Friday, August 29, 2008

Day 4 - Change and Hope LIVE from The Barackopolis

Four years after his first appearance as the keynote speaker at the 2004 convention, and after three days of the usual politics of shaping opinion and feeding the loyal red meat, the presidential nominee of the Democrat party, Senator Barack Hussein Obama, took to the stage at Invesco Field at Mile High to the cheers of approximately 85,000 fans and supporters. Naturally, as grand speeches are his element, anticipation for the contents of this speech, the beginning of the final march to election day, were understandably high.

In a speech lasting about forty minutes, Obama delivered what was a combination of meat and potatoes liberalism and the soaring rhetoric that he's been know for since that keynote address four years earlier. From stunning visuals (the Barackopolis stage, convetti cannons, fireworks) that just raised the bar above any other acceptance speech (a bar McCain can't and shouldn't reach for) to the powerful delivery he is known for, the speech worked on liberal and moderate alike. From a distance (where most people viewed it), the speech was damned good.

However, there's good style, and there's good substance. And while there were things we could all find agreement in that were included in the speech, and a few good lines, there are things that I heard that cannot let stand. I have a whole page of notes, and I'm going to try to condense that down a little bit more so I can finish this post in a timely manner. For those of you who wondered why it will be a cold day on the asstit of Hell before I vote for Obama, here's why:

These challenges [job loss, housing prices, bills] are not all of government’s making. But the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics in Washington and the failed policies of George W. Bush.

Most of the challenges he listed are very much the government's making. The liberal and big government policies of both parties generally exacerbate the problems, not solve them. And when Washington responds, people suffer.

We are more compassionate than a government that lets veterans sleep on our streets …

Uh, senator, John Edwards was peddling that line. Didn't work for him, because it's not a direct result of our government not "caring" and the solutions are sure as shit not to be found in Washington.

On November 4th, we must stand up and say: Eight is enough.

Good laugh line. I laughed. Including it just for that.

...that old, discredited Republican philosophy: Give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else.

Actually, that's a conservative philosophy that realizes that jobs and growth and incomes come from private businesses that earn it, not receive government "gifts"; government doesn't give anything without taking it from someone else. That's the same old Washington.

Ours is a promise that says government cannot solve all our problems, but what it should do is that which we cannot do for ourselves....

Except that half your list is things we should do ourselves and should never have started doing from Washington: provide every child a decent education; keep our water clean and our toys safe; invest in new schools, and new roads, and science, and technology.

It should ensure opportunity not just for those with the most money and influence, but for every American who’s willing to work.


It does provide that opportunity. You're the fucking proof of that. I don't need to quote you on that, do I?

So let me spell out exactly what that change would mean if I am president.

I'm not going to quote you after that, but it sounds like things Bill Clinton was promising back in 1992 (including that middle class tax cut that disappeared long before 1994). Where's the change? I will give credit to you for including clean coal, natural gas, oil and nuclear development in your energy proposals, assuming you tap them if you are elected.

I’ll make it easier for the American people to afford these new [fuel-efficient] cars.

And you're going to do this while you lower taxes on the poor, middle class, and small business, but not on the Big Automakers that will make these cars (remember the trickle down thing?).

Now, many of these plans will cost money, which is why I’ve laid out how I’ll pay for every dime:

I can't wait to see this balance sheet. Especially since I've heard that line before.

And today, as my call for a timeframe to remove our troops from Iraq has been echoed by the Iraqi government and even the Bush administration,

When you say we should pull out in 16 months year after year, and the day we're going to pull out gets down to 16 months, you'll eventually be right. That reminds me of a broken clock. It's right twice a day.

These are the policies I will pursue. And in the weeks ahead, I look forward to debating them with John McCain.

Sure you do. As much as I dislike McCain, I can't wait until he chews your ass in the teleprompter-free debates.

The men and women who serve in our battlefields ... have not served a red America or a blue America; they have served the United States of America.

Callback from the keynote. Nice touch.

...but don’t tell me we can’t uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals.

Strangely, I've heard that exact idiotic line of argument for gun bans from liberal bloogers that comment here. Criminals use the same handguns used for self-defense.

...if you don’t have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare voters.

When I start to hear the threats of Republicans trying to take away Social Security.... "or a plan that would privatize Social Security and gamble your retirement?" Like you said: Stale scare tactics.

At this moment, in this election, we must pledge once more to march into the future. Let us keep that promise, that American promise, and in the words of scripture hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess.

And with that, came the fireworks and all the things that define you. It's a good line, but it doesn't match a return to the Clinton years, or more likely the Carter years. But after we've heard the less-eloquent blather of John McCain, then it will be a race to November. It will be entertaining, to say the least.

(all quotes are from the raw data post of the speech. Any factual errors will be corrected as I become aware)

Okay, for those of you who watched it, were you wowed, nauseated or both? If you didn't watch it out of disgust, shame on you for missing the fireworks.

6 comments:

Shaw Hussein Kenawe said...

These challenges [job loss, housing prices, bills] are not all of government’s making. But the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics in Washington and the failed policies of George W. Bush.

That is a weird thing to say, since George W. Bush is the head of this government, a government that had SIX years of control in Congress. If politics is broken, then why couldn't the Republican majority in power for six years not fix the problems?

"...not receive government "gifts"; government doesn't give anything without taking it from someone else. That's the same old Washington.

