political skewering

Leonardo   Tue Aug 29, 2006 7:15 pm GMT
What does mean "political skewering" in the following sentence?

"It may provide some transitory pleasure from its ostensible equal-opportunity political skewering."
Deborah   Tue Aug 29, 2006 8:42 pm GMT
Leonardo, a skewer is a thin piece of wood or metal, pointed at one end, that is used to hold pieces of food together when they are grilled. If you imagine sticking this object into someone or something (figuratively), you'll get the idea of skewering in this sense. In the example you gave, it means that both sides of a political issue will be the objects of some sharp remarks, or skewering.
Robin   Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:35 am GMT
I disagree with that explanation. To skew something, is to shift the weight to that side.

This is one of the Google definitions: 2. To give a bias to; distort.

So, what is happening here, is an attempt to overcome a traditional skew, ie more men going into Engineering, by Equal Opportunity practices that ensure that as many women as men go into Engineering.

The article is suggesting that these 'Equal Opportunity' measures may provide some transitory pleasure. The assumption being that over time, market pressures will ensure that people get round the artificial Equal Opportunity rules to return to a more traditional distribution, in which more men than women go into Engineering.

I am using Engineering as an example, you use another example such as "Women in Child Care".
George   Wed Aug 30, 2006 6:21 am GMT
The quote that Leonardo posted is excerpted from a review of the film, "Thank You for Smoking", in which the writer remarks how this political satire pokes fun at both sides of the smoking debate, hence the phrase "equal-opportunity political skewering." In this case, "skewering" is synonymous with "mocking" or "lampooning". Therefore, Deborah's explanation is correct.

Consider the following examples that I found thru Google:

"Journalists, in other words, must resist employing political jargon — it tends to shortcut analysis in favor of mobilization. Even so, it's probably unfair to SKEWER the press for initially adopting the president’s language."

"Why didn't anyone SKEWER her for that like they did President Bush for reportedly saying that when he was contemplating attacking Iraq he prayed 'for the strength to do the Lord's will?'"

"Rather than examine this log that has created the broken family, we choose to SKEWER and lambaste the mote of gay and lesbian marriage."
Uriel   Wed Aug 30, 2006 8:46 am GMT
"Skewer" and "skew" are two very different words, even if they look similar. Political skewering is what Deborah defined it as. To skewer is to impale on a sharp object, as in being skewered on a sword, or on someone's sharp wit.
Leonardo   Wed Aug 30, 2006 11:07 am GMT
Thank you all!