Boonedoggles, Not What You Think It Means

  • Posted on: 14 December 2016
  • By: David Trammel

Sometimes the strangest things will prompt me to post. Case in point...

I was reading ClubOrlov tonight. Guest writer, Candace Makeda Moore, paints a chilling picture of what Life is like for those Americans already deep into the first stage of the Long Descent. Its been a while since I visited, so I was reading some of the more recent posts.

One post, by Dmitry himself, touched on a common experience anyone who blogs has, the "Anti-Fan". That particular type of person who disagrees with what you write and is so happy to give you a piece of their mind. Usually in a long and twisted, profanity laced email or comment to your blog.

It wasn't the subject or post that prompts this post of my own. It was one of the off topic comments. Forrest said this:

"The origin of the term "boondoggle" (as people typically understand it) was in opponents' efforts to discredit a WPA educational program where the teacher had been encouraging people to make "Boonedoggles" == 'small useful gadgets that can be made cheap from available materials,' the sort of thing, he said, that Daniel Boone used to make to make his simple cabinhold tasks a little easier. You can see where this could really annoy somebody in the business of selling people expensive gadgets to make household tasks more impressive... Anyhow, the opposition had the newspapers to run a successful campaign against this sort of thing, hence the way people think about anything actually useful to poor people, to this day!"

(The WPA was the Depression era government program which helped millions by putting them to work, usually on projects that businesses could have done, and made a profit on, but instead it helped those millions get by in very tough times.)

In the Long Descent, we could use a lot more "doggles".

What we will certainly need are more and more people to sit down and figure out how to accomplish a task with the limited resources they will have then. And resources are about to get very limited indeed.

After all, a paper clip was thought up by someone with a bit of wire and a couple of pliers.

And we know how useful paperclips are, lol.


(©: "red paperclip 1" by talk2frank)