Friday 22 April 2022

Euphemisms in Quotes: Arguments and Simpler Times

So much simpler...

The classic political defence is to say "This is a politically motivated attack", to characterise criticism as coming from sore losers, spiteful opponents, rent-a-mob and so forth. Followed naturally by wanting to "move on", "draw a line under it" and other euphemisms for blocking any further embarrassment.

Let's agree to disagree: I've lost this argument, I know I've lost this argument and you know that I have lost this argument, but I am far too proud to admit this." (@jpwarchaeology)

It is not true that Stonewall looks to shut down debate. Meaningful, constructive debate and discussion around complex policy ideas are at the heart of what we do as a charity. (Stonewall. Translation: You don't disagree with us.)

I prefer a more nuanced, balanced and intelligent examination of history, which of course would preclude any "trashing". (GH. We were talking about “honouring our country’s Golden Age” – the Empire – or not. He wanted to preclude any criticism from the word go.)

Time to contribute constructively and not oppose for the sake of opposition. (@erskine0812)

Subtle and nuanced: bloviating, hand-waving, sophistical equivocation, verbal prestidigitation of the kind Shakespeare sent up. (Alex von Tunzelmann on Judith Butler)

What century are we living in when a reader writes to a newspaper claiming that "some women are using masculine behaviour to aggressively promote their agenda in an uncompromising way"? (@lnmackenzie1. Translation: “They’re disagreeing with me!”)

I suspect getting called TERF is all for the same reason: "We don't have any counterarguments, so just give excuses to avoid having to provide any evidence at all." (@JamesCantorPhD)

A mansplainer who I called out for mansplaining feminism advised me to be more polite. I think this means "don't be critical at all".

Does anyone else wish for simpler times? I feel life was better without social media & internet. (@Nursemecj. The following thread defines “simpler times” as “without all this technology”. Searching Twitter for “simpler times” reveals that for many people it just means “I was younger then”.)

It was a different, simpler, nicer age. (MB)

Like cups of Ovaltine, tram tickets and suspender belts, an echo of a simpler time. (Simon Brett, A Comedian Dies. Oyster cards and tights are simpler than a conductor selling paper tickets, or suspenders and stockings.)

It was kind of like the last decade before social media, cell phones, internet. Throw in the pandemic, and I'm not surprised people are yearning for times that didn't seem as complicated. (Via FB)

Were simpler times when pikelets cost 2c? (

Dating more than one person at once is a remnant of a mating mechanism from a period when people didn't live very long, and a man had sex with lots of women to make sure his lineage continued. Sigh, simpler times. ( Sounds a lot more complex than having just the one wife.)

Happy days back then. Life was so much simpler. I seem to remember how the whole family sat down together and laughed at the comedies on the tele, especially on Saturday nights. No one seems to be able to do comedy nowadays without effing and blinding. I know what I find more genuinely funny. (On Benny Hill’s skeleton strip.)

Jan. 9, 1913: We like to think that the past was a kinder, simpler time — when life moved at a slower pace. But no. The LA Times publishes a Page 1 news map “as an aid to the busy reader helping him to devour a body of news many columns in length.” In the map, we find: 1. Troops arriving at the front 2. Ship in distress 3. Burning building 4. Land battle 5. Earthquake 6. Execution 7. Volcano eruption 8. Forest fire 9. Assassination-massacre 10. Street riot 11. Let slip the dogs of war 12. Burglary and robbery 13 More snow 14. Pestilence and starvation 15. Sea fight 16. Railroad accident 17. Fatal automobile accident 18. Aeroplane accident (Larry Harnisch,

More here and links to the rest.

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