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February 15, 2005

Comments

Wake me up when you guys want to really grapple with this idea instead of making snarky "above-it-all" cynical jokes.

Haiti? Oh, wait...

Jonas: I have tried to grapple with the question how we should win the 'hearts and minds' part of the War on Terror (assuming that's what you mean by 'this'), in the post I linked to above and elsewhere. I also think that Fred Clark's idea is a good one; it's just a little late to act on it. Part of the reason I posted this at all is that it makes me sick at heart to think how badly we've blown this. And if I don't get to laugh when I'm sick at heart, then things are even worse than I thought.

Haiti? Oh, wait...

There 's always Cuba.


Even though I have no doubts that we will manage to f*** that up.

Remember the last time Christians become right-wing nihilists?

DQ: we will manage to f. it up?

Are people somehow missing what he's talking about when he says: "Our model American outpost could be established on a small part of that same island -- some distinct cove or bay."?

be it ever so humble, there's no place like Gitmo.

if i believed in hell, i'd reserve a particularly unpleasant spot for General Miller.

kind of odd . . . once upon a time the walls were built to keep the cubans out. now they're there to keep our "guests" in.

America, Land of the Somewhat Free, Home of the Kinda Brave.

jonas, i'm cynical, but i'm not joking.

Francis

Germany, Japan, Greece, Berlin Wall, Korea and the Cold War, hilzoy I hope you get the general thread about liberty and its cost. That is, it isn't free, never has been.

DQ: we will manage to f. it up?

I have great faith in our short sightedness and greed!!!

I have great faith in our short sightedness and greed!!!

Well no surprise here that you would take such a position.

Well no surprise here that you would take such a position.

It's called a passing knowledge of history!!!

Revisionist history, being on the wrong side of history, your middle name, DQ.

Revisionist history, being on the wrong side of history, your middle name,

As opposed to mythology.

TtWD: Did I suggest, somewhere, that liberty was cost-free?

Timmy the Wonder Dog: Germany, Japan, Greece, Berlin Wall, Korea and the Cold War, hilzoy I hope you get the general thread about liberty and its cost. That is, it isn't free, never has been.

So imprisonment without due process of any kind for someone you've never heard of is a price you are willing to pay for freedom? Such noble sacrifice brings a tear to my eye.

And this is not even to address what actually goes on inside our extralegal prison camps.

In order to get freedom, we have to curtail freedom. In order to secure democracy, we have to bypass democracy. In order to uphold the rule of law, we have to declare ourselves above the law.

Seems logical and reasonable to me.

(Incidentally, Hilzoy, it does look as though some people have missed the point, possibly because it was made too subtly. Perhaps the correct way to make this point would be to emblazon the message in thousand-foot high letters across the sky, using words of one syllable or less. Or, maybe we can lock dissenters up somewhere and torture them until they agree with us.)

being on the wrong side of history...

I'm curious. Does this phrase actually mean anything to the readers here?

Gee, I agree it would be nice to reform Gitmo and make it a city on a hill, but why don't Americans concentrate on their own homeland and make IT a city on a hill. Seems to me there are enough problems internally right now before Americans really have the ability or the moral right to impose their values (which don't even show in their own country) elsewhere. Seems to me for a Christian country they sure seem oblivious to the SErmon on the Mount about the mote in thine eye etc. But what do I know, I'm just a Muslims living in a benighted country in the Mdidle East.

I like the meme of 'revisionist history' in there. It's a silver lining that even Timmy realizes it is not a good thing. Maybe he'll take up the bit in Bird's post on Woods.

I recognized where Fred meant immediately.

Anarch: now that I think of it, I realize that while I've always assumed that 'on the wrong side of history' was something Marxists claimed their opponents were, I have no clue where the phrase comes from. Google doesn't help; it just turns up a million and one places where it's used. So tell all ;)

And Anna: I would have hoped we'd try to do both. But what do I know: I'm just an atheist ex-Christian moral philosopher.

fdl: if i believed in hell, i'd reserve a particularly unpleasant spot for General Miller.

