Charley Reese, syndicated columnist for King Publications, has published a very nice, concise summary of general semantics and the value of applying it to daily language. He offers some examples drawn from today's headlines:
The important thing to remember is that the word is not the thing itself. People who confuse words with reality are said to suffer from a belief in word magic. Words actually produce no effect whatsoever on reality. They are just arbitrary symbols we use for the purpose of communication. ...To say that a country is a "terrorist state" does not prove that it is.And:
I hear people say that Arab textbooks teach anti-Semitism. Have they ever seen an Arab textbook? No. Do they read Arabic? No. Then what they are really saying is that somebody else told them that Arab textbooks teach anti-Semitism.If you want more information about this interesting and useful method for clarifying your thinking and understanding of the world, visit the Institute for General Semantics.