Ludens Locutus

 

“Ludens Locutus” (or something similar, correct me if you like, it’s been a while), can be loosely translated into having “spoken a joke,” and it’s a common enough trope these days that I think it needs to be called out as some sort of flourish, rhetorical at best, cowardly at worst.

The latest person to jump aboard the Ludens Locutus Locomotive is our friend AOC, who’s now claiming that her unequivocal, like, statement that the, like, world is going to, like, end in, like, twelve years (giving her a bit of wiggle room to say, like, eleven or thirteen), was a joke all along, and we are nothing but a bunch of unsophisticated morons for not spotting her mordant wit. Since she made the original statement in January, I don’t believe she’s distanced herself from it at all, and she’s doubled down a few times to the effect that if we have not reduced greenhouse gases by at least 50% by 2030, we’re done.

But this, yesterday:

I don’t know who “Dwight from The Office” is. But I do know that no-one who was present laughed when she made that statement, (including AOC herself, nor did her interviewer, Ta-Nehisi Coates, who was nodding his head and murmuring approval all the way), nor was there a “pause” during which expected laughter might occur. (There was a pause for vigorous applause.) I also know that when she was challenged on it after the fact by those who disagreed with her, she said in an Instagram post: “for everyone who wants to make a joke about that, you may laugh, but your grandkids will not.” It appeared, until yesterday, that she was perfectly happy for us all to take her literally, as well as seriously. Salena Zito, please call your office, and perhaps you can sort this out.

Come to find out the underpinnings of her statement appear to be a UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Report from October of last year which states that we Earthlings have until 2030 to turn our handcart around, otherwise we’ll be at the Point. Of. No. Return. and droughts, floods, extreme heat, and worldwide poverty will be the irreversible result. Literally. Something you might think that AOC could point to today, to at least back up her January assertion that something really, really bad is going to happen in twelve years.

But, never mind that. United Nations, meet bus wheels. She was totally funning.

Perhaps someone has finally impressed on her giant brain (which I’m sure is considerably larger than that my sea sponge-sized one, and even larger than a grain of rice) that she made a total fool of herself, that she’ll look ridiculous when snippets of that interview are played in next year’s campaign ads, and that most of us, even assuming her worst-case fever dream, will still be alive to call her to account in early 2031 when the bill comes due.

So, after letting her version of “settled science” sit out there since January sometime, instead of womaning up and saying, “you know what? I made a mistake, my data were flawed and I was wrong,” or “you know what, I exaggerated some, but look, here’s the UN IPCC Report I was referencing,” or even saying something like, “yeah, I stand by my conclusions but I collapsed the time frame a bit, it’s going to be more like 150 years” (a much safer bet in that we’ll all be dead by then), she decided to lash out at, and insult, all those whose time she’s been wasting in the intervening months, and then do an Emily Litella.

Pro Tip for AOC, and anyone else who occasionally puts their foot in their mouth by speaking without thinking, or saying things they might later wish they’d left unsaid (incorporating DJT and a few others by reference): If people take what you say at face value and try to answer your concerns or engage with your argument, just fess up and say you misspoke. Or, if you actually were joking, say that you were joking. Right then. Don’t waste other people’s time and energy. And don’t wait more than four months, or eighteen, or twenty-four months, to see if you can get away with it, or until you realize you’re looking like a booby, or until you decide it’s not advantageous to defend your position any more, and then pretend it was all a joke, while mocking and insulting the intelligence and perceived lack of sophistication of those who didn’t spot your brilliant, dry, sarcastic, wit all that time ago, or those who’ve been trying to have a rational conversation with you about it. Nobody’s going to laugh when you do that. Not your supporters, who’ve gone out on a limb for you and who’ll feel betrayed. And not your detractors, who’ve wasted their time marshaling arguments against you and who’ll think you’re a jerk.

And they’ll both be right.

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There are 24 comments.

  1. Contributor

    I was going to confess to my idiotic statements in advance, before they slipped out and I put both feet in. Didn’t seem to work.

    • #1
    • May 13, 2019, at 11:59 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  2. Thatcher
    She Post author

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    I was going to confess to my idiotic statements in advance, before they slipped out and I put both feet in. Didn’t seem to work.

    A pre-emptive strike! I love the idea!

    • #2
    • May 13, 2019, at 12:02 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  3. Moderator

    This comes to mind:

    • #3
    • May 13, 2019, at 12:07 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  4. Thatcher
    She Post author

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    This comes to mind:

    lol

    • #4
    • May 13, 2019, at 12:13 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  5. Member

    What will be funny is watching how the other democrat presidential contenders react, since they jumped on the bandwagon she was driving with her ‘joke’. Including “Beto” who upped it to 10 years.

