Friday, September 22, 2006

On insincerity and other political attributes

The great enemy of clear language is insincerity.

When there is a gap between one's real and one's declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink.

In our age there is no such thing as "keeping out of politics." All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia. When the general atmosphere is bad, language must suffer...

But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought. A bad usage can spread by tradition and imitation even among people who should and do know better. The debased language that I have been discussing is in some ways very convenient.


- George Orwell.

Taken from a site found via Fisking Central .

Andrew Sullivan is listed there as the original Fisk and the above quote makes up his September 22 post.

2 comments:

paris parfait said...

Did you know Andrew Sullivan has a blog on Typepad?

woman wandering said...

Do you have the address? I searched and could only locate his Time one.