Register Thursday | June 27 | 2019

A Short History of the Passive Voice

Foot in mouth dept

2004  -- “It’s also important for the people of Iraq to know that in a democracy, everything is not perfect, that mistakes are made.”

President George W. Bush on the Abu Ghraib prison scandal.


1986  -- “Mistakes were made.”

Former president Ronald Reagan on the Iran-Contra affair.


1940 -- “Vodka was enjoyed, bloody purges were committed.”

Stalin on human atrocity and casual drinking.


1815
 -- “Syphilis was contracted and Russia was invaded.”

Napoleon, from Elba, on his “me complex.”


1536 --   “The Incas have to realize that not all conquistadors are perfect. Natives were massacred. Staggeringly large shipments of gold were expropriated.”

Francisco Pizarro, winning Incan hearts
and minds at Caxamalca.
 


40 AD
-- “Wine was imbibed, infant cousins were invited, Bacchus was invoked, ‘monstrous orgies’ may or may not have occurred.”
Caligula, on the Roman orgy scandal.


Paleolithic Era
 -- “Blunt sticks gathered, skulls bashed. Ugh.”

Stig, defending the use of his newly acquired
“opposable thumbs of mass destruction.”