I found the phrase, “pull away the punch bowl out of X” and “leave the punch bawl in X” in the following sentence of Time’ magazine’s article (May 17) titled “Is the Fed to blame for JPMorgan’s $2 bill blow-up”:
“It is said that the job of a central bank is to *pull away the punch bowl before it gets out of hand. While the Fed pays close attention to inflation, it has left the punch bowl out in the chase for risk assets and is contemplating spiking it even further.”
When I consulted the usage of “punch-bowl” with Oxford Advanced Learners’ English Dictionary, it simply states its definition as ‘a bowl in which punch is served.’ There was no mention about its idioms. The definition was almost same with other English dictionaries at hand.
I assume “punch bowl” here signifies the merit, benefit, advantage, offer, and anything people are attracted to. Am I right?
Are “Pull away the punch bowl from somebody’s hand” and “Leave punch bawl out there” idioms? If not, are phrases using “Punch bowl” as a metaphor in such way frequently observed in writings and daily conversation?