Tuesday, March 13, 2012

An Essay on Convoluted Political Acronyms & Euphemisms

Have you grown tired of convoluted political euphemisms? You know, when politicians use some soothing, benign acronym or carefully-grouped, innocuous bunch of words or phrases to convince you that something they want to impose upon you is good, and good for you? Something that might literally mean that up is down and black is white?

Examples of such double-speak may not come readily to mind. That's because we're so inured to them that we tend not to notice. This reality was writ large by Harvard Business School a few years back. Their H. B. Review reported that we are each subjected to an average of more than 1,600 advertisements of one kind or another every single day! Billboards, TV and radio commercials, magazines, newspapers, leaflets, door hangers, Internet ads, skywriting, etc., all bombard us with an assault of impressions all designed to get us to buy something or do something, and NOW! Political euphemisms are no different. Except that they are attempting to make chicken s**t look like chicken salad. And, sad to say, they're usually successful. Want some examples? I thought you would…

Card Check (Paycheck Protection Act): Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and then-Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi, each deep in the pockets of the unions that put them in power, and donate big to keep them there, tried valiantly to pass what they euphemistically called "Card Check" awhile back. That was during the period that they, along with B. Hussein Obama, were in complete control of the Presidency, the House and the Senate. We can all thank our lucky stars they were unsuccessful. For had they been, America would now be owned lock, stock and barrel by the unions. Often called the "Paycheck Protection Act," another euphemism, Card Check would have enabled beefy Chicago thugs with suspicious bulges under their ill-fitting, off-the-rack J. C. Penney suit jackets to knock on your middle-class door and demand that you sign a card right then and vote for the forced unionization of your workplace. No secret ballot. Nooooooo! Just out-in-the-open, full-blown threats and coercion, leveled against you during a period of as little as eleven days following the announcement that a union had put your employer in its gunsights. This would leave no time for the boss to mount a defense. Just unfettered union muscle forcing you to vote, while they watch and with the full knowledge and awareness of your co-workers as to just how you voted. And all of this was given full-throated support by the National Labor Relations Board, that fun-loving group of union-loving weenies appointed by the Community Organizer-in-chief.

So what paycheck protection did this piece of crap offer? Ummm, none. So what did card check mean? A goon stuffs a card under your nose and tells you to check the box. And you do.

When asked why it was okay for Americans to display their preferences for political candidates at polling places in secret, as has been the case since the beginning of our Republic, but not when deciding whether or not to unionize, the feckless leaders of the House and the Senate answered by stating that members of their august bodies voted in public, for all to see, so what's the problem? What, indeed?

Affirmative Action: "Affirmative" means to indicate a positive, or confirmatory, or favorable, answer to a question. Basically, it means "yes." And "action" means to act, to do something. So, affirmative action means to positively act. So how, I ask, did this term come to mean giving preference to minorities in college admissions? Or in securing mortgages? Or in being selected for a job? How, indeed?

There's no question that certain minorities have suffered discrimination down through the years. But LBJ and the Democrats decided back in the early 1960's to do something about it. With complete control of the Presidency and both house of Congress, they rewrote laws and regulations in a way that gave these "downtrodden" groups preferences over the majority whites in all manner of areas. And then put the full power of the public Treasury behind that quest, spending untold trillions over the intervening years to force such change. That's how Blacks with substandard SAT scores and poor high school GPA's were moved to the head of the line by colleges and universities when selecting new admissions. Their doing so resulted in many smart kids without their choice of schools, or the chance to go to college at all, simply because they were white. Sort of reverse racism, no?

Now, some 40 years later, the Supreme Court has agreed to hear a suit by a white Texas kid who was denied admission because he was white and a Black kid with crappy scores and grades was accepted in his place. They will hopefully decide that selection criteria on the basis of race should never again be employed. Until then, I suggest we change this term to "Negative Action," as "no" is really the answer being given to people of the wrong skin tone.

Earned Income Tax Credit: This is a really convoluted little euphemism. If you don't earn enough money in America to pay income taxes, you'll get a rebate, and it's called an "Earned Income Tax Credit." So, you get a "rebate" for not having paid income taxes. Doesn't rebate mean you get some back from what you paid? Don't you have to pay something first? Apparently not if you do business with Democrats who just LOVE to buy votes anyway they can. And, with other peoples' money.

Prevailing Wage: "Prevailing" means usual, predominant, normal or prevalent. "Wage" means salary, income, earnings or take home pay. So, dear reader, prevailing wage means normal earnings. Got it?

Not to the unions, it doesn't. Prevailing wage is what unions call what they require their members to be paid to do a particular job. And, because unions collect massive amounts of dues, and because they then give those dues to politicians and sycophants to vote in a way they find favorable, they've decided that governments, whether Federal, state, county or city, should pay those they employ to perform public works projects then-current prevailing wages. And, of late, 95% of the time the donations go to Democrats. Plus, those governments wind up having to employ union labor to do the jobs they need done, ruling out private businesses whose employees aren't unionized from even bidding. And, since union labor costs at least 20% more than private labor, governments wind up paying a fat premium for every job performed. The term "prevailing wage" should therefore be changed to read, "Union-Dictated Wage." Maybe then we would know just how much it costs to allow union bosses to put their hands in taxpayers' pockets, and keep them there.

