Consider figure above. The example about baseball fans seems innocuous enough, but the synonyms? If someone described himself as conservative architect, do you think he would like to be described by anyone of those synonyms? “Traditional,” maybe?

What about the folks on the other side of the political divide?

An architect might not want to be called a liberal architect, but most of those synonyms work. “Broad-minded” and radical are just about the only ones that don’t.

What about that other word that Liberals have adopted for themselves, “progressive.”

Isn’t a progressive architect just wonderful? Self identified “liberals” have ruined the word “liberal”. So now they are working on the word “progressive.”

Remember when Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders competed to be the most “presidential” presidential candidate. Is it not a wonder that the word “progressive” still has a positive connotation, at least in Dictionary by Merriam-Webster: America’s most-trusted online dictionary?

What is the point? The Bible requires us to love our neighbor. The Bible gives us moral standards that we apply with respect to how we treat each other as neighbors. That includes this commandment.

Exodus 20:16 New American Standard Bible

16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.

Unlike past generations, this generation of Americans does not take the Bible seriously. What do we use to replace the moral standards once provided for us by the Bible? There is no alternative. Doesn’t exist. In a society bereft of shared moral standards, we cannot trust someone just because he reputedly is an expert. We cannot even trust Dictionary by Merriam-Webster: America’s most-trusted online dictionary to objectively define words.


This post is one of the “OF TWISTED WORDS” series. For a list of “OF TWISTED WORDS” posts, see OF TWISTED WORDS => FEMINISM – Citizen Tom.


  1. The problem with terminology goes further, because western culture is considered liberal in the sense that we value the freedom of the individual, which conservatives would also be for. In that sense, all people who love freedom are liberal.

    What this also tells us is that the political application of conservative and liberal does not have the same connotation as conservative or liberal in a general sense. For instance, I can be liberal in my love for others, my generousity, my tolerance of other viewpoints than my own, yet be conservative in my moral values. A liberal can love tradition and Constitutional freedoms, even love our country, which is a form of conservatism, yet have very low moral values.

    A political conservative simply values retaining Constitutional principles as they are written; a political liberal has a loose view of the Constitution, which they believe must change and adapt with the prevailing culture, which is normally why they’re called progressive. This term was given to them in the 19th century. It’s the dialectic approach of Hegal and Kant, etc.

    But I would add that today’s political left are neither liberal nor progressive. They are totally intolerant of differing views and their policies (like CRT and social justice) are regressive–a form of neo-racism and discrimination, wanting to take away our freedoms. This is because they’ve been indoctrinated in the Orwellian neo-Marxist views of Marcuse and others in academia, which are the opposite views than that of freedom and true liberty. All true conservatives and liberals should be against that.

    1. Speaking of Orwell, this quote couldn’t be more appropriate than it is today: “It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words.” (1984)

    2. Yep, today’s condervatives want to conserve liberty while today’s “Liberals” want to abolish freedoms.
      Today’s conservatives want to conserve the most advanced progress in non-discrimination and equality before the law while “Progressives” want to regress to inequality before the law and race-based discrimination.

      1. @artaxes

        It is an odd thing. Almost nobody trusts politicians. Yet people are crazy enough to want to trust Democrats, the party of slavery — the party that insisted upon the enslavement of blacks — with the power to discriminate based upon race, sex, economic class, disability, and anything else they can come up with.

        1. Tom,
          It’s not that they trust Democrats. It’s that the media and Democrats have convinced enough people that Republicans are evil, homophobic, islamophobic, fascists, racists, nativists,…
          That’s the game which is played all over the world and not just in the US.

          1. Remember when you were young?
            No life experience + indoctrination by education system + not teaching basic historical facts + not teaching about marxist systems failure and destruction of lives + media propaganda.
            What do you expect?
            Older people have life experience which tells them how stupid some ideas are. They also have a memory of the cold war and more knwledge of history.
            The older crowd does not vote for Democrats because it trusts them. It votes for Democrats beacuse it sees Republicans as the greater evil ot it fears Republicans more than it fears Democrats.
            My theory is testable by looking at what Democrat campaign ads and the media did try to communicate.

          2. @artaxes

            I think what your observation shows is the effectiveness of propaganda when it is combined the vicious of the young indoctrination.

            We have had a public education system going back to the 1830’s. Over time politicians have wrested more and more control of this system from parents, and the content has grown more and more anti-Christian and Pagan. At this point it is even becoming Marxist.

            Nowadays most people vote in ignorance. We have to learn for ourselves how our country was designed to work. Many don’t even understand how its framers intended for our Constitution to work. They don’t understand something as basic as the fact that if the Constitution does not give the Federal Government power to do something it is not supposed to do it. They don’t understand why state and local elections are so important.

            Given such profound ignorance, that makes all the lies we hear in the news all the more effective. Ignorance leads to naivete. If you actually believe the network news and never think to doublecheck what those rascal are telling us, then…. God help us!

            Negative campaigning works because the legacy news media repeats all those lies. The only way around this is to go to our neighbors and to ask them to doublecheck their assumptions about the truth of what they have been taught. The only way around this to is go to our neighbors and to ask them why they believe the big corporate news media, the same people who tell them to tax the rich, the rich who never seem to get taxed even when Democrats have a solid majority.

          3. Tom, what you write is defintely a part of the solution. I intended to write something on that very topic. which I hope I can do in the coming days or next week.

    3. @Mel Wild

      Agreed! Of course, when you use the term “liberal,” you are largely using it in the classical sense.

      Over time words change their meaning. The Conservative generally resists changes which seem pointless or even detrimental, but the duplicitous will manipulate the meaning of words just to score propaganda points. Hence, I and others write of twisted words.

  2. Interesting, Tom! I had no idea that is what the dictionary said about those words.

    My favorite interpretation of conservatism is by Noël O’Sullivan, conservatism as a “philosophy of human imperfection.” This is why we have 3 branches of gov and a system of checks and balances. This is also why we value social structures like marriage or work or property rights. People are imperfect. These traditions enable us to manage our freedom.

    1. @insanitybytes22

      We like to think our laws protect us from bad people. That is the mistake the Pagans make. That is the mistake those who worship government make. Yet, as you pointed out, our laws and traditions exist primarily to protect us from our own excesses.

  3. Tom,

    My preference of the best word to describe someone who “twist words” (ex, liberals, conservatives, progressives, etc. etc.) to benefit ,,,,,,is intriguer which I became familiar with by reading King Solomon proverbs.

    King Solomon

    He who lays plans to do evil gets the name ‘Intriguer’. (Proverb 24:8)

    Definition of Intriguers

    9.the use of underhand machinations or deceitful stratagems.
    10.such a machination or stratagem or a series of them; a plot or craftydealing:
    political intrigues.

    Regards and goodwill blogging.

    1. @Scatterwisdom

      No shortage of intrigue. Never has been, unfortunately. So, we need to be wise enough to recognize it in ourselves and others.

      Thanks for the proverb.

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