…otherwise known as academic-speak:

“Given the astonishing recrudescence of multifarious efforts to disrupt the free flow of discussion—from the astringencies of political correctness to the minatory dicta of woke ideologues—it is worth stepping back to ponder the career of this subtle but enlivening pillar of liberty.”


I know exactly what it all means:  but I resent the time wasted to translate it into comprehensible English.  Once again, a speed bump in my reading enjoyment of what is otherwise quite an interesting essay.


  1. A hallmark of intelligence is one’s ability to make complex topics understandable to the average person.

    This appears to be the opposite approach.

    1. I would go farther than that. It’s not about the average person; an intelligent speaker or writer knows that it’s important to make your communication as clear as possible. Communication to ANY audience, whether it’s made up of average people or super-geniuses. Because making yourself difficult to understand is STUPID. It’s counterproductive and inefficient.

      So why do people talk like this? Because they want to create the IMPRESSION that they’re smart, and they think using a lot of big words does that. But there’s another reason, one that explains why so many politicians and academics talk this way. They don’t WANT to be understood, because they aren’t actually saying anything. But if they dress up their empty blathering in fancy language, they can hope that the audience will think, “Well, I don’t understand anything that guy is saying. But that must be because he’s so much smarter than I am.” The last thing they want is for people to actually understand what they are saying, and recognize how empty and meaningless it is.

  2. Channeling William F. Buckley Jr. to attempt to sound more intelligent than you really are. 😛

    I agree with the other guys, real intelligence is being able to “dumb it down” so anyone can understand what you’re saying.

    The other way is the path to becoming a communist liberal fucktard.

    1. I don’t think he’s actually channeling William F. Buckley, Jr. He always said, when accused of using unusual words, that he used the word that means precisely what he means to say. I think it’s more like this “communicator” was whacked in the head by the one volume set of the works of William F. Buckley, Jr., and this is the result. I really only have three words to say about this turbid (and turgid) example of academic-speak: “Needlessly prolix, deliberately obfuscatory, and excessively sesquipedalian.”

  3. Reminds me of Corporatese:

    We need to incentivize our assets to on-board them to the paradigm in order to leverage the verticals and grow the marketplace, without marginalizing our income stream causing it to flatten.

    (Rough translation: We need to find ways to reward our employees so they’ll accept our new way of doing business, which will allow us to do business in formerly untapped markets and make more money, but a the same time we can’t fuck things up with our current customers or we’re going to lose money.)

    My co-workers and I had buzzword-bingo cards at a former job.

    1. I wish we’d thought of that when I was working in big corporation. I once had a table like a Chinese Menu, where you chose a word from column A, another from column B, and yet another from Column C, putting them together in sentences (Calendarized phased budgeting). Great fun; some combinations actually referred to things and processes actually used, so the amusement was increased.

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