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The Dumbbell's Dictionary
Jack W. Richey
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criticism could be that herein are some areas/attributes/subjects that, when encountered,
will leave the moral reader to think that something is amiss. (I could, I suppose, extend
these definitions/ explications to present a follow-up to Emmett Tyrell’s „Liberal
Crackup,’ but I remain completely unqualified to make the attempt.) And again, that said,
some of my definitions are indeed whimsical, while others are not, far from not. As a
matter of fact, some are downright philosophical, dealing with both history and reality,
which does, of course exist, contrary to the teachings of all too many modern American
liberal philosophers. There are even a few autobiographical discursions.
But please bear in mind that, as little as my erudition may be, it is there, along with the
plays on words. Therefore, liberals and illiterates beware. I take no prisoners. I would,
however, hold out welcoming arms to any of you who are like-minded. There is, I firmly
believe, a benevolent universe inhabited by thinking beings. And please be aware that, by
mentioning thinking beings, I mean to stress that there are those of us who are able to
think logically and realistically, to think; which of course excludes most modern
If these definitions come across as somewhat acerbic, I hereby confess to having imbibed
some of the writings not only of Ambrose Bierce, but also those of H. L. Mencken, to say
nothing of the wonderful world of Albert J. Nock. I could, I suppose, mention the works
of such as William F. Buckley, Jr., and of course, Thomas Sowell. And, given the
enormousness of the task I have set myself, they do in fact appear in due time. And
believe me, they do appear.
Let me, however, be absolutely clear about one thing. And please bear with me on this.
Truth be told, as I said above, the entries that follow could, in most instances, be more
properly classified as explications rather than definitions. Any errors, And I have not
doubt that there are some are of course, mine. In any case, happy reading. I could, I
suppose, revert to the Latin „Mea Culpa.’ But I will not. I am fairly proud of what I have
put together here.
These definitions, explications, commentaries, have of course been influenced by far too
many inadvertent contributors for me to be able to list them here. That said, I have, where
appropriate and where I could, given attribution to especially significant sources. I
perhaps should note that the majority of these definitions/discursions are topical, but that
there is always room to delve into the historical, which I have had no hesitation in doing.
I consider the following, at least on one level, to be a many-layered essay on „Civilization
(especially American) and Its Discontents.’ (Pace Freud.) I have thrown in just enough
sillygisms from time to time to, I hope, lighten the load.
Finally, it should be recognized that I am no avatar of Garrison Keilor. Truth to tell, I did
not think that much of his „Lake Woebegone Days.’ Please do not see this work as an
attempt to follow in his footsteps.
Enough said. Let us proceed.
Aardvark, n. Aunteater, but not an uncle eater.