Don't forget, whichever spot you reserve for him, Bush and Rumsfeld belong somewhere lower.

now that I think of it, I realize that while I've always assumed that 'on the wrong side of history' was something Marxists claimed their opponents were, I have no clue where the phrase comes from.

It sounds like warmed-over Trotskyism to me but I'm assuming it has a wider cachet than that, hence my question. Can't tell all because, alas, I know nothing :)

Interesting about the quote. here has it as a comment of Samuel B. Pettengill.

"Interventionism and one-worldism have put us on the wrong side of history."

Given Timmy's constant invocation of Wallace, perhaps Pettengill (a Hoosier, by the way) is the source. He was a pretty interesting guy.

Samuel B. Pettengill, Democratic Congressman from Indiana, 1930-1938, was another kind of Old Right stalwart, a Cleveland Democrat. He was a vocal critic of the New Deal and published a detailed attack on its economic policies and "planning" in 1940. He was clear about the parallels with mercantilism and fascist corporatism, writing that "the second or third New Deal is fundamentally fascist." All such systems of central economic regimentation--fascist, Nazi, Soviet--were antithetical to the American form of government.

The New Dealers were happy to experiment with all of them. He noted the Nazi regime’s insistence on breaking down the constituent states of the German Reich and compared this to centralizing trends at home. He wrote: "that we are moving toward some form of National Socialism and away from our form of government seems hard not to believe."[20]

In an address given in October 1949, Pettengill denounced the New Deal-Fair Deal program, now using the term "socialism" to describe it. His central theme was the twin evils of high taxation and monetary inflation, which would render people dependent. Inflation was also an engine for eroding genuine federalism: "The federal government has a printing press; the states do not. This easy money route promotes the extension of federal power and subtracts from state and local self-government."[21]

Now, all this might have some bearing on war and peace. Pettengill took on foreign policy in the October 1954 Freeman.[22] After crusading for democracy in one war and the Atlantic Charter in another, where, he asked, "is freedom from fear, of the A-bomb and H-bomb, or freedom from conscription for our youth?" Our leaders blindly destroyed the balance of power in Europe and Asia and now wanted "to rearm our recent foes as our noble allies against our recent noble ally." This did not seem like a success. Giving out a premature judgment on the Wise Men, Pettengill wrote, "[a]fter forty years of demonstrated failure it is difficult to understand why these pontifical gentlemen should be listened to."

The authorities had conducted an unconstitutional war in Korea and were waging "a psychological war" against the people and in favor of intervention, by "propaganda blown big by the radio, the screen, and TV." Secretary Marshall had called for an end to debate on foreign affairs in October 1950, Pettengill notes, just "when we were being told that we probably faced twenty to forty more years or more of the same."

One could not prove that staying out of the world wars would have made the world better off: "It is enough to ask whether the world could be worse off today if we had stayed at home and adhered to the teachings of Washington, Jefferson and Monroe."

Referring to our cozy relationship with Marshall Tito, Pettengill says, "With no valid plan for peace except naked power politics, we join up with every gangster with a bodyguard." Taking what the uninformed might think a "left-wing" view, he adds that through the entangling NATO alliance, we had become "the unhappy supporters of European colonialism in Africa and Asia against a new tide of nationalism sweeping over the colored races as it swept over our shores in 1776." Sounding a lot like William Appleman Williams, he says: "Interventionism and one-worldism have put us on the wrong side of history."

People came to America to escape "crushing taxes, the 'goosestep,' one-man government, military conscription, 'a soldier on the back of every peasant'" and not to recreate those same evils here. Pettengill thought it "utterly fantastic" to believe that "Russia can conquer America on the North American Continent"--but then he was not privy to all that "information" gathered by a body that is central and is an agency. Ending this wonderful diatribe on a "right-wing" note, he says, "No one will save America except Americans who put their own country first."

link

Googling also turns up this interesting but unrelated page about Pettengill's efforts to stop block booking. The site had a number of interesting pages.

