Tag Archives: Nick Cohen

Euphemisms: 2

14 May

Nick Cohen castigated Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith in an excellent piece in Sunday’s Observer. He pointed out that, according to the UK Statistics Authority, the figures IDS had used to support his assertion that “his department’s cap on benefits was turning scroungers into strivers” were wrong.

Cohen concluded his piece: “When pressed [the Conservatives] say that they want to ‘flag up’ their support of marriage, ‘signal’ their dislike of scroungers or ‘send a message’ to immigrants. Our language has been so corrupted by the euphemisms of advertising and public relations that we no longer realise that what they mean is that they intend to lie.”

And therein lies the problem with euphemisms. They enable lies to be made palatable by couching them in imprecise language.

Today’s picture

Well it’s raining hard – again – today (was last weekend our summer?) I went for a walk in Hyde Park again on Sunday morning. I don’t know what sort of ducks these are, but they are very beautiful and there are a lot of them on the Serpentine.