My learned readers will be familiar with George Orwell's 1984, and the term 'Newspeak'. This in effect meant that the Ministry of Propaganda twisted the meaning of words to suit their totalitarian agenda (e.g. this Ministry became the Ministry of Truth), and a whole parallel world of untruth was created by subtle and not-so-subtle language distortions.
We got a similar example this week in the Irish Times. There could, and should , have been a shock headline 'Almost One Birth In Five To Non-Nationals'. And this would indeed be a shocking statistic, showing as it does that the whole structure of our population will undergo fundamental change if such trends are maintained. Needless to say, cultural enrichers from Africa topped the reproductive league table. Looks like there'll be no shortage of knife-wielding recruits for the next decade's gangs.
So how can we suitably distort this alarming message? Simple, spin it 'Fewer Than One Birth In Five To Non-Nationals'.
Just like that. And from the self-styles 'paper of record'.