be able to fence well.

            When I was doing martial arts competitions, the speed and power of the guys blow away most of the women at the same skill level. But even a guy at 1st Dan is going to be wary of a gal who is a 3rd Dan, even if she’s only half his weight, and a foot shorter.

            1. Agreed fast is important, but flexibility and speed can make up for sheer muscle power at least some. This young ladies lunge was amazing as she was medium tall (5′ 8″ maybe) but here lunge (and ballestra lunge) were lightning fast. I lived by my reaction time (short eppeeist kind of a weird combo) but she’d close distance before I even knew what was happening, a stop touch was my only hope as she had right of way pounded into her head as a foilist, and even the stop touch only worked once and yielded a double touch on electric scoring so within 40 ms.

          3. I took fencing in college, where my classmate Gordon had been a Junior Olympian in the sport. I was middling okay for a total newbie, but my proudest moment was when I got a touch on him that he didn’t let me get.

            (I was also the only rightie in the class who could effectively fence against the lefties.)

    2. There are times when I could almost want to be on Twitter.

      Being able to post “That’s such a masculine thing to feel” in response to that transactivist’s tweet is one of them.

      1. I told h8m he was getting off sexually on another’s pain,and was therefore literally a sadist.

    3. I was confused when I got called a TERF. Trans-exclusive sure, but I’m a social conservative not a radical feminist.

        1. “Incel” has become that as well.

          The original term “incel” referred to people (mostly male) who wanted relationships with the opposite sex and couldn’t get those relationships.

          Now some idiots have called married men “incels”. 😡

          1. Even better is when they call men with children incels. Damn, where did all those stars in the east come from?

  19. Once you have the captives lying on command, they become, as a group, much easier to control.

    It’s a weird psych-thing, but demonstrably works.

    -That- is why you must be compelled to go along with and agreeably repeat the lies of the day.

          1. Why thank you, madam.curtsies

            I have been pondering a section of dialogue between two characters where that saying is twisted a little. Essentially: “Sometimes, 2+2 does equal 5. You just didn’t see the 1 in the equation.”

            Meaning: “Your conclusion makes perfect sense logically, given the clues you noticed. Your conclusion was also wrong, because a clue that you didn’t notice points to an entirely different result.”

            1. The Reader notes that in math, unlike endeavors involving human interaction, all the clues are on the paper.

              1. And yet somehow, I managed to flip a sign the wrong way… or misplace decimals. And a mistake like that throws everything off. sigh

                At least I’m not planning on going into accounting.

                  1. As much as I want to hit you with a carp, I think chivalry demands I let the lady have the pleasure herself.

                    1. A manlier battle I have not yet witnessed.

                      Also: never bring a pilchard to a trout fight.

                    1. > “Sigh.”

                      Hey, you started the whole carp thing. Where did you think it was going to lead? 😛

                    2. > “I suspect he’s been looking forward to this.”

                      Just finished loading the carpzooka, in fact.

                      Speaking of which… Hey Mike, catch!


                  2. Don’t know. The Reader has known plenty of programmers who were subject to flights of fancy as wild as any writer. Accountants never are. Don’t ask the Reader how he knows.

                    1. My beloved the accountant tries out SF plots on me. And he does an excellent leg-pull when the fit is on him.

                  3. Don’t go into programming either. Those kinds of mistakes can be terminal. (Pun intended.)

                    Yep. Seen a few of those. Never, ever, once, triggered one myself. Never uttered “Well crap. Didn’t mean to do That!” (Believe me? Neither do I. Never Just Once. A few hundred over my career maybe.)

                1. not planning on going into accounting.

                  Actually (not that I remember any) in Accounting there are cheats that provide hints as to why long column of numbers are not balancing. And that was when accounting was 100% pen and paper, no computers involved. I didn’t work on QuickBooks Accounting software. Instead it was Cost Accounting, government accounting. I’d get calls “this isn’t balancing”. Would get on their workstation with them, suddenly it balanced. Every. Time. (I called it “mom is on the computer” effect. Which is why suddenly, without software changes, the software suddenly started working correctly. Others call it PBC&K: Problem Between Chair & Keyboard.)

