weasel words


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Related to weasel words: Weasel family

weasel words

Language employed to avoid directly stating a position or answering a question, or to enhance the appearance of something. Wikipedia discourages the use of weasel words in its encyclopedia entries to decrease the possibility of bias. If you read the transcript of his press conference, you'll see that there's barely any substances—it's nearly all weasel words.
See also: weasel, word

weasel word

A word used to deprive a statement of its force or evade a direct commitment, as in Calling it "organized spontaneity" is using a weasel word; "organized" has sucked the meaning out of "spontaneity." This idiom may allude to the weasel's habit of sucking the contents out of a bird's egg, so that only the shell remains. [Late 1800s]
See also: weasel, word
References in periodicals archive ?
Competent writers and wary constitutionalists will readily spot the use of these weasel words when reading reports of the extraordinary expansion of presidential or legislative power.
Those of their number who seek to live by weasel words run the risk of dying by them.
As soon as I entered my serial number, their computer spit back a set of weasel words telling me that my time had run out.
Legitimate objective and reasonable exercise are weasel words that the courts at all levels, with only rare exceptions, have stretched beyond recognition in support of the insatiable meddlesome and confiscatory demands of Leviathan.
What would convince politicians that honesty wins, weasel words don't; candor wins, evasive language doesn't; belief wins, pragmatism doesn't?
This session includes weasel words are a waste, winning words are wonderful, constant calls create constant cash, organization offers opportunity, and speak to sell.
6 billion years, and Mr Shield should know, because his letter is full of weasel words.
Their attempted justifications are weasel words from inadequates who shirk any responsibility for their actions.
Mr Ford also accused unionists of using weasel words after an Irish League match in Belfast was called off after a flag protest.
The latest in this ever-growing game of weasel words is called "The Liverpool Care Pathway", shortened to LCP, (or as it is known in Wales, "The Wales Care Pathway").
The only way to control bankers is to introduce both prison and financial penalties soon and not be taken in by any more weasel words and excuses.
They thought that their weasel words about wanting to protect good public pension would convince them that a reasonable deal had been put on the table.
These weasel words of course are part of a history that has been fed to voters ever since Ted Heath lied to the electorate over what membership of the then Common Market entailed.
MY job is to ferret out the weasel words politicians use to disguise their true intentions.
Success and happiness are two weasel words when it comes to human beings.