The language of ignorance

This has to be one of the most ignorant tweets I’ve seen:

Culture and language are linked only trivially, eh? Where to even begin?

It’s funny how little the metropolitcan elites actually know about the world around them, despite their supposed global outlook.


29 thoughts on “The language of ignorance

  1. Which reminds me of the time some French millennial woman living in Perth, WA approvingly quoted Kamm saying there was no need for immigrants to the UK to learn English. I asked her whether she believed the French requirement to demonstrate a certain level of French language skills to gain citizenship ought to be scrapped: no response.

  2. Language and culture are profoundly linked, but that truth is trivially obvious. I think you’re mis-interpreting what he wrote there. Though perhaps he meant that the linkage between language and culture is trivial, but if so then his command of the language is a bit suspect.

    Or perhaps I’m over-thinking a tweet:-P.

  3. Language and culture are profoundly linked, but that truth is trivially obvious. I think you’re mis-interpreting what he wrote there.

    Perhaps, that’s a good point.

  4. Linguists will recognise? I used to be one, a practical one anyway.

    So here’s what I recognise:
    I’m bilingual and have markedly different personalities in the two languages.

    I have no idea how common an observation this is, but in these postmodern times we accept validation of facts based on personal experience, not data. So there.

  5. I’m bilingual and have markedly different personalities in the two languages.

    I’m the same, not that I’m quite bilingual.

  6. Nice to know that Mr. Kamm will not deduce anything about the culture of a person never mind what language that person uses. He sees no difference between those who swear like troopers and those who don’t, he wouldn’t know if language was pc or not, it’s all the same to him. And an eastern European accent would give him no clue as to the speaker’s likely attitude towards say Roma or Muslims.
    Alternatively he’s showing off that he’s heard of an obscure hypothesis.

  7. Alternatively he’s showing off that he’s heard of an obscure hypothesis.

    I’d go with that. No point in reading any more into it.

  8. Sapir-Whorf is not “obscure”. Well, no more than Dunning-Kruger, say.

    Every now and then someone will come along with some bullshit like “the Japanese have no word for surrender” to argue some cultural bullshit.

    The evidence, as opposed to “everyone knows” is that Sapir-Whorf is true — we are not shaped by language particularly much at all. There are, for example very different cultures who share the same language, and very similar cultures who have totally different languages.

    The Swiss seem to all be Swiss, regardless of language spoken, whereas Polish and Russian are very similar but Polish and Russian culture are not particularly.

    I have exactly the same personality in Swedish. I’m stupid and grumpy in French, but only because I speak it so badly.

  9. I read it the way jabrwok read it. That said, I have to wonder why Kamm says that UKIP bought into Sapir-Whorf, when it is clearly the EU document that has bought into it.

  10. Language & Culture of lies doesn’t end well

    Facebook now considered the least-trusted tech company

    Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat: Facebook, its CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and its COO Sheryl Sandberg, and its public relations people, and its engineers have lied. They have lied repeatedly. They have lied exhaustively. They have lied so much they’ve lost track of their lies, and then lied about them.

    Honesty, Morals and Trust Do Matter

  11. Question: would educated Europeans care so much about racism if they didn’t speak the same language as Americans?

  12. This gentleman only spoke out what average western person thinks. Best proof is anti immigration parties pathetic election results for last decades.

  13. What jabrwok said: “self-evidently” seems the intended meaning of “trivially” in this case. In mathematics and (some fields of) philosophy, “trivially true” – roughly speaking – means “obviously true, therefore uninteresting.”

  14. What jabrwok said: “self-evidently” seems the intended meaning of “trivially” in this case.

    I concede that appears to be the case, but isn’t this the basis of the subject under discussion, i.e. that language and culture are linked?

    Oik: “Control the language, you control the culture.”

    Kamm: “While it’s trivially true that language is linked to culture, blah blah blah…”

    I’m not sure how you can dismiss something as “trivially true” when that’s the subject under discussion.

  15. Sorry, Tim, you’ve completely misread this.

    1) The Sapir-Whorf hypothesis has, indeed, been completely disproven. I remember going over it in Psych 100 over 25 years ago.
    2) “It’s trivially true that…” is a borrowed phrase from mathematical proofs; it means that what follows requires no explanation as it is obviously true simply by inspection.

  16. Once again Juri you show that your name must be Russian for “Brass Neck” ( an English expression denoting a cheeky bastard–like the Yiddish “Chutzpah”–the kind of a-hole who murders his parents and then wants mercy cos he is an orphan) .

    According to your own words your fucking job is shooting or hose-piping third worlders wanting to enjoy the benefits of Western culture –by swarming aboard and taking over Western merchant ships. And you are on here blowing for migration.

    Buggeroff back to the Kremlin. And don’t forget to ease off on the Vodka a point or two while you are on sentry-go.

  17. isn’t this the basis of the subject under discussion, i.e. that language and culture are linked?


    The subject under discussion is the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis. He’s saying that yes, language and culture are linked, but that does not mean that the far stronger statement – language determines thought – is true.

  18. The subject under discussion is the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis.

    I don’t think it is. He’s talking (presumably) about UKIP’s criticism of the EU changing the language to remove the -man suffix from various words. Kamm’s response is to mention the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, which I suspect UKIP have never heard of, nor do they subscribe to.

