Posted by: JDM..... | August 19, 2014

Power by Newspeak…

and other political parlor tricks…

As the emperor continues to strut about the White House and local golf courses as though he knows what he is doing, and as if everybody else thinks he’s as peachy keen as he does, I recall an article I read earlier this year that also fit right in with the current obsession with “appearances”. These days, if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it probably is NOT a duck, even though it may have papers asserting otherwise. In this Age of the Wall Hanger, what you see isn’t necessarily what you get. What’s actually under the hood is irrelevant.

It was back at the beginning of summer, I believe, that I noticed an item about the closing of some Social Security field offices and that the writer had made reference to the “customers” of the agency. Being somewhat fascinated with the uptick in Newspeak intrusions in recent times, I took a moment to dust off the old Webster’s I keep handy and look the word up.


  • someone who buys goods or services from a business

  • one that purchases a commodity or service

Being retired, I now receive Social Security income each month, but I did not purchase it. In fact, I had no choice in the matter. the federal government began helping itself to a portion of my earnings in 1958 and continued to do so for the next fifty years. That isn’t to say I don’t appreciate the money. I most certainly do. But I raise an eyebrow whenever language is “tweaked” to normalize government activities and equate them to things like free enterprise, entrepreneurship, and the like. Nor is it necessarily a charitable stipend for which I should feel humbly grateful. I paid for it, and I have to say, if government was indeed a “business” and Social Security had been my Investment Advisor or broker, I’d have fired their ass forty years ago. Had the same amount been invested and managed according to some fundamental investment guidelines, I would be far better off than I am as far as income is concerned, and I’d still own the principal. It’s should be pointed out that the two classes of people traditionally involved with Ponzi schemes, which is precisely what Social Security is, have been referred to as “sharks” and “suckers”, not “representatives” and “customers”.

Social Security is not a “business”. People don’t walk in off the street to purchase a product. Those of us who have worked and paid taxes all of our lives access Social Security to begin receiving the benefits we have been promised, even though government has had few qualms about changing the rules as they go along. If it was a “business” and I was a “customer”, I, too would have the option to change my plans if I felt like it. Those who have become disabled, or who have a lifelong chronic disability, come in to apply for support. They are not “customers”, either.

I consider myself to be a “claimant“, and would prefer that the relationship be described that way.


One may wonder why I would object. Perhaps it seems a bit nit-picky. Not too many years ago I might have scoffed at the choice of words as a bit silly and mistaken, but I wouldn’t have made an issue out of it.

I would argue that I’m not making an issue of it, however; the “issue” has achieved its current state without any input from me whatsoever. Pointing out something offensive on the lawn doesn’t mean I put it there. The fact of the matter is, the depth to which government has assumed authority over the personal choices and behaviors of the citizen has grown in direct proportion to the level of responsibility that government has assumed over the care and feeding of same. Our language changes almost imperceptibly to adapt and preserve the assumption that the old definitions apply to the new relationships.

Remember sitting down at the dinner table in the evening, back when people actually did such a thing? Any negative remarks or complaints regarding the fare presented was, at best, met with a stern reminder that when you assumed the responsibility of paying for the goods, you might have a voice in their selection. Children, however, arrive totally dependent and the natural responsibility of caring for that little human being belongs to the parent, the parent’s task being to progressively wean the child of his dependency until the only thing left for the parent to do is mow the lawn, go to the beach, and play golf, or maybe just sit on the porch and do absolutely nothing.

The United States government is not, and never has been, the parent of the people. On the contrary, it is the people who are supposed to make choices for, and direct the activities and behaviors of the United States government!

When government begins to take on the appearance of a parental authority, the problem is not with the government itself, unless its underlying structure and marching orders have been legally altered. Barring such fundamental changes, the transition from a government that serves and protects to one that feeds and directs, is clear indication that one part of the population has hijacked the controls and manipulated the underlying structure and marching orders to require the rest of the population to fulfill its needs and cater to its desires. This is precisely what the Founders feared the most and labored to prevent.


So, having sidled by, whistling idly and gazing into space while nevertheless watching to see whether or not the progression from servant to partner managed to go over with minimal stink, the US government has made the first leap into the role of the served and protected Master, under the guise of server and protector. Steeped heavily in Newspeak, the Affordable Care Act is neither affordable nor caring. Furthermore, those who actually believe an unknown lawyer from Illinois simply marched in, laughed “Ta daaaaa,” and shoved a nationalized healthcare system through Congress before his suitcase was unpacked, just because he’s a sharp cookie, might be interested in some oceanfront property I have for sale in Arizona.

The Newspeak lexicon has thus nearly reached the stage of growth where it has the very real potential to become an accepted and normalized language. Scary thought.

I subscribe to no established party’s mottos, alleged principles, or other verbiage because new meanings have been slathered over old words and concepts to the point that corruption and abuse of power have been normalized. Having been encouraged early on to “use my squash,” and being temperamentally inclined to ask “why” and not to take “because” as an answer, I find it difficult to simply take the word of an alleged authority figure. Other than voluntarily having once put myself briefly into a circumstance where I had to do so and salute at the same time, I have pretty consistently made up my own mind about things wherever has been possible and practical. Situations involving higher mathematics excluded.

By so doing, while I may have appeared the idiot to some on occasion, I have never to my knowledge willingly followed one. I don’t intend to start now, either.

I subscribe to the fundamental ideas of the gentlemen who authored the framework for this nation, and who thereby exclaimed with the great authority born of first hand experience, that government should always serve the governed, and never the other way around.

We have work to do.


~-~* * *~-~



  1. I haven’t heard anyone speak so much truth in quite a while. Very well said. If we don’t get the current administration out PDQ we, the people, are in for a world of hurt. Someone posted this, on Facebook the other day. I think Paul Harvey must have had a premonition.

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