Thursday, September 6, 2012

Ron Paul on the definitions of words

Politicians routinely use deceptive and evasive language. One exception is Ron Paul, who actually encourages us to think carefully about the words we hear, read and use. For example, he recently wrote:
Without precise meanings behind words, politicians and elites can obscure reality and condition people to reflexively associate certain words with positive or negative perceptions. In other words, unpleasant facts can be hidden behind purposely meaningless language. As just one example, Americans have been conditioned to accept the word “democracy” as a synonym for freedom. Thus we are conditioned to believe that democracy is always and everywhere benevolent.

The problem is that democracy is not freedom. Democracy is simply majoritarianism, which is inherently incompatible with freedom. (Source)
I don’t recall any other living politician talking about words in this straightforward way. If you know of one, please let me know, via email to joeroy(at)joeroy(dot)com or via a comment on this post.

Disclaimer: Please note that this post is not a political endorsement of Ron Paul. As I state in my general disclaimer, I promote no political position. In fact, I ignore politics except as a source of examples for this blog.

The Takeaway: Read the rest of the article. It’s brief (only 477 words) but provocative. It challenges us to question our long-standing acceptance of words whose definitions have been deliberately subverted.

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