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What I hope you will help me with.

I want three types of words from you.

  1. I want your favorite positive words.

  2. I want words that strike you most negatively

  3. I want words that grab your attention.

The third list needs an example to say why it's not just list 1 or 2 or a combo.  Let's say you are interested in reproductive rights.  "Abortion" is not a "positive" word, probably, and it's not a "negative" word, certainly, but it's a word that grabs your attention... it's associated with something important.  My quick list after...

Don't waste time making the perfect list... just whatever comes to your mind in the time it takes to bring up a comment form, dump thoughts, and submit.

I'll do it in this spirit...

Some Positive Words: love, compassion, honesty, fact, funny, smart, opportunity, health, nature, open, clever, logic

Some Negative Words: war, hate, evil, worthless, dogma

Some Attention Words: impurity/purity, polution, environment, choice, freedom, speech, language, trend, impossible/possible, logic, and all my neg and pos words.

I have not offered a complete list.  Don't follow my bias, but to characterize the lists further I'd say:

Good Words: Words that put you in a positive frame of mind about what you are reading.

Bad Words: Words that put you in a negative frame of mind about what you are reading (when I read about something being "evil" or "war" I immediately get suspicious.  I don't much care for calling things evil or declaring "war" on things we want to minimize, eradicate or limit).

Attention Words: probably does include every positive and negative word... but is really a list of words that key you into the fact that perhaps the writer is writing on a favorite subject.  The concept of "purity" to me is a dangerous one... it's too cloudy to put in my positive words and have too much going for it to put in my negative words.  But it catchs my attention because the issues of purity are interesting to me (basically, purity of anything is impossible according to me), and also perk up my ears much like use of the words war... not as negatively, but I get suspicious.

Please don't let my list bias you... my ideal would be to have a wide range of perspectives represented...

Originally posted to pyrrho on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:12 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Rhetoric is bad (4.00)
    option is good
  •  response (4.00)
    Positive:
    Hope, Spirit, Happiness, Liberty, Support, Help, Cooperation, Unity, Transparency, Alliance, Friendship, Love, Dignity, Gay

    Negative:
    Death, Destruction, Greed, Ambivalence, Ignorance, Morality, Corruption, Idiocy, Hatred, Spite, Force, Powerless, Minority, Opression, Mandate

    Attention:
    Explosion, Nuclear, Terrorist, Death, Marriage, Struggle, Reform, Murder, Genocide, Win, Lose, Expose, Deny, Lie, Reject, Resign, Sign, Enact, React, Divide, Conquer, Destroy, Create, Break, Pact

  •  Favourites (4.00)
    Good - beer, kids, laughs, sleep, clean, whole, honest, thoughtful, fair,

    Bad - murder, selfish, vanity, greed,

    Attention - bold, justice, free

  •  a truncated list (4.00)
    the good: cheese, inquisitive, well-researched, eloquence, indubitably

    the bad: truculent, piffle, war-mongering, right-wing, Rush, OReilly, nukular, hate, racism, sexism, the -isms, "hip-hop sucks".

    the ugly: ugly, scientific, gin-joint, bioweapons, chemical warfare, ecological disaster.

    a very off-the-cuff list.

    Ask Copernicus about pushing limits.

    by Xray the Enforcer on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:13:56 PM PST

  •  more mind control? (4.00)
    I'll play anyway.

    Good: puppy, warm, heart, integrity, compassion, clarity

    Bad: shrill, harsh, entitlement, nukular, mandate

    Attention words: access, inclusive

    Just to name a few.

    All the snark that's fit to...er...pixelate? liberal street fight

    by Joan McCarter on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:22:37 PM PST

  •  Good word? (4.00)
    sunrise.

    This is a joke...right?

    by NYBri on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:25:23 PM PST

  •  How about.... (4.00)
    Positive words: share, open, fair, funny, happy, united, global, community, spiritual, cheers, accommodating, party, progress, holiday, sparkling, light, frivolous, freedom, rights, liberal, progressive, vacation, friend, colleagues, inspire

    Negative: sucks, evangelical, elite, evil, conservative, hypocrites

    Attention grabbers: evangelical, traitor, outrage, fundamentalist, spirit, family values, ethics, abuse, fanatic, liberty, liar, karma

  •  Words (4.00)
    Positive:  Bush Lost

    Negative:  Bush

    Attention Getting:  Bush lost

    "But your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore"--Prine Pay attention Georgie - 1300+ dead Americans, 100,000+ dead Iraqis, all on your head. WWJS?

    by Miss Blue on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:39:34 PM PST

  •  Short list (4.00)
    Good -- Justice, passion, honor, perseverance, noble, honest, fair, inspiring, glory

    Bad -- Extremist, dogmatic, terror, evil, death, strict, war, punitive

    Attention -- peace, philosophy, history, dedication, language

  •  "Resolute" tops my list of dislikes (4.00)
    It was used a lot in praise of George W. Bush. But Bush's resoluteness is better described as being pig-headed.

