The Spectacle Blog

Annoying Phrases, Pt 4

By on 7.18.06 | 3:20PM

Well, don't anyone say I only take those who flatter me. From Bob Keiser:

You aren't going to like this one Mr. H.!

Let's start calling the "death tax" what it really is. It's an INHERITANCE TAX dammit!

It causes problems, mainly to people who inherit small businesses and farms, and are forced to sell them to pay the tax, but this can be resolved simply enough by exempting the first $25,000,000.00 or so from any tax and taxing the balance left over.

Hell, you can make a case for taxing 100% of a survivors inheritance! Consider, for instance, Pinch Sulzberger.

No, I do not like it. And I could say what I think is wrong with it, but I'll let you folks do that in the comments section.

Annoying Phrases, Pt 3

By on 7.18.06 | 2:37PM

Here's another from Jay Molyneaux:

My pet deceptive phrase in Mrs. Clinton's oft spoken of "vast right wing conspiracy." Given that a conspiracy is a secret undertaking by a small, secretive group of people to accomplish some unlawful act, it would follow then that vastness would not be a component. It must then be also true that there be an unlawful end which is the reason for the conspiracy. What unlawful acts has Mrs. Clinton pointed out as the subject of this nefarious group of fanatics? Perhaps bring to public attention her husband's serial adultery? Making known his alleged assaults on women? Or is the phrase just another attempt by a totalitarian socialist to obscure and avoid discourse on facts? Methinks the latter.

Kelley Dupuis sounded a similar note:

How about "vast, right-wing conspiracy?" It isn't just misleading and inaccurate, it's a LIE!!!! (I'm still trying to figure out how Hillary Clinton got away with saying this on television and going completely unchallenged.)

So am I.

‘Get Whitey’ Laws?

By on 7.18.06 | 12:40PM

While we are talking about annoying phrases, another I can't stand is "Hate Crimes Law." When was the last time you had heard of a "Love Crime"?

Yesterday in New York City, a white thug, Nicholas Minucci, who took a baseball bat to the head of black car thief, Glenn Moore, was sentenced to 15 years. Among other things, he was convicted of a hate crime. I wonder, what is the average sentence for people who take a baseball bat (or other heavy object) to the head of another? I'll bet it isn't even close to 15 years.

Anyway, Steve Dunleavy has this take on it:

Annoying Phrases, Pt 2

By on 7.18.06 | 11:30AM

Here is a good one from a Mr. Robert Staggs:

A phrase that is overused today is "obscene profits" as if some level beyond normal profits is too much. Must we emposer a pane of economists and social engineers to ascertain the exact profit margin at which "much higher than normal" profits reaches the "obscene" level? Should we therefore have a special tax rate on obscene profits and, out of "fairness", subsidies for "obscene losses"?

Another phrase similar to yours is "tax cuts for the rich". Well, only "the rich" pay taxes. Two thirds of personal income tax receipts are paid by the top ten percent of wage earners, those making at least $95,000 a year.

But the phrase that really bugs me is "speaking truth to power". What does that even mean?

You should try "A Quaker Search for an Alternative to Violence." It's a lot of the hippy dippy nonsense Quakers are famous for, but if you scroll down a bit there actually is a good definition of speaking truth to power.

Annoying Phrases, Pt 1

By on 7.18.06 | 11:06AM

Getting some good responses which I will post throughout the day. Let's start with Terry Robb's pet peeve:

I liked your article on phraseology in the online American Spectator. "Don't take this personally" drives me crazy. I exist, I am a person, and when you direct criticism at me, it is at my person--not to my soul or some clump of rogue neurons acting independently to govern my behavior. When this trite phrase is trotted out, maybe I should just reply with "the devil made me do it". That would certainly relieve me of any "personal" responsibility.

Today on the Hugh Hewitt Show

By on 7.18.06 | 9:48AM

Well, here we go again. I'll be subbing for Hugh (6-9 EDT, Salem Radio Network nationally). We'll have a lot of war coverage (probably an interview with Dr. Chuck Freilich -- just retired from the Israeli National Security Council -- an update on immigration from Cong. Mike Pence, more on the New York Times flameout and - perhaps - a surprise guest from the Pentagon. (No, not that one. Big Dog is busy today). Hope you can tune in.

The Sad Decline of the New York Times, Part CCXIV

By on 7.17.06 | 6:42PM

Reading through Bob Herbert's column, diatribe, screed today, I was struck by this line:

The court said, in effect, that this is not the American way, that ours is not a Marx Brothers republic. Not yet, anyway. (It most likely will be if Mr. Bush gets to appoint one or two more justices to the court.)
The "Marx Brothers republic" is a state in which we no longer have any due process rights. Of course, the idea that we aren't going to be able to confront witnesses against us, examine the evidence, have counsel present, etc., is absurd and paranoid.

I suspect that 10 years ago (maybe even 5), the editor of the opinion page would have at least struck those last two lines.

Not anymore.

Scarborough Tonite

By on 7.17.06 | 2:16PM

I'll be on Scarborough Country tonight on MSNBC about 9 pm debating Pat Buchanan on the Israel-Lebanon fight. Should be fun.

The Good Rockefeller

By on 7.17.06 | 12:23PM

Condolences to the family of Win Rockefeller, the Lt. Governor of Arkansas, who died Sunday way too young, at 57, of a blood disorder. I worked 14 months in Little Rock, and by ALL accounts -- I mean every single time I heard his name, from any source -- Win Rockefeller was praised as a gentleman, a man of principle, and a great philanthropist. And he was a solid Republican. May his family know the Lord's love, and may Mr. Rockefeller rest in God's peace.