Obama’s Speech

I am watching it live. Seems to be, well, reasonable and well thought out and works for me. This portion seems to me to be refreshingly candid and long overdue:

In fact, a similar anger exists within segments of the white community. Most working- and middle-class white Americans don’t feel that they have been particularly privileged by their race. Their experience is the immigrant experience – as far as they’re concerned, no one’s handed them anything, they’ve built it from scratch. They’ve worked hard all their lives, many times only to see their jobs shipped overseas or their pension dumped after a lifetime of labor. They are anxious about their futures, and feel their dreams slipping away; in an era of stagnant wages and global competition, opportunity comes to be seen as a zero sum game, in which your dreams come at my expense. So when they are told to bus their children to a school across town; when they hear that an African American is getting an advantage in landing a good job or a spot in a good college because of an injustice that they themselves never committed; when they’re told that their fears about crime in urban neighborhoods are somehow prejudiced, resentment builds over time.

Like the anger within the black community, these resentments aren’t always expressed in polite company. But they have helped shape the political landscape for at least a generation. Anger over welfare and affirmative action helped forge the Reagan Coalition. Politicians routinely exploited fears of crime for their own electoral ends. Talk show hosts and conservative commentators built entire careers unmasking bogus claims of racism while dismissing legitimate discussions of racial injustice and inequality as mere political correctness or reverse racism.

Just as black anger often proved counterproductive, so have these white resentments distracted attention from the real culprits of the middle class squeeze – a corporate culture rife with inside dealing, questionable accounting practices, and short-term greed; a Washington dominated by lobbyists and special interests; economic policies that favor the few over the many. And yet, to wish away the resentments of white Americans, to label them as misguided or even racist, without recognizing they are grounded in legitimate concerns – this too widens the racial divide, and blocks the path to understanding.

It really is quite magnificent, and the fact that Obama is sincere, and means it and is clearly not just reading from a teleprompter makes it even better.

I also really respect the fact that he didn’t just throw Rev. Wright underneath the bus.

*** Update ***

Youtube FTMFW:






225 replies
  1. 1
    Christian Prophet says:

    Obama wants it both ways. He asks America to rise above race and religion, while hoping to appear religious himself. But he is in deep trouble if a spotlight is shined on his own THEOLOGY. See.

  2. 2
    Neal says:

    I couldn’t watch it since I’m at work but I read the full transcript on Drudge as soon as it came up. Dear god. Amazing.
    I was really anxious to see what he would say. I was a bit worried.
    I don’t think it could’ve been better.
    Wow.

  3. 3

    Sounds like he threaded the needle, unlike the lame Romney speech.

  4. 4
    Mary says:

    I haven’t watched it — I’ve see comments elsewhere that he seemed tired and off and I can’t stand the dread — but I read the transcript and thought he covered everything sharply and honestly, with the Ashley closer making me cry.

    But how well will this work in soundbite culture?

  5. 5
    schooner says:

    Could McCain, Clinton, Bush or anyone else on the scene even come close to this eloquent description of what life is really like in America ?

  6. 6
    Jake says:

    And this is where he starts to really scare the crap out of people who need the crap beat out of them. I bet this gets little to no mention in the press. Sorry, no time. Too busy covering Rev. Wright!

  7. 7
    The Other Steve says:

    Obama wants it both ways. He asks America to rise above race and religion, while hoping to appear religious himself. But he is in deep trouble if a spotlight is shined on his own THEOLOGY. See.

    And Mickey Mouse is gay!

  8. 8
    Ezert says:

    Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem like it’s going to do the trick. Oh well.

    In other news, Hey John, got any plans this weekend?

    http://pittsburgh.craigslist.o.....70979.html

  9. 9
    Zifnab says:

    Hehe. Compare and Contrast.
    The Mittens Romney Mormon Speach vs the Barack Obama Race and Politics in America Speach.

    I have only one thing to say: Kennedy-esque!

  10. 10

    Brilliant speech; a win would have been simply negating the kerfuffle over the Wright comments, but this recontextualized them and practically said “hey, it’s okay for white people to get antsy about affirmative action, we understand, but come on, the real problem is…” and adeptly went on the attack against real, serious targets.

    The wider this speech goes, the better it is for him.

  11. 11
    The Other Steve says:

    Could McCain, Clinton, Bush or anyone else on the scene even come close to this eloquent description of what life is really like in America ?

    Eloquent?

    Surely you jest.

  12. 12
    4tehlulz says:

    Why is Obama continually playing the race card by talking about angry white people?

  13. 13
    Louise says:

    A wonderful speech. He was low-key, and I thought that worked well for what he was saying. Way too intelligent to be accurately reported by our media. I’m old enough for everything to resonate and he spoke truth throughout.

    However, the speech had few sound bites, and therefore will be incomprehensible to the pundits and those who let someone else tell them what to think. He already had my vote, but now I’m going to be even more depressed when our stupid, stupid populace fails to elect him.

  14. 14
    myiq2xu says:

    Eloquent?

    Surely you jest.

    This is the first time I watched a whole Obama speech.

    Underwhelming.

  15. 15
    myiq2xu says:

    “We can pounce on some gaffe by a Hillary supporter as evidence that she’s playing the race card.”

    This appears to be a policy statement.

  16. 16
    Zifnab says:

    This is the first time I watched a whole Obama speech had sex with your mother last night.

    Underwhelming.

    I find that incredibly racist and demand an apology.

  17. 17
    srv says:

    Long overdue? For all you who rave about his speeches, you haven’t been listening. Obama has been using the “we have all suffered” meme since his convention speech in 2004 (pdf). There’s nothing new about this, other than it being referred to as a speech about race.

    a Washington dominated by lobbyists and special interests; economic policies that favor the few over the many.

    Heh. Chicago isn’t so far from Washington as y’all would like to believe. When Citi explodes in the next few months, I’m sure the his only economics advisor who’s worked outside of a classroom, Michael Froman (on leave from Citi), will have the squeeze for him.

  18. 18
    Ed Drone says:

    I like how he points out the problem with Wright’s speeches — that they presuppose an unchanging America, with racism and repression and division as part of the national DNA. Obama’s solution is in effect the application of some stem cells to undo that DNA, and attempt to repair the rift in our society.

    The speech is masterful, thoughtful, and needed. I worried when they said he was going to do this speech, but damn, it needed saying, and he said it right.

    Of course, the talking heads won’t like it, and, because it’s masterful and thoughtful, it won’t be read or fully listened to by very many people, but those people wouldn’t listen to Christ if he returned and said something that went against their biases anyway.

    I am even prouder than ever of this country and this man, and I want him to be our president.

    Now, watch McPain and the Right-Whingers try to poke holes in it — “He didn’t condemn his pastor ENOUGH” or “But he STAYED in the church,” or “He forgot to say ‘mother, may I?'”

    The Republicans we can expect — count on — to say things like that, but damn the Democrat who does. This is not the subject to nit-pick, not the speech to condemn, not the time to divide the party.

    Ed

  19. 19
    Jen says:

    Good grief, I teared up reading the transcript. It’s a good thing I can’t watch it or I’d be looking pretty pitiful.

    I am going to get back into mode by picturing Bush trying to give this speech.

    That’s better.

  20. 20
    Fe E says:

    Wow, I’m bummed I could’nt see it live. I wholeheartedly agree with all of what you have excerpted, but I have been waiting DECADES to hear this part especially:

    Just as black anger often proved counterproductive, so have these white resentments distracted attention from the real culprits of the middle class squeeze – a corporate culture rife with inside dealing, questionable accounting practices, and short-term greed; a Washington dominated by lobbyists and special interests; economic policies that favor the few over the many. And yet, to wish away the resentments of white Americans, to label them as misguided or even racist, without recognizing they are grounded in legitimate concerns – this too widens the racial divide,

    It’ll be “interesting” to see how this plays with the chatterers.

  21. 21
    Neal says:

    This is the first time I watched a whole Obama speech.

    Underwhelming.

    So Clinton’s shrill is better?

  22. 22
    myiq2xu says:

    with the Ashley closer making me cry.

    I was surprised. That was his big finish?

  23. 23
    catatonia says:

    BHO quoted Faulkner and even though it’s the stock Faulkner quote about the past not even being the past (I might have preferred Addie Bundren from “As I Lay Dying” — “And when I had Cash, I knew that living was terrible”), that’s a hell of a long way from Louis L’Amore and Bush’s “I read (sic) three Shakespeares.”

  24. 24
    myiq2xu says:

    I see the GOS memo has been widely distributed.

  25. 25
    4tehlulz says:

    It’ll be “interesting” to see how this plays with the chatterers.

    They’ll ignore it and talk about how he refused to throw Scary Black Man(R) under the bus.

  26. 26
    Jen says:

    I was surprised. That was his big finish?

    I wanted him to go with “Black is the new president, bitch”, but, in retrospect, his is probably better, given the tenor of the speech.

  27. 27
    AkaDad says:

    This is one of the times I agree with Pat Buchanan. This will play well in white America.

  28. 28
    Mr Furious says:

    If that guy’s not ready to lead a nation, no one is.

    His tone/delivery was dialed down a bit, and I’m more used to seeing him speak from the center of a crowd rather than on a stage of flags, but the words were powerful, and should speak to everyone but those that will always remain beyond his appeal.

    Get with it America. Our new President is ready. Are we?

  29. 29
    Jen says:

    This is one of the times I agree with Pat Buchanan. This will play well in white America.

    I heard Pat Buchanan say a couple of years ago that Rick Santorum would make a really good presidential candidate. I agreed with him about that, although I suspect our motivations may have been different.

  30. 30
    NickM says:

    unlike the lame Romney speech.

    What? That speech will live forever at the Corner and always be referred to as “The Speech”! Who can ever forget how profunderiferous was: “Freedom requires religion just as religion requires freedom.”

    Words etched in pure Jonah.

  31. 31
    Pb says:

    He already had my vote, but now I’m going to be even more depressed when our stupid, stupid populace fails to elect him.

    Indeed, I hope you’ll be wrong, yet fear you’ll be right, at which point, I’d surely quote this again:

    During his 1956 presidential campaign, a woman called out to Adlai E Stevenson ‘Senator, you have the vote of every thinking person!’ Stevenson called back ‘That’s not enough, madam, we need a majority!’

  32. 32
    Mary says:

    AkaDad, Buchanan was serious, not sarcastic?

  33. 33
    myiq2xu says:

    Am I psychic or what?:

    myiq2xu Says:

    I have a copy of an leaked reaction to Obama’s speech today:

    “It was his best speech EVAH! Barack Obama was uplifting and inspiring, while addressing the controvery with honesty, humility and specificity.

    Obama masterfully showed how Rev. Wright was falsely smeared while simultaneously denouncing Wright’s controversial statements that Obama obviously never heard.

