Double down, with or without the hyphen, has a number of different slang meanings. But the most relevant one appears to be the sense in which it’s used in gambling, in blackjack, to be precise. The literal definition of the gambling term doesn’t make clear, though, at least not to this nongambler, why it should be used metaphorically as it seems to be. And so I found what Urban Dictionary has to say helpful.
One of its definitions for double down is “to engage in risky behavior, especially when one is already in a dangerous situation.” The reference continues, “This figurative usage as appearing in the Oxford English Dictionary is a meaningful explanation of ‘double down’ other than the ubiquitous ‘to double the wager in exchange for only one additional card in Blackjack gambit’ in every online dictionary.”
from The Christian Science Monitor, (2/12/12)
In the news… Sheldon Adelson plans to double down on campaign donations, Salon, 12/5/12
People in the media, academia and HR departments who are concerned deeply about getting the ethnic mix of people just right.
one who exposes or ridicules the falseness, sham, or exaggerated claims of another
One can readily see that debunk is constructed from the prefix de-, meaning “to remove,” and the word, ‘bunk’, but what is the origin of the word, ‘bunk’, denoting the nonsense that is to be removed? ‘Bunk’ came from a place where much bunk has originated, the United States Congress. During the 16th Congress (1819-1821) Felix Walker, a representative from western North Carolina whose district included Buncombe County, carried on with a dull speech in the face of protests by his colleagues. Walker later explained he had felt obligated “to make a speech for Buncombe.” Such a masterful symbol for empty talk could not be ignored by the speakers of the language, and Buncombe, spelled Bunkum in its first recorded appearance in 1828 and later shortened to bunk, became synonymous with claptrap. The response to all this bunk seems to have been delayed, for debunk is not recorded until 1923.
In a tweet…
@heyprofbow Not “may,” WILL—Scientifically proven. Never repeat a RW frame when debunking. Try NOT to think of an elephant @Political_Bill
(Thanks to @WinningWordsPro for recommending The Debunking Handbook.)