Writing for Forbes, Lawrence Hunter describes the White House’s “campaign to hoist the Court on the petard of conservative justice Antonin Scalia’s words,” based on the Justice’s “expansive view of . . . the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause.”Let's picture this image. Scalia's words will "hoist" — lift up — the Supreme Court. And his words are — it's a metaphor — a "petard":
The word petard comes from the Middle French peter, to break wind, from pet expulsion of intestinal gas, from Latin peditum, from neuter of peditus, past participle of pedere, to break wind; akin to Greek bdein to break wind. (Merriam-Webster) Petard remains a French word meaning a firecracker today (in French slang, it means a handgun, or a marijuana cigarette).Did Lawrence Hunter just bumble into that super-apt metaphor? Not only are the words of a Supreme Court Justice equated to farting, but Scalia was farting about marijuana, and a "petard" is both farting and a marijuana cigarette!
The word remains in modern usage in the phrase hoist with one's own petard, which means "to be harmed by one's own plan to harm someone else" or "to fall into one's own trap," literally implying that one could be lifted up (hoist, or blown upward) by one's own bomb.Or fart, right?
By the way, is anyone arguing that insurance companies should be required to cover the cost of marijuana? People are going to doctors, getting a
Think about it.
And pass the petard.