Government As Rule By PR Firms And Woke Ascetics
Some members of our elite class believe that changing words is changing the world, while others think real change lies in self-renunciation.
New York governor Kathy Hochul signed a bill into law Thursday of last week removing words like “salesman” and “his” and “hers” from language included in an instance of Real Property Tax Law. Real estate brokers are not all men, proponents of the amendment say.
Anna M. Kaplan, the amendment’s co-sponsor, said the law breaks down unfair barriers. She went on to state that, “It’s important that we update these antiquated sections of the law to reflect our New York values and send a message that everyone, regardless of gender, should be able to pursue their passions.”
I like to explore the etiology of this new religion (which isn’t a “tired” descriptor, in my view, since it is like a religion), and a few thoughts come to mind when I see something like this.
My first thought is that the acolytes of the new ascendant philosophy might genuinely think that words are not just pointers for the demarcating of actual realities, but are realities in and of themselves, with nothing existing beyond them. It’s not quite Kantian, and I can't think of any idealist philosophy it might be analogous to, but, if anything, it is a lot like the basic assumptions in sorcery.
The idea is that if you change your words you change the world. This is superstitious at best, and at worst it’s a guaranteed path toward extreme governmental negligence. If your government thinks it can help you by changing the language around your problems, you’re in some serious trouble. Your government has been taken over by a PR firm.
I see people describe the rhetoric of the new ascendant philosophy as being like what you’d hear in the bowels of the New York Times’ HR department, and I think that that’s true where the public is concerned. The politically biased application of online terms of service allows certain subsets of the public to order the reprimand of who or what they dislike, the way they would at work. Everywhere becomes a workplace online, the HR descriptor is a good one.
But where government is concerned, the qualities taken on are like those of a marketing company. Rule by people who manage perceptions, instead of managing their actual responsibilities.
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