Author Says Bush and Blair Are Mangling English

Aurolyn Luykx aurolynluykx at
Wed Nov 17 20:59:28 UTC 2004

It's been suggested that Bush does this kind of thng
on purpose, to appeal to the "common man" and distance
himself from pointy-headed intellectuals who care
about things like standard grammar and pronunciation.
Could be -- I can't imagine no one has ever said "Sir,
it's pronouced NUC-LE-AR..."
Purposeful or not, it seems to be working. No one ever
went broke (or lost an election) misunderestimating
the intelligence of the American public.

--- Ronald Kephart <rkephart at> wrote:

> At 3:17 PM -0500 11/16/04, Harold F. Schiffman
> wrote:
> >Author Says Bush and Blair Are Mangling English
> >[...]
> >Humphrys picks on Bush -- who once famously used
> the word
> >"misunderestimate"...
> There are so many really, really valid reasons to
> pick on, and indeed
> even advocate for the impeachment of, Bush. For
> example, the
> thousands dead in Iraq (he wrote, imitating Blair).
> But get your
> knickers in a knot over "misunderestimate"? I'm
> sorry, but this just
> doesn't fire up my moral outrage. Besides, it seems
> like a perfectly
> understandable word to me: the underestimation was
> mismanaged,
> inaccurately carried out, whatever. Doesn't this
> illustrate what
> Hockett called the productivity design feature of
> language?
> Ron


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