From the Resident Logic NAZI to the Resident Grammar NAZIs

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I have a confession to make: I can’t spell!  Yeah, I know that’s shocking news to the rest of you “spelling-challenged” readers out there, but it’s true.  That means, if you are going to read what I write, you are going to find misspelled words.  That’s just the way it is.  But one of the things you won’t find – at least, not often – is an intentional mistake in reasoning.  You see, while I might not know how to spell, but I know how to reason, and because I know how to reason, I know that dismissing an argument over a misspelled word is less of a comment on the author or the argument than it is about the rationality of the person doing the dismissing.  In other words, if you think a misspelled word means you can ignore and argument, you are the one who has made the real mistake.

Now, my story begins in Rudyard, Michigan, back around 1970-71 – when I first started grammar school at age 4.  At that time, the school I attended, Rudyard Elementary, was experimenting with a new way to teach children to read.  I was “lucky” enough to be part of this test program.  If memory serves, this system was called the AEI Reading Program.  It used its own alphabet.  For example, it used special vowels, one of which looked like an “a” and “e” joined back-to-back, and another did the same thing with an “i” and “o.”  This system also used its own method of spelling.  We spelled words the way they sounded – using our own alphabet, that is.

Now, this system worked – to an extent.  The library had to keep its own aei book list because the language is different enough that, until you are very proficient at it, you can’t really read regular English well.  But it was easy to learn and those of us who were the subject of this “experiment” quickly mastered the ability to read.  By the time I was in the 3rd Grade, I was reading at an 8th grade level, and at a college level by the time I left the 5th grade.  However, I was never taught the rules of correct spelling.  You see, the aei program just assumed I would pick that up (or, more likely, the liberal educators who designed it didn’t think spelling mattered).  I have paid the price for this ever since.  It might also be why the system never gained widespread acceptance, I just don’t know.  Today, it’s nearly impossible to find anything on it.  It’s just another failed liberal experiment that was conducted on the children of our nation.  Thank you, John Dewey.

On the other hand, I did very well when it came to learning the rules and application of the rules of logic.  That application is called right reason, and, when conducted properly, it can help a person guide themselves through all manner of investigations.  Furthermore, it provides a reasonable level of assurance that whatever conclusions result from that instigation can be assumed to be relatively reliable.  One of those rules of logic tells us that we can’t dismiss an argument because of a misspelled word.  In fact, we can’t even make an assumption about the intelligence of the person who misspelled that word – especially in this day of auto-correct.  The people who think they make a point by dismissing an argument due to a misspelled word are actually announcing that they don’t know enough about how to think to even make a judgment about that argument, let alone the spelling of the word.  Yet, sadly, many of these grammar NAZIs believe they are the more intelligent among us.  If only they understood that intelligence does not equate to understanding or wisdom.  So, while many more people seem to know how to spell, too few seem to know how to reason.  When it comes to thinking, I think Thomas Sowell nails it with this comment:

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Do you think that maybe — just maybe — what we think of as “education” today is actually indoctrination?  And, if so, is it possible that maybe — just maybe — the things I have tried to teach you about Progressives and education are actually true?  If you don’t, then tell me: what do you know about John Dewey?

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20 thoughts on “From the Resident Logic NAZI to the Resident Grammar NAZIs

  1. All this for me? I’m touched. My students also say that I’m “touched”, but somehow I think they mean something completely different!
    I still can’t spell their, or is it thier?

    P.s.-that was fast! ;)

    • I don’t know how to edit a post, so may I add this,
      “The people who think they make a point by dismissing an argument due to a misspelled word are actually announcing that they don’t know enough about how to think to even make a judgment about that argument, let alone the spelling of the word.” I agree, but in the case I mentioned elsewhere, the misspelled word was a used as the prima-facie basis for a non-sequitur argument challenging the validity of the comment.
      I think I said that correctly. Did I?

      • chrisy,

        Yes, you said that correctly. And I understand the people you’re dealing with. I was SURROUNDED by them in college – and that was 19+ years ago! I can only image what it’s like today :-(

    • Chrisyurhee,

      It’s that…”reaching out and TOUCHING someone” that’ll get you in trouble…..especially on a crowded Bus or Train….Or Cruise Ship….. :- ) .

  2. “Dewey was the voice for a liberal and progressive democracy that has shaped the destiny of America and the world”. Obviously written by one of the infected not by me. I can tell you about a High School Teacher here who taught a political history class. Among what she did was to get her class to sponsor debates between current politicians. In this particular instance the two Mayoral Candidates. The incumbent was waxed by the challenger and the straw poll at the end of the debate proved it. In steps the Principal and Union which brought the reign of terror down on the teacher who by the way was NOT a Union member. She damn near lost her job. The gripe by the progressives was the questions the students asked the candidates. Were they really the students or the teacher. So is education a mess? If you ask me it is the reason why we are having the problems we are today and will continue to have until we cycle through the j progressive liberals who teach lies and change history. Get rid of the Federal Department of Education!

  3. “I have a confession to make: I can’t spell! Yeah, I know that’s shocking news to the rest of you “spelling-challenged” readers out there, but it’s true. That means, if you are going to read what I write, you are going to find misspelled words. That’s just the way it is.”

    If you don’t go batty, I can fix your typos. :)

      • “OK, but I post so much and you work so often, the grammar NAZIs will most likely beat you to most my mistakes”

        Yeah well. F**K them. Liberalism is obviously incongruous with reality. I’ll correct whatever bothers me, and the rest …they can piss off for all I care. Rights aren’t subject to their perception of our need.

          • With all Due respect….and U NO I have a lot of it 4 U , ….

            U R letting the agenda ( content of post) be controlled by a Self-admitted Leftist Tree-hugger … who brawt Up the issue in the Furst place.

            Eet iss a little bit of that Libral chant …. “Ur a dum-bed right-wingnut…I’m a smart Edjumacated Leebral “……which we on the Right (Correct) side have come to know and “LuV” about the Left.

            • Don,

              Naws, dawg — knot et all. Didunt you notice dat I deftly slid ins dat liddle notes ’bout dem leftees not beins ablse to tink str8 if dey tauwt deys was smarter en us cause dey tinks dey kens spells more gooder? Sees, I gots ‘em ain dey dident even sees wut hits ‘em ;-)

              • Yes … The left definitely has a ..”Predilection for Irrelevancies” … to paraphrase Spock in the 1st ST movie.

                The Rubio water thing another purrfecto example.

                • Don,

                  WOW! I knew it was bad, but I didn’t realize it was THAT bad. And here I thought they just liked to worry about things that don’t make any difference.

                  I sure hope Spok can help them ;-)

              • Yes,

                Except the Left has turned Spock’s motto from…”Live Long and Prosper”…

                Into….” Live Wrong and be Profligate..”….

  4. Don,
    “U R letting the agenda ( content of post) be controlled by a Self-admitted Leftist Tree-hugger … who brawt Up the issue in the Furst place.”
    Are you calling me a tree hugger? Now that’s funny!

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