An anger translator for President, please.

Language labeled political is often seen as intentionally duplicitous, obfuscatory, and biased. As though any human utterance is free from these trappings. Within any rhetorical situation, we’re all bound to particular purposes, assumptions about audience, and “readings” of context. These social contingencies contribute to our willed and unwilled form of communication in that situation. We may consciously choose to take on a posture and express ourselves with language we deem suitable to the occasion. At the same time, habitual, necessarily hasty processors that we are, our unconscious architecture (built by an inconceivable confluence of factors, perhaps most among them the vast inaccessibility of experience and how we internalize its fluid, dynamic accumulation) is swaying us to speak and behave in ways that our brain has deemed appropriate, independent of the space in which we have freedom to choose these things.

Translation: calling any speech act political is stupidly short-sighted.

At the same time, it is fair to say that being a politician demands a certain type of rhetoric. Typically, it’s the unavailability of lucid honesty. Whatever you might think about a given subject is inappropriate. You have to factor in and privilege what’s good for what you represent. This can be quite the tangle of thorns when you imagine the conflicting, often contradictory interests and ideologies pervading any single moment for any single individual. No wonder it’s easy to get lost in your own web of lies. Lies is a bit misleading here, in that it suggests deliberate betrayal of truth. More likely, a fine case of doublethink is perpetually at play for a politician, hence why it’s especially difficult to get them toward any authentic transparency. They’re so wrapped up in layer after layer of confusing (primarily profit-related) bullshit that they no longer have any meaningful access to themselves and their own thoughts.

That’s why having an angry translator, or better yet, an angry President would be a necessary wrench in the unproductive machinery (except for the already powerful) of our political structure and discourse. Having someone call bullshit out, or at least be able and free to recognize it, would be quite a boon in overcoming our naive ideology. If we can wake ourselves from the mythological dream that continues to ensnare our speech and perspective, shake our politicians’ eyes open especially, and get them to stop dumbly looking at the shadows on the wall, we might be able to step out of this damn cave. We might use our righteous anger for collective good.

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