                  1. I was the opposite. The IT guy would come over, look at mynproble, and say, “Gee, lady, I’ve never seen that one before.”

                    1. I didn’t deal with IT work after ’96 … All software I’d worked on. Don’t get me wrong, I ran into “problems” that technically wasn’t the software fault; or working as written and intended. But still had to be fixed. Boy weren’t those fun.

                      First one was the data key file that was bigger than the data file itself. Cause, way B-Star 1k buffer keys worked against a presorted data file. I could calculate the key file size within 1K, knowing the data file record count and the max possible key file length. Fix was a kludge and depended on not a lot of data being added to the file in question.

                      Second one was multiple billing of single charges against a project, and calculated overhead. Where sum of charges against charged center required an overhead, but most the individual charges did not. Thus sum(round(charge * overhead%)) <> sum(charges) * overhead%, and not by just pennies.

            2. ‘Sometimes, 2+2 does equal 5.’

              For large values of 2.

              Won’t go into the ‘why’ but it used to be possible in some programs to change the value of constants, so “2 = x+5” was a valid statement, after which every usage of “2” was weirded.

                    1. Aha! Never wrote any Forth; did read some, once. When I worked in Detroit, a contractor sold us a license for his spreadsheet program written in Forth for PDP-11/RT-11, I think. About 2 years before the IBM-PC and Lotus 1-2-3 …

              1. ” And this, children, is why we do not round decimals until all the calculation is done.”

                  1. Whoops, didn’t realize the punchline would be cut off. The text at the bottom is “0.5 + 0.5 is not 1.”

    1. Got set up in the new project management software at work, and when the profile page, you’re asked to choose your pronouns. My coworkers may now speak of me as an attack helicopter if they wish.

            1. I’ve heard of a Dragon that ATTTEMPTED to eat a Minotaur.

              The Dragon had extreme stomach pains and the Minotaur survived. 😉

                1. Well, there’s one version of the story where the Minotaur convinced the Dragon that he (the Minotaur) would taste better raw. [Very Big Crazy Grin]

          1. “Why smilest thou, Lord Dragon, Sir?” asked our hero in armor laden.
            “Why, you’d smile too” the wyrm replied “if you’d just eaten a maiden!”


        1. I actually don’t know. To tell you the truth, I was too excited about finally geting to identify as an attack helicopter I forgot to see if it was optional. 😀

  20. Ah yes, words… just making them “different” will fix everything! The fools in government are also great at doing this which was one of the compelling reasons for my retirement when I walked out.

    I was in the field of ‘corrections’ you know, the big prison building where the misunderstood of society are housed? Yeah – it used to be the folks living in the big house were called ‘prisoners’ but that was harsh so it became ‘convict’ to identify those who are there for an identified reason and time. At some point that was found to be a demeaning term and it became ‘offender’ as in you did a society no-no and upset or offended the community. The day I walked out the office door my poor colleague was rewriting policy to change “offender” to “incarcerated individual” so it would be more acceptable and sooth social feelings.

    As an aside I always enjoyed teaching the officers report writing and how to say things about an incident – example: “I assisted the offender in the hallway to the floor to ensure his safety and those of my fellow officers.” Translation: “I tackled that sucker into the hallway wall hard enough to put him in next week.” Words are important and we need to careful of how they are used and be aware of who will hear/read them too!

    1. There may not be much I admire about the British these days, but humorous understatement is always delightful. Particularly when united with powerful subtext.

      Garak: “I’d hate to see her fall… victim to fashion.”

  21. “So it annoys me very much that the left both attributes impossible power to words “As they say it, so it will be” and that words can control reality and the world.”

    It’s a half truth misapplied. As so many of their things are. We all know the power of the mental scripts, the one that says “I can do this” or “I’m such a failure I never get anything right”, and the power of the words of the folks who set an intention for the year, the “Observe Nature” or “Involve the children” and write it on their bathroom mirror and see it every morning and how it works for them to have those words reminding them of the thing every couple hours through the day.