    Barack Obama said it, I believe it, that settles it.”

    The speech will be at 10:15 a.m. EST.

    March 18th, 2008 at 8:37 am

  34. 34
    Mr Furious says:

    I suspect many will be watching him for the first time (such as myiq), and the delivery is not his A game. But he could not amp it up too much without drawing comparisons to Wright. And without the crowd feeding him, it remained more restrained than normal.

    But the content was fucking great. Yeah, probably too smart for the retards on the news, but I’m glad he didn;t dumb it down or reduce things to soundbites.

    This was a serious speech about a serious issue and needs to be treated that way.

  35. 35
    myiq2xu says:

    I wanted him to go with “Black is the new president, bitch”, but, in retrospect, his is probably better, given the tenor of the speech.

    Jen has a sense of humor.

    Props to her

  36. 36
    Jen says:

    Am I psychic or what?

    I think psycho is the word you’re looking for.

  37. 37
    Quiddity says:

    Obams should have thrown Wright under the bus. Wright said “God Damn White America” (in effect). Don’t kid yourselves.

  38. 38
    cleek says:

    Wright said “God Damn White America” (in effect).

    (no he didn’t) in reality.

  39. 39
    AkaDad says:

    Buchanan was serious, not sarcastic?

    He was serious. Joe Scarborough seemed to think it was a good speech as well.

  40. 40
    Sasha says:

    It really is quite magnificent, and the fact that Obama is sincere, and means it and is clearly not just reading from a teleprompter makes it even better.

    Careful, John. Your cynicism is in danger of falling away and being replaced by actual belief in change and hope.

    Just don’t boggart the Magical Unity Cookies, ‘kay?

  41. 41
    zzyzx says:

    The delivery wasn’t Obamariffic – but I’m a supporter who doesn’t think he’s always the best speaker ever – but the text? The text is exactly what he needed to say.

    Who knows how this will really play out, but I think he’ll benefit from the same thing that caused this to blow up in the first place. The press gets bored with covering the same story. Wright was something new and different, but the same 4-5 clips over and over again gets boring too. Now they’re changing the story to be how this resolves the issue.

    I’m worried about a sound byte or two played out of context, but this is the best thing he could have done. If this speech doesn’t stop the bleeding, I don’t know what would have.

    The Wright thing only could have destroyed him if it continued to build and build and build. This should stop that and hopefully next week we’ll be talking about something else. We’re running low on scandals; if this doesn’t kill him, there’s not much left that can.

  42. 42
    myiq2xu says:

    I suspect many will be watching him for the first time (such as myiq), and the delivery is not his A game. But he could not amp it up too much without drawing comparisons to Wright. And without the crowd feeding him, it remained more restrained than normal.

    I was curious about the audience. They didn’t seem too enthusiastic, but the audio sucked really bad.

    The constant “puh” sound of him breathing on the mic was a tech fuck-up and was distracting. His support people should be flogged and beaten for that.

  43. 43
    rawshark says:

    Quiddity Says:

    Obams should have thrown Wright under the bus. Wright said “God Damn White America” (in effect). Don’t kid yourselves.

    There’s the problem. It doesn’t matter what he actually says or said, people hear what they want. This’ll just lead to another ‘the question needs to be asked’ moment.

  44. 44
    over_educated says:

    myiq – I’m shocked, shocked, that you did not like the speech. Really.

  45. 45
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    Eloquent?

    Surely you jest.

    We’re grading on a curve here, although I personally found it pretty solid (I’ve only read the transcript; I didn’t see it live).

    Eloquent or not, it was pretty ballsy. “No, I’m not going to reject and denounce my pastor of the last 20 years just because he made some inflammatory remarks I don’t agree with, and fuck you for suggesting I should.”

    Definitely not your daddy’s Presidential candidate.

  46. 46
    Jen says:

    the question needs to be asked’ moment.

    …is our children learning?

    How ’bout this dumbass country that voted for Bush, sort of, twice?

    Lord, I hope so.

  47. 47
    Billy K says:

    myiq2xu Says:
    Am I psychic or what?:

    No. You’re just a deluded asshole with too much time on his hands.

  48. 48
    Leo says:

    CNN’s initial headline on the speech: “Obama Says Constitution Was Stained by ‘Sin of Slavery'”

    This nation has failed, time to find a new one.

  49. 49
    4tehlulz says:

    Wright said “God Damn White America” (in effect).

    Is Hillaryis44 down?

  50. 50
    The Other Steve says:

    This is the first time I watched a whole Obama speech.

    Only the first time?

    Interesting how uninformed you are about our candidates, given your exhuberance of opinion.

  51. 51
    myiq2xu says:

    I think psycho is the word you’re looking for.

    As a Hillary supporter I believe the correct term is “sociopath.”

    Psychopath, sociopath, just words.

  52. 52
    4tehlulz says:

    Obama Says Constitution Was Stained by ‘Sin of Slavery’”

    He also said that water is wet, the racist bastard.

  53. 53
    Otto Man says:

    Wow. Just wow.

    He knocked it all the way out of the park.

    I haven’t made a donation this year to any candidate, but I’m about to beat the shit out of my credit card.

  54. 54
    The Other Steve says:

    Obams should have thrown Wright under the bus. Wright said “God Damn White America” (in effect). Don’t kid yourselves.

    I really don’t give a shit what Wright said. He’s no threat to me or mine.

    I’m tired of cry-baby politics.

  55. 55
    Chubbs says:

    Whether he wins or not, the man has garnered my respect and admiration. That speech was not beautiful or eloquent, it was HONEST. And that, “MY FRIENDS”, is what makes all the difference. Not some trite greeting, not some BS shrilling, but an in your face, look at your country and realize that while America is great, it still has problems that need to be solved.

    In this day of fake Patriotism, and loyalty tests, this man can actually get up and speak about what people really think. I don’t know if he would make a great President, but he makes me proud as an American. That someone finally has the balls to actually talk us like adults and not 10 second attention deficit disorder kids.

  56. 56

    Brilliant speech. (Fine: delivery was a bit thin. Voice not rested after stumping for months and months.)

    More important, evolutionary. Sorry zinjanthropi. (zinjanthropussies?)

    Here’s a little ditty for you as you pick and eat the nits:

    Pick a little talk a little pick a little talk a little cheep cheep cheep pick a lot talk a little more
    pick a little talk a little pick a little talk a little cheep cheep cheep pick a lot talk a little more …
    pick a little talk a little pick a little talk a little cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep …
    — Meredith Willson, form “The Music Man”

    Pick away.

  57. 57
    myiq2xu says:

    .” We saw racial tensions bubble to the surface during the week before the South Carolina primary. The press has scoured every exit poll for the latest evidence of racial polarization, not just in terms of white and black, but black and brown as well.

    And yet, it has only been in the last couple of weeks that the discussion of race in this campaign has taken a particularly divisive turn.

    Whose campaign was pushing the race card talking points before South Carolina?

  58. 58
    Fe E says:

    They’ve changed it already

    CNN’s initial headline on the speech: “Obama Says Constitution Was Stained by ‘Sin of Slavery’”

  59. 59
    myiq2xu says:

    Only the first time?

    Interesting how uninformed you are about our candidates, given your exhuberance of opinion.

    Speeches are contrived, staged events. I can read a transcript faster.

    BTW – I rarely watch any speeches, including Hillary’s.

  60. 60
    mark says:

    CNN’s initial headline on the speech: “Obama Says Constitution Was Stained by ‘Sin of Slavery’”

    It will be interesting to hear the wingnuts defend the Constitution.

  61. 61
    Decided FenceSitter says:

    Damn car repairs – I’m limited to only $25 bucks for this month.

  62. 62
    myiq2xu says:

    Damn car repairs – I’m limited to only $25 bucks for this month.

    If you really cared you would walk.

  63. 63
    John S. says:

    BTW – I rarely watch any speeches, including Hillary’s.

    That explains a lot.

  64. 64
    Buck says:

    I also really respect the fact that he didn’t just throw Rev. Wright underneath the bus.

    I thought that was the most courageous and admirable part of the entire speech.

    And this helps explain, perhaps, my relationship with Reverend Wright. As imperfect as he may be, he has been like family to me. He strengthened my faith, officiated my wedding, and baptized my children. Not once in my conversations with him have I heard him talk about any ethnic group in derogatory terms, or treat whites with whom he interacted with anything but courtesy and respect. He contains within him the contradictions – the good and the bad – of the community that he has served diligently for so many years.

    I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother – a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe.

    These people are a part of me. And they are a part of America, this country that I love.

    The fact that this country might walk away from a guy like this in favor of a Clinton or a McCain is incomprehensible.

  65. 65
    over it says:

    I wanted him to go with “Black is the new president, bitch”, but, in retrospect, his is probably better, given the tenor of the speech.

    I heard Pat Buchanan say a couple of years ago that Rick Santorum would make a really good presidential candidate. I agreed with him about that, although I suspect our motivations may have been different.

    Jen, you are on roll….crackin’ me up. ;)

    As to the speech, I think he nailed it. I am more sure than ever that Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States. I couldn’t be more proud.

    Fight the good fight.

  66. 66
    p.lukasiak says:

    It really is quite magnificent, and the fact that Obama is sincere, and means it and is clearly not just reading from a teleprompter makes it even better.

    you aren’t saying he had it memorized I hope?

    This is a guy who knows how to give a speech. You think he “means its” because you are disposed to do so. But the fact that he’s so good at “meaning it” whatever he says allows the cynics and realists to see this as damage control, rather than sincerity.

    I also really respect the fact that he didn’t just throw Rev. Wright underneath the bus.

    Jeremiah Wright — the new Donnie McClurkin!

    The biggest criticism I have of the speech is that its way too long, and (especially the first part) way too self-serving.

    And I don’t think its going to work. Had he taken some responsibility for his campaign’s overt efforts to politicize the race issue in South Carolina, rather than acting like it “just happened”, I would believe he was sincere.

    But he didn’t. So its just another good speech by an empty suit to me.

  67. 67
    RareSanity says:

    Just donated a C-note to Obama.

    myiq2xu: You are a real “special” kind of crazy.

  68. 68

    Had he taken some responsibility for his campaign’s overt efforts to politicize the race issue in South Carolina

    You mean like how the Clinton campaign apologized for Bill’s comments? Oh, wait.

  69. 69
    cleek says:

    So its just another good speech by an empty suit to me.

    big fucking shock. i’m sure everybody here is stunned by this revelation.

  70. 70
    Xanthippas says:

    This is a guy who knows how to give a speech. You think he “means its” because you are disposed to do so. But the fact that he’s so good at “meaning it” whatever he says allows the cynics and realists to see this as damage control, rather than sincerity.

    Or, in the altnernative, you could read or listen to the speech and realize that no one else would have handled the situation as he did or said the things he said, thus leading you to realize that yes in fact there is something different about him.