OTOH, this Time article seems to have Krauthammer using the phrase with quotation marks, but I can only see it in the google search.

Sorry, left off the link for the Krauthammer essay

The search has this

TIME Magazine Archive Article -- Terror and Peace: the "Root Cause ... ... the "Root Cause" Fallacy By CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER Sep. ... One must not find oneself "on the wrong side of history.". ... Arab world has in modern times been subordinated ... www.time.com/time/archive/ preview/0,10987,962377,00.html - Similar pages

Does this phrase actually mean anything to the readers here?

not to me - not literally anyway. for me, it's just another oft-repeated wingnut catch-phrase, a way to quickly spot someone who has spent a lot of time drinking from the Great Kool-aid Pitcher of Conservatism.

"Revisionist history, being on the wrong side of history"

"Does this phrase actually mean anything to the readers here?"

Well, yes, for those of us who used to browse the comment threads at Tacitus,we can recognize it as a common trope used by Timmy the Wonder Dog: noted author/editor of those fabulous texts The Wonder Dog Book of American History and its companion volume The Wonder Dog Book of World History, which I am sure will soon be fixed as standard reference texts throughout the nation.
Most typically, Timmy's method is to apply the brush of scorn which "History" (rightfully, in many cases) attaches to adherents of "wrong", or in any event, "loser" ideologies and/or policies (Fascism, Communism, "Leftism" in general, Islamism, etc.) to present-day critics of (in no particular order) the Bush Adminstration, the war in Iraq, the "War on Terror", "extraordinary rendition", American foreign policy, Republicans, conservatives, Social Security privatization, etc., etc.: or, for that matter, anyone
he disagrees with.
Basically, Timmy is saving "us" the trouble of having to wait many decades to be declared "on the wrong side of history", and simply doing it for us now. Thanks.

via Yglesias, Hindrocket writes that "Jimmy Carter isn't just misguided or ill-informed. He's on the other side."

hilzoy,

now that I think of it, I realize that while I've always assumed that 'on the wrong side of history' was something Marxists claimed their opponents were,

I thought it was a term Hegel came up with and his right and left both embrace it.

NeoDude: it definitely has a Hegelian bent to it, but it doesn't sound to me like his style. (I could be wrong.) That's one reason I thought of Marx.

Hilzoy, it sounds to me like a late Jacobin's version of Hegel. But not Marx, I don't think. Marx's style is more gothic: the "wrong side" would be old forms of history, coming out of their graves and haunting the present. (I always imagine Evil Dead III whenever I read Marx...)

Oh, and I did get the joke, but I guess it just made me sad. Most of the carribean is screwed up now that the global economy doesn't rely so much on sugar and slavery. It's not exactly inspiring.

fdl: if i believed in hell, i'd reserve a particularly unpleasant spot for General Miller.

Jesurgislac: Don't forget, whichever spot you reserve for him, Bush and Rumsfeld belong somewhere lower.

You know, I'm just fresh off a little discussion over at Red State (my first ever, and by the lack of good faith offered by those with whom I was arguing, probably my last as well) in which I, von, and Sebastian argued that condemning Arthur Miller to Hell was way, way over the top even for someone who deplored his politics. Now, I recognize the distinction between saying this about someone still living and saying it about the recently dead, and moreover between someone who directly enables acts and someone who is perceived as an apologist for those acts, but this still makes me very uncomfortable. And I don't even believe in Hell.

I, von, and Sebastian

In no particular order of potency of argument. Style should have dictated listing myself last, of course, but alas, I have none. Sorry guys!

I'll settle with Hegelesque.

Oh, and let us not forget a Cuban revolutionary's favorite Hegelesque statement:

"History will absolve me!"

Or was that Tony Blair at the UN?

"condemning Arthur Miller to Hell"

Isn't it unchristian and blasphemous to wish someone to Hell? Satanic, in fact?

Never forget, hilzoy: Freedom costs a buck-oh-five.

