When explosive devices were sent to people Donald Trump routinely targets at his rallies, the response from right-wing media was painfully predictable. We all expected the response to be something akin to the now cliche claim of false flag. Thus, none of us were surprised when Alex Jones said as much. And it really shouldn’t have shocked anyone when … Read more
October 28, 2018
Rhetorical Bolt-holes and Rhetorical Bolts
Once again the man who got elected US President shows his incapacity to empathize with victims of violence or to sympathize with the survivors. Yesterday he suggested to reporters that the solution to incidents such as the mass-shooting inside the Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue was for the Jews to arm themselves. … Read more
Here is a relevant tweet. I have written to ask Jamil Smith if we can embed but he has a huge audience and so may not write back. I have posted this and another tweet at the Rhetoricians for Peace Facebook page.
Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith)
10/21/18, 5:10 PM
Words matter. Is it @AP style to call migrants an “army”—above … Read more
Among the many layers of the multi-valanced meanings of the word “nationalism” used recently by Donald Trump during a campaign rally in support of Ted Cruz (R-Texas), one that emerges without much scrutiny has been its opposition to “globalists.” A globalist, Trump declared, “is a person who wants the globe to do well, frankly, not caring about our country so … Read more
This story is more than a month old, but the doublespoken-ness of it didn’t really register for me until just the other day.
As a State Senator, Mark Green (R-TN) voted against Tennessee’s expansion of the Medicaid program; he still resists the idea. Currently running for the US Congress, Senator Green made the comment below (click anywhere on the photo … Read more
Jamal Khashoggi is dead. The journalist was murdered on October 2 at the Saudi consulate in Turkey. The available evidence suggests with increasing certainty that it was plotted and carried out by members of Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman’s coterie of advisors and confidantes. The scandal over Khashoggi’s murder has only grown over the past two weeks, with new … Read more
In 2015, the US State Department signed a deal to sell Saudi Arabia 532 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles, 48 Harpoon Block II Missiles, and 188 Block II Rolling Airframe Missiles. By law the agreement had to be approved by Congress. Facilitating such approval is the function of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, an arm of the Department of Defense. So … Read more
Last Friday, members of the alt-right group the Proud Boys violently attacked a number of innocent people in New York City. This group is one of a number of groups that are united by some combination of white nationalism, misogyny, and other prejudicial ideologies—with some prejudices outranking others for some young men. Young men are drawn to … Read more
RHETORICAL AXES TO GRIND
October 17, 2018
By “axes” I mean axis in the plural.
Major public controversies are framed by ideological axes, always more than one. Take the controversy over climate change. So far the public debate has been polarized. Knowingly or not, people position themselves at one or the other end of rhetorical axes, perhaps the axis of … Read more
October 16, 2018
WELCOME TO THE MINISTRY OF TRUTH
My local newspaper has a reader-comment feature now run by some national corporation called The World Table. It monitors comments and bestows a running “score” on all commenters.
I just posted a message using a word that the current President of the United States was recorded saying. It’s a … Read more