  71. 71
    Neal says:

    Funny thing about our media. CNN trips over themselves to bring up the stain on the constitution thing, Fox says “Obama condemns pastor but won’t disown him”.
    The most honest headline was Matt fucking Drudge: “Obama speech in full: A more perfect union”.

  72. 72
    rawshark says:

    cleek Says:

    So its just another good speech by an empty suit to me.

    big fucking shock. i’m sure everybody here is stunned by this revelation.

    This comment was probably made by one of the commenters I don’t read anymore and in that case I’m not shocked at all.

  73. 73
    myiq2xu says:

    Just donated a C-note to Obama.

    myiq2xu: You are a real “special” kind of crazy.

    Only $100?

    Is buying food and paying the rent/mortgage really that important?

  74. 74
    John Cole says:

    you aren’t saying he had it memorized I hope?

    This is a guy who knows how to give a speech. You think he “means its” because you are disposed to do so. But the fact that he’s so good at “meaning it” whatever he says allows the cynics and realists to see this as damage control, rather than sincerity.

    Seriously, when did you become such a total jackass? No, I don’t think he memorized it, what I clearly meant was that not only is he delivering the speech, but he believes what he is saying. Ofcourse, someone actually meaning what they say is just an opportunity for you “cynics” to keep it real, because you really know he doesn’t mean any of it and is just playing the crowd.

    Christ on a crutch you are tedious.

  75. 75
    jnfr says:

    For those who couldn’t see it live, it’s up on YouTube.

  76. 76
    John S. says:

    Is buying food and paying the rent/mortgage really that important?

    I pay my mortgage in pixie dust. That’s the new currency of the realm. Don’t you keep up?

  77. 77
    The Other Steve says:

    This is a guy who knows how to give a speech. You think he “means its” because you are disposed to do so. But the fact that he’s so good at “meaning it” whatever he says allows the cynics and realists to see this as damage control, rather than sincerity.

    You are neither a realist or a cynic.

  78. 78
    Liberal Masochist says:

    Chubbs said it best. His is the proper takeaway from this speech. Could not have said it better.

  79. 79
    p.lukasiak says:

    Seriously, when did you become such a total jackass? No, I don’t think he memorized it, what I clearly meant was that not only is he delivering the speech, but he believes what he is saying. Ofcourse, someone actually meaning what they say is just an opportunity for you “cynics” to keep it real, because you really know he doesn’t mean any of it and is just playing the crowd.

    Christ on a crutch you are tedious.

    you’re rapidly descending to the level of a D&D enthusiast who doesn’t understand why everyone doesn’t aspire to be a Grand Wizard or whatever.

  80. 80
    Ninerdave says:

    This is the first time I watched a whole Obama speech.

    Underwhelming.

    Not enough pandering or finger in the political wind moments for you?

  81. 81
    Phoebe says:

    I’m tired of people calling him a great speaker. He’s an okay speaker but a great thinker.

  82. 82
    cleek says:

    do check out America’s Shittiest Website ™

    KLo:

    The more I think about this speech, the more I think Obama said: Damn straight, Rev. Wright is angry. That’s how I wound up at his church. That’s why I stay there. I’m mad too, I just control it better. Now let’s get electing me president so we can all feel good.

    Roger Clegg

    It’s hard to imagine how someone who listened to this speech, and who had followed at all the controversy of the last few days, could still view Obama as somehow transcending politics. It’s a speech, and a controversy, that are predictable and dispiriting — that with minor changes one could imagine attributing to Hillary or Jesse. This is not damning, but the problem for Obama is that he had promised more, and now that’s clearly not what he’s going to deliver.

    Derbyshire

    Blame whitey, and raise high the red flag of socialism. This is a serious candidate for the Presidency? Toast, toast.

    what a bunch of of bitter old douchenozzles.

  83. 83
    dslak says:

    you’re rapidly descending to the level of a D&D enthusiast who doesn’t understand why everyone doesn’t aspire to be a Grand Wizard or whatever.

    It seems you’ve confused D&D with the KKK, and thereby ruined your joke.

  84. 84
    p.lukasiak says:

    Or, in the altnernative, you could read or listen to the speech and realize that no one else would have handled the situation as he did or said the things he said, thus leading you to realize that yes in fact there is something different about him.

    or in the alter-alternative, you could realize that he’s not the only person on the planet campable of giving such a speech — and that he’s just a typical politician who is saying what he thinks he needs to say to maintain his viability as a candidate.

  85. 85
    PK says:

    Hey myiq2xu,
    I have never listened to a single speech of Bush, McCain, Hillary or Obama, and I got rid of Cable 2yrs ago. And yet I have figured out that Bush is an incompetent moron who has screwed up the country, McCain is going to follow in Bush’s footsteps, Hillary is a conniving bitch who wants power at all costs, Obama is best option available to this country and you are a jackass! Its called reading moron!

  86. 86
    p.lukasiak says:

    It seems you’ve confused D&D with the KKK, and thereby ruined your joke.

    you’re right, of course. as a non-D&D enthusiast who had friend who got totally caught up in it, all I remember about it is how annoying they got about it, and that it was about wizards and magic and stuff.

  87. 87
    Q says:

    Chubbs said it best. His is the proper takeaway from this speech. Could not have said it better.

    I second that…

  88. 88
    p.lukasiak says:

    what a bunch of of bitter old douchenozzles.

    Derbyshire reached new heights of douchebaggery, K-Lo was just average douchebag.

    Clegg, on the other hand, probably nailed in terms of how this speech will be received by non-MUPpets.

  89. 89
    shortstop says:

    No. You’re just a deluded asshole with too much time on his hands.

    Quite an amazing amount of time, really. Job. Family. Friends. Outside interests. Fresh air. All good things, myiq2xu. Honest. Check one or more of them out.

    And yes, Jen is cracking me up, too. Is this the same Jen who makes me laugh over at Sadly, No!?

  90. 90
    The Other Steve says:

    or in the alter-alternative, you could realize that he’s not the only person on the planet campable of giving such a speech

    Nobody is saying that.

    We’re just saying he’s a lot better than Hillary or McCain.

  91. 91
    myiq2xu says:

    PK Says:

    Hey myiq2xu,
    I have never listened to a single speech of Bush, McCain, Hillary or Obama, and I got rid of Cable 2yrs ago. And yet I have figured out that Bush is an incompetent moron who has screwed up the country, McCain is going to follow in Bush’s footsteps, Hillary is a conniving bitch who wants power at all costs, Obama is best option available to this country and you are a jackass! Its called reading moron!

    You should take your own advice moron!

    Speeches are contrived, staged events. I can read a transcript faster.

    Jeebus! Kool-aid must really kill brain cells.

  92. 92
    grandpajohn says:

    I am going to get back into mode by picturing Bush trying to give this speech.

    Give it? Hell he couldn’t even read it

  93. 93
    dslak says:

    If you’re supporting Obama because you think Hillary is too power-hungry, you might consider the possible reasons why a person might run for president, then consider what about that office makes them put up with some much shit. Just a thought.

  94. 94
    rawshark says:

    Derbyshire:

    Blame whitey, and raise high the red flag of socialism. This is a serious candidate for the Presidency? Toast, toast.

    People hear what they want.

  95. 95
    Neo says:

    Just how is a President Obama going to take on those who’s intentions are genuinely evil, when he can’t confront the softer prejudice and misunderstanding in the church he has been attending for some 20 years ?

    Talk about a lack of leadership, and that’s the bottom line.

  96. 96
    Bubblegum Tate says:

    Why is Obama continually playing the race card by talking about angry white people?

    ZING!

    Seriously, though, it’s a rare pleasure to see such a complicated and long-festering problem articulated so well and sincerely. Even my cynical ass took a step or two toward embracing the MUP.

    Of course, the wingnuts will scream and howl and bitch and whine as predicted above: “He didn’t disown himself enough! He hates America! He admitted his pastor is a racist, so that makes him a racist!” For example, nice to see that America’s Shittiest Website is staying true to form.

  97. 97
    The Other Steve says:

    Clegg, on the other hand, probably nailed in terms of how this speech will be received by non-MUPpets.

    Can you explain what you hope to gain by calling us MUPpets?

  98. 98
    rawshark says:

    Neo Says:

    Just how is a President Obama going to take on those who’s intentions are genuinely evil, when he can’t confront the softer prejudice and misunderstanding in the church he has been attending for some 20 years ?

    Talk about a lack of leadership, and that’s the bottom line.

    Wow.

  99. 99
    bootlegger says:

    BOH has gotten back to saying things that no other politician will dare say. I’m not talking about race, I’m talking about the things that no politician will say because they are worried about upsetting the people. He’s told people they will have to sacrifice, he’s told people they need to turn off the tv and read to their kids, he’s told congregations to reach out to Muslims and homosexuals, and I truly believe that it is this willingness to be up front with his beliefs that made him so popular. It’s good to see him get back to it.

  100. 100
    The Other Steve says:

    Just how is a President Obama going to take on those who’s intentions are genuinely evil, when he can’t confront the softer prejudice and misunderstanding in the church he has been attending for some 20 years ?

    Didn’t he just address that?

    Or like myiq, did you not read the speech either?

  101. 101
    dslak says:

    Just how is a President Obama going to take on those who’s intentions are genuinely evil, when he can’t confront the softer prejudice and misunderstanding in the church he has been attending for some 20 years ?

    Shorter Neo: How can we fight real evil if we’re not willing to abandon all of our associates for being imperfect?

  102. 102
    bootlegger says:

    Just how is a President Obama going to take on those who’s intentions are genuinely evil, when he can’t confront the softer prejudice and misunderstanding in the church he has been attending for some 20 years ?

    Talk about a lack of leadership, and that’s the bottom line.

    I didn’t know he was a leader in his church. Missed that part in his resume.

  103. 103
    w vincentz says:

    The power of Barack’s speech is that he defined himself and caused those that attempted to define him to sulk away.
    I agree with the general premise that in order to go forward, to address the very real concerns that face us, we must put past justifications for division behind us.
    His appeal will continue to grow.

  104. 104
    p.lukasiak says:

    Can you explain what you hope to gain by calling us MUPpets?

    nothing. but when it comes to MUPpets, there is nothing to be lost in calling them “MUPpets” either. They’re on the Pony, and can’t be convinced to get off of it.

  105. 105
    cleek says:

    Clegg, on the other hand, probably nailed in terms of how this speech will be received by non-MUPpets.

    Can you explain what you hope to gain by calling us MUPpets?

    besides attention ? probably nothing.

