A classic tout.

In our journalese dictionary definition of headline favorite “tout,” we write: “Don’t wait for one like this: ‘Pope touts peace in Yule rap’.” That was because tout has a sleazy origin: A tout is a guy who whispers tips on horse races, intending to make a buck if his supposed inside info on a sure nag happens to win a race.

Well, the Boston Globe, Jan. 24, 2018, came close to topping our invented example of the Pope as a tout. A page one, top story about Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker’s State of the Commonwealth speech, ran under this headline: “In address, Baker touts teamwork, decency.”

File under: Candidate for Profile in Courage Award.

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