Phil,

Now that you brought that up...isn't it weird that many right-wingers feel so much kinship with the South Park Republicans? I have read so many essays and articles explaining why South Park and Team Amercia are "conseravtive" or at least Republican.

Most of their work makes fun of everything...even blind patriotism.

I mean don't the all-American patriots in all their work seem clueless and out of step with reality?

It is funny, NeoDude -- I consider myself pretty mainstream libertarian, and I love the show. But if there's one thing Parker and Stone are, it's equal opportunity offenders, and clueless right-wingers are targets of theirs at least as often as clueless left-wingers.

Then again, they claimed that "That's My Bush!" was supposed to be tribute and not parody, but I think maybe they were lying.

I've always found that Parker and Stone are great at observational humor, but not so good at synthesizing their observations into a coherent moral outlook. They are essentially stuck in that adolescent, rebellious stage of development where they challenge everything and rail against the hypocrisy of the world, but come to ass-backward conclusions when actually pressed to come up positive views of their own.

Well, yeah, but that describes me, too! :D

They are essentially stuck in that adolescent, rebellious stage of development where they challenge everything and rail against the hypocrisy of the world, but come to ass-backward conclusions when actually pressed to come up positive views of their own.

I think they do all of their irony without any irony. I mean they just don't care.

A real nihilism.

Once life's ambiguities are embraced, some become religious, poltical or what ever...they decide to do the radical deconstructivist thang and just play.

Not that I am defending such a worldview. But it is ironic that right-wingers are finding this as an aesthetic that speaks to their political souls.

The phrase "wrong side of history" was very popular on Fox in the lead up to the iraq war. The war detractors (just about everyone) was going to be on the wrong side of history and shamed when the extent of Iraqs WMD were discovered. When the Americans were enjoying the spoils of war with all those lucrative contracts, the rest wouldn't get a look in, they'd be left on the wrong side with their noses pressed against the glass trying to pretend they'd supported the war all along.

Didn't quite work out like that but Fox knows no shame.

(damn, I really killed the thread upstream.)

What is the right-winger's obsession with traitors?

This is my answer: Because my voice would have been mixed together in Germany with the voices of traitors to their own people — with the voices of those who once attacked our front soldiers from the rear — with the voices of those who besmeared front soldiers and praised cowards — with the voices of those in Germany who have the Treaty of Versailles on their consciences. I wanted nothing to do with them.

"An die Frontkämpfer der Welt," in Rudolf Hess, Reden (Munich: Zentralverlag der NSDAP., 1938)

(sorry, couldn't resist)

So imprisonment without due process

Lincoln comes first, Wilson and then FDR if we are talking about history.

When I think of the "wrong side of history" Duranty and Wallace immediately come to mind.

Jay C, deja vu 1980s, you don't have to wait for decades. Just saying.

Speaking of political souls, I found this article interesting.

With liberals, Vietnam redux is all too conscious: It is irresistible to them (and to almost anyone over 40) to fit the war in Iraq into the template of Indochina, even if the parallels are only superficial. This Groundhog Day, as we all looked forward to watching a Beatle perform on TV (and on a Sunday evening in early February, just like in 1964), a fiftyish antiwar friend of mine in Park Slope dismissed the election in Iraq as “just like the election in Vietnam in 1967.”

And yes there is much more to the article but I like the irony.

C'mon Timmy,

You know this whole Iraqi thang is more Spanish-American War and with a dose of Lebanon and a dash of Europe pre-WW1 (all the backstabbing and false accusations).

I posted these, sometime ago, under Haven. Please, tell me if its to much.

-------------------------------------

">http://www.salon.com/opinion/feature/2003/02/21/maine/index_np.html"> "A splendid little war". (Salon.com)
Forget WWII or Vietnam. The real comparison for an invasion of Iraq is the Spanish-American War, when an aimless U.S. presidency and a lazy media looked for redemption.

