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Wings Over Scotland

Kettle, meet pot

Posted on February 11, 2012 by

It’s almost like they don’t even know they’re doing it, the poor loves.

“The First Minister was selective in his definition of a ‘gauleiter’ in the Holyrood chamber on Thursday.”

That’s Ruth Davidson, quoted disapproving of the FM’s shady behaviour in a Scottish Conservatives press release today. And it’s a strong point – there’s nothing worse than using definitions selectively to support your own case, right? But wait, what’s this?

“Alex Salmond described it as the kind of decision made by a tin-pot dictatorship populated by ‘gauleiters’ – which, according to the Chambers dictionary is a Nazi official.”

That’s the very same press release, just a few lines earlier. And unless we’re very much mistaken, what it’s doing is… you guessed it, readers. It’s selectively quoting from the dictionary definition of a “gauleiter”. Oops! Our wife’s going to kill us, etc.

But in fact, it’s rather worse than just selective – as the Collins definition quite clearly notes, “Gauleiter” in a Nazi context must have a capital “G”, because all German nouns are capitalised. If you write the word all in lower-case (as the Tory press release attributes to the FM) you’re explicitly citing the non-Nazi definition, which means that according to the Tories themselves, Salmond’s usage is correct and theirs is wrong.

And the Chambers definition they refer to makes things worse still – it explicitly refers to the Nazi definition as “historical”, meaning the current usage of the word is indeed to describe a petty bureaucrat. It also states that the former definition is only applicable to the period “under the Nazi regime”, which as far as we’re aware ended in 1945. (Germany has no Gauleiters nowadays.) In other words, unless you’re directly referring to specific events that took place in Germany under Adolf Hitler, the ONLY legitimate current definition of the word “gauleiter” is the one the First Minister used.

We’re sure the Scottish Conservatives would be embarrassed at this shocking display of both rank hypocrisy and basic grammatical ignorance, except that looking at what they’re doing to the unemployed, the disabled, and the sick at the moment, we’re forced to conclude that the Tories have no shame at all.

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  1. 12 02 12 17:33

    Round Up #01: Jan – Feb 2012 « Skull and Saltire

7 to “Kettle, meet pot”

  1. Scottish republic

    It's pathetic that's the best they've got is this against our natonal movement.  But that is all they've got because they are sitting on 300 years of corrupt empire building which has been reduced to zilch.
    We on the other hand wish to accomplish something for our country and countryfolk

  2. Bugger (the Panda)

    Ruth Davidson appears to be an idiot.
    That is a selective quotation from me.

  3. Shodan

    Ruth also "forgets" about all the comparisons to dictators that have been made to Alex, as she fails to complain or bring this up at any time. When SNP members are outright insulted or threatened they are told it should be shrugged off by her and her kind. She also fails to notice that the very same term has been used in parliament many times, by her own party no less. If it is okay for MPs, Lords and the media to use it and she doesn't complain about it then she's only making herself look pathetic and hypocritical, but then this is Ruth Davidson and she is rather dim and a very bad politician.
    Would we expect any better from someone who used valuable FMQ time to call someone fat instead of doing anything worth while or to justify her pay? This is how far the unionists have sunk. Truly pathetic bunch.

  4. Diane

    Every day is a school day right enough.
    By the way, how does one pronounce it?

  5. Shodan

    Big news for Scotland today. Apparently Whitney Housten has died. A tragic blow for the independence movement, I'm sure you will agree:

    The SNP and Scotland will never recover from this. Thank goodness for quality journalism at NNS raising the bar and letting us know about all these Scottish events.

  6. Shodan

    @ Diane
    GOW-LIGHTER, from what I can tell.

  7. RevStu

    @Shodan, Diane: Yes, that's correct.

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