Explain, please, why George Bush's government subsidizes the oil companies, the very companies that have made the largest PROFITS in the history of any corporation on the planet. Why did the Republicans give the oil companies "hand-outs?"

"...have started doing from Washington: provide every child a decent education; keep our water clean and our toys safe; invest in new schools, and new roads, and science, and technology.

Really? We would then have the chronically poor states, like Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, fall even further behind, since it is the northern and coastal blue states that contribute to their small tax base.

The problem with your assessment, Patrick, is that you are stuck in the past, that you are trying to make Obama into a Carter or Clinton.

It ain't gonna work. We've never had anyone like him, and you and others, try as you will, cannot make him into what is old, what is the past.

That describes the Republican Party today, and it's nominee.

I know you have to pick apart Obama's historic speech, that seems to be all that's left for the conservatives to do.

But by the overwhelming majority of those who witnessed this historic event, Sen. Obama (who writes his own copy--unlike McCain) delivered a strong, hard-hitting, specific speech and the 80,000 Americans in the stadium and the millions more at home listened and will make their choice in a few months.

Beth said...

I might have watched if I knew there would be fireworks, darn!

Beth said...

Shaw, most conservatives dislike how the government has grown under Bush, and speaking for myself I do not like corporate welfare either, or anything that impedes free market capitalism. McCain is trying to distance himself from Bush by being against earmarks, but I know that this is small potatoes compared to the huge entitlement costs we face, and neither candidate is addressing these very real problems (as Patrick noted CAUSED by government intervention where it never belonged).

As for comparing Obama to Clinton and Carter, since Obama thinks talking nice to our enemies is going to work (didn't for Carter or Clinton but Obama must think third time's a charm) then people like me have good reason to fear for our safety under an Obama administration.

Patrick M said...

Beth: It was pretty.

Shaw: I knew this was coming, so....

"These challenges..."

That is a weird thing to say...,


I didn't say that, Obama did.

If politics is broken, then why couldn't the Republican majority in power for six years not fix the problems?

Because, the GOP in Congress (led by the likes of McCain) kept compromising and spending money like a chronic masturbator in a sex shop. And Bush forgot the definition of "veto."

Explain, please, why George Bush's government subsidizes the oil companies, [blah, blah, blah]

I think I already answered it. First you tax and regulate companies out the ass. Then, when you cut taxes or transfer that money back, it a "gift". That's Washington shell game politics, which interjects the government in the revenue stream (always bad).

We would then have the chronically poor states, like Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, fall even further behind, since it is the northern and coastal blue states that contribute to their small tax base.

Except you forget: The key to education is not pouring money in, it's in the individual. Obama had the answer: His grandmother dragged his ass out of bed and went over his lessons at 4AM. THAT'S why he learned, THAT'S why he succeeded, and THAT'S why he is one election away from being the next president.

The problem with your assessment, Patrick, is that you are stuck in the past, that you are trying to make Obama into a Carter or Clinton.

I looked at the speech. I took it in whole. The problems and solutions he outlined I have heard before. In 1992. Maybe there's a few things that weren't present in 1992 in the speech, but it's not a whole new direction.

The GOP doesn't necessarily offer a new direction either, but that's next week's dissection.

I know you have to pick apart Obama's historic speech...

If I'm going to figure out his plan for the country, yes, I have to. And McCain gets the treatment next week. And I'll say it again (as I said it on your blog): The speech was not historic. The nomination was, but not the damned speech.

But by the overwhelming majority of those who witnessed this ... event, Sen. Obama (...)delivered a strong, hard-hitting, specific speech and the [estimated 85,000] Americans in the stadium and the millions more at home listened and will make their choice in a few months.

I figured we'd end on a note of agreement, even if I had to edit a little.

Patrick M said...

Beth: (in addition, since your last comment while I was still writing mine) It must be nice to have a candidate that will shape the country the way you want it. In that, Shaw is lucky. We, on the other hand, are hozed.

Toad734 said...

"Most of the challenges he listed are very much the government's making. The liberal and big government policies of both parties generally exacerbate the problems, not solve them. And when Washington responds, people suffer."

Which liberal policies exactly? It's not the liberals who shoot to deregulate everything. Conservative Republicans and American tax payers should have learned their lesson from the S&L scandal. Which is perhaps why you shouldn't vote for one of the Keating 5, John McCain. Some regulation is necessary. Allowing someone to give loans to homeless people is not responsible.

"Government Gifts" You mean like 1.4 billion in subsidies for oil companies and another 2.5 billion in tax breaks?

So you are saying that you don't want the government to pave roads, build schools, make sure toys are safe etc.?? You want the free market to sell us toys that kill your kids and then once your kids die, you will no longer buy toys from that company thus validating the free market philosophy?? IS that what you are saying?

"Willing to work / opportunity":
Yes, without food stamps, school loans, the end of racial discrimination, Obama wouldn't be here today. Also, voting against increasing the minimum wage 7 times like McCain has doesn't ensure opportunity for those willing to work, it actually discourages them from working.

Iraq: How many Americans would be alive today if Iraq used their resources to provide their own security and Americans had begun a pull out 16 months ago?

AK-47s: Huh? So the second amendment does specifically allow criminals access to military weapons?? Where is that written?

Social Security: Really, you want to put your social security retirement money in mortgage securities?? That would have been a great idea. The government would have been bailing out more that Bear Stearns if that would have happened. I see my 401k value decrease every month; I am thrilled my SS isn't in the same place.