Pop quiz for self-described Republicans, Libertarians, Conservatives, and Classic Liberals.1 What is your first thought when you see this headline from an article in today’s Wall Street Journal?
Choose the one option which most closely corresponds to your belief:
Letter to the FBI from a concerned citizen.
Donald Trump’s Presidential campaign just ended.
Hopefully I won’t have to eat those words; it’s the risk one takes when making predictions, and there are plenty of ways I could be misconstruing the results of last night’s Iowa Caucus. I’m not a political expert, nor am I immune to the lure of thinking something to be so because I want it to be so. It would be irrational to count him out, but in considering a candidate so anti-rational as Trump, indulge me my gut feeling.
The shocker headline, A US town has rejected a proposal for a solar farm following public concerns that solar panels ‘suck up all the energy from the sun’ is such a good illustration that the word following is a journalistic weasel word that it has been added to the list of ways which so-called journalists (as well as real ones) mislead us here on Monochromatic Outlook
It’s sad and dangerous how easy it is (for everyone) to misunderstand a slogan and react defensively. When a belief is condensed to a few words, it necessarily assumes a whole set of contexts, contexts a reader of that slogan may misunderstand. There are examples of brilliant writing where tremendous nuance has been conveyed in only three words; they are exceedingly rare.