I think these sporadic attacks come as a result of unmet urges. He wants to say the "wrong" thing but cannot. He ends up going into an algorithmic loop searching for the politically correct thing or is trying to steer away from a "Lena Dunham" Q-ratings plunge type disaster. That's why we get "They, they , they, they...." I noticed this last week when Robin said something that triggered in Howard an almost spasmodic utterance. He sooo wanted to say something inappropriate but knew he could not and what resulted was an uncomfortable stream of hiccuping, stuttering gibberish for almost 20-seconds. Robin let out a nervous laugh and said "What was that?" and then they went into commercial. I don't remember what triggered this but since that time I've noticed he does this quite a bit.