During Wednesday night's presidential debate, @Fritinancy tweeted a quip that got my eye:
She caught on to the fact that Mitt Romney used a variation of the name of The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, often referred to as Simpson-Bowles, but also as Bowles-Simpson.
This piqued my lingo interests so I downloaded the CNN transcript and dug up some fascinating facts.
It is Mitt Romney who first introduces the term Bowles-Simpson and Obama follows his lead, but then Jim Lehrer introduces the Simpson-Bowles variation and Romney follows his lead...until he doesn't. Obama never used the Simpson-Bowles version and Lehrer never used the Bowles-Simpson version.
Here are all instances of the term from the debate:
21:21:38: ROMNEY: …And so what I do is I bring down the tax rates, lower deductions and exemptions, the same idea behind Bowles-Simpson, by the way, get the rates down, lower deductions and exemptions, to create more jobs, because there's nothing better for getting us to a balanced budget than having more people working, earning more money, paying more taxes.
21:28:37: OBAMA:… Governor ROMNEY earlier mentioned the Bowles-Simpson commission. Well, that's how the commission -- bipartisan commission that talked about how we should move forward suggested we have to do it, in a balanced way with some revenue and some spending cuts.
21:31:34: LEHRER: Governor, what about Simpson-Bowles? Do you support Simpson-Bowles?
21:31:34: ROMNEY: Simpson-Bowles, the president should have grabbed that.
21:31:35: LEHRER: No, I mean, do you support Simpson-Bowles?
21:31:36: ROMNEYI have my own plan. It's not the same as Simpson-Bowles. But in my view, the president should have grabbed it. If you wanted to make some adjustments to it, take it, go to Congress, fight for it.
22:11:10: ROMNEY… That's one way one could do it. One could follow Bowles-Simpson as a model and take deduction by deduction and make differences that way.
I can't help but be reminded of the classic Krauss and Weinheimer (1964) experiments Changes in reference phrases as a function of frequency of usage in social interaction. I can't find the paper online, but it involves two participants converging on a shared (typically short) form of a name for an unknown new object.
Friday, October 5, 2012
In the spirit of Dr. Emily Bender’s NAACL blog post Putting the Linguistics in Computational Linguistics , I want to apply some of her thou...
The commenters over at Liberman's post Apico-labials in English all clearly prefer the spelling syncing , but I find it just weird look...
Purpose: This post reviews my experience interviewing for a Linguist position at Google in Santa Monica, CA on February 29, 2008. I've ...
Good ol' Sitemeter never fails to yield its share of fascinating factoids. For example, earlier today some brave Canadian Googler found...