Monday, January 20, 2014

Silly

We live in a silly world, and the word “silly” does not always imply frivolously amusing. It is much more the dictionary definition: “Having or showing a lack of common sense or judgement; absurd and foolish.” From my personal observation, I’d say “absurd” is the operative word.

Our world today is much more conscious of inequalities and injustice than it was, even though most people are unwilling to do much more than acknowledge the fact. We have become a world of “political correctness,” wherein no matter what is said by anyone, in whatever spirit and with whatever intent, someone else is almost certain to be offended by it. However, in my humble opinion, the ubiquitous “P.C.” stands not so much for “Political Correctness” as “Pure Crap.”

We insist on playing silly…absurd…games for reasons I cannot comprehend.  Do you remember, for example, when people bought used cars? Not today! They buy “pre-owned vehicles.” Big difference! Huge!

Retail chains no longer have “employees;” they have “associates.” (Oooooh,“Associates”!) Talk about empowerment! Forget the fact that the title of “Associate” costs the company not a single penny of extra pay, and that the person proudly wearing the “Associate” badge is still probably trying to struggle by on the minimum wage.

We increasingly live in a world of obfuscation (love that word!). Police interviewed by the media following the shooting of several people by the sole occupant of a car firing out the driver’s side window—an event clearly witnessed by dozens or hundreds of bystanders or passersby—talk of how, when finally stopped, the “alleged” shooter “exited the vehicle.” In police-PC-speak, people do not get out of a car or truck or van or bus…they “exit the vehicle.” And though there is absolutely no doubt as to who was responsible for the shooting, our litigious society demands the use of the word “alleged.” Right.

Lies need only be told with great force and conviction by politicians and pundits to automatically become, to the liar’s followers, irrefutable and immutable truths. Facts are either totally ignored or are twisted into whatever shape the speaker wishes them to have.

Hyperbole is required in the selling of any product. Again, simple facts are not nearly enough. At least half of all the words in any sales pitch must be the most florid…never mind blatantly inaccurate…adjectives. 

No political or commercial promise need be fulfilled: we have become inured to them and are not the least bit upset when they are not kept. It is far easier to simply accept than to question or demand.

If open minds, common sense—and far too often common decency—were animals, they would be on the severely-endangered species list. (Sorry, no kittens and puppies in this blog. Just lots and lots of sheep…and we are them.)

I know, I know, the world has been going to hell since we climbed down from the trees, and the sky always seems to be falling. Perhaps despair over the silliness of the world and what it bodes for the future is what drives us forward. I hope that’s true.

Dorien's blogs are posted by 10 a.m. Central time every Monday and Thursday. Please take a moment to visit his website (http://www.doriengrey.com) and, if you enjoy these blogs, you might want to check out Short Circuits: a Life in Blogs (http://bit.ly/m8CSO1), which is also available as an audiobook (http://www.audible.com/pd/ref=sr_1_1?asin=B00DJAJYCS&qid=1372629062&sr=1-1).



1 comment:

Kage Alan said...

I often wonder if wording has changed over the years due to the lawyers. 'The shooter' versus 'the alleged shooter' because it hasn't been proven in a court of law yet. Definitely bullshit.

And I never understood the change to associates versus employees, though I believe it was meant to fool the masses into thinking they were more important to the company than as a simple 'employee.' They aren't. They never will. They are a warm body, little more.

Cynical? Naa. Realistic.