Natural languages, communication, etc

Archive for April, 2011

Re: Luka's Other Brother?

to
do. It might be the girl, or he might have been followed after all. To look
round was to show guilt. He picked another and another. A hand fell lightly
on his shoulder.
     He  looked  up. It  was the girl.  She shook her  head, evidently as a
warning  that  he must keep silent,  then parted the bushes and quickly led
the  way along the  narrow track into the wood. Obviously she had been that
way  before, for  she dodged  the boggy  bits as  though by  habit. Winston
followed,  still clasping  his  bunch  of flowers.  His  first feeling  was
relief,  but as he  watched the strong slender body moving in front of him,
with  the scarlet sash that was just tight enough to bring out the curve of
her  hips, the sense of his own inferiority was heavy upon him. Even now it
seemed  quite likely that when she turned round and looked at him she would
draw  back  after all.  The sweetness of  the air and  the greenness of the
leaves  daunted him.  Already on the walk from the station the May sunshine
had  made  him feel  dirty and  etiolated, a creature  of indoors, with the
sooty dust of London in the pores of his skin. It occurred to him that till
now  she  had probably never  seen him in

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Re: BB Vote in polls The Krazy BandB Polls

into  a more  comfortable
position.
     ’I  expect  you were a  beastly little swine  in those days,’ she said
indistinctly. ‘All children are swine.’
     ’Yes. But the real point of the story–’
     From  her  breathing it  was evident  that she was  going off to sleep
again. He would have liked to continue talking about his mother. He did not
suppose,  from what he  could remember of her, that she had been an unusual
woman,  still less an  intelligent one; and yet she had possessed a kind of
nobility,  a  kind of purity, simply  because the standards that she obeyed
were private ones. Her feelings were her own, and could not be altered from
outside.  It  would not  have  occurred  to her  that  an  action which  is
ineffectual  thereby  becomes meaningless. If  you loved someone, you loved
him,  and when you  had nothing else to give, you still gave him love. When
the last of the chocolate was gone, his mother had clasped the child in her
arms. It was no use, it changed nothing, it did not produce more chocolate,
it did not avert the child’s death or her own; but it seemed natural to her
to  do  it. The refugee woman  in the boat  had also covered the little boy
with  her  arm, which was no  more use against  the bullets than a sheet of
paper.  The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that

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Re: First video of new KITT?

erecting flagstaffs on the roofs, and
perilously slinging wires across the street for the reception of streamers.
Parsons  boasted that  Victory Mansions  alone would  display four  hundred
metres of bunting. He was in his native element and as happy as a lark. The
heat  and  the manual  work had even  given him a  pretext for reverting to
shorts  and an  open shirt  in  the evenings.  He was  everywhere at  once,
pushing,  pulling,  sawing, hammering, improvising, jollying everyone along
with comradely exhortations and giving out from every fold of his body what
seemed an inexhaustible supply of acrid-smelling sweat.
     A new poster had suddenly appeared all over London. It had no caption,
and represented simply the monstrous figure of a Eurasian soldier, three or
four  metres high,  striding forward with expressionless Mongolian face and
enormous  boots, a submachine gun pointed from his hip. From whatever angle
you  looked  at  the poster,  the  muzzle  of  the  gun, magnified  by  the
foreshortening,  seemed  to be pointed straight  at you. The thing had been
plastered  on  every blank  space  on  every  wall, even  outnumbering  the
portraits  of  Big Brother.  The proles, normally  apathetic about the war,
were  being lashed  into one of their periodical frenzies of patriotism. As
though  to harmonize  with  the general  mood, the  rocket  bombs had  been
killing  larger  numbers of people  t

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Re: VRT boycot Vlaams Belang

caused by the gin.
     Suddenly  he  began writing in  sheer panic, only imperfectly aware of
what  he was  setting down. His small but childish handwriting straggled up
and  down the page, shedding first its capital letters and finally even its
full stops:

        April  4th, 1984. Last night to the flicks. All war films. One very
good  one  of  a ship  full  of  refugees  being  bombed somewhere  in  the
Mediterranean. Audience much amused by shots of a great huge fat man trying
to swim away with a helicopter after him, first you saw him wallowing along
in  the  water like  a porpoise,  then you saw  him through the helicopters
gunsights,  then he was full of holes and the sea round him turned pink and
he  sank  as suddenly  as though the  holes had let  in the water, audience
shouting  with laughter  when he  sank.  then you  saw a  lifeboat full  of
children  with a helicopter hovering over it. there was a middle-aged woman
might  have  been a jewess  sitting up  in the bow  with a little boy about
three  years  old in her arms.  little boy screaming with fright and hiding
his  head between her  breasts as if he was trying to burrow right into her
and  the  woman putting her arms  round him and comforting him although she
was  blue  with fright  herself, all  the time  covering him  up as much as
possible  as if  she thought her arms  could keep the bullets off him. then
the  helicopter planted a 20 kilo bomb in among them terrific flash and the
boat  went all  to matchwood. then there  was a wonderful shot of a child’s
arm  going up up up right up into the air a helicopter with a camera in its
nose  must  have followed it

