UKC

Why is Johnsons Language so Bizarre?

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I'm really getting pi$$ed off with this - not only is Johnsons whole use of language just wrong, he seems to be insisting all his cabinet do the same. Or are they just all equally dim?

Johnson is supposed to be a journalist, good with words. So why does he describe the Covid plan as a 'roadmap'?  It's just a wrong metaphor - a roadmap shows you how to get to a specific destination via a variety of different routes - Johnson is proposing an unclear future objective with a single path to get there. And what's this about 'irreversible' - 'a cautious but irreversible approach.' I don't even know what he's trying to say here and neither, I suspect, does he. Does he mean that if we take a cautious step, and it proves to be wrong, we can't reverse it? Why? Who says so?

This matters, because of two reasons. I think this reliance on inappropriate language and metaphors is  reflection of how poorly he understands the situation and science he is dealing with. (Remember 'whack-a-mole'?) And secondly, however poorly he understands  situation, he is being either accidentally or deliberately bl*ddy dreadful at communicating, which actually should be his main job.

It was the same during the Brexit campaigns, but we know why that was the case, they were just lying and covering it up. I have no idea what his excuse is this time round. 

 wercat 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

it's as strange and inexplicable as his insistence over and over again on the exercise restriction being "One form of exercise per day"

perhaps it is a programming error ...

Post edited at 12:51
 marsbar 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Did he actually say something like the crocus of hope is poking through?  I can't tell news from satire anymore.  

In reply to marsbar:

> Did he actually say something like the crocus of hope is poking through?  I can't tell news from satire anymore.  

I believe so. Poking through the frost. Just made me think of poor January Jones as Emma Frost in X-Men: First Class, and Rosamund Pike as Miranda Frost in Die Another Day. 

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I'm more hacked off by the absolutely inane and stupid questions from the media at the press briefings than Johnsons "first crocus poking through the frost" witterings.

"Prime Minister, does this mean you're a gloomy guts" (or something similar, as I was too busy ranting at the TV) was one moronic example from yesterday.

 Al Randall 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I think it's his clumsy attempt to communicate with ordinary people who haven't been to Eton and Oxbridge but in reality it simply makes him look like an out of touch buffoon, which he possibly is.

Al

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

"Roadmap" in the context he's using it is an Americanism and a piece of business speak*.  It's usual in IT (which can be very Americanised) to talk of a "product roadmap" describing a sequential set of dates on which product features will be released, which is in the manner of what he is doing.  So I wouldn't say it's wrong, but it might be unfamiliar usage to those who haven't had much involvement with American business.

OTOH, talking of setting criteria rather then dates and then coming out with a load of dates is silly.  I had been expecting something like "When cases are below 1000 and no hospital has intensive care occupancy above N% with COVID patients, X will happen", which is what we very much need - not only because that's more honest than a load of dates, but also because that encourages everyone to work towards that goal by complying with the lockdown, as behaving yourself and encouraging others to do so directly drives how quickly the releases will happen.

* With him having used that I'm genuinely surprised he didn't come out with something like "leverage vaccines to enable reduced restrictions", which would have had me throwing the remote at the telly, but he hasn't gone that far yet

Post edited at 13:06
 Myfyr Tomos 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

When I read "irreversible", Hinterstoisser and Kurz immediately spring to mind. 

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I've said this before now in a post about his "oven ready deal's" and "menu" of options for lockdown last year.

CT

 Brownie 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

It would be almost understandable for someone to behave as he does if it was unintentional idiocy. But it appears it may be his pre-intentioned plan to swan effortlessly through life without making any real effort to do anything properly at all, which is unforgivable.

article by Jeremy Vine ( sorry to link to the daily mail

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/columnists/article-7147799/JEREMY-VINE-reveals-saw-Boris-make-shambolic-speech-bring-house-down.html

 65 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Al Randall:

I have met many out of touch buffoons from the less advantaged end of society who think Johnson is a major intellectual because of the way he uses language. I had an argument with a well know climber on FB who opined that Johnson would be great PM "because he speaks 5 languages." I'm vaguely intrigued as to what these languages are. English barely counts in his case.   

A high/low point was Johnson's use of "eventuated" rather than "happened" while squirming out of a grilling by Eddie Mair regarding his provision of a journalist's address to his friend Darius Guppy so that Guppy could have said journalist assaulted. 

 Andy Hardy 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I think the phrase that applies is "plausible deniability"

In reply to Ridge:

Jeez. What next, the turtle head of hope is poking out of the hole?

 Jim Lancs 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Neil Williams:

> . . .  but he hasn't gone that far yet

I applaud your self control.

In reply to 65:

> A high/low point was Johnson's use of "eventuated" rather than "happened" while squirming out of a grilling by Eddie Mair regarding his provision of a journalist's address to his friend Darius Guppy so that Guppy could have said journalist assaulted. 

That's also business speak, like "pre-prepared" (which is a tautology) and other similar unnecessary use of long words when a shorter one is fine.  "Leverage" is a classic because in most cases "use" or "re-use" can directly replace it.

 deepsoup 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Alkis:

> Jeez. What next, the turtle head of hope is poking out of the hole?

Ha ha.  Yes folks, it's been a difficult year but we're finally on the brink of touching the cloth of a brighter future!

 Maggot 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

You still actually watch and listen to him?  I leave the room now whenever the goon appears on TV.
I used to be a regular watcher on Question Time and the like, gave up on those for over a year now.  I've got better things to do than listen to the same old bullshit over and over and over a frigging gain.

 jkarran 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Irreversible is supposed to convey seriousness and trigger optimism that we're on a one way journey to better. Given a moment's thought it does neither but that's one more moment than most will waste on his blathering. It's weird but I guess it works in focus groups.

jk

 jkarran 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Al Randall:

> I think it's his clumsy attempt to communicate with ordinary people who haven't been to Eton and Oxbridge but in reality it simply makes him look like an out of touch buffoon, which he possibly is.

Out of touch buffoon is his shtick, the reality it hides is worse.

jk

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

He's full of sh*t. 

The septic tank is full and you're left with partially digested crap that's oozing out of every crack.

His forte is speaking in front of a large crowd of similarly minded people who can help cheer him on whilst he makes either wildly optimistic claims. Serious briefings with specifics clearly pain him, you can see it in his face as he knows going off script will be called out and had real life consequences, it's just not as fun as a rousing House of Commons speech with the Bullingdon Club egging you on.

He has confessed he's neither a details or a numbers man (e.g. the proposed Boris island airport shouldn't cause any environmental issues and unable recall how many children he has...).

For a man who shook hands with everyone on a covid ward and then almost died from it you would think he'd sharpen up a little on message delivery. 

In reply to jkarran:

Interestingly I have 13 dislikes so far but no one has come to his defence, does that mean the dis-likers don't like my post but can't be bothered to argue, or that  they agree that Johnson is an inarticulate clown and they don't like him. 

In reply to Neil Williams:

> "Roadmap" in the context he's using it is an Americanism and a piece of business speak*.  It's usual in IT (which can be very Americanised) to talk of a "product roadmap" describing a sequential set of dates on which product features will be released, which is in the manner of what he is doing.  So I wouldn't say it's wrong, but it might be unfamiliar usage to those who haven't had much involvement with American business.

Exactly this. It's not the language of Eton and Oxford but that of a SPAD with an MBA.

That said, we use it all the time at work. 

In reply to Dave Garnett:

> Exactly this. It's not the language of Eton and Oxford but that of a SPAD with an MBA.

> That said, we use it all the time at work. 

I got berated recently, by an American project manager, because I referred to a possible impediment in the project plan. I was informed that it was actually a roadblock in the roadmap.

... I keep forgetting to mention this episode to my mate Stuttering Steve, who suffers from a speech roadblock.

In reply to Dave Garnett:

> Exactly this. It's not the language of Eton and Oxford but that of a SPAD with an MBA.

Yes, very true, he's probably been told to say it.

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Sadly, Johnson has the diabolic gift of hitting on phrases that resonate with very significant numbers of people. I've been very disappointed with his rhetoric, but Guardian-reading ex-English teachers are hardly his intended audience. I've read (some of) his book on Churchill -it's shite, but you wouldn't know that from many of the reviews.

He has an evil genius for popularity. He's probably back in the lead in the latest polls. In the end, that's all that matters to most politicians, and that's where his talent is. Those of us on the left underestimate it at our great peril - and there's a whole lot of underestimating going on in this thread.

Post edited at 14:42
In reply to Andy Clarke:

Like Trump, it's hard to see what he could have to be caught red-handed doing to dent his appeal. I can only think that paedophilia might do it, but as he's obviously uncomfortable around children thankfully that's unlikely. 

 Flinticus 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Maggot:

> You still actually watch and listen to him?  I leave the room now whenever the goon appears on TV.

It's easier just to change channel. That's what I do, rather than leverage myself off my beanbag and leave the only warm room in the house.

 wintertree 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Neil Williams:

> "Roadmap" in the context he's using it is an Americanism and a piece of business speak*.  It's usual in IT (which can be very Americanised) to talk of a "product roadmap" describing a sequential set of dates on which product features will be released, which is in the manner of what he is doing.  So I wouldn't say it's wrong, but it might be unfamiliar usage to those who haven't had much involvement with American business.

In that view, I think we’ve moved from alpha testing the covid response to beta testing...

In reply to wintertree:

> In that view, I think we’ve moved from alpha testing the covid response to beta testing...

:D :D :D

(If you didn't laugh you'd cry...)

In reply to Myfyr Tomos:

"To go on was impossible but to retreat was unthinkable."

This may have been in the satirical 'Ascent of Rum Doodle'.

 kaiser 23 Feb 2021

> I'm really getting pi$$ed off with this

Whining about someone else's use of language and the OP resorts to swearing in the first line.

Says it all really

In reply to kaiser:

> Whining about someone else's use of language and the OP resorts to swearing in the first line.

Context.

> Says it all really.

No.

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

He does it on purpose to annoy people like you.

In reply to Darren Jackson:

> I got berated recently, by an American project manager, because I referred to a possible impediment in the project plan.

Jesus, you didn't did you?  You'll be saying there's a problem next.  They're challenges, man, opportunities to excel, and performance differentiators.

 Yanis Nayu 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Yep, it’s a plan, not a roadmap FFS. And given Johnson has a hand in it, it’s probably a shit one. 

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Why is his language so bizarre? It could just be that he is having a bad hair day, everyday - at least, it appears that way. Maybe that's affecting his language. 

 andyman666999 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

It's pretty obvious the reason why. Because he's really f*cking stupid. 

In reply to andyman666999:

> It's pretty obvious the reason why. Because he's really f*cking stupid. 

I think that's more dangerous underestimation. Stupid doesn't get you a 2:1 from Oxford, whatever people on here might like to believe.

In reply to Andy Clarke:

Ah, a 2:1. A gentleman's degree.

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> Ah, a 2:1. A gentleman's degree.

Precisely. Who wants a swotty first?

In reply to Darren Jackson:

Surely it would have to be a roadblock ON the roadmap? Or a roadblock marked on a roadmap? 

 seankenny 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

> I think that's more dangerous underestimation. Stupid doesn't get you a 2:1 from Oxford, whatever people on here might like to believe.


In recent years we've seen plenty of alumni of elite educational and professional institutions make some really, really dumb errors, and formulate really, really stupid policies. How do you square this with your sentiments above?

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Three ideas:

1. He uses a blend of Etonian and with references to the Greek Classics to make himself look clever. 

2. He uses Olde English to come across as quintessentially English and endear himself to the people who don’t like the EU - he’s claiming our language back

3. Some of the above isn’t planned, he just spouts it out coz he’s an upper class twit.

Gut feeling - there are more people like his use of language than don’t. I’d get used to it coz we will hear tonnes more of it over the next few years. 

In reply to seankenny:

> In recent years we've seen plenty of alumni of elite educational and professional institutions make some really, really dumb errors, and formulate really, really stupid policies. How do you square this with your sentiments above?

I expect I'll attribute most of them to low morals rather than low IQ. Woefully short-sighted environmental policies might look stupid to some, but I assume they're calculated selfishness and uncaring greed.

 pec 23 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> Interestingly I have 13 dislikes so far but no one has come to his defence, does that mean the dis-likers don't like my post but can't be bothered to argue, or that  they agree that Johnson is an inarticulate clown and they don't like him. 


It's because they can't be arsed to argue with you, (and it's now 30 dislikes).

In response to your OP. You need to get a life, if Boris pisses you off so much stop listening to him and then we wouldn't have to endure the endless deluge of pointless 'Boris said this' and 'Boris said that' threads that swamp this forum.

If you carry on at this rate your head will explode before the next general election. Still, at least that will stop your head exploding the morning after it.

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> Ah, a 2:1. A gentleman's degree.

A drinker's First, no?

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Whatever the reason for his affected appearance, manner and language (and however annoying they may be), more important is to remember that underneath it all he is, to quote Eddie Mair, 'a nasty piece of work'.

 Mark Bannan 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

As I just assume that he is talking out his backside, the sounds emanating from him don't seem bizarre at all to me.

 henwardian 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

It's a tricky time and many people are worried. It probably goes down better for the PM when people listen to him and get a vaguely positive fuzzy picture of the future rather than an angular and deeply uncertain one.

Or maybe after a couple of years of him PM we have forgotten that his style has always been that of a clown.

Or maybe the people chose him specifically because as a nation we don't want to hear the hard, honest truth. that's certainly always been a serious flaw in the human race and I suspect always will be.

 Thunderbird7 24 Feb 2021
In reply to kaiser:

No it doesn't - he missed out "bell end"

 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to pec:

> It's because they can't be arsed to argue with you, (and it's now 30 dislikes).

> In response to your OP. You need to get a life, if Boris pisses you off so much stop listening to him and then we wouldn't have to endure the endless deluge of pointless 'Boris said this' and 'Boris said that' threads that swamp this forum.

> If you carry on at this rate your head will explode before the next general election. Still, at least that will stop your head exploding the morning after it.

Hahaha...Boris is a total cretin, of that I have no doubt....but some of the criticism of him is so OTT I actually find myself defending him at times....and I hate him. 

Moaning about the use of the word Roadmap is one such example.....i mean who honestly really cares that he didn't use the word 'plan'... Ffs. 

 Hat Dude 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

> I think that's more dangerous underestimation. Stupid doesn't get you a 2:1 from Oxford, whatever people on here might like to believe.

Stupidity has very little to do with academic achievement

In reply to Hat Dude:

> Stupidity has very little to do with academic achievement

Having spent many years in education I know there's a strong correlation between high academic achievement and high IQ. My school worked closely with Mensa for a while and at one time held the useful local headline-grabbing record for Mensa membership. So I'm prepared to bet my own money that Boris has a reasonably high IQ. Would you regard an IQ of eg 120+ as compatible with stupidity?

 pec 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

Exactly, some people need to get a life and find something real to moan about.

In reply to pec:

Being governed incompetently, immorally and illegally seems real enough. But I suppose as long as people like you let themselves be deceived and just go along, it's going to be difficult to change.

In reply to Blunderbuss:

> Hahaha...Boris is a total cretin

Back when I started teaching, this term was still occasionally used in its technical sense, by old sweats who refused to step on the euphemism treadmill. Other old favourites were idiot (IQ -20), imbecile (21-50) and moron (51-70). All numbers approximate as it was a long time ago.

 Hat Dude 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

Stupidity does not necessarily mean a lack of academic achievement

Highly intelligent people can still do incredibly stupid things!

In reply to Andy Clarke:

> Back when I started teaching, this term was still occasionally used in its technical sense, by old sweats who refused to step on the euphemism treadmill. 

Actually its original technical meaning was someone with the signs of congenital hypothyroidism - not just intellectual impairment but goitre, shortness of stature and other physical abnormalities.  Because the commonest cause of was insufficient iodine in the diet, and this tended to occur in certain areas (often rural upland areas like the Alps and Peak District) I suspect the word became a term of abuse for slow witted, especially rural, children more generally.      

 andyman666999 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

Maybe it is an underestimation. BUT he got a scholarship for academic achievement - what were his entrance grades. Reeks of elitism. Just like Prince Charlie's C and D to get in. But of course entrance requirements are only for plebs like me .  A 2.1 in classics wow. Interesting that's all he could manage when his 'school' costs £15k a year oh and Cameron managed a first.  Again call me a cynic but I wonder how much it cost his family to buy. 

As someone else said intelligence does not equate to academic achievement. Not that I put much stock in his. By far what is worse is that he is unethical, immoral and corrupt. Makes you wonder whether it would have been better to not bipap/ventilate him on ITU. Elitist tw*t that he is. 

Post edited at 11:45
 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

> Back when I started teaching, this term was still occasionally used in its technical sense, by old sweats who refused to step on the euphemism treadmill. Other old favourites were idiot (IQ -20), imbecile (21-50) and moron (51-70). All numbers approximate as it was a long time ago.

I use it as an alternative to the other c word when the audience for that is not appropriate

 wercat 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

More importantly than IQ I think he has a very low HQ  (Honesty Quotient) and iQ  (integrity Quotient)!

In reply to Dave Garnett:

> Actually its original technical meaning was someone with the signs of congenital hypothyroidism - not just intellectual impairment but goitre, shortness of stature and other physical abnormalities.  Because the commonest cause of was insufficient iodine in the diet, and this tended to occur in certain areas (often rural upland areas like the Alps and Peak District) I suspect the word became a term of abuse for slow witted, especially rural, children more generally.      

Yes, I remember the usage. I find it interesting that some (speculative) etymology suggests it might have come from "Christian." Boris the Holy Fool?

In reply to andyman666999:

> Maybe it is an underestimation. BUT he got a scholarship for academic achievement - what were his entrance grades. Reeks of elitism. Just like Prince Charlie's C and D to get in. But of course entrance requirements are only for plebs like me .  A 2.1 in classics wow. Interesting that's all he could manage when his 'school' costs £15k a year oh and Cameron managed a first.  Again call me a cyniic but I wonder how much it cost his family to buy. 

> As someone else said intelligence does not equate to academic achievement. Not that I put much stock in his. By far what is worse is that he is unethical, immoral and corrupt. Makes you wonder whether it would have been better to not bipap/ventilate him on ITU. Elitist tw*t that he is. 

I'm a pleb who went to a posh uni and all the toffs I knew had had to get the same grades as me to get in. You need to be royal or a potential major league benefactor to get round this. (I assume Toby Young is the exception that proves the rule!) I can't imagine the Johnsons had the sort of money to turn an Oxford Master's head. If you think an Oxbridge 2:1 in Classics is easy to get you've been misinformed. As I understand it, Boris was very jealous of Call Me Dave's first.

Having said all that, I agree with you completely  about his character. I just wish people would focus on this, rather than deluding themselves about how smart he is. In my view he made bad lockdown decisions because he places much too low a value on ordinary people's lives, not because he couldn't do the math.

In reply to andyman666999:

> Maybe it is an underestimation. BUT he got a scholarship for academic achievement - what were his entrance grades. Reeks of elitism. Just like Prince Charlie's C and D to get in. But of course entrance requirements are only for plebs like me .   

It's tempting to mention Balliol too... but actually, in my experience, Balliol is more meritocratic than its reputation suggests.  

 andyman666999 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

I'm glad you agree with me about his character. Thankyou for your validation. However everything else is your anecdotal experiences and is slightly patronising. 

I haven't found any evidence online of his grades. Or anything to validate "a scholarship" - if you can afford £15k/yr on eton do you deserve a scholarship? I don't really care if it's difficult to get a 2.1 in classics. I'm a medic. I risk criticism here but i don't particularly see the benefit in it. I mean currently would you spend £9k/yr on a 4 year degree that doesn't particularly qualify you for anything? Probs different back in the 80s when you were getting grants.  I mean all that philosophy and he's still as bent as £9 note so what's the point. 

If you're rich, you can afford lots of extra curricular tutorship and can attend a better school. You have to still turn up but essentially you're buying a result.

 andyman666999 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Andy Clarke:

You'll have to forgive me. Psychologically I'm at a very very low ebb. You're probably right in many ways. However, I hate the man, his party, Oxbridge, Eton and everything they stand for. Meritocracy and upward mobility makes me laugh. What utter BS. 

Anyway sorry. Gonna stop posting as am being very toxic and hijacking the thread. 

Post edited at 15:53
In reply to Andy Clarke:

> As I understand it, Boris was very jealous of Call Me Dave's first.

His little brother got one too, which is less surprising.

 Tringa 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> I'm really getting pi$$ed off with this - not only is Johnsons whole use of language just wrong, he seems to be insisting all his cabinet do the same. Or are they just all equally dim?

> Johnson is supposed to be a journalist, good with words. So why does he describe the Covid plan as a 'roadmap'?  It's just a wrong metaphor - a roadmap shows you how to get to a specific destination via a variety of different routes - Johnson is proposing an unclear future objective with a single path to get there. And what's this about 'irreversible' - 'a cautious but irreversible approach.' I don't even know what he's trying to say here and neither, I suspect, does he. Does he mean that if we take a cautious step, and it proves to be wrong, we can't reverse it? Why? Who says so?

> This matters, because of two reasons. I think this reliance on inappropriate language and metaphors is  reflection of how poorly he understands the situation and science he is dealing with. (Remember 'whack-a-mole'?) And secondly, however poorly he understands  situation, he is being either accidentally or deliberately bl*ddy dreadful at communicating, which actually should be his main job.

> It was the same during the Brexit campaigns, but we know why that was the case, they were just lying and covering it up. I have no idea what his excuse is this time round. 

I agree. I think it is largely his lack of understanding and also what appears to be his desire to come out with, in his view(or that of number 10 speech writers), a clever sounding phrase. He is not a good communicator of complex issues in a concise way - never use 5 words if you can get away with using 20.

It is always good to hear interviews on the new with the likes of Jason Leitch and Chris Smith for a straightforward assessment of the situation.

Dave

In reply to andyman666999:

> You'll have to forgive me. Psychologically I'm at a very very low ebb. You're probably right in many ways. However, I hate the man, his party, Oxbridge, Eton and everything they stand for. Meritocracy and upward mobility makes me laugh. What utter BS. 

> Anyway sorry. Gonna stop posting as am being very toxic and hijacking the thread. 

No problem. Being a medic at this time must be very hard indeed. Hope things start looking up for you soonest. All the best.

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

> but some of the criticism of him is so OTT I actually find myself defending him at times....and I hate him. 

Although I don’t always think the criteria you defend him by, nor your personal attacks on the character of those who disagree with you are correct nor justified, respectively.

 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to wintertree:

> > but some of the criticism of him is so OTT I actually find myself defending him at times....and I hate him. 

> Although I don’t always think the criteria you defend him by, nor your personal attacks on the character of those who disagree with you are correct nor justified, respectively.

Perfectly justified as I explained in detail to you and over and over again you provided nothing to justify your criticism of him on the specific point being discussed ....and if you think I attacked your character in that previous exchange you must be a little sensitive.

You can answer the question you dodged now if you wish....where in that letter from 14th March does it state we should lock the country down immediately....just provide the same exact text that explicitly states this,  no waffle please. 

 pec 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> Being governed incompetently, immorally and illegally seems real enough. But I suppose as long as people like you let themselves be deceived and just go along, it's going to be difficult to change.


You seem to have completely missed my point. If that's what you think of Boris then fine, I don't care and I'm not going to try and persuade you otherwise. But starting a new thread because he said 'roadmap' and then extrapolating from that to deduce he's not fit to be PM makes you look like a lunatic, even to many people who also think he's not fit to be PM.

At any given time there are usually about five 'Boris is a c***' threads running on here, mostly on the basis of something similarly trivial. Apart from a small coterie of deluded lefties, nobody cares about this trivia so they stop listening to you. And then when Boris does something genuinely bad the people you need to win over assume you're just off on another pointless rant and still aren't listening.

Multiply this effect across all social media and maybe you start to see why Boris retains his popularity, but then again maybe you don't. In which case carry on as you are but don't be surprised when Boris wins the next election.

 pec 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Dave Garnett:

> Actually its original technical meaning was someone with the signs of congenital hypothyroidism - not just intellectual impairment but goitre, shortness of stature and other physical abnormalities.  Because the commonest cause of was insufficient iodine in the diet, and this tended to occur in certain areas (often rural upland areas like the Alps and Peak District) I suspect the word became a term of abuse for slow witted, especially rural, children more generally.      


I seem to recall that Whymper devoted a whole chapter of his book 'Scrambles in the Alps' to a rambling discourse on the high incidence of cretinism (and goitres) in the Aosta valley.

 dovebiker 24 Feb 2021

"Plan" would be inappropriate as there are multiple opportunities for U-turns on Roadmaps!

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

> Perfectly justified as I explained in detail

In your opinion.  It is clear we differed in opinion, and I respected that and didn't start calling you unreasonable our making other personal attacks (however moderate.)

3 other posters I think chimed in with agreement with me over reading some of the documents I produced and your consistent misrepresentation of my opinion. 0 other posters chimed in as agreeing with you.  So, I have reason to believe my position was reasonable.  Yours was reasonable.  Disagreement can exist between reasonable opinions.

> to you and over and over again

Likewise me to you, but you'd write off most of what I said when it didn't agree with your position.

> you provided nothing to justify your criticism of him on the specific point being discussed

Except for all the things you would write off by your oddly specific requirements that I never alluded to or mentioned, but that you tried to impose on my position.

> ....and if you think I attacked your character in that previous exchange you must be a little sensitive.

I'm making the point that you were at several points offensive to various posters, myself included.  It didn't upset me - so I am not so sensitive.  

I will restate my position. I look forwards to you misrepresenting it as an absurdly reduced straw man once again. We locked down two weeks too late in the UK.  This is a result of actions that happened years, months and weeks before.Â

>you provided nothing to justify your criticism of him 

You see - you are severely misunderstanding what I wrote.  I never criticised the PM. I'm not sure I ever mentioned Johnson.  My post that you had such a problem with said - in response to you saying we locked down a week too late:

I think it's pretty clear that we locked down two weeks too late.  Perhaps we were closer to one week behind comparator nations, but those are two different statements.

Please do show me where I criticised Boris Johnson specifically.  Looking back you did seem to be on a specific mission to defend Johnson.  I was very clear in the exchange that the problem was far more systemic than that including the decades long structural issues in the intersection of the scientific community and government, SAGE and wider government issues.  Yet you ignore all of that and reduce my complex, multi-layered, multi-timescale perspective to an attack on the PM at a specific moment, from which you gallantly defend him.  

Bizarre.

 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to wintertree:

No answer to the question again... 

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

> No answer to the question again... 

As it’s a question of no relevance to my point, and as I’ve given you my answer in details, and as others have given their take on the documents informing my answers (in agreement with me), and as you write it all off, no nothing to add.  But you have my answer.  
 

What reasonable person thinks your question:

> where in that letter from 14th March does it state we should lock the country down immediately....just provide the same exact text that explicitly states this,  no waffle please. 

Is in any way related to my statements that:

> I think it's pretty clear that we locked down two weeks too late.  Perhaps we were closer to one week behind comparator nations, but those are two different statements.

and repeated many times that:

> This is a result of actions that happened years, months and weeks before

You have failed to show how your question is of relevance to these points - indeed how it can possibly be of relevance to the second point.

You have failed to show how I ever criticised Johnson in this despite your claim  “you provided nothing to justify your criticism of him”.  How can I justify a criticism I never made?   I can’t.  You set me an impossible task.

Post edited at 19:27
In reply to pec:

> I seem to recall that Whymper devoted a whole chapter of his book 'Scrambles in the Alps' to a rambling discourse on the high incidence of cretinism (and goitres) in the Aosta valley.

He discourses on how prized the goitre was as it granted exemption from military service, leading some parents to refuse to have their children treated with iodine. Apparently, it was as highly valued by some as bone spurs are in the modern age.

 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to wintertree:

Of course it's of relevance!

