Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Things To Keep In Mind As The New Year Approaches - 6 of 20

6. Be kind to our language. 

Avoid pronouncing the phrases everyone else does. 

Think up your own way of speaking, even if only to convey that thing you think everyone is saying. 

(Don't use the internet before bed. Charge your gadgets away from your bedroom, and read.) 

What to read? 

Perhaps "The Power of the Powerless" by Václav Havel, 

1984 by George Orwell, 

The Captive Mind by Czesław Milosz, 

The Rebel by Albert Camus, 

The Origins of Totalitarianism by Hannah Arendt, or 

Nothing is True and Everything is Possible by Peter Pomerantsev.

Yale historian and Holocaust expert Timothy Snyder wrote: "Americans are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or communism. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience. Now is a good time to do so." 
Snyder's a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (which includes former Secretaries of State), and consults on political situations around the globe. He says: 

Above, #6 of twenty lessons from the twentieth century, adapted to the circumstances of today.

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