Archive for September 2011
The issue of offensiveness has meaning only when people try to communicate with each other. The meaning of a word in that case is not established by a third-party such as a dictionary or even common usage, but by the people that are trying to communicate.
Hence it makes no sense to ask that refusal of a word be based on this or that reason. If a friend of mine asks me to stop using the word “negro” in Italian, as it happened >20 years ago, I don’t even try to probe the reasons, even if the dictionary says otherwise. After all I’m talking to a person, not a dictionary.
Likewise in a climate discussion if somebody says they don’t like “denier” or “warmist” or “Minion of the House of Mann and Gore”, all references should be stopped, and all attempts to reintroduce them be considered an attempt at killing communication.
Doesn’t sound too hard to comprehend.
And before anybody complains about my SS jokes, well, I wasn’t exactly trying to communicate with dana1981 and Skeptical Science was I?
(letter sent to the Editors of the International Herald Tribune)
Say what you will of Italy and its Prime Minister, there remains one powerful counterpoint to Silvio Berlusconi, resolutely bringing him a large amount of support: the intolerable pseudo-intellectualism that makes Frank Bruni and his (selected) Italian sources believe there is any correlation between “having a higher education” and “voting Left” (see Frank Bruni’s “The Affliction of Comfort”, IHT, 19 Sep 2011 ).
It doesn’t take much really to understand the utter inability to govern of a political side (such as the Italian Leftists) incapable for two decades of overcoming Mr Berlusconi and his supporters. To consistently lose against people despised as mentally inferior, it is the best evidence of being even more intellectually challenged than them.