Here is the background:
Language Log's "Lucking out"
Language Log's "More lucking out"
Superlinguo's "Lucking out"TYWKIWDBI's "'Lucking out' can be good -- or bad."
The answer to my semantic interpretation of "luck out" can be found in my response to Superlinguo's post, which follows:
"Lucking out" was always a positive in my youth. Its use was so common in Michigan that many people turned the phrasal verb into a noun. "You got a pony for your birthday...you are such a luck-out."
Upon further analysis, I thought to compare "luck out" to some other idiomatic phrasal verbs that end in "out".
Here is what I came up with:
For some reason, I could not think of one example that carries a positive semantic interpretation.
I wonder if that could be part of the reason that some people think of lucking out as a negative.