Fact-Checking the "PRT Boondoggle" Blog
A project of the PRT NewsCenter

Friday, April 27, 2007

By Any Other Name

One of the puzzling things about the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist is his difficulty with language.

The typos.
The punctuation (learn how to use ellipses, buddy).
And he's usually a punchline short of a joke.

Another aspect is the (almost) endearing awkwardness with which he tries to hurl insults. Let's look at his two favorite epithets.

1. "Gadgetbahn, gadgetbahnen" (over 170 hits. Created by Michael Setty of publictransit.us, earliest appearance in 2002). It's supposed to be an insult, but really now. Bahn means "road," but it also means "rail" -- Deutsche Bahn, for example, is the government-owned German railways agency. And people like gadgets, they find gadgets to be useful devices, otherwise they wouldn't want them. So, Labridor thinks calling PRT a useful device on rail is a slam? Pretty low on my list of fightin' words.

But, eager to get in on the Teutonic branding, last year Kenwood floated this trial balloon:

"I have a hypothesis; PRT seems to induce a magnetism (I call it Gadgetbahnism) that pulls all sorts of crack-pots into its orbit." Source

"Gadgetbahnism"??? Give me a freakin' break.

2. "PRTista, PRTistas" (35 hits, seems like more). It's PRT plus the Spanish version of the suffix -ist. In English, "PRTist." Objectively it means 'one who is of/with PRT.' But if you call someone a PRTista, the intended meaning is clear: the person in question is being likened to Nicaragua's Sandinistas.

This is only an insult if the people doing the namecalling don't like Sandinistas. Maybe it's just me, but I don't mind being lumped in with a left-wing political movement that toppled the U.S.-puppet Somoza, resisted death squads that were funded by Ollie North's illegal sale of weapons to Iran (and proceeds of drug smuggling), and, when they came to power, significantly reduced illiteracy.

Therefore I now formally claim these two non-insult insults for the pro-PRT side. Yeah, I'm a PRTista, and I like gadgetbahn -- so what of it?

Also today:
COPYCAT! Now he's putting Easter Eggs in his posts too. You know what they say about imitation and flattery.

"I like big Ken Avidor s and I cannot lie"

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