Monday, September 21, 2009

The Atlas Doctrine (Uncommon Wisdom #23)


  1. 1852-1913, and credited with coining SNAFU? Come now Peter, if snafu had existed prior to World War 1, don't you think there would have been MANY references to it in the literature and popular culture? Yet the term isn't seen until WW2. And it came from the soldiers, not from the brass... Good thing General Moore is imaginary.

    From -

    SNAFU, simply defined as "Situation normal", was reported in American Notes and Queries in their September 1941 issue, which would argue for an origin date no later than early 1941. Most references, including the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, supply a date range of 1940 - 1944, generally attributing it to the U.S. Army.

    Sorry Peter, I don't know why I'm in such a carping mood tonight. - Ted

  2. Hey Ted, I put in a call raising your objections over the possibility of General Moore's coinage of Snafu to his daughter Eve N. Moore. a professor of history at Columbia. Her reply:

    "This objection overlooks the delicate sensibilities of the time, and what was deemed fit for print. Snafu is, of course an acronym for the phrase "Situation normal, all fucked up." The use of such epithets was unheard of in print until much later, and plenty of people remain shocked by them today. It is still rare to find them in newspapers. But did people use these words in everyday speech? You fuckin' A."