Peter Voluntaryist Walker

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Essay: The Social Institution of the Dictionary (seven paragraphs)

(Revision Four copyleft Peter Voluntaryist Walker, 02-22-2018)
Who defines politically-left and politically-right? Most if not all of us presently living homo sapiens allow others to define life's most critical words like "left" or "right" for us because we are born as domesticated animals. In opposition, I've learn to define meanings -- not just words, meanings, for myself.
The word define means to describe and equally important, to differentiate from similar other things. For instance the academic field of zoology differentiates similar animals, say horses and zebras, as separate species if they can't routinely successfully interbreed. Definitions are among the most powerful of language tools and without agreed-upon definitions for key words used in problem solving, win-win solutions are almost impossible if not impossible to arrive at.
- Science-based definitions are much more objective and easier to agree on than definitions concerning human social interactions. Here indoctrination confuses word meanings. For instance to some, the word capitalism represents voluntary transactions; to others the very same word represents involuntary transactions such as corporate welfare. In such cases, if two people discussing an issue can't agree on a definition, they can come up with an agreeable substitute word. Scientists do this all the time, and if it can work for them it can work for anybody who doesn't have a sophist agenda. Where there's sophism, there's pseudo-discussion.
- I choose to have two or more definitions for social-interaction type words: What the word means to me, what the word means to most people, and what the word probably means to whomever I'm attempting to communicate with. This helps me communicate better, think better, and better recognize sophism.
- The dictionary is a social institution the same way the family is. Googling "TED talks dictionary" leads to an unconventional but true perspective of how the dictionary institution works -- almost like circular logic, where people writing dictionaries try to figure out what the general population means when they say certain words; and the general population trying to figure out what "the dictionary" says.
- TED Talks are examples of informative but incomplete information. Just as politicians are a special interest group, so are at least some of the people behind TED Talks. They and other powerfully entrenched special interest groups know they can't stop social change; and there's parts of social change they don't want to stop, because some but not all new things benefit them. Such groups seek to manage social change in a way that preserves the parts of the status-quo that benefit some at the expense of others. For instance, TED Talks won't publicize most dictionaries' customers being schools funded through governments, in-turn funded through managed illogic.
Thus the overall social institution of the dictionary supports euphemisms, ambiguity, and mal-definitions in social interaction related concepts as one small part of a much wider scope of using illogic to help the powerfully entrenched special interests manage social change in their favor. It's also a part of the dumbing-down process, because almost all of us humans are born logic and emotionally healthy but become easily manipulated if dumbed-down; and almost all of us are by forced tribal conformity; aka indoctrination, aka social engineering, aka human domestication (separate essays).
Endnotes -- None at this time.

My 2020 POTUS Line in the Sand

Unlike the USA, China and Russia have had identical foreign policies that respectively haven't changed in >100 and >70 years. Their dictators are for life like our SCOTUS,
If Tulsi were POTUS and Andrew VP, it would be bad-cop-good-cop because those of their respective skills and I conclude they are both competent to be better than any bad-cop-good-cop any other country/etc (aka "The State", capitalized because it is a religion) or NGO/etc can throw.
The same pattern applies to Trump-Pence and they are probably of the highest competence in bad-cop-good-cop, but it takes >four years to re-establish broken internal and international relationships and that puts the USA at a disadvantage.
Given the exponentially increasing risk of nuclear incidents/mishaps/wars, AI, etc, I see the Trump/Pence choice as the lesser evil of all other choices except the mega more tech-savvy/up-to-date possible choice Gabbard/Yang.

Orwell on Writing, aka Politics and the English Language

Excerpts from Politics and the English Language (attached .pdf):

"A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus:

"1. What am I trying to say?
2. What words will express it?
3. What image or idiom will make it clearer?
4. Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?

"And he will probably ask himself two more:

"1. Could I put it more shortly?
2. Have I said anything that is avoidably ugly?"

"I think the following rules will cover most cases:
1. Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.
2. Never use a long word where a short one will do.
3. If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.
4. Never use the passive where you can use the active.
5. Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.
6. Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous."