‘Partisan’ vs. ‘nonpartisan’: It all depends what side you’re on

‘Partisan’ vs. ‘nonpartisan’: It all depends what side you’re on

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As always in politics, the meaning and validity of rhetoric depends on whether George Soros or a Soros-funded shadow organization is funding you.

U.S. Representative, Speaker of the House, Senator and onetime Secretary of State, Henry Clay is often remembered as 19th century America's "Great Compromiser." We could use his talents in 2016. ( Public domain image via Wikipedia entry on Henry Clay.)

WASHINGTON, March 26, 2016 – Election Year 2012 has begun in earnest, and mud is flying fast and free across the Fruited Plain.

From Bernie Sanders’ tepid attacks on Her Hillariness to this week’s juvenile mudslinging fest between The Donald and The Tedster—based not on Obamacare, economic misery, international terrorism or illegal immigration but on relative marital virtue or lack thereof—the decline of America clearly continues apace.

The unwritten question on this November’s ballots is this: Does America want to go down the failed path of Euro-socialism or not? A vote for either of the Democrats—a socialist and a kleptocrat running (more or less) as a socialist—will cement America’s decline and fall. A vote for either current major candidate nominated by the party still posing as Republican—assuming no third-party lunacy—may slow America’s decline and fall, but likely won’t stop it. That’s what we’ve come to.

Read also: Stalinist ‘progressives’ building new ‘Devil’s Dictionary’

The major problem in all elections, especially the most recent ones here, is that what you mostly get in the press or on the stump is content-free rhetoric, not fact: words and phrases that serve as dog-whistles or cues for “partisan” crowds of either ilk to stand up and bark. (Loudly and violently if cameras are running.)

For its part, the press loves this stuff, preferring to cover slanders, smears, demagoguery and lies, never the objective truth, which is now uglier than making sausage. Or, worse, what now masquerades as “incisive political coverage and expert analysis” is poll-driven “horse race” coverage generated by a phalanx of lazy so-called journalists who invariably slant the numbers to favor the left rather than the right.

Actual reporting is just too hard. Besides, should the objective truth ever show up in a report, it will either be edited out or the story will get spiked by the editorial Thought Police. So reporters just don’t bother any more. (Ask Sharyl Attkisson.)

“Politics is personal” was a favored catch phrase in the 1960s and 1970s. It seemed silly even at the time. But over the past 40+ years, we’ve learned to our dismay that the then-New Left was totally serious about that notion. And still is.

Nothing embodies “personal” politics like the overheated rhetoric we’re about to get poured on our hapless heads like so many foul-smelling chamber pots.

All things “partisan” and “nonpartisan”

A classic, root example of this little game is the current usage of the presumably precise terms “partisan” and “non-partisan” or “nonpartisan.” Extreme characterizations and catch phrases commonly employed in 2016 all flow from this fountain of mislabeling, so let’s take a look.

Mirriam-Webster.com defines the adjectival version of “partisan” as “a firm adherent to a party, faction, cause, or person; especially one exhibiting blind, prejudiced, and unreasoning allegiance.”

The same source defines “nonpartisan” as “not partisan; especially : free from party affiliation, bias, or designation <nonpartisan ballot> <a nonpartisan board>”

But, as we indicated in our previous column, the left has, once again, quietly and subtly altered the actual meaning of both words, redefining them in a way that literally disappears any other interpretation other than their own self-serving re-definitions.

For the New Devil’s Dictionary, we now offer you a new pair of definitions for these terms. Memorize them. They’ve been in use now at least since the late 1980s, snaring the unwary who actually think these terms still mean what Merriam-Webster says they mean. Understanding the current usage of these terms will help you cut through all the political fecal material that’s heading your way.

New Devil’s Dictionary definition of “partisan”: Adjective, pejorative. Modifier that describes any thought, word, deed, opinion, or legislation uttered by, written by, or otherwise offered by Republicans, Libertarians or true independents.

As for “nonpartisan,” the New Devil’s Dictionary defines it thus: Adjective, connoting praiseworthiness. Modifier that describes any thought, word, deed, opinion, or legislation uttered by, written by, or otherwise offered by a Democrat, Marxist, Stalinist, Socialist, leftist, anarchist or anyone funded directly or indirectly by George Soros.

While we’re at it, let’s not forget that all-important and presumably all-inclusive term “bipartisan.” As redefined by the New Devil’s Dictionary: Adjective, connoting praiseworthiness. Shorter definition: Word used to describe legislation in which the Democrats and or leftists get everything that they want.

Fuller definition of “bipartisan“: Modifier that describes any thought, word, deed, opinion, or legislation uttered by, written by, or otherwise offered by a Democrat or leftist, with particular reference to left-liberal laws supported by Democrats or leftists as well as coerced, bamboozled, or bought-off Republicans. The latter are said, in such situations, to be acting in a “bipartisan spirit.”

An allied adjective often associated with the above terms is that all-important characterization, “mean-spirited”: “Adjective, pejorative. Anything whatsoever that is proposed by a Republican, Libertarian or surviving member of the tea party. Example: ‘Mean-spirited, highly partisan legislation that’s backed by Tea Party extremists.'”

After this election, we may have to examine this suite of definitions again. Both parties may be embarking on self-destruct mode in 2016. Our Founding Fathers (not “Framers”) must be spinning in their graves.

Don’t miss our next thrilling episode.

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Terry Ponick
Biographical Note: Dateline Award-winning music and theater critic for The Connection Newspapers and the Reston-Fairfax Times, Terry was the music critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2010) and online Communities (2010-2014). Since 2014, he has been the Business and Entertainment Editor for Communities Digital News (CDN). A former stockbroker and a writer and editor with many interests, he served as editor under contract from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and continues to write on science and business topics. He is a graduate of Georgetown University (BA, MA) and the University of South Carolina where he was awarded a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and co-founded one of the earliest Writing Labs in the country. Twitter: @terryp17