The so-called "news" media (Hey, remember real news?) can get under one's skin on so many levels. Today, let's just concentrate on their delivery and vocabulary, because one can only take so much pet peevage in one sitting. Journalists overuse several terms and phrases the way John Boehner overuses tanning beds and taverns. The way Republicans overuse Voter I.D. laws. The way Sunday talk shows overuse John McCain and Lindsey Graham. The way the GOP overuses the filibuster. The way Ferguson cops overuse tear gas. The way Sarah Palin overuses "You betcha!" "also, too," and Facebook.
Below are a few of the annoying phrases that cable news hosts, contributors, and guests insist on using over and over and over again, ad nauseam. And these are just off the top of my head.
And don't even get me started on the weirdly unnatural, singsong delivery and pauses used by most correspondents' in their "packaged" (pre-taped) segments. Or the inability of many hosts to read off their teleprompters. Or the way MSNBC guests and contributors are forced to clasp their hands in front of them like kindergarteners. Or the Oh, come on now! grammatical errors made by seasoned anchors, underscored by the You gotta be kidding me! spelling errors on the news crawl. Or the forced palsy-walsitude and effusive praise among cliquey hosts. Can you imagine Walter Cronkite doing any of that?
Here's a partial list of news biz clichés. Some are irritating because they are meaningless. Some are unbearably stale. Some are painfully trite and/or cloying. Others simply make no sense. And all make me wonder why so many intelligent newscasters and editors rely on such hackneyed and/or poor verbiage. You are invited to pile on in Comments:
- Take a listen
- At the end of the day
- The whole nine yards
- All politics is local
- A tempest in a teapot
- Some say...
- Game changer
- Went missing
- In the days and weeks to come (weeks and months, months and years)...
- Thank you, my friend
- On the ground
- At this point in time
- I just got off the phone with...
- Did I mention journey?
- We need to have a conversation
- The homeland
- That being said...
- We'll leave it there
We'll leave it there.
For a satirical look at MSNBC hosts and their banter, link over to my Preen forward #OhButIKid post of a few months ago.