A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

Recent entries:
“Soup of the Day: Whiskey” (3/27)
“Put some whiskey in my coffee because it’s Ireland somewhere” (3/27)
“Whiskey is what beer wants to be when it grows up” (3/27)
“I don’t have enough coffee or middle fingers for today” (3/26)
“I like coffee because it gives me the illusion that I might be awake” (3/26)
More new entries...

A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z


Entry from April 22, 2011
“It’s the economy, stupid”

’It’s the economy, stupid” was coined by James Carville, then working as a political consultant on the successful 1992 presidential campaign of Bill Clinton. Carville wrote on a sign posted near his desk:

Change vs. more of the same
The economy, stupid
Don’t forget health care


“The economy, stupid” was cited in the Washington (DC) Post on August 3, 1992. “It’s the economy, stupid” was cited in print by at least August 17, 1992.

“It’s the economy, stupid” is still known in politics, used with other “It’s the ___, stupid” constructions. An earlier and somewhat similar “stupid” phrase is “Keep It Simple, Stupid” (K.I.S.S.).


Wikipedia: It’s the economy, stupid
“It’s the economy, stupid” was a phrase in American politics widely used during Bill Clinton’s successful 1992 presidential campaign against George H. W. Bush. For a time, Bush was considered unbeatable because of foreign policy developments such as the end of the Cold War and the Persian Gulf War. The phrase, made popular by Clinton campaign strategist James Carville, refers to the notion that Clinton was a better choice because Bush had not adequately addressed the economy, which had recently undergone a recession.

History
In order to keep the campaign on message, Carville hung a sign in Bill Clinton’s Little Rock campaign headquarters that read:

1.Change vs. more of the same
2.The economy, stupid
3.Don’t forget health care.

Although the sign was intended for an internal audience of campaign workers, the phrase became something of a slogan for the Clinton election campaign. Clinton’s campaign used the recession to successfully unseat George H.W. Bush. In March 1991, days after the ground invasion of Iraq, 90% of polled Americans approved of President Bush’s job performance. Later the next year, Americans’ opinions had turned sharply; 64% of polled Americans disapproved of Bush’s job performance in August 1992.

Legacy
The phrase has become a snowclone repeated often in American political culture, usually starting with the word “it’s” and with commentators sometimes using a different word in place of “economy.” Examples include “It’s the deficit, stupid!” “It’s the corporation, stupid!” “It’s the math, stupid!” and “It’s the voters, stupid!”.

Wikipedia: James Carville
Chester James Carville, Jr. (born October 25, 1944) is an American political consultant, commentator, educator, actor, attorney, media personality, and prominent liberal pundit. Carville gained national attention for his work as the lead strategist of the successful presidential campaign of then-Arkansas governor Bill Clinton.
(...)
Bill Clinton’s 1992 Presidential campaign
In 1992, Carville helped lead Bill Clinton to a win against George H. W. Bush in the Presidential election.[citation needed] In 1993, Carville was honored as Campaign Manager of the Year by the American Association of Political Consultants. His role in the Clinton campaign was documented in the feature-length Academy Award-nominated film, The War Room. One of the formulations he used in that campaign has entered common usage, derived from a list he posted in the war room to help focus himself and his staff, with these three points:

1.Change vs. more of the same.
2.The economy, stupid.
3.Don’t forget health care.

3 August 1992, Washington (DC) Post, “ A Paper’s Political Afterlife; Ex-Arkansas Gazette Houses Clinton’s HQ” by David Maraniss, pg. A8:
In Carville’s blunt language, it is “The economy. stupid.”

17 August 1992, News-Tribune (Tacoma-Seattle, WA), “Bush in the starting blocks,”
A hand-lettered sign in the staff office of Democratic nominee Bill Clinton drives home that point to workers by proclaiming, “It’s the economy stupid.”

New York (NY) Times
THE 1992 CAMPAIGN: Political Week; ‘Did Not!’ and ‘Did So!’ Frame the Tax Debate
By MICHAEL KELLY
Published: September 01, 1992
(...)
In the room at the Clinton campaign headquarters where James Carville, the chief strategist, spins and weaves, a sign on the wall reminds everyone: “The economy, stupid.” The obvious point of the sign—that for Mr. Clinton to win this race the subject must remain President Bush’s handling of the economy—tends to mask another point. The language of the sign consciously echoes a sign seen above the desks of office wits everywhere: “Keep it simple, stupid.” A reasoned, nuanced debate on the nation’s economic health is not likely to serve Mr. Clinton as well as a simple message: this country is in terrible economic shape and it is George Bush’s fault.

OCLC WorldCat record
“It’s The Information, Stupid!” A Simple and Cost Effective Executive Information System
Author: W S Papy; R Hoag
Edition/Format:  Article
Publication: CMG -CONFERENCE- (1993): 372
Database: British Library Serials

OCLC WorldCat record
It’s the medicine, stupid.
Author: L Reisman
Edition/Format:  Article : English
Publication: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1994 Nov 4; 729: 186-7
Database: From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

OCLC WorldCat record
It’s the patient, stupid!
Author: JS Sergent
Edition/Format:  Article : English
Publication: Arthritis and rheumatism, 1994 Apr; 37(4): 449-53
Database: From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

OCLC WorldCat record
It’s the Budget, Stupid: A Policy Analysis of Clinton’s First Budget
Author: J M Fendrich; J Miller; T Nickel
Publisher: West Hartford, Conn. : Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare, Inc., University of Connecticut School of Social Work,
Edition/Format:  Article : English
Publication: Journal of sociology and social welfare. 21, no. 4, (1994): 5
Database: ArticleFirst

Google Books
All’s Fair:
Love, War, and Running for President

By Mary Matalin and James Carville with Peter Knobler
New York, NY: Random House
1995
Pg. 244:
I wrote:

Change vs. more of the same
The economy, stupid
Don’t forget health care


I hung it on a post near my desk. It was not any big deal, just a reminder of what we were about. It had two essential elements: It was simple and it was self-effacing. I was trying to say, “Let’s don’t be too clever here, don’t come down here thinking we’re too smart. Let’s just remember the basics.”

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Friday, April 22, 2011 • Permalink