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Re: Bye bye Godderis

others  – were  words of two or three
syllables,  with the  stress distributed equally between the first syllable
and  the  last. The use  of them encouraged a  gabbling style of speech, at
once  staccato and  monotonous. And this was exactly what was aimed at. The
intention  was  to make  speech, and  especially speech  on any subject not
ideologically  neutral, as nearly as possible independent of consciousness.
For  the purposes  of everyday life it was no doubt necessary, or sometimes
necessary,  to  reflect before speaking, but  a Party member called upon to
make  a  political or ethical  judgement should be  able to spray forth the
correct  opinions as automatically as a machine gun spraying forth bullets.
His  training fitted  him  to do  this,  the language  gave  him an  almost
foolproof  instrument, and the texture of the words, with their harsh sound
and  a certain  wilful ugliness  which  was in  accord with  the spirit  of
Ingsoc, assisted the process still further.
     So  did the fact  of having very few words to choose from. Relative to
our own, the Newspeak vocabulary was tiny, and new ways of reducing it were
constantly  being  devised. Newspeak, indeed,  differed from most all other
languages in that its vocabulary grew smaller instead of larger every year.
Each  reduction was  a gain,  since  the smaller  the area  of choice,  the
smaller  the  temptation to take  thought. Ultimately  it was hoped to make
articulate  speech issue from the larynx without involving the higher brain
centres  at  all. This  aim  was  frankly  admitted  in the  Newspeak  word
duckspeak,  meaning ‘to quack like a duck’. Like various other words in the
B  vocabulary,  duckspeak was  ambivalent  in  meaning. Provided  that  the
opinions  which were quacked out were orthodox ones, it implied nothing but
praise, and when the Times referred to one of the orators of the Party as a
doubleplusgood duckspeaker it was paying a warm and valued compliment.

     Th

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Re: Winterfest Online 2008 – Seventh Candle

interesting
words  that have  two contradictory meanings. Applied to an opponent, it is
abuse, applied to someone you agree with, it is praise.’
     Unquestionably  Syme  will be  vaporized,  Winston  thought again.  He
thought it with a kind of sadness, although well knowing that Syme despised
him and slightly disliked him, and was fully capable of denouncing him as a
thought-criminal  if  he saw any  reason for  doing so. There was something
subtly  wrong  with Syme.  There was something  that he lacked: discretion,
aloofness,  a sort  of saving  stupidity.  You could  not say  that he  was
unorthodox.  He believed  in the  principles  of Ingsoc,  he venerated  Big
Brother,  he  rejoiced over  victories, he hated  heretics, not merely with
sincerity   but  with  a  sort  of  restless  zeal,  an  up-to-dateness  of
information,  which the ordinary Party member did not approach. Yet a faint
air  of disreputability always clung to him. He said things that would have
been  better unsaid, he had read too many books, he frequented the Chestnut
Tree  Cafe, haunt of  painters and musicians. There was no law, not even an
unwritten  law,  against frequenting the  Chestnut Tree Cafe, yet the place
was  somehow ill-omened. The old, discredited leaders of the Party had been
used to gather there before they were finally purged. Goldstein himself, it
was said, had sometimes been seen there, years and decades ago. Syme’s fate
was  not difficult to  foresee. And yet it was a fact that if Syme grasped,
even  for three  seconds, the nature of his, Winston’s, secret opinions, he
would  betray  him instantly to the  Thought police. So would anybody else,
for  that  matter: but Syme more  than most. Zeal was not enough. Orthodoxy
was unconsciousness.
     Syme looked up. ‘Here comes Parsons,’ he said.
     Something  in the tone of his voice seemed to add, ‘that bloody fool’.
Parsons, Winston’s fellow-tenant at Victory Mansions, was in fact threading
his  way across the  roo

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Re: DirecTV buys ReplayTV !??!

