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Tag: Rhetoric


AP/Carolyn Kaster

Obama and the Johnson Legacy: Recollecting the Great Society

President Obama appeared in Austin, Texas, on Thursday night to deliver that rarest of speeches: a tribute to a former president, Lyndon Baines Johnson, whose administration still remains in controversy.

Posted on Apr 11, 2014 READ MORE



AP/Arkansas Secretary of State, Lori McElroy

How Many Controversial Comments Can Arkansas Republicans Make in One Week?

From defending slavery to advocating for the killing of disobedient children, there’s been a lot of crazy talk by some GOP politicians in the state of Arkansas recently.

Posted on Oct 11, 2012 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Santorum Staffer Links Obama, Islam Via ‘Slip’

Only she knows for sure, but Rick Santorum’s spokeswoman Alice Stewart claims she misspoke when she referred to President Obama’s “radical Islamic policies” on MSNBC when she really meant to say “radical environmental policies.”

Posted on Feb 20, 2012 READ MORE



Doubts About Eloquence

“The desire to be inspired,” William F. Gavin writes in “Speechwright,” “to be uplifted, to be made to feel deeply, to be swept away, and thrilled is the mark of jaded citizens who have forgotten that the major goal of political rhetoric should be to make good arguments, clearly and honestly.”

Posted on Dec 30, 2011 READ MORE


Why ‘False Choices’ Still Matter

The idea that “false choices” are distorting our politics is under attack. I want to defend the concept for both substantive and personal reasons.

Posted on Apr 26, 2011 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons

Ryan to Respond to State of the Union

Responding to the State of the Union is an odd honor. You become the face of the opposition for 10 minutes but you have to immediately follow extraordinary rhetoricians at their chosen sport. House Budget Committee Chairperson Paul Ryan gets the job this year.

Posted on Jan 21, 2011 READ MORE


Glenn Beck Has a Point

Excuse us while we hold back the dry heave and acknowledge that buried in this obnoxious, childish rant of Glenn Beck’s, there’s a valid point lurking.

Posted on Jan 20, 2011 READ MORE


Palin’s Egocentric Umbrage

In the spirit of civil discourse, I’d like to humbly suggest that Sarah Palin please consider being quiet for a while. Perhaps a great while.

Posted on Jan 18, 2011 READ MORE


Health Care and the New Civility

President Obama’s call for “a more civil and honest public discourse” will get its first test much sooner than we expected.

Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE


Fox News Reports No Link Between Matches, Gasoline and Fire

“Gasoline and matches don’t start fires,” said Fox host Glenn Beck. “People start fires.” Mr. Beck went on to say that there was no link between “oxygen, hydrogen and water.”

Posted on Jan 17, 2011 READ MORE


Words That Don’t Heal

Blood libel is a term with a specific and terrible history. It refers to the scurrilous accusation that Jews kidnapped and murdered Christian children to use their blood to prepare Passover matzo.

Posted on Jan 12, 2011 READ MORE



vimeo.com

What Is the Meaning of This ‘Blood Libel’?

Wouldn’t you know it—the Sarah Palin Catchphrase Generator clicked, whirred and spat out another viscerally tinged and menacing two-word combination to righteously apply to her political opponents. This week’s winner: “blood libel.” But what does it mean?

Posted on Jan 12, 2011 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / U.S. Congress

Right Pushes Back About Rhetoric’s Role in Arizona Shooting

Is it wrong to make connections between the charged political climate in the U.S., stoked by divisive rhetoric, and the deadly shooting last weekend in Arizona? Some right-leaning politicians and pundits are saying so.

Posted on Jan 11, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Chris Carlson

The Arizona Shooting, as Seen From Europe

The Christian Science Monitor took a brief survey Monday of the coverage of the Gabrielle Giffords shooting from across the Atlantic, browsing British, French, German and Dutch publications to see how the violence and its aftermath registered from their points of view.

