Orwellian Phrase of the Week

Which sayings are true, and which ones just sound nice?

Pictured above: A tool of defense. 


Today is the 64th anniversary of the publication of George Orwell's masterpiece, 1984. Here's hoping that in the case of this particular novel, life stops imitating art. In celebration of the anniversary, The Proverbial Skeptic is proud to announce a new weekly feature, The Orwellian Phrase of the Week.

In it, The Proverbial Skeptic will pause its normal business of taking apart whole sayings and pay a little tribute to the Public Relations people, Consultants, Advertisers, Lobbyists and Politicians who take time from their busy days to make our lives a little more Orwellian by renaming just words and phrases. Thanks, guys! Keep it up!

This week's lucky winner is "The Department of Defense".

An intellectual forebear to "The Patriot Act", this phrase names the military cabinet seat in the executive branch of the U.S. Government and has done so since 1949. Before then, the position was filled by the much less propagandist "The Department of War", but that failed to present America's military policy as appropriately isolationist.

As everyone knows, America has never been prone to unprovoked or incommensurate acts of war, and has never failed to enter a war when it should have. 

So thanks, "The Department of Defense", and remember, kids, we were always at war with Eurasia!

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