Tuesday, August 8, 2006

Vidal on language

James Wolcott quotes the incomparable Gore Vidal: "'A current pejorative adjective is narcissistic. Generally, a narcissist is anyone better looking than you are, but lately the adjective is often applied to those 'liberals' who prefer to improve the lives of others rather than exploit them. Apparently, a concern for others is self-love at its least attractive, while greed is now a sign of the highest altruism. But then to reverse, periodically, the meanings of words is a very small price to pay for our vast freedom not only to conform but to consume.'"

One of these days, I hope to write some insightful piece about how damaging to the truth is engaging in "debate" with these right-wing thugs. Till then, I will treasure the words of better men than I.

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