'Forward' to the past
What's next? Making the Internationale our new national anthem?
The Obama campaign apparently didn't look backwards into history when selecting its new campaign slogan, "Forward" - a word with a long and rich association with European Marxism.
Many Communist and radical publications and entities throughout the 19th and 20th centuries had the name "Forward!" or its foreign cognates. Wikipedia has an entire section called "Forward (generic name of socialist publications)."
"The name Forward carries a special meaning in socialist political terminology. It has been frequently used as a name for socialist, communist and other left-wing newspapers and publications," the online encyclopedia explains.
The slogan "Forward!" reflected the conviction of European Marxists and radicals that their movements reflected the march of history, which would move forward past capitalism and into socialism and communism.
The Obama campaign released its new campaign slogan Monday in a 7-minute video. The title card has simply the word "Forward" with the "O" having the familiar Obama logo from 2008. It will be played at rallies this weekend that mark the Obama re-election campaign's official beginning.
There have been at least two radical-left publications named "Vorwaerts" (the German word for "Forward"). One was the daily newspaper of the Social Democratic Party of Germany whose writers included Friedrich Engels and Leon Trotsky. It still publishes as the organ of Germany's SDP, though that party has changed considerably since World War II. Another was the 1844 biweekly reader of the Communist League. Karl Marx, Engels and Mikhail Bakunin are among the names associated with that publication.
East Germany named its Army soccer club ASK Vorwaerts Berlin (later FC Vorwaerts Frankfort).
Vladimir Lenin founded the publication "Vpered" (the Russian word for "forward") in 1905. Soviet propaganda film-maker Dziga Vertov made a documentary whose title is sometimes translated as "Forward, Soviet" (though also and more literally as "Stride, Soviet").
If Obama wants to run as a socialist, he should make that very plain to the voter. I'm sick of liberals tip toeing around their ideology as if they were ashamed of the true nature of what they are advocating. Stand up and be proud of your political beliefs. If you want to establish a social democratic state, why the subterfuge?
The reason they don't is because they would likely be unable to get elected dog catcher just about anywhere except San Francisco and maybe New York city if they were truthful about it. So instead of honesty, we get these cutesy references like "Forward" that act as a dog whistle to most of their base while hiding their real ideology from the casual voter.
I once asked liberal pundit Tommy Christopher on my radio show whether there were any constitutional limits on seeking "social justice." He got mad that I asked the question, and then replied "no." That kind of honesty is lacking in the Obama campaign and the campaigns of many Democrats running for office in November.