The Progressive Dictionary of Received Ideas

Abortion: Refer to as “choice.” Women should always have a right to this.

Anti-Communism: Always couple this term with “hysteria.”

Arms Race: Speak in superior tones about “apes on a treadmill.”

Arts: Should be supported by the government.

Assassin: All corporations have at lease one of these on the payroll.

Bedroom: The governement should stay out of it.

Bush: The worst president in the history of the country. “Chimpy.”

Canada: Threaten to emigrate there when a Republican is elected president. Tell people you pretend you’re Canadian when traveling abroad.

Carter: Our greatest ex-president.

Christian: Hypocrites. Always trying to establish a theocracy.

Clinton: Impeached for lying about sex.

Cold War: Unnecessary. Expensive. Reagan had nothing to do with ending it.

Communism: Has never really been tried. We were in inordinate fear of it.

Constitution: Must be a living document.

Defense: Its budget is always bloated.

Dissent: The highest form of patriotism.

Eisenhower: Lazy. Presided over the conformist 1950’s.

Europeans: Wiser than Americans. When criticizing the US, always preface it with “My European friends ask me…”

Fascism: What the country is threatened with in a Republican administration.

Ford, Gerald: Klutz. “Whip inflation now.”

Fox News: “Don’t you mean ‘Faux Noise?’ Ha! Ha!”

France: The country we ought to emulate.

Global Warming: A settled science. We only have a few years to act. Anyone who doubts it is in the pay of oil companies. Caused by suburban Republicans driving SUVs.

Health Care: A fundamental right.

Hiroshima: Unnecessary war crime. Japan was ready to surrender anyway.

Hoover: The worst president in the history of the country. Did nothing about the Depression.

Iraq: The greatest foreign policy disaster in the nation’s history.

Israel: Has too much sway in Washington. Should be boycotted.

Journalists: If it wasn’t for them, we’d be living in a dictatorship. Comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.

KKK: See “Republican.” Be sure to refer to “AmeriKKKa.”

Mainstream: The editorial policy of the New York Times.

Mass Transit: Gasoline taxes should be raised to pay for it.

McCarthy: Defined the darkest era in our history. Be sure to say, “Have you no decency, sir?” when mentioning his name.

Media: Preface with “corporate-controlled.”

NASCAR: Let your voice drip with contempt when pronouncing it.

National Anthem: Unsingable. Celebrates bombs and violence. Stay seated while it’s played.

New York Times: The exemplar of a great newspaper.

Nixon: The worst president in the history of the country. Proudly claim you were on his enemies list.

Oil Companies: Gouge the consumer. Earn obscene profits. Bought up all the patents for clean energy and buried them.

Palin: Quitter. Stupid. Creationist. Anti-intellectual. Unqualified.

Patriotism: Always mindless when it’s not jingoistic.

Poor: The Republicans make war on them.

Reagan: The worst president in the history of the country. “Ronald Raygun.” Be sure to mention “Bedtime for Bonzo” when his name comes up.

Republican: The stupid party. The party of greed. Stole the 2000 election. Say “Rethuglican” or “Repiglican” instead.

Right Wing: Always say “reich wing.” Preface with “far” or “extreme.”

Roe v. Wade: Sacrosanct. Always under threat. If it’s repealed, no woman can choose.

Schools: It will be a great day when our schools have all the money they need and the government will have to hold a bake sale to buy bombs.

Second Amendment: Should be repealed. Only applies to militias.

Soldiers: Commit atrocities when they’re not victims of their own government.

Tax Cuts: Only go to the rich. Cost the government money.

Taxes: The price we pay for civilization. The rich do no pay enough of them.

Vietnam: An unwinnable war.

War Crime: Military action by the United States or Israel.

Zionism: When accused of anti-Semitism, always say, “I’m not anti-Semitic, only anti-Zionist.”

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