Doublespeak by lutz essay


A spin doctor sits there and says, "Oh no, no, no, you didn't hear what you thought you heard. Let me tell you what you really heard, and proceeds to put a spin on. And the spin turns out to be something entirely different than what was said or what was written or whatever. This has now become a profession. And it's become, unfortunately, something of a growth industry," says Mr. The housing bubble was exacerbated by the fact that people thought they understood the mortgages they were getting, only to find out that they were in over their heads.

In a democracy, we decide what policies and candidates to back by listening to the public discourse. If the discussion is carried out in doublespeak, organizations deliberately mislead the people so don't really know what's going on, and we wind up making decisions of social importance on the wrong basis. You can identify doublespeak by looking at who is saying what to whom, under what conditions and circumstances, with what intent and what result. If a politician stands up and speaks to you and says, "I am giving you exactly what I believe, and then turns around and does the opposite, then you've got a pretty good yardstick.

She was pretending to tell me something, and it turns out it wasn't what she meant at all, she meant something different," says Mr.

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Lutz, in his doublespeak litmus test. You say I'm sorry for your loss, or I'm sorry she passed away. But no one is being misled. In fact, it's a mark of your concern for the other person that you use that euphemism. However when you start using a euphemism because you want to avoid the harsh reality, then you're engaged in doublespeak. For example, the State Department invented the euphemistic doublespeak term "unlawful arbitrary detention" or "unlawful arbitrary deprivation of life," says Mr. In the workplace, by the workers, jargon is fine because everyone understands it. For example, "involuntary conversion," is a legal term which means the loss of use of your property due to fire, theft or public condemnation.

If your car is stolen, legally that's an involuntary conversion of your property. However, when you talk, as one airline did, about the involuntary conversion of a , meaning that the plane crashed, then we've moved into using jargon is doublespeak. I used to listen to his testimony before Congress just so impressed with his use of economic jargon, doublespeak, gobbledygook and it all sounded so impressive, didn't it?

But it didn't mean anything that anybody could figure out," says Mr. For example, "used cars" are now "pre-owned" or even "experienced. The constant use of doublespeak has a hardening effect in that we come to expect it,which is unfortunate because we shouldn't.

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As an analogy Lutz uses air-quality. As long as the air quality is good no one is concerned, or pays much attention.

Doublespeak by William Lutz, Politics and the English Language George Orwell Oct 2017

He believes we should have the same concerns about the quality of language that is used in public discourse. And says that we need to voice our concerns to politicians who use doublespeak much as we would to manufacturers of products that malfunction. We'd return the product for refund and should do the same when we hear doublespeak by stopping to be passive consumers of language and demanding those who use doublespeak to rephrase themselves.

It's difficult to lie in plain English, cause it's easier for people to catch you. In the case of Enron, William explains that they used footnotes that were so cryptic they were incomprehensible, and that both journalists and analysts covering the stock could not find a single Enron representative who could explain them. See All Customer Reviews. Shop Books. Read an excerpt of this book!

Why Doublespeak is Dangerous | On the RecordOnline Podcast

Add to Wishlist. USD Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Overview Doublespeak is the language of non-responsibility, carefully constructed to appear to communicate when it fact it doesn't.

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Doublespeak lutz essay

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