Beam me up, Obama!

posted at 10:00 am on August 8, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

All hail the Obama Sign of Progress!  US News reports on the latest for supporters of Barack Obama — a nifty little hand sign that allows his minions to identify each other in crowds.  Apparently, the patchouli aroma wasn’t enough:

George Bush had his three-fingered W salute that supporters flashed when greeting him at presidential campaign events in 2000. And now, if a Los Angeles creative agency gets its way, Sen. Barack Obama will see fans meet him with his own salute like the one above. “Our goal is to see a crowd of 75,000 people at Obama’s nomination speech holding their hands above their heads, fingers laced together in support of a new direction for this country, a renewed hope, and acceptance of responsibility for our future,” says Rick Husong, owner of The Loyalty Inc.

Husong says that he came up with the idea after seeing an Obama-Progress poster, but it looks like he just spent to many nights watching Star Trek reruns.  Take a look at this sequence from “The Way To Eden”:

As a ST-TOS afficianado, I have to say that they chose the absolute worst possible episode to lift.  “The Way to Eden” is usually known as “The Hippie Episode”, in which Spock gets his groove on with aliens lifted directly off the streets of Haight-Ashbury, but only slightly more sober.  It came during the more-or-less disastrous third season and attempted to display a “hipness” and relevance to contemporary times, and wound up embarrassing everyone, even its fans.

Now I can’t wait for the closing night of the Democratic convention at Invesco Field.  The thought of 70,000 fans re-enacting a 40-year-old salute on cue has me already setting up my TiVo.

Others making entries in the tricorder for this story are:

Update (AP): I didn’t get the Trek reference but I did see the resemblance to, er, another image referenced in InstaGlenn’s post, as will thousands of other web surfers who end up stumbling across the graphic. I can’t believe that any Obama supporter with enough Web savvy to try to spread this meme online wouldn’t have seen the backfire potential in designing an image reminiscent of goatse. Which is to say, this has to be a grand prank perpetrated by a McCain fan. I ran a search on Open Secrets for Rick Husong and Loyalty Creative to try to confirm that but came up empty. Anyone want to lend a hand in googling?

Update (Ed): Ugh … I didn’t even think about the goatse implications.  Fortunately, the Boss has a better rendition of the signage, courtesy of one of her commenters:


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“The Wave” is coming.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wave_(book)

hadsil on August 8, 2008 at 10:04 AM

A big fat zero is the perfect symbol. No?

RBMN on August 8, 2008 at 10:07 AM

I refuse to google anything related to goatse.

ballz2wallz on August 8, 2008 at 10:07 AM

Once more shows how scary the Cult of the O is. They’re becoming a religion (if they haven’t already).

And you’re right, Ed, probably one of the worst ST:TOS episodes eva. But still, bad TOS is still better than good Voyager.

crazy_legs on August 8, 2008 at 10:09 AM

It looks kinda obscene.

obladioblada on August 8, 2008 at 10:09 AM

They stole it from Encyclopedia Dramatica (WARNING! — DON”T GO THERE!)

Tinian on August 8, 2008 at 10:11 AM

It looks kinda obscene.

obladioblada on August 8, 2008 at 10:09 AM

The two hands? Well, he is black after all…. :)

RBMN on August 8, 2008 at 10:12 AM

“Step’in in to Eden, Yea Brother”

“Herbert, Herbert, Herbert”.

PappaMac on August 8, 2008 at 10:12 AM

Our goal is to see a crowd of 75,000 people at Obama’s nomination speech holding their hands above their heads

Then they do the hokey-pokey, and that’s what it’s all about

mymanpotsandpans on August 8, 2008 at 10:13 AM

I am hereby christening the Presidential campaign of 2008 as the “Trivialist Maxumus” campaign.

So let it be written.

