pooh-bah

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pooh-bah

1. A self-important government official who holds several positions but performs little or no actual duties. The term comes from the character Pooh-Bah, Lord-High-Everything-Else, from The Mikado, a comic opera by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan. Only that pooh-bah in the cabinet could hold so many titles and do so little.
2. The most important or powerful person in a group, organization, business, or movement (e.g., the boss, leader, etc.). I think it sounds like a great idea, but you'll have to ask the pooh-bah first.
References in periodicals archive ?
Punditocracy pooh-bahs have had great fun mocking the idea that they, too, are part of this alleged "conspiracy.
AFTER all the dust has settled from the pundits and pooh-bahs, a great many of us average Joes out here would like to give a tip of the hat to our hometown hero, Sgt.
Now two more pooh-bahs, who could find no logical reason to strike down Proposition 140, have decided to say that we voters are so stupid as to not know what term limits mean.
Here are grounds enough, surely - unless one is a benighted fan of those smug and swollen pooh-bahs - for rejoicing.
The flames symbolized their ire toward the bowl alliance, a group of postseason pooh-bahs who snubbed the Cougars and shut them out of the Fiesta Bowl - more precisely, the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.
The Stop Sampras Movement is raging at Wimbledon, where the grand pooh-bahs of the All-England Club are reacting as if they were in the grip of mad ball disease.
Long before Cubans started building rafts from inner tubes and bed frames, the foreign policy pooh-bahs of the National Security Council were pondering how to alter U.
On his way out of the hotel, Archer explained that he had attended the conference merely to network with Washington pooh-bahs.
Since such pooh-bahs rarely deal with mere staffers, their entreaties signaled an all-out campaign.
As John MacArthur demonstrates in his devastating expose, Williams repeatedly lied and cozened the pooh-bahs of the media as he was fitting them for the straitjacket (or should we call it the flak jacket?
He confronted the military on gays and lifted abortion restrictions--and floated an energy tax, promoted managed-competition health care, drifted away from a middle-class income tax cut and hobnobbed with the pooh-bahs of the corporate class.
A recent hearing with Deputy Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger did not produce many new revelations, but it was valuable for its disclosure of the mindset of America's foreign poliby pooh-bahs.
When Senator Warren Rudman announced the up and would not run for re-election, official Washington emitted a sigh and the pooh-bahs of punditry rushed to hail Rudman, a moderate Republican, and lament his pending departure.
From Sid Blumenthal in The New Republic (one of the most effusive pieces of flattery in the history of public relations) to the innumerable friendly news and feature stories in The Washington Post and The New York Times to the great pooh-bahs of perennial punditry (see Safire giving the news that Clinton is good for Israel), the word has gone forth: Clinton is sound, thoughtful, pragmatic, modem, white, male and safe.
The novelist laughs at the Chinese leaders as stuffy pooh-bahs who publish their own poetry and make themselves ridiculous.