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josie's avatar

What the heck do politicians mean when they talk about "going forward" or "going backward".

Asked by josie (28230points) October 5th, 2010

I think they are all assholes, so they can say pretty much what they want to, and in many cases I will judge it as bullshit.
But now that I got that out of the way…
Politicians who generally favor a greater influence of government over people’s lives, whether through more regulation, taxation or both, talk about moving “forward”. They accuse other politicians who accuse the government of being too big or too expensive or both as wanting to go “backward”.
What the hell are they talking about?
If I move in the direction my nose is pointed, I go forward. If I move the other way I go backward.
What is their reference point? What is the forward of which they speak? Backward to where?
More central authority smacks of the age of Kings, which is moving backward in an historical perspective.
People who try to escape tyranny, whether the Pilgrims or prisoners of war, are clearly moving forward.
I do not understand what they mean when they say “We need to move forward”.
I think it is bullshit.
What do think?

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7 Answers

Winters's avatar

Whenever a politician says that his way is the way forward and the other guys’ way is backward, what he’s trying to say is that his way is the way towards a happier and better future for everyone and that his opponent’s way is more likely to result in something that won’t turn out so good for you. From here it’s up to you to decide if his way is actually more beneficial for you in the future.

but yeah, this is probably the most common piece of bullshit politicians pull out of their ass to try and sway the vote to their favor.

YARNLADY's avatar

All sound bites like that are good for the evening news, but when it comes to supporting them, you have to look at their performance on the issues.

ArtsyFartsy23's avatar

First of all, I agree with the bullshit. Second, I believe “going forward” means progressing, whether it be politically, economically, or socially. On the contrary, “going backward” means to digress, like with the Great Depression as an example. Hope this clears things up!

wundayatta's avatar

Either we make progress or we stand still or we lose some of the progress we’ve made.

So enacting health care reform is going forward. When the Republicans take over the House and try to undo health care reform, that will be going backwards.

anartist's avatar

it’s BS but forward seems to be “where you want to go” and backwards seems to be “away from where you want to go”—whatever that may be to you or to the politician.
And by using those vague words, his/her interpretation does not have to agree with yours.

Cruiser's avatar

It’s there way of shifting the blame and the focus to the “other guy” without offering any meaningful explanation of what the hell it is they are talking about. “Voting for HIM will only move us backwards”!! Sounds important enough but what does it really mean?? I turn and walk away from those arguments.

Ron_C's avatar

These days the answer seems pretty simple. Going backwards means voting conservative. They have no answers except to revert to past policies, they didn’t get the message that money doesn’t trickle down, it accumulates at the top, and they say that they want freedom but insist on interfering in your personal life and starting wars in countries that are not a threat.

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