Another political term that I cam across in Robert Caro’s Passage of Power, volume four of his autobiography of Lyndon Johnson.  The term comes from European and Latinate origins, but it seems to have been laundered through West African pidgin, where the term was used to refer to a conference between two sides, often tribal leaders.  This is certainly the meaning LBJ imbued it with.  

Over time, the term has mostly picked up a negative connotation.  Now the word signifies a prolonged or draw out conversation, often weighed down by jargon.  This seems to be an interesting indication of how our views on politics have shifted in the last fifty years.

The word can also be used as a verb.


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