  106. 106
    Mr Furious says:

    One thing I am left with is the feeling that this whole thing not only didn’t kill him, it only made him stronger…

  107. 107
    cleek says:

    Just how is a President Obama going to take on those who’s intentions are genuinely evil, when he can’t confront the softer prejudice and misunderstanding in the church he has been attending for some 20 years ?

    attention parents everywhere: don’t let your children eat paint chips.

  108. 108
    ThymeZone says:

    Haven’t read the thread, no time. However, listened to the CNN blatherheads (Wolf The Idiot Blitzer and his merry elves) talking about the speech after it was over, in the car on the way here today ……

    In all my political life, I have never heard such gushing over a speech by these cablefolks. They were totally blown away by the speech, saying that it “set a new tone for political dialogue” and so forth.

    If Obama’s intent was to hit a home run out of the Cable Media ballpark, it appears that he did.

    I have a hunch that the Rev Wright thing will end up being a plus for him. He is the kind of politician who can pull that off, and if today is any indication, he will.

  109. 109
    dslak says:

    Just as Hillary is a conniving bitch only after power, and Obama a content-free affirmative action beneficiary who gives good speeches, so are Clinton supporters purely reasonable and rational in their support for her, while Obama supporters only know how to make emotional appeals.

    The conventional wisdom must not be challenged.

  110. 110
    John S. says:

    you might consider the possible reasons why a person might run for president

    Because they want power. Duh.

    But the questions are why do they want that power and what do they want to do with it.

    According to Obama in this speech (and his campaign in general), it’s because things are FUBAR and he wants to try and fix it. Maybe he’s full of shit, maybe he’s not. Frankly nobody knows one way or the other.

  111. 111
    p.lukasiak says:

    Nobody is saying that.

    uh, I included the quote where someone did say it, steve. There was no reference to other candidates.

  112. 112
    elf says:

    This speech exemplifies the America I grew up to believe in.

    And I cried reading it. So I am a hopeless idealist, a believer in All Creatures,Great and Small. Do unto others, and no I do not have to go to some Church to understand any of that. What has taken me half a century to come to grips with is the fear of difference this country has; oh and the greed.
    Nevermind the fact we are all human beings and that in itself this country would rather not face.

  113. 113
    John S. says:

    but when it comes to MUPpets, there is nothing to be lost in calling them “MUPpets” either. They’re on the Pony, and can’t be convinced to get off of it.

    Paul sees his reflection in the mirror.

  114. 114
    Krista says:

    myiq2xu Says:

    “We can pounce on some gaffe by a Hillary supporter as evidence that she’s playing the race card.”

    This appears to be a policy statement.

    Um, myiq? If you wonder why people think you’re a dishonest troll, it’s due to you saying things like that.

    The quote…in context:

    For we have a choice in this country. We can accept a politics that breeds division, and conflict, and cynicism. We can tackle race only as spectacle — as we did in the OJ trial — or in the wake of tragedy, as we did in the aftermath of Katrina — or as fodder for the nightly news. We can play Reverend Wright’s sermons on every channel, every day and talk about them from now until the election, and make the only question in this campaign whether or not the American people think that I somehow believe or sympathize with his most offensive words. We can pounce on some gaffe by a Hillary supporter as evidence that she’s playing the race card, or we can speculate on whether white men will all flock to John McCain in the general election regardless of his policies.

    We can do that. But if we do, I can tell you that in the next election, we’ll be talking about some other distraction. And then another one. And then another one. And nothing will change.

  115. 115
    ThymeZone says:

    If you wonder why people think you’re a dishonest troll

    He doesn’t wonder that. He just doesn’t care.

  116. 116
    ThymeZone says:

    I am now listening to the whole speech for the first time.

    All I can say is, wow.

    Just wow. This guy is exactly what this country needs.

  117. 117
    myiq2xu says:

    All the heaping, steaming piles of praise for Obama’s speech might be more credible if they weren’t:

    1. Predictable

    2. Suggested by the GOS memo

    I’ve seen three comments in this thread where people claimed to have been moved to tears by just reading it.

    Jeebus!

  118. 118
    cleek says:

    i only wish my dear sweet wife hadn’t just asked me, after seeing the latest credit card statement, if i planned on “giving Obama all of our money”. cause, after that speech, i’d sure like to send another C over to Mr Obama’s campaign.

  119. 119
    bootlegger says:

    He doesn’t wonder that. He just doesn’t care.

    I thought “he” was a “she”, “hey baby take a walk on the wild side.”

  120. 120
    over_educated says:

    I suspect myiq is:

    1. On Hillary’s payroll, or, more likley;
    2. On Obama’s payroll as an attempt portray Hillary supporters as six-kinds of crazy.

    P. lukaisk is actually in the employ of Hillary I believe, he is a spin-professional.

  121. 121
    myiq2xu says:

    Um, myiq? If you wonder why people think you’re a dishonest troll, it’s due to you saying things like that.

    Um, Krista? It’s called “snark.”

    BTW – Show me where I have ever been dishonest. I’ll sit down while I’m waiting.

  122. 122
    dslak says:

    Until we see a life-long member of the KKK moved to tears over Obama’s speech, I don’t think we can say it’s anything other than mere political pablum.

    Hell, Obama probabaly even wrote all that stuff down before he said it, just to make sure it sounded good. Real politicians can give to-the-point, error-free speeches at the drop of a hat.

  123. 123
    bootlegger says:

    I’ve seen three comments in this thread where people claimed to have been moved to tears by just reading it.

    So what? Would you rather people puked? Or laughed out loud? Or said “damn” I wouldn’t trust her with your country?

  124. 124
    Conservatively Liberal says:

    you’re right, of course. as a non-D&D enthusiast who had friend who got totally caught up in it, all I remember about it is how annoying they got about it, and that it was about wizards and magic and stuff.

    Shorter Paul: I like to pretend that I know what I am talking about, that is why I support Hillary.

    I do have to say that calling yourself ‘a non-D&D enthusiast’ is interesting. Let me guess, you are a non-thinking enthusiast too, right? Are you a pro-Obama losing or anti-Hillary losing enthusiast?

    All I have to say is that if p.luk and noiq did not like or were unimpressed with the speech, then it must have been a good one. If either of them had liked it, it would have been a disaster for Obama. ;)

  125. 125
    ThymeZone says:

    I thought “he” was a “she”,

    Don’t ask me, I am OUT of the gender id business here.

    Too much work, not enough pay.

  126. 126
    Buck says:

    Oh man… Great speech… I’m in tears!

    (Make that four, myiq2xu, beotch)

  127. 127
    myiq2xu says:

    I thought “he” was a “she”, “hey baby take a walk on the wild side.”

    I don’t date outside my species.

  128. 128
    bootlegger says:

    I’d be more convinced by the criticism if some was offered about the content of the speech that wasn’t:
    1) Generally dismissive because it came from a politician,
    2) Targeted at the people that liked it.

  129. 129
    Ninerdave says:

    Just had a chance to listen to the speech.

    Irregardless of the surrounding circumstances, I thought it was a damn lucid summary of race in America today.

  130. 130
    Krista says:

    Well, if that was snark, then I apologize. I called you dishonest because your statement certainly appeared to be a very dishonest attempt to portray a line from the speech as having an intent opposite from what it really was. And unfortunately, as we know all too well, that type of occurrence isn’t exactly a rarity in the political world. Thus my initial reaction.

    But if you say it was snark, I’ll take that at face value and retract my statement about you being dishonest.

    Sometimes your snark and your seriousness are indistinguishable. I don’t know if that means that you need better snark, or that your serious statements are sometimes so ludicrous as to appear farcical. Something to ponder at any rate.

  131. 131
    bootlegger says:

    I don’t date outside my species.

    That wasn’t an invitation, I was just making fun of the “gendered” discourse. Get a grip.

  132. 132
    ThymeZone says:

    Um, Krista? It’s called “snark.”

    Snark is mostly about style. The content is the problem with you, not the style.

    You snarkize or humorize or growlize (I do all three, for theatrical effect) but at the end of the day, it’s the content that counts.

    Your content basically says one thing, over and over, a hundred times a day: I like Hillary and don’t like Obama and nothing anyone says here will stop me from saying it over and over, a hundred times a day. So there.

    That’s it, your entire message, day in and day out, day after fucking day.

    As smar and funny as you are, you are unfortunately a Johnny One Note with no real message to deliver at all. When pressed for one, you come back with snarky one liners.

    The act wore thin a long time ago, dude.

  133. 133
    myiq2xu says:

    Sometimes your snark and your seriousness are indistinguishable.

    Sometimes I’m not sure myself.

  134. 134
    Ninerdave says:

    I don’t date outside my species.

    So you’re celibate eh?

  135. 135
    Krista says:

    At least CNN.com has a decent headline about it:

    Latest News
    CNNMoney: Fed may cut rates — will it help?
    CNNMoney: Poll: Inflation is top economic worry
    How big will IRS check be? You can see
    Obama: We can move beyond racial wounds
    Poll: McCain, Obama, Clinton in dead heat

  136. 136
    bootlegger says:

    Sometimes I’m not sure myself.

    Reminds me of a great bit on the Simpsons, “Homerpalooza” I believe:

    First teen: That’s cool.
    Second teen: Are you being sarcastic.
    First teen: I don’t know anymore.

  137. 137
    myiq2xu says:

    The act wore thin a long time ago, dude.

    Keep talking smack and I’ll start agreeing with you.

  138. 138
    ThymeZone says:

    Keep talking smack and I’ll start agreeing with you.

    Oh, that’s low. Low, I tell you. Not even you would stoop to that.

    Demi, sure. But not you.

  139. 139
    Laertes says:

    It’s gotta be frustrating as hell running against Obama. You think you’ve got a promising line of attack going, and all it does is give him the opportunity to give a great speech and remind everyone of why they liked him in the first place.

    If Hillary is smart, she’ll quit with the silly smears and just huddle with her lawyers. She can’t hope to win this unless she can manage some kind of legal tricks to steal the election.

  140. 140
    bootlegger says:

    I’m listening to the Supreme Court oral arguments in D.C. v. Heller. Sure paints a strong contrast to the level of discourse on blogs.

  141. 141
    Conservatively Liberal says:

    If Bill is referred to as ‘The Big Dawg’, and Hillary is referred to as ‘The Bitch’ (or ‘The Big Dawg’s Bitch’), then their supporters must be Pups!

    We should call them PupPets every time they start up with their mindless, incessant yipping and yapping at everything they see. Now we need to see if we can get the Clintons to put the damn pups back in the litter box so they will stop pissing and crapping all over the place.

  142. 142
    J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford says:

    bootlegger Says:

    Sometimes I’m not sure myself.

    Reminds me of a great bit on the Simpsons, “Homerpalooza” I believe:

    First teen: That’s cool.
    Second teen: Are you being sarcastic.
    First teen: I don’t know anymore.

    March 18th, 2008 at 12:39 pm

    I was just going to post this.

