»  National Review

September 29th, 2003

  From "Activist" to "Warmonger"


Back in 1911 the American misanthrope and satirist Ambrose Bierce published his Devil's Dictionary, 140 pages of scathing commentary on the folly, ugliness and cruelty of the human race, laid out in the form of a dictionary, with "definitions" along the lines of (to give an actual sample): "Erudition, n. — Dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull."

Without in any way wishing to endorse Bierce's low opinion of his fellow men, I offer the following brief Devil's Dictionary of terms current in the media today. Alongside each entry I have given the least charitable possible interpretation of the word or phrase listed. (NB: To save space and avoid unnecessary repetition, I have used an abbreviation — "DVG," which stands for "designated victim group," e.g. black people, homosexuals, illegal immigrants, etc.)

activist, n. Leftist trouble-maker.

affirmative action, n.  Quotas by race, sex, and often sexual orientation (though never by religion or political inclination).

Arab street, the, n.  The cab driver who took your correspondent from Amman airport to the Hilton Hotel.

bash, v.t.  To make uncomplimentary remarks about a DVG. To suggest that some particular member of a DVG has moral failings. E.g. "immigrant-bashing" — opposing illegal immigration.

bigotry, n.  The open expression of conservative opinions.

celebrate, v.t.  (In such bound forms as "celebrate diversity.") To feign whole-hearted enthusiasm for some theory, doctrine, law, ruling, or administrative fait accompli that strips you of some of your rights or property and awards them to a DVG.

censorship, n.  A refusal, on the part of the public authorities, to disburse public monies to performance artists (q.v.), transgressive artists (q.v.), and so on.

centrist, adj.  Liberal. See also mainstream, moderate.

children, for the sake of our, n.  Teachers' unions, for the sake of the.

choice, n.  The killing of human fetuses in utero, or the removal by suction of the brain of a new-born baby.

civil rights, n.  The privileges to which DVGs are entitled.

Communist, n.  A person who adheres to the economic and political theories of Karl Marx and V.I. Lenin. No member of the U.S. media knows any such person, nor ever has. Probably no such person ever existed. If such a person did exist, he or she was undoubtedly full of good intentions, though perhaps mistaken as to methods.

controversial, adj.  (Applied to a nominee for any cabinet or judicial position requiring congressional approval.)  Conservative.

deficit, n.  An imbalance in state or national finances brought about by the willful refusal of the executive branch to support the ever-increasing levels of taxation required to fund the disbursements required by Congress (q.v.).

discrimination, n.  Formerly known as "freedom of association."

diverse, adj.  (Applied to a collectivity of persons.)  Containing persons of all possible skin colors, sexes, sexual preferences and immigration statuses, but preferably of identically mainstream (q.v.) opinions.

drastic cuts in government services, n.  Reductions in the rate of growth of the rate of growth of the public sector's rate of growth.

education, n.  The activity engaged in by members of teacher unions, in the brief intervals between political lobbying, skills-enhancement sabbaticals, etc.

Episcopal Church of the U.S.A., n.  A dating service for homosexuals, funded mainly by revenues from ownership of real estate in New York City.

gun lobbies, n.  People opposed to the idea that the only armed civilians should be bank robbers.

hate speech, n.  Words that are offensive to some powerful interest group, or to self-designated representatives of a DVG.

inappropriate, adj.  True, but unmentionable for political reasons.

inclusive, adj.  Firm in the belief that no two people ought ever be treated differently by anyone at all in any context at all. Opposite of divisive (q.v.).

International Criminal Court, n.  A gathering of European and Third World left-wing jurists, committed to bringing to trial and punishing Henry Kissinger for the crime of having helped thwart a communist coup in Chile, thereby depriving the Chilean people of universal free health care and 100 percent literacy (q.v.).

judiciary, n.  A body of citizens charged with making those laws that Congress has omitted to make.

law school, n.  An institution for the inculcation of politically-correct ideas in young adults; a place where the process of extracting new rights and benefits from the Constitution is taught; the natural and proper aspiration for all young persons.

legislature, n.  An institution whose purpose is to identify the few dozen noisiest, wealthiest, or most troublesome of many thousand factions in a state, or in the nation, and disburse public monies to them. In the event that a faction so identified is already a recipient of public monies, the legislature must ensure that the amount disbursed increases each year.

