Thursday, January 02, 2014

I am offended! Off with his head! Or how the left uses thought terminators.

Thought Terminators:

The left is doing roaring business the world over, political correctness is the order of the day, reservations based on caste lines are called for, as if they are actually 'noble', affirmative action for those of you in the west, universal healthcare for the weak as if all sick people are heroes and saints, heck it's now; spokesperson not spokesman you sexist pig! and journey-level plumber nor journeyman plumber so that that one female plumber in Kolkata??? is not insulted. not to forget my favorite: the existence of this term; religion of peace, laughable euphemisms that insult the intelligence of each and every one of us and the worst part is that they don't even try, etc.,

The list goes on. The right on the contrary is on the retreat, In modern day India for example, it is considered shameful to be patriotic, ever tried standing up in the presence of company when the Anthem is played or the Flag is hoisted? I guarantee your friends will look at you like they don't know you. People go out of their way to prove that they are not a 'backward' hindu. They'll say things like the ancient Hindus ate beef, and that Islam was spread by love in India. Have I, a bridge to sell these intellectual Lilliputians. 

Thought terminating cliches, to copy from Wikipedia, is " A cliché that is a commonly used phrase, or folk wisdom, sometimes used to quell cognitive dissonance. Though the clichéd phrase in and of itself may be valid in certain contexts, its application as a means of dismissing dissent or justifying fallacious logic is what makes it thought-terminating." Read this book for more info.

Anyway, how does this work in our context? First, this like many other things has been beautifully Indianized with the help of our well known Jury-rigging skills. In India, this is no longer a cliche but a noun so as to become more of a Thought Terminating Noun or Thought Terminator (in the interest of elegance.) but the technique is still the same. The idea is to undermine whatever goes against these commie ideas. For our purpose, let us take Narendra Modi.

Prima: Narendra Modi has done some great work in Gujarat and has shown himself to be a superior administra...

Secunda: [Butting in] But what about the 2001 Gujarat riots? (After this point in the conversation, Prima is distracted from his original idea of talking about the good Modi has done and has to now spend time refuting the idea that Modi is responsible for these riots.)

And this my friends is how it is used. The beauty is that it is a sure-shot way of derailing any opposing viewpoint. So how do you get out of this jam? How do you refuse an un-refuse-able gift? There is no easy way but to either preempt it by holding the bull by its horns or to counter it with your own thought terminator.

Prima: Narendra Modi has done some great work in Gujarat and has shown himself to be a superior administra...

Secunda: [Butting in] But what about the 2001 Gujarat riots?

Prima: He's been acquitted.(Nothing more than that, brevity is your friend here, do not give the opposition ammo for its arsenal)

Secunda: but... the Supreme Court blah blah...(Secunda is now tasked with the burden of showing why they feel that the Supreme court verdict should be questioned. Congratulations, you have turned tables with your nemesis)

Unfortunately, the Cockdeep Sardesais and the Pornoy Roys and the Burqa Dutts and soorpanika Ghoshs have all mastered this and they use it regularly. They have the side of Socially accepted 'thought terminators' on their side and retort with succinct one liners putting the burden of proof on the right. This is what we must learn. Or perish.

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