Language is changing in America; indeed, probably throughout the West. And the changes are not good.

The changes I see being introduced into English speech in America, are designed to kill off the practices and assumptions of individual freedom and responsive representation that have also been embedded for generations in us as a people.

The language and language practice changes that have arisen in the past few years tend to “deconstruct” (a favorite word of the globalist elite) the core concepts upon which the West has been built for four millennia. They also tend to subvert the norms of representational government that America has practiced since its founding. The new phrasings, cliches and speech patterns replace those foundational Western concepts with Marxist/feudalist and oligarchical concepts.

Language, of course, always changes. That is why we distinguish “living” from “dead languages.” “Dead languages” have stopped changing because they are not in use by living societies.

However, the new language usages that concern me are not from language changing organically, the way it used to—that is to say, via changes in sensibility and usage; via new inventions arising and requiring terminologies, or old habits, traditions and objects passing out of memory. In other words, the changes being imposed on our language and language practices are not arising for the same reasons that we no longer talk about “voyageurs” rather than salesmen, or why we no longer discuss wielding a “bare bodkin”.

Rather, the same monsters who have taken the rest of human civilization into their grip for the last two years, to establish their neo-Marxist/feudalist globalist oligarchy, are deliberately driving artificial changes in language and language practices.

(I’ll call the goal of these monsters, awkwardly, “NFGO” for short, as we tend to lack a catchall phrase for this horror. A “neo-Marxist/feudalist globalist oligarchy’ sounds like a contradiction in terms, but it isn’t; it’s neo-Marxist feudalism for you and me, friend, and the pleasures of a globalist oligarchy—with the oligarchy’s elites at the pinnacle—for them.)

Why does this matter more than slightly?

Changes in language are far from trivial. Linguists have pointed out, as I explore in my new book Facing the Beast: Courage, Faith and Resistance in a New Dark Age, that language constructs reality. People can only conceive, understand, communicate about and act upon what they can name.

Thus, language and language practices shape national identity and even individual character: “[S]peakers of different languages develop different cognitive skills and predispositions, as shaped by the structures and patterns of their languages,” writes Dr Lera Boroditsky, Associate Professor of Cognitive Science at UCSD, in her essay “Language and the Brain”

So your conciousness is affected by your language, which in turn imprints your brain processing; the way you structure information is affected by details as subtle as the direction in which letters flow: “Exposure to written language also restructures the brain, even when acquired late in life. Even seemingly surface properties, such as writing direction (left-to-right or right-to-left), have profound consequences for how people attend to, imagine, and organize information,” writes Dr Boroditsky.

When certain language practices are altered, they won’t just affect how easily people can understand each other; they can actually shut down certain assumptions about freedom and accountability, and thus close down expectations of political representation and individual rights, for an entire society.

New practices introduced into language can thus chip away at the identities of Westerners, and especially of Americans, to wear down what is most Western and American in the core of their being; to introduce, at level of their brain processing, acceptance of what would formerly have been alien norms of social conformity, servitude, submissiveness, powerlessness and hopelessness.

So those who wish to destroy America in other, material ways, such as by poisoning our pharmaceutical supply, as we discussed in Facing the Beast, or by buying up our farmland, are not wasting their time in their efforts also to subvert our language.

Here are some examples.

I. “Social Distancing.” “Public Health.” “Public Good.” “Public Safety.” I’ve written about how Chinese Communist ideas popped up like mushrooms overnight when the “pandemic” drama was rolled out in 2020. “Social distancing” became a “thing,” even though in the individualistic West, the “social” part of that term was not organic.

The phrase lingers, threateningly, to this day: “In the pandemic, people needed moments of levity, and Barrymore’s crew could avoid spreading the virus by wearing face masks and social distancing.—Tori Otten, The New Republic, 15 Sep. 2023”.

The “social” of “social distancing,” just like the privileging of “public health” as a concept that is supposed to stamp out fragile protests about personal choices, or the rise of terms such as “safety” and “public safety” (and I gather, in Europe and Britain, “convenience”), are being used in ways that are meant to crush faint murmurs about rights and freedoms. And all of these are Marxist usages meant entirely to reorder how we think of humans in groups.

