This essay represents the ninth post of The Angry Czeck Century Series, a thought-provoking collection of penetrating harangues of rancor leading to the Angry Czeck’s 100th Post. You are currently reading Post 96.
Is there no greater argument than “So?”
Elegant in its simplicity, bitingly ruthless in its application, “so” is the argument A-bomb. It amputates all debate like a monosyllabic swish of the guillotine blade. You can send all your battle-hardened troops to the front, only to see their M-16s melt before the red-hot intensity of “so.” If you and the Outsiders pick a fight with the Socs, and “so” points a finger at you, just know that Patrick Swayze is driving you to the hospital. Guaranteed.
Imagine how the Lincoln/Douglas debates might have developed had Lincoln kept “so” stashed in his giant hat. There would have been no debate!
DOUGLAS: You advocate for the sovereignty of state government, Mr. Lincoln, yet you oppose my Kansas-Nebraska Act by defending the Missouri Compromise, which has far outlived its purpose.
DOUGLAS: Damnitt, Abe! We said “No so’s!”
“So” is brilliant strategy that, somehow, escaped the unnecessarily poetic Lincoln, who could have said in one syllable what he later forced generations of school children to memorize in his wordy Gettysburg Address.
Even today, our modern politicians are eschewing the Power of So for more so-called eloquent arguments. Have they not learned that ours’ is a society of sound bytes? Hell, “so” isn’t even a byte! It’s a nibble! And still “so” is ignored!
Think how the landscape of political debates would change once stamped by the dickprint of “so!”
WOLF BLITZER: Governor Huckabee, you want public school curriculum to include Creationism right alongside evolution despite evidence from the fossil record, carbon dating, and nearly unanimous agreement in the scientific community.
Awesome! See? It cannot be trumped! What better way to say, “You’re opinion/concern has no value, nor is it worthy of address,” better than the mighty “so?” Even the naturally succinct Donald Rumsfield could have benefited from “so.”
TED KOPPEL: Mr. Rumsfield, how do you respond to critics to the invasion of Iraq now that it is evident that its citizens have not greeted us as liberators or has revealed a Doomsday WMD program?
Sure, the crafty Koppel may not be entirely stymied by “so,” but then Rumsfield only had to tack on so’s handy addendum, the coup de grace than cannot be nullified:
KOPPEL: “So” many citizens are openly wondering why “so” many lives and resources have been invested in toppling a paper regime!
RUMSFIELD: (wordless shrug)
Yes! The “So” + Wordless Shrug Combo always equals victory, an awesome display of verbal insurgency no counter-surge could ever repel! Had “so” been properly utilized during the Bush Administration, a triumphant Andy Card and Karl Rove could have enjoyed the privilege of witnessing an emasculated Press Corp collectively slump their shoulders, turn off their voice recorders, and silently return to their studios – as crushed human beings!
Our nation’s leadership may have dropped the ball on “so,” but that doesn’t mean you have to make the same mistake.
WIFE: You’re fat!
COP: You’re speeding.
CO-WORKER: Your naked-woman screen-saver offends me!
DOCTOR: I found a polyp on your lower intestine.
BOSS: You want a raise, but you haven’t billed an hour in six months.
Really, “so” is your companion in every walk of life. It is the Reason Nullifier, rendering any inscrutable fact obsolete to your point-of-view! Using “so” is like grabbing Sean Penn by the arm and breaking it at the elbow, it’s that satisfying!
Ironically, I just wrote 600 words defending a uni-word argument.