MB4 on August 8, 2008 at 10:13 AM

It’s all about the “O”.

roux on August 8, 2008 at 10:14 AM

imported from Headlines

[C]an we really have gone this deep into the comments without someone picking up on the uncanny similarity between the two cult leaders in the general region of the ears?

Captain Scarlet on August 8, 2008 at 10:13 AM

Captain Scarlet on August 8, 2008 at 10:17 AM

You guys google and I’ll go to 4chan and photoshop that onto goatse and start a forced meme although I’ll bet someone has beaten me to it.

manfriend on August 8, 2008 at 10:18 AM

Perfect! O and 0 are interchangeable!

sabbott on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

Once more shows how scary the Cult of the O is. They’re becoming a religion (if they haven’t already).

Sorry but I think Oprah already has the rights to being called “Cult of the O” and she is most definitely a religon unto herself (catering to the brain-dead pop culture/ psycho-babble daytime TV watching crowd).

highhopes on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

Yup, that’s what the Obamamaniacs needed most: a gang sign.

Tantor on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

So I am guessing that laughter at how foolish these people are will soon be considered racist also?

bbz123 on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

The USN&WR blog moderator has now deleted my blog comments twice! Geez, all I wanted to know is if they were going to hand out armbands, too, at the convention. Touchy!

ConMom on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

I know it’s a co-inky-dink, but anyone else notice that the “messiah’s” new “sign” is the “way to eden”?

PappaMac on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

goatse

lulz

pseudonominus on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

This just begs for parodies.

mikeyboss on August 8, 2008 at 10:21 AM

I’m right there with you on the goatse reference AP. First thing I thought of when I saw this was does it stand for Obama or a giant ***hole? Perhaps both at the same time?

bj1126 on August 8, 2008 at 10:22 AM

Now thats digusting,it reminds me of
Everyone loves Raymond,when his mother
made the sculpture,and the two nuns
were shocked!

Ya know,if your standing a ways back from
a beaver dam,and you made that hand signal,
and you look through it,I have no doubt that
you would see a Canadian beaver,or maybe a
muscrat in its natural habitant,a hum!haha:)

canopfor on August 8, 2008 at 10:23 AM

It’s amazing how dumb these Obama worshippers are.A lame ST episode AND a goatse reference, all in the same mindless hand gesture? Un-freakin-believable.

Badger in KC on August 8, 2008 at 10:24 AM

I first thought of a giant goose egg when I saw the logo.

multiuseless on August 8, 2008 at 10:25 AM

Karl Rove, you magnificent BASTARD, you’ve done it again!
Is there no end to his creativity and sleuthfulness?
Come and learn at the feet of the master.
And now we hear that The Obama is insisting that there be an open air acceptance of the nomination. Probably better that way to hear The Voice and see The Dove descending.
Uh, it will be The Obama who accepts the nomination, won’t it?

Amendment X on August 8, 2008 at 10:27 AM

Anyone want to lend a hand in googling?

Um, “so to speak.”

Is that illegal in two-thirds of the U.S.? Isn’t that what this hand gesture is all about to begin with?

Captain Scarlet on August 8, 2008 at 10:27 AM

Just call me Herbert.

fluffy on August 8, 2008 at 10:27 AM

If you look at it the right was, the arms and hands make the letter ‘A’ while the cupped hands make an hole.
Hmm. A and hole.
I’ve got nothing.

carbon_footprint on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

When I was a kid we used to make a smaller version of the “o” sign using thumb and fore finger. It meant “you’re an a__hole.”

sdd on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

If you look at it the right was way, the arms and hands make the letter ‘A’ while the cupped hands make an hole.
Hmm. A and hole.
I’ve got nothing.

carbon_footprint on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

carbon_footprint on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

That is the symbol,of the great gapeing
blackhole were nothing,even political
light can’t escape!

And thats were the Liberal Obamaiacs are,
forever lost in a gapeing abyss of Hope and
Change in the political universe! haha:)

canopfor on August 8, 2008 at 10:29 AM

Notice how they have to qualify this by starting with President Bush? Does anyone here even remember the 3 finger salute? What a joke — as if the messianic craze is similar.

