I have to admit that I have a talent for obfuscation. Wikipedia refers to obfuscation as “beclouding” and I have to admit that I like this description. It seems to really capture what obfuscation is– using bigger less familiar words to confuse people into not really understanding what you’re talking about. It is in the skill set of any successful salesperson. (Even honest salespeople, it seems to me– based in part on my own work in sales– sometimes have to, as a country woman might put it “buffalo them with that bullshit”. I confess I once had a job where I tried to call people who were working at dull jobs with lots of down time, such as motel clerks. I made a big point of telling them that I was calling Long Distance (remember when that used to be a real big deal) to tell them that they had been selected to receive our special offer this month. Most of the time I did not get all of the way through my pitch, but when I did, the poor bored motel clerk had agreed to buy a 5 year subscription to 5 different magazines for about 300 dollars, though it was pitched in such a way that the ones who took us up on the special offer Never realized what they had just bought or how much it would cost them. ) You could say I understood obfuscation all too well.
Adjudication is a legal term. It refers to the process by which a judge weights evidence and applies rules of law to resolve a dispute between two parties. It could be used with reference to most any court case or arbitration proceeding against some (theoretically) neutral judge or arbiter. It is most commonly heard in reference to private (non-court) binding arbitration or in civil court cases. It is a very precise word, which law school students spend a great deal of time and energy to fully understand and appreciate. It is also a word that is almost impossible to use correctly outside of the contexts specified. It might in fact be an excellent word to employ in an obfuscation.
Plasticize, it seems to me has two meanings. I could literally be referring to a chemical process in which one creates plastic, which as explained in this other book that I didn’t actually review, covers a huge variety of compounds made from a great many different ingredients for a great many different purposes. But it also seems to me that it can be used less literally, to refer to a process of becoming fake or distant. If I heard someone remark that Hollywood has become so plasticized they can’t bear to go to the movies anymore, the remark would make sense to me. Although I’d be the first to admit it was a poor usage and didn’t really convey what it is the speaker finds lacking in current cinema.
My sincerest thanks to Don Dobbie who suggested today’s words.