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Top Ten “Top Ten Words” of 2008

 1.  Top 10 Words in the Presidential Election:  “The audacity of hope and change we can believe in.”  (Memo to future historians asking if this can really be the slogan that won an election:  yes, it can).

2.  Top 10 Words in the MSM Election Coverage:  “You know . . . I felt this thrill going up my leg.”

3.  Top 10 Words in the New York Times for an Unidentified Source:  “person speaking anonymously because he was not authorized to speak.”

4.  Top 10 Words in the New York Times for Al Qaeda in Iraq:  “homegrown Sunni extremist group American intelligence agencies say is foreign-led.”

5.  Top 10 Words in the MSM for Terrorist:  “gunman,” “militant,” “extremist,” “member of a military wing,” “agrarian reformer” (that last one may have been from a different list).

6.  Top 10 Words in the Daily State Department Press Conference:  “two states living side by side in peace and security.”

7.  Top 10 Words for Diplomatically Describing This Year’s Failed Peace Process:  “narrowing the gaps on borders and identifying and distilling differences” (Dennis Ross). (Code:  “narrowing the gaps” means Israeli concessions; “distilling differences” means Palestinian suggestions for further concessions).

8.  Top 10 Words for Unwavering Commitment:  “I can no more disown him than my white grandmother.”  (Eight Word Runner Up:  “Let me be clear . . . [Jerusalem] must remain undivided.”)

9.  Top 10 Words by Caroline Kennedy on Her Senate Ambition:  “In our family you always think about going into politics”.  (Thirty-Nine Word Runner Up:  “While I was thinking about it in my own head, and in my heart, talking to my children and my husband, ya know people started coming up to me and saying ‘Why don’t you be senator you’d be great’ . . .”).

10.  Top 10 Words in the Governor of Illinois household:  “f—–g golden,” “f—–g appreciation,” “f—–g nothing,” “f—–g Chicago Tribune editorial.”  (May technically only be seven words).



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