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An Important Announcement

Sunday, November 06, 2005

In Argentina, Bush will come face-to-face with a man his administration has criticized as a menace to hemispheric stability — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. The State Department would like to make this important announcement.

"This summit is not about Hugo Chavez," says U.S. national security adviser Stephen Hadley. "This is not news."

We would like to thank Mr. Hadley for taking the time to tell us what was not important enough to think about.


Complaints:
From Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary:

temporize \TEM-puh-ryze\ verb

1 : to act to suit the time or occasion : yield to current or dominant opinion
*2 : to draw out discussions or negotiations so as to gain time

Example sentence:
The senators have been accused of temporizing while the budget crisis continues to worsen.

Did you know?
"Temporize" comes from the Medieval Latin verb "temporizare" ("to pass the time"), which itself comes from the Latin noun "tempus," meaning "time." ("Tempus" is also an ancestor of such words as "tempo," "contemporary," and "temporal.") If you need to buy some time, you might resort to temporizing — but you probably won't win admiration for doing so. "Temporize" can have a somewhat negative connotation. For instance, a political leader faced with a difficult issue might temporize by talking vaguely about possible solutions without actually doing anything. The point of such temporizing is to avoid taking definite — and possibly unpopular — action, in hopes that the problem will somehow go away. But the effect is often just to make matters worse.

*Indicates the sense illustrated in the example sentence.
 
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