“No word .. was ideologically neutral. A great many were euphemisms. Such words, for instance, as joycamp (forced-labour camp) or Minipax (Ministry of Peace, i.e. Ministry of War) meant almost the exact opposite of what they appeared to mean. “George Orwell: ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’
Appendix THE PRINCIPLES OF NEWSPEAK
Over the past forty years or so, neoliberalism has contributed to the impoverishment of our language by the usage, or perhaps misuse, of certain words. The aim of a Neoliberalspeak dictionary is to give some of the keywords their real meaning.
- affordable housing / adj. – unaffordable housing, mythical housing unavailable to most citizens in the UK
- bailout / n.; v. – a method of privatising financial gains and nationalising financial losses
- benefits / n. – poverty pay for the unemployed and disabled, used to be regarded as an entitlement but now regarded a a handout
- capitalism / n. – a gigantic global Ponzi scheme designed to benefit a small elite whilst plunging billions of people into abject poverty
- cop26 / n. – blah, bah, blah
- deficit reduction / n. ; v. – a means of class war by which the populations of countries are made to pay for the failures of the markets
- efficiency / n. – increasing profits by lowering the living standards of workers, this is typically achieved by cuts in pay, a reduction in holiday entitlement and reduced pension
- efficiency savings / adj. – cuts
- Eurozone / n. – proto-European capitalist empire where commercial interests are put above democratic rights
- gig economy / adj. low paid – sweatshop labour
- globalisation / n.; v. – a process of opening up the world to western economic imperialism, a means of looting the natural resources, exploiting labour in all the countries of the world and lowering the standard of living of workers in the West
- labour market flexibility / adj. – attack on workers’ conditions, lowering pay, reduction in holidays – cheap labour.
- mainstream media / n. – the propaganda arm of corporations and the 1% used to indoctrinate the masses with a false view of the world they live in
- net zero / n. – a cop out, a fraud, a way of justifying continuing the pouring out of carbon into our atmosphere to boost the profits of private corporations
- PFI / n. – a rip off, a way of pouring billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money into the pockets of private sector corporations to replace ageing infrastructure
- privatisation / n.; v. – asset stripping of the public sector by the private sector
- quantitative easing / adj. handouts for the rich, printing trillions of dollars to prop up a broken global economy
- social mobility / adj. – conservative fraudulent frame which is used to legitimise inequality in society
- strong leader / n. – a weak leader, i.e. someone who will do what we tell them to against the wishes of their own party and its supporters, we being the neoliberal so-called free press (corporate media)
- sustainable / adj. – unsustainable, a word that has become so debased and devalued as to have rendered it virtually meaningless
- tax / n.; v. – a levy by the state on the 99%
- Trump / n.; v. – a fart, noxious gas released from the anus
- we’re all in this together / adj. – you pay for our crisis
- WTO / n. – ‘we’ve taken over’, global organisation for the purpose of promoting the commercial interests of global corporations above the democratic rights of nation states
I’m sure that in time the dictionary will grow into a comprehensive guide to Neoliberalspeak. I hope that I’ll be able to get some contributions from some of the greatest exponents of Neoliberalspeak such as Tony Blair, Joe Biden, Boris Johnson, Keir Starmer, and Emmanuel Macron.
I’ve been a socialist and activist since I was a teenager. I’m retired now but still fighting for social, economic, and environmental justice.