Richard Romano on August 8, 2008 at 10:29 AM

And you’re right, Ed, probably one of the worst ST:TOS episodes eva. But still, bad TOS is still better than good Voyager.

crazy_legs on August 8, 2008 at 10:09 AM

Yah, but crazy_legs, ST-TOS doesn’t have 7 of 9.
Any questions now that I’ve betrayed my utter maleness to the world?

Amendment X on August 8, 2008 at 10:30 AM

There is a lesson and a warning in the Star Trek Eden episode. The lesson is that there is no Utopia in this world and the pursuit of the dream leads to death.

Beyond the lesson I am now very excited about the upcoming Leni Reifenstahl moment in Denver. I might even watch it.

Mussolini still has the coolest (Roman) salute.

jerryofva on August 8, 2008 at 10:31 AM

AP mentioned the backfire potential of the new symbol. One minute or so into this video shows the backfire potential with regards to the 2012 Olympic symbol. It’s safe for work and I laughed.

Canadian Infidel on August 8, 2008 at 10:14 AM

It’s been a while since I saw that. Funny stuff.

Tinian on August 8, 2008 at 10:32 AM

I would suggest that using the bad hippie episode of TOS was exactly correct in this context.

Karl on August 8, 2008 at 10:33 AM

I can’t believe that any Obama supporter with enough Web savvy to try to spread this meme online wouldn’t have seen the backfire potential in designing an image reminiscent of goatse. Which is to say, this has to be a grand prank perpetrated by a McCain fan.

You might be right, Ed. But I must say, when I first saw the Official Obama Ogo, the first thing I thought of was a goatse photoshop. I decided to suppress that filthy impulse, and furthermore decided never to mention it at HA. But every time I see that logo, I swear, I have to suppress that nasty little mental image.

RushBaby on August 8, 2008 at 10:35 AM

They stole it from Encyclopedia Dramatica (WARNING! — DON”T GO THERE!)

Tinian on August 8, 2008 at 10:11 AM

NSFW, or anywhere else.

Notice how they have to qualify this by starting with President Bush? Does anyone here even remember the 3 finger salute? What a joke — as if the messianic craze is similar.

Richard Romano on August 8, 2008 at 10:29 AM

So the ObamaNation wants to run a Bush-like campaign?

BohicaTwentyTwo on August 8, 2008 at 10:36 AM

The design of that poster also has that communist agitprop feel of Obama’s German poster.

obladioblada on August 8, 2008 at 10:37 AM

I agree that the hippie episode was bad, but the worst? I disagree. “Spock’s Brain” was hands down, the worst ST-TOS episode evah.

john1schn on August 8, 2008 at 10:37 AM

That’s the intro to White Zombie’s song Starface.

thebrokenchair on August 8, 2008 at 10:37 AM

Oh foregive me,me thinks that maybe its
a hand signal for Leftys as opposed to
foot tapping when you need to use the
facilities!(Snark!)haha

canopfor on August 8, 2008 at 10:38 AM

Sign Of Progress? Idol worship and a Cult following? Yeah I am going to take the road less traveled thank you. Conformity that is what the Progressives are selling “do you want to belong to something bigger then yourself” My Answer: No I’m Good, thanks anyway.

Dr Evil on August 8, 2008 at 10:39 AM

Maybe these guys should just form their own cult group.

They could call it the “Holy Order of Barack Obama”.

H.O.B.O.

Hey! That’s catchy!

pilamaye on August 8, 2008 at 10:42 AM

If you start seeing,armbands with a big O,
then me thinks it might be a cause for some
concern!haha.

canopfor on August 8, 2008 at 10:42 AM

Hmmm…. first Obama hashes his Present and future tenses in his now infamous “future” comment…

Now, we see the start of a messianic movement to “Eden”, sign and all, from a prophetic Star Trek episode…

Anyone see the Doctor running around?

