Rate His Speech

I thought the numbers would have been stronger; I suspect Obama has become his own victim in that our expectations are too high. We assume that everything he touches will turn to gold; I fear this might hunt him more than he realizes. The speech was very good and it offered a sense of hope. I love how he called on “ALL” types of people to unify and make this nation better. His best line, if I may paraphrase some here, indicated that societies need to turn against he evils of those who look to destroy and not to build.

Q. The nation is “ready to lead once more,” the president said in his history-making inauguration address. How impressed were you?

I thought his speech was excellent and inspirational. 48%
I thought his speech was good, not great. 13%
I thought his speech was just so-so. 8%
I was not at all impressed with his speech. 25%
I didn’t watch / No opinion. 6%

77311 votes

Advertisements

54 thoughts on “Rate His Speech

  1. Yeah, I am a bit sympathetic towards the 25% because nothing that he really said was all that inspirational or moving. Nobody who didn’t have a chip on their shoulder was really moved by his speech…..at least as far as I could tell.

  2. This data is quite surprising. But, there are still many bitter Republicans out there who have decided to spend all of their time complaining instead of supporting their President. Anyway, I would definitely go with “I thought his speech was excellent and inspirational.”

  3. Carson,

    Sorry that I missed your poll. I might have kicked it up to 49%. The speech was deceptively simple, but heard or read carefully offered a clear and substantive change in governing philosophy.

    For example,
    a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous

    I’ve read through the speech half a dozen times since listening yesterday morning. It gets better with each reading.

    The short, crisp sentences reflect what some have called the “dumbing down” of American political discourse because they judge such things by the Frye Readability scale. But the ideas are not so simple. Rather, Obama’s speech is like John’s Gospel: simple, ordinary language; profound and rich ideas. It was a masterpiece. I hope his administration invests every phrase with the meaning it connotes.

  4. His speech is only so-so if you’re unable to read between the lines, listen to voice inflection and pay attention to who was sitting just behind him on the platform. Just like James, I find more to love about every time I read through it. His comments about being ready to lead again struck a cord with me and with my foreign friends. Of course, the excitement of the day was dampened a bit by lunch with a small herd of slightly bitter Republicans, but I digress. Good luck with your students Carson. There’s not much worse than a person who spouts out only the talking points that his parents have given him.

  5. Sweeney: Political Scientist that study political socialization contend that parents represent our ideological makeup; still, I hate it when people espouse a view then defend it as their own. I do need much luck.

  6. Well, by that token I should be largely Republican due to my mother’s status as a conservative, not to mention the fact that most of my extended family on both sides is made up of conservatives. Thankfully though, I’ve learned to read and it has gone well for me.

  7. I dont think this was meant to be a policy specific speech. I think he did well. He’s never really been too specific about what he wants to do. I would like to see a state of the union speech soon.

  8. Coming from a very Conservative individual, I think his speech was good. It was yypical. Had a bunch of cliches in there and it sounded more or less like a campaign speech (which, you can’t really fault since the only thing Obama has really done is run for office). It was a good speech. Not great but good.

    I liked what he said about defeating our enemies. I didn’t like how he pretty much said Govco is the cure all.

  9. Carson – everyone seemed so depressed yesterday on campus. It was like a funeral. The most disheartening thing I heard in the hallway: “Well, we have a black president now – say bye to all of your parents’ money!” I do agree, there was a sense of optimism under Clinton. As James Carville recently said, “”What didn’t you like about the Clinton years? The peace or the prosperity?”

    Roland – “the only thing Obama has really done is run for office.” That is false.

  10. I watched it and thought it was great. I think you’re right, Carson, he’s a victim of his own success. We now expect him to deliver the Gettysburg Address every time he walks on stage. But, it was a solid speech, and very moving to both me and my girlfriend.

  11. I thought Obama’s speech was very good. I liked that it was more of a call to action speech than a celebration.

    I am a conservative and did not support Obama during the election. However, now that he is our president, I will put all my support behind him. Any Republican who doesn’t is just being immature and needs to realize that we can’t have unity in our country if they act that way.

    Dillon-I was not depressed yesterday. I was actually pretty excited to see Obama take his oath and hear his speech.

