8 9 10 11 12 Displaying 64-70 of 118 Articles

This Sunday marks the fifth anniversary of the premiere episode of "The Colbert Report," Stephen Colbert's endlessly entertaining sendup of political pundit programs. On that episode, Colbert introduced the word "truthiness," which has proved so popular that it has entered the latest edition of the New Oxford American Dictionary. For my On Language column in Sunday's New York Times Magazine, I had the pleasure of interviewing Colbert (as himself, not his put-upon persona) and learned the inside story of "truthiness." Here is an extended excerpt from our conversation.  Continue reading...
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Moynihan's Sesquipedalianism

Newly published letters from longtime New York Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan reveal his efforts to popularize the word floccinaucinihili­pilificationism ("the futility of making estimates on the accuracy of public data"). Read about it on The New York Times City Room blog here.
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A Confusing Job Title

The top financial officer in the state of New York is the Comptroller — but nobody is quite sure how to pronounce it. It originally sounded like "controller," but that pronunciation has faded. Sam Dolnick, metro reporter for The New York Times, investigates here.
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Further Thoughts on "Refudiate"

Still mulling over Sarah Palin's use of the word refudiate? Check out these two commentaries. In his Good magazine column, Visual Thesaurus contributor Mark Peters uses Refudiate-gate as an opportunity for a "Sarah Palin retrospective" here. And Geoff Nunberg argues on NPR's "Fresh Air" that the reactions to Palin's gaffe were more telling than the gaffe itself, here.
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During my appearance on WNYC's "The Leonard Lopate Show" yesterday to talk about Sarah Palin's much-ridiculed use of the word refudiate, I found myself in the odd position of defending Warren Gamaliel Harding, one of the least admired presidents in American history. In the commentary on Palin, Harding was revived as a point of comparison, particularly for his use of two memorable words: normalcy and bloviate. As I said on the show, I'd argue that Harding has gotten a bad rap on both counts.  Continue reading...
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The dust has settled a bit since last week's Refudiate-Gate, when the blogosphere went into a tizzy after Sarah Palin used the word refudiate in a Twitter update — and then defended her coinage by likening herself to Shakespeare. Now that we've gotten the predictably overheated reactions from the left and the right out of the way, let's take a look at this particular Palinism with a calmer perspective.  Continue reading...
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"Refudiate": The View from Oxford

The blogosphere has been abuzz over Sarah Palin's use of the word refudiate in a Twitter update, apparently mashing up refute and repudiate. Now OUPblog, the official blog of Oxford University Press, weighs in. "Refudiate this, word snobs!" chortles OUP lexicographer Christine Lindberg. Read all about it here.
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8 9 10 11 12 Displaying 64-70 of 118 Articles