We used to have a society made up of individuals. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was famously accused of having said, in a 1987 interview in Women’s Own, that “there is no such thing as society.” I was living in Britain at the time and “There is no such thing as society” was inaccurately attributed to her everywhere, making her sound driven slightly mad with her lust for unfettered individualism.

And yet what she really said was:

“I think we have gone through a period when too many children and people have been given to understand ‘I have a problem, it is the Government’s job to cope with it!’ or ‘I have a problem, I will go and get a grant to cope with it!’ ‘I am homeless, the Government must house me!’ and so they are casting their problems on society and who [italics mine] is society? There is no such thing! There are individual men and women and there are families and no government can do anything except through people [italics mine] and people look to themselves first.... [It] is, I think, one of the tragedies in which many of the benefits we give, which were meant to reassure people that if they were sick or ill there was a safety net and there was help, that many of the benefits which were meant to help people who were unfortunate ... [t]hat was the objective, but somehow there are some people who have been manipulating the system ... when people come and say: ‘But what is the point of working? I can get as much on the dole!’”

Whether you agree with her here or not about benefits, her larger point was true of Western society: she did not say “society does not exist.” What she said was: “who [italics mine] is society? [...] individual men and women.”

Indeed, this premise is the core building block of the Western project.

It is also essentially true of the American project—the fact that “society,” meaning the direction of a community or nation, must be made up from the autonomous wills of individual men and women.

But terms such as “social distancing” (which clearly parallels such Chinese concepts as “social credit score”), along with newly empowered terms such as “public safety” and even “public health,” are being “privileged”—that is to say, given validity and authority—over and above that formerly fundamental Western premise, that society is made up of individuals with rights.

Phrases such as “social distancing,” are predicated, in contrast, on the core beliefs of societies that manage the ordering of movements or behavior of masses of people by compulsion, as they do in China.

The repetition of “social distancing,” “public health,” “public safety” etc., along with the weird little circles on the supermarket floor during 2020-2022 telling you where to stand, as if you were prisoners getting exercise in a prison yard, all served to rewire the Western brain to become accustomed to the concept that we can indeed be told where to go, where to stand, whom to touch, whom to avoid; and that our individual wishes and rights are fungible.

All of this repetition is mind-rewiring that undoes the Western brain’s original wiring toward liberty.

I got into a gentle argument once with a right-on young lady who was speaking with me after I had been forcibly escorted out of a restuarant in Salem, Oregon, because I was unvaccinated. (I found it historically ironic that the restaurant, which would not let me eat alongside the vaccinated diners, had windows plastered with icons of the Black Lives Movement). The young lady accused me, during our back and forth, of centering yourself.

I had never heard that expression before, but it is an important one. It aligns with the Marxist goal of the restructuring of our language: from the Renaissance on, the “self” has been “centered” in the West. This was the great, revolutionary innovation of Western consciousness.

That centering of one’s self has now been turned into a “social” crime.

II. “What I can tell you...” “What I will say”....“Again...” “As I’ve said over and over...”

There is a change in how dialogue is being conducted at a public level. Questions are being dissevered from answers and we are being propagandized that that is ok.

A feature of the Biden era is that the Western notion that in a representative democracy, your elected officials have to answer you, or at least, have to appear to do so, is being demonstrated to be dead. The phrases above form a new set of non-answers that break apart the Western representative-democracy premise that our elected or appointed officials are answerable to us.

These are highly scripted responses that some media trainer in the Biden administration has imposed on every single public spokesperson (these mannerisms seem to be especially warmly embraced by the women).

The phrases manifest along with robotic, NLP-style hand gestures that make the speaker look as if she is repetitively dividing dough with the edge of her hand. They are accompanied by that maddening upward vocal lilt, when the spokesperson is challenged, that sounds exactly like, “Young man, any more sass from you....”