    • #5
    • May 13, 2019, at 1:12 PM PDT
    • 11 likes
  6. Thatcher

    Don’t you guys get it?

    It’s soooo funny!

    • #6
    • May 13, 2019, at 1:36 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  7. Member

    Now I don’t particularly follow AOC, but I am not aware that she is known for “dry humor” and “sarcasm.” Every time I see her, she seems to be trying to be very earnest. And everybody around her seems to take her as earnest. So why should we believe that this one time she was being different from her normal persona?

    When we repeatedly hear speakers, we develop a sense for how we should hear them. Some are known for sarcasm, so we factor that in – but we have to know them for that. Everybody knows that President Trump is prone to hyperbole and exaggeration, so we factor that into what we hear from him.

    If AOC expects people to believe that she uses “dry humor” and “sarcasm,” she needs to use it more often, and not wait five months after a statement to tell us what it was.

    • #7
    • May 13, 2019, at 1:44 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  8. Moderator

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    Now I don’t particularly follow AOC, but I am not aware that she is known for “dry humor”

    Moreover, the sponge that serves for her brain needs to be kept wet to function. If her humor dries it out, she’s done for.

    • #8
    • May 13, 2019, at 2:51 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  9. Member

    Percival (View Comment):

    Don’t you guys get it?

    It’s soooo funny!

    True. But not the way she thinks it is.

    • #9
    • May 13, 2019, at 3:22 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  10. Thatcher

    Rep. Ocasio-Cortez?

    You need to work on your comedic delivery. You gotta sell the joke.

    • #10
    • May 13, 2019, at 3:27 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  11. Thatcher
    She Post author

    Percival (View Comment):

    Rep. Ocasio-Cortez

    You need to work on your comedic delivery. You gotta sell the joke.

    Yep. Also. What is that sticker on the bottom of her shoe?

    • #11
    • May 13, 2019, at 3:34 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  12. Thatcher

    She (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):

    Rep. Ocasio-Cortez

    You need to work on your comedic delivery. You gotta sell the joke.

    Yep. Also. What is that sticker on the bottom of her shoe?

    Other end up?

    • #12
    • May 13, 2019, at 3:47 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  13. Lincoln

    Here’s the problem for AOC attempting (if she is) to mimic the Trump penchant for hyberbole — while the media will no doubt now take Zito’s “seriously, not literally” explanation for Trump that they were loathe to agree with during the 2016 campaign and be perfectly happy to employ it in defense of Ocasio-Cortez for any and all of her past and future statements, Trump had a 38-year history in the public eye of being hyperbolic, and was doing it for the most part outside of politics. It was part of his overall schtick, so while accusing Ted Cruz’s dad of being part of the JFK assassination was really abominable, Trump going all-in on past hyperbolic feuds with people like Rosie O’Donnell was part of his persona that was baked into the equation.

    AOC has introduced herself to the world by being a hyperbolic progressive scold, and is known for nothing but being a hyperbolic progressive scold. There’s little else in her background that’s all that interesting other then the contradiction of her Westchester upbringing and her attempts to downplay that as if she’s Alex from the Bronx (and, of course, TV likes her face and body). She might have finally gotten it through her head to be less of a hyperbolic scold with her recent walk-back tweet and will be more cautious in her future statements; but more than likely she simply wants the ability to make absurd claims and then pretend she didn’t mean them when she gets challenged over her absurd claims.

    If you’re known for nothing outside of politics, that’s a tough way to build a broad base of support outside of the True Believers, even if the media is willing to give you perpetual Mulligans for every inane thing you say (and even some of the media outlets have their limits, as seen today when even CNN refused to provide cover for Rashida Tlaib’s claim that nobody was more wonderful to the Jews than the Palestinian leadership during World War II).

    • #13
    • May 13, 2019, at 4:00 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  14. Coolidge
    TBA

    I liked Sarah Palin well enough and I imagine she was an adequate governor. She was out of her depth as a VP Candidate (but not the idiot she was portrayed as). 

    AOC is way out of her depth. She would have made a fine community organizer, or other political functionary who worked under the powerful and talked to actual people. 

    Both of these women were attractive and both come off as not especially intelligent and not politically savvy. 

    The GoP ‘got away with’ the following things; running a green, semi-sophisitcated attractive newbie female, “seriously but not literally”, and provocative twitter claims. 

    AOC figures she can get away with this stuff too. Maybe she can. But she is a fool if she thinks we’re going to say, ‘well, fair’s fair’. Besides which, she really does say and believe complete falsehoods. 

    Perky ‘n’ gullible is not likely to be a winning strategy until enough of the polity are comparably gullible. 

    I’d give it one, maybe two generations. 

