Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Modern Dictionary I

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. ...

Inigo Montoya

Most debates are a matter of language. Get the language right, and you can make the other guy look stupid before you even begin. Take Mr. Key's sermon against the flat tax the other week--he kept saying "fair" as in "the tax system should be fair..."

What he means by this is "the tax system should (look like) it's hurting the rich so I look moderate, unlike Roger Douglas."

Likewise, Labour's "listening tour" of the Provinces means "tell us what packaging we have to change on the same policies to persuade you they're different,"

In an attempt to decode similar political terms, here is the first installment of the Examiner Modern Dictionary.


1. Public Debate: (noun)

"I am calling for a public debate on changing the flag/capital gains tax"

Real meaning: "We'll talk about this really really stupid and politically suicidal idea until you get used to it and think it's inevitable. Then we'll throw in a few moderating amendments until you think it very well could be worse...."

2. Inclusive (adj)

"I believe in an inclusive society"

Real meaning: "I believe in a society which legally accommodates all those fashionable interest groups which could give me political trouble later on, or which can be the subject of a sympathetic documentary making me look bad..."

This is also known as the Bridget Jones Doctrine, as in: "Labour is for gays, single mothers, and Nelson Mandela"

3. Diverse (adj)

"I am concerned about the lack of diversity in the Cabinet..."

Real meaning: "Enough fashionable minorities (cf 2) to look culturally sensitive on television.

4. Efficient (adj)

"We are changing the government service to be more efficient"

Real meaning: Mechanical, and lacking in initiative (cf Market Forces)

More to come.

1 comment:

danielle.windfuhr said...

This was very funny. Looking forward to more.

PS Love Bridget Jones. Don't diss her too much ;)