This obnoxiously smug tone of voice and set of mannerisms does not just position the speaker as being superior to the questioner, but they also now indicate to the questioner that the speaker’s accountability is at-will. She or he does not have to give the challenger an answer at all.

Former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, and now her successor Karine Jean-Pierre, use these phrases in response to reporters’ questions, and especially in response to their follow-up questions.

The press secretaries also use the off-putting word “Again...,” before simply repeating what they had said before; or the equally Mom-ish “as I’ve said over and over.”

When these spokespeople are confronted with questions requiring, under normal Western expectations, actual answers, or at least squirmy Clintonesque gestures at answers, the spokeswomen are trained to restate their non-answers until the questioner gives up.

Here, incredibly enough, is Robin Dunn Marcos, Office of Refugee Resettlement Director, stonewalling Rep Andy Biggs in this way, at 46:40—“What I can tell you”—when he asks her about emails sent to staffers whom she manages, raising concerns about hundreds of children in her care who were being trafficked.

You can see the Republicans melting in anguish at the wall of willed obtuseness facing them.

Variations on this non-response are: “What I will say,” “What I will tell you”; as if it is perfectly OK now to pick and choose what answer a public official constructs, to give to a public question.

Karine Jean-Pierre makes use of “What I can tell you” at 0:19 in this clip.

This language practice (and I call it a “language practice” instead of simply a change in language, because it is literally changing the rules of the dance of speech, severing questioning, linguistically, from any prompt to provide an answer) is dividing Republicans and Democrats, especially in public hearings, dramatically.

The Republicans cannot believe how maddeningly childishly the target of their questions is behaving. The repetition of non-answers feels to them like that awful moment all parents will recognize, when 8-year-olds realize they can drive adults crazy (and they realize the power this gives them), by reiterating ad nauseam “No I’m not, you are!” or “Says you!”—or by repeating the adult’s question verbatim, until the kids are finally sent to their rooms.

The trouble is, the Republicans can’t send anyone who is now doing this, to his or her room.

You can watch Republicans devolve in astonishment, writhing with irritation, in hearing after hearing: but they remain balked by the non-answerers. The targets of the questions remain stolidly and shamelessly unmoving in their own commitment to non-meaning.

This refusal to answer in any meaningful way, would not have been allowed to pass, a mere three years ago. “You are not answering the question,” the subjects would have been told, and eventually the question would be answered grudgingly or else the person charged with contempt of Congress. At the very least, the subjects who stonewalled in this way would be torn to bits in the press and the administration that sent them out as front people, would never be re-elected.

But now, no.

Here is Rep. Ayana Pressley insisting to CNN’s Jake Tapper that “The border is secure.” He gives her multiple opportunities to correct what is obviously an arrant fib, but she refuses to take the opportunity to correct an untruth, and insists: “The border is secure.”

This divide has now become not just two groups struggling to communicate; this has now become two completely separate worlds of meaning, two different hermeneutical universes, with utterly different social rules, within one United States of America.

Establishing the baroque non-answer as legitimate, is not trivial. Every time we hear an elected official or government employee, a government spokesperson, or a corporate leader in the cross-hairs facing the press, give a categorical, bald-faced non-answer “answer,” it’s not just that moment that is frustrating. Over time, with repetition, our brains are being worn down; the goal of our enemies is that we eventually will accept the premise that we do not deserve answers.

Questions in public from the public to “officialdom,” or to elites, will soon feel theoretical, cosmetic, or purely rhetorical.

Questions themselves will be drained of the positive social valence that they have had in the West. As in any totalitarian system, we will conclude: why even bother asking?

Sooner or later, these new linguistic practices and structures will indeed rewire our thought processes, so that we will forget that we ever had the expectation of the right to a public answer.

That is the goal. The meta-goal.

III. “I’m/we’re not doing this.” “Cancel culture.” “Speaking with One Voice.” Just leaving the room.

You may have experienced a variation on this new norm in your own personal life, since speech norms from the top of the leadership chain, tend to filter down into everyday life. Have you ever been in a debate with someone on the Left—someone thoughtful, educated, trained in critical thinking—who recently has begun to announce, when he or she has no good answers, “We are not doing this”?

