March 9, 2013

Inappropriate Holder.

I Googled "inappropriate holder" because I wanted to look deeply into Eric Holder's use of the word "inappropriate" instead of "unconstitutional" when he was questioned about drone strikes.

The top result was from Trip Advisor: "Hotel Am Muhlenteich Photo: Complimentary toiletries, inappropriate holder meant they fell off the holder all the time." LOL. Inappropriate Holder. Don't you hate the way new toothbrushes have these bulbous handles and won't fit in the slots of your old cemented-to-the-wall toothbrush rack?

If only our rights were so secure! Anyway, I'm not really trying to be funny here. I think "inappropriate" is a fascinating word. I see that back in 2011 "Holder Scolds Congress for ‘Inappropriate Rhetoric’ in Fast and Furious Investigation."

The Oxford English Dictionary (unlinkable, sorry) makes short work of "inappropriate," which has one line of definition — "Not appropriate; unsuitable to the particular case; unfitting, improper" — and only 3 historical examples:
1804   Ann. Rev. 2 19/2   A rambling inappropriate retrospect of Indian history.
1846   Dickens Dombey & Son (1848) ii. 9   [He] invaded the grave silence..with the singularly inappropriate air of ‘A Cobbler there was’.
1883   H. Drummond Nat. Law in Spiritual World (ed. 2) Pref. 13   Inappropriate Hybridism is checked by the Law of Sterility.
I resort to my second-favorite reference resource, my husband Meade. I ask: "What associations do you have with the word 'inappropriate'?"

Meade: "Miss Manners."


"What is the Physical Politic of Mr. Walter Bagehot but the tension of the Natural Law to the Political World? What is the Biological Sociology of Mr. Herbert Spencer, but the application of Natural Law to the Social World? Will it be charged that the splendid achievements of such thinkers are hybrids between things which Nature has meant to remain apart? Nature usually solves such problems for herself. Inappropriate Hybridism is checked by the Law of Sterility."


Anonymous said...

Inappropriate touching.

Extra penalty: cupped hands.

cubanbob said...

"inappropriate holder" is the present holder of the office of attorney general of the United States.

Hagar said...

Au contraire, Madame,
"Inappropriate" is a very strong word in the context of government officials' behavior.

Hagar said...

Au contraire, Madame,
"Inappropriate" is a very strong word in the context of government officials' behavior.

Bob said...

Inappropriate hybridism may result in sterility. Appropriate hybridism may increase vigor.

The problem is that you can't always tell which is which until after the mating is done.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

Speaking of inappropriate... Inappropraite Michell Obama and John Kerry?

The drone thus has come to symbolize the central defect of America’s “war on terror,” which is that it’s all means and no end: We’re fighting the symptoms rather than the cause.

For a war without strategic purpose, a drone’ll do. Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen born in New Mexico, was whacked by a Predator not on a battlefield but after an apparently convivial lunch at a favorite Yemeni restaurant. Two weeks later, al-Awlaki’s son Abdulrahman was dining on the terrace of another local eatery when the CIA served him the old Hellfire Special and he wound up splattered all over the patio. Abdulrahman was 16, and born in Denver. As I understand it, the Supreme Court has ruled that American minors, convicted of the most heinous crimes, cannot be executed. But you can gaily atomize them halfway round the planet. My brief experience of Yemeni restaurants was not a happy one but, granted that, I couldn’t honestly say they met any recognized definition of a “battlefield.”

Al-Awlaki Junior seems to have been your average anti-American teen. Al-Awlaki Senior was an al-Qaeda ideologue, and a supposed “spiritual mentor” to everyone from the 9/11 murderers to the Fort Hood killer and the thwarted Pantybomber. On the other hand, after September 11, he was invited to lunch at the Pentagon, became the first imam to conduct a prayer service at the U.S. Congress, and was hailed by NPR as an exemplar of an American “Muslim leader who could help build bridges between Islam and the West.” The precise point at which he changed from American bridge-builder to Yemeni-restaurant take-out is hard to determine. His public utterances when he was being feted by the New York Times are far more benign than those of, say, Samira Ibrahim, who was scheduled to receive a “Woman of Courage” award from Michelle Obama and John Kerry on Friday until an unfortunate flap erupted over some ill-phrased Tweets from the courageous lass rejoicing on the anniversary of 9/11 that she loved to see “America burning.” The same bureaucracy that booked Samira Ibrahim for an audience with the first lady and Anwar al-Awlaki to host prayers at the Capitol now assures you that it’s entirely capable of determining who needs to be zapped by a drone between the sea bass and the tiramisu at Ahmed’s Bar and Grill. But it’s precisely because the government is too craven to stray beyond technological warfare and take on its enemies ideologically that it winds up booking the first lady to hand out awards to a Jew-loathing, Hitler-quoting, terrorist-supporting America-hater.

Thanks for voting, America. Good job.

traditionalguy said...

Holder's use of the sneering put down of outsider's political language as, "inappropriate" is proving my point of a sudden renewal of an Aristocracy that has been appointed by and serves under a Divine Right King.

As a Naval Officer who is a grandson and a son of Navy Admirals, John S McCain and his South Carolina sidekick Lindsay Graham are willing accomplices to an Aristocratic mode of governance.

There is never room for inappropriate responses to an Admiral's orders...Billy Mitchell tried doing that in 1921 to prove the day of Dreadnaughts was gone and airpower was the dominant power. His reward was a Court-Marshall.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Now, where did I see "Inappropriately Touched by an Angel"?

Anonymous said...

The law seems an inappropriate choice of career for Mr. Holder, or then again, the perfect choice. It depends on how much esteem or how little esteem you hold for the law.

edutcher said...

I'm still working on the Demo ticket in '16:


Strelnikov said...

I find this entire post inappropriate.

Stephen A. Meigs said...

When Oral B changed their toothbrushes about 10 years ago, I sent them an email complaining that all I want is a tooth brush with extremely soft bristles with a handle that will fit in a typical wall dispenser, and that I didn't care whether it looked like it might go to the moon. They wrote back assuring me that the huge handles were scientifically designed to ensure ease of use with the proper toothbrush motions, or some such thing. Perhaps I've gotten to prefer the huge handles, but more worrisome it seems like toothbrush bristles are not as soft as they used to be. Since I brush my teeth rather often, I've gotten so I special order the Wisdom Clean Between sensitive toothbrushes available in the U.K. (don't seem to be on, sorry); they are so much softer and better (but with big handle) than anything I've gotten in a grocery store. Now, if only I could find a good non-abrasive fluoride toothpaste without artificial sweetener or unneeded potassium nitrate!

Unknown said...

The beauty of "inappropriate" is that it's user defined. Teachers use it all the time because they can always find a reason for any behavior to be inappropriate at any specific time.
Isn't it beautiful when the Attorney General uses inappropriate in place of unlawful? Warms the heart.

Beach Brutus said...

"Unconstitutional" or "unlawful" seem more neutral, clinical in meaning where "inappropriate" carries a connotation of moral judgment. Thus saying someone who disagrees with your gun running policies is "inappropriate" is an effort to claim or regain moral position.