Saturday, January 16, 2016


"Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed will be expressed by exactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten… The process will still be continuing long after you and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer words and the range of consciousness always a little smaller. Even now, of course, there's no reason or excuse for committing thoughtcrime. It's merely a question of self-discipline, reality-control. But in the end there won't be any need even for that… Has it ever occurred to you, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?"


~ George Orwell

I cannot help but think of the above exchange when I watch, read, or listen to the "news" coverage of the Republican debates and the Republican candidates’ events. What else can it be but Newspeak when the candidates say things like "we have to protect the constitution" and in the same speech they propose ideas like introducing religious tests on immigration – something that is expressly forbidden by the first amendment!?
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

   Amendment #1

~ Constitution Of The United States Of America

And what else can we consider it but Newspeak when the Right waxes poetically about protecting our democracy while systematically disenfranchising huge swaths of the population because people of their socio-economic demographic tend to vote for the other party!? 
The Supreme Court may believe that we have reached racial equality and that institutional racism is a thing of the past, but Voter Suppression laws live on. 
Not to mention the fact that our "representatives" repeatedly fail to represent the views of their constituency. No matter how popular a position may be in the citizenry, if there is not a major interest group willing to lobby for it – potentially withholding their support (read that "money") from candidates who fail to fervently fight for their goals instead of ours!
Repeatedly polls show that a vast majority of Americans support reasonable limitations on the processes of selling guns, like, say checking the background of people trying to buy guns.
Please! Commit the thoughtcrime of thinking for yourself! Help stomp-out Newspeak; call "B_llsh_t" when any candidate makes sounds that would (taken at face value) mean one thing but in reality actually have some very different effect. 

"I want to protect human lives" should not mean "I want to systematically deny millions of poor women healthcare in a meaningless nod to the radical religious right." 

"Let’s make our country great again" should not mean "let’s pander to the basest most racist and xenophobic minority of the population."

Wherever you are today, I implore you to listen to what the candidate is meaning and not what the candidate is saying. To paraphrase the Bard of Avon: "B_llsh_t by any other name would still smell!"

Don Bergquist – January 16, 2016 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

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