The thesis that language is a special case of action is analysed in terms of the following three claims. First, language is presumably just as intentional as action is, in the precise sense that both involve largely automatic processing of goal-directed representations, with conscious attention essentially granting stability to the process. Second, this largely automatic processing of both language and action seems to be based on a shared generative mechanism. Third, this common process can be described as a bidirectional inferential device, which at the same time allows the prediction of goals from means and the retrodiction of means from goals. These considerations converge towards the idea that language processing is based on domain-general processes which are shared with non-linguistic action.