Specious Watch

I wrote this week about an e-mail tiff between a gay PR man in Tampa and County Commissioner Ronda Storms, with an interesting intervention from Bay News 9's Al Ruechel. The story is here.

As an offshoot of that story, I looked into Storms' question about liberals using the term "specious." She asked if this was a calculated liberal move spread formally or just by word of mouth.

Here is what I wrote in answer to her rhetorical question:

SPECIOUS WATCH: Is Ronda right? Has the vast liberal cabal

universally adopted specious as Word of the Week? Storms gave me two

more examples: County mayor advocate Mary Ann Stiles called Storms'

argument against the plan "specious" in an April 14 Times article; and

Kathy Castor's use of the term to describe Storms during a dust-up the

two commissioners had the week after that.

Further, in recent months Sierra Clubber Darden Rice used "specious"

in a letter to the editor the past weekend in describing rationales for

drilling off Florida's Gulf Coast; Republican (in name only) Sen. Arlen

Specter called President Bush "specious" in a Washington Post article

about Bush's domestic wiretapping program; a Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch

op-ed writer called all TV-radio pundits "specious;" and a San

Francisco Chronicle critic called spinmeisters "specious."

So, post your favorite overuse, overwrought or overemotional terms — liberal or conservative — here and I'll run the best examples in my column.

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