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Name-calling: The Basest form of Propaganda

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posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:43 PM
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Let it be known that I defend without hesitation the right for a person to call other people names. But in the very same way, I also reserve without restraint the right to ridicule that person for doing so. Free speech, though a licence to speak how you please, is also a licence for others to puncture your threadbare propaganda with even more free speech.

I say propaganda because, besides being fallacious, that is what name-calling is. It is a tool of propaganda, and rarely a point of fact. We should treat with suspicion the one who uses pejoratives in place of reasoned argument because it appears he is grasping for the lowest common denominator, and sometimes reaching it.

Observe when, in 1991, the Rwandan magazine Kangura posed on its cover the menacing question: “Which weapons are we going to use to beat the cockroaches for good?” next to an image of a machete. The name had nothing to do with any human being, Tutsi or otherwise, but in a thought-poor and superstitious mind, throw in a little hasty generalization, a little association fallacy, a little ad hominem and we are one step closer to justifying genocide.

Go through any anti-Trump, anti-Clinton or anti-anyone article or thread for some examples. If you were to count the amount of pejoratives an author uses to pad his diatribe, you would also have a good indication of the amount of arguments he was unable to come up with in their stead, and a fair amount of evidence towards his insincerity in this regard. Of course, after stripping away the pejoratives, there is often very little substance left, and we find the names were meant to give force to something already too weak to begin with.

Like most propaganda, the use of name-calling is used to associate the target with something negative for the purpose of inspiring fear or disdain in an audience, or worse, to set off a chorus of conformist snickering and congratulatory pack-patting among those amused by it. That same jeering often rings loudest right when the worst atrocities and injustices are being committed.

To those with more refined tastes, not only is name-calling designed to employ the weak and lazy thinking of an audience, but it also reveals the weak and lazy thinking of the very one using it. One wouldn’t require rendering his work into something found on a playground if he himself didn’t belong there.




posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:54 PM
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Can't really add to that.

Maybe with a little brevity...

It is the sign of a small mind and/or a losing argument when name calling becomes apparent.


But you also rightly point out that many begin their less than constructive criticism with name calling in many threads and of course all across the web...


Couldn't have said it better than you did though.

Star & Flag.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 07:16 PM
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More and more, I see that tactic used in an attempt to shut down the other person, and for something for like-minded people to rally around, in mutual deriding of others.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 07:37 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Winston Churchill on Prime Minister Clement Attlee: "He is a modest man with much to be modest about."

Abraham Lincoln on Stephen Douglas: “His argument is as thin as the homeopathic soup that was made by boiling the shadow of a pigeon that had been starved to death.”

Winston Churchill on Prime Minister Clement Attlee: “An empty cab pulled up to Downing Street. Clement Attlee got out.”

Andrew Jackson: “I have only two regrets: I didn't shoot Henry Clay and I didn't hang John C. Calhoun.” John C. Calhoun was his Vice President.

Former British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli on Former British Prime Minister William Gladstone: “If Gladstone fell into the Thames, that would be a misfortune. If anybody pulled him out, that, I suppose, would be a calamity.”

Assistant Secretary of the Navy Teddy Roosevelt on President William McKinley: “No more backbone than a chocolate éclair.”

John Montagu (after a heated exchange with John Wilkes): "Sir, I do not know whether you will die on the gallows or of the pox!" John Wilkes: “That, sir, depends on whether I first embrace your Lordship's principles or your Lordship's mistresses.”

French statesman Georges Clemenceau on British politician David Lloyd George: “Oh, if I could piss the way he speaks!”

www.msn.com...=1




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Just wanted to put it in historical perspective.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 08:53 PM
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originally posted by: DBCowboy
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Winston Churchill on Prime Minister Clement Attlee: "He is a modest man with much to be modest about."

Abraham Lincoln on Stephen Douglas: “His argument is as thin as the homeopathic soup that was made by boiling the shadow of a pigeon that had been starved to death.”

Winston Churchill on Prime Minister Clement Attlee: “An empty cab pulled up to Downing Street. Clement Attlee got out.”

Andrew Jackson: “I have only two regrets: I didn't shoot Henry Clay and I didn't hang John C. Calhoun.” John C. Calhoun was his Vice President.

Former British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli on Former British Prime Minister William Gladstone: “If Gladstone fell into the Thames, that would be a misfortune. If anybody pulled him out, that, I suppose, would be a calamity.”

Assistant Secretary of the Navy Teddy Roosevelt on President William McKinley: “No more backbone than a chocolate éclair.”

John Montagu (after a heated exchange with John Wilkes): "Sir, I do not know whether you will die on the gallows or of the pox!" John Wilkes: “That, sir, depends on whether I first embrace your Lordship's principles or your Lordship's mistresses.”

French statesman Georges Clemenceau on British politician David Lloyd George: “Oh, if I could piss the way he speaks!”

www.msn.com...=1




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Just wanted to put it in historical perspective.


I like that!


I do call into question though the OP's contention that name calling is fallacious, I call Trump for instance a demagogue,
Definition,
"a political leader who seeks support by appealing to popular desires and prejudices rather than by using rational argument."
Example, professes to build a Huuuge wall basically to keep people out..or in? The er, demographs of that, well nigh impossible either way, as would realistically the geographs. So he is a irrational poser.
Professes to execute all murderers of police, something not in his remit, either as a citizen or a president, so he is both a poser..and an exceptionalist, and arguably, an elitist, as well as being irrational.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 11:36 PM
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a reply to: DBCowboy

Now that is how you insult people.

Thomas Jefferson on Adams:

that strange compound of ignorance and ferocity, of deceit and weakness, a hideous, hermaphroditical character which has neither the force and firmness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman."

That's why I love American politics.



posted on Jun, 10 2016 @ 01:31 AM
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I basically agree with everything you just said and just want to support you with this comment.

Thank you for this.



posted on Jun, 11 2016 @ 09:07 AM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

You use language like a squid uses ink

Pretending that words are more honorable used one way (your way) - and less another?


To those with more refined tastes, not only is name-calling designed to employ the weak and lazy thinking of an audience, but it also reveals the weak and lazy thinking of the very one using it. One wouldn’t require rendering his work into something found on a playground if he himself didn’t belong there.


Nothing but a fashion choice. You just think your shoes are prettier than your girlfriends



posted on Jun, 11 2016 @ 11:48 AM
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a reply to: Spiramirabilis

Yes more honourable, not to mention, more aesthetically pleasing. Granted, I have a lot to learn in both areas, but I think these are good principles.

Your insults here, for instance, are not only true but also contain a little more wit than I've come to expect from you. You could have called me an outright cephalopod or dandy, but you chose the honourable route. Careful, you'll make a fan of me yet.




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