Posts Tagged ‘The Devil’s Dictionary’


graphic by J.R. Swanson

FREE ENTERPRISE, n. A system in which a few are born owning billions, most are born owning nothing, and all compete to accumulate wealth and power. If those born with billions succeed, it is due to their personal merits. If those born owning nothing fail, it is due to their personal defects.

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— from The American Heretic’s Dictionary (revised & expanded), the 21st-century successor to Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary. (The link goes to 50 sample definitions and illustrations.)

American Heretic's Dictionary revised and expanded by Chaz Bufe, front cover


Ambrose Bierce

LABOR, n. One of the processes by which A acquires property for B.

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–from The Devil’s Dictionary, by Ambrose Bierce


Ambrose Bierce

DISOBEDIENCE, n. The silver lining to the cloud of servitude.

–Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary


REFORM, n. 1) Formerly, a measure designed to improve something already in existence, as in “The reform broadened Medicare coverage”; 2) Currently, a measure designed to worsen or eliminate something already in existence, as in “Tax Reform” and “A shotgun blast to the head reformed the recipient’s life expectancy.”

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–from the revised and expanded edition of The American Heretic’s Dictionary, the 21st-century successor to Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary. (The link goes to 50 sample definitions.)

 


BOOTLICKING, ger.  A popular American mass participation sport which is rapidly displacing baseball as the national pastime.

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– definition (not photo) from the revised and expanded edition of The American Heretic’s Dictionary, by Chaz Bufe, the best modern successor to Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary

American Heretic's Dictionary revised and expanded by Chaz Bufe, front cover


TOUGH, n. A term used by sycophants to describe powerful politicians, especially heads of state. It normally means: 1) callous; 2) having little regard for human life; 3) ready and willing to shed the blood of others while running no personal risk of injury.

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–from the revised and expanded edition of The American Heretic’s Dictionary, the best modern successor to Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary

 


americanism

AMERICANISM, n. 1) The desire to purge America of all those qualities that make it a more or less tolerable place in which to live; 2) The ability to simultaneously kiss ass, pay taxes, follow your boss’s orders, swallow a pay cut, piss in a cup, cower in fear of job loss, and brag about your freedom.

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–from the revised and expanded edition of The American Heretic’s Dictionary, the best modern successor to Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary

American Heretic's Dictionary revised and expanded by Chaz Bufe, front coverAmbrose