    It doesn’t work on other people. It has to be your own words–slight caveat around children and family: ‘you can never do anything right’ seems to in fact get into other folks’ heads remarkably too well.

    It doesn’t change the physical structure of things, except in as far as the actions of the people may change it, that is, if your intention is to sew daily you might very well end up with sewing skills, recovered furniture, and a new wardrobe.

    Half-truth. Misapplied. Again.

    1. The left engages in reverse cognitive behavioral therapy on a daily basis:

      “I am a victim”
      “I cannot accomplish anything as an individual”
      “All my problems are someone else’s fault”

      Back in the ’90s I helped my not-yet first wife through teacher’s school. They were taught that an “external locus of control” was a harmful thing for a child to have, and that an “internal locus of control” meant they would be more resilient and able to thrive and survive. Sometime in the ’00s that got thrown away and external loci became the celebrated thing.

      1. Internal locus of control usually also means you don’t give a rat’s patoot about what others think.

        And it’s a great ‘buzz phrase’.

  22. One of my favorite scenes in My Fair Lady is Henry describing to Eliza, just before the ball, the power and majesty of the English language.

    The perversion infuriates me. And I refuse to comply.

    1. Just before the radical change in her accent and diction was what I noticed. In spite of her intention to learn to talk like a lady, she had been fiercely resisting any change in her speech habits for months.

  23. If they keep screwing around with the language, why . . . words could mean whatever the writer wanted them to mean. Hmmmm. I vaguely remember that theme from somewhere.

    That could lead a total imbecile writer to a Nobel Prize in Literature, if carried to the logical conclusion. Not that that hasn’t already happened,

      1. There was a Portuguese word in yesterday’s Sunday school lesson. I will butcher the spelling (desencra- I forget) but was said to mean tacking a project with no tools and no idea of how to handle it.

          1. Desenrascanco, defined by her as, “solving a problem through a completely improvised solution for which we lacked the tools.”

            1. Um… Desencaraçar means literaly “to undick” as in a situation is “dicked” and you fix it.
              I don’t think it’s a real word in continental Portuguese. But Brazilians will do what Brazilians will do.

            2. Oh, sorry, you misspelled, so I went the wrong direction. “Desenrascar” is the verb. It means to …. get yourself out of trouble or be fast about a solution, or something like that. While McGivering a solution would fall under that, yes, it’s not its main meaning. It’s main meaning ranges from getting out of a bind, to figuring out how to do something (like acquire a document) when the process isn’t clear. It’s the PRIMARY virtue Portuguese hanker after. The culture values Desenrasco including speed over exactness. So if you stop to figure out a problem, they tell you to stop that and Desenrasca-te.
              I imagine there’s really no way to explain the meaning in English in and American context.
              Except maybe the military “Get ‘er done”

              1. Ah. I was wondering if someone had given the nice lady American minister a….softer translation.
                She doesn’t say how or why she knew Portuguese, though she admits to French.

                1. desembarac(with cedilla)ado can mean anything from someone who rolls up sleeves and goes to it to McGuivering it. But…. it’s so wrapped up in the culture it’s almost impossible to translate. lit. it means “Without being bound.”

          1. Besides, IIRC there was a valid reason; Archie (pardon me, “archie”) couldn’t deal with the shift key.

      1. I was thinking about Humpty’s “explanation” about words in Through the Looking Glass.

        As soon as I find it, I’ll post it.

        1. “Words mean exactly what I want them to mean, no more, no less. It’s simply a question of who is to be the master.” (Note: Probably not exact, but close.)

    1. From Lewis Carroll’s “Through the Looking Glass”

      “But ‘glory’ doesn’t mean ‘a nice knock-down
      argument,’” Alice objected.

      “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful
      tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor

      “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make
      words mean so many different things.”

      “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be
      master—that’s all.”