  19. Hi mr. Ecks. Sry for late reply , busy day, Putin played ice hockey so I did all troll job for him today.

    You are little wrong about Yiddish “Chutzpah”. It is not about murdering parents, it is about creation of Soviet Union and murdering tens of millions of white Christians and later claiming that the murderers were actually victims some kind of holy hoax. After that causing mass immigration in the West.

    We know what “Chutzpah” means. Do you know what the English phrase “Goyim knows” mean ?

  20. He’s an interesting guy, you could almost think he was one of the ‘swamp’ wanting to rule over the mere plebs.

    Heh, that’s a great example of what I’m on about. Happily, he’s being monstered in the responses.

  21. Interesting.

    Over a number of years, I’ve been in extended e-mail and verbal dialogue with and advocate of the feminist / LGBTIQWREY / transgender orthodoxy. I have become more and more aware that in the few areas where I thought there had been sufficient common ground to enable actual agreement or disagreement to be identified, we’d been talking across each other with no mutual understanding.

    I’ve now concluded that the “aggravated Orwell / 1984” strategy of removing words from the vocabulary (by rendering them unacceptable), and in addition altering their meaning (“ . . . she was accused of rubbing her penis against . . . ”), sometimes to the point of internal inconsistency and cognitive dissonance, means that inevitably more than one mutually uncomprehending culture will emerge, or has emerged.

    Adding in the legitimacy of altering historical record (M or F birth certificate), my initial view was that society is being deprived of an ability to engage in meaningful dialogue. Having wrestled with trying to express myself to her (yes, astonishingly it’s a she) within this “vocabulary space”, I now conclude that it is, additionally, even undermining people’s ability even to think.

  22. I now conclude that it is, additionally, even undermining people’s ability even to think.

    Which is rather the point, isn’t it?

    If you can’t think up an argument against something, you are forced to concede to it, even though your gut is telling you no. To do otherwise would mark you as unreasonable.

    Witness the mistrustful look on an old person’s face after they’ve reluctantly conceded that gays can get married, adopt kids etc.

    But of course it doesn’t matter how they feel, it matters what they do: how they vote, what they buy, whether they protest, etc.

  23. Sapir-Whorf has it precisely backwards; it isn’t that the language heavily influences the mind using it, but that the mind creates the language, which is naturally going to reflect the patterns of that mind’s underlying structure. Some influence will flow backwards from language to the mind, because if you lack the terminology to think about a concept, then that concept is difficult to even comprehend, let alone discuss. But, being human, we can borrow terminology from others, and do so quite willingly–Or, we make up new terms. It isn’t a one-way street, although perhaps it would be, were language a straight-jacket affair, hard-wired into minds.

    You can see this in a lot of things, because phenomenon that are of absolutely no import to the speakers of one language, reflected by the fact that they have no terms either describing that phenomenon, and feel no need for a supporting vocabulary to discuss…? Well, other languages may have entire lexicons with which to think about that phenomenon.

    English is a polyglot; we see a term or an idea that we think worthwhile, the English speaker immediately steals it. If it’s seen as not worth discussing, then… Nothing.

    Language is the tool of thought, and one of the key uses of it is that it is used to impart those thoughts to others. If your thinking is muddied, so too will your language be. Unclear language results in unclear thought; the argument could be made in the reverse, as well. It is very much a “chicken or egg” question.

    Anyone who is unfamiliar with the 13th Analect of Confucius would do well to look it up, read it, and ponder what he was talking about. For your edification, I offer the following extract from the official Chinese source:

    “Tsze-lu said, “The ruler of Wei has been waiting for you, in order with you to administer the government. What will you consider the first thing to be done?”

    The Master replied, “What is necessary is to rectify names.” “So! indeed!” said Tsze-lu. “You are wide of the mark! Why must there be such rectification?”

    The Master said, “How uncultivated you are, Yu! A superior man, in regard to what he does not know, shows a cautious reserve.

    “If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things. If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot be carried on to success.”

    “When affairs cannot be carried on to success, proprieties and music do not flourish. When proprieties and music do not flourish, punishments will not be properly awarded. When punishments are not properly awarded, the people do not know how to move hand or foot.”

    “Therefore a superior man considers it necessary that the names he uses may be spoken appropriately, and also that what he speaks may be carried out appropriately. What the superior man requires is just that in his words there may be nothing incorrect.” “

  24. We don’t believe in the (hard) Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, but demand that “-man” be removed from all words to be replaced by “-people” (e.g., “chairman” to “chair” or “chairperson”) because language stereotypes of “-man” oppress women.

    How these people are ridiculed into oblivion escapes me.

  25. “””..How these people are ridiculed into oblivion escapes me…””

    It is actually pretty easy. Character and morale and loyalty counts, not papers or education.

    Enemy knows that despite being pilot for 20 years and now director of National Aviation Academy you still have no balls.

    Should Antifa throw a rotten egg or should Mr. Soros give 100 pounds to get UK best aviators to admit that all air crashes are caused because of Airlines and aviation schools discriminate real pilots, the pigs because of their pink skin color.

    Education and experience can have everybody, character and moral is very much genetic. Educated and experienced rat is still rat, no moral, scared like hell and ready for sellout.

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