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Figaro rips the innards out of things people say and reveals the rhetorical tricks and pratfalls. For terms and definitions, click here.
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    The Obama campaign unveiled its new one-word slogan with this slick video. Last campaign it was “Change.” Now it’s “Forward.” Pundits noted that “Lean Forward” is the slogan for MSNBC. And Figaro remembers reading the Communist “Daily Forward” back in the early seventies. 

    Still, we like “Forward.” It’s an example, more or less (though mostly less) of deliberative argument, which focuses on the future.  

    We also love William F. Buckley’s definition of a conservative as someone who stands athwart history yelling “Stop.” While Obama supporters yell “Forward,” opponents will be looking at this administration’s policies yelling “Reverse!” 

    But the election will be determined by those whose who haven’t yet shifted from neutral.

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    Reader Comments (5)

    I'm surprised you didn't cover the latest flap over the Obama campaign claiming Romney wouldn't have killed Obama. What kind of rhetoric is that?
    April 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSam Eastman
    Good question, Sam. I didn't cover it because it's rhetorically not that interesting. In my opinion it's a cheap shot that demeans a real accomplishment, and it probably didn't do Obama's re-election attempt any favors. So it's not exactly a device that Figaro would recommend.
    April 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterFigaro
    What would you call the list of accomplishments at the end of the video? And did you find the list effective? Thanks
    April 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSusan
    The list would be covered under "Proof" in a Ciceronian oration, which comes before the "division"--dealing with anticipated objections--and the peroration, or ending. In this case, division and peroration are combined. With no objections!
    April 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterFigaro
    I'll give "Forward" a pass!
    April 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErich Berger

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