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Stay the course

Posted by ESC on April 15, 2004

In Reply to: Stay the course posted by Brian from Shawnee on April 15, 2004

: : Someone commented that the phrase used by President Bush last night ((April 13, 2004) -- stay the course -- had a familiar ring to it. It should:

: : STAY THE COURSE - "Persist in an action or policy; remain with a plan despite criticism or setbacks. This phrase, perhaps based on a sailing metaphor of keeping an unchanged course in navigation, was popularized during the 1980 Presidential campaign.Republicans have helped to popularize the expression. During 1982, according to the Washington Post, Ronald Reagan 'visited 14 states in 10 days of campaigning since Labor Day, carrying his 'stay the course' message." From "Safire's New Political Dictionary" by William Safire (Random House, New York, 1993).

: : And it was a favorite phrase of the elder Bush.

: : SHOW: Today (7:00 AM ET) - NBC. March 31, 2004, Wednesday. Online at Accessed April 14, 2004. Al Franken interview with Katie Couric. She shows a Saturday Night Live clip that was written by Franken:

: : Beginning of clip from "Saturday Night Live")
: : Unidentified Woman: You still have 50 seconds left, Mr. Vice President.
: : Mr. DANA CARVEY: Well, let me just sum up. On track, stay the course, a thousand points of light. Stay the course.
: : Woman: Governor Dukakis, rebuttal?
: : Mr. JON LOVITZ: I can't believe I'm losing to this guy.
: : (End of clip from "Saturday Night Live")

: I've always thought "Stay the Course" was a dumb political slogan. My earliest recollection of it was during the 1976 campaign, I believe. I was just a teenager but I knew it spelled Loser with a Capital L. Naturally it was the Republicans.

Especially dumb if one is running towards a brick wall.