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political speech

2004-11-19 16:24:53.555977+00 by Dan Lyke 5 comments

On my way to the ferry this morning I was listening to NPR and it got me wondering: After so many years of ridicule, especially by the right wing elements of our culture, why is political correctness coming back in? Specifically, when did "muslim" become "islamist", "fundamentalist Christian" become "evangelical", and "rebel" become "insurgent"?

[ related topics: Religion Politics moron Sociology Pop Culture ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2004-11-19 17:22:07.797655+00 by: jeff

Dan--this is mostly about "framing issues" in a way that the power elite in this country want them discussed. Just like the "war on poverty," the "war on drugs," and the "war on terror" have all been "framed" and "pushed" into our lexicon by the ruling media. Nazi Germany also did that extremely well.

Here are two very important articles for reading:

How Do You Know You Are Being Spun? http://www.couplescompany.com/...tics/PropagandaEssay/default.htm

Single Control Of All Satellite Programming? http://www.nationalvanguard.org/story.php?id=1039

By the way, a friend of mine says he can no longer get the European version of the BBC on his satellite feed. Has Rupert Murdoch effectively cut off America from the rest of the world? Does he only want "Americans" to get the satellite content that only "he authorizes?" In a word? Scary.

#Comment Re: made: 2004-11-19 19:45:35.80811+00 by: petronius [edit history]

Maybe beacuse those terms you mentioned are in fact describing different things.

There are about 1 billion muslims of many different traditions and cultural backgrounds, some very conservative and some rather liberal. "Islamists" are usually considered to be extremely conservative elements who will use any means to convert the state into a society reflecting their particular interpretation.

Evangelicals are Christians who have had an intense, personal experience of a divine presence, and who have in consequence made a concious decision to live their entire life in a way more in keeping with their interpretation of what that divine presence wishes. While this may tend them towards a personal conservativism (i.e., no sex outside marriage, intense daily devotion, a non-extravagent lifestyle, a discomfort with popular media, opposition to Abortion), it does not necessarily mean political conservativism. I would give you the left-wing Catholic Worker movement as one example. Fundementalists, on the other hand, are all of the above, but with a very strict, literal interpretaion of the Bible, which leads them to Creationism, for example. They are a but a subset of the evangelical movement. A very noisy one, but no more the definition of the movement than the Stalinists at ANSWER define the anit-war movement.

#Comment Re: made: 2004-11-19 21:11:10.946669+00 by: Dan Lyke

I can buy your definition of "muslim" versus "islamist", at least in the current usage, although I think that "islamist" is mostly "muslims we're not supposed to like", but by your definitions of "evangelical" versus "fundamentalist", most uses I've run into in the past month or so are exactly backwards, and it's this that bothers me.

Just like the usage of "insurgent" to describe a force that by all accounts is 90% native.

#Comment Re: made: 2004-11-23 07:06:06.277425+00 by: Pete

When you hear "Islamist," think "racist" or "sexist." That's the usage parallel. It has to do with the how the described person uses religion in general and Islam in particular to form strong judgements about the worth of a person.

#Comment Re: made: 2004-11-24 00:36:53.974019+00 by: jeff

You can learn much more about these terms (muslim, zionist, islamist) in the context of what is actually happening in the Middle-East through this recently released book (read the customer reviews; they are very insightful):

Imperial Hubris http://www.amazon.com/exec/obi...warbookstore/103-8688033-9344605

There is also a very insightful review of the book at:


Or simply do a google search on "michael scheuer" and point your browser to any interesting entries. Although I don't necessarily agree with his solutions, his analysis of "what is happening" and what the "US is doing wrong" in the Middle-East is brilliant and absolutely spot on.