Hitler quote (UNCLASSIFIED)

David A. Daniel dad at POKERWIZ.COM
Wed Sep 21 20:23:15 UTC 2011

Hear, hear. What he said.


Beyond the scope--I can see that. Beneath the dignity? Not really. Note tha=
DAD did not refer to Republicans as Nazis--he said Hitler was a Republican.
Perhaps it's subtle, but there IS a difference. Similarly, identifying
someone's propaganda tactics as resembling those of Goebbels does not imply
that there is an identification of the respective persons. Saying someone
has a "Hitlerian appeal" is not saying that someone is Hitler--in fact, thi=
does not compare the ideologies in the slightest. The first time I saw a
reference to "Hitlerian appeal" in the news was when a NH newspaper
described Gary Hart's campaign. It was not meant to be a term of
derision--but it did point out that Hart supporters were extremely devoted
without really knowing why. When asked to describe what Hart stood for, mos=
floundered... or is it "foundered"?

Interestingly, as a non-native speaker, for a long time I've been wondering
if there is a difference between founder and flounder, as well as forms and
derivatives. I've mostly used "flounder", considering "founder" to be
/bookish/.  It's not an eggcorn--at least, not in at least 400 years, if yo=
believe the OED. But what is described there as foundering or floundering I
would describe as thrashing [about]. When I hear flounder, I am not thinkin=
about a "violent stumble", but rather being lost, hesitant, obstructed in
one's goals by own inability, ineptitude or indecision, progressing clumsil=
or not at all, failing to reach a goal and wandering aimlessly instead.
Whatever it is, it does not sound "violent" to me. Is that a question of
degree or there a more fundamental (etymological pun intended) difference.

Macmillan D has more basic definitions that point that my understanding of
f(l)oundering may be off:

=E2=96=B8 verb:  stumble and nearly fall ("The horses foundered")
> =E2=96=B8 verb:  sink below the surface
> =E2=96=B8 verb:  fail utterly; collapse ("The project foundered")
> =E2=96=B8 verb:  break down, literally or metaphorically

AHD is similar:

*  To sink below the surface of the water: The ship struck a reef and
> foundered.
> *  To cave in; sink: The platform swayed and then foundered.
> *  To fail utterly; collapse: a marriage that soon foundered.
> *  To stumble, especially to stumble and go lame. Used of horses.
> *  To become ill from overeating. Used of livestock.
> *  To be afflicted with laminitis. Used of horses.

MWOLD is much more concise:

: to become disabled; especially : to go lame
> : to give way : collapse

Going in reverse on "flounder":

: to struggle to move or obtain footing : thrash about wildly
> : to proceed or act clumsily or ineffectually

So far, it looks like my personal usage fits "flounder" exactly and
"founder" not at all!


*  To make clumsy attempts to move or regain one's balance.
> *  To move or act clumsily and in confusion. See Synonyms at blunder. See
> Usage Note at founder1.
> Probably alteration of founder1
> Usage Note:
> The verbs founder and flounder are often confused. Founder comes from a
> Latin word meaning "bottom" (as in foundation) and originally referred to
> knocking enemies down; it is now also used to mean "to fail utterly,
> collapse." Flounder means "to move clumsily, thrash about," and hence "to
> proceed in confusion." If John is foundering in Chemistry 1, he had bette=
> drop the course; if he is floundering, he may yet pull through.

And Macmillan:

=E2=96=B8 verb:  to feel confused and not know what to say or do next
> Maureen floundered, trying to think of a response.
> =E2=96=B8 verb:  to move with great difficulty and in an uncontrolled way
> The horses were floundering in the deep snow.
> =E2=96=B8 verb:  to experience difficulties and be likely to fail
> The country=E2=80=99s economy is floundering and the future is uncertain.

I don't see the OED making quite as radical a distinction. But that's not
too surprising as the latest quotation between the two is from 1893.


On Wed, Sep 21, 2011 at 3:10 PM, Mullins, Bill AMRDEC <
Bill.Mullins at us.army.mil> wrote:

> One doesn't have to be a Republican (and I'm not) to find DAD's comment
> to be beneath the dignity of this list.
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On
> Behalf Of
> > David A. Daniel
> > Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2011 10:56 AM
> > Subject: Re: Hitler quote
> >
> > -
> >
> > Hmph. Hitler was a Republican? Not a surprise.
> > DAD

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