Tag Archives: Slanted Language

An exercise in spotting and correcting slanted language

Here's an exercise in spotting intentionally slanted language.  Michelle Malkin, commenting on Republican victories, finds that she must use the most divisive language she can in order to explain them.  I'll highlight four of five places in her opening two paragraphs, but I'm restraining myself:

Do Americans share President Obama's desire to impose redistributive social justice on the well off? In liberal Washington State, of all places, voters gave a definitive answer this Tuesday: No! The resounding rejection of a punitive "Robin Hood" initiative shows that it's not just red-state Republicans who oppose extreme tax hikes on the nation's wealth generators.

As Capitol Hill resumes debate on whether to extend the so-called "Bush tax cuts," the White House should pay special heed to the fate of little-noticed Initiative 1098. Its defeat by a whopping 65-35 margin doesn't bode well for Team Obama's class warriors still clinging bitterly to their soak-the-rich schemes.

Lordy. Would it kill Malkin to even try to lead with a fairly articulated argument before the framing starts? First, it's distributive justice, because it's about justice in the distribution of goods.  To call it "re-distributive" either implies that the current distribution meets standards of justice (it doesn't) or that redistribution, regardless of the current distribution, is counter to justice.  Calling it social justice is conservative double-dipping, as 'social justice' has become a new watchword up there with 'secular humanism,' 'liberalism,' and 'progressive' among conservatives.  Malkin, with this one, is showing she's too eager to talk the talk.

Taxing the rich is taken then to be punitive measures on the nation's wealth generators.  I just don't get it.  How is it a punishment, when their standard of living isn't being drastically effected, and yet their wealth depends on the proper functioning of the rest of the society?  Wealth-generators?  Wealth-generators?  Seriously.  I dare all those so-called Atlases to shrug.  None of these Atlases now-a-days are captains of industry or developers of ideas, as idealized by Ayn Rand and her huffy bunch of crazies.  They're skimmers of cream off banks and their holdings, people who encourage over-worked representatives to push mortgages to people who can't afford them, people who shuffle stock packages to hide debt.  Generators?  Overgrown ticks.

So-called "Bush tax cuts'.  So called… by everybody. Because they were tax cuts.  By President Bush.  Bigger than anything imagined by Reagan.  Mostly for the wealthy.  Shameless.  Better phrase: So-called 'So-called "Bush tax cuts" '.

Soak the rich schemes.  Schemes, indeed.   Schemes dreamed up by scheming schemers who dream of nothing but skimming the cream and reaping the bling of Atlases?  Schemes.  Schemes, as in plans.  Soak the rich, as in requiring those who've benefited the most to give back.   Schemes, oh, please.

The lesson: slanting can be fun, but it's really just an exercise for pretending you've got good arguments for what you're saying.  I wonder if Malkin has any of those?