/puts on his tinfoil hat…

Romeo13 on August 8, 2008 at 10:44 AM

I think a better Star Trek reference for these dimwits is the cult of Landru:

“There was war… convulsions… the world was destroying itself. Landru saw the truth; he changed the world.”

– Reger

Landru was first a man, and then a machine.

Once absorbed, a living being’s individuality and free will were largely subordinated to the instructions and ideas supplied telepathically by Landru.

Here is the link: http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/Landru

The more I see of this “cult”, the more ammo I purchase.

djtnt on August 8, 2008 at 10:45 AM

When I read this earlier this morning I just couldn’t have been happier for the future visual to come. Now I think Ed may be right and it is a joke. But if is true I think it will go the way of the “Seal” pdq. because someone has to realize that it is so stupid.

Cindy Munford on August 8, 2008 at 10:46 AM

They may have stolen it from Star Trek but Star Trek stole it from the Jewish priestly blessing (which is quite ancient).

Carl in Jerusalem on August 8, 2008 at 10:47 AM

As a ST-TOS afficianado, I have to say that they chose the absolute worst possible episode to lift.

Oh, no, Ed. This one’s pretty bad, but it’s easily surpassed by “Spock’s Brain” (season 3) and “The Apple” (season 2). And while season three was pretty bad, it did have a couple of great episodes, such as “The Tholian Web.”

Harry Mudd lives!

irishspy on August 8, 2008 at 10:47 AM

If you look at it the right way, the arms and hands make the letter ‘A’ while the cupped hands make an hole.
Hmm. A and hole.
I’ve got nothing.

carbon_footprint on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

.
A-HAHAHA!

Think_b4_speaking on August 8, 2008 at 10:52 AM

And you’re right, Ed, probably one of the worst ST:TOS episodes eva. But still, bad TOS is still better than good Voyager.

Wow, Voyager’s my favorite of the Star Trek series (although, I love and own them all). It has many good episodes, a solid cast, and embraces the Trek formula greatly. TOS is my 2nd favorite, though.

American_Pride1701 on August 8, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Maybe Republicans could adopt the Monty Python, one handed ‘O’ with a space between the index and thumb, overlaying a lib from a distance, their little heads centered between index and thumb saying, squish, squish.

captivated_dem on August 8, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Oh God, please let them do it at his acceptance speech. It would give the GOP material for the ultimate anti-dem ads. Start with a shot of the Uuuuuuhbamabots giving their little salute, then cut to a shot from any Nazi rally. Then you show Uuuuuuhbama expounding on his civilian defense force, followed by scenes of Nazi Brownshirts in action.

But would the Republicans have the guts to do it?

thekingtut on August 8, 2008 at 10:55 AM

Let’s try and start a movement where even while walking down the street, people would hold up the O and you would know that they were for Obama,’ ” says Husong.

Furthering the proctological angle.

mikeyboss on August 8, 2008 at 10:55 AM

Compare that picture to the salute the workers are making during the “two minute hate” scene in 1984. These people keep out-creeping themselves.

Nosferightu on August 8, 2008 at 11:00 AM

The new obama sign reminds me of the “Ill be seeing you” sign used by Patrick Mcgoohan in The Prisoner.

I suspect we’ll all be numbers in the Village under an Obama administration.

evilned on August 8, 2008 at 11:02 AM

Had it first!

baldilocks on August 8, 2008 at 11:04 AM

carbon_footprint on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

Simply awesome!

Torch on August 8, 2008 at 11:06 AM

They may have stolen it from Star Trek but Star Trek stole it from the Jewish priestly blessing (which is quite ancient).

Carl in Jerusalem on August 8, 2008 at 10:47 AM

OHHHH… NOOOO… Star Trek is an evil Zionist conspiricy?

who woulda thunk it….

