Friday, June 27, 2014

Cheap shots and bright sparks

Psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow explaining his support for presidential candidate Newt Gingrich a couple of years ago, in psychiatric terms.
Via Kilgore:
“I’m suspect,” Dr. Keith Ablow said Thursday on “Outnumbered” as the US men’s national team faced off against Germany. “I am suspect because, here’s the thing. Why, at a time when there are so many national and international issues of such prominence — I’m a little suspicious of yet another bread-and-circus routine. Let’s roll out the marijuana, pull back the laws, and get people even more crazy about yet another entertainment event.”
Yes, Dr. Ablow, you've discovered a fairly vast conspiracy here: in March 2003, State Senator Obama, realizing he might have a Benghazi scandal to deal with by the time he got to his second term as president, secretly sent emissaries to FIFA asking the [jump]
association to stage the 2014 World Cup in South America for the first time since 1978, to make it close enough for Americans to notice it was there, in the hope of distracting them from two-year-old stories from faraway North Africa. I mean, how else could you explain it?

Timothy Ray Murray.
So you can have Timothy Ray Murray of Oklahoma, who just lost his Republican primary challenge to House Agriculture chairman Frank Lucas and now claims that Lucas has been dead for three years and is being represented by a body double and should therefore not be regarded as having won the primary (the real Lucas was apparently publicly executed in Kiev, by the International Court of Justice—it was televised but only Murray saw it, presumably with his special TV receiver where he had his root canal), but let's face it, he's a loser (5.7% of the vote).

My favorite Republican candidate, in contrast, is a winner, Michigan's Jordan D. Haskins, running for the Saginaw seat in the State House of Representatives, who will totally be finished with his parole well over a week before Election Day (11 days before Election Day, to be exact) and has already been out of jail for literally months since his last conviction on his preferred felony, an activity called "cranking", which involves cranking the engine of somebody's vehicle with the spark plug wires pulled out and masturbating to the, um, well, whatever. He was just a kid of 22 then, and now he's 24, and, he says,
"That isn't even me anymore. I'm not sure what really changed or what happened. I don't know what it is about when you get into your 20s. Your chemistry changes. You get wiser and smarter a little bit. That's what happened to me....
"I want to be the Republican, the conservative candidate that says, you know, conservatism is for you. Because conservatism, real conservatism, true red-blooded American conservatism is about grit, hard work, loyalty and traditional values. Your family values. The three values that make up my stool of conservatism are faith, family and freedom."
I'm not making up any "stool" jokes here and I'd appreciate if you all would show similar restraint. (mlive Saginaw, via Mediaite)

And—Hai Kathryn Jean, it's been so long, wotcher been up to?
Uh, his housekeeper got an IUD on her insurance card?

Apropos of Dr. Ablow's bizarre misuse of "suspect", there was a strange but impassioned linguistic controversy over at Booman's the other day as to whether it could be legitimate to use the word "nauseous" to mean "feeling nausea" as well as the historically correct meaning of "inspiring nausea", Booman himself being surprisingly starchy and conservative on the issue, and I speaking for the inevitability of language change. Since this is the rare subject I actually know something about, I can't let it go.

Boo came up with a bunch of annoying examples of -ous adjectives that could only be used his object-oriented way: "adventurous" (which is wrong, come to think of it, you can have "an adventurous girl" who has adventures alongside "an adventurous day" that provides adventures), "advantageous", "abstentious". (Wut?) The only counterexample I could come up with with "gracious" meaning "conferring grace" (God is gracious) and "manifesting grace" (a gracious lady).

Anyway here's one more: "Suspicious", the word old Ablow wanted here, is a much better example than any of us came up with of how it can go both ways (feeling suspicion vs. inspiring suspicion in others). There's also "curious" (a curious child, a curious story, the latter I guess chiefly Brit. and presumably historically earlier too).

Mark Liberman at Language Log ably handles "suspect" (a much less rare usage than I would have imagined) and "nauseous" (without a Booman reference) in a single post.


Comic paranoid Lyle Zapato reports Timothy Ray Murray's solemn promise to the Oklahoma voters:
Murray makes clear that these are robotic A.I. replacements, not mere actors, and that he wants no part in this:
I will NEVER use Artificial Intelligence look alike to voice what The Representative’s Office is doing nor own a robot look alike. The World knows the truth, and We must always share the truth.

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