November 1, 2013 7:48 PM   Subscribe

What are some famous examples of historic campaign slogans and mottoes?

What I'm looking for are slogans, mantras, mottos, rally cries, quotes, phrases, expressions which stay with us even today.

For instance, slogans used to do great things requiring banding together. Also, something like President Kennedy's, "We choose to go to the moon," fits the bill even though there's more to it.

I'm looking not for just stirring quotes, but slogans which people rallied behind.

Eat, Drink and Be Merry, for tomorrow we may die!
Only YOU can prevent forest fires.

Bonus points: The older the better. What slogan-type expressions have been used throughout history? Ie Amor Vincit Omnia, and so on.
posted by Mike Mongo to Society & Culture (35 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I like Ike.
Whip inflation now!
54-40 or fight!
posted by vrakatar at 7:49 PM on November 1, 2013

I like Ike - Eisenhower presidency campaign slogan
posted by JujuB at 7:50 PM on November 1, 2013

Best answer: Carthago delenda est has to be one of the oldest.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 8:03 PM on November 1, 2013 [7 favorites]

There's Obama's famous "Yes, We Can," whose Spanish incarnation Sí se puede actually dates back to Cesar Chavez.

Much older: SPQR
posted by Rhaomi at 8:05 PM on November 1, 2013 [1 favorite]

Nivelle's Ils ne passeront pas! (They shall not pass!), referring to the Germans at Verdun, was picked up by the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War as ¡No pasarán!, and it remains a staple anti-fascist slogan.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 8:11 PM on November 1, 2013 [1 favorite]

Plop plop, fizz fizz, oh what a relief it is!
posted by Specklet at 8:14 PM on November 1, 2013

It's finger lickin' good!
Keep Calm and Carry On
We can do it! (Rosie the riveter)
Have a Coke and a smile!
posted by Specklet at 8:32 PM on November 1, 2013

My suggestions all seem to come from wars.

I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat. -- Winnie The Churchill
Come and Take It -- The citizens of Gonzales, TX
Remember The Maine! -- Yellow Journalists who wanted a war to sell newspapers.
posted by Mad_Carew at 8:55 PM on November 1, 2013

'The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Working Men of All Countries, Unite!'
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 9:01 PM on November 1, 2013

"Give 'em Hell, Harry!"

Said by supporters of Harry S. Truman and even made into a play.
posted by Room 641-A at 10:13 PM on November 1, 2013

Remember the Maine, to hell with Spain!
posted by dancestoblue at 11:09 PM on November 1, 2013

"Bombs away with Curt LeMay!" was a satirically critical slogan chanted by protestors at various campaign events mocking the 1968 Vice-Presidential bid of General Curtis LeMay, on the American Independent Party ticket with Presidential nominee George Wallace of Alabama.
posted by paulsc at 11:26 PM on November 1, 2013

Fifty-four forty or fight! Which is confusing for students of history since the war in the slogan never actually happened.
posted by miyabo at 11:33 PM on November 1, 2013

Best answer: Come and Take It -- The citizens of Gonzales, TX
Itself drawing from the Spartans several years previous: Molon Labe
They Shall Not Pass! (in this case, "¡No Pasarán!") was also a rallying cry for the anti-fascists during the Spanish Civil War.
posted by dhens at 11:49 PM on November 1, 2013 [2 favorites]

We have met the enemy and they are ours--Oliver Perry after the Battle of Lake Erie in the War of 1812, which was tweaked by Walt Kelly into "We have met the enemy and they is us" for a Pogo strip on the first Earth DAy.

Ich bin ein Berliner--JFK when the Berlin wall was built (he should of said "Ich bin Berliner"; a Berliner is a jelly donut)
posted by brujita at 12:06 AM on November 2, 2013

"A chicken in every pot." - Herbert Hoover's campaign.
posted by gt2 at 1:00 AM on November 2, 2013

Come and Take It -- The citizens of Gonzales, TX

A little earlier actually.
posted by Dr Dracator at 1:10 AM on November 2, 2013

"Every man a king." - Huey Long

"Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!" - George Wallace
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:15 AM on November 2, 2013

"Charley on the MTA" was originally a campaign song for a Bodton Mayoral candidate.
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:13 AM on November 2, 2013

"I have not yet begun to fight." - John Paul Jones

"We have nothing to fear but fear itself." - FDR

"I am not a crook." - Richard M. Nixon (who was)

"The buck stops here" - Harry S Truman

"I shall return" - Gen. Douglas MacArthur

"Damn the torpedoes. Full speed ahead!" - Adm. David Farragut
posted by wjm at 4:24 AM on November 2, 2013

The Crusades were propelled by slogans like:
God wills it!
God will fill the sails!
There's lots of religious slogans, and they're some of the most effective and most-repeated in the world:

"Islam is the solution" is a current slogan used by an Islamic political movement.
"There is no god but God, and Mohammed is his prophet"
"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee"

Islam expanded amazingly far and amazingly fast shortly after it was founded. There must have been slogans driving it.
posted by Jacob Knitig at 5:14 AM on November 2, 2013

Hey, hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?
Votes for Women!
Just say NO! (CF. This is your brain on drugs)
posted by mibo at 6:22 AM on November 2, 2013

posted by McCoy Pauley at 7:02 AM on November 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

Truman Was Screwy...
This refers to the Truman v. Dewey election, and the renovation/rebuild of the White House during Truman's tenure as President.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:20 AM on November 2, 2013

A few Canadian ones:

1) "Conscription if necessary, but not necessarily conscription." Pertaining to the Conscription Crisis of 1944.

2) "There's no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation." Pertaining to the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 1968-69.

3) "Maîtres chez nous." (Masters of our own house) Pertaining to the Quiet Revolution.

4) "Vive le Quebec Libre." A remark made by French President Charles de Gaulle in a speech in Quebec. Pertaining to the Quebec secesionist movement.

5) "Just watch me." Pertaining to the October Crisis.
posted by obscure simpsons reference at 7:58 AM on November 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

"L'Etat C'est Moi" (I am the state) said by Louis IVX.

And then there's the response to the Barry Goldwater slogan ("In Your Heart You Know He's Right"), "In Your Guts You Know He's Nuts."
posted by brookeb at 8:00 AM on November 2, 2013

"Vote for the Crook. It's important." - 1991 Louisiana Gubernatorial campaign between Edwin Edwards (crook) and David Duke (white supremacist).
posted by CheeseLouise at 8:09 AM on November 2, 2013

"A chicken in every pot" - Henry IV of France (1553 – 1610)

"Paris is well worth a mass" - Henry IV of France (1553 – 1610)
posted by Mister Bijou at 8:54 AM on November 2, 2013

Make love, not war
posted by k8lin at 12:34 PM on November 2, 2013

Best answer: “An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth” is still used today as a rallying cry for retribution, and it remains practically unchanged (in both grammar and meaning) from when it was written into Exodus and Leviticus, probably around 1000 BCE. An earlier form appears in the Code of Hammurabi, which dates to around 1750 BCE.
posted by aw_yiss at 9:00 PM on November 2, 2013 [3 favorites]

"Solidarity Forever"
"Look For The Union Label"
posted by SisterHavana at 11:05 AM on November 3, 2013

If John Lennon 'invented' 'Make Love Not War', he was cribbing thoroughly from the House of Habsburg whose slogan 'Bella gerant alii, tu felix Austria nube' (Others make war, happy Austria, you marry') referred to their successful habit of dynastic marriage. Alas, also to their eventual inbreeding.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 1:40 PM on November 3, 2013

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