Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Weird Word of the Week: Politician

Here's the Google definition:  "A person who is professionally involved in politics, esp. as a holder of or a candidate for an elected office."


Much better: Ambrose Bierce's definition: "An eel in the fundamental mud upon which the superstructure of organized society is reared."

And it gets better: Here's Ambrose Bierce's definition of politics: "A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage."

And there's more! Dear Readers, check out this page of quotes on politics from the great author of  "The Devil's Dictionary," which, by the way, is available in paperback from Amazon.com starting around $9.00.  

Here are some more examples of the definitions in the book, taken from one of the Amazon.com reviewers:

ACTUALLY, adv. Perhaps; possibly.
AMNESTY, n. The state's magnanimity to those offenders whom it would be too expensive to punish.
BAROMETER, n. An ingenious instrument which indicates what kind of weather we are having.
GUILLOTINE, n. A machine which makes a Frenchman shrug his shoulders with good reason.
LOVE, n. A temporary insanity curable by marriage or by removal of the patient from the influences under which he incurred the disorder. 

An Old Politician and a Young Politician were travelling through a beautiful country, by the dusty highway which leads to the City of Prosperous Obscurity. Lured by the flowers and the shade and charmed by the songs of birds which invited to woodland paths and green fields, his imagination fired by glimpses of golden domes and glittering palaces in the distance on either hand, the Young Politician said: 

"Let us, I beseech thee, turn aside from this comfortless road leading, thou knowest whither, but not I. Let us turn our backs upon duty and abandon ourselves to the delights and advantages which beckon from every grove and call to us from every shining hill. Let us, if so thou wilt, follow this beautiful path, which, as thou seest, hath a guide-board saying, 'Turn in here all ye who seek the Palace of Political Distinction.'" 

"It is a beautiful path, my son," said the Old Politician, without either slackening his pace or turning his head, "and it leadeth among pleasant scenes. But the search for the Palace of Political Distinction is beset with one mighty peril." 

"What is that?" said the Young Politician. 

"The peril of finding it," the Old Politician replied, pushing on.                                         

No comments: