Tuesday, July 26, 2011
He knows how to give a speech all right
If all Barack Obama had to do was give speeches, he’d surely go down as the best president in the history of the republic.
His address last night on debt reduction negotiations was classic Obama: clear, concise, compelling and courageous. It’s speeches like last night’s that made me fall in love with the guy and shed tears of joy on the night of Tuesday, November 4, 2008, when he became the Top Dog.
He talked of cutting defense spending at the Pentagon by hundreds of billions of dollars.
He talked of asking the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to give up some of their tax breaks and special deductions.
He talked of reducing the deficit by around $4 trillion and putting us on a path to pay down our debt.
He pointed out that raising the debt ceiling was routine until he took office. “Since the 1950s, Congress has always passed it, and every president has signed it,” he said. “President Reagan did it 18 times. George W. Bush did it seven times.”
Why this fact alone doesn’t enrage the Jessie Jacksons and Al Sharptons of America is beyond me. How’s that racism workin’ for ya, conservatives?
"Would you rather reduce deficits and interest rates by raising revenue from those who are not now paying their fair share, or would you rather accept larger budget deficits, higher interest rates, and higher unemployment? And I think I know your answer."
My favorite part of the speech was when he said this:
“Most Americans, regardless of political party, don't understand how we can ask a senior citizen to pay more for her Medicare before we ask corporate jet owners and oil companies to give up tax breaks that other companies don't get. How can we ask a student to pay more for college before we ask hedge fund managers to stop paying taxes at a lower rate than their secretaries? How can we slash funding for education and clean energy before we ask people like me to give up tax breaks we don't need and didn't ask for?”
I stood up and shouted, “Yes! That’s what I’m talkin’ about, Mr. President! Get ‘em!”
Then I remembered it’s Barack Obama we’re talking about and I sat back down. The guy gives great speeches. Then he goes back to his every day capitulating and equivocating and justifying and abandoning the concepts and principles on which he campaigned and for which I thought he stood.
I receive a fair amount of crap from Obama supporters whenever I post anything critical of the POTUS in Facebook. One guy in particular is so over-the-top that I think there’s probably an Alter to Obama in his basement somewhere where he burns incense, lights candles, kneels and chants, “Hope! Change! Yes, we can!” while gazing lovingly at enlarged photos of the 44th president. It’s sad that some on the left are as irresponsible and narrow-minded as conservatives when they come across someone who strays from the talking points. Unfortunately, Republicans aren’t the only ones who try to marginalize the messenger and insult and silence anyone with whom they disagree.
Thinking for yourself apparently scares those who can’t or won’t.
I watched the speech with my 11-year-old, Nikita, who does think for herself and in fact has a brain much larger than mine was at her age. After John Boehner’s sad excuse for a Republican response was finished, I asked her what she thought. She said she thought Boehner was wrong about a “spending binge,” Obama’s a better speaker and politician, and she’s glad that John McCain isn’t the president.
There is that, I guess.