Redistributive Vocabulary

June 25, 2011

What is a liberal? Look it up in the dictionary and you’ll get confused. That’s because in most of the rest of the world, “liberal” basically means conservative or more specifically, libertarian. This is because, some years ago, Progressives figured out they were unpopular so they began identifying themselves with Democrats. When Democrats realized they were identified as “liberal” and that was unpopular, the move back to “progressive” was on. They didn’t change their policies or ideology. Instead, they changed their label.

“Words have meanings” is a common political football of a phrase. Nobody knows this better than the party of a thousand verbal disguises. Ronald Reagan made one of the best references to this phenomenon when he criticized JIimmy Carter for saying that the US was not in a recession because of the very technical definition of the word that Carter fished out of a textbook. “Millions of Americans are suffering and Jimmy Carter chooses to hide behind a dictionary.” That’s not an exact quote but it’s close enough I don’t feel like looking it up.

Most people will be familiar with many of these ploys. Take for example “illegal immigrants” who are now “undocumented workers” much as I was an “undocumented pharmacist” many years ago. Not only is the attempt to shift public opinion by infusing the label with excessive nuance, it’s also an attempt to shift the debate by changing the definition. If “illegal immigration is a problem, we look to the LAW and IMMIGRATION to formulate a solution. If we like our law, then the solution to illegal immigration is to enforce immigration law. If the problem is “undocumented workers” we’re talking about people who are working (supposedly but irrelevant) who lack “documentation” (something that is in the left’s wheel house – more bureaucratic busy-work we can use to funnel taxpayer money into the hands of ivy-league pencil pushers with law degrees).

I was in an argument with your average twitter liberal/nihilist troll yesterday in which I was maintaining that Barack Obama was a War Criminal. He called me a liar. My response was thatCongress had debated about whether or not the President had violated the War Powers act and, in a bipartisan vote, decided that he had. So I argue, he broke a LAW concerning WAR – hence he was found “guilty” by a jury of his peers, or as close as you can come to it. Simple, really, but NO…we had to debate whether or not this was a formal charge. We didn’t even get into the President’s ridiculous claim that he was in the clear because bombing Libya didn’t constitute “hostilities.” SRSLY?  If you buy that line of crap, I feel like I can take all your stuff and argue it wasn’t theft. Words may have meanings but that hardly matters to the ideology and attached political party that has brought you such classics as “Well it depends on what your definition of ‘is’ is.”