Monday, October 18, 2010

What is the Opposite of Regular?

Last night the question popped into my head: "What is the opposite of regular?"

It was past midnight and the trite answer "irregular" did not pop into my mind. Instead my mind grappled with the image of regularity. The goal of regulation is to impose uniformity and order.

The regulated is uniformed and ordered. So, the opposite of regularity is diversity.

Oddly, "regulation" and "diversity" are the two biggest buzz words in the progressive lexicon. Whenever a conservative argues for freedom, the left lets loose a squeal about how we need regulation. When conservatives concede and accept the need for regulation, progressives let loose with a squeal for diversity.

This game of screeching political slogans from opposite terms might be called oppositional dialectics. This game of spouting out opposing ideas appears rational and balanced to those who've never been exposed to logic, which, I guess, is why progressives pulled the study of logic from the curriculum.

I went to sleep with a steady stream of leftist professors, pundits and politicians screeching these opposing ideas as they systemically place a stranglehold on the American people.

A little tiny innocent voice asked in a soft tone "Why don't those evil Republicans recognize the need for regulation?"

To which my weary cynical voice responded: "When the right argues for regulation, the left immediately projects negative images on their partisan foe and calls for diversity."

The two great debates of 2010 are immigration and health care. The left wants to grab power in health care and demands regulation. On immigration, the right wants to enforce immigration law. The left counters by projecting false images of racism on the right and spouts off about diversity.

Accepting that diversity is the opposite of the regulated, we see that the left is simply using oppositional dialects in the grub for power. This is politics at its worse.

I see a few readers are not convinced that diversity is the opposite of regulated. While progressives were quick to yank logic from the curriculum, we did learn a little logic in the study of set theory.

In a system of regulation, those things which are uniformed and ordered are "regular." Those things that are not uniform and ordered are "irregular." The "regular" and "irregular" are disjointed sets.

The union of the regular and irregular is a diverse whole.

Sometimes regular is the opposite of irregular. A person with constipation is irregular, while one with good digestive health is regular.

However, the regular is not necessarily the opposite of the irregular. Let's say a regulated cookie jar has only round cookies. It would include regular cookies like Oreos or Chips Ahoy, but would exclude irregular cookies like Gingerbread Men.

A Gingerbread Man is not in any sort of conflict with Oreos. They both are great dunked in milk.

A regulated cookie jar is in opposition to a cookie jar that accepts the diverse whole of cookies.

The modern political lexicon is full of buzz words and false dichotomies. We would do well if we spent more time thinking about what the buzz words mean. The oppositional dialect that squeals the words ""diversity" and "regulation" for partisan ends usually does little more than lead to greater division.

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