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Tar baby

Posted by ESC on August 03, 2011 at 23:01

Republican congressman Doug Lamborn of Colorado is in hot water after saying on a radio show that working with President Obama on the debt ceiling was like “touching a tar baby.” (News One for Black America, 01 Aug 2011) A story about his troubles has a link to an interesting discussion of the use of "tar baby." "All words have life cycles," says Erin McKean, editor-in-chief of the Oxford American Dictionary "What's really important is not etymologically what it means, but the effect it has." Why "Tar Baby" Is Such a Sticky Phrase, by TA-NEHISI PAUL COATES, Time USA, Aug. 01, 2006,8599,1221764,00.html#ixzz1U0dd17p7