living wage, n.  The latest wage demand by some public-sector labor union.

mainstream, adj.  (Applied to a person's opinions.)  Liberal. See also centrist, moderate.

marriage, n.  An archaic institution for the oppression of women and the abuse of children, from participation in which homosexual couples are cruelly and unjustly barred.

mean-spirited, adj.  Insufficiently deferential to, or failing to acknowledge the inherent moral superiority of, some DVG.

media, n.  A program of indoor relief for unemployable intellectuals.

military, n.  A branch of the social-welfare services designated to work overseas at improving the lives of foreigners.

moderate, adj.  Liberal. See also centrist, mainstream.

multiculturalism, n.  The doctrine that persons of European ancestry are morally inferior to all other human beings.

nativist, n.  A person who believes that citizens should have rights in law that are not available to foreigners, or that illegal immigration is illegal.

no child left behind, (slogan)  No U.S. citizen should do manual work. Everyone should go to law school.

no justice, no peace! (slogan)  Give us money or we'll riot!

non-violent offenders, n.  Thieves, burglars and junkies.

Ozzie and Harriet, n.  Representatives of the false consciousness prevalent in the United States prior to the liberating movements of the 1960s. A married couple with no powers of imagination or self-awareness, trapped in such delusions as that unblemished domesticity is a satisfactory lifestyle, or that child-raising is best conducted with minimal state interference.

partner, n.  Husband, wife, lover, mistress, catamite, or "participating" pet.

peace, n.  Appeasement of dictators or terrorists.

peace process, n.  The handing over of a liberal, constitutional order to terrorists and gangsters, conducted so slowly that outsiders lose all interest.

performance art, n.  Gross exhibitionism, usually of an obscene nature.

poetry, n.  A form of writing, in which the random thoughts of a self-obsessed person are arranged on a page in such a way that they cannot be mistaken for prose.

poverty, n.  The condition of being neither middle-class nor rich. Thirty million Americans are always "living in poverty," regardless of the state of the national economy, improvements in the provision of public services, or any other changes in the life of the nation. This thirty million is a physical constant, like the speed of light.

public investment, n.  Kiss your tax dollars goodbye.

questioning, adj.  (As in "gay, lesbian, transgendered and questioning youth.")  Thought to be a good prospect for seduction by adult homosexuals.

race, n.  A social construct, devised by persons of the European social construct in order to justify their oppression and exploitation of persons of African, Asian, and American aboriginal social constructs.

racism, n.  An appalling type of moral delinquency, of such unspeakable turpitude that its actual definition defies linguistic expression. An essential, ineradicable and irredeemable component of the personality of every person of European ancestry.

Religious Right, n.  Persons who believe that the Bible is divinely inspired.

renewable energy sources, n.  300-ft-high windmills costing $12 million apiece, each generating sufficient power to operate a small domestic refrigerator.

reparations, n.  Monies proposed to be paid to the descendants of black slaves by the descendants of white serfs and yellow coolies.

road map to peace, n.  See peace process.

simplistic, adj.  Predicated on the belief, or apparent belief, that good and evil differ from each other in some fashion.

self-esteem, n.  The mental state formerly known as "the sin of pride."

social change, n.  Higher taxes to sustain more government employees.

social justice, n.  See social change.

socially aware, adj.  Cringing before the overwhelming moral superiority of DVGs.

spew, spout, v.t.  To speak in a way that is inappropriate (q.v.) A style of speech favored by bigots (q.v.).

sustainable development, n.  A style of national economic management favored by persons who wear sandals over socks.

tax cut for the rich, n.  Tax cut.

transgressive, adj.  Obscene, usually with a homosexual content.

troubled, adj.  Pretending, for political purposes, to be in a state of high-minded indignation. E.g. "Opponents of Justice [Priscilla] Owen are rightly troubled by her extremely conservative record as a Texas state court judge." (New York Times).

undocumented immigrant, n.  A person whose first act on entering the United States is to violate our laws. Mildly offensive. Preferred terms: "day laborer,"  "immigrant."

universal free health care and 100 percent literacy, n.  The principal features of life in Cuba, but nowhere else.

urban youth, n.  Street punks.

warmonger, n.  A person who wishes ill to his country's enemies.