A Matter of Semantics - part two

So why are these aliens coming to Earth in the first place?

Jonathan Liebesman explains: "Earth is 70 percent water. The aliens in our movie use water for many different things, so they are here for those natural resources."

Or as Winston Churchill would have put it:

People are accustomed to their birth culture, I guess. There is no way around it: people know what they know. One grows up absorbing the values and behaviors of one's own culture and develops patterns of thought reflecting the culture as normal.

This is, no doubt, one of the things that make it difficult for scriptwriters to imagine behaviors of entities from a different culture from the perspective of what a different culture could possibly be like rather than from their own.


  1. That quote from Churchill says it all. Goes side by side with his opinion of Gandhi:

    "It is alarming and also nauseating to see Mr. Gandhi, a seditious Middle Temple lawyer of the type well-known in the East, now posing as a fakir, striding half naked up the steps of the Viceregal palace to parley on equal terms with the representative of the King-Emperor."
    ~ Winston Churchill on Gandhi's meeting with the Viceroy of India (1931)

    You mean...GASP!..."parley on equal terms..." Ah, the arrogance of the little menschen. They just don't know their place, do they? But, please don't hold back, Winston. Tell us how you really feel about the F*#king retards©

    It's a common misconception to assume that those views were extraordinary for Churchill's time and background.

    The same attitude still largely prevails today. Such contempt for the little people and the untermensch is just not expressed in a public manner any longer.

    It's just not done - not "politically correct," you know.

    Nowadays, it takes a slip of the tongue, or Wikileaks, for "the little people" to fully appreciate what the ruling elite privately thinks of them and the world.

  2. And the Islamophobes are trying to make a billion or so Muslims the "little people." And the Europeans are trying to make Arabs the "little people," especially in relation to Israel. And the Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana, Florida and Pennsylvania (etc.) Republicans are trying to make public employees the "little people" with no bargaining rights. And the rich are reminding all the rest of us we are the "little people." And Wall Street (masters of the universe) are taking their shots too. And in most corporations the pecking order reminds the clerks and secretaries they are surely the "little people." It goes on and on.

  3. In 1919, Colonial Secretary Churchill advocated the use of chemical weapons on the "uncooperative Arabs" in the puppet state of Iraq. "I do not understand the squeamishness about the use of gas," he declared. "I am strongly in favor of using poison gas against uncivilized tribes."

    But this was then.

    This is the 3rd millennium, now.

    We use cluster bombs and predator drones.