While reading the book ‘The Smear’ by Sharyl Attkisson, I discovered a term I had never heard before.
In her chapter on the birth of the Smear, Attkisson tells the story of Robert Bork, a Ronald Reagan nominee to the Supreme Court.
“His (Bork’s) highly orchestrated character assassination was hatched and played out in real time, on live television, before a national audience. It was an all-out war, and liberal forces mobilized as never before in a Supreme Court contest.
Due to the smears, Bork’s nomination was defeated, and a new term was coined.
“Getting borked came to mean becoming the unfortunate target of an unfair, relentless, organized character assassination.”
The term eventually made its way into the Oxford English Dictionary.
From the Oxford English Dictionary: Borked (verb) is “to defame or vilify (a person) systematically, especially in the mass media, usually with the aim of preventing his or her appointment to public office; to obstruct or thwart (a person) in this way.”
There’s a lot of borking going on in America!
For more propaganda related terms, visit our propaganda glossary
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