Blog Post

Freedom of the Press:  A Precious and Precarious Right

It’s in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Children in the US learn about it in school. If you grew up in the States, you’ve probably taken freedom of the press for granted your whole life. Can we afford to do that now?

Current State of Press Freedom

Billions of people around the world live under regimes that … Read more

Blog Post

Telling it like it ISN’T: A Strict Father Privilege

You may have noticed that factuality, consistency, and logic matter little to certain politicians and their followers. What is happening? Here I offer one useful concept for understanding this triumph of illogic.

This concept is “framing,” and particularly the “strict father” frame, as put forth by cognitive linguist George Lakoff, most succinctly in his book Don’t Think of an ElephantRead more

Blog Post

On the Origins of the Term “Doublespeak”

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the term “double-tongued,” defined as “duplicity or deceitfulness of speech” dates at least as far back as the 1300s, appearing in the works of Chaucer.  Today, the related term “Doublespeak” is most commonly associated with George Orwell.  Doublespeak is a blend of two terms from George Orwell’s dystopian novel, 1984: newspeak Read more