pay lip service

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Related to pay lip service: lateral thinker

pay lip service

To give a false or insincere declaration that one supposedly values, supports, respects, or believes in something. Fighting homelessness was touted as his primary agenda during his campaign, but so far it looks like he was only paying lip service. I'm tired of politicians who do nothing but pay lip service to the major issues affecting our country.
See also: lip, pay, service
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

pay lip service (to something)

Fig. to express loyalty, respect, or support for something insincerely. You don't really care about politics. You're just paying lip service to the candidate. Don't sit here and pay lip service. Get busy!
See also: lip, pay, service
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

lip service, to give/pay

An insincere expression of friendship, devotion, or support. Both the Old and New Testaments contain references to honoring God or Jesus only with one’s lips (Isaiah 29:13; Matthew 15:8). The religious association is maintained in an early English reference, “Pleasing themselves in their lip-service in bearing a part in it,” in the 1644 Directory for the Publique Worship Throughout the Three Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland.
See also: give, lip, pay, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
We cannot afford to pay lip service to the provision of quality education in our gateway state.
Don''t just pay lip service to buying British, it''s up to the Government to ensure we support British.
The Government pay lip service to cutting down alcoholism.
Is it apathy on behalf of both parties or is it they only pay lip service to safety, unless, of course, an accident occurs and
Let's hope this time they do more than pay lip service - before it's too late.
PAY LIP SERVICE: George puckers up to mystery buyer
Most farmers pay lip service to animal welfare, the transport of live animals is a national disgrace, which the farming unions turn a blind eye to.
"The manufacturers tell us that if they hadn't applied some weight saving, the vehicle would have been even heavier, but that's not really an argument for me." Murray is rather dismissive of OEMs in their attempts to shed weight, saying, "Until now, car companies tend to pay lip service. They may set up a separate studio and give it autonomy but in reality it still has to operate within the rules.
More people pay lip service to the importance of intellectual property (IP) than understand how to profit from innovative ideas.
The question divides the city's intelligentsia between those who believe engagement with foreign architects is a necessary part of the country's cultural evolution and those who condemn successive leaders for spending too much on ego-driven architects who at best pay lip service to Chinese sensibilities.
Now, more than ever, it is crucial that greyhound racing is seen to be getting its house in order so far as welfare is concerned and, fortunately, in Lord Lipsey we have a leader who recognizes that and does far more that pay lip service to the subject as many others in authority have in the past.
The sorry fact is that while Martin and some of the provincial premiers still pay lip service to the Christian faith, not one of them is willing to follow the example set by President Bush in upholding the sanctity of human life and the fundamental importance of marriage between a man and a woman.
many of them just pay lip service to using recycled materials.
Policymakers in Japan and abroad pay lip service to the idea of reform but fear the very change that will cause reform to happen.
"Jurisdictions that put these in have to do more than pay lip service to traffic safety."