Johnny Fallon

Irish Political Commentator

Political Speak, what they say and what they mean…

Politicians very quickly become accustomed to using certain phrases and words to answer a question.  It is an essential part of the art of politics.  You avoid the obvious answer and manage to deflect.  So just for the hell of it, I decided to look at some of my favourites:


‘The government is looking at structures….’ The government is hoping for a miracle in the meantime
‘That matter will be carefully considered’ Stop asking about that matter
There will be further consultation needed…’ The civil servants need to talk to the usual heads first
‘There are a number of possibilities…’ I really haven’t a clue what we are going to do
‘I have met with the relevant parties…’ Give me more time
‘There will be a full report….’ I’ll answer when i’m told what to say
‘We must assess the impact…’ How many votes will this cost us?
‘We are drawing a line under the matter…’ I wish it would go away but wait till you see what’s coming next
‘As part of the budgetary process…’ I need cover and quick
‘The reality facing the government….’ The civil servants talked me down
‘We are willing to face the tough decisions…’ Please stop hating us we are terrified of an election
‘It’s an interesting proposal…’ Put it in the bin
‘Cost benefit analysis’ It might be good but I’m not spending anymore on it
The plan is working We are still working on a plan
The parliamentary party will discuss the matter The backbenchers will be whipped into line
I have made my position clear Leave me out of it we are not in the clear yet
‘A frank exchange of views’ There was a lot of un-parliamentary language
Steady progress Fingers crossed
We will honour our commitment We are currently looking for loopholes
Services must be protected Services are being cut
‘Let me assure you…’ Shut up
We are where we are I’m out of ideas
‘Putting the country first…’ No elections until the polls improve
‘I intend to carry out reforms’ You wont notice much change unless I point it out
Tax the wealthy Tax anybody on 10k more than me
‘Divert resources to those most in need’ I’m cutting the budget
‘A new style of government..’ Its our turn


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One thought on “Political Speak, what they say and what they mean…

  1. ‘With the greatest respect…’ = ‘You’re talking out of your arse.’

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