Picks and Pans Review: Five Things That Would Have Made George Orwell Happy in 1984

UPDATED 12/24/1984 at 01:00 AM EST Originally published 12/24/1984 at 01:00 AM EST

(1) Members of the congregation of the Cornerstone Assembly of God Church in Bowie, Md. destroyed a batch of phonograph records they said reflected "Satan's power." Among them were albums by Donny and Marie Osmond. (2) The CIA insisted that its advice in a controversial pamphlet aimed at Nicaraguan rebels—to "neutralize" members of Nicaragua's leftist government—did not mean they should be killed. (3) The Soviet Union began revising its past again to restore the reputation of Joseph Stalin, the former dictator denounced as "capricious" and "brutal" by Nikita Khrushchev in 1956 and all but written out of the country's history books. (4) The U.S. Information Agency's blacklist of people deemed unsuitable for government-sponsored speaking engagements overseas, mostly because they were too liberal, was published; it included Ralph Nader, poet Allen Ginsberg and Walter Cronkite. (5) The National Transportation Safety Board received a National Council of Teachers of English "Doublespeak" award for referring to plane crashes as "controlled flights into terrain."

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