Blog Credo

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.

H.L. Mencken

Monday, November 9, 2015


At this point it could become its own field of rhetorical study.

The key graph:

In each of these cases, you get the sense of a tiny kernel of truth which was told and embellished countless times until it congealed into its current fairly preposterous form, making up one part of the Ben Carson morality tale. To be clear, Carson's personal story is plenty laudable enough on its own. He was born into impoverished home, with a determined single mother with a very limited education and with determination and hard work he went to the country's best schools and became an accomplished surgeon. That's pretty good. But so many of the set-piece stories along the way sound like classic fish tales. Carson once had a two pound Largemouth Bass on his line and through a hundred retellings, it became a hundred pound monster that ate Carson's fishing partner and only got away after trying to devour Carson himself.

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