Runner-up for the dimwitticism of the month was "in terms of," appearing 9,071 times. Third was "basically" (6,824, including 42 times in The Oklahoman — some, in our defense, in direct quotes from sources). Fiske's "The Dimwit's Dictionary" says "ongoing" has "superseded practically all of its synonyms," giving us ongoing relationships, ongoing education, ongoing effort and — a favorite in these parts — ongoing investigation. It's enough to make us call Usually Reliable Source (son of the Right Rev. Highly Unimpeachable Source) for input on the means by which the female ruminant gormandized the brassicaceae. To translate, in case the Factiva word cops have an ongoing wiretap on us, that phrase basically means "how the cow ate the cabbage."
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