You’ll have to wait a while for access to the full version of Andrew Ferguson‘s latest “Press Man” column for Commentary, in which he discusses the “Most Important Election in Our Lifetimes,” the “Worst Economy Since the Great Depression,” and the “Worst Financial Crisis in Our History.”
But here’s a little snippet:
I’m not sure whether this chronic aggrandizement — this steady insistence that whatever is happening now is the best or worst or greatest or in any case is simply unprecedented — is just a consequence of the self-regard of baby boomers, who despite being proclaimed (usually by one of their own) the Best Educated Generation in History seem simultaneously to be the Most Historically Oblivious. The process whereby anything, no matter how banal, can be pointlessly intensified by the mere act of describing it is called Gingriching. The former speaker never heard a stupidity that wasn’t profoundly stupid or witnessed an act of incompetence that wasn’t stunningly so. This weakness for the intensifying adverb is a harmless tic in most people, though not in Gingrich. And among journalists and political professionals, who are supposed to know better, it’s particularly annoying and should be disqualifying.