Don't agree? Take a long, hard look at Detroit. From the shining city on the hill back in the 'fifties to a failed, bankrupt, unmitigated disaster today. Oh, and by the way, Detroit has had nothing but Democrat mayors and city council members for the past sixty years.

Undocumented Worker: This is the politically correct term the NFM (non-Fox media) has given to people from another country that have broken into America without permission. These are the folks who sneaked in and began to enjoy the American dream without having first earned the privilege. They usually work for cash, or, if paid by check, they must first steal somebody else's Social Security number. They pay no income taxes, but participate in manifold county, state and Federal programs. These would include food stamps, rent payment assistance, AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children), another acronym, free education and two and sometimes three meals a day for their (probably) American citizen kids. The Lefties want to give them citizenship. Many of those on the Right want them deported and forced to apply for (re)entry just like everyone else. They should not be allowed to go to the head of the line, conservatives think. Funny. Isn't that kind of like Affirmative Action?

Here's what I think: If these people are Undocumented Workers, then drug dealers are Unlicensed Pharmacists

No Child Left Behind: Teddy "The Driver" Kennedy (now no doubt sending long distance emails to Mary Jo Kopeckne, begging her forgiveness), in cahoots with George W. Bush, came up with this little program more than a decade ago. Using their view from Foggy Bottom, they decided that one-size-fits-all as regards public education. They decided that instead of teaching the Three R's, students should be taught to pass tests. And if they didn't, the thinking went, then the school would fall out of compliance and potentially be taken over by the bureaucrats from D.C. They weren't smart enough to have learned about the Law of Unintended Consequences. Or, that No Good Deed Goes Unpunished. Apparently Teddy and George and the dummies that voted for this piece of social engineering were not aware that there are pockets of humanity in the U. S. of A. containing people who don't speak English. Imagine! One such pocket would be in Southern California, that little Workers' Paradise where a third of the population call Mexico home. And where more than 200 different and distinct languages from around the globe are spoken each and every day. They're just here to work hard and stay under the radar and get their kids educated for free and to send vast sums of money back home via remittances each month to Cuernavaca and Tijuana and other points south. The Net Result is that you can't teach kids in English who don't speak English. Duh! You have to first teach them to speak our language. So the whole deal falls apart. Testing scores lag, schools fail, Federal money is withheld. Chaos. It's just my opinion, but I think it's time to leave No Child Left Behind…Behind. And, oh by the way, shut down the U.S. Department of Education while we're at it. They chew up massive amounts of taxpayer dollars and return bupkus to those of us out here in the boonies that pay their salaries.

SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: Talk about political correctness run amok! We used to call this the Food Stamp Program. But that was deemed to be demeaning to the recipients. We can't permit them to feel badly about themselves, can we? Just because they're supping at the public trough, we can't look down our liberal noses at this group of folks. So, some Libs came up with the cute little acronym, SNAP. Who could be against a program with a cute little name like that? Of course, in the process of legitimizing food stamps, the program has grown by more than 33% since the Mr. Hopeychangey was inaugurated, to now more than 49.7 million people! Did you hear about the New England woman who won $1,000,000 in a scratcher? She was still collecting $200 a month in food stamps a year after having won this stunning amount of money. Why don't we just give everybody SNAP so we no longer have to try and police recipients to make sure they really deserve to participate? Rep. Nancy Pelosi (aka San Fran Nan), who has already opined that unemployment payments create jobs (!), would no doubt consider such an expanded program another job creator. Ahhh. The salt air in the City by the Bay must kill brain cells all the time it's sharpening appetites. Of course, that would necessarily apply to Seattle, Portland, Santa Cruz, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and San Diego…

And finally, let's take a look at Global Warming (Climate Change/Climate Disruption/Climate Chaos, etc., etc., blah, blah, blah…). Okay, kids, let's take a look at what we know. The Earth hasn't warmed appreciably in the last dozen years or so. But the Earth has warmed and cooled and warmed and cooled many, many times over the last three billion years or so. And it's done so without the contribution of mankind. The Little Ice Age, which occurred about 10,000 years ago, complete with Mastodons and Sabre Tooth Tigers, came and went without the help of SUVs. Yet, the squishy types want us to believe that carbon dioxide, that trace gas comprising less than one percent of our atmosphere, the same trace gas that we exhale and plants breathe, is responsible for the Earth getting all warmey and potentially uninhabitable. It's becoming so bad, they tell us, that we have to stop using light bulbs that we make and start using those that the Chinese manufacture. Bulbs that, if we drop them, we have to call the HazMat team to rescue us. And they tell us we have to drive little weenie electric cars that cost twice or three times as much as gas powered vehicles. Cars that derive their power from electricity we must produce from coal, arguably the dirtiest of all power sources. Absolute insanity.

This whole climate thing is a non-problem created by those educated beyond their intellect who want grants to study it, paid for by taxpayers whose lives are being turned upside down as a result. It is dangerous, ridiculous, foolish and wasteful, and those who choose to believe that we mere humans can change the seasons based on how we light our homes and what kind of vehicles we drive need to seek some professional help. Enough said.

Seek out and make note of the acronyms and euphemisms you see in your daily lives. And maybe make a note of whom to vote for or against as a result…

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