Saturday, August 30, 2008


Full Text of Sen. Barack Obama's Historical Speech: With commentary by "Roadhouse".

To Chairman Dean and my great friend Dick Durbin; and to all my fellow citizens of this great nation. With profound gratitude and great humility, I accept your nomination for presidency of the United States. Let me express my thanks to the historic slate of candidates who accompanied me on this journey, (CARRIED ME) and especially the one who traveled the farthest -- a champion for working Americans and an inspiration to my daughters and yours -- Hillary Rodham Clinton.
To President Bill Clinton, who made last night the case for change as only he can make it (LIED); to Ted Kennedy, who embodies the spirit of service (UNLESS YOU'RE IN A CAR CRASH WITH HIM); and to the next vice president of the United States, Joe Biden, I thank you. I am grateful