Glossary: an anatomy of key memes, euphemisms, sneers, innuendos, and metanarratives in the Wall Street Journal and other GOP language factories, June 9-15 2014

anchor of stability (Iraq): nostalgia for a lost world that never was; the fleeting phantom of Middle East peace and stability, rooted in Baghdad

the approved victim scorecard: part of the so-called “victim industry,” this meme is just another version of what used to be sneeringly called “political correctness”. Implies that every liberal position is politically calculated and has no moral center.(See below, “privilege of sexual assault victims”).

crusaders: mocking, belittling term for anyone with a strong belief, taking a principled stand. Thus those who support the free market are said to be taking a common sense, moral stand, but anyone “supporting” (as if it’s a matter of opinion) climate change or inequality, is a crusader. This also implies that such liberals are fighting a holy war.

cronyism: what Dems do when they govern, only “ladling out” (or, see below, “funnel”) benefits to their politically-correct friends. When Republicans do this, it’s just called governing.

frivolity (self-indulgence, silliness):increasingly, almost any policy position or initiative the Obama administration undertakes. Implies that they are amateur and childish.

funneling: what cronys do.

hacks: any Congressional Democrat, administration official, or member of the “lame stream media”.

post-American world: assuming that America has abdicated its position of dominant world power, this is the GOP version of a Hobbesian world where either power or religious fanaticism rule. America as a “pitiful, helpless giant”. This is yet another false GOP binary: either intervene forcefully in Syria, Egypt, Libya, the Ukraine, Iraq, etc. or cravenly disengage. This lack of a middle ground of constructive engagement implies that everyone else in the world is “other”.

privilege (of sexual assault victims): George Will’s particularly vile column suggesting that college women bring sexual assault charges to gain instant social and political prestige and advantage. How long will it be before the GOP starts insinuating that “charges” of slavery are used for political privilege?

trampling: what Dem policies do to democracy, speech, religious freedom, the free market, etc.

 

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