    • #14
    • May 13, 2019, at 5:51 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  15. Coolidge

    I will say that she mostly stuck with the wording of “12 years to turn it around” to avoid catastrophe at a future date. But she was not consistent and she gladly misled children to thinking they are all going to die in 12 years. What a horrible person it is that misleads children to have no hope. AOC deserves all the ridicule we can heap upon her. I just hope this whole global warming hoax disintegrates like her political career is.

    • #15
    • May 13, 2019, at 7:44 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  16. Member

    I can’t wait to find out that the “Green New Deal” is actually the name of the script for a “Green Acres” redo with Zachary Levi and Yvonne Strahovski (from the TV show Chuck) reprising the roles of Oliver Wendell and Lisa Douglas.

    • #16
    • May 13, 2019, at 9:38 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  17. Member
    LC

    Not relevant to your post, but I definitely read my own name when I read this title. 

    • #17
    • May 14, 2019, at 9:50 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  18. Member

     

    Keith Rice (View Comment):

    I can’t wait to find out that the “Green New Deal” is actually the name of the script for a “Green Acres” redo with Zachary Levi and Yvonne Strahovski (from the TV show Chuck) reprising the roles of Oliver Wendell and Lisa Douglas.

    Who plays Arnold Ziffel?

    • #18
    • May 14, 2019, at 9:53 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  19. Member

    Arnold was actually an acute commentator on the world of entertainment. I remember one show in which he sat on the sofa watching the front-loading washing machine because the family TV was broken.

    • #19
    • May 14, 2019, at 10:09 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  20. Thatcher

    LC (View Comment):

    Not relevant to your post, but I definitely read my own name when I read this title.

    Me too.

    • #20
    • May 14, 2019, at 10:16 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  21. Member

    Podkayne of Israel (View Comment):

     

    Keith Rice (View Comment):

    I can’t wait to find out that the “Green New Deal” is actually the name of the script for a “Green Acres” redo with Zachary Levi and Yvonne Strahovski (from the TV show Chuck) reprising the roles of Oliver Wendell and Lisa Douglas.

    Who plays Arnold Ziffel?

    I’m seeing an expanded role here for Alf and Ralph, the Monroe Bros.

    • #21
    • May 14, 2019, at 10:36 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  22. Member

    Poor little thing, I have some pity for her. Maybe even a little sympathy, but I’ve never been a halfwit or hormonally imbalanced so I recognize that’s a bit of a reach – perhaps I’m anthropomorphizing. 

    Don’t think I’m excusing her. She’s clearly a shallow twit and casual liar.

    But AOC is a catspaw. Imagine how Chakrabati felt when he discovered her on that stool at Schwab’s Drug Store and … yeah, I got that a little wrong but given the subject it’s ok to go with it … imagine all the little Good Fortune! fireworks going off in his head … ok, cultural appropriation mismatch, sue me. …

    Attention-grabbing face, check! (Boy, I’ll say.) Eyes like Marty Feldman had when he played that X-Men character with the visor, check! And headlights too, I mean lookit that video! Save the hi-beams, double check! And she’s highly verbal, got a 105 IQ, and the self-confidence of a hothouse orchid like Arianna Grande or something. I gotta phone Mr. Soros …

    AOC does what she’s told, in exchange for the giddy high of imagining herself to be consequential. It’d be a fun exercise for some bored congressman (or more likely a staffer) with an intellect (there are a few) to start picking off her “staff”, who program her. With the right pressure on the puppeteers, we could have her agitating for slavery reparations in the form of Liberian real estate grants. (I just made that up to illustrate something objectionable. If I were going to try to spoof the AOC drone I’d do something more moral and consequential, but I’m not telling you what it is until I find just the right catspaw …

    • #22
    • May 14, 2019, at 12:22 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  23. Thatcher
    She Post author

    Barfly (View Comment):

    Attention-grabbing face, check! (Boy, I’ll say.) Eyes like Marty Feldman had when he played that X-Men character with the visor, check! And headlights too, I mean lookit that video! Save the hi-beams, double check! And she’s highly verbal, got a 105 IQ, and the self-confidence of a hothouse orchid like Arianna Grande or something. I gotta phone Mr. Soros …

     

    The eyes are bothersome, but I find the teeth, and the way she flashes them like the winner of The Grand National the Kentucky Derby (sorry, my Brit privilege is showing) even more disturbing.

    I’m also assuming she made this latest move exactly because her handlers told her to.

    • #23
    • May 14, 2019, at 2:50 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  24. Member

    Barfly (View Comment):
    Eyes like Marty Feldman had when he played that X-Men character with the visor,

    Wasn’t Marty Feldman Igor in Young Frankenstein?

    • #24
    • May 14, 2019, at 3:01 PM PDT
    • 1 like