I have. I have literally had people from the Left get up and walk out of the room when he or she ran out of good responses in an ordinary debate.

(A variation on this is the much-discussed “cancel culture”—again, a recent coinage. In the pre-Marxist past, no one would consider that he or she had the option to “cancel,” as opposed to dispute, ignore or contest, someone else’s point of view.)

Until very recently, we understood that the person who stopped debating, who walked away, who gave up on the back and forth—had lost.

Commentator Steve Kirsch has interviewed a whistleblower, Michael Tsai, who was elected to the Milpitas, California school board, and was told that the Board “speaks with one voice”: “we are going to control what you can and cannot say now.” A “mandatory training” was involved. Again, this is a Marxist, collectivist approach. Yet similar coercions and impositions are taking place nationwide. This may explain the shocking experience I had in Chatham, New York, in 2022, when an entire school board got up and walked out when it was asked a direct question by a parent about where certain sums of money had gone.

If people can now simply get up and leave a public, civic debate, with no loss of professional prestige or threat to their job status—and especially if this is true now for our elected officials—we have entered into a post-democratic space in which we can’t ever expect to run down the truth in a public context.

IV: “Call it out.” Karine Jean-Pierre has said, in response to reporting about Hunter Biden, “There has been some irresponsible reporting about the family. And so I've got to call that out here.”

I had never heard the phrase to “call something out” in English, until four or five years ago. Then suddenly the phrase was everywhere, with every liberal sophomore on social media scrambling to “call out” someone before she or he was “called out” in turn, as if in a game of anxious musical chairs.

But to “call someone (or something) out” is a Marxist term, containing a Marxist concept. Rather than “challenging” someone, or “disagreeing” with something, or even “objecting” to something, which positions the critic as an equal among equals—the Western/American premise of how people in a democracy contest one another’s claims—when you “call someone out,” you are holding him or her up censoriously, from a top-down position, for mob condemnation—for “social” ostracism and shaming.

What is this? What? We never had that in America.

What “calling out” is, is prorabotka, a “ritual of public shaming” that was common in post-Soviet society. In schools, universities and workplaces in the former Soviet Union, the transgressor was “called out” to be shamed in public. As Svetlana Stephenson writes in “A Ritual Civil Execution: Public Shaming Meetings in the Post-Stalin Soviet Union”, in The Journal of Applied Social Theory:

“Prorabotka, whose genealogy can be traced to early post-revolutionary years, was aimed at the reinforcement of social norms challenged by political and moral deviance. Public shaming was applied to a wide range of behaviours, including ideological and moral deviations such as public drunkenness, marital infidelity by party members, planned emigration to Israel, etc. The paper [...] shows that, in addition to an official script, the meetings had a supplementary script that unleashed a jouissance [loosely translated, orgasmic or joyful eruption] of punitiveness but also generalised guilt and fear in the face of collective justice.”

What are the keywords in this article about Soviet shaming? “[C]haracter assassination, citizens’ justice, emotionalisation, everyday life in the Soviet Union, informal law, public shaming.”

Do any of these now sound familiar?

V: “Standing with,” internet badges, and simplistic labelled “identities.” All over the internet, people discussing the current geopolitical crisis in the Middle East are either “standing with” Palestine (without defining what that means) or “standing with” Israel (without defining what that means). You can’t “stand with” everyone who is a civilian, it appears, or with “peace.” Those are not options in the dominant language.

Unsurprisingly, the groups “standing with” Palestine are in some places devolving into an injudicious fury at all Israelis, at all of Israel, and in some cases at all Jews, and people “standing with” Israel are painting with a not-identical but to me alarmingly still-too-broad brush, Islam as a whole, or are making generalizations about “all” Muslim countries, or are damning to Hell everyone who lives in Gaza.

The binary, stupid language itself, produced in this way as a blunt object—with Internet “badges” an unhelpful additions to the simplification of “positions”—creates the near-violence and the escalation in hostilities we see erupting worldwide.

