(Supremely) Bad Words

Special to the Star-Telegram Every three decades or so, there’s a federal case over broadcasting bad language. The most recent was on Election Day before the Supreme Court. Note: in the original print edition (image below), the headline was “Actually, the Constitution is pretty clear on things.” I objected to the editor afterwards and the …

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Semantic pollution fouling the airwaves

Special to the Star-Telegram Chesapeake Energy’s impressive and expensive PR campaign has folks asking questions. Lots of questions. One of the overlooked and under-reported aspects related to drilling in the Barnett Shale is the negative impact to our local linguistic environment. We’re not talking particulate matter here. This is the worrisome increase in measurable propagandulate …

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But what if …

Special to the Star-Telegram The local community had an opportunity to go beyond talking about race. Instead, we passed to avoid the front page, content to be merely a footnote. Today is graduation day at Texas Christian University. I teach a class in general semantics there, and seven of my 46 students will walk across …

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India: A Report

Read an English translation of an original Gujurati language news article. Read an account of one presentation here in the 20 November edition of the daily newspaper DNA (Daily News & Analysis).   Thanks to underwriting from Mr. Balvant K. Parekh, Chairman of Pidilite Industries Ltd, IGS Board President Andrea Johnson and I spent more …

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A Fence Sieve Language

(Published in the July 2007 edition of ETC: A Review of General Semantics, Volume 64 No. 3) A culture cannot be discriminatingly accepted, much less be modified, except by persons who have seen through it—by persons who have cut holes in the confining stockade of verbalized symbols and so are able to look at the …

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The code of our country

Special to the Star-Telegram In 21st-century America, honor is an option — not necessary, not sufficient, desirable only if it doesn’t jeopardize the bottom line. I grew up playing sports in the Texas Panhandle. On my bedroom wall, I had a plaque inscribed with a then-famous Grantland Rice saying: For when the one great scorer …

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Eating Menus

(Published in ETC: A Review of General Semantics Volume 61 No. 1, 2004) This issue of ETC marks another transition in the organizational evolution of a discipline. Published from 1943-1948 by the Society for General Semantics, then from 1949-2003 by the International Society for General Semantics, ETC now falls under the stewardship of the Institute …

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