bone. The Eleventh Edition won’t contain a single word
that will become obsolete before the year 2050.’
     He  bit  hungrily into his bread  and swallowed a couple of mouthfuls,
then  continued  speaking, with a  sort of  pedant’s passion. His thin dark
face  had  become animated, his eyes  had lost their mocking expression and
grown almost dreamy.
     ’It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words. Of course the great
wastage  is  in the verbs  and adjectives, but  there are hundreds of nouns
that  can be got rid of as well. It isn’t only the synonyms; there are also
the  antonyms.  After all, what justification  is there for a word which is
simply  the  opposite of some  other word? A  word contains its opposite in
itself.  Take  "good", for instance.  If you have  a word like "good", what
need  is  there for  a word  like "bad"? "Ungood"  will do  just as well —
better,  because it’s  an exact opposite, which the other is not. Or again,
if  you want a  stronger version of "good", what sense is there in having a
whole string of vague useless words like "excellent" and "splendid" and all
the rest of them? "Plusgood" covers the meaning, or "doubleplusgood" if you
want something stronger still. Of course we use those forms already. but in
the  final  version of  Newspeak there’ll  be nothing else.  In the end the
whole  notion of goodness  and badness will be covered by only six words —
in  reality, only  one word. Don’t you  see the beauty of that, Winston? It
was B.B.’s idea originally, of course,’ he added as an afterthought.
     A sort of vapid eagerness flitted across Winston’s face at the mention
of  Big  Brother. Nevertheless Syme  immediately detected a certain lack of
enthusiasm.
     ’You haven’t a real appreciation of Newspeak, Winston,’ he

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Re: MI5 Persecution: How to Identify the Persecutors (1933)

scratched his varicose ulcer. It
had  begun  itching again.  The thing  you invariably came  back to was the
impossibility  of  knowing what life  before the Revolution had really been
like.  He  took out of  the drawer a copy  of a children’s history textbook
which  he had  borrowed from Mrs. Parsons, and began copying a passage into
the diary:
     In  the old  days (it ran), before the glorious Revolution, London was
not  the beautiful city that we know today. It was a dark, dirty, miserable
place  where hardly  anybody  had  enough to  eat  and  where hundreds  and
thousands  of poor people had no boots on their feet and not even a roof to
sleep  under. Children no older than you had to work twelve hours a day for
cruel masters who flogged them with whips if they worked too slowly and fed
them  on  nothing but  stale breadcrusts  and water. But  in among all this
terrible poverty there were just a few great big beautiful houses that were
lived in by rich men who had as many as thirty servants to look after them.
These rich men were called capitalists. They were fat, ugly men with wicked
faces,  like the one  in the picture on the opposite page. You can see that
he  is  dressed in a long  black coat which was  called a frock coat, and a
queer,  shiny hat shaped like a stovepipe, which was called a top hat. This
was the uniform of the capitalists, and no one else was allowed to wear it.
The  capitalists owned everything in the world, and everyone else was their
slave.  They owned all the land, all the houses, all the factories, and all
the  money. If  anyone disobeyed them they could throw them into prison, or
they  could  take his job  away and starve him  to death. When any ordinary
person  spoke to a capitalist he had to cringe and bow to him, and take off
his  cap  and address  him as ‘Sir’.  The chief of  all the capitalists was
called the King, and–
     But  he knew the  rest of the catalogue. There would be mention of the
bishops  in thei

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Re: Jack Bauer gets "48"

hands  locked  together, invisible  among the press  of bodies, they stared
steadily in front of them, and instead of the eyes of the girl, the eyes of
the aged prisoner gazed mournfully at Winston out of nests of hair.

        II

     Winston  picked  his way up the  lane through dappled light and shade,
stepping out into pools of gold wherever the boughs parted. Under the trees
to  the left of  him the ground was misty with bluebells. The air seemed to
kiss  one’s  skin. It was  the second of May.  From somewhere deeper in the
heart of the wood came the droning of ring doves.
     He  was a bit early. There had been no difficulties about the journey,
and  the girl was so evidently experienced that he was less frightened than
he would normally have been. Presumably she could be trusted to find a safe
place.  In  general you  could not assume  that you were  much safer in the
country than in London. There were no telescreens, of course, but there was
always  the  danger of concealed  microphones by  which your voice might be
picked  up  and recognized; besides,  it was not easy  to make a journey by
yourself  without attracting  attention.  For distances  of  less than  100
kilometres  it  was  not  necessary  to get  your  passport  endorsed,  but
sometimes  there  were patrols  hanging  about  the railway  stations,  who
examined  the papers of any Party member they found there and asked awkward
questions.  However, no  patrols had  appeared, and  on the  walk from  the
st

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