All maneuvers in Tome of Battle have a clearly defined paragraph of flavor text, clearly marked in italics, and a rules text right below it.
I understand the first part of this rules text to be some sort of reprise of the flavor text. Look at Bounding Assault:
You combine speed and power into a deadly combination...
A guy I know says that, since it's not italics and it's out of the "fluff" paragraph, it must then be "crunch" and therefore, based on the following snippet, says that Punishing Stance only works with weapons (and not with every melee attack like its last lines seem to describe).
You hold your weapon overhead, allowing you to chop down with superior force.
Is it possible to determine who's right? Has there ever been a RAI interpretation (by which I mean, author's word) on this point, or a solid reasoning as to why it is one or the other way, based maybe on examples from the same book that only make sense if one of the readings is taken for true?
Note that melee touch attacks only count as attack-like for determinig if feats apply to them.