People sometimes use "political-savvy" to describe someone who is aware of what to do or what not to do in an organization or company. I wonder which word would be the opposite of that? i.e. someone who doesn't have that set of political (business, communication) skills.

  • 1
    Lacking in people skills. Apr 18, 2014 at 20:36
  • When they're sure they won't be overheard, I imagine the "savvy" people refer to the others as resources (or maybe sheep). But I expect OP is looking for a more "positive" expression. Apr 18, 2014 at 21:03
  • I like "Palinesq"
    – Chris
    Apr 18, 2014 at 23:05
  • 1
    This isn't a practical answer to your question (anymore?), but it might amuse you: The term "idiot", to the ancient Greeks (who originally used it), meant someone who did not participate in politics.
    – Superbest
    Apr 19, 2014 at 4:27

9 Answers 9


You could go with "political-naïveté", where naive is an antonym for savvy.

na·ive [nah-eev] adjective

1. having or showing unaffected simplicity of nature or absence of artificiality; unsophisticated; ingenuous.

2. having or showing a lack of experience, judgment, or information; credulous: She's so naive she believes everything she reads. He has a very naive attitude toward politics.

Source: NAIVE. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged. Retrieved April 18, 2014, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/NAIVE

As a bonus, savvy and naive both have roots in the romance languages, being primarily from Spanish/French and French respectively.

  • 1
    Plus, "naïve" has a great noun form: naïf (a naïve person). For "savvy", I guess you would have to go to maven for the noun. Apr 18, 2014 at 20:48

I think you mean politically savvy? The opposite? Pehaps politically unaware, a newcomer to politics, a political innocent.


I've heard the term "politically inept", as an adjective. There's even a Simpsons episode that uses this phrase in its title.

Unfortunately, the noun form, "political-ineptness" or "political-ineptitude", is not very elegant.


How about "political ignoramus," "political retard," and "political passivist?"

"Are you a political ignoramus?"

Confession of a political retard.

Also, on fairly different levels, consider "political don't-give-a-damnist" and "political apathist."


For someone who totally lacks political savvy, but tries to exercise it anyway: loose cannon?


Someone who is politically savvy is saying the right things to the right people. Often bending the truth or keeping their lips closed if they have any issues.

So two words that would describe the opposite behavior...

  • honest
  • blunt

Less formally, 'unsavvy' is the antonym of 'savvy'. (not that 'savvy' is particularly formal!)


Do-nothing: always used before a noun 1 : not willing to work, help, etc. : lazyenter link description here

a do-nothing husband

2 : failing to achieve or do anything important

a do-nothing policy/government/politician

Political cretinism

I've been hearing people say that about themselves mockingly. It's not that they actually consider themselves cretins in that aspect, but objectively assess their own level of knowledge as very low.

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