    Mr. Carson and kristisweeney-I don’t just “spout out only the talking points that my parents have given me” or “espouse a view then defend it as my own.” Even though I am a conservative and my parents are also, I come up with my own views and ideas and don’t just use what my parents say.

  12. Dillon, people are depressed because many of those who voted for him thought that by 12:30pm everything would magically be better. They would now have gas for their car and their mortgage would be paid, they would have a great job and a flat screen TV. I liken it to many of the Jews of the first century who were crushed when they found out that Jesus was not going to take up arms against Rome.

  13. “…there are still many bitter Republicans out there who have decided to spend all of their time complaining instead of supporting their President.”

    If true, that is pretty sad considering how much warm support Bush received from Democrats during his terms in office.

    I wish Obama the best of luck. His speech was quite good, but I also am beginning to wonder if the expectations are getting out of hand. A couple of topics ago, there was a discussion of whether Lincoln had been made into a mythological figure. Here we have a situation where the media and a campaign have almost achieved the same thing with this new President… before the man serves a day on the job!

    Electing an African American to the Oval Office is a fantastic milestone for the country. Electing Barack Obama the man to the Oval Office comes with all the highs and lows of any other Presidency. “We are the change we have been waiting for” was an odd campaign sandwich of ego and ambiguity. This inaugural speech was another serving of that, suggesting that now we can finally get past all the partisan bickering and world jealousy now that Obama has arrived. My point is the guy can be a fine present without people making him out to be a political horse whisperer.

    Every inaugural speech wants to inspire the country as we start a new administration, and I think this one did a fine job. Godspeed, Mr. President.

  14. Chris: “I am a conservative and did not support Obama during the election. However, now that he is our president, I will put all my support behind him. Any Republican who doesn’t is just being immature and needs to realize that we can’t have unity in our country if they act that way.”

    Boy, I sure don’t. I hope he fails big time. Sure, I want him to succeed if he sticks to protecting our country from enemies both foreign and domestic and if he protects and supports the Consitution but, otherwise, no. For one thing, I don’t want socialism. For another, I want to keep more of my money.

    I love the 2nd part of your statement abouit being immature. Remember, George W. Bush came in to office trying to unite and stop the paritisanship. He reached across the aisle..and got slapped and kicked and spat upon. Why is it that only Conservatives have to stop being partisan and immature?

  15. I thought he was inspirational and intellectual without making his rhetoric murky for people. I am also struck by the amount of weight you have lost. And that photo of you running–how did you used to keep this from us? Was I supposed to read EVERY post?

    Love.

  16. Chris – I was not talking about you. I realize that you develop your own opinions, and I respect that. And I really appreciate that you have decided to support our President, even though you may not agree with him on most issues.

    Roland – “Dillon, people are depressed because many of those who voted for him thought that by 12:30pm everything would magically be better. They would now have gas for their car and their mortgage would be paid, they would have a great job and a flat screen TV. I liken it to many of the Jews of the first century who were crushed when they found out that Jesus was not going to take up arms against Rome.”

    Do you have any evidence to support this ridiculous claim? Sorry, but no one was expecting this. You are making it sound like EVERYONE who supported/supports President Obama is stupid and/or naive, and this is not the case. No one is expecting a UPS truck to deliver a flat screen TV to their front door with a note attached saying “Love, President Obama.”

    And for the record – I was too young to understand what was going on during Bush’s firs term. But, many people, including my parents, TRIED to support and like the guy. But let’s face it – what has he accomplished that has been beneficial to our country? Two wars? A rise in unemployment? An economic failure as a result of poor oversight? Richer rich people and poorer poor people? The Patriot Act? Abandoning of a post-Katrina New Orleans?

  17. Dillon- You’ve now cued the conservatives to their rallying cry about the economy, “But the Clinton administration made us give mortgages to people. We were forced and that’s what forced the economy to flounder.” That may be true, but many of them seem to fail to realize that they had control of both the presidency and Congress for six years and did nothing to stop it.

  18. Roland-When I said I’d support him, I did not mean that I would support his views. I definitely do not want socialism either. What I meant is pretty much what you said in your post about upholding the Constitution and defending our country. As for the second part, do you want to sink to the level of the liberal-biased media? If you do sink to that level, then you’re just as bad as them. Did you like what the media did to Bush and the rest of the Republicans. You didn’t, so why would you sink to their level? Be the better man…or political party!

    Mr. Carson-Thank you. I know that a majority of students are like that, but I wanted to make the point that there are some who make their views independent of what their parents think.

  19. I actually enjoyed his speech. It wasn’t as good as his speech at the DNC, but it was good. Good, but not great would have been my vote.

  20. BTW Dillon, there were two terrorist attacks on the U.S. during the Clinton administration and he did absolutely nothing. If he had handled those attacks properly chances are that 9-11 wouldn’t have happened. Bush took action, Clinton hid in his office instead of taking care of business. He, like most Democrats would do, decided that protecting us wasn’t as important as “peace”, and that is my main quarrel with Clinton.

  21. The attack on the USS Cole, perhaps? An attack on a military target BY terrorists.

    While Clinton may not have been aggressive enough (by some accounts he was offered Bin Laden on a platter and passed on the offer), in fairness the country was not in a mind frame to have a full-blown war against these seemingly small groups of terrorists.

    It is frustrating to see people forget the environment and intelligence estimates leading up to the second invasion of Iraq, choosing to judge the war week-by-week. Likewise, in the year 2000 public opinion may have called “overkill” at launching warheads at (seemingly) small groups in the desert. Bush is raked for acting on iffy intelligence, and Clinton is raked for not acting enough on iffy intelligence. Tough job, the Presidency.

    To their credit and/or discredit (a whole other debate!) it took a disaster on the scale of 9/11 to convince the West to “release the hounds”.

    Obama’s inaugural speech indicated the hope that most situations could be solved via diplomacy. I hope he’s right, but I also hope he’s willing to be aggressive should the need arise. Despots act when they smell weakness. With a cheeky Russia and a bomb-building Iran, Obama is going to need to negotiate these waters carefully. An interesting difference between this administration and the last one is that if Obama were to respond with force, the other political party would line up behind him.

  22. Kristi – that is my point – depending on how you define terrorism, there were WAY more than two terrorist attacks during the Clinton years. And the Bush years for that matter.

    Nonetheless, Clinton could not have prevented 9/11. Going into other countries, blowing stuff up, and killing innocent people does not help to prevent terrorism.

  23. How do you propose preventing terrorism? Maybe sitting down and having a heart to heart with them? Maybe not supporting Israel? Maybe tying to figure out why they hate us so much? Maybe we just sit around and do nothing so we look nice and weak and a bunch of wimps and, oh, wait..that’s what Clinton did.

  24. Political and economic instability breed terrorism. How about conquering those issues? It’s more cost effective too – I would prefer my tax dollars to be spent feeding people instead of killing them.

  25. Obviously it has Dillon since there have been zero Al Qaeda attacks on America since Bush stepped up to the plate and took down Saddam, who allowed Al Qaeda to take refuge in Iraq, and even made financial contributions.

    You seem to think that war is nothing but guns, ammo, explosions, and death. It’s not. War is purpose driven. Our goal in going to Iraq was to prevent future attacks by Al Qaeda, and we have had none. During Clinton’s administration Al Qaeda attacked our country, he did NOTHING to prevent further attacks, and we were attacked again on 9-11.

    However, I think we need to shift our focus away from Iraq right now and focus on Afghanistan. We liberated Iraq, now we need to let them fend for themselves. “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” We have taught them how to fish and we even gave them a pole. Now, if they fail it is on their hands.

    People seem to overlook the fact that women in Iraq can now vote, more kids can go to school, and people don’t have to worry about being executed for speaking out against their government. Some civilians were killed yes, but that is because terrorists would use them as shields, execute them, and hold hostages in places they know would be targeted. Civilian deaths were more often than not inflicted by our enemies.

    We did address those problems Dillon(in Iraq at least) , and yet terrorism persists. Terrorism over in the middle east is committed by Muslims claiming Jihad. And what tax dollars? Neither of us pay taxes yet.

  26. I will admit, this is a bit of a soap box speech but I would greatly appreciate it if you would take the time to read it before bashing me.

    Dillon – Seeing as yours was the only comment after my first one this morning, I am supposing that it was intended as a jab about the “chip on the shoulder” comment. I’m cool with that, but I must remind you that I have showed full support of our new president on both this site and on thegrayghost. I would take a bullet for him if need be because he is the figurehead of an entire nation. That doesn’t mean that I must agree with his policies or qualifications for the job. He is a good orator, but rather lousy at getting too deeply into what he really wants to do with the presidency that is actually possible. I am waiting to see if he is more clear and reasonable when he gives his state of the union address later in the year.

    I must agree with Chris and Rowland on the subject of showing support for our new president though. I hardly think that singing “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye” and booing him as he walked out on stage is in any way respectful to a man who has served the past eight years protecting the interests of millions of ungrateful people. He could have been a people-pleaser and done what the rest of the nation wanted him to do (possibly at the cost of several thousand lives) but he never gave in. We will never know the legacy of the Bush Presidency until years from now and I do believe that history will lend a hand in setting the record straight.

    Now I would like to set a couple of records straight that have been grossly taken out of context.

    First off,

    Dillon, you stated, ”What didn’t you like about the Clinton years? The peace or the prosperity?”

    I wouldn’t really call what happened during the Clinton presidency a true peace or even prosperous and I will give a few reasons why. First off, his presidency was wrought with scandals. No, I am not only referring to Lewinsky because everyone has heard of that one. The media seems to have forgotten Whitewater, a curious little real estate incident involving your beloved president. Sure, he tried to cover it up, but he didn’t do anything to his credibility about the incident when he pardoned the four people who had remained loyal to him throughout the ordeal and who had vouched for his innocence. It was also a bit fishy to officially pardon over 140 pardons in his last day in office isn’t it.

    I would also call the attack orchestrated by the Clinton Administration on the Al-Shifa Pharmaceutical plant enormous evidence of liberal media bias. Every leftist that I have met over the past couple of years has espoused the idea that we went in to Iraq without substantial evidence that any WMD material was there, but they forget that Clinton did the same thing. Under the assumption that the Al-Shifa Pharmaceutical was linked with Osama Bin-Laden and Al-Qaeda and was producing VX nerve gas, Clinton ordered an immediate bombardment of the complex which quite possibly led to the deaths of millions of people who now no longer had access to anti-malaria drugs and other similar vaccinations. Directly after the strike the Sudanese government demanded that the Security Council conduct an investigation of the site to determine if it had been used to produce chemical weapons or precursors. Such an investigation was from the start opposed by the US. Nor has USA ever let an independent laboratory analyze the sample allegedly containing EMPTA. Michael Barletta concludes that there is no evidence the al-Shifa factory was ever involved in production of chemical weapons, and it is known that many of the initial US allegations were wrong. The Dem’s really have something to complain about huh?

    This brings up two more interesting points that I would like to point out. First off, the invasion of Iraq was completely legitimate. At the end of the First Gulf War, the United Nations entered into an agreement with Saddam Hussein that stated that we would be allowed to enter Iraq at will in order to ensure that there were no Weapons of Mass destruction being produced. Well, right before we invaded, Saddam had just refused to allow us to enter for our routine search of their land. We gave them every opportunity to comply but the not-so-kindly told us to pretty much shove-it. And what has happened since we’ve been in Iraq? Well, no mass killings like that of the Kurds (about 50,000 – 100,000 people) has happened since and the GDP of Iraq has risen by %30. Not to mention, the United States did find about 2200 pounds of Uranium which could have been turned into bomb making material had Israel not pitched in and destroyed their reactors a few months prior. Just saying.

    The second point is, Clinton could fully have prevented the attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001. In 1993, the first World Trade Center bombing killed six people. In 1998, the bombing of two U.S. embassies in Africa killed 224. A member of the CIA during the Clinton admin had the following to say regarding negotiations with the Sudanese, “From 1996 to 1998, I opened unofficial channels between Sudan and the Clinton administration. I met with officials in both countries, including Clinton, U.S. National Security Advisor Samuel R. “Sandy” Berger and Sudan’s president and intelligence chief. President Omar Hassan Ahmed Bashir, who wanted terrorism sanctions against Sudan lifted, offered the arrest and extradition of Bin Laden and detailed intelligence data about the global networks constructed by Egypt’s Islamic Jihad, Iran’s Hezbollah and the Palestinian Hamas. Among those in the networks were the two hijackers who piloted commercial airliners into the World Trade Center. Among those in the networks were the two hijackers who piloted commercial airliners into the World Trade Center. The silence of the Clinton administration in responding to these offers was deafening. In May 1996, the Sudanese capitulated to U.S. pressure and asked Bin Laden to leave, despite their feeling that he could be monitored better in Sudan than elsewhere. Bin Laden left for Afghanistan, taking with him Ayman Zawahiri, considered by the U.S. to be the chief planner of the Sept. 11 attacks; Mamdouh Mahmud Salim, who traveled frequently to Germany to obtain electronic equipment for Al Qaeda; Wadih El-Hage, Bin Laden’s personal secretary and roving emissary, now serving a life sentence in the U.S. for his role in the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings in Tanzania and Kenya; and Fazul Abdullah Mohammed and Saif Adel, also accused of carrying out the embassy attacks.” Though U.S. authorities knew of bin Laden’s involvement in bombings on an American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, they rejected each offer.

    I have plenty more to say but I’ll leave it at that for now.

  27. Thanks for actually taking the time to read it Josh. I see blogging like starting a new law firm though. Why start your own when you can just as easily rise through the ranks at one that already has all the contacts and business?

  28. Josh – not all terrorists come from Iraq. We have tightened up security in our country – that is why we have not had a terrorist attack on our since September 11. It has nothing to do with our pointless invasion of Iraq.

    “Our goal in going to Iraq was to prevent future attacks by Al Qaeda, and we have had none.” No. Our goal in Iraq was to stop the use of “weapons of mass destruction” that did not even exist.

    The bombings of the World Trade Center and USS Cole did not warrant large-scale military action. Clinton made the right choice – why would he risk the lives of thousands of others because 23 people were killed?

    “Some civilians were killed yes, but that is because terrorists would use them as shields, execute them, and hold hostages in places they know would be targeted. Civilian deaths were more often than not inflicted by our enemies.” False. Direct U.S. military action, particularly air strikes, has resulted in thousands of innocent civilian deaths in Iraq.

    “And what tax dollars? Neither of us pay taxes yet.” Point taken.

    Patrick – I was not taking a jab at your “chip on the shoulder” comment. In fact, I didn’t even see it

    “Dillon, you stated, ‘What didn’t you like about the Clinton years? The peace or the prosperity?'” Actually, James Carville said that. I was just quoting him.

    “I wouldn’t really call what happened during the Clinton presidency a true peace or even prosperous.” We weren’t at war. A budget surplus. 22.5 million new jobs were created. The average family income increased by $6,000. Some of the lowest unemployment rates in history. A dramatic drop in the poverty rate. Sounds like peace and prosperity to me…

    “The media seems to have forgotten Whitewater, a curious little real estate incident involving your beloved president.” The Clintons had a passive role in the incident. The only thing Whitewater did was give Clinton’s enemies an excuse the scam the American public out of $70 million to lead a failed investigation. Bill and Hillary were never convicted of anything – end of story.

    “Well, no mass killings like that of the Kurds (about 50,000 – 100,000 people)” Actually, there have been mass killings like that – 90,000+ innocent civilians have been killed in Iraq since our invasion.

    “The second point is, Clinton could fully have prevented the attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001.” I think 9/11 was inevitable – but that’s just me.

    Patrick – take my advice, don’t start blogging. It’s a ridiculous time commitment, especially if you are a perfectionist like me. That’s why I haven’t updated mine in a month or so. I am still not quite sure what the future of The Gray Ghost is.

  29. Dillon-What about the killings of American citizens on 9/11? That is not important to you? The fact that we were attacked in our homeland and that American blood was shed on our soil just doesn’t faze you? Should we not have responded in 1917 when the Germans sunk our ships unrestrictedly? Should we not have responded when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor? Which brings me to ask you why should we not have responded to this situation? We were attacked for God’s sake. Does it make a difference whether it was a country or just a group of people who hate America and the Western world? I think an attack on our soil by terrorists living in Iraq and the Middle East combined with the fact that Iraq was not cooperating with WMD searches justifies military action.