  143. 143
    cleek says:

    I’m listening to the Supreme Court oral arguments in D.C. v. Heller. Sure paints a strong contrast to the level of discourse on blogs.

    oh yeah, those fuckers in the SCOTUS can lay down the trash talk!

  144. 144
    ThymeZone says:

    …is our children learning?

    How ‘bout this dumbass country that voted for Bush, sort of, twice?

    Lord, I hope so.

    Same here. And I think Barack is the guy who can put food on our families.

  145. 145
    Z says:

    This is the actual magic in the MUP: the ability to take a step back from the hysteria, see the bigger picture, and speak to the real issues.

    This is also an issue that is personal for me. I have white racist relatives (although, because they aren’t KKK-style racists, they would never admit it) and I have a black friend so close she is family (I’ve been to her family gatherings). It is a strange sensation to be part of the generation that is just past the nasty, bitter fights. You grow up with elders who were scarred by civil rights, and peers who can’t imagine life before it. It isn’t that Obama is magically transcending race, it is that he is finally speaking for those of us who have grown up living both with race and beyond it.

  146. 146
    Davebo says:

    or in the alter-alternative, you could realize that he’s not the only person on the planet campable of giving such a speech

    Perhaps not, but he’s the only one who actually has.

  147. 147
    bootlegger says:

    oh yeah, those fuckers in the SCOTUS can lay down the trash talk!

    Actually, I’m surprised about how adroitly they do lay down some smack, particularly when they argue one of the solicitors into a corner and say something like: “certainly you don’t suggest that handguns should only be used to open tin cans!”

  148. 148
    Phoebe says:

    Not just Blitzer. I was watching on MSNBC and Joe Scarborough was clearly impressed. He righted the ship and steered straight for the ever-pointless “but what will OTHER people think of this speech?” speculation, yes, but only after some pretty spot-on praise, made in the context of the panel’s pre-speech speculation on what the speech needed to do. I think he was very surprised, in fact.

  149. 149
    Xenos says:

    In all my political life, I have never heard such gushing over a speech by these cablefolks. They were totally blown away by the speech, saying that it “set a new tone for political dialogue” and so forth.

    Funny thing that. It was an excellent speech, well delivered and handling deftly some sensitive issues. But a great speech? Like ‘I Have a Dream’, ‘Cross of Gold’, or ‘What to a Slave is the Fourth of July’?

    Again, it was an excellent speech, but it is hardly one for ages – it did not tell us anything that we did not already know, and it did not have the kind of poetry that inspires people to a lifetime of struggle. All this gushing from the cable-types tells us is what a bunch of cretins we have allowed to mediate our national discourse.

    Reverend Wright’s stuff is better, and I expect Obama would agree with me on that.

  150. 150
    jnfr says:

    Ninerdave said:

    Irregardless of the surrounding circumstances, I thought it was a damn lucid summary of race in America today.

    Obama’s speeches don’t generally affect me as they do many people, but I liked this one very much because it showed his thinking on this subject, and his thinking was clear and straightforward and did not evade or dissemble or pander. As someone who grew up in a very racist family, for some years even in the Jim Crow era in Mississippi, hearing straight talk on race is like a lovely summer breeze.

  151. 151
    horatius says:

    I don’t date outside my species.

    My heartfelt gratitude for not corrupting the human race.

  152. 152
    PaulB says:

    All the heaping, steaming piles of praise for Obama’s speech might be more credible if they weren’t:

    And all your cynicism and attempts to pretend that it was not a praiseworthy speech might be more credible if they were not, in fact, entirely predictable. Might I suggest you refrain from throwing stones? Your glass house is entirely too fragile.

  153. 153
    bootlegger says:

    What Z said. This change is going to happen and it will not be pretty, as we can see. But I want that world for my kids. Shit, they have no idea what the fuss is about. My kids went to a mostly black daycare in Alabama and my oldest heard about racism one day and asked me about it. He looked at me like I was insane! “How could anyone believe that?” I had to insist that I was telling the truth. This is how our race problems should disappear, as a caricature of history.

  154. 154
    dslak says:

    And all your cynicism and attempts to pretend that it was not a praiseworthy speech might be more credible if they were not, in fact, entirely predictable.

    No one could have predicted that myiq would not have been impressed by Obama’s speech. I’m sure you were as surprised as I was to learn that he didn’t really like it much, at all.

  155. 155
    The Other Steve says:

    nothing. but when it comes to MUPpets, there is nothing to be lost in calling them “MUPpets” either. They’re on the Pony, and can’t be convinced to get off of it.

    Can you explain what you hope to gain by calling us MUPpets?

    You claim nothing, but clearly there is a reason behind this or you wouldn’t have felt the need to use it twice more.

  156. 156
    Wilfred says:

    There can’t be a genuine dialog about race without a sense of history that goes beyond “Lincoln freed the slaves”. I think Obama just sent a clear message to the Democratic Party that by not throwing Wright under a bus he intends to stand with the great majority of black and colored people who also would not. Not while the likes of Hagee, Rod Parsley and Robertson are never censored or abandoned for their racist and bigoted comments.
    White Christians reserve forgiveness in this world for their own kind. Everyone else has to wait for what Malcolm X mockingly referred to as “Beulah’s Land’ – the reward that comes with paradise.
    The nonsense charge of racism directed against Wright it typical. As if a member of a minority group has the power and means to rape, kill or otherwise forcibly detain a member of the oppressing class. It is to equate words with action – thus conflating someone who says “God damn America” with a class and race that literally damned the members of the darker skinned races to pain and suffering for hundreds of years. This is what Wright mocks; black artists have done the same for generations.
    I now believe that if Obama is robbed of the nomination, if the dream is deferred, as it were, he’s going to walk from the party. I hope so.

  157. 157
    rawshark says:

    ThymeZone Says:

    …is our children learning?

    How ‘bout this dumbass country that voted for Bush, sort of, twice?

    Lord, I hope so.

    Same here. And I think Barack is the guy who can put food on our families.

    Quality Bushism right there.

  158. 158
    The Other Andrew says:

    Obama talking about the real issues (i.e., the economy) and pointing out the fake ones (i.e., the racial shellgame) has to be terrifying the right.

    Republicans rely on cynicism and apathy to get elected and create a blind spot where they can operate freely. If Obama can overcome those two things by making America believe in America again, he’s truly invaluable.

  159. 159
    HyperIon says:

    Liberal Masochist Says:

    Chubbs said it best.

    i agree. good on you, Chubbs.

  160. 160
    Xenos says:

    >> I don’t date outside my species.

    My heartfelt gratitude for not corrupting the human race.

    I just glad that he is not corrupting Canis lupus familiaris.

  161. 161
    Brachiator says:

    I am watching it live. Seems to be, well, reasonable and well thought out and works for me.

    I didn’t get to hear the entire speech, only pieces, and am trying to get through the transcript. Overall, I thought it was fairly good, though in listening to some responses from a couple of the local talk radio stations, it is clear that some people refuse to deal with any nuance, and expect that every presidential candidate, and every “real American” express a total, complete and unconditional love for America and everything that has ever happened in the country. Period. End of Issue.

    myiq2xu Says:

    ” We saw racial tensions bubble to the surface during the week before the South Carolina primary. The press has scoured every exit poll for the latest evidence of racial polarization, not just in terms of white and black, but black and brown as well.

    And yet, it has only been in the last couple of weeks that the discussion of race in this campaign has taken a particularly divisive turn.

    Whose campaign was pushing the race card talking points before South Carolina?

    Why, the Clinton campaign, of course. They still are. Witness Bill Clinton’s recent accept to spin the lie that he never never ever sought to exploit race issues coming out of the South Carolina primary. And they will be pushing the race card in order to try to maximize their votes in the upcoming Pennsylvania primary. A large win would allow them to reasonably claim that wins in big states are an endorsement of their belief that Senator Clinton would be the best nominee going into the general election.

    By the way, if the Clinton campaign people had any guts, they would back up parts of Obama’s speech. But they don’t, so they won’t.

  162. 162
    The Other Steve says:

    Obama’s speeches don’t generally affect me as they do many people, but I liked this one very much because it showed his thinking on this subject, and his thinking was clear and straightforward and did not evade or dissemble or pander. As someone who grew up in a very racist family, for some years even in the Jim Crow era in Mississippi, hearing straight talk on race is like a lovely summer breeze.

    This is the strength of Obama, and why he differs so from past Democratic candidates over the past 40 years or so.

    That is, he explained his thinking.

    So many liberals have started down a path of trying to solve a problem without first explaining what the problem is. As such, people are not prepared with the groundwork of thought.

    But more importantly, an aspect of Obama’s thinking is that he acknowledges differences of opinion. He doesn’t allow himself to get boxed into a corner. He comes right out and says “Ok, you may be right, but…”

    These are simply rhetorical skills, but the idiots simply do not recognize how important they are in politics.

  163. 163
    4tehlulz says:

    And I think Barack is the guy who can put food on our families.

    Obviously, this is a racist codeword using cannibalism imagery.

  164. 164
    ThymeZone says:

    Obama talking about the real issues (i.e., the economy) and pointing out the fake ones (i.e., the racial shellgame) has to be terrifying the right.

    Spot on. This is exactly why I support the guy and send him my hard earned dough. I don’t think he has all the answers, I don’t think he is as polished a policy wonk as HRC, I don’t think he knows the corridors of power the way McCain does.

    But I like the way he takes a hard subject and talks plainly and intelligently about it, doesn’t pander to me, doesn’t talk down to me, doesn’t lie to me.

    And he does this in a way that can’t be faked. If I wanted good old fashioned bullshit, fakery and lies, I could choose HRC or John McPain. I want different, I want honest (even if I dont agree) and I want sincerity.

    Obama is the guy who can deliver those goods. That’s why people set him a fundraising record with $100 donations. Not because he’s got all the answers, but more because he can ask the right questions.

  165. 165
    The Other Steve says:

    Obama talking about the real issues (i.e., the economy) and pointing out the fake ones (i.e., the racial shellgame) has to be terrifying the right.

    There are a lot of people on the right, and on the left, who have exploited these differences for their own political gain.

  166. 166
    jnfr says:

    That’s very true, and I notice that that part of his speech (where he calls out race-baiting as a cover for throwing all working class people under the bus) is the part no one in the traditional media is discussing.

  167. 167
    cbear says:

    And I think Barack is the guy who can put food on our families.

    I just hope he can solve the problem of too many OB/GYN’s not able to practice their love with women all across the country.

  168. 168
    PK says:

    If you’re supporting Obama because you think Hillary is too power-hungry, you might consider the possible reasons why a person might run for president, then consider what about that office makes them put up with some much shit. Just a thought.

    I don’t think that people support Obama only because they think Hillary is power hungry. Its a bit more complicated than that! I assume that, Hillary, McCain and Obama all want power, but some want it more desperately than others.

    Just as Hillary is a conniving bitch only after power, and Obama a content-free affirmative action beneficiary who gives good speeches, so are Clinton supporters purely reasonable and rational in their support for her, while Obama supporters only know how to make emotional appeals.

    I have no idea if Obama benefited from affirmative action. Hillary would not be where she is today if Bill Clinton had not been a popular president. Bush would be lying drunk in a ditch somewhere if he did not have a famous father. No politician makes it completely on his/her own today. Yor question about Hilalry supporters being reasonable and rational and Obama’s being emotional is nonsense. I’m sure a lot of emotional people support Hillary and a lot of rational people support Obama.

  169. 169
    dslak says:

    I don’t think that people support Obama only because they think Hillary is power hungry.

    I didn’t say that all did, so this is moot.

    I’m sure a lot of emotional people support Hillary and a lot of rational people support Obama.

    I was being facetious when I said everything you’re referring to in this paragraph. I thought the bit about how nobody can challenge the conventional wisdom was a give-away.

  170. 170
    bILL b says:

    “Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes.”

    This is just the opposite of what he said over the weekend.

  171. 171
    Nikki says:

    Black is the new president, bitch

    Damn. I want that on a T-shirt!

  172. 172
    rawshark says:

    should we start a collection to help John buy some quality blog software. This crapshoot where I don’t know if BJ is working or if I will be able to post my comments without wordpress farting is getting old.

  173. 173
    dslak says:

    This is just the opposite of what he said over the weekend.

    No, it’s not, but kudos for trying.

  174. 174
    rawshark says:

    bILL b Says:

    “Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes.”

    This is just the opposite of what he said over the weekend.

    And Bush said starting hostilities without an exit strategy is a bad idea. But then did it anyway so I guess Obama is presidential material.

  175. 175
    sglover says:

    I could’ve done without the mandatory genuflection to Holy Israel, but it was mercifully short. All in all, a pretty good speech.

  176. 176
    Gus says:

    biLL b, link please.

  177. 177
    myiq2xu says:

    Why, the Clinton campaign, of course. They still are. Witness Bill Clinton’s recent accept to spin the lie that he never never ever sought to exploit race issues coming out of the South Carolina primary.

    Wrong as usual.

    From Huffington Post:

    The Obama campaign recently prepared a detailed memo, obtained by the Huffington Post and made public elsewhere, listing various instances in which it perceived the Clinton’s campaign to have deliberately played the race card in the Democratic primary.

    As for Jesse Jackson:

    Clinton’s sly trick, supposedly, was to mention Jackson and no other Democrat who had previously prevailed in South Carolina–thereby demeaning Obama’s almost certain victory as a “black” thing. But the fact remains that Clinton, who watches internal polls closely and is an astute observer, knew whereof he spoke: when the returns were counted, Obama’s and Jackson’s percentages of the overall vote and the key to their victories–a heavy majority among blacks–truly were comparable. The only other Democrats Clinton could have mentioned would have been himself (who won more than two-thirds of the vote in 1992, far more than either Jackson or Obama) and John Edwards (who won only 45 percent in 2004, far less than either Jackson or Obama). Given the differences, given that by mentioning himself, Clinton could have easily been criticized for being self-congratulatory, and given that Edwards had not yet dropped out of the 2008 race, the omissions were not at all surprising. By mentioning Jackson alone, the former president was being accurate–and, perhaps, both modest and polite. But Obama’s supporters willfully hammered him as a cagey race-baiter.

    Not everyone agreed with the race-baiting charge–including Jesse Jackson himself. Jackson noted proudly to Essence magazine that he had, indeed, won in 1984 and 1988, and, even though he had endorsed Obama, criticized the Obama campaign, saying, “again, I think it’s some more gotcha politics.”

  178. 178
    numbskull says:

    This is just the opposite of what he said over the weekend.

    I thought what he said over the weekend was that he was absent when Wright gave the sermon that has been played over and over on cable news. I don’t think he said that he never heard Wright make controversial statements. However, if you can provide a link that supports your claim, I’m all ears and eyes.

    As for the speech, I thought it was pretty good. It certainly was more direct than any I’ve heard from any other candidate on any other topic this season. I don’t think it was all that nuanced – it’s not hard to understand the meaning of any of the points he discusses. It was, however, not short. I don’t see how it could have been an honest commentary on the issue unless it were long, though.

  179. 179
    Davis X. Machina says:

    CNN’s initial headline on the speech: “Obama Says Constitution Was Stained by ‘Sin of Slavery’

    Replacing “Sun Rises in East”? This is controversial? I remember Lincoln saying something to this effect. Must we throw Abe under the bus?

  180. 180
    John S. says:

    myiq2xu-

    TNR is America’s second shittiest website.

    Perhaps they aren’t the best source to cite for making your case. Never mind the fact that the author – Sean Wilentz – is a pretty heavy Clinton partisan.
    I realize that you are heavily invested in the anti-Obama groupthink, but do you ever refer to sources of the non-partisan variety?

  181. 181
    myiq2xu says:

    Now here’s an objective assessment:

    While both Obama and Clinton supporters came away impressed by Hussein Obama X’s speech this morning, I was rather disappointed. For instance, I thought that Hussein X could have spent far more time detailing his plans to truck all white people off to reparations camps where we’ll be forced to do lawn work for Mexican Reconquistadores and global caliphate.

  182. 182
    Liberal Masochist says:

    Just anted up my first $100 for Obama.

  183. 183
    myiq2xu says:

    Perhaps they aren’t the best source to cite for making your case.

    What part is not factually correct?

  184. 184
    Krista says:

    Again, it was an excellent speech, but it is hardly one for ages – it did not tell us anything that we did not already know, and it did not have the kind of poetry that inspires people to a lifetime of struggle. All this gushing from the cable-types tells us is what a bunch of cretins we have allowed to mediate our national discourse.

    Well, the bar HAS been set pretty low by the current White House resident, no?

    Obama is the guy who can deliver those goods. That’s why people set him a fundraising record with $100 donations. Not because he’s got all the answers, but more because he can ask the right questions.

    You know, I think that’s it. I don’t think that Obama’s supporters expect him to solve all of America’s problems (and the world’s problems too, just for shits and giggles). But when is the last time we heard a politician actually admitting that there is still racial tension and resentment in America, and that it’s holding you back? He’s talking about stuff that desperately needs to be talked about — stuff that other politicians sweep under the rug, or pretend is just symptomatic of a few select groups. He’s a politician, but from the outside looking in, he really does sound different than all the rest.

  185. 185
    RareSanity says:

    The Obama campaign recently prepared a detailed memo, obtained by the Huffington Post and made public elsewhere, listing various instances in which it perceived the Clinton’s campaign to have deliberately played the race card in the Democratic primary.

    Doesn’t this prove his point? If it had said “A strategy memo obtained by HuffPo outlines the Obama campaign’s plan to use race to garner votes.” Then you would have proved a point.

    What evidence do you have that the Obama campaign used race to garner votes in the South Carolina Primary?

  186. 186
    binzinerator says:

    myiq:

    Show me where I have ever been dishonest.

    John, wasn’t this the guy who kept saying in another thread you had CDS, even after multiple times of you clearly stating you would vote for HRC if she won the nomination? Wasn’t this the same jerk who you talked about banning because he was being such an intellectually dishonest prick?

    I remember I went to Cleek’s site right after that thread and downloaded his “pie” script. It’s sitting on my desktop, never pie’d anyone here before, but I think it’s time to install it.

  187. 187
    myiq2xu says:

    Doesn’t this prove his point?

    Prove whose point?

    I asked:

    Whose campaign was pushing the race card talking points before South Carolina?

    Brachiator Says:
    Why, the Clinton campaign, of course.

    I responded with the memo from the Obama campaign pushing the race card talking points.

    Reading is a life skill. Jeebus!

  188. 188
    John S. says:

    What part is not factually correct?

    You’re kidding, right? In this the entire excerpt:

    Clinton’s sly trick, supposedly, was to mention Jackson and no other Democrat who had previously prevailed in South Carolina—thereby demeaning Obama’s almost certain victory as a “black” thing. But the fact remains that Clinton, who watches internal polls closely and is an astute observer, knew whereof he spoke: when the returns were counted, Obama’s and Jackson’s percentages of the overall vote and the key to their victories—a heavy majority among blacks—truly were comparable. The only other Democrats Clinton could have mentioned would have been himself (who won more than two-thirds of the vote in 1992, far more than either Jackson or Obama) and John Edwards (who won only 45 percent in 2004, far less than either Jackson or Obama). Given the differences, given that by mentioning himself, Clinton could have easily been criticized for being self-congratulatory, and given that Edwards had not yet dropped out of the 2008 race, the omissions were not at all surprising. By mentioning Jackson alone, the former president was being accurate—and, perhaps, both modest and polite. But Obama’s supporters willfully hammered him as a cagey race-baiter.

    Not everyone agreed with the race-baiting charge—including Jesse Jackson himself. Jackson noted proudly to Essence magazine that he had, indeed, won in 1984 and 1988, and, even though he had endorsed Obama, criticized the Obama campaign, saying, “again, I think it’s some more gotcha politics.”

    The only thing that is factual is Wilentz citing the voting statistics of South Carolina (and even then he interjects some questionable analysis). Everything else is purely opinion. Do you really not understand the difference, or are you just fucking with me?

  189. 189
    The Other Steve says:

    I responded with the memo from the Obama campaign pushing the race card talking points.

    Isn’t this the same Ferraro bullshit?

    Yes yes, poor Geraldine, really we is all racist because we questioned her stupid attack on Obama.

  190. 190
    cleek says:

    My heartfelt gratitude for not corrupting the human race.

    specieism!

  191. 191
    RareSanity says:

    Brachiator Says:
    Why, the Clinton campaign, of course.

    Well you seem to have the ability to use deductive reasoning to figure out whose point I was referring to. Why not use that particular skill more often?

    Second, the article said it found a memo “…listing various instances in which it perceived the Clinton’s campaign to have deliberately played the race card in the Democratic primary.”

    Now back to my question…Do you have evidence of the Obama campaign directing its members to use these instances as “talking points” to garner more votes in South Carolina? Or, are they merely outlining the campaign tactics the Clintons were using before the primary?

    If you don’t have evidence then STFU!

  192. 192
    binzinerator says:

    myiq2xu Says:

    Peach, strawberry, apple, blueberry, pecan, even mincemeat, they’re all damned good. Because they’re pies.
    March 18th, 2008 at 2:14 pm

    Ahhh. That’s so much better.

    Thanks, Cleek!

  193. 193
    John S. says:

    I responded with the memo from the Obama campaign pushing the race card talking points.