    In politics, sometimes the jackasses are on your side.

    by Dump Terry McAuliffe on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:41:14 PM PST

    •  'Resolute' (none)
      is one of the very first words I see each & every day, as it's stamped on the side of my excellent cast-iron woodstove (my only heat source) & therefore keeps its positive aspect for me. On the other hand, had my stove been dubbed 'Pigheaded' or 'Sociopathic & Intellectually Challenged' I'd opt for propane heating right quick.
  •  thanks so far (4.00)
    I'm really enjoying reading these comments.
  •  A Topical List (4.00)
    Bad:  corrupt(ion), dishonest, lie, bribery, misleading, secret, indicted, crony, whore....

    Good:  integrity, honest, responsible, open, truthful, disclosure, clean, champion....

    Attention:  scandal, expose, revelation, emerging pattern, controversy, challenge....

    Catch my drift?

    Don't ask a question unless you want to hear the answer.

    by Dallasdoc on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:47:25 PM PST

  •  Werdz :) (4.00)
    Good

    Life, Purpose, Honor

    Bad

    Hateful, Uncaring, Cruel

    Headliners

    (to) kill, (to) dishonor, (to) betray

    Examples

    Uncaring Republican leaders dishonor America by using tsunami disaster as a photo op.

    Bush frequent use of word 'kill' in foreign policy statements reflective of hateful purpose

    Lives of GIs spoiled, lost in Iraq the price of an uncaring neoconservative agenda

    Beware the Frumious Coultersnatch :)

    by cskendrick on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:57:07 PM PST

  •  My favorite word for describing for Rush L. (4.00)
    bloviate

    Not only does it mean "to speak pompously for a long time," but say the word slowly and think of the sounds...go, do it.

    The sounds have connotations of:

    bloated
    bovine
    irate

    Rarely in life do the poetic connotations of a word, its meaning and the subject blend into one massive whole.   Rush...bloviate.
    What more do we need?

    Chance favors the prepared mind.- Pasteur

    by Seoduwyn on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 02:59:37 PM PST

  •  Depending, naturally, on immediate context (none)
    but in general:
    Positive: justice, compassion, peace, solidarity, community, heart, humanity.
    Negative: evil, wholesome, rapture, crusade, egghead, terrris, Rove.
    Attention: feminist, racist, spiritual, values, environment, opiate, pretzel.
  •  I like (4.00)
    discourse; rational; equitable; tolerant; diversity; clarity; humanity; spectrum; correlation; levy.

    I don't like:

    Your list plus: deliver (on promises); guarantee; read my lips.

    What catches my attention is the unexpected, so, by definition, I can't think of an example.

  •  pyrrho (none)
    That is one of my favorite words.  When I see it, I know I'll be reading something good.

    Another is extremism - my favorite vice.

    I stand by my point in my diary today: I'd prefer that this not be a partisan blog, but it is and we should be honest about what this means.  And I stand by my tactics as well.  Actually it feels good to be writer not too concerned by what readers think, as all of my old fans are not in line with my point.  But I just wanted to say that I have been reading your comments, and I appreciate them and they (as always) make me think.  

  •  hmmmm.... (4.00)
    Good words: US President Wesley Clark

    Bad words: anything with Bush in it

    Attention getting: anything with Free in it, especially if used to mean I don't have to pay for it

    The ...Bushies... don't make policies to deal with problems. ...It's all about how can we spin what's happening out there to do what we want to do. Krugman

    by mikepridmore on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 03:18:01 PM PST

  •  suckered in (none)
    good: intrinsic, incisive, succulant, velvet, emerald, nuance, apex, epiphany, lush, lucious, vitriol, nurture, vicious,

    bad: conflate, zealout, extremism, dude, puffery, portly, secular, "the church", theocracy, suppress, conform, consumerism, world view

    attention-getting: paint-ball, dual processor, announcement, brain-exploding, new, improved, orifice

    this might be a good way to set up a dating service!

    All extremists are irrational and should be exposed

    by SeanF on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 03:23:05 PM PST

    •  correction (none)
      the hard part of doing this is deciphering words which you like for themselves, vs. the action or object depicted by the word. For example, I love the word "puffery" but hate when people do it. what category does that go in? I'd say good words.

      All extremists are irrational and should be exposed

      by SeanF on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 03:27:21 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  good question (none)
        but I think it should go in good words in the sort of context I presented... because the person using it is not exhibiting it but identifying it... so it put you in a positive frame of mind considering the author is probably anti-puffery.

        food for thought though.

  •  apoplectic (none)
    Love that word and what it means/implies.  LOVE it.

    opinion, tolerance, patience, integrity, truth, research, study, read, growth, action, equality, respect, debate, read, learn...  All good.  

