The fug of war
One of the things that infuriates me about Bush-style warfare is the way it turns grown journalists into zombies. Witness the way they have breathlessly repeated the ludicrous phrase “shock and awe”. Apart from the fact that it represents the lexicon of the kindergarten, it has an interesting racist overtone. What it really says is this: “We are going to show these primitive folks some of our technological magic so that they can be impressed by our power and sophistication”. White man have big flying machine hit bullseye heap good. One expects this kind of bullshit from military jargonauts. But why do adult journalists have to repeat it verbatim? The explanation is, of course, that they are themselves overawed. In my experience, very few journalists are actually immune to the halo-effect of great power or great wealth.