Posted on Jan 10, 2011 READ MORE


Petraeus
U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Bradley A. Lail

You Say Militant, I Say Terrorist

What’s in a name? Well, quite a bit, according to the newly crowned military commander in Afghanistan, Gen. David Petraeus, as he pushes to designate a group of militants in Pakistan as “terrorists.”

Posted on Jul 14, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / nycmayorsoffice, Edward Reed

Obama Channels Bush in Speech on Immigration

President Obama’s immigration speech on Thursday, according to a former speechwriter for George W. Bush, bore an extraordinary similarity to the one delivered by his predecessor back in 2006.

Posted on Jul 4, 2010 READ MORE


health care protest
AP / Hans Pennink

The Rhetoric of Health Care Misinformation

What is it about chain e-mails that makes potentially reasonable people who might even be wary of believing everything they read—at least when it comes to stories generated by media outlets—so gullible and so willing to latch on to hyperbolic distortions and ideologically driven misinformation campaigns?

Posted on Aug 10, 2009 READ MORE


Thomas Paine
Portrait by Auguste Millière

The Age of Paine

“That filthy little atheist,” as Thomas Paine was called by Theodore Roosevelt, has few monuments dedicated to his memory. Building a bronze and marble monument to Paine will never revive the republic, but his words still carry an electric current of freedom. His intellectual and political energy is always available for rediscovery.

Posted on Jul 3, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Bebeto Matthews

The Truth Alone Will Not Set You Free

The modern world, as Kafka predicted, has become a world where lies become true. And facts alone will be powerless to thwart the mendacity spun out through billions of dollars in corporate advertising, lobbying and control of traditional sources of information. The lines between artists, social activists and journalists have to be erased.

Posted on Jun 29, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / dsearis

R.I.P. Offshore Drilling Ban

Congressional Democrats seemed to have turned in their spine—yet again—Tuesday when they announced they would allow the 26-year-old ban on offshore drilling to expire, a resounding sellout to the rhetoric of the McCain campaign and a reactionary move aimed at accommodating the crisis-ridden financial markets.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


David McKiernan
arcent.army.mil

‘Surge’ Rhetoric Not Universal

Despite criticisms of the efficacy of the “surge” in Iraq, a U.S. commander in Afghanistan has dared to say that a planned “surge” in Afghanistan would in fact not help U.S. interests in the country. The commander did make sure not to completely deweaponize the Bush administration’s rhetoric, suggesting instead that a different type of surge is needed.

Posted on Aug 8, 2008 READ MORE


Mission_Accomplished
From ThinkProgress.com

Bush’s Regret

President Bush says he is now reconsidering the swaggering cowboy image that he adopted early on in his presidency. “I think that in retrospect I could have used a different tone, a different rhetoric,” he tells the U.K.‘s Times Online as his time in office ticks out.

Posted on Jun 10, 2008 READ MORE


Bush and Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart: ‘Mission Described’

The “Daily Show” host examines the president’s bizarre speaking style and the rhetorical train wreck that stems from his love affair with self-narration.

Posted on Oct 10, 2007 READ MORE


An Absurd Debate

One of the most predictable arguments is also one of the most useless: that politics come down to a choice between being for “big government” or “small government.” Those catchphrases explain remarkably little about what politicians do, or what voters want.

Posted on Jul 31, 2007 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT

War Made Easy

Check out the trailer for “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death,” the chilling outcome of acclaimed author and columnist Norman Solomon’s collaboration with the Media Education Foundation. (Above, Bill O’Reilly, one of those in the movie.) The documentary is based on Solomon’s book of the same name and uses archival footage to map the rhetoric of war since the 1960s.

Posted on Jul 11, 2007 READ MORE


A Study in the Rhetoric of George W. Bush

In his commencement speech to the class of 2007 at UC Berkeley’s Department of Rhetoric, author Mark Danner gives the new graduates a crash course in Bushian rhetoric (not quite on par with Aristotle’s celebrated canon) and dubs Bush the “first Rhetoric-Major President.”  (Note:  Article courtesy of Tom Engelhardt at TomDispatch.com.)

Posted on Jun 1, 2007 READ MORE


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