      End Quote

      The Left wants to be the Masters.

  24. Liars want us to drop using words because the truth in them hurts. What needs to change is them. Don’t want to be spoken of with contempt? Stop being contemptible.
    And no being an official doesn’t make you any less contemptible. It just means you have played the rules to make speaking truth a crime.
    They’ve been doing this forever. An example is economic or the science of lying about money.
    In the 1800s an economic crash was honestly called after the precipitating human emotion – it was a PANIC.
    They thought it a kinder gentler word to call it a depression. Then the Great Depression broke through – as reality keeps doing – and ruined that word.
    Now, a Depression is a word to sow – Panic. Funny how that works.
    They have similarly ruined recession and any label the put on ruining the value of your money will eventually devolve to reality. The very definition of money has been eclipsed until there is not a dictionary definition that isn’t a lie.

    The same with racial labels. A negro was a reasonable word. Changing it to African American was supposed to suddenly make the disrespect with which negro was said disappear. Instead – the new label acquired the same dislike when people say it as an audible slur. Now they mock the required word as a lie by substituting Joggers or Amish as a sarcastic substitute. The magical thinkers will just never understand that changing the label doesn’t make anyone suddenly forget their prejudices. Who’d a thunk it?

  25. “They keep changing the meaning of words, and demanding we use the words they want us to, because they think if only everyone is using the same words, it will control everyone’s thoughts, and then automagically the world will change and be a paradise.”

    Which is in complete contradiction to their very own screed about the value of diversity. Part of the value of knowing multiple languages is that different words, different structures, impose different ways of thinking about the world, and can often open solutions to things that the mono-linguistic wouldn’t otherwise consider. The same can be said, just not so broadly, about people who have a greater vocabulary in a single language.

    Changing the meaning of words from those commonly accepted leads to confusion and chaos, not improved communication. And inevitably, these changes in meaning are made to reduce the number of possible words to describe things. Exactly the situation the George Orwell warned us about in his novel, 1984. The goal of the Left is to destroy the use of the thesaurus.

    1. It has sadly come to the point that thinking and knowledge themselves are viewed by the left as prejudice and privilege. You are not supposed to think, you are supposed to feel and yell and protest when needed, that is your only value to the world, as a loud mob. They don’t teach people how to think anymore, and their is never anything but good results from their efforts.
      * See Portland Oregon or any major Democrat/Communist controlled city now shows.
      The only way they can legitimize this in their minds is if they consider man separate from the animals. Anyone who has seen real conflict knows man is just the smartest animal, BUT, he is still an animal. If our world does not give us what we want, we will tear it down and rebuild it to suit our new desires. Man is as natural to the world as a bee or a blade of grass and if the world gets tired of us it will shake us off like a bad case of fleas. A clever animal man, but still an animal indeed.

  26. Maybe a words anonymous organization is just around the corner; “Hello, my name is Jim. I’ve been newspeak for six months, seven days now (Clapping sounds.). I’m reading and enjoying Agatha Christie’s Ten Height Challenged First Nations Inhabitants. I was often gay before meaning changed (Claps, admiring looks. ) . I must admit most of my friends are a bit queer.”…

    Shouts of, “Send him to rehab!”, “Intervention, intervention!”, “To reeducation camp!”, ….

  27. A reported incident at a college/uni sent me off into snickering, quite nastily. Apparently, someone put up two bins in the room with the copier/printer, to recycle the paper on copies that didn’t work out right, rather than just throw them away. One bin was labeled “white paper” and the other “colored paper” which someone amended to read “paper of color” – and the racial-warrior set went completely bughouse nuts.

    1. Ahem.

      Observed said signs at a college I attended after Army.

      Wrote “we shall overcome” on both.

    2. I remember this as an anecdote from maybe thirty years ago. Whatever collegiate bureaucrat had authority over the matter did have a semi-conniption, saying that if it was a joke it was execrable and racist. In the next breath, that factotum said that if this was a serious concern about nomenclature then the amender should come see him/her/it about the matter.

