Still this is a useful word and the meaning is worth checking out. Here are some of the definitions – From Urban Dictionary
- A 19th century coinage, meaning a crooked and flamboyant politician. Later, in Maryland folklore, a monster half bird and half snake, that was used to frighten ex-slaves out of voting.
- A "carpetbagger". Somebody who will go to any lengths to achieve public office, regardless of party affiliation or platform.
- "A shrewd, unprincipled person, especially a politician."
Look at our Premier here in Victoria, John Brumby, who claims, despite a great deal of evidence to the contrary, that we are not in recession. Shrewd, certainly, unprincipled arguably, snollygoster? Well I guess that will depend what side of the political fence you sit on and in the current climate whether you have a job or not.
I know that politicians change their minds - I live in the eastern suburbs and I remember the pre-election promise that eastlink would not be a toll road, only to find a few short weeks after they were re-elected that the situation had changed. But how often is bad policy blamed on external influences and how often is political expediency used to mask the truth from the public?
Remember in the state budget last year that we were told we could expect four years of continued growth and that unemployment would remain at around 4-5% with a budget surplus approaching $800m/annum. Now we find that growth is flat, if not negative, that unemployment will climb to more than 7% and the surplus is gone, not only for this year but probably for the forseeable future too. I am an economic moron so I have no idea who to blame for this, but I guarantee you that politicians around the world will not only continue to blame the "worldwide economic crisis" but swine flu as well.
Watch the snollygostering continue.