Quote: "I’ve noticed a change. It’s a lot of lobbyists eating with each other." John Breaux in Time.
Figure of Speech: meiosis (mie-O-sis), the shrinking figure.
Many years ago, when Figaro was a journalist in Washington, the restaurants were awful and elected officials made the big decisions. Now the restaurants are great, and government has been outsourced to lobbyists. John Breaux, a former Senator from Louisiana and a top lobbyist, acknowledges both facts with a meiosis ("to shrink"), a figure that diminishes what it describes.
The meiosis is a particularly deft form of insult; at its best, it creates a vivid image that’s hard to shake. For instance, an anonymous wit once described wilderness as "a damp place where birds fly about uncooked."
We can rest assured that many birds are getting cooked in Washington. Including the nation’s goose.
Snappy Answer: "Putting on weight, Mr. Breaux?"