If people have a debate or a discussion about their views on the Middle East, as we used to encourage in our educational systems in America and the West, there are a million places of nuance, and maybe thus a million places in which a Venn diagram of reasonable opinion can possibly intersect.

Do you want everyone, both Israel and Palestine, to obey the rule of law and not kill civilians on either side? Do you “support Palestine” defined as, dissolving the post-1948 State of Israel and doing away with its current Jewish inhabitants? Or do you “support Palestine” defined as respecting the autonomy and self-determination of the territories identified under current borders? Does “support for Palestine” mean turning on internet access and allowing deliveries of food and water through, for civilians? Or does it mean “support” for Hamas’ goal of retaking the land now known as Israel, and wiping out the “colonizers?” Does “supporting Israel,” for that matter, mean supporting the wiping out of Gazan civilians? Or does it mean defending Israel’s right to secure its own borders and to counter terrorism within the laws of war? What, for that matter, does it mean to “colonize?” Is that a simple term? Or is it the case that the Ottomans were also “colonizers” in what was known as Palestine, as were the Saracens, Crusaders, Romans et al, all the way back to the days of the Hebrew Bible and before? What of the Canaanites, the Jebusites? Is “colonization” something unique to the current nation of Israel? Or do people, including Muslim nations, do this everywhere throughout history?

And so on.

I am not suggesting there is a “right answer” in the morass of questions above. There isn’t, of course.

I am reminding us all that we used to live in a nation of civil dialogue and debate, and that in the rigors and excitement of dialogue and debate, as it existed pre-2020 (and in some sense until a generation ago), it was the excitement of learning new information and of sharpening our own understanding and positions, that were the points of engaging with language in this way. The complexity of our language in debate at that time, allowed for us to engage with complex realities in sophisticated ways, and to find points of alliance with those with whom we disagreed in other ways.

In contrast, the Newspeak of “standing with,” or badges, and simplistic labelled identities, suppresses debate, and un-persons the person who does not “stand with” you, wherever you have chosen to “stand.” This simplistic language practice also makes us all stupider, as we are learning nothing about the “others’” positions by “standing” wherever we do.

Are we in preschool? Is this Mother May I? If you stand here, does that metaphor imply (yes it does) that you can’t also “stand,” or even tiptoe toward, anywhere else?

Children’s games may work like that, but Western adults’ brains are not supposed to work like that.

Western adult discussion should not work like that. Adults in the West should be able to think with nuance, and not in black and white.

But adults in closed societies, in contrast, are encouraged to think tribally and simplistically, and to shout slogans, and to think in binary terms of “us” and “them.” They are intentionally not taught the skills or values of debate.

So: making us in the West too, and especially in America, stupider and less capable of nuanced thought or of civil discussion is, I would argue, the purpose of introducing linguistic binaries such as “standing with,” “badges,” and for that matter, simplistic “identities.”

People who cannot engage in debate, soon cannot engage in democracy.

I will pick this theme up again in a followup essay. There is a violent, dehumanizing outcome for many, if we head further in this direction, I will show.

I will demonstrate too, I hope, that there is a grave spiritual aspect to this embrace, through language and language practice changes, of non-accountability, collectivism, stupidity and lies.

Words have, in our Western tradition, always been sacred. They are meant to be vessels with which to seek the truth, rather than used as means to abandon it.

As John 1 explains:

“1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

2 The same was in the beginning with God.

3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”

There is a reason that the most free societies boast the most glorious literary traditions. This is not an accident.

When language abandons the intention of truth, as critics from Franz Kafka to George Orwell knew, totalitarian evil flourishes, literature desiccates into state-approved cliche, and societies collapse into corruption.

Leviticus 19:11:

Ye shall not steal, neither deal falsely, neither lie one to another.”

Lying—the abuse of language—is not trivial. It is a violation of our task on this earth.

What happens to our nation—to our young people and their mental health—to freedom itself—when words are deliberately drained of the possibility of even gesturing toward the truth?

How can our status as a “city on a hill”—possibly survive?