Got Six Words to Inspire America?

If Barack Obama‘s inaugural address could be just six words long, how would it read?

Back in February, we ran a contest asking for a new six-word motto for the U.S. (The winner: “Our worst critics prefer to stay.”) We were riffing off of a then-new book, Not Quite What I Was Planning, which contained six-word memoirs by people from all walks of life.

Now the book’s editors and the National Constitution Center are holding a contest to see who can write the most inspiring six-word incantation for the Obama era. Can you beat “Malice toward none, charity for all” or “Nothing to fear but fear itself”? Give a try here.

Entries will be judged by, among others, Stephen Dubner. (He also contributed to the six-word-memoir book. His entry: “On the seventh word, he rested.”) The deadline is January 5, 2009.


How about these possibilities:

"Let's all sing 'Kum Ba Ya.'"

"Watch while I part the Potomac."

"America, your new messiah is here."


"But I wanted a Bud Lite."


At the risk of plagiarism:

"And now for something completely different."


"I really am a foreigner, suckers."


Hope, change, becomes same old politics.

Vinicius Vacanti

Wouldn't it be more appropriate for the limitation to be 140 characters or less?


"I am in over my head."

"Good thing Bill's staff is here."


Can't think of a good Obama one, but here's a classic for Bush.

"Hold my beer and watch this!"


"Let's build a stronger nation together."

"Together we can make America strong."


"The world will keep on turning"

"Tomorrow will be a new day"

"Banal platitude, banal platitude, banal platitude"

But I think the best would be:

"George Bush is no longer president"


hopefully, four years go by quickly.

John Bedard

"Friends, it's your money. Keep it."

Bobby Yates

This is the third Clinton term.

Abel M.

"Hope is here. Action will follow."
"Dispair not, together we will prosper."
"America is strong, we will flourish."


Politics in this country are so petty and pathetic, I almost can't believe it. It's remarkable how infantile people become when they don't get their way. I love the people ripping on the guy before he even starts. Is this how you convince yourself you're doing your part to help this country?


"Can we change? Yes, we can!"


"Praying east five times daily"

"Hold on tight, rough road ahead"

"Hopeful Change and you, coming soon"


Or with todays developments:
"Next up for bids, US Senator"


Back to basics: education, productivity, economy.

Undo last eight years how quickly?

I can't do it without you!


I'll be the opposite of Bush.

Whatever Bush did, I will undo.

Unlike Bush, I won't ruin America.

Wall Street is not my daddy.

Walmart and Exxon aren't my daddies.