The Origin Of The Term: Fiscal Cliff

NPR | Nov. 20, 2012 4:20 a.m. | Updated: Nov. 20, 2012 9:07 a.m.

The fiscal cliff has economists and politicians in a tailspin. The term is used to describe what will happen if Congress fails to come to an agreement on budget cuts or tax increases by the end of the year. Some are saying the term is inaccurate, and somewhat alarmist. Linda Wertheimer talks to linguist and “Boston Globe” language columnist Ben Zimmer about the origin of the term “fiscal cliff.”


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