Saturday, November 13, 2010


File:Plato-raphael.jpg RHETORIC GONE AMUK

Hyperbole (pronounced /haɪˈpɜrbəli/, hye-PUR-bə-lee[1]; from ancient Greek ὑπερβολή 'exaggeration') is the use of exaggeration as a rhetorical device or figure of speech. It may be used to evoke strong feelings or to create a strong impression, but is not meant to be taken literally.
Hyperboles are exaggerations to create emphasis or effect. As a literary device, hyperbole is often used in poetry, and is frequently encountered in casual speech. An example of hyperbole is: "The bag weighed a ton".[2] Hyperbole helps to make the point that the bag was very heavy although it is not probable that it would actually weigh a ton. On occasion, newspapers and other media use hyperbole when speaking of an accident, to increase the impact of the story. This is more often found in tabloid newspapers, which often exaggerate accounts of events to appeal to a wider audience.
I like that. I mean, the bag weighed a ton.

I mean if someone said:

If Glenn Beck were a bag of shite he would weigh a ton.

I was musing as the snow fell for the first time this year in these northern parts, during the day anyway. Weather is good at hyperbole and weather cannot write or speak.

I see a comedic value in hyperbole, but with a million people in just this country who think they are journalists or pundits, it is over done. That is, hyperbole has become hyperbolic.

Representative Alan Grayson, who just lost his job is America’s Worst Politician, according to the greatest writer in politics today, George Will.

Representative Darrell Issa, soon to be the most powerful man in the universe,  declared that President Obama is the most corrupt politician in the United States; the most corrupt President in the history of this nation; although he felt it important to walk that statement back a little.

Apparently our Lord goes over the top sometimes according to Representative John Shimkus:

"I believe that's the infallible word of God, and that's the way it's going to be for his creation," Shimkus said.
Then he quoted Matthew 24:31.
"And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds from one end of the heavens to the other."
"The Earth will end only when God declares it's time to be over. Man will not destroy this Earth. This Earth will not be destroyed by a Flood," Shimkus asserted. "I do believe that God's word is infallible, unchanging, perfect.
The good lord will not take us out, until he is ready to take us out even though he promised never to take us out. Now that is inconsistency rather than hyperbole.

I mean Yogi told us that it would not be over until it is over.

But God’s word is infallible, unchanging, perfect….now that has to be construed as being hyperbole.

Tommy Franks liked hyperbole:

The latest manifestation of this is the juicy quote by Gen. Tommy Franks in Bob Woodward's Plan of Attack, in which Franks calls Feith "the fucking stupidest motherfucker on the face of the earth."

Now we all know that stupid things are accomplished by members of the human race everyday. I am sure there are stupider guys out there somewhere.

I mean what about the guy dressed as a breathalyzer and arrested for driving drunk while in costume? I mean that was kind of stupid.

And of course Sarah Palin thinks that she can win arguments with the Wall Street Journal.

I mean, how stupid is that?

So I have Feith that the former assistant to the President of the United States was and is not the stupidest person on the face of the earth, although I have no information concerning his relationship with his maternal caretaker.

Sometimes hyperbole is not hyperbole. It is kind of present or not present depending upon the circumstances:

I, however, find it impossible not to speak up when I hear the likes of Beck from the comfort of his armchair charge Soros with anti-Semitism. Beck paints Soros as a Nazi tool for having had the supreme nerve to survive Europe’s most violent Holocaust: the one that swept through Hungary under SS-Obersturmbannführer Adolf Eichmann during the summer and fall of 1944. Eichmann’s was a well-oiled machine by then, and he had to make quick work of Europe’s last remaining intact Jewish community. Even the most deluded Nazis knew the war was over, their cause lost. But Eichmann was determined to finish the job in Hungary. Only the most resourceful and the luckiest survived.

If the holocaust caused by the Germans was nosed out by Stalin (who was always part of Europe and Asia), I do not think that the adjectival use of language here was not called for in this little slam against beckerhead by Kati Marton at the Beast.

Now take Hunter S. Thompson. At times he even escaped the trappings of hyperbole:

The TV business is uglier than most things. It is normally perceived as some kind of cruel and shallow money trench through the heart of the journalism industry, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free and good men die like dogs, for no good reason

See Hunter never said the TV is the ugliest thing in the world. It was just uglier than most.

Besides hyperbole there is irony. I mean a guy named Rich talks about the  sins of the rich all the time.

But hyperbole is the most prevalent stroke of rhetoric.

And it might be a good idea for pundits and ‘journalists’ and bloggers to use er more often and est.

No comments: