Aphorismus

Aphorismus ( a-phor-is’-mus): Calling into question the proper use of a word.

Alternative facts? There is no such thing. If there’s more than one version of a fact, only one can be right. Or, in the process of establishing a statement as a fact it might be ok to use “alternative” as a part of the process, but in the end, there can only be one version of a fact–that’s what makes it a fact as well as true.

So, developing a narrative on the basis of “alternative facts” that seeks to substitute them for the appropriately established facts in support of conclusions that would otherwise be untenable, is evil. In a way it substitutes opinion for fact–so properly understood alternative facts may rightfully be called opinions masquerading as facts. To call opinions facts is wrong: it gives them an aura of incontestability that they don’t deserve.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Apocarteresis

Apocarteresis (a-po-car-ter’-e-sis): Casting of all hope away from one thing and placing it on another source altogether.

I’ve been a vegetarian for the past 10 years. I am tired of drooling over hamburgers, lamb chops, pepperoni, roast beef, liver, kidneys, bacon, ham, steak of all kinds, goat, turkey, chicken, and all the rest of the bleeding protein that I see inhabiting dinner plates everywhere but the vegetarian diner.

I’m tired of feeling like a frustrated rabbit, a groundhog in a field, a cow in a barn, a deer in the woods, a pig in a sty, a sheep on a hillside, a goose on a pond, a rabbit in a hole.

I WANT MEAT: juicy, steaming slabs of animal flesh. Goodbye kale! Hello barbecued ribs! Goodbye Fakin’ Bacon! Hello New York Strip! Goodbye tofu!  Hello Big Mac.

That’s it! I’m changing my life from meatless to meatfull.

See you at the steakhouse.  I hope to be sitting behind a platter of meat!

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Apocope

Apocope (a-pok’-o-pe): Omitting a letter or syllable at the end of a word. A kind of metaplasm.

I’m goin’ to the movies. Are you comin’ along? I want to see the new movie about the zombies that run a used car lot in the desert outside LA. I think it’s goin’ to be a fantas’ film. They specialize in Hyundais. Most people who go there to buy a car never return. That’s what you’d expect! It is WHY they don’t return that you’d never expect.  Well are you comin’? We can take my Hyundai–the one with the blood on th’ back seat. Ha ha! Just kidding!

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Apodioxis

Apodioxis (ap-o-di-ox’-is): Rejecting of someone or something (such as the adversary’s argument) as being impertinent, needless, absurd, false, or wicked.

Every time I hear Obama talking about feeding the homeless, or some other social welfare scheme, I want to puke. He says we should do it because it is our “Christian duty.” I don’t know what Christ he’s talking about! Jesus always charged a reasonable fee–in fact–he was so good, such a perfect guy, that he had a sliding scale. Jesus never gave anything away for free. If he had, nobody would’ve respected him and we wouldn’t have institutionalized the sliding scale.  The famous Biblical verse sums it up: “Chargeth them no less than what they can affordeth.” Of course, the sliding scale has prompted virtually all businesspeople to do business solely with the middle- and upper-classes.

It is the will of God.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Apodixis

Apodixis (a-po-dix’-is): Proving a statement by referring to common knowledge or general experience.

They say if you grease yourself up with Vaseline, it’s just like having warm clothes on, even though you’re naked. I’ve heard of a few people trying it out & having it work.

I’m going to slather on a couple jars of Vaseline and go out to the mailbox naked and check the mail. It’s -24, so it’ll be a good test of the Vaseline “theory.” I’ve heard about it so many times it’s got to be true. Let’s find out!

20 Minutes Later:

Hello, 911? My husband went outside naked about 20 minutes ago to check the mail. He hasn’t come back yet. I have a leg problem and can’t go outside, or I’d try to find him. Can you come over and check on him? He’s naked and all shiny from Vaseline.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Apophasis

Apophasis (a-pof’-a-sis): The rejection of several reasons why a thing should or should not be done and affirming a single one, considered most valid.

Should I buy another disco ball?

1. No–I’ll have to get an additional ceiling fixture installed.

2. No–Six disco balls throw a lot of sparkle. One more will probably burn a hole in the wall.

3. No–Seven disco balls will probably distract people from listening to the amazing music–especially the Bee Gees and Barry Manilow.

4. No–disco balls are addictive. I get a splitting headache whenever I turn them off.

You know–I’ve got six disco balls already, one more won’t do any serious harm–financially or psychologically. I’m heading to “Disco Nick’s 70s Cornucopia.” He sells white suits, white shoes, and disco balls. I’m going to splurge and get a three-footer. I will put it over my bed so it can sparkle-flash me to sleep every night.

I love disco balls! Let there be light!

disco_ball_cut_out_by_wilddflowerr.png

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Apoplanesis

Apoplanesis (a-po-plan’-e-sis): Promising to address the issue but effectively dodging it through a digression.

Q: What can you tell us about the so-called “Russian connection”?

A: I can tell you a little bit–it’s about connections. We live in a world where we are entwined together. We are all connected in some way. I believe these ‘connections’ are largely the result of social media’s ubiquity. Why, I can feel my phone vibrating in my pocket right now! Ha ha!

Q: Thank you very much.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Aporia

Aporia (a-po’-ri-a): Deliberating with oneself as though in doubt over some matter; asking oneself (or rhetorically asking one’s hearers) what is the best or appropriate way to approach something [=diaporesis].

I keep asking myself: “What should you do?” This Korean dictator has really made me angry–especially the comments about being old and fat. How can I respond to what he says? If I keep my mouth shut, I’ll look like a wimp, but if I say anything to him it seems to just bounce off–this guy’s impervious to verbal abuse. I can’t invade North Korea–what a mess, and very costly. So, what’s left? Try to make peace? Again, I’ll look like a wimp if I try to butter him up.  I need to maintain my tough guy persona–my base loves it and it looks great in the mirror in my bathroom. Hmmmm? So–oh–why didn’t I think of it before? Nuke him and his poverty stricken, disease ridden little dictatorship–nuke them out of existence. That’s the answer, right? Nuke him! That nation-dump will be incinerated in a minute.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Aposiopesis

Aposiopesis (a-pos-i-o-pee’-sis): Breaking off suddenly in the middle of speaking, usually to portray being overcome with emotion.

Person: You . . .  You’re President Trump! I can’t believe I’ve met you here . . . right here at Bear Bottoms! Best pole dancing club in Utah. Can I buy you a drink?

Him: No. Hmmm, uh, I thought this was a national monument–I’m looking for Bears Ears, not bottoms. I must’ve taken a wrong turn back there in Salt Lake City somewhere.

Person: But this is clearly a bar–and a sleazy one at that!  How could you possibly mistake it for a pair of mesas out in the middle of nowhere?

Him: Security! Take this guy for a walk.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Apostrophe

Apostrophe (a-pos’-tro-phe): Turning one’s speech from one audience to another. Most often, apostrophe occurs when one addresses oneself to an abstraction, to an inanimate object, or to the absent.

There was a time when we had faith in you cruel Democracy!

We were naive to think that our will would prevail in a world soaked with stupidity, malice, prejudice and fear: Stupidity, Malice, Prejudice and Fear–you are the death knell of democracy’s hope. As you circle freedom’s skies tolling loudly, drowning out the sounds of love, optimism, charity and peace people look up to you, able only to hear your rumbling spite-filled proclamations.

When the peoples’ will is rotten, where do we turn to save democracy’s soul? We turn to you Democracy! To persuasion. To truth. To the light of day and the bright guiding stars of night.

Together, we shall close the abyss and pave the way toward better days: days that celebrate our faith in “we the people” and the mysterious bonds of friendship and trust that can bind us together without without tying us down: that can fulfill our need for autonomy and connectedness: my need for me and our need for us.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Apothegm

Apothegm (a’-po-th-e-gem): One of several terms describing short, pithy sayings. Others include adage, gnomemaximparoemiaproverb, and sententia.

If it’s illegal, or you don’t have the time or energy, but you just don’t want to completely quit, remember the old saying, “If you can’t beat ’em, slap ’em around a little bit.” A few well-placed little owies can prove a point with just about anybody!

Whatever you do, don’t follow this advice: “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.” Many a bleeding-heart reformist went down this road, and where did they end up? Ask Patricia Hearst. Benedict Arnold? Guy Fawkes? Wang Jingwei?

Take my advice and you won’t become a traitor, or more important, you won’t turn against yourself.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Appositio

Appositio (ap-po-sit’-i-o): Addition of an adjacent, coordinate, explanatory or descriptive element.

What’s going to happen next in national politics as we trudge into 2018. That is, there is so much up in the air with legal problems that it can’t be juggled or shot down! Most of it circles around pre-election Russian involvement with the White House–AKA President Trump and his Administration and their attempt to work with Russia to influence the election in President Trump’s favor.

I am looking forward to all of it being decided so it no longer provides the context for interpreting the motive of nearly everything the President does.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Ara

Ara (a’-ra): Cursing or expressing detest towards a person or thing for the evils they bring, or for inherent evil.

Donald Trump: Satan’s minion. Damn everything that you have done and damn you too! There is not one measure you’ve enacted or piece of legislation you have supported that resonates with your supposed Christian values. For example, which Christian value does taking Medicaid benefits away from children adhere to? Faith? Hope? Charity? Loving your neighbor? Loving God with all your heart?

As Chief Counsel Joseph Welch said to Senator Joe McCarthy: “Have you no sense of decency?”

Look in the mirror: you are going to hell Mr. Sinner-in-Chief. You have no sense of decency.

Repent and change your sinful ways before it is too late! Get down on your knees and beg for your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to enter your heart and fill it with love, and cleanse your soul of its wickedness, greed, and vanity. For the sake of your family. For the sake of the USA. For the sake of the world. Repent!

Jesus will hear your prayer of salvation. Say it!

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Articulus

Articulus (ar-tic’-u-lus): Roughly equivalent to “phrase” in English, except that the emphasis is on joining several phrases (or words) successively without any conjunctions (in which case articulus is simply synonymous with the Greek term asyndeton). See also brachylogia.

Articulus is also best understood in terms of differing speeds of style that depend upon the length of the elements of a sentence. The Ad Herennium author contrasts the the slower speed of concatenated membra (see membrum) to the quicker speed possible via articulus.

The Trumps!

Ivanka. Donald. Donald Jr. Melania. Tiffany. Barron. Eric.

The Trumps!

Ivanka is lovely and greedy.

Donald is lost.

Donald Jr. needs a few more visits to the orthodontist.

Melania wants a divorce.

Tiffany is a mystery.

Barron looks tired and malnourished.

Eric is terminally clueless.

The Trumps!

Definition and commentary courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Aschematiston

Aschematiston: The use of plain, unadorned or unornamented language. Or, the unskilled use of figurative language. A vice. [Outside of any particular context of use or sense of its motive, it may be difficult to determine what’s “plain, unadorned or unornamented language.” The same is true of the “unskilled use of figurative language.”]

1. Today is Wednesday. Tomorrow is Thursday. Then comes Friday. Friday is payday. Starting at 5.00pm, it is the best day of the week. It’s when the Senators and Representatives take off their shirts and hang around the mall.

2. The sky is clouded with big clouds, like floating Brillo pads hovering over bedsheets of snow. Winter has arrived and I am headed to the air-conditioned wonderland brimming with swimming pool hopes and coconut pies. It’s like watching a puppy wag its tail. Mexico, here I come!

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu). Bracketed text added by Gorgias.

Asphalia

Asphalia (as-fay’-li-a): Offering oneself as a guarantee, usually for another.

To Whom It May Concern:

I can vouch for my nephew Sid. On the surface he looks like a dishonest, violent, reprobate. Those things that he’s done are completely out of character! I know Sid and he would have a good reason for “beating up” his girlfriend–we don’t have to know anything more than what he’s told us and one thing’s for sure Sid’s not a liar.  He’s pretty small and self-defense seems like a reasonable motive–somehow the little guy won the round this time. He must’ve figured out some winning boxing moves.

In short, Sid is a good boy.

As you probably know, I am writing this from my cell at Ossining. So, you know I have nothing to gain by lying, as I have been completely reformed and helping my nephew out of a scrape will never count toward my parole.

If I’m wrong about Sid, add another 10 years to my sentence! I (a beacon of good behavior) stand behind Sid 1,000 percent. Trust me! I wouldn’t con you!

Yours truly,

Ponzi

Ponzi McDough

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Assonance

Assonance (ass’-o-nance): Repetition of similar vowel sounds, preceded and followed by different consonants, in the stressed syllables of adjacent words.

You’ve heard it before: “The truth will set you free.” It’ll get you more than you can see. For the truth itself goes unseen, except perhaps when a word like “justice” is printed on a page. It doesn’t take a sage to know that truth’s ‘exemplars’ can cause rage as the accounts of exemplars are conflicted and must be argued out: but even then, the anger may rise higher and higher like like a fire until the conflicted accounts burn themselves out, consume their proponents in disagreement’s flames, burst forth in sparks of persuasion as one party’s mind changes, or gently warm the arguers with the glow of  humanity and acceptance of their mutual fallibility.

The truth will set you free when you embrace your imperfection.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Assumptio 

Assumptio (as-sump’-ti’o): The introduction of a point to be considered, especially an extraneous argument. See proslepsis (When paralipsis [stating and drawing attention to something in the very act of pretending to pass it over] is taken to its extreme. The speaker provides full details.).

I’m not going to talk about the Department of State–what’s left of it. A bunch of positions haven’t been filled and diplomats are being fired right and left. The hallways are empty. Might as well turn off the power and shut the place down.

This brings up the question: How are government agencies staffed? What kind of rationales (if any) need to be developed to grow or shrink them? How is an agency’s mission factored into its staffing, or elimination altogether? What are the puts and takes connected to staffing and restaffing?

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Asteismus 

Asteismus (as-te-is’-mus): Polite or genteel mockery. More specifically, a figure of reply in which the answerer catches a certain word and throws it back to the first speaker with an unexpected twist. Less frequently, a witty use of allegory or comparison, such as when a literal and an allegorical meaning are both implied.

