Archive for November, 2003


November 28, 2003

Amitai Etzioni: An Apology

A few posts ago, I referred to the communitarian thinker as having “a name which looks like the Scrabble hand from hell”. This provoked a certain amount of discussion at the time; I think that everyone took it in the spirit of fun in which I intended it, but have been left ever since with the uneasy suspicion that some people might have thought that I was mocking Etzioni for having specifically a Jewish name, rather than just generally for having a funny foreign non-English one. It’s always as well to be careful on these things.

All of which is by way of prelude to my having just realised that if there is an “S” already on the board, then if you had the tiles “AMITAIETZIONI” on your rack, you could put down the word “ZIONIST”. Which if it landed on a triple or double word score, would pretty much be game over, obviously.

Therefore, while I still think that “Amitai Etzioni” is a pretty poor Scrabble hand (apart from the Z, it’s all vowels and low scoring consonants), it can’t be described as “from hell”, because it does hold out the prospect of that fantastic move. Therefore, sorry.

More material coming soon, probably …