You cited a letter published on the 14th that didn't even call for a lockdown as some sort of 'proof' the government messed up by not locking down 5 days earlier!!!!!....remember I was defending them in light of the advice received both from SAGE and complete lack of calls outside of SAGE for a stay at home order to be issude in the days leading up until the 9th.

Anyhow as I have asked you 4 times to show me where that letter asks for a lockdown and 4 times you have refused to answer I have think we can safely assume it doesn't and is therefore completely irrelevant to your argument... 

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

So you’re not going to show where I criticised Johnson, or how your question has any relevance to my point that the reasons we locked down two weeks to late arose weeks, months and years before that time?

Where did I criticise Johnson?  If you have been trying to defend him against a criticism I never made it seems like a fools errand, as nothing I can possibly say can defend a criticism I never made.

 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to wintertree:

Semantics between Johnson and the government....

Why did you reply to me tonight in response to me defending Johnson with you saying it was sometimes unjustified if you weren't referring to our discussion the other day? 

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

> Semantics between Johnson and the government....

No, not semantics.  There is a clear difference between the PM and the government, and as comments from me on that thread and this one make clear, I was *not* blaming the government let alone a specific government at a specific point in time.

> Why did you reply to me tonight in response to me defending Johnson with you saying it was sometimes unjustified if you weren't referring to our discussion the other day? 

Because the penny dropped that you apparently felt motivated to defend Johnson, and how I viewed our last thread turned a corner and I realised you felt yourself to be defending someone I had never criticised, despite my having made it clear I see problems going back to before Johnson was PM and indeed to before he was even in government.

 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to wintertree:

My comment today about OTT criticism of BJ had nothing to do with our exchange...

In reply to pec: I think you're being particularly aggressive about what you think the content of my OP was rather than the actuality.

As per the OP, I'm interested in how Johnson - with his background and education - can use language so badly. as though he's not even a native English speaker.  And metaphors matter - if he thinks dealing with a pandemic is equivalent to playing whack-a-mole, or there can be an 'irreversible roadmap' dealing with something so complex, then he's wrong. It will inform his decision making. It will cost us all.

Now, if you don't think that's interesting, fine, but other people do, so if you don't want to engage why not just STFU and spend your time on threads you do find interesting?

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

> My comment today about OTT criticism of BJ had nothing to do with our exchange...

You're changing your tune.  You at 18:40 today given your take on our previous thread: "Perfectly justified as I explained in detail to you and over and over again you provided nothing to justify your criticism of him" [Johnson] "on the specific point being discussed ."

Make your mind up.

You've since claimed "Semantics between Johnson and the government...."

  1. To repeat myself from the previous thread:We locked down two weeks too late in the UK.  This is a result of actions that happened years, months and weeks before.  Taking this as a criticism of "the government" is not justified by what I said, doubly so taking it as a criticism of Johnson.
  2. In terms of you suggesting Johnson and the government are interchangeable, as you previously said to me, "Dont ever become a lawyer!" 
 Blunderbuss 24 Feb 2021
In reply to wintertree:

Jesus Christ, you are really spoiling for an argument! ....how else was I supposed to take you replying to me reference criticism of Johnson unless I thought you were referring to our exchange....that's why I made my initial reply to you. 

My comment on OTT criticism of him covers all sorts of stuff I hear... 

Anyway this is truly boring so have the last word of you want... 

 wintertree 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Blunderbuss:

> Jesus Christ, you are really spoiling for an argument! ...

Moi?

> how else was I supposed to take you replying to me reference criticism of Johnson unless I thought you were referring to our exchange

Well, it was illuminating, that's for sure.  Your further clarifications make it clear you were taking my comments as a criticism of Johnson and the specific government at the specific time despite my oft repeated comment "This is a result of actions that happened years, months and weeks before".

> Anyway this is truly boring so have the last word of you want... 

I believe you this time, I really do.

 pec 24 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

STFU indeed! Seems like I've rattled your cage haha.

In reply to pec:

Dream on.

 Martin Hore 25 Feb 2021
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Just tried to read this thread.

May I suggest the following definitions:

"Blunderbuss" = an irresistible force

"wintertree" (any large tree really) = an immovable object.

Martin.


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