    So, because Obama’s campaign pointed out several instances where they thought Hillary’s campaign had thrown the race card that makes them guilty of throwing those race cards?

    Reading isn’t as important of a life skill as reading comprehension. Jeebus!

  194. 194
    Chubbs says:

    What it seems many of the detractors of Senator Obama seem to miss is that those that support him don’t think he is some Messiah, but that he is actually showing and speaking like we have always wanted our politicans to do.

    I’m 38 years old, I’ve lived through Reagan and his “sound bite” speeches, I’ve lived through Clinton’s “empathy” speeches and I’ve lived through the just plain mangled speech of the current President. All of these Presidents used words to always divide us in some way. Whether it be “welfare queens”, “right wing conspiracy” or “terrorist sympathizers”, Obama doesn’t. He is special in that he is what politicians should be like, not that he is above it all.

    When you have been in the muck, sloshing through the political sewage like the past thirty years, you see someone that seems to harken back to the days when Politicans actually talked to us in full sentences and asked US to do something, not just sit and bitch about who was getting what.Presidents that until today I have only read about in history books. You sit down, breathe fully, and hope…yes, hope, that this man can actually win. If sometimes this bleeds over into fawning, it’s understandable. After waiting all my life to have someone give me enough credit that I can actually sit through a speech and not have to be spoon feed poll tested catchphrases, I’ll take the ribbing that goes along with being overly enthusiastic.

    I have no illusions that he will fix all the problems in this country or world, but I will gladly give my vote to the man who seems to realize and actually understand those problems. That will ask me and my fellow citizens to stop bitching and start fixing.

  195. 195
    Lit3Bolt says:

    This is Obama’s draw. It’s the ability to give speeches like this. I don’t know what it is that prevents other politicians from doing the same, but it’s also why he emerges from controversy after controversy smelling like a fucking rose. His eloquence and race make for a lethel combination, as he can wait for the inevitable attack on his race, then give a speech like this and appear high minded and above the fray, while his campaign does the dirty work for him. It’s political ju jitsu, and turns almost all of his weaknesses into strengths.

    Ultimately, the question to ponder is, “Is he sincere?” Many people, suspicious of any and all Kool-aid drinking (Bush and co. have ruined the brand), doubt it. I can understand geniune concerns about being an empty suit. But some just like the nice squishy feeling they get when they load their diapers and message boards with intellectual diarrhea.

    But Obama’s message of hope gives people a direction when they’ve been hopeless and directionless for so many years, embittered by outrage fatigue and shamed into slience by the chutzpah and shamelessness of the current Executive Overmaster of America. Obama offers humility, sanity, and hope, and comes acorss like he actually has a brain and knows how to use it. His speeches are not great, but that are completely different to the bile and scat that have been par for the course for years and years, and that’s what makes people pay attention (and donate!).

  196. 196
    PaulB says:

    but that he is actually showing and speaking like we have always wanted our politicans to do

    Bingo. And that’s what makes this speech stand out. Nobody thinks it’s the second coming of “I have a dream” or the Gettysburg Address. It’s an articulation of what our politicians should be saying and so often do not.

  197. 197
    PaulB says:

    Reading is a life skill. Jeebus!

    So is understanding the difference between a fact and an opinion. Might I suggest you learn what that difference is?

  198. 198
    Katherine says:

    Yeah. I don’t think Obama’s Lincoln or King or FDR. Certainly not yet, and odds are he never will be. But he’s at least *trying* to be that kind of leader, & the attempt is worthwile. It’s not just that he’s an excellent speaker, or even that he’s an excellent writer, though those certainly help. It’s that he talks to voters like they are adults, with consciences.

  199. 199
    Jay C says:

    Chubbs nails it again!

    Chubbs Says:

    What it seems many of the detractors of Senator Obama seem to miss is that those that support him don’t think he is some Messiah, but that he is actually showing and speaking like we have always wanted our politicians to do.

    Unfortunately, it also seems that when our politicians actually DO show and speak like we want them to, they end up getting shafted for it – mostly by the media. At least this year, for f*****g once, we might have the chance to elect, not the President we deserve, but one better than we deserve.

  200. 200
    Tax Analyst says:

    In reading the text it sounds like a great and much needed speech. It speaks to underlying currents that have existed and festered in the white middle-class since the late 60’s. The Republicans, starting with Nixon, have been pandering to and exploiting these themes ever since, sadly, to many electoral victories. GOP policies on the other hand, rarely resonate very well when they are explained and understood. Addressing these exploited themes head-on IS the best way to deal with them. In fact, I believe it is the ONLY effective way to deal with them. Examined in the light of day the ugliness and cynicism that has allowed the political right to exploit these themes may eventually earn the scorn and dismisal they so richly deserve.

    But, hey, I could be wrong. The voting public may still be too caught up in what’s happ’ning to Brittle-knee or whatever her name is to pick up on any such non-sound-bite type stuff.

    I’m stocking up on Cheetos while they’re still affordable, just in case.

  201. 201

    This is Obama’s draw. It’s the ability to give speeches like this.

    No. It isn’t.

    It’s his ability to build the organization he has built.

    Wondering “is he sincere” is pretending he hasn’t done anything. His campaign is one such example, assuming anyone really wants an answer to that question.
    .

  202. 202
    rawshark says:

    Chubbs Says:

    What it seems many of the detractors of Senator Obama seem to miss is that those that support him don’t think he is some Messiah, but that he is actually showing and speaking like we have always wanted our politicians to do.

    Actually its that THEY are looking for a Messiah. That’s what a republican president is (Saint Reagan?). So naturally, using projection, they assume that Obama supporters think they have found a messiah. And so they have to point out that their messiah can bowl better than yours. Or more likely that your Messiah hates bowling and the people who do it.

  203. 203

    […] Judging by the amount of commentary out there, there are many out there (who aren’t Obama loyalists) ranking this speech up there with some of the best. […]

  204. 204
    Phoebe says:

    I hate bowling because my arms are noodles and they get sore fast. But I like the sound of the bowling alley. It makes me very very happy.

    Speech was great.

  205. 205
    Brachiator says:

    Balloon Juice appears to have eaten a previous post. Revised Standard Version:

    myiq2xu Says:

    From Huffington Post:

    The Obama campaign recently prepared a detailed memo, obtained by the Huffington Post and made public elsewhere, listing various instances in which it perceived the Clinton’s campaign to have deliberately played the race card in the Democratic primary.

    So, let’s see. The Obama campaign is using the race card if they attempt to track Team Clinton’s playing of the race card. It must be backwards day for myiq.

    As for Jesse Jackson:

    Clinton’s sly trick, supposedly, was to mention Jackson and no other Democrat who had previously prevailed in South Carolina—thereby demeaning Obama’s almost certain victory as a “black” thing. But the fact remains that Clinton, who watches internal polls closely and is an astute observer, knew whereof he spoke….

    Sean Wilentz’ bizarre bashing of Obama has been widely derided for the obviously partisan hatchet job that it is. A number of people, including myself, have regretted the degree to which Wilentz trashes his own reputation in a strange attempt to curry favor with the Clintons.

    Those who follow the link to the original column will find many astute comments, including this one (12 of 773) which also anticipates Obama’s analysis of the unfortunate racializing of the campaign:

    Does Sean Wilentz have the contract to be the official Clinton biographer? To play the role for Senator Clinton that Doug Brinkley played for John Kerry? Assuredly, there must be some contract at work here to explain away this utterly misguided, one-sided, bizarre interpretation of the events of this primary cycle. There are so many problems with this article that it’s difficult to capture them all, and I sincerely hope that Cass Sunstein is preparing something to mop the floor with Wilentz as he has done previously.

    For one thing, the idea that Mark Penn wasn’t obnoxiously inserting “cocaine” into his answers about the Bill Shaheen fiasco is just goofy. The goal there was to stick the word “cocaine” in the minds of voters, and thereby conjure an image of profligacy and fecklessness in people toward Obama. That transparent move was about racializing the race, and all the Obama camp did was call them on it.

    As to the Jesse Jackson comments, the idea that Bill Clinton wasn’t trying to trivialize the South Carolina returns — and dismiss Obama’s win as nothing more than black solidarity — defies belief. As a historian, Wilentz should know that Jesse Jackson’s wins came at a time when the primary process was near its denouement, and a nominee was clearly in sight. His wins were largely about black solidarity, much more so than actually picking a candidate who might be the nominee. That simply wasn’t the case here. Obama’s win — in its overall scope, composition (25% of the white vote, BTW, not “a small fraction”) and the timing in the primary cycle — was dramatically different than Jesse Jackson’s wins. To elide that fact, and simultaneously flack for Clintons by denying their agenda of dismissal, is remarkably disingenuous. There are many other issues with this piece, and others will have an opportunity to weigh in. Suffice to say, however, that Wilentz’ article is a shoddy, tendentious piece of work that should be disregarded by all who enter.

    And note that Bill Clinton denied everything while Senator Clinton apologized for … something:

    WASHINGTON (AP) – Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton did something Wednesday night that she almost never does. She apologized. And once she started, she didn’t seem able to stop.
    The New York senator, who is in a tight race with Illinois Sen. Barack Obama for the Democratic presidential nomination, struck several sorry notes at an evening forum sponsored by the National Newspaper Publishers Association, a group of more than 200 black community newspapers across the country.

    Her biggest apology came in response to a question about comments by her husband, Bill Clinton, after the South Carolina primary, which Obama won handily. Bill Clinton said Jesse Jackson also won South Carolina when he ran for president in 1984 and 1988, a comment many viewed as belittling Obama’s success.

    “I want to put that in context. You know I am sorry if anyone was offended. It was certainly not meant in any way to be offensive,” Hillary Clinton said. “We can be proud of both Jesse Jackson and Senator Obama.”

  206. 206
    joe says:

    Yes, it’s racist of Barack Obama to notice that the Clinton campaign tried to racialize the campaign.

    He’s supposed to be what the conservatives call “color-blind,” which means “pretending not to notice when people do that shit.”

    The fun part is when they actually accuse you of racism for your stubborn refusal not to be deliberately obtuse about their race-baiting.

  207. 207
    MJ says:

    I also really respect the fact that he didn’t just throw Rev. Wright underneath the bus.

    He had no problem tossing his grandmother under the bus though.

  208. 208
    Fruitbat says:

    MJ:

    He had no problem tossing his grandmother under the bus though.

    From the speech:

    I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother – a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe.

    These people are a part of me.

    How you can read Obama saying he cannot disown his grandmother, and how she is a part of him, as “throwing her under the bus” takes some pretty inventive stunt-interpretation.

  209. 209
    Randolph Fritz says:

    Well, well, well. Finally a Democratic candidate answers the right-wing attack machine. I begin to hope. Maybe, just maybe, Obama can actually pull this off.

