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Past Imperfect

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Tag: Speech


White House / Pete Souza

The Obscenity of War

President Barack Obama has just returned from his first trip as commander in chief to Afghanistan. The U.S.-led invasion and occupation of that country are now in their ninth year, amid increasing comparisons to Vietnam.

Posted on Mar 30, 2010 READ MORE


There Are Crazies on One Side

It is disingenuous for mainstream purveyors of incendiary far-right rhetoric to dismiss groups such as the Hutaree militia by saying that there are “crazies on both sides.” This simply is not true.

Posted on Mar 29, 2010 READ MORE


David Frum
American Enterprise Institute

Conservative Fired for Speaking Truth to Limbaugh?

The Washington Post, among others, is reporting rather matter-of-factly that conservative commentator David Frum (who, as a Bush speechwriter, coined “axis of evil”) has been fired by the American Enterprise Institute for criticizing the Republican approach to the health care fight. (continued)

Posted on Mar 25, 2010 READ MORE


Yes We Can / Hell No You Can’t

It was only a matter of time before someone worked something magical out of John Boehner’s health care vote speech.

Posted on Mar 24, 2010 READ MORE


Take Two Doses of Caution and Call Me in 2014

No one really knows how such sweeping changes to the health care system are going to play out.

Posted on Mar 24, 2010 READ MORE


Obama: ‘This Government Still Works’

The president, speaking after the passage of health care reform, said, “We proved that we are still a people capable of doing big things.”

Posted on Mar 21, 2010 READ MORE


Boehner’s ‘Hell No’ Speech

The House minority leader got a bit hot and bothered just before the House vote approving the Senate’s version of health care reform, repeatedly dropping H-E-double hockey sticks. Speaker Nancy Pelosi spoke instead to history.

Posted on Mar 21, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Wade Payne

The Americans Who Can’t Wait for a Better Bill

The lines at health care centers in working class communities around the country start forming when other Americans are going to bed, and they’re getting longer.

Posted on Mar 16, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Muhammed Muheisen

Israel Crackdown Puts Liberal Jews on the Spot

The Israeli government, its brutal war crimes in Gaza exposed in detail in the U.N. report by Justice Richard Goldstone, has implemented a series of draconian measures to silence and discredit dissidents, leading intellectuals and human rights organizations inside and outside Israel.

Posted on Mar 15, 2010 READ MORE


Dewey Beats Truman—Again?

Could Prime Minister Gordon Brown pull off the biggest political upset since 1948? Britain’s Conservatives are ascendant, but there’s reason for Brown to hope.

Posted on Mar 14, 2010 READ MORE


John Roberts
White House / Pete Souza

Chief Whiner

The chief justice is a big crybaby. To listen to John Roberts, you’d think that mobs of pitchfork-waving Democrats had accosted a handful of trembling justices.

Posted on Mar 11, 2010 READ MORE


Glenn Beck’s Terrorist Rant

Speaking to the Conservative CPAC conference, Glenn Beck expressed sympathy for the anti-tax terrorist kamikaze pilot and called for the eradication of progressivism. The mob cheered.

Posted on Feb 25, 2010 READ MORE


U.S. Allies in Europe Begin to Pull Back

The U.S. devotes large sums of money to subsidizing the participation in Afghanistan of small NATO countries and publicizing the affair as a true coalition operation, but NATO-nation political and public support for the war is faint and grudging because few believe the mission is realistic.

Posted on Feb 23, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Elise Amendola

Boycott FedEx

Now that unions have been broken, rapacious corporations like FedEx and toadies in Congress and the White House are turning workers into serfs.

Posted on Feb 22, 2010 READ MORE


Dick Cheney
AP / Manuel Balce Ceneta

Run, Cheney, Run!

With cheers urging Dick Cheney to run for president, the Republican spokesman talked at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, pontificating about the party’s chances in 2010 and even 2012, claiming that “President Obama is going to be a one-term president.”

Posted on Feb 19, 2010 READ MORE


A GOP Star Is Born

If you are asking, as former President George W. Bush did jokingly the other day, “Who the hell is Marco Rubio?” you probably won’t be for long.

