Thursday, December 27, 2007

Blue State Blue Streak

When I'm online, whether sending emails or posting content, I know that my kids may be reading, so just as in real life I think it's important to be civil. That's why for example, I don't use foul language either offline or online.

So why is it that most, if not all left-leaning blogs seem to overflow with the kinds of words that would have my mother reaching for the soap dish? Right-wing blogs, by contrast, rarely if ever use profanity.

Even the name of my favorite local liberal blog is not a word I'd want to hear coming from my five-year-old. And the progressive bloggers' obsession with potty talk is not just something I'm imagining. Somebody did an unscientific study of that shows filthy language is 41 times more common on liberal blogs than on conservative ones.

I've been reading Steven Pinker's latest book, The Stuff of Thought, where he explains how naughty words are a window into emotion, which of course explains why angry liberals are profane, but why don't conservatives dish it back?

3 comments:

Jack said...

Because conservatives are all a bunch of #$!*@&!! idiots, that's why.

lesley said...

Because conservatives have put a lot of work into creating highly organized ways to use language for manipulation and this is more effective for them(http://www.rockridgeinstitute.org/aboutus/frames-and-framing/)

Richard Sprague said...

I'm not convinced "framing" is all that important. I agree with Steven Pinker, who thinks Lakoff gets carried away and ignores that there really are fundamental differences (beyond language) in the way people think about political issues. Saying we "invaded" Iraq rather than "liberated" Iraq just exposes the real debate better -- it doesn't change anyone's mind. People aren't stupid.