    Bush’s intelligence reports said that there were WMDs in Iraq. Sure we know now that they were faulty, but we did not know that then. Bush was just doing his duty as President to protect us from a threat. Although it turned out that there were no WMDs, Bush did the right thing, taking the necessary steps to ensure our safety. If the administration at our school caught wind in the hallway that a student was going to bring a gun to school the next day, don’t you think that the school would take the necessary steps, specifically searching that student and removing the threat, to ensure the safety of its students? Even if it turned out that the student did not bring a gun, I would be glad that the administration took the necessary steps to make sure everyone stayed safe. I would hope that the school would definitely act on the news instead of just saying, “Well, let’s wait and see if anybody gets hurt first. Then we’ll act!” That makes a lot of sense; be reactive instead of proactive!

    Lastly, Dillon, hindsight sees 20/20. Sure, you can look back and say there were no WMDs, and the intelligence was faulty. However, we did not know that 5 years ago. The government that there was a threat and acted upon it. The argument that we shouldn’t have gone into Iraw because there were no WMDs is bogus. We did not know that then (we only know it now), and intelligence reports said there were. Also, if someone is asked during a drug search to empty their pockets and they don’t, do you think it may be because they have drugs on them? Kind of like what Saddam did, eh? It only makes him look more guilty of having WMDs.

    What is right is not always popular. What is popular is not always right.

  30. Chris – I never said that the killing of innocent Americans on September 11 was not important. I just don’t believe that we should kill people in response to our people being killed. Plus, we aren’t even going after the people who are responsible for the 9/11 attacks!

  31. Dillon-Does that mean you were against US intervention in WWI and WWII? You’re right that our primary objective isn’t to go after those responsible for 9/11; we’re trying to promote national security and protect our country from a foreign threat. Now that that threat is neutralized, it’s time to begin the transfer of power back to the Iraqis, a transfer that can’t happen too fast and must occur slowly and peacefully.

  32. Sorry for getting back so late to you Dillon:

    “Do you have any evidence to support this ridiculous claim? Sorry, but no one was expecting this. You are making it sound like EVERYONE who supported/supports President Obama is stupid and/or naive, and this is not the case. No one is expecting a UPS truck to deliver a flat screen TV to their front door with a note attached saying “Love, President Obama.”

    Actually, I do. There are exit polls and there are nice videos and sound bytes supporting this. Remember that one video from my blog where the woman said she would not have to worry about gas or paying her mortgage anymore?

    “And for the record – I was too young to understand what was going on during Bush’s firs term. But, many people, including my parents, TRIED to support and like the guy. But let’s face it – what has he accomplished that has been beneficial to our country? Two wars? A rise in unemployment? An economic failure as a result of poor oversight? Richer rich people and poorer poor people? The Patriot Act? Abandoning of a post-Katrina New Orleans?”

    You may be too young for a lot of things. Bush tired to get more oversight into Fannie and Freddie but it was the liberals who stopped him. I quote Barney Frank “There is nothing wrong with Fannie and Freddie.”
    Beneficial…I don’t think we saw another terrorist attack.
    I don’t like MANY of the things Bush caved on but you really included too much in your little quote there. But, then again, you are young and impressionable.

  33. I was there (I was THERE!!) and I can attest that, in our little section of the crowd on the mall, there were VERY few dry eyes. While there may not have been much catch phrases or any soaring rhetoric, the speech was, I think, exactly what it needed to be; short, pointed, and inclusive.

  34. Actually, Dillon, we would be in our current economic shape regardless who was in the White House. Sub-Prime Mtgs, which were the spark that started things (but not THE factor) started almost 20 years ago. Congress, over the past eight years, has been run by both Democrat and Republican. Neither really did anything to stem any problems.