      The Left has been eating out its own liver over wokeness for a quarter-century before it was even called wokeness, back when it was still political correctness. Not that history may not have repeated itself in the incident you recall, but … sheesh, this junk has been going on for a long, long time. Back to the 80s, at least. And I hope I mean the 1980s.

    3. I got a college activist worked into knots by arguing that if African-Americans are “people of color,” then most Anglos are “people of pinkness.” And doing it with complete confused innocence and a straight face.

      She didn’t realize that the students behind her were about to die trying not to laugh. Today, I’d be expelled for that sort of thing. SIGH

      1. When I was a brand new immigrant and therefore presumed to be ignorant, I found that the presumption conferred a strange type of immunity, which I felt duty bound to exploit.

        Like the time I walked into an IRS office, looked at all the signs warning that guns were prohibited and asked the guy “What did you do?”

  28. On a completely different note: need a meme:

    Technicolor glowy is jumping up and down on Yellowstone saying “Come on, do something already!”

      1. My guess is that it’s based on the idea that the Yellowstone Caldera is due to erupt sometime in the near future (said eruption would be deadly to North America) and the idiot wants the eruption to happen.

        On the other hand, it would be funnier if the idiot was jumping on (or near) the Old Faithful geyser wanting Old Faithful to erupt.

        1. Pretty much. I’m seeing a lot of folks either trying to stir stuff because they thing they can ride it or pushing to see how much they can get away with, and I don’t thing anyone has any clue how bad it’s going to be if they succeed.

          I sort of expect things to go from zero to radical-spinectomy in the blink of an eye.

          1. I tend to think of such things in terms of tensile strength. A ‘hair-trigger temper’ snaps as easily as a single hair under stress, but doesn’t carry much energy when it does. At least, comparatively.

            Find someone with a ‘steel-cable temper’ and push ’em to the breaking point… actually, don’t do that. Ever. If you’re very unlucky, you’ll live to regret it. If you’re not that badly off, everyone around you will regret your idiocy.

            Because as previously stated, displayed corpse parts tend to reek after a while.

            1. > “Because as previously stated, displayed corpse parts tend to reek after a while.”

              But sometimes you just need to get your Vlad the Impaler on. Indeed, some fools practically invite you to do so…

              1. No one with a brain, a knowledge of history and an active imagination wants the switch flipped, but I suspect if things continue to deteriorate for their Great Social Experiment they’ll force it to flip. Being sane, we won’t like the process that results, but they probably won’t have an opinion, being no longer in condition to care…

      2. Yellowstone, the dormant supervolcano.

        Not sure how to show it, but it feels like the signs of the times.

        Been reading on personality type stuff. Found an interesting thing called the enneagram. It has a bit more woo-woo than I like, but the core thing is it’s based on our dominant/prefered coping mechanism. Type 9 is the “peacemaker”. The core coping mechanism is conflict avoidance, because the core emotion they struggle with is anger, and they prefer to side step it entirely, rather than vent it (Type 8: Challenger) or turn it inwards (Type 1: Reformers). So they bend and negotiate and accomodate if that will bring them peace. Until there is no more bend to give. Push too far and they will make a desert and call that peace, because peace is what they want above all else, regardless of what it takes to acquire it.

        1. Thanks for mentioning the Enneagram, I looked it up and found out I’m a Type 1. When I read through explanations, my response was largely, “No surprises there.”

        2. Took the test on Truity; apparently I’m mainly a 6, with large dollops of 5, 7, 8 and 9, some of which seem mutually contradictory. of course, that’s no real surprise; personality tests aren’t exactly hard science.

          1. Mine was completely wrong. I know how they got there, but it was all about how I’m stuck and envious.
            And it was like “No, you did that from my ‘professional position” only because you didn’t have my real one, so I improvised.
            They interpreted “I’m different” and “I”m no one special” to fit with “Mind work, not management.” Is all. Bah. Completely wrong. A 4 by a fraction, and about three others equilateral.