Where Does Iraq Stand Among U.S. Wars? (Washington Post)
Total Casualties Compare to Spanish-American, Mexican and 1812 Conflicts

Back to the Spanish-American War of 1898? (New America Foundation)
A group of Americans dreamed of creating a U.S. empire. Their opening came with the mass death of Americans in a shocking event. Media sensationalism whipped public outrage into a war frenzy. The resulting war was a success, but the subsequent occupation was a failure. Michael Lind asks: Does this describe the invasion of Iraq in 2003 — or the Spanish-American War of 1898?

Iraq's Historical Predecessor
First, the most obvious similarity would be that Spain was accused of destroying the USS Maine, killing 262 Americans. The ship, blockading Spanish-owned Cuba at the time, was the source of much tension. Likewise, Iraq was accused of sponsoring terrorists, and producing weapons of mass destruction. Today, we understand that the USS Maine was not destroyed by the Spanish, just like today we understand that it is possible Iraq had no connection September 11th, and may not have actually been producing banned weapons, but rather was just in the research-and-development stage. Of course, there will be differences in these comparisons. It is still probable Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, and may have had a role in helping Osama Bin Laden. Yet, in both cases, it is obvious that American intelligence gathering capabilities were not up-to-date, leading to unnecessary intelligence failures.
 
The second most obvious similarity between the two wars is the question of human rights. In both cases, the American people were greatly moved by talks of human rights violations. And in both cases, it led the United States to accurately predict that the oppressed people would become a treasured ally in the war—and in both cases, led us to underestimate the post-war era. The Spanish forces persecuted the Cuban people. A Spanish minority ran the Cuban majority. In Iraq, Saddam Hussein, a Sunni (a minority) also led over the majorities, which are the Kurds and the Shiites. The people did not defend either regime, leading to quick victories with relatively low casualties than earlier predicted.
 
Third, both Cuba and Iraq became protectorates. Rather than being annexed, the United States trumpeted that we would justly return independence to the countries once law and order was established. In both cases, guerilla warfare occurred, and as hostilities continued, the people grew less and less loyal to the American forces. Both Iraq and Cuba in the post-war era were controlled by American influence, while the actual domestic political situation was decided by the peoples themselves. This is a just thing to do, but it does not always bring about the outcome intended.

Iraq and the Spanish-American War: A Comparison Study (Polemic)
When one asks, “Why are we in Iraq?” the historical event that is most illuminating is the Spanish-American war. Like the Spanish-American war, the war in Iraq was a “release valve” for the pressures built up in the nation; like the Spanish-American war, ideological “yellow journalists” greased public sentiment to facilitate a conflict of choice, not necessity. The other historical situation that is telling of our current problems is the Western European power’s reaction to Hitler’s saber rattling in the late 1930’s. While today the Europeans are chided for appeasing Hitler, their true folly is not being able to comprehend and prepare for a new kind of enemy capable of fighting a new kind of war. Sadly, our leaders have already made a similar mistake in the fight against terrorism.

Why Americans May Grow Impatient with the War in Iraq
How do presidents decide for war? In the March issue of Presidential Studies Quarterly, editor George Edwards and I adopted a historical approach, asking experts on various past wars to analyze the decision-making process that preceded each of those conflicts. Five wars were chosen: the Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, the Vietnam War, and the Persian Gulf War of 1991.

The Spanish-American War, the Vietnam War, and the Persian Gulf War can fairly be described as “discretionary” wars for the United States. In advance of these conflicts, American territory was not attacked or directly threatened, and American lives were endangered only incidentally. By contrast, the two world wars were “non-discretionary,” in that American lives or territory (or both) came under direct attack. For this reason—among others—the Spanish-American War, the Vietnam War, and the Persian Gulf War generated considerable controversy in the weeks surrounding the president's decision for war, while American belligerence in the two world wars was comparatively noncontroversial.

The Uprising (Strategic Insights, Volume II, Issue 9)
The American readiness to believe in an Iraqi uprising was undoubtedly driven as much by political as by military considerations. Anyone contemplating the turmoil of the current occupation may well feel that, had the Iraqi people actually risen up against Saddam, some of the problems the United States and its allies now face in restoring order might have been mitigated. Still, one should not be too quick to assume that, had Iraq been liberated by Iraqis and Americans fighting side by side, the results would necessarily have been conducive to mutual trust and understanding. America's first venture in overseas intervention was conducted on just such a basis, with disappointing results for all concerned.

