Remember when people used to say, “It’s the economy, stupid!”?
The slogan began as an office sign by Bill Clinton’s political strategist to remind campaign workers of the central issue. It wasn’t the insult some have interpreted it to be, any more than Keep It Simple, Stupid! was ever intended as a major insult. As the real, live human beings that we are, we simply remember slogans better than long-winded statements.
Writers especially are always being told to keep it simple. Most of us strive for a conversational tone in blogs and articles, even when we’re told our sentences are still too long or “too 8th grade”! We try not to lose members of our multi-faceted audience.
It’s not that difficult to compartmentalize writing and a lot depends on the topic but many people will never read past 6th grade level. They don’t have the opportunity to read many books while they are younger. Life isn’t fair but many free, enjoyable books are available to improve skills and knowledge. We just need to fix the public transportation system so people can access the books at that wonderful place called a library. Not everyone can afford an e-reader. In the meantime, writers can do a lot not to make things any messier for others.
For better or worse, slogans have been a part of Americana and other cultures for centuries. (Have fun on Google, looking them up.) Some of the oldest advertising was in Ancient Babylon, China, and Great Britain. And slogans became popular a couple of centuries ago. Remember Tippecanoe and Tyler Too? Of course you don’t, but your ancestors alive in 1840 heard it! Then there’s The Real Thing, Sow the Seeds of Victory, Where’s the Beef? The slogans kept coming.
The fact is the economy was a major issue that needed addressing at the time of the Clinton campaign. It still is but now the world is even more complex with the looming international currency crises.
People in general picked up on “It’s the economy, stupid!” slogan, and going forward, were usually talking to and about wannabe politicians, though it spread directly into other areas. There’s even an online game by that name for those with time on their hands. After that came “It’s still the economy, stupid!”
For most of us, and particularly for those who are self-employed, it will always be the economy…except when it’s not.