Going Rogue With The OED, and Going Etymological On Palin

Apparently Sarah Palin’s book, Going Rogue, has been published.

Here’s a potentially reasonable way to approach books by politicians: If the book is based exclusively or primarily on the purported author’s being or wanting to be or having been a politician, do not buy the book, and do not read the book. Consider not even looking at the book’s cover.

If the book is about something else, proceed with caution, and use your judgment as to whether to read the book or even look at the cover.

This approach should apply to politicians across the political spectrum.

Example: Al Gore’s book on global warming is worth considering, but proceed with caution. Nonetheless, at least he tried to write about more than Al Gore. I can’t think of a Republican counterpart at the moment, but I’m sure there is one. For instance, if Bob Dole were to write a book about being a soldier in World War II, the book would deserve a look. In fact, I think I’d read it–as long as the lion’s share of it were about the war and his experience in it.

Which brings us to Sarah Palin’s book, Going Rogue, about which I have nothing to say (except as covered under the discussion above), but I have looked at the Oxford Dictionary of the English Language online and identified the first 7 definitions of the word, definitions that seem . . . uncanny in the context:

One belonging to a class of idle vagrants or vagabonds
[now archaic; circa 1565]

Applied abusively to servants. [as in Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew]

A dishonest, unprincipled person; a rascal. [last OED citation, 1888]

An inferior plant among seedlings.


An elephant driven away, or living apart, from the herd, and of a savage or destructive disposition.


Any large wild animal of a similar character.

A horse which is inclined to shirk its work on the race-course or in the hunting field. rogue’s badge, a hood or blinkers put on a race-horse of this description.

An inexplicably aberrant result or phenomenon; an extra or misplaced item in a list, table, etc.

Something that is inexplicably faulty or defective.


That which lacks appropriate control; something which is irresponsible or undisciplined.

All quotations are taken directly from the OED online, with grateful acknowledegment.

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