Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Christian Technologies, Inc.

Electricity is a liquid!

New words are doubleplus bad. According to Christian Technologies, "the English language has changed again and again and in many instances has become corrupt" since 1828. Therefore we should go back to the unabridged Webster's Dictionary of that year. Many entries include bible quotes and religous references, but how that makes our language less "corrupt" is beyond me. It would probably surprise Webster himself, as he revised and added--I mean, corrupted--the text into the 1840s.

Only somewhat related, I finished reading Whitney Cross' The Burned-Over District: The Social and Intellectual History of Enthusiastic Religion in Western New York, 1800-1850. You reading that was probably as fun as me typing it. Anyway, I found this quote from 1845:

"You have been led, as I have, to unexpected results. In attacking one weak spot of the current system, you found that there were a good many others in the near neighborhood, till at last it became difficult to tell what was not rotten." (282)

It takes a little while to explain, but you can figure by the book's title that there were religious fanatics running around telling people how to live. Eventually they got religion into politics, with the growth of the Anti-Masonic Party and a Liberty Party that blurred those lines toward extremism. One reason I post this is because it sounds oddly current, foretelling of the downfall of religious extremists, or "ultraists" in the author's terms. Another reason is that it was written by an indecisive "Presbyterian, abolitionist, unionist, Swedenborgian, and spiritualist" minister named George Bush.

Crazy liberals.

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