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Opening Arguments

Words escape me

The linguists at Lake Superior State University join me in distaste for the "fiscal cliff" metaphor, but not because it's innacurate or misleading (my contention). They seem to dislike it merely because it's been so overused.

"Fiscal cliff" heads the 38th annual "List of Words to be Banished from the Queen's English for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness" put out by Lake Superior State University in Michigan.

"You can't turn on the news without hearing this," said Christopher Loiselle, of Midland, Mich., in his nominating submission, reports the Associated Press. "I'm equally worried about the River of Debt and Mountain of Despair."

Also on the list is "kick the can down the road" and "double down," both of which should have been retired years ago. God, they all three go together so horribly, don't they? If Congress keeps doubling down on kicking the can down the road, we're going over the fiscal cliff for sure!


Bob G,
Tue, 01/01/2013 - 12:02pm


I like the fact that there ARE people out there that despise such recently hacknetyed terms and words like these.

What's more bothersome, is whether we should detest those who produce those phrases with the same intent.

LOL - like the way you banded them together...gives me shivers!


Harl Delos
Thu, 01/03/2013 - 2:33pm

How did they ever miss "move to the next level"?

There was support for making English the national language, and if it means we deport anyone who uses phrases like these, I think it'd be a good idea.