What’s Wrong? Extracts

This book is now on sale. Below is an extract on doubtful terms.


a priori, absolutely (this is the default BBC answer for ‘yes’), accountable, acid test, action (verb), activist (what’s wrong with having a cause?), adamant (for a lawyer, a dodgy proposition that the lawyer cannot dissuade the client from persisting in), add value, address issues, agenda, agitator (a Mixmaster ?), and/or (deadly before a fussy literate person or in a literate context: what does it mean?), and then some, antithesis, apples with apples, arguably, argy bargy, as to whether, at the end of the day, attendee (looks passive, but should be active, and is pretentious), austerity (living within your means) Aussie (Aussie Aussie Aussie is more than three times as bad – see cringe making below), awesome


back to the future, backflip (vulgar abuse in politics), bad apples, ballpark, bandy about, beloved (maudlin), beltway, best practice, birth (as verb – ‘she birthed well’), bottom line, boot camp, boutique, brand (noun), break even, breaking point, breakthrough, broad church (euphemism for factional corrosion in a political party), burning issue


cack handed, canny (Scot or investor), cancel culture, catalyst, charisma, cherry pick, closure, coalface, comfort zone, comfortable (be comfortable or uncomfortable with – except in negotiating), competitive evaluation process, conceptualise, conflate, connote (unless you know the difference from denote), conservative (utterly abused or debauched: as we speak, either suicidally recidivist reactionary or one claiming the privilege of the harlot through the ages) core (values, principles, or promises), cost benefit, cost effective, crisis (typical political or economic hyperbole), cringe making, critique (verb), crushing, cut through, cut-through (noun), cut to the chase, cutting edge


damage control (what politicians do when they get caught), deal breaker, deconstruct, deep pockets, delighted (‘I or we would be’ is generally a bad lie; see passionate), devil in the detail, dialogue, dichotomy (the last two are so pretentious), dilemma (unless it is a real one and not just where you have to make a choice), discriminate (extreme care required – we discriminate against murderers), downsize, doyen, Draconian (unforgivable), draw a line in the sand, driver (management bullshit as in ‘core driver’)


elite, end of the day, envision, epicentre (when you just mean centre) even playing field, eventuate, execute (that shot was poorly executed = bad shot), existential (threat or anything else), extrapolate, eye watering


faceted (multi ), famously (as in ‘as X famously said’), feedback, feel good, fire up, flag (verb), flip flop (verb), floodgates, frame of reference, freedom (from what or to do what), free-standing, front and centre (adverb), full credit, functionality


gaffe (an error by a politician you want to put down), game changer, game plan, gear up, geared to, generation X, get-go, go figure, going forward, go to man, good luck with that, governance, grow (transitive verb – ‘she grew her business’), gut feeling, gutted (the opposite of stoked)


having regard to, head space, heavy lifting, hearts and minds, heralds (verb), herein or hereon, hereinafter or hereinbefore, high end, high handed, highly geared, hindsight, holed up, holistic (an almost certain guarantee of pure bullshit), hollow out, hopefully, hot button, hunkered down


icon, iconic (as remarked above, this has been belted senseless), identity politics, impact (verb), impact on, impactful, in a nutshell, in regards to, in terms of (the adult version of the teenage comfy rug ‘like’), in terrorem, input, interface, issue (address the), iteration


jackboot, journey (mine with you)


keep me (you) awake at night, key, key performance indicators, king hit, knife edge (election, frustrating a caller)


landmark, lean in, legacy (in second term of US President), Left (as a political term), leverage, leverage off, libertarian (a status not claimed by those with a modicum of sense or a sense of modesty; pompous code for something far worse), line in the sand, line of sight, little Aussie battler, low hanging fruit


macro , make a nonsense of, maintenance (high or low), mandate (crass as a verb and abused as a noun), marginalise, matrix, maximise, meaningful, micro , mindset, minuet (unless it is warranted), mis speak (in truth, it was a lie), modality, mojo, monetise, morph, move the dial, moving forward, multi skilled, multi tasked, my (our) ask of you


neo conservative, neoliberal, network (verb – except for travelling Russian furriers), no brainer, – not (in brackets after a list of attributes), not have a problem with, nuanced


obligate, one size fits all, ongoing, opine, optics, optimal, optimise, options, orient, orientated, outcome, outgoing, out group, outlier, output, outsource, overall


parameters, parent (verb), parenting, passionate (about things you show no passion about), pear-shaped, per, perfect storm, political correctness, political football, politically motivated, poor decision, prioritise, proactive, problem (not have a problem with), progressive (political), push back


quick fix


radar (off or under the), ramp up, reach out, reality check, red flag, red line, reform (in politics, it suggests that the change is for the better, which will generally be controversial), repurpose, reputational damage, reset, resonating, rethink, Right (political) (see above, Left – what does either mean here and now?), roll out


said (adjective), scenario, scope (verb – clear symptom of predatory and expensive bullshit), scoping, segue, seize on (what a politician does with the mistake of another), share with you, showcase, sic, side of the angels, sidewalk (only US), skill set, societal, sovereign or sovereignty, start over, state of the art, stitch up, strategy, stoked (see gutted), street smart, sub set, substantive, symbiotic, syndrome, synergy, synthesis


tactical, tad (a) (I930s twee), tank (intransitive verb), that said, think (as in think money), think outside the box, thoughts and prayers (perfunctory and insincere), tick all boxes, tipping point, tolerably clear, top down, top line, transformative agenda, transparent (of language), transparency, traumatic, twenty four seven


unaccountable, unparalleled, unpack (figurative – seriously pretentious), unstructured, utilise


value add, vaunted, veritable, viable, vow (verb)


wake up call, wannabes, wash its face, watershed, weaponise, weaponising, wherein, win win, window of opportunity, woke, work in progress


zero sum game, zero tolerance

Logic – buzz words – cliches – political swipes.

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