On language Fanaticism

So Tim Bray used the word F... word, and everyone is up in arms. Sigh! If ever using the F word to say that project blackbox is fucking cool, then this was the time to say it.

Fanaticism is all about not wanting to see things in their context, to take a rule without ever taking circumstances into account. Fanatics get upset when the Pope suggests that religion should be rational, because he quotes someone making a remark one thousand years ago about violence and religion. The fantatic does not want to see the difference between 'Hitler said "XYZ"' and saying XYZ . The fanatic wants to work mechanically, applying regexps instead of sense and humanity to judge other people. Of course doing so, is so much easier, and the answers seem so much more clear cut! The fantic does not want to deal with people. He wants everyone to be the same. No color, no difference, everyone mouthing the same sentences, worked out by marketing droids, to say nothing and offend no one, where every smile is a fake smile, and so no smile at all. If you can't be depressed, you can't be happy either; if you can't be angry, you can't love either; if you can't be excited, you can't be calm.

So here is a little poem that was pointed out to me (taken from here), that clearly illustrates the danger of orwellian new talk:
In the beginning was the Plan and then came the Assumption.

And the Assumptions were without form, and the Plan was completely without substance, and darkness was upon the faces of the workers.

And they spoke amongst themselves saying, “It is a crock of shit, and it stinketh.”

And the workers went unto their supervisors and sayeth, “It is a pail of dung and none may abide the odor thereof.”

And the supervisors went unto their managers and sayeth unto them, “It is a container of excrement and it is very strong, such that none may abide by it.”

And the managers went unto their directors and sayeth, “It is a vessel of fertilizer, and none may abide its strength.”

And the directors spoke among themselves saying to one another, “It contains that which aids plant growth, and it is very strong.”

And the directors went unto their vice presidents to sayeth unto them, “It promotes growth and is very powerful.”

And the vice presidents went unto the president and sayeth unto him, “This new plan will actively promote the growth and efficiency of this company, and these areas in particular.” And the president looked upon the Plan, and saw that it was good.

And the Plan became Policy

And this is how Shit Happens.

And having said all that, and to end with a good positive statement, I'd like to chime in with Tim and say that the project blackbox, really is pretty damn awsome.

Comments:

Hah! This seems to be a 'biblical' reformulation of the 'Mushroom Song'.

Posted by Michael Bernstein on October 24, 2006 at 11:22 AM CEST #

I admit to using the "F" word to describe something other than the BlackBox.

Posted by terri on October 24, 2006 at 01:46 PM CEST #

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