In 1898 the United States intervened in a war then underway in Cuba, by which indigenous revolutionary forces sought to wrest control of that island from its colonial master, Spain. Three years of fighting had produced inconclusive results, but significant casualties and much damage to Cuba's economy. American opinion favored the insurgents, owing to long-standing American dislike of European imperialism, and perhaps an instinctive preference for the underdog in a fight. It would at any rate be on that basis—as a campaign to liberate Cuba from Spain—that war would be justified to the American public. This point of view was embodied in the Congressional declaration of war itself, which included a proviso that affirmed Cuba's rightful freedom and independence, and disclaimed "any disposition or intention to exercise sovereignty, jurisdiction, or control over [the] island except for the pacification thereof."

Timmy the Wonder Dog: Just saying.

With all due respect, Timmy, perhaps you could offer a bit less of the "just saying" and a little more of the "making explicit points". It would sure help those of us who aren't itching for to be chided for mind-reading, particularly when we mistakenly interpret you to be saying Jimmy Durante and Sir William Wallace were somehow on the "wrong side of history". Just saying.

Maybe Timmah should get his own blog.

With apologies to Edward Lear:


"How pleasant to know Mr. Dog!"
Who has written such volumes of stuff.
Some think him insightful as fog
But a few think him pleasant enough.

His mind is replete and insidious.
His nose is remarkably cold.
His barking is sometimes quite hideous.
His coat is oft speckled with mold.

He has ears, and two eyes, and twenty fingers.
Leastways if you count his dewclaws.
Long ago he was one of the singers
But now he just types with his paws.

He sits in a beautiful Starbucks
With billions of books on the net.
He drinks a great deal of spiced eggnogs
But never has lost his lunch yet.

He has many friends, lay men and clerical,
Old Wonder's the name on his collar.
His body is perfectly spherical.
He pays with a black-and-white dollar.

When he's walked in waterproof sweaters,
The children run after him so!
Calling out, "There is mud to his withers,
That oddest of Wonder Dogs, oh!"

He weeps by the side of the ocean,
He weeps at the mess on the hill.
He purchases pop and a potion
In case of a President Hil.

He reads, but he will not write, English.
He cannot jump high as a frog.
Ere his flickering candle extinguish,
How pleasant to know Mr. Dog!

"verse" 5, line 3 should read "His body's become blogospherical".

And I shouldn't try to write even light verse on the fly.

Well, I was always a fan of the conservatives at Tacitus...they were/are some of the best...it was just hard to troll Kevin White[?] when I found out he was in his forties.

I feel like a degenerate when I say some thing disrespectful to professors and my elders, in the "real" world & the bLoggosphere.

Rilkefan - you rock!

I don't know whether to be sorry or grateful that "Jesurgislac" doesn't rhyme with anything...

Though actually.... asthma attack, bicycle rack, ivory black, magazine rack, panic attack, plan of attack, serrated wrack, sonora lac, surprise attack, telephone jack, under attack ...

Writing verse can be so fullfilling, especially when the Dude brings a smile to Jes. You missed the fire hydrant verse, though.

Spanish American War, in that analogy, is the WTC the Maine? Should I say it, why not, just asking.

Grommit, my points are very explicit and short to the point. The word "Duranty" says volumes as does Wallace, just ask hilzoy if you need further explanation.

Hey, praktike, how did you like the vote in January and the assasination in Lebannon, those Iranian fascists seem to be worried as well they should be.

Timmy, if your feelings were hurt by Rilkefan's poem, I apologize for making fun. But I was seriously impressed - a splendid bit of parody, I thought.

Jes, thanks, but I don't think I'll be writing verse about you - for starters, I don't know how to scan your handle. And while TtWD has a thick pelt, ...

"Hey, praktike, how did you like the vote in January and the assasination in Lebannon, those Iranian fascists seem to be worried as well they should be."