  210. 210
    Quiddity says:

    Hey everybody, want to opine on Wright’s remarks about “white America, the U.S. of KKK A”?

    That’s what I meant when I said Wright’s “God Damn America” is viewed by most as “God Damn White America”.

    QUESTION: Since John Cole is not in favor of Obama throwing Wright under the bus, what about Mel Gibson? Should he not throw his dad, Hutton Gibson, under the bus, even though Hutton is a holocaust denier? What’s the threshold for “bus throwing-under”?

    In case you are wondering, I much prefer Obama to Clinton. But I’m amazed, and discouraged, at the blinders many pro-Obama folks have donned. Failure to understand the political reality (i.e. Wright is very toxic) will lead to miscalculation and untimately, defeat.

  211. 211

    […] There’s much more. On the other hand, “recovering conservative” John Cole calls Obama’s speech “refreshingly candid and long overdue,” and says this – “I also really respect the fact that he didn’t just throw Rev. Wright underneath the bus.” […]

  212. 212
    Pug says:

    How you can read Obama saying he cannot disown his grandmother, and how she is a part of him, as “throwing her under the bus” takes some pretty inventive stunt-interpretation.

    It’s easy for him to say that. He’s simply parroting what everyone at Power Line and NRO is saying.

  213. 213
    Pug says:

    No, I don’t think he memorized it, what I clearly meant was that not only is he delivering the speech, but he believes what he is saying.

    One significant aspect of the speech that is getting no play whatsoever is that Barack Obama actually wrote the speech himself.

    Reagan was good at delivering a speech. Bill Clinton was good at delivering a speech. George W. can’t hardly even read a speech. I wonder how often these guys wrote their own speeches. Presidential candidate should be required by law to write important speeches themselves in the future.

  214. 214
    Neo says:

    Barack Obama has expanded our universe.

    By his example, there is now the “Obama-Wright escape” clause for those embarrassing situations where you can now say .. “I can no more likely renounce him/her than Obama could renounce Rev. Wright.

    Wow. Doesn’t that make the world a better place ?

    Or .. I would like to invoke my “Obama-Wright escape” clause rights.

    Ranks right up there with the 5th amendment.

    Example:
    Dick Cheney could no more likely renounce Haliburton than Obama could renounce Rev. Wright.

    Yeah. That feels right, doesn’t it ?

    Perhaps we should all automatically consider this repsonse the next time we consider demanding a repudiation of someone.

  215. 215
    MJ says:

    How you can read Obama saying he cannot disown his grandmother, and how she is a part of him, as “throwing her under the bus” takes some pretty inventive stunt-interpretation.

    He just told the world that his grandmother was a racist. What a wonderful grandson he is! Some how that is suppose to make the vile crap his pastor has been saying for years ok? You can’t pick your grandmother but you can pick your church.

    Obama and you MUP heads keep telling us that it’s not about experience(because he has hardly any) it’s about judgment. Well what kind of judgment does Obama have taking his kids to hear this pastors speaking nutty crap on Sundays?

    Please tell me does the MUP koolaid at least taste good?

  216. 216
    Marge says:

    Guess all it takes to be president, according to the youth and good old boys is a good speech writer. And a charming personality that lets you get the youth to think you are running for a recording contract or a movie slot. That’s the way they act when watching American Idol.

    Just like the reality shows, you people can’t even remember that he is only giving the SPEECH THAT SOMEONE ELSE WROTE FOR HIM….and boy he ought to pay his speechwriters double. And if he doesn’t steal the nod he ought to audition for one of those slots on American Idol, he doesn’t have to be able to sing…..just give a speech he’ll nail it.

  217. 217
    Sasha says:

    Barack Obama has expanded our universe.

    By his example, there is now the “Obama-Wright escape” clause for those embarrassing situations where you can now say .. “I can no more likely renounce him/her than Obama could renounce Rev. Wright.”

    . . . .

    Example:
    Dick Cheney could no more likely renounce Haliburton than Obama could renounce Rev. Wright.

    Keep working on that straw man, friend. It’s looking better and better.

  218. 218
    Sasha says:

    He just told the world that his grandmother was a racist. What a wonderful grandson he is! Some how that is suppose to make the vile crap his pastor has been saying for years ok? You can’t pick your grandmother but you can pick your church.

    Um, no he didn’t. Read the speech (I’d normally say re-read it, but I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt that you’re not being disingenous or willfully ignorant and simply have no idea what you’re talking about.)

    Obama and you MUP heads keep telling us that it’s not about experience(because he has hardly any) it’s about judgment. Well what kind of judgment does Obama have taking his kids to hear this pastors speaking nutty crap on Sundays?

    That a candidate whose pastor is someone who has said stupid things still shows better judgement than a candidate who actually has done stupid things (like vote to authorize war in Iraq or signed off on the Military Commisions Act).

    Please tell me does the MUP koolaid at least taste good?

    Obama supporters don’t drink Kool-Aid. We munch on Magical Unity Cookies. Delicious, delicious Magical Unity Cookies.

    So what flavor of Kool-Aid do you swear to, or are you just doing it for the LULZ?

  219. 219
    Sasha says:

    Guess all it takes to be president, according to the youth and good old boys is a good speech writer. And a charming personality that lets you get the youth to think you are running for a recording contract or a movie slot. That’s the way they act when watching American Idol.

    Just like the reality shows, you people can’t even remember that he is only giving the SPEECH THAT SOMEONE ELSE WROTE FOR HIM….and boy he ought to pay his speechwriters double. And if he doesn’t steal the nod he ought to audition for one of those slots on American Idol, he doesn’t have to be able to sing…..just give a speech he’ll nail it.

    You know he wrote most, if not all, of the speech himself.

    Or are you just doing it for the LULZ too?

  220. 220
    MJ says:

    Sasha the man is holding his pastor to a different standard then he did Imus. I did read his speech and he most certainly tossed his grandmother under the bus or better yet MUP galloped over her.

    LULZ?

  221. 221
    Jaiye says:

    What does GOS stand for? I apparently didn’t get that memo

  222. 222
    Sasha says:

    Sasha the man is holding his pastor to a different standard then he did Imus. I did read his speech and he most certainly tossed his grandmother under the bus or better yet MUP galloped over her.

    Wright’s rhetoric and Imus’ are not equivalent. Wright had the misfortune of actually living during Jim Crow. I can understand — if not excuse –some resentment. Imus made some stupid, racially-insensitive remarks not because bitterness built over a lifetime of real prejudice, but because he wanted to make a cheap joke. (An interesting perspective on Wright’s worldview as a Black Conservative can be read here.)

    Concerning his grandmother, all he illustrated was an unpleasant truth best described by the geniuses of Avenue Q – “Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist”. The reasonable assumption isn’t that Obama’s grandmother is a dyed-in-the-wool racist, but rather that she is a sweet woman who has decades of ingrained cultural prejudices that sometimes manifest. She may know better, but, to use a common euphemism, she’s “old fashioned” and occasionally prone into falling into old, familiar stereotypes.

    (I sincerely doubt that Obama didn’t speak to his grandmother beforehand and I suspect if she had the least objection, he would have not used her as an example.)

    LULZ?

    The phonetic pronunciation of LOLs (laugh out louds). “Doing if for the LULZ” is an expression I’ve heard used for the reason that trolls troll – they get a kick and chuckle out of the drama they foment. Your good-faith response to me indicates you are not merely trolling.

  223. 223

    […] As most people will be aware, the right wing has been Swift-boating Barack Obama for the past few weeks over controversial statements made at various times over several decades by the pastor of the black Baptist church Obama attends in Chicago. Yeserday Obama responded with a speech on the history and role of race and racial discrimination in America – a speech that will stand within the highest ranks of American political oratory, and, I am convinced, be seen in the future as the watershed moment in race relations in this country (certainly so if Obama wins the presidency; likely so even if he does not). There is almost nothing in the speech about healthcare, and only a little about the particular statements of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright that the right wing has picked out to whip up into controversy. Rightly, Obama placed the entire controversy in the larger context of racial history; many conservative commentators, angry at seeing their manufactured controversy dismissed in favor of more important and more substantive issues, responded with criticisms that Obama did not explicitly repudiate Wright and specific statements he had made, as they had demanded. Michael Gerson, in particular, focuses on Wright’s endorsement of the far-fetched conspiracy theory about AIDS that has been circulating in the black community.  Obama’s excellent and important speech on race in America did little to address his strange tolerance for the anti-Americanism of his spiritual mentor. […]

  224. 224
    Mitzi Finkelstein says:

    Many racists commenting here, taking pot-shots at this upstanding man. Cowardly racists.

  225. 225

    […] In fairness to Carville, I understand where he is coming from regarding loyalty. I saw him speak with his wife when their he said/she said-left/right shtick was popular, and he explained that the reason he stuck with Clinton even after he lied to everyone about Monica was because of loyalty. They took him from nowhere and stuck by him, so damnit, he felt he would stick by them. I respect that to some degree. It is why I respected Obama not throwing Wright under the bus. […]

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] In fairness to Carville, I understand where he is coming from regarding loyalty. I saw him speak with his wife when their he said/she said-left/right shtick was popular, and he explained that the reason he stuck with Clinton even after he lied to everyone about Monica was because of loyalty. They took him from nowhere and stuck by him, so damnit, he felt he would stick by them. I respect that to some degree. It is why I respected Obama not throwing Wright under the bus. […]

  2. […] As most people will be aware, the right wing has been Swift-boating Barack Obama for the past few weeks over controversial statements made at various times over several decades by the pastor of the black Baptist church Obama attends in Chicago. Yeserday Obama responded with a speech on the history and role of race and racial discrimination in America – a speech that will stand within the highest ranks of American political oratory, and, I am convinced, be seen in the future as the watershed moment in race relations in this country (certainly so if Obama wins the presidency; likely so even if he does not). There is almost nothing in the speech about healthcare, and only a little about the particular statements of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright that the right wing has picked out to whip up into controversy. Rightly, Obama placed the entire controversy in the larger context of racial history; many conservative commentators, angry at seeing their manufactured controversy dismissed in favor of more important and more substantive issues, responded with criticisms that Obama did not explicitly repudiate Wright and specific statements he had made, as they had demanded. Michael Gerson, in particular, focuses on Wright’s endorsement of the far-fetched conspiracy theory about AIDS that has been circulating in the black community.  Obama’s excellent and important speech on race in America did little to address his strange tolerance for the anti-Americanism of his spiritual mentor. […]

  3. […] There’s much more. On the other hand, “recovering conservative” John Cole calls Obama’s speech “refreshingly candid and long overdue,” and says this – “I also really respect the fact that he didn’t just throw Rev. Wright underneath the bus.” […]

  4. […] Judging by the amount of commentary out there, there are many out there (who aren’t Obama loyalists) ranking this speech up there with some of the best. […]

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