            1. In my senior year of HS (1963) we were give a “psychological test” to allegedly determine our best careers. When mine came up as “Social Worker” (and after my laughter subsided) it cemented my opinion of psych tests; at that time “Vlad Tepes Understudy” would have been much closer.

              1. The Reader thinks that while you may not have been the social worker they wanted, you were the one they needed.

                1. Well, not at the time or in that place (Florida, 1963 – social work). But my self-identified one would be a good fit now. 🙂

                1. No surprise; any psych test which claims to be objectively accurate is as delusional (or disingenuous) as claimed sightings of unicorns, or of faeries in the garden.

          2. One of the thing to also keep in mind, it’s focused around coping mechanisms, and they do tend to both bleed into each other and have fallback modes when they don’t work and some of those fall back mechanisms can be very different from the base mechanism. That’s the whole integration/deintegration thing.

            Part of that means we can have very contradictory responses to things, and because one of the reactions is disassociation, we don’t always see our own motives. I’m always skeptical of any system that in bed assessing that, but here it is more a case of watching what you actually do and seeing which set of predictions it matches.

            So the tests are useful, but the more useful part seems to be asking yourself “am I doing the thing?” And once you spotted the thing you do, asking “should I be doing the thing?” Sometimes the answer is yes, but sometimes it is no. But knowing what thing you do lets you start being intentional about it, instead of just letting autopilot fly things.

  29. Well said, and we sure as hell don’t need ‘word police’ looking over our shoulders and telling us what we can or cannot write.

    1. The left believe in the Christian heresy of Millennialism. They think they can physically bring about heaven on earth through their and others own efforts.

      I’m not sure if the conversation was here, from a few years ago, but someone linked to a socialist forum where there was a thread about how world hunger was solvable if only everyone grew a vegetable garden in their front yard and shared with everyone. These were, of course, not gardeners.

      Back on the conservative forum? Comment section? Where the link was placed, gardeners talked about the sheer amount of money and/or time, that went into a vegetable garden, and how, they might be giving away zucchini to any takers, as is the nature of a good season of zucchini, but the vegetables were theirs and that they would not be willing to put the effort in to garden if any yahoo could take the product of their capital and labor.

      Also, the left knows their ideas are vile. That’s why they have to steal previously ‘good’ words like ‘liberal’ to hide that they support slavery, and class systems.

      A lot of people are word people. I had that brought home to me recently when talking about the five languages of love in a singles group I’m in. Two of the guys, who are left apologists, both felt they were affirmation(words) and touch. I recalled that I was acts of service and gift giving. And commented that while nice words are nice, words are cheap.

      I realized that I always watch to see if people walk the walk. Pretty words alone don’t move me. Probably why I’m so right wing. Also why I’m so bad at online dating. I really do not feel I know a person till I see how they act in normal everyday situations.

      I will give some lefties credit, sometimes locally they really do walk the walk. But they project their behavior on to others that are far away, and then want to sell everyone into slavery to the pretty word tyrant far away.

      Some of the problems we are having right now is that the decision makers are so disconnected from reality that they can’t discern what is plausible from what was obviously a grift.

      1. Trained parrot.


        “It’s just a scam!”

        “It’s just a scam.”


  30. When I was in junior high school, around the time when you were born, one of our teachers told us that the technical words for what was later called mental retardation were “moron,” “imbecile,” and “idiot.” Each corresponded roughly to an IQ range: 51-75, 26-50, and 0-25, respectively, I believe. Those words were already on the way out, courtesy of moron jokes (Q: Why did the moron throw the clock out the window? A: He wanted to see time fly!) and the use of all three words as insult. So they introduced the new technical term “mental retardation,” divided, I believe, into educable, trainable, and custodial. But of course “retard” became a new insult.
    The trouble is that there are certain topics that human beings regard negatively, and words that refer to them cannot remain neutral; they take on the negativity. Even if you insist that a word is positive, it will become negative, which is how we acquired “gay” as an expression of contempt. So trying to change attitudes by changing language is a fool’s errand.

