From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor's rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own. Carl Schurz

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Terminology Matters

There is a saying “Tell me how you’ll measure me and I’ll tell you how I’ll behave”

If so then we shouldn’t be surprised when political operatives working out of an office called the “War Room” engage in warlike tactics

I much prefer this type of terminology


  1. While I take your point, I'd say a party with a "peace room" is one that would very often be employing the terminology "we lost".
    There have to be alternatives somewhere between, or off to the side from, those two extremes.

  2. C'mon PLG, I'm trying real hard to overcome my cynicism and you're not helping with all this realism stuff. But yeah there would need to be something that finds a balance between those two extremes.

  3. I like war metaphors. I use them for doing battle against hatred, bigotry, and oppression of all kind.

    I've been in battles to keep abortion clinics open and to keep war resisters safe in Canada. I am ready to fight, ready to captain or to be a good captain's lieutenant, ready to sharpen every weapon in my arsenal, to take the enemy's position and explore strategies.

    I'd also vote for the party with a peace room. :)

  4. Hi Laura, I have no issue with war metaphors,particularly in the contexts you highlighted. My issue is with the notion of politics as war,it makes for a terrible system for choosing ones government

  5. I agree with you there. It makes getting elected and the campaign itself the most important thing. Win at any cost - and we see where that gets us.

    In activism, using war metaphors bothers some lefty activists. I'm told we shouldn't see the world in terms of us vs them, we should look for common ground, communicate with people who disagree with us... blah blah blah.

    That's true in some circumstances, but when people are trying to strip women of basic human rights, or trying to jail people for not going to war - or people are creating war and poverty - as far as I'm concerned, they are the enemy!