On name-calling

THE UNSEEN MOON prides itself on decorum, a characteristic that slides further into disuse on a daily basis, not here, of course, but in the society at large.

The Moon soldiers on, however, in the old-fashioned way.

A commenter on the previous post cited name-calling and finger-pointing. It was a little vague, unclear as to whether I was the name-caller and finger-pointer or if the other commenters were the culprits.

Perhaps a bit of both.

callI confess to finger-pointing, which is to say: Lookee there! He (or she) is causing the problem. This is being judgmental, an admirable trait, especially when the judgments are the same as mine.

But I never name-call. Again, one man’s meat, as they say, is another man’s poison, so the nomenclature seen regularly here might possibly by considered name-calling by some folks.

Let’s look at three examples, my favorites:

1. Barry.  This is President Barack Hussein Obama, the lame-duck president. Barry was, perhaps still is, a nickname he used. I use it for only one purpose: to trivialize him. So sue me. I’m not a fan.

BarryOthers who dislike Barry refer to him as Hussein, or use his full name, including Hussein, because they want to give the impression that’s he’s a Mohammedan (more on Mohammedans down the line). I don’t think Barry is a Mohammedan, and I am pretty sure he was born in Hawaii.

He’s a lousy president.

2. Collectivists.  These are left-wingers, fans of Barry. Collectivism has its place, mostly when lots of people with ponytails join together to purchase organic foods at cheaper prices. Applying collectivism to government is a colossally bad idea. See Soviet Union, Red China and Cuba.

Those three communist despotisms are collectivism writ large, and you don’t want to even start down that road. Government should be small, not big. A side issue are labor unions which have, at times, a valuable place in this world. But only unions in the private sector. Government unions should be verboten, always.

3. Mohammedans. These are the followers of Mohammed, of course. Call it what you will. Islam. Muslim. I prefer Mohammedans for the same reason I favor Barry. There is a disparagement implied. I am not a fan of Mohammedanism, and you should not be either.

IslamWe are currently engaged in a 21st century religious war, and only one side fully understands — the Mohammedans. If you think otherwise, you are proving my point that only one side fully understands. Barry does not understand. Or collectivists in general. They live in a rainbow fog.

All Mohammedans are not terrorists, you say. That is true, but the vast majority either support the terrorists or are cowed into silence and submission. The “Arab street” exploded in jubilation on 9/11.

* * * *

Those terms are the usual extent of my name-calling. If you want something far nastier, go to Huffpost and leave a conservative comment on a story (any story, pick one), and you will get severe blowback. Collectivists have name-calling down to an everyday art. They simply curse a lot. I long for a kinder world.

Have a nice day.

29 thoughts on “On name-calling”

  1. So, you said: “I use it for only one purpose: to trivialize him. ” That is exactly the purpose of ALL name calling. To trivialize the other person or even to demean them. If you trivialize people that you don’t like just so you won’t have to discuss or consider their ideas; well then, I guess you could be called a “lazy thinker.” So there.

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    1. Don’t hold back, Christine! I can take it. Yes, name-calling is trivializing. However, I contend there are levels of name-calling. Some are far nastier than others. I prefer the lighter phrases. Were there a just Goddess above, I would be able to do more than trivialize Barry with that nickname. I would be able to show him the White House door and boot him out of it.

      I am not a fan. And I do not wish to discuss his ideas, which are quite well known. I do not agree with them. He is a collectivist. But not a Mohammedan.

      Have a nice day!

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    2. By the way, you did a superlative job of strenuously disagreeing with me, putting me in my place, without resorting to name-calling or invective. Seriously. Good job.

      Again, have a nice day.

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  2. Ahh, an appropriate time to remember: The Ant and Grasshopper:

    The ant works hard in the withering heat and the rain all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while he is cold and starving.

    CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, MSNBC and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast and label the ant as the greedy 1%. Chris Matthews asks, How can this be, that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

    Then he says the Republicans caused it and they just want the Grasshopper to die!!!! Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cries when they sing, ‘It’s Not Easy Being Green. ‘Occupy the Anthill stages a demonstration in front of the ant’s house where the above so-called news stations film the Occupy Movement, SEIU and ACORN yelling “No Justice, No Peace” followed by them singing, We shall overcome, Imagine and Kumbaya.

    Then Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Jesse Jackson and Al “Not So” Sharpton have the group kneel down to pray for the grasshopper’s sake, while they condemn the ant and say his selfishness was the result of racism and Income Inequality.

    President Obama condemns the ant and blames President Bush 89, Bush 67, President Reagan, Christopher Columbus, and the Pope, Fox News, ATMs, The Tsunami In Japan, Global Warming, The Tea Party, Big Banks, Private Jet Owners, Wall Street Greed, The Arab Spring, The BP Oil Spill and The Worse Economy Since the Great Depression for the grasshopper’s plight.

    Nancy Pelosi & Harry Reid exclaim in interviews with Bill Maher and Rachel Maddow that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share and then pass a 2700-page bill called GrasshopperCare that no one reads before it becomes law.

    Finally, the EEOC drafts a 4000-page Economic Equity & Anti-Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer that will heavily regulate the ants’ activities.

    The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the Government Green Czar and given to the grasshopper.

    The story ends as we see the grasshopper and his free-loading friends finishing up the last bits of the ant’s food while the government house he is in which, as you recall, just happens to be the ant’s old house, crumbles around them because the grasshopper doesn’t maintain it.

    The ant has disappeared in the snow, never to be seen again. The grasshopper is found dead in a drug-related incident, and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the ramshackle, once prosperous and peaceful, neighborhood.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Jonathan Swift might see this is satire, leechers see it as hope. Collectivists wonder what it means. Meanwhile, the soldier ants should be sharpening their mandibles. Kinda cute parable!

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    1. Jeff I am glad to read your comments. I, too, have a visceral hatred of Collectivists/Democrats/Socialists. I could care less what their beliefs are but what I hate is their desire to impose their will on me. If you feel for the poor then donate and provide charity. I personally have found that people in the US in extreme poverty who have not created their own mess are hard to find. I help them when I can. I resent someone forcing me to give especially when it is only a thinly veiled attempt to buy votes as almost every Democrat program is with a large dollop of corruption thrown in. When the Collectivists get full power people are executed. When we Libertarians take over you will be left alone. Which is the sane view? Ultimately Collectivists are selfish. They only care how they feel and being “concerned” about the poor, global warming, etc makes them feel good. However, personal sacrifice to remedy these hobgoblins are lacking. A pox on their houses. By the way it appears to me that the expatriate community in Mexico is full of left wing kooks. Am I correct?

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  3. Grasshoppers are easy to demonize. Even the Bible refers to them as a plague of locusts. I like most bugs, especially the bees and the butterflies that pollenize the flowers. I like dragonflies that eat mosquitoes that spread disease. I am not fond of houseflies, roaches or scorpions. Bugs are a good source of food for the birds.

    I reserve name-calling for companies like Monsanto who want to poison all bugs and the food we eat.

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  4. This post is pretty self-contradictory. You first say you don’t name-call, and then you proceed to lay out the examples of your name-calling. And as a former professional journalist, you presumably know that it’s bad form to refer to people by names other than the ones they choose to use. So in this case “Barry” is poor form, which reflects badly on you, not him.

    Mohammedan, though not strictly incorrect, is considered archaic and not used by the Muslim community. So it’s a bit of name-calling too. And I’m sure your will agree that no “religious war” will be won by snarky name-calling.

