In light of this scandal, I felt obligated to revisit an old question of mine: why must all scandals now have the word “gate” conjugated with some key word? I understand the Watergate allusion, but a person investigating what Watergate was based on the use of the term in the vulgate would wrongly think Nixon must have instigated some water-related scandal.
Well, I investigated, and it seems it was William Safire who propagated this. It’s an annoying little thing, and ought to be expurgated. One or two such references are amusing, but in the aggregate they mitigate the humor of the thing.