    Hate, 'values voter', war, death, pain, died, killed, rape, murder, policy, meme, administration, moral majority, religious right, budget, toll- as in death toll- humans are not tolled they are lost, missed, murdered...  All very bad.  

    attention words?  I like apoplectic again, sincere, together, agree, include, serious... all for now

    and good idea!  Recommended

    "Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment...but as an endless succession of surprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society."

    by saint on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 03:25:52 PM PST

    •  definistrate (none)
      or is it with an 'e'.... defenistrate?  That's a good one too.

      I am a lover of words, or a logophile (see?) but can't spell for crap... you would think the two are logically connected.  Alas, it isn't so.

      And definistrate means to throw out a window.  
      LOVE IT!

      "Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment...but as an endless succession of surprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society."

      by saint on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 03:29:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Are you a psychiatrist? (none)
    If not, do you play one on blogs?

    good:  soft, sweet, friend, care

    bad:   spineless, ugly, religious, conservative, cruel

    attention:  resist, revolution, cat, sparkle, animals

  •  What I Want My Words To Do to You (4.00)
    That's a movie my sister is going to rent for us.  She makes her living with words.

    I make mine with numbers, but I'll try.

    Turn-ons: pioneer, book, giggle, laugh, beam, patiently, caregiver, listened, watched, read, speechless, play.

    Turn-off: as usual, always, understandably, ruled, penalized, touched, steadfast.

    Of course, now I think that both lists might be more like attention grabbers.  Anyway, my biggest attention grabber is multiple.  There's nothing like being told the wonderful/horrible thing you are about to read (or hear) about is not an isolated incident.

    Best wishes with your word analysis.

    •  Touched in the turn-off's (none)
      that's great!

      Mambo

      •  Analysis of Touched (none)
        While I'm sure a psychologist would have a great time analyzing my placement of the word touched in the turn-off column (as have I), I probably should have specified usage.

        People always say they were touched by so-and-so's actions, generosity, etc.  From friends and family, I'm okay with it, but in the news it's a big turn-off for me.  It rings so hollow that I always imagine the person being referred to is really a big jerk but the speaker is afraid to say so.

        Anyhow, I'm glad I gave you a laugh.

  •  Break the rules (none)
    Positive and negative?  Often the typically negative word used in a positive context is the most powerful.  So I have a difficult time with the concept -- I'm either stuck in level 3 or I'm a closet pragmatist just don't ask me to figure it out ;).

    Good Verbs:  trigger, pit, sear, scathe, scar, rip, mar, maul, bathe, forge, bless, run, caress, wash, fuse, infuse.

    Bad Verbs: any verb more than 2 sylables is questionable and all verbs which could prompt a listener to raise any of the following the question is positively loathesome: is that one word or hypenated, I wonder when that was invented, what the hell does that mean?

    Mambo

  •  Funny (none)
    re-read your instructions, typically after I had posted <g>, and if by bad words you mean words that make you suspicious -- they include many words with "positive connotations".  "Peace", for instance, always raises my attention level.  I find picture words -- especially picture verbs -- effective.  As for the psychology of the words themselves . . . where does this take us?
  •  2 cents (none)
    Good: Lovey
    Bad: anodyne pundit
    grabber: floccinaucinihilipilificatrix

    Always remember, others may hate you. Those who hate you don't win unless you hate them. And then you destroy yourself. Richard M Nixon.

    by peterborocanuck on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 05:55:25 PM PST

  •  My mother taught me a great term (4.00)
    When I was spouting off in ninth grade about a teacher and his "bullshit" my mother said in dulcet English tones that she preferred me NOT to use that term at the dinner table.

    As an alternative she offered "arrant nonsense".

    I've used it ever since in many different situations whenever I have meant BS but decided it was better not to say BS.

    And of course I've reminded my mum from time to time exactly what I mean when I do use it.  Having high school aged kids now myself we can laugh about it.

    And now frankly, I prefer it as I think it is actually more descriptive of what I think of someone's comments.

    Another good word I like is "inclusive".

    And I don't like "shrill" as I think it is a term used to silence a message rather than describe it.

    A dangerous word is "everybody", as in "everybody knows" or "everybody believes".  Ya sure?  Too often used to prop up shoddy arguments.

    "Freedom without responsibility is license and not liberty." Emerson not tom delay

    by Bionic on Mon Jan 10, 2005 at 09:53:25 PM PST

    •  and here I always thought it was... (none)
      ... errant nonsense!  arrant... learn something new every day.

      thanks for playing.

      •  Yes it's arrant (none)
        Arrant means complete or thorough whilst errant is wandering off the proper course.

        I suppose you could use either depending on the situation. :)

        I mean, is Bush an arrant fool or an errant one?

        "Freedom without responsibility is license and not liberty." Emerson not tom delay

        by Bionic on Tue Jan 11, 2005 at 01:49:51 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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