Parallel Structure

While the FUCK YOU Movement made it abundantly clear that we are AGAINST EVERYONE and FOR NO ONE (or at least for no one who could make it into mainstream politics), I would like to offer this tidbit of editorial advice to the Kerry/Edwards campaign.

The title of your book Our Plan for America: Stronger at Home, Respected in the World, is, in short, totally whacked. “Stronger” is a comparison adjective, while “respected” is one of those adjectives that is also a past participle. This creates a lack of parallel structure in the subtitle. It would sound much better if it were either Our Plan for America: Stronger at Home, More Respected in the World or Our Plan for America: Strong at Home, Respected in the World.

I learned the term “parallel structure,” by the way, watching The West Wing, a political reality every bit as real to me as the one The New York Times reports on. Toby the (fictional) White House Communications Director talks about it in reference to a (fictional) speech he is writing for the (fictional) president (played by Martin Sheen). Richard Schiff, the actor who plays Toby the (fictional) White House Communications Director, is married to Sheila Kelley, the actress who plays the woman who does video dating in the movie Singles. Sheila Kelley wrote a book called The S Factor: Strip Workouts for Every Woman. Rebecca Schiff was the assistant to the editor who published this book at the time it was being edited. It was Rebecca Schiff who was absorbed in aparticularly atrocious self-help book while the FUCK YOU movement was taking a midday protest break in Colesium Books on 42nd Street. It was the botched parallel structure in the Kerry-Edwards book I brought to Rebecca to try to distract her from the atrocious self-help tome. You see how it all comes full circle?

Leave A Comment