    And referring to anyone to the left of Ayn Rand as a “collectivist” is just flat-out wrong. Here’s a definition of collectivism provided by The American Heritage Dictionary. The principles or system of ownership and control of the means of production and distribution by the people collectively, usually under the supervision of a government. Aside from a very few specialized government agencies like the TVA and its ilk, the Post Office, and the DMV, what means of production are owned and controlled collectively by the people under the supervision of the government? (Publicly-traded companies like Intel don’t count.) What mainstream US politicians are calling for such a form of industry? Certainly not the President. He’s WAY to the right of any elected politician in Europe, and arguably to the right of not-so-distant Republicans like Richard Nixon.

    As for your view on the religious war, I’m actually coming around to it, especially after reading this article: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/28/magazine/theo-padnos-american-journalist-on-being-kidnapped-tortured-and-released-in-syria.html?_r=1

    The question is what do we do? The answer is, sadly, anything but clear.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Boston, MA
    Where we are really sick of name-calling on the internet, though your brand is admittedly very mild.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kim: Take another look at what I wrote:

      “But I never name-call. Again, one man’s meat, as they say, is another man’s poison, so the nomenclature seen regularly here might possibly by considered name-calling by some folks.”

      So I admit that some might take the three examples I cite as name-calling. I put to you that anyone who thinks that about the three examples is bending so far over backward to do so that he is looking through his legs from just below his butt. A tricky maneuver.

      As for being a former professional journalist, I deny that. I was a newspaperman. I have always considered the word journalist as hoity-toity. Anyway, I’m out of the game and can use whatever words I wish to.

      While the U.S. does not have a collectivist government, strictly speaking, I believe (you are free to disagree, of course) that many people find the notion appealing. A goodly proportion of people who vote the NDP these days are in that number. You’d be hard-pressed to find a collectivist in the GOP.

      Again, disagreement is permitted.

      But, more importantly, I simply like the sound of it and enjoy tossing it about with abandon. It satisfies me. That is the beauty of having one’s own website.

      Your contention that Barry is way to the right of any public official in Europe is a notion I disagree with enthusiastically. That he is more conservative than Nixon has sent me into a fit of giggles.

      I am heartened, however, that you are coming around to the fact that we are in the middle of a religious war. That would be, of course, with Mohammedans.

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      1. You know, I live in one of the bluest of the blue states. And I live in the bluest part of that blue state, Boston and Cambridge famously being far more liberal than the rest of Massachusetts, which is still pretty liberal, even in the sticks. (You should hear the people of Western MA complain about us!) But people who fit your distorted image of a leftist, so-called “collectivist” type are rare, even in these parts. I don’t know a single person, even of the most liberal ilk that thinks we should have communism. Regulation and taxation, yes, but not government ownership and control. I think your “collectivists” are a kind of straw-man that you’ve erected so you can knock down the entire Democratic party. It would be like me saying that everyone who is not a Democrat is a fire-breathing, “Teahadist” who wants to dismantle the Federal Reserve, go back to a gold standard, issue a gun to every man, woman, and child in America, and eliminate all regulations of any kind. Sure, there are some of them around, probably more of them than there are of your “leftist collectivists,” but they aren’t really representative of the larger R party.

        By the way, we just elected an R governor, and I support him 100%. I think he will be a fine governor, and if the R party were much more like him, it would be the uncontested majority party in the USA.

        The collectivists that you write about are the ones that make the news, the weird cases, the “man bites dog” stories. They aren’t really the Democratic party.

        And as I pointed out yesterday, the actual policy differences between the Ds and the Rs are small, especially when you cut out the extremes on either side.

        As for the need for a third party, I am 100% with you. We need get America’s house in order, re-set the incentive structure, and put ourselves onto a path of sustainability, fiscally, environmentally, and economically. And make government work for the people, not the corporations and special interests.

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    2. P.S.: You cited a dictionary take on the word collectivism. Here is my far broader definition of collectivist: One who favors government meddling in our lives. I’m agin it, as we say in the Old Confederacy. The operative word is meddling.