  35. Well stated Chris, and thank you for the complements.

    There is a certain amount of chemistry/biology that I was discussing with my friend Josh (after discovering it from a mentor of mine) a while ago which directly pertains to what some historians believe may have happened to the Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq. You can probably look on any historical fact finding website and learn that there are three types of WMDs which are colloquially known as NBC (Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical). In World War II, deadly nerve toxins were created that wreaked havoc on any person that was unfortunate enough to come into contact with them. True, they were not as common as the mustard gas of World War I, but they were still used in excess in the extermination of the Jews during the Holocaust. Now, each of these gases had a special property in common, they were all called organophosphates. Another interesting property, most of them were created as pesticides and insecticides before they were found to be able to cause mass death. During the 1940s, the Germans found that by increasing the concentration of each of these insecticides, they could create gases that were not only effective killers, but also transportable WMDs.

    Also true is the fact that fertilizer is an effective explosive agent. Not only was it used during the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995, but it is a fan-favorite of terrorists all over the world because of it’s potency (which ranges to more than half that of TNT; a good alternative if you dont have access to dynamite I guess). Must be why its distribution is tightly controlled in the United Kingdom.

    Fast forward to the present and we see much of the same technology being reused. The Kurds were run out of their own cities initially but then were mass-gassed by crop dusters who simply carried pesticides with a higher potency. Now, most of us think of Iraq as being a barren wasteland with rolling hills of sand, but that is only a small part of it. The rest is pretty much dominated by the agricultural mecca known as the fertile crescent. Thus, it is not too far of a stretch for the Iraqi government to have converted all of their war materials into farm equipment before the United States Government became wise to their dealings.

    Like I said before, most of this is speculation, but the fact that pesticide gas was used to annihilate the Kurds is pretty solid evidence that there may be some credence to this theory.

    Now back to the politics…..

    True, there was a surplus while Clinton was in office, but you must also consider that there is a time delay effect for each piece of legislation that passes through the presidents hands. For instance, I surely don’t blame the entire Great Depression on Franklin D. Roosevelt (though he did choose to raise taxes at the wrong time, much like Obama threatens to do). Quite the contrary, Herbert Hoover was just down-right a bad president. He certainly was not a good conservative. I will probably be pretty heavily bashed for this, but the facts remain: the depression emerging at this point in time is a sad side-effect of the Clinton presidency. He was the one who put the pressure on Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac back in 1997 to expand home ownership to American citizens who did not qualify for loans of that nature. I know that Kristi addressed the fact that the Republicans did not stop this false market boom from coming into effect. I would like to point out two things that make me question why you would make such a dumb statement. First, I want to know if you honestly believe that it is the Republican’s fault for the economic depression that we are entering because we did not slap the greedy hands of the Dems before the housing market got out of control? If so, it may have been a failure on our part (If of course we didn’t try to stop them……which we did), but doesn’t that prove that the political ideologies of the Republican Party are correct and that Democratic economic policy is critically flawed? Second, how do you think that the nation would have reacted to the Republican Party pointing out that the economic boom that we had previously experienced was really only a precursor to another economic depression. It is my contention that the Republicans in Congress knew how huge an uproar would result in bringing about the greater good and simply didn’t have the cohonies to put the good of the people before their popularity……welcome to the minds of politicians. It took a great man like John McCain to finally point out the fact that Wall Street and the two national mortgage companies were leading into an economic draught and the Democrats led by Barney Frank and less-than-conservative Republicans in Congress refused to listen. Fannie and Freddie have “enjoyed the nearest thing to a license to print money” because they are private companies that offer investors government-backed – i.e. taxpayer – guarantees against loss. Fannie and Freddie increase the amount of money available for mortgages by buying mortgages on the secondary market, pooling them, then selling them as mortgage-backed securities to investors on the open market. Fannie and Freddy took steps to make homeownership more affordable for lower-income Americans and those with a poor credit history. Those steps encouraged riskier mortgage lending by minimizing the role of credit histories in lending decisions, loosening required debt-to-equity ratios to allow borrowers to make small or even no down payments at all, and encouraging lenders the use of floating or adjustable interest-rate mortgages, including those with low “teasers.” Home ownership rates soared to historic highs and all was well as long as home prices increased and lenders could comfortably convert floating-rate mortgages to fixed-rate obligations. Then home values declined. Lenders foreclosed when buyers missed payments as adjustable mortgage rates increased. When the mortgage-backed securities plunged in value as a result, Fannie and Freddie turned to Congress to cover the losses. It all happened during the 1980s under the false front of Adjustable-Rate mortgages. (Courtesy of various sources).

