Jan 182010

Cute rhetorical technique from the Boston Globe:

And in a veiled criticism of Brown, Coakley said she understood that “people are frustrated and angry,” but said there were no “easy answer to the tough questions.”

And how is that a veiled criticism of Brown?

Sounds to me like it’s an attack more than a criticism. Since she is a politician in the middle of a political campaign, we can be pretty sure Coakley is attacking Brown and not herself. No big deal there. It wouldn’t be the first time that one candidate has projected his/her own faults on another.

But what is veiled about it? Maybe the news writer meant muddled. Or clumsy. Or desperate.

But then, the use of any of those terms would be editorializing rather than reporting.

Perhaps the news writer doesn’t want to make Coakley look silly by just quoting her words, so is trying to give the impression that there is some subtlety to them.