Posted on Feb 18, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

The End of Obama’s Vision of a Nuke-Free World

Fear of a nuclear Iran has generated irrational policies that will only hasten such an outcome. Instead of listening to his own words, the president fell for that old lure, a great power with great bombs that tells others what to do.

Posted on Feb 16, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Calling Dr. Clinton

When word went out that Bill Clinton was hospitalized, the prospect that he was in danger made me wish that President Obama had spent more time learning lessons that only Clinton can teach.

Posted on Feb 14, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / SpecialKRB

The Tea Party Queen

The headlines scream as if Godzilla were rising from the icy depths of the Potomac: “Sarah Palin: Threat or Menace?”

Posted on Feb 11, 2010 READ MORE


The Origins of Tea Party Radicalism

The ferocity of the tea party movement’s opposition to President Obama is mystifying to political progressives. Most of the left simply doesn’t see the current occupant of the White House as especially liberal, let alone “socialist.”

Posted on Feb 10, 2010 READ MORE


Sarah Palin Speaks at the Goofball Convention (Raw Video)

This is—no joke—how Sarah Palin began her speech to the tea partiers: “I am so proud to be an American. Thank you so much for being here tonight. Do you love your freedom?” She then thanked the troops for her freedom, repeated that she was proud to be an American and said, “Happy birthday, Ronald Reagan!”

Posted on Feb 8, 2010 READ MORE


The GOP’s Dubious Populism

The most revealing moments in President Obama’s State of the Union address were not in his remarks, but the reaction to them by those listening on the Republican side of the aisle.

Posted on Feb 3, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

The Hidden Issue of 2010

I asked Vice President Joe Biden if we will hear more on the America-as-No.-1 theme. What followed was a torrent, in red, white and blue.

Posted on Feb 3, 2010 READ MORE


Thank You, Justice Alito

Justice Samuel Alito’s inability to restrain himself during the State of the Union address brought to wide attention a truth that too many have tried to ignore: The Supreme Court is now dominated by a highly politicized conservative majority intent on working its will.

Posted on Jan 31, 2010 READ MORE


Outsider in Chief

President Obama’s first State of the Union address didn’t signal a political shift to the left or the right. It sounded more like a shrewd attempt to move from the inside to the outside.

Posted on Jan 28, 2010 READ MORE


State of the Union Math Test

There was an unexpected poignancy to the moment Wednesday evening, as President Obama sought to pass a political math test by solving several simultaneous equations.

Posted on Jan 28, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama’s First State of the Union—Full Remarks

It was his third address to a joint session of Congress in less than a year, and it had all the usual gestures toward bipartisanship, but Barack Obama’s big speech was not without sizzle. The president shamed Republicans for obstructing, Democrats for giving up and the Supreme Court for auctioning off our democracy.

Posted on Jan 27, 2010 READ MORE


Barack Obama

Watch the State of the Union Live—Right Here

No need to leave your computer, you can get a live feed of Barack Obama’s first official State of the Union address right here.

Posted on Jan 27, 2010 READ MORE


The Urgency of a Teddy Roosevelt Moment

The only proper response to the distortion of our political system by ideologically driven justices is a popular revolt of a sort deeply rooted in the American political tradition.

Posted on Jan 24, 2010 READ MORE



Democracy in America Is a Useful Fiction

Corporate forces, long before the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, carried out a coup d’état in slow motion. The coup is over. We lost.

Posted on Jan 24, 2010 READ MORE



Life After Massachusetts Edition

After the jump: A comprehensive roundup of why the Democrats suck, the all-white basketball league and how classical music can be used as punishment for schoolchildren.

Posted on Jan 22, 2010 READ MORE


Reid’s Motive Does Matter

If the Senate majority leader’s private remarks about the skin tone and speaking style of Barack Obama was offensive, the Republican crusade to oust him from his leadership position is worse.

Posted on Jan 14, 2010 READ MORE


Fighting Over the Squandered Decade

I’m afraid that the past 10 years will be seen as a time when the United States badly lost its way by using our military power carelessly and pursuing domestic policies that constrained our options for the future.

Posted on Dec 31, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Mary Altaffer

One Day We’ll All Be Terrorists

The gravest threat we face is not from Islamic extremists, but the codification of draconian procedures that deny Americans basic civil liberties and due process.

