Bill.Mullins at US.ARMY.MIL
Tue Nov 8 06:42:51 UTC 2005
I heard "sherpa" used in the context described below in the 9/11/2005 cite on All Things Considered on NPR today. This is a new one on me. It seems to have evolved from the sense in the 1993 cite, which sense is in the OED from 1980.
"Political 'Sherpas' help nominees avoid confirmation crags, pitfalls;" Christopher Lee; WASHINGTON POST
St. Louis Post-Dispatch 09-11-2005 p. A-12
" The presiding political mind was not a top White House aide or a legal eagle from the Justice Department but lobbyist Kenneth Duberstein, a former Reagan administration official who was Thomas' designated "sherpa" -- his guide through the potentially treacherous process. . . . The role of the sherpa, named for the Tibetan guides who assist climbers in the Himalayas, is largely off camera and unpaid."
WANT TO WORK IN THE NEW ADMINISTRATION? -
PREPARE TO JUMP THROUGH HOOPS
Jupiter Courier (FL)
December 3, 2000
Author: Dale McFeatters Scripps Howard News Service p. A4
"The White House will probably assign you a "sherpa," a veteran Washington operative, to guide you through the confirmation process and to ensure you're quietly placed on an outbound bus if something unsavory surfaces."
"Inside Report" By Rowland Evans and Robert Novak;
San Antonio Express-News 03-01-1993 page ED1
" Dispatched to Washington to start arranging next summer's economic summit to be held in Tokyo, a Japanese official searched in vain for a U.S. "sherpa"-- the Himalayan word for pack bearer that is used to describe officials who do the tough preparatory work for summits. "
MICHAEL MCCURRY WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY HOLDS REGULAR NEWS BRIEFING;
Washington Transcript Service 05-05-1998
*** Elapsed Time 00:26, Eastern Time 15:11 ***
" Because Mr. Berger is out of town, as some of you know, we'll
probably do our briefing here on Monday with Mr. Steinberg, deputy national
security adviser, who's the -- our sherpa for the G-7 and Summit of the
Eight, and we'll have Gene Sperling and Sandy as well. "
I have heard "rabbi" used similarly to this newer sense of sherpa, as in one who is a guide through some political labyrinth or process (see the last three cites in OED 2.b.). W.E.B. Griffin uses this sense often in his Philadelphia cop books -- the "Badge of Honor" series.
More information about the Ads-l