ratchet

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ratchet

1. a device in which a toothed rack or wheel is engaged by a pawl to permit motion in one direction only
2. the toothed rack or wheel forming part of such a device

ratchet

[′rach·ət]
(design engineering)
A wheel, usually toothed, operating with a catch or a pawl so as to rotate in only a single direction.
References in periodicals archive ?
You can see that there's going to be support for ratcheting down provider rates," said Gleason, who advises large employers and private-equity firms on the implications of government policy.
At that time, the stock market was still ratcheting down after the bursting of the Internet dot-com bubble in 2000.
But relations across the Taiwan Strait have warmed since Ma took office last year on a platform of ratcheting down cross-strait tensions.
If a life is worth less to the government, then there is less need for regulations such as ratcheting down C[o.
From banning happy hours to outlawing pub crawls to ratcheting down the blood alcohol content (BAC) that defines drunk driving, elected officials are pursuing all sorts of neoprohibitionist policies that soak up limited police resources without increasing public safety.
We're not just saying, 'The sky is falling, the sky is falling,' inartificially ratcheting down services or implementing process controls, because none of that stuff works.
But make no mistake, each weapon handed in is a victory for common sense and decency, a ratcheting down of the tension in the arms race between the rival criminal gangs.
9 whether that response was aimed at ratcheting down the US rhetoric, Gates replied: "In the last few weeks there's been an effort in Washington actually to tone down everybody else.
Asked later whether his response was aimed at ratcheting down the American rhetoric, he replied: In the last few weeks there's been an effort in Washington actually to tone down everybody else.
Even commercial payers have been ratcheting down their reimbursement rates.
That's why experts keep ratcheting down what's "normal.
We both, for example, rely heavily on data and projections developed by the United Nation's Population Division, which in recent years has been ratcheting down its estimates of future population By 2300, the United Nations projects that world population could be below the level of 1960, and that the United States will shrink back to the population it had in 1950--only with a far greater share of eiders.