Paul R.: I would never collude with the Russians!

Adam S.: You better hope you’re right or you’ll never get out of prison.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Astrothesia

Astrothesia (as-tro-the’-si-a): A vivid description of stars. One type of enargia.

To be outside and to look up on a cold clear November night is to see a sky filled with twinkling stars. They will take your breath away if you let them: especially if you look at the Milky Way–a carpet of fiery points pointing everywhere, close together, seeming like lighted milk spilled across the sky.

Stars. There, every clear night. An inexhaustible source of wonder, faith, and joy.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

 

Asyndeton

Asyndeton (a-syn’-de-ton): The omission of conjunctions between clauses, often resulting in a hurried rhythm or vehement effect. [Compare brachylogia. Opposite of polysyndeton.]

Hope. Fear. Love. Hate. Life. Death. Now. Never. We are morally, intellectually, experientially buffeted by opposites all of our lives. Without knowing or caring we rarely hit the extremes. Rather, we just hum along until we are jolted by life’s unpredictable exigences & it may be the unpredictability that vexes us the most. It tears at our agency and leaves us to choose how to understand what we can’t control–to face a terrible omen that is void of intrinsic meaning and bereft of any guiding indices: that may be interpreted, but never known.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu). Bracketed text added by Gorgias.

Auxesis

Auxesis (ok-see’-sis): (1) Arranging words or clauses in a sequence of increasing force. In this sense, auxesis is comparable to climax and has sometimes been called incrementum.  (2) A figure of speech in which something is referred to in terms disproportionately large (a kind of exaggeration or hyperbole). (3) Amplification in general.

(1.) Work, earn, save, retire, die. Each one of these words is filled with so much meaning a book could be written about them. Words are like that: they are spacious.

(2.) The humble ant is a mighty powerhouse of strength, a shining exemplar of courage, and a perfectly meshed team player. However, all you need to do step on the little insect, and that’s the end of that.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

 

Bdelygmiabdel

Bdelygmia (del-ig’-mi-a): Expressing hatred and abhorrence of a person, word, or deed.

Everything about you is either disgusting or laughable. Your hair looks like frozen yellow tinsel (probably stolen from the Dollar Store) tacked to your head with duct tape or staples.

You have told so many lies that most people have stopped taking you seriously or listening to you at all. Maybe that’s why you like Big Whoppers so much: they’re named after your favorite way of speaking. 

It is impossible to imagine where this raft of flotsam called the ‘administration’ is headed. Maybe it’ll go missing in the Bermuda Triangle or run aground in the Bering Strait–somewhere near Провиде́ния (Provideniya).

Anyway, I just wish you’d resign.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Bomphiologia

Bomphiologia (bom-phi-o-lo’-gi-a): Exaggeration done in a self-aggrandizing manner, as a braggart.

Good evening.

A brief update on how I am making America great again!

I’ve made a lot of work for attorneys at the FBI–that’s great for the economy! I’ve scared the crap out of the American people–all worried about being blown up by some crazy North Korean dictator! That’s good for the pharmaceutical industry–all those tranquilizers being sold! It’s good for the psychology business too! Everybody’s trying to figure out how to manage their fear and they are using an unprecedented number of professional counselors! Sales of gin and vodka are up 300% as people try to numb their senses and calm their nerves the old fashioned way!

Those are just a few of my fantastic and definitely positive accomplishments–the actual list of accomplishments stretches from here to Russia (via the internet).  That’s pretty far and it is awesomely beautiful like my wife, my money, and my hair.

A big thumbs up to me! Almost singlehandedly, I’m making America great again!

In summary, stay tuned tomorrow for my unbelievably amazing plan for citizens 70 & over! Attention! No more waiting around for health care all you disgruntled seniors!

In conclusion, thank-you and God bless everything, with the exception of illegal immigrants, Democrats, and John McCain.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

Brachylogia

Brachylogia (brach-y-lo’-gi-a): The absence of conjunctions between single words. Compare asyndeton. The effect of brachylogia is a broken, hurried delivery.

Last year. Last month. Last week. Yesterday. This morning. This afternoon. This evening. Right now! I couldn’t stop wanting to go to Yankee Candle to buy some exotic scented candle to literally spice up what goes on around here when we’re alone together on a lonely country road in the front seat of my truck.

Those little pine tree hanger things really didn’t do the job and I was ready for a change.

So, look at my scented candle truck cab burner invention!

My only concern at this point is catching the truck’s cab on fire. That’s why I’ve made this tin-foil doohickey that looks like a little silver tent! If I’m right, and this works, I’ll make millions of dollars. I’ve named it the “Front Seat Fire Starter” after the passion it will arouse when lit!

Here, let’s fire up the prototype and see if we can set the front seat on fire!

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).