posted on Jun, 19 2007 @ 01:23 AM
My thanks for your post and the article by Bernstein. I agree with the basic premise of that article and your viewpoint.
I work in a local shipyard and very much notice the format described by you and Bernstein seems to fit that pattern.
I will also state that even among people of degrees and letters their language abilitys seem to be restricted. I often and perhapsed erroneously
surmise that this is because they watch to much television. Television seems to me to have become a type of seduction ..across the board both in
lowest common denominator of language and values systems which accompany.
Our language abilitys seem to have been hijacked somewhere along the line...substituted...without many even being aware.
I also agree that in lieu of deep thought and ability to expression by language we have come down to cliches or cheap words or phrases to decribe what
we feel or emote...not necessarily depth and variety or ability in what we think.
As to news and information ..I agree. You are getting me started here now!! As I have stated in other posts..years ago before home computers I
listened to alot of shortwave radio and tuned into many foreign broadcasts when they would send out thier signals in English. It was here that I began
to grasp what a heavy paper curtain we have here in this country.
Having somewhat of an electronic background it was not difficult for me to discern that this could also continue with on line services.
It most certainly is occuring with television formats...programming/brainwashing. And I mean this no matter from where one gets thier information
through the "Boob tube." I am careful what I buy into from this source.
Most of my news and information now days is from this computer but I also know that alot of discretion is required here too. What I get here is a
larger variety from which to decide...but ...the buyer beware as the olde folks taught me.
As to reading HeroNumber0...much of this skill has been replaced by watching. People have become watchers rather than doers and thinkers. It is very
easy to let television and movies do our thinking and emoting for us. To live second hand so to speak....vicarious.
It is amazing to me the number of people I know who cannot describe some kind of thought pattern in terms of thier own thinking. Instead they
substitute a movie or television show they have watched..for real experience. I do not believe some of them are even aware of such in themselves. They
are second hand people.
I suppose one could say this about reading books ....but books have taught me many things. Manuals and how to read them I got from from my Father. How
to do, how to fix,and how to make your own. This to me is not second hand...especially if you are sufficiently gifted to customize further in what you
learn from books.
Now just reading for pleasure..I got from my mother. When I have time ,which is not often anymore, I like to read books on history, politics,
economics, philosophy, and just plain fiction if it appears of intrest to me.
A good book and some peace and quiet I can literally camp out and ignore the world surrounding me.
From my early formative years of Edgar Rice Borroughs and Louis Lamour..to a more sophisticated...pallate of James Clavell, Pearl Buck, and others.
But through all of this..somewhere along the line I began to notice words themselves. Meanings ...and eventually the etymology of words. I learned
with Edgar Rice Borroughs ,so many years ago, that my basic vocabularly was sorely lacking. I found myself often devouring his writing style and
keeping a dictionary close. This was where I discovered that women were described as "handsome", a use of language for which one might today be
slapped. Also as I recall a "hansom" was a horse drawn carriage or a cab back in those days.
Today I still recall with fondness the lessons in langauge and words taught to me by the storys of Edgar Rice Burroughs.
But I must also tell you, HeroNumber, that English in public school was never my strong point. I hated most of what they fed us in school though I
can appreciate it more today. I still recall disliking the reading of Beowulf. I thought it was awful back then. And English grammer...in this I was
I suppose my appreciation of history late in life helped with reading and great authors. They are connected..history and language.. in how one is
able to digest and appreciate what one reads.
My limited language abilitys dont allow me to describe sufficiently how poor language abilitys limit our skills in appreciating the world around us
and our ability to express such to others outside of some four letter words for a base emotion.
When you know certain traits of language...you can see things or ideas in three dimensions instead of only two. You can see in colours instead of just
black and white. You can even see and grasp that which is not ordinarily visible to most. A fourth dimension... Subtilty, nuance....like radar seeing
in the dark, or having the ability to see in ones mind the necessary steps to work that rubik's cube which drove so many of us to madness some years
back. The ability to see and describe to others that which is not seen by the naked eye.
Language has the ability to bridge this gap for those skilled in its usage. It is beautiful the manner and workings of language to those who
All of us have the ability to do this for ourselves. It is a gift a blessing which must be properly nourished and fed. It is not a skill or trait
which comes naturally but it is very very valuable.
Heronumber0, thanks for your post,