A head start for the historians: Perhaps it was because in the final weekend of campaigning she fell back on that hoariest and most boneheaded of political cliches, the boiled-frog canard?*
“If you want to boil a frog, don’t put it in hot water because it will jump right out,” she said. “You put it in cold water and then turn up the heat gradually and it’s a goner.”
Mrs. Clinton punctuates the parable by declaring that “we have got to figure out how not to be the frog in cold water.”
OK. But we have also got to figure out how, for the sake of scientific accuracy, freshness in language, and the dignity of the poor frogs, we can stop talking about them in this heartless and formulaic way. (By the way, minus points to the New York Times for reporting the episode as if Sen. Clinton were using a clever image.) Soon, I will release the results of the contest to find other words to get across the point that people can get used to slowly worsening circumstances that would shock them if confronted all at once.
If you're ready for more on the topic, try this, this, this, this, and this. And I'm an equal-opportunity frog defender: I'm picking on Hillary Clinton at the moment because she's the only one I've noticed picking on the frogs.
* Yes, yes, I understand the irony of using canard to describe a tale about les grenouilles