Posted by: JDM..... | September 14, 2015

WORDS II

that have worn out their welcome. ….

Backalong, as they say in some parts of Maine, I posted the introductory version of a blog topic about words that have become changed over time to the point of being confusing, at best. Some are obviously “Newspeak”, coined and force-fed to the masses in order to normalize asinine political or cultural concepts and behaviors. Some words, many from the latter category, have simply worn out their welcome through gross overuse. the first example I chose was:

AWESOME

and people seemed to agree. Here, I would like to present Offal Word II for your consideration.

***

In the first posting, I explained that, with the passing of such sources of quality communication as Real Journalism, William F. Buckley, and several others that come to mind, our language has been getting stale.

Each generation historically has dumped the “must know” lexicon of its predecessor, created at least one new term or word out of thin air, and perhaps redefined some formerly unremarkable word into the newest obscenity.

Advances in science and technology contribute their share of new words, phrases, and concepts to the language as well, of course, and one of the most prolific offenders is politics.

It had occurred to me while searching for some cerebral sustenance one evening that, every so often, an old word or turn of phrase fails to be retired, replaced, rendered obscene, or to just fade away or to have the common decency to simply take a hike and never be heard from again. Politically spawned terminology quite often is distorted from the moment of its inception, sometimes through misguided passion and sometimes on purpose, and today’s nominee is an example. Such hangers-on deserve to be eliminated, which is one of my reasons for missing the surgically precise word symphonies of Buckley and the knowledge-based commentary of great journalists. Dead words should be pushing up daisies. Malformed and corrupted usages should be abandoned.

I’d like to suggest another candidate for verbal extinction should the opportunities arise.

NEED

An otherwise legitimate term with an honorable history, the meaning of this word has been expanded and broadened to become confused with WANT, and the availability of publicly owned or produced goods, services, and money for redistribution by some government agency or private sector non-profit subcontractor.

(to be continued…)

 

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