Romeo13 on August 8, 2008 at 11:06 AM

OMG, I did not know what goatse was. Thanks a pantload, Ed. ;-)

BTW, in retrospect, it could still be befitting of The Chosen One – “Staring into the abyss.” LOL

MsUnderestimated on August 8, 2008 at 11:09 AM

Now, just superimpose those hands onto the towers behind Obama during his speech in Germany …

exhelodrvr on August 8, 2008 at 11:10 AM

Ok gurus. Look on a new computer (I have HP Pavillion with vista home premium),frankly a step down from my xp pro, but one of their features is HP Total Care Advisor with basically the same symbol, two hands forming an O. I would think HP or whoever has a copyright infringement case for these dopes. Check it out.

wepeople on August 8, 2008 at 11:11 AM

“We turn our backs on confusion”

That is why Barry will lose.

TroubledMonkey on August 8, 2008 at 11:11 AM

ConMom on August 8, 2008 at 10:20 AM

I didn’t see mine from around 7:30 a.m. either, so maybe we are doing it wrong.

Cindy Munford on August 8, 2008 at 11:12 AM

The two hands? Well, he is black after all…. :)

RBMN on August 8, 2008 at 10:12 AM

no, you didn’t! LOL!

homesickamerican on August 8, 2008 at 11:14 AM

hekingtut on August 8, 2008 at 10:55 AM

I don’t think any Nazi involvement is necessary. Masses of people doing this will stand all on it’s own.

Cindy Munford on August 8, 2008 at 11:15 AM

carbon_footprint on August 8, 2008 at 10:28 AM

hmmm. nope, I got nothing as well..

DaveC on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Do Chicago street gangs have hand signs?

DaveC on August 8, 2008 at 11:17 AM

First was the whole “Lightworker” meme, which was clearly taken whole-hog from the UFO contactee cults of the Fifties.

Then was the demand for a “civilian national defense corps as large and well-funded as the U.S. military”, which immediately brought the Sturmabteilung and Schutzstaffel to mind, especially for anyone my age (50) or older.

Then the pseudo-Presidential seal with simultaneous “Why should I salute the flag of a country (the U.S.A.) my wife doesn’t like?” business.

Then the German trip, with Obama riding the coattails of rock bands and free goodies to a gigantic rally in front of a symbol of militarism dating back over a century.

And now this.

With this many blunders making news every cycle in spite of the MSM’s valiantly futile efforts to downplay them, there are only three logical possibilities, as Spock would say;

1. The Obama campaign is totally penetrated by operatives working for someone else (probably Hillary):

2. The Obama campaign is run by ideologues out of the Democratic far left who have lived in their own little echo chamber since Woodstock; or

3. Obama picked his campaign staff on the basis of having no one on it who might conceivably outshine him in any way, never realizing that in doing so he was ensuring that everyone on same would be of significantly below-average practical intelligence and problem-solving capability, while simultaneously sharing his utter and complete contempt for the intelligence of the “bitter” people in Flyover Country.

Whatever the reason, I conclude that in functional terms, we may be looking at the most profoundly dysfunctional, in fact brainless, Presidential campaign in U.S. history.

The frightening part is, it is still entirely possible that these idiots may yet win the election. And go on to be the staff of the new Obama Administration.

Which in itself, would be as nerve-wracking for most rational people as having The Anointed One in the center seat.

If so, we can only hope that it is only a four-year mission.

clear ether

eon

eon on August 8, 2008 at 11:19 AM

Well, Loyalty Creative seems to be quite real. I don’t recognize most of their clients, but enough of them are clearly real and feature the Loyalty imagery on their sites that we know it’s an actual company. As for whether the people at Loyalty are in fact conservatives out to prank Obama’s supporters, I couldn’t determine that. I do find it extraordinarily hard to believe, though, that a high-end advertising agency missed all the negative connotations of their creation.

aero on August 8, 2008 at 11:19 AM

so is the symbol representing a circle jerk? I don’t get it.

lorien1973 on August 8, 2008 at 11:25 AM

Oh yeah. who is doin the official goatse photoshop?

lorien1973 on August 8, 2008 at 11:27 AM

Zero Tolerance!

