This article was like a breath of fresh water.
“…Reading that felt a little like stepping on a stair that wasn’t there: it was jarring to go from the image of “dinner tables” to the image of “a galaxy”, as though giant balls of flaming hydrogen could give dinner-parties. But that’s what a mixed metaphor does: it combines incongruent or incompatible images in a lingustically gauche way.”
If you like mixed metaphors, President Obama is quite a fruitful goldmine. You could say that he’s one of the backsliders purposely striding towards a future where our embrace of the English language is repellent.
I think Obama needs to count his chickens before they cross the road and come home to roost, and stop pawning words in the discount bin for the highest bidder. He needs to pack up his cowboy hat and stop catering to wealthy one-percenter fatcats who refuse to shed their puppy fat, and who pick the pockets of the remaining 75% with the reckless precision of racketeering wolves, and who aren’t very nice people besides.
“We’ve got more work to do than to just try to dig ourselves out of these self-inflicted wounds.” (source)
“As we consider the road that unfolds before us” (source)
“If we can get that done, that takes a big bite out of the fiscal cliff” (source)
“The lines of tribe shall soon dissolve” (source – more an unpleasant double entendre than a mixed metaphor)
“This is the moment when we must defeat terror and dry up the well of extremism that supports it.” (source)
“I’m willing to eliminate whatever we can honestly afford to do without. But let’s make sure that we’re not doing it on the backs of our most vulnerable citizens.” (source)
I think there were some mixed metaphors in The Audacity of Hope, but finding them is like shooting haystacks in a barrel with the broad side of a knife.