    And um, Dillon……We are not the brutes that we were during World War II. With advances in Military technology, we no longer have the need to level entire cities like we had done previously. In World War II, our definition of accuracy was over five miles, now it is less than ten meters. We don’t have to destroy buildings or city blocks anymore because the army doesn’t utilize dumb bombs anymore. Now we are able to target air-conditioning shafts and specific buildings without destroying anything else. Not only that, I would like to point out that those civilian casualties have been largely the responsibility of radical insurgents. Not only that, that 90,000 person figure includes the casualties that both sides have caused, not like a mass murder orchestrated by one person like that of the Kurds.

    There is one thing that scares me about Obama though. Five of the six precursors that lead to a depression have already been fulfilled. The first is the fact that we are in a Global war, we have had a foreclosure crisis, there has been a major collapse of the United States banking system, There has been unwise use of credit (in that it was given to people who didn’t qualify for it) and the United States and Global stock markets have crashed. The only cause that is left to be implemented……..an increase in taxes.

  36. Roland – stupid people vote. That is a fact. A lot of stupid republicans genuinely believed that President Obama is a Muslim, and a lot of stupid Democrats believe that President Obama will answer all of their problems. It’s just the way our system works. While I agree that some people do believe that President Obama will make them rich, you make it sound like EVERYONE who voted for and/or supported him is naive and stupid, and that is just not the case.

    The mortgage crisis was everyone’s fault. Liberals, democrats, lenders, and homeowners. However – Bush’s old buddy that he chose to oversee Fannie and Freddie DID claim that they were on good shape. And we can’t forget all of GW’s initiatives to get people owning homes – especially minorities. People who, many times, couldn’t afford their own homes.

    This picture captures the former President’s thoughts on the matter quite well: http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2008/12/21/business/21admin.600.jpg

    I will continue to comment on this blog, whether you like it or not. I have my own thoughts and opinions that I have a right to share. If you think that I am to young to know what I am talking about, then that is your problem.

    Mrs. Chili – I’m jealous! How close were you?

    Patrick – As I said above, the economic crisis cannot be blamed on a single person or political party. Everyone had a part.

    And we don’t need to level entire cities? Then how come we do it anyway? Our invasion in 2003 pretty much leveled Baghdad. And although many deaths in Iraq have been the result of attacks by “radical insurgents,” this civil unrest can be directly attributed to our occupation.

    Am I saying that we didn’t need to do anything about Iraq? No. But I just don’t believe that a large-scale invasion and subsequent five year occupation were necessary.

    Call me a hippie, stoner, or whatever – but I just don’t like war. I don’t like innocent Americans OR Iraqis to die.

    “He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.”

  37. Dillon, I think you forgot Carter, Clinton and Janet Renos incentives to get Lenders to loan to people who could not afford a loan.

    Lest you forget, and I’ll remind you again, it was Bush who pushed for more oversight into Fannie and Freddie. I do fault him though for not pushing harder. It was high ranking Democrats who got cash, sweetheart deals and more cash from many of those same Lenders.

  38. Well Bush was the only one who succeeded – the data shows that home ownership increased dramatically during his time in office. He did push for more oversight of Fannie and Freddie – but then gave up. When his advisers tried to warn him about inflated home ownership, he didn’t do anything! Oh – and I almost forgot – he pushed to allow federally insured mortgages with no money down.

    As I said, I am not trying to say this is all Bush’s fault. BUT, you can’t be stupid enough to sit there and act like The White House didn’t have a part in this.

  39. Dillon, we were right in line with the top side of the Museum of the American Indian in the silver ticketed section, right in front of a jumbo tron. SO worth the hours of waiting in the cold. I’ve documented – and continue to reflect upon – our experience at the inauguration on my blog, theinnerdoor.wordpress.com

  40. Even though I wouldn’t have voted for President Obama, it still would have been cool to be there. Your very fortunate Mrs. Chili

  41. If two weeks pass and reality quickly begins to set in revealing a speech full of empty promises and BS, can the speech still be considered great and inspirational?

    I am also highly skeptical of the 77,000 votes in the poll. Thats about 33% of all people who have ever visited this blog.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s