You’d have to be lucky enough not to have been paying attention to the verbal emanations of the world’s central banks not to know that they’ve aimed to pulverize difficulties like chronically low inflation with things like bazookas and bullets and sledgehammers and big guns and kitchen sinks and the like. Before long they’ll be detonating all of the nuclear weapons of monetary policy under the thing to get it to go up by a basis point or two, they hope. But some pedantic economic linguists don’t like the martial turn of phrase at all, not because it doesn’t sound good, but because actual bazookas and sledgehammers, you know, do things.
Some in the field call for a cliché cease-fire, including economist Kallum Pickering at Germany’s Berenberg Bank. “Here’s the problem I have with metaphors: Sometimes you don’t give a true picture of what’s happening,” he said. “I’m worried that it’s reinforcing a view that central banks can do something about the situation we are facing.”