Supreme Court-Related Buzzwords Dominate List of Top Political Buzzwords

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Top 15 Includes: Â?The Supremes,Â? Â?Activist Judges,Â? the Â?Nuclear Option,Â? Â?Out-of-the Mainstream,Â? and Â?FilibusterÂ?. Though CheneyÂ?s Â?Last ThroesÂ? Bests Â?QuagmireÂ? as No. 1 on the List

Supreme Court-Related Buzzwords Dominated List of Top Political Buzzwords released earlier today by the Global Language Monitor ( The Top 15 Included: ‘The Supremes,’ ‘Activist Judges,’ the ‘Nuclear Option,’ ‘Out-of-the Mainstream,’ and ‘Filibuster,’ according to GLM’s Political-sensitivity Quotient Index (PQ Index) for the first half of 2005.

“The fact that the Buzzword list was compiled immediately preceding the announcement by Justice O’Connor that she would resign her seat on the Court, further strengthens the argument that the impending battle over the first vacancy in 11 years will be a mighty one, indeed,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of GLM.

Vice President Cheney’s use of the word ‘throes’ widely taken to mean the imminent demise of the Iraq Insurgency was the fastest rising political buzzword. ‘Throes’ bested No. 2 ‘quagmire,’ and No. 3 ‘credibility’ atop GLM’s Political Buzzword List for 2005. Others in the Index included: insurgency, European Union (Dead), Schaivo, Supreme Court, ‘activist Judges,’ and the ‘nuclear option’.

The PQ Index is a proprietary algorithm that tracks politically sensitive words and phrases in the media and on the Internet. The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets. GLM publishes the PQ Index on a quarterly basis.

The Top Politically-sensitive Words for the First Half of 2005:

No. 1: Throes

Comment: Cheney’s ‘Last Throes’ remark appears to fly in the face of the Administration’s tight discipline.

Factor: The fastest riser in the Index by far (up nearly 500% in month).

No. 2: Quagmire

Comment: Actually means ‘quaking mire’ and as the Insurgency continues, the quagmire cry escalates.

Factor: Up nearly 1500% for the year.

No. 3: Credibility (Bush/Cheney)

Comment: Series of missteps in usually disciplined media machine apparently causing a problem.

Factor: Up 300% in month.

No. 4: Insurgency

Comment: By definition, you don’t know the true ‘last throes’ of a battle until it’s actually over.

Factor: Up some 300% in the month.

No. 5: European Union (Dead)

Comment: Though quietly spoken of all year, the French and the Dutch NO votes caused a spike here.

Factor: Up 1600% for the year.

No. 6: Schaivo

Comment: She has come to stand for a far greater battle than that between her husband and her family.

Factor: The numbers continue to rise, even after her death.

No. 7: Supreme Court

Comment: The stakes are particularly high this year and the numbers show it.

Factor: Up over 800% for the year.

No. 8: Likeability (Bush)

Comment: According to the PQI, Bush and ‘likeability’ are still rising despite recent problems.

Factor: Up about 250% as supporters apparently rally round their W.

No. 9: Incurious

Comment: Bush seems impervious to the ‘incurious’ charge though the numbers rise modestly.

Factor: Charge remains as a low hum in the background.

No. 10: Activist Judges

Comment: How come we never here alarming reports about inActivist judges?

Factor: Up over 900% for the year

No. 11: Nuclear Option

Comment: It’s been cited in the media over 100,000 times; can someone please explain it to the public?

Factor: Up 1800% for the year.

No. 12: John Paul II

Comment: Still casting a long shadow, longer still in his absence.

Factor: Up another 200% in the preceding month.

No. 13: Persistent Vegetative State

Comment: You have to wonder if the sudden rise in the last month is referring to the state of the Congress.

Factor: Up 200% in the last month.

No. 14: Out of the Mainstream

Comment: There should be a rule: If 50% of the public supports an issue, pols can’t make an ‘out of the mainstream’ argument.

Factor: Up 200% for the month.

No. 15: Filibuster

Comment: From the Spanish, Filibusteer.

Factor: With all the talk of the ‘nuclear option’, the filibuster ranks among the top political terms few actually understand.

Other words being tracked for the index include ‘bubble’, the Indian Ocean ‘tsunami,’ and ‘Hillary Clinton’.

The Global Language Monitor documents, analyzes, and tracks the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture, with a particular emphasis upon Global English.

For more information, call 1.925.367.7557, send email to or visit


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