Posted on Dec 28, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Richard.Fisher

We’re Here, We’re Severe, Get Used to It

China has plenty of Prada and an economy to match, but don’t think Beijing has gone soft on “stability preservation.” A speech published by state media shortly after a prominent dissident was thrown in the can encourages security forces to “Strike hard against hostile forces at home and abroad.”

Posted on Dec 27, 2009 READ MORE



Collage from fly navy and soundfromwayout

Nader’s Utopia: The World According to Ralph

Ralph Nader describes his new book as a “practical utopia.” His quixotic answer to Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged,” it is a window into the world the consumer advocate and independent presidential candidate wishes he could create.

Posted on Dec 21, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Tech. Sgt. Efren Lopez

The Fallacy of Good vs. Evil in Afghanistan

Both Barack Obama and George W. Bush were saying in different ways that we Americans are good and Taliban or jihadists are bad. But the reason we are good is that we are we, and we are justified in punishing them because they are they.

Posted on Dec 17, 2009 READ MORE



Collage: Gravel photo from Flickr / Center for American Progress Action Fund

Gravel’s Lament: Fighting Another Dumb War

Few voices in American politics have been as consistent, as reasoned and as moral as his, which is one reason why Mike Gravel, on a chilly December morning, is in front of the White House, not inside it.

Posted on Dec 13, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Squaring Idealism and Realism

Europeans are coming to terms with the fact that President Barack Obama is not a miracle worker, and with the reality that everything he does is not magic.

Posted on Dec 13, 2009 READ MORE



Larry’s List: All-You-Can-Eat Weekend Wrap-Up

What have you been doing all weekend? If the answer isn’t reading about Fox’s goofy polls, the man who hid 44 lizards in his pants and great moments in Orwellandia, hop on past the jump for the weekend list and catch up.

Posted on Dec 13, 2009 READ MORE


Kucinich, Hedges, Nader Rally at the White House

A who’s who of opponents of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan spoke at a rally at Lafayette Park, across the street from the White House, on Saturday. Chris Hedges, Ralph Nader, Rep. Dennis Kucinich and more after the jump.

Posted on Dec 13, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

What Obama Really Thinks About the Surge

The president believes his Afghanistan surge will most likely create the conditions to bring the greatest number of U.S. troops home at the earliest possible date, a senior official said.

Posted on Dec 10, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Master Sgt. Scott Reed

Our Murderers in the Sky

Key to Barack Obama’s surge is his expansion of targeted assassinations taking place under the guise of unmanned aerial drones operating in the Af-Pak region.

Posted on Dec 10, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama’s Peace Prize Speech

Accepting his Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo on Thursday, President Barack Obama acknowledged the controversy of his award, as “the Commander-in-Chief of the military of a nation in the midst of two wars.” He spoke of one of those wars, Afghanistan, in terms of self-defense and shared his thoughts on the concept of “just war.” (full remarks inside)

Posted on Dec 10, 2009 READ MORE


Obama Peace Prize

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Posted on Dec 10, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Bjorn Sigurdson

Peace Through War

President Barack Obama struggled to balance “man of peace” with “man of war” in his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, in which he demanded we uphold moral standards in “necessary” war and insisted that war could bring peace.

Posted on Dec 10, 2009 READ MORE


‘The Great Global Security Underwriter’ Will Pay a High Price

Why, if the electorate is less than enthusiastic about providing global underwriting, and would like to see others provide their own insurance, does Washington persist in its role?

Posted on Dec 8, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

The Health Care Race to Christmas

President Obama’s speech on Afghanistan and his subsequent jobs summit underscored why it’s essential to get a health care bill done quickly.

Posted on Dec 6, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Lawrence Jackson

Obama’s Surge in Afghanistan Hardly a Surprise

There was much disappointment on Tuesday night about Barack Obama’s decision to widen the war in Afghanistan, but there can have been no real surprise.

Posted on Dec 3, 2009 READ MORE


Obama’s Goldilocks Strategy

Obama’s surge in Afghanistan is a political loser, but in the short term he’ll get what he wants.

Posted on Dec 2, 2009 READ MORE


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