We need to have a conversation in this country about soul-deadening political clichés. Listen closely and you’ll hear many candidates offer the same dodge to different issues. Lazy rhetorical devices plague our political discourse. But there is something especially grating about a candidate calling for a “conversation” when asked about an issue. It rings with the echo of empty ideas. It emanates the stench of platitude and prudence. The abstractness of the language renders the sentiment meaningless: Who, exactly, should be having these conversations? Where should they be taking place, and on what terms? - the catchall cop-out has been deployed in response to all manner of weighty policy. The truth is that when politicians are pleading for a national conversation, it is usually because they are trying to avoid one. '