I remember being struck once by a thought, many years ago and in a quite different situation, that went like this: "In order to possess what you most value, you may often have to tolerate what you detest."
It should not be surprising if that thought were true, in a world well described by John Kekes as one of "scarcity, contingency and flaw." Because there is never enough of anything for people to have what they desire, requiring competition and gain-and-loss, because the unexpected and unplanned-for is always happening, and because human beings are a complex mix of goodness and evil, with the evil part not negligible.
Following links, I wound up in the comments section of the National Catholic Reporter, a newspaper with its feet planted firmly in 1968. An article about possible successors to the current pope included the usual concern about an American as being too tied to a "superpower". One indignant commentor, indicative of the temper and brains of most of them, opined, "Who said America is a 'superpower'? What about the Eurozone?"
Words have definitions --or at least they used to. Of late it seems that Humpty Dumpty is in charge of Webster's. "Marriage" suddenly has nothing to do with gender. And in England the Minister for Equalities points out that in order to achieve equality, some people will have to be treated better than others...But words also have connotations, which shift from context to context. Emanations and penumbras, for you Constitutional scholars. Consider the different hues in these uses:
The Libyan dictator took on the title of Commander of the Faithful.The first feels distinctly martial, a group to taken seriously, the second much more bovine...or whatever the latinate adjective is for herds of sheep...ovine?
The Holy Father asked all the faithful to pray for peace.
On average, women live longer than men.
This administration supports the health rights and choices of women.
Sister Liberty Dancing on the Bodies of Dead Men
Number one seems just factual and descriptive. Number two uses the word as a flag, where "woman" is code for "wymyn, those very special creatures who have been so downtrodden and now deserve everything free, you putz". That's how it sounds whenever La Pelosi says it, anyway.
Definition is important. So is connotation.
Over at Blackfriars in Oxford, they have a lecture on about how their people are trying to redevelop economics as a moral science. When most Catholics, der Papst included, start talking about economics and politics, ---Justice and Peace---I can almost hear all their unhinged heads cramming themselves up their pious asses. They should be required to chant "scarcity, contingency and flaw" all during Lent. Yeah, economics and politics, two of the items Jesus spent most of his time lecturing on and which Christians are supremely talented at....not. OMG. Just what we have too much of and don't need any more of. How about economics as a realistic science? Which is what I used to think "science" meant.