The vote was a success, though it ought to have been held much earlier. It's not a panacea, but it does seem to have helped.

I suspect Iran had a hand in the Hariri murder.

All of this has been covered on my blog.

praktike, is there an easy version of your blog for beginners?

Grommit, my points are very explicit and short to the point. The word "Duranty" says volumes as does Wallace, just ask hilzoy if you need further explanation.

If it's not too much trouble, humor me, Timmy. I'd like to hear your points from your own fingers, rather than ask others to explain them for you. Hopefully it will avoid some misunderstandings.

Ok Gromit, Duranty exalted Stalin along with a good portion of the "elite left" of this country along with Europe, while Stalin was mudering seven million Ukranians. Whereas Wallace opposed Truman's dealings with the Soviets including the Marshall Plan. Thus, both were on the "wrong side of history".

if your feelings were hurt by Rilkefan's poem

Not to worry Jes, but I am surprised that Rilke Dude, forgot the fire hydrant verse, as it adds clarity to the overall subject.

Praktike, not the first time that Iranians have been involved nor will it be the last. I missed that historical perspective in your blog. Yes, I do read it but never comment.

Timmy, suggestions welcome. I tend to try to avoid the very simplest associations, and "hydrant" is hard to rhyme.

Rhymes for "hilzoy" also welcomed. Don't think I know CB well enough to try my hand at his portrait - maybe the local conservatives could give it a shot?

Hilzoy: alroy, annoy, ball boy, bat boy, bok choi, bok choy, bolshoi, deboy, decoy, dejoy, deploy, destroy, elroy, employ, enjoy, farm boy, flournoy, laboy, lacroix, lafoy, lavoy, malloy, mccloy, mccoy, mckoy, mcroy, mcvoy, old boy, polloi, poor boy, quemoy, rob roy, savoy, shop boy, wolf boy

(and that's just the two-sylable rhymes)

Rhyming dictionaries are great.

Jes, in my mind at least "hilzoy" is a feminine word, the last syllable being unaccented, and classically that means both syllables should be rhymed, which has a somewhat comic effect, screwing up the ode or whatever. However, I did just think of a suitable word imported from French.

Off to look up "flournoy"...

However, I did just think of a suitable word imported from French.

OK, you've given me my puzzle for the day. The closest I've come to a true rhyme so far is "Kilroy".

Hmm, ken - are you saying the rhyme words should have the same last syllable? I should go page through _Les Fleurs du Mal_ or Byron and check. The word I had in mind was "mille-feuille".

The word I had in mind was "mille-feuille".

I'm glad you gave that one to me -- I'd never heard of it. Would've been a lot of wasted brain-racking.

are you saying the rhyme words should have the same last syllable?

Depends what you mean by "should", but that's my working assumption. And other people's too, I guess -- otherwise, "silver" wouldn't be considered a hard-to-rhyme word.

"Would've been a lot of wasted brain-racking."

You might have come up with a better rhyme - still may.

p.s. no seques to torture on poetry threads.

And I shouldn't try to write even light verse on the fly.

Depends on how big the fly is, and how fast he's moving.

I have to say that when I wrote that last comment, it wasn't with the intention of it driving everyone to flee screaming from comments.

Slart, I was the one that killed the thread, really. Standard reaction to verse - "that's nice, now let me go far as possible away". I laughed at your fly joke, but "heh heh" is not an insightful comment.

I laughed at your fly joke, but "heh heh" is not an insightful comment.

Comparatively? I wouldn't be so sure ;)

Definitely, the second syllable is unaccented. (At least, I've always thought so.) And now, at last, thanks to rilkefan, I know that there is a connection between me and Napoleon, albeit a tenuous one.

And now, at last, thanks to rilkefan, I know that there is a connection between me and Napoleon, albeit a tenuous one.

Has anyone, as a term of endearment, ever referred to you as "my little gaulette"?

Would you like us to start?

I'm going to assume, from your silence, that the answer is no. ;)

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