Word of the Day – August 28, 2012

bumble (verb)

BUM buhl

to blunder; stumble; botch (“bumbler” is the noun)

Only once in modern history has the substance of a presidential candidate’s comments in a debate mattered politically. That was in 1976, when the incumbent, Gerald Ford, appeared to say that Poland, then part of the Soviet bloc, was not subject to Communist control. A fair-minded observer could parse what Ford was trying to say — that the free spirit of the Polish people would never be quashed. But the episode fit Ford’s image as a bumbler and gave Jimmy Carter a decisive debate “win.”
James Fallows     July/August 2004

… from More Words That Make A Difference

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