HACK is a pejorative term that refers to a worn-out or inferior party worker or government official. It refers to one who only goes through the motions in carrying out his or her duties. Hack is derived from a hackney horse, a horse that is broken down and let out for hire.
Reference: William Safire, Safire's New Political Dictionary ( New York: Random House, 1993).
HANCOCK, WINFIELD SCOTT ( 1824-1886) was born at Montgomery Square, Pennsylvania on February 14, 1824. Educated at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, ( 1840-1844), his entire adult life was spent in military service; even his presidential nomination by the Democratic Party in 1880 did not bring his resignation nor interrupt his army career, a career that was by all measures a distinguished one. While commended for bravery in battle during the Mexican War (1846-1848), it was the Civil War that was to establish Hancock's national reputation, particularly his field command of Union troops under General George G. Meade at the battle of Gettysburg, where Hancock was to suffer a serious wound painful to him for the remainder of his life. Returning to the field eight months later, March of 1864, Hancock served under Ulysses S. Grant during the Wilderness campaign. In writing his war Memoirs in the last years of his life, Grant was to credit highly Hancock's command abilities, yet personal animosity had earlier existed between the two men, Hancock believing that President Grant and Republican congressional leaders had consistently denied him the assignments and promotions that were his due. Hancock, essentially apolitical, but known to regard himself as a Democrat, held that it was this latter affiliation that caused his perceived ill treatment. Perhaps no small