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        1. P.S. Grossly defective as the GOP is in governing, though the NDP is worse, it is not the party of political correctness. It is not the party of people who yell racist every time they hear a contrary opinion. It is not the party of people who cancel university speeches (or try to, usually successfully) of people with contrary opinions. It is not the party of “victims” or eternal affirmative action. It is not the party of endlessly being “offended.” This is why the Republicans look so good in comparison. The GOP, like the NDP, governs badly, but at least the people are agreeable company.

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  5. If name calling is over used, it eventually loses its sting. People find it is not so bad to be a racist, sexist or whatever. I recall that when George Smathers ran against his former friend Claude Pepper in the Florida Democratic Primary, he was supposed to have said in speeches in cracker land: “Are you aware that Claude Pepper is known all over Washington as a shameless extrovert? Not only that, but this man is reliably reported to practice nepotism with his sister-in-law, he has a brother who is a known homo sapiens, and he has a sister who was once a thespian in wicked New York. Worst of all, it is an established fact that Mr. Pepper, before his marriage, habitually practiced celibacy.”

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    1. Señor Gill: I have no idea if Smathers actually said that, but I do hope that it is true. It is a wonderful example of how we people of the Old Confederacy have an unequaled skill with the tongue.

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  6. You have referred to me as a collectivist on more than one occasion…which by your definition nothing could be further from the truth…I am for far less government interference in our lives…always have been always will be. I am in agreement with Kim, the GOP fits your definition far better than it does the NDP. I dislike labels of any kind…what’s the point? I am a registered independent so that I may vote for what the candidate represents…regardless of party affiliation.

    All for now…que tengas un buen fin…

    P.S. I see Ms. Bonnie has not resurfaced…thankfully. Perhaps she is sitting patiently in her double La-Z-Boy awaiting the rapture…

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    1. Charles: You are a Barry fan, so that makes you a collectivist using my very broad definition. Perhaps you are, like so many others, trying to distance yourself from him now, but I remember…

      Don’t be embarrassed. Embrace your philosophy with pride. I forgive you because I like you.

      As for “disliking labels,” how would one tell the mustard from the ketchup?

      As for your being an Independent, I would wager that there is no way on God’s green earth that you would vote for a Republican, so … you’re a Democrat.

      I recently left a comment on Facebook, the page of a Democrat voter whom I know, and a raving leftist responded with spittle and vitriol, which is not rare. During his venom-filled outburst, he insisted he was not a Liberal, not a Democrat, but an … Independent. It was really funny. He was a classic Leftist, potty mouth and all.

      Yes, Bonnie wisely opted out of the discussion in question, knowing that arguing politics and religion never convinces anyone of anything.

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      1. Nope…not trying to distance myself at all…I think Obama has accomplished quite a bit in spite of very great odds. The last Republican I voted for was Ronald Reagan…something I will rue until the day I die…hasn’t happened since and is unlikely to happen again.

        I would vote for Bernie Sanders in a heartbeat…he is an independent and speaks the truth…but my ever getting that chance is more than remote.

        Enjoy your beach getaway…

        The difference between mustard and ketchup? The color and shape of the bottle…no labels necessary…

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        1. Charles: From Ronnie Reagan to Bernie Sanders. Well, there’s a switcheroo for you.

          If Sanders is an “Independent,” it’s only because Barry’s NDP is too conservative for him.

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  7. Wesmouch…social justice does not exist anywhere in the world…never has never will…it must come from the conscience…it certainly cannot be legislated…I do however help others who have not been as fortunate as myself…but it is done on a one-to-one basis and how I choose to do it is not really anyone else’s business…I certainly would never trust the government to make those choices for me…they do more than enough of that as it is…and finally, the world would certainly be a much gentler place without folks making sarcastic judgments of others whom they don’t even know…

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    1. Per Saul Alinksy, Hillary amd Obama’s mentor: “ridicule is your most potent weapon”. Sarcasm falls short but is a step there.

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