Al-Ozarka on August 8, 2008 at 11:32 AM

OH-BEE
OH-BEE
ÜBER ALLES…

at least we know that TOMORROW BELONGS TO THEM! /sarc :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdM8PDu6VMg

oh, pleeeeeeeeaaaassssssssseeeee….

Lockstein13 on August 8, 2008 at 11:33 AM

The problem is it’s way too much work. You have to lift up both your arms — McCain couldn’t make the sign of the “O” even if he wanted to. Then both your hands are occupied. You can’t multitask while making the O. And pressing your hands together in any way, isn’t that a bit like praying? I’m not praying to Obama, or invoking his name in a prayerful way. For me this gesture is 0 for 3.

Paul-Cincy on August 8, 2008 at 11:35 AM

This is who is following Obama. From Orwell to Rand, we have been warned repeatedly about these folks “pagans”

http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0452011841/ref=sib_dp_pt/002-8346884-0670439#reader-link

Dr Evil on August 8, 2008 at 11:36 AM

Daft, I call it.

OldEnglish on August 8, 2008 at 11:36 AM

wepeople on August 8, 2008 at 11:11 AM

It does look like the HP logo, and may I say how much I hate that logo? In HP’s case it’s supposed to be the hands of a magician, which is also fitting for Barry.

Buy Danish on August 8, 2008 at 11:37 AM

Test

Jay on August 8, 2008 at 11:39 AM

It’s all about the O.

My collie says:

I’ll agree that the nothingness is overstocked.

CyberCipher on August 8, 2008 at 11:39 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Obedience?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:45 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Ostentatious?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:46 AM

It should be a one-handed “O”. The universal symbol for j**king off. Exactly perfect for Saint Truthy Changiness.

Cicero43 on August 8, 2008 at 11:47 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Obsequious?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:47 AM

I loved that episode! Sure, it’s easy to look back from today’s perspective and find the ‘hippie’ episode silly, but go back 40 years and think about it’s affect: It was a big hit in the 6th grade. Many of us, at least the boys, spent our summer days riding our bikes through the panhandle(hippie central) and the haight. We caught the allusion and thought it was groovy that such an a connection could be made on a tv show.BEST EPISODE EVER: ‘Mudd’s Women’, of course!

oldvannes on August 8, 2008 at 11:48 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Oily?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:48 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Obstinant?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:48 AM

“Gonna crack my knuckles, gonna jump for joy.
I got a clean bill of health from
Dr. McCoy!!”

“His name was Adam.”

Anyway, the worst episode is “Omega Glory”. Hands down. But like the other poster said, “Spock’s Brain” is a real stinker too.

Obama’s favorite character in ST-TOS: Dr. M’benga. Right?

Andy in Agoura Hills on August 8, 2008 at 11:49 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Onerous?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:49 AM

This is who is following Obama. From Orwell to Rand, we have been warned repeatedly about these folks “pagans”

http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0452011841/ref=sib_dp_pt/002-8346884-0670439#reader-link

Dr Evil on August 8, 2008 at 11:36 AM

Thanks. I’ll be reading that!

RushBaby on August 8, 2008 at 11:50 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Odoriferous?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:50 AM

I just give them the “O” face.

Hening on August 8, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Obstructive?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on August 8, 2008 at 11:51 AM

The US News article has been deleting comments. Earlier this morning mine was there; an hour later it wasnt’. Then there were six, then there were two, now there are 38…and mine is still missing.

Unbelievable…or maybe not.

Grantman on August 8, 2008 at 12:01 PM

flashing official obama gang signs…what will he think of next to completely destroy his candidacy?

DrW on August 8, 2008 at 12:03 PM

Comment pages: 1 2