  31. Not totally off topic, but borderline, I’ve recently re-read an old Richard Prather Shell Scott novel, “The Death Dealers.” It was his last novel, and published in 2011 postumously. The premise of a non-existant disease and the efforts of a Laboratory to isolate it and then for a large pharmaceutical company to manufacture it, followed by mandatory inoculations is beyond creepy!

  32. These people aren’t wizards, mages exploring the outer edges of reality with logic, reason, and developing the toolsets to comprehend the incomprehensible.

    They’re cultists of the worst sort, believers in the One True Religion. Those who would chant the words, speak the invocations of the Kitab al-Azif or the Communist Manifesto and if they have enough believers and followers…they can call upon their dread sovereigns to make the world into the place they want it to be.

    If you won’t join them in their chanting or God forbid stray out of tune or speak the wrong words…why, there’s a place for you. Chained to the altar and the knife carving out your heart… And if you scream how you don’t want to be a part of it, the Gods don’t care where the blood comes from so long as it flows.

    We know what the faithful are of the One True Religion are. In some ways, Great Aunt, we know them far too well because we can see what they are doing. How they act and what they are calling with their piety.

    I know what the One True Religion looks like.
    I know what their miracles cost.
    And, I know what to do with the followers of that faith when I find them.

  33. Something that crossed my mind with some of the stuff I’ve seen recently…

    The reason why we know that there isn’t time travel isn’t because no time traveler has assassinated Adolf Hitler. The reason why we know that there’s no time travel is because no time traveler has assassinated Paul Erlich.

    I’ve had a thought recently in my mind of a scene. A time traveler from our era goes back to the ’70s for some reason, announces himself to a group of influential individuals in a way that causes them to completely believe him, and then is forced to fend off a bunch of questions about projected calamities in the near future – such as the supposed population bomb – that never happened.

    Unfortunately, it’s just a scene. And a scene in this case doesn’t make a plot.

    1. There is no (reverse) time travel. If there were, retail & food service workers would build/buy/steal/hijack/whatever a ‘time machine’ and go beat the ever-loving [SNOT] out of the guy that started “The Customer is Always Right.”

  34. T.S. Eliot wrote about our era, sometimes accidentally.

    “They constantly try to escape
    From the darkness outside and within
    By dreaming of systems so perfect that no one will need to be good.
    But the man that is will shadow
    The man that pretends to be.”

  35. Have they gone after Taylor? I mean it’s a profession that comes in to gender varieties.

    I have noticed over the course of my life that about every 15 years somebody tries to market “unisex” clothing/fashion and it inevitably fails. T-shirts are about the closest we get, and they’re still only ever marketed in mens and womens sizes/cuts.

    And don’t get me started about haute couture fashion shows that try to put men in skirts. Fashion shows, even from famous names, are one-off art projects and are intended to be ridiculous. A year later, some of the concepts might get toned waaayyyyy down and incorporated into the designer’s ready-to-wear line. But for some reason (and no, it’s not “oppression”) men in skirts never catches on.

    Okay: utilikilts. But they specifically imitate an article of ethnic men’s clothing and are not cut like skirts are, which is why you can tell the difference between a male and female in Highland dress even if they’re the same size and you can’t see their front.

    Actually, I remember running across the inventor of the Utilikilt when he was a loudmouth rando with a booth at the Fremont Street Fair in Seattle. Not in a million years would I have thought they would catch on.

    1. “which is why you can tell the difference between a male and female in Highland dress”

      The part that’s always amused me about women in kilts is that they look to my eyes like they’re cross-dressing.

      Which, they are, of course. But you wouldn’t think it would be so obvious in a culture that is accustomed to seeing women in knee-length pleated skirts.

  36. “… what I have are Words. Words that make me a nightmare for people like you….”

    Author, “Written”

  37. Wow I can’t believe that I read through all of these comments and no one asserted the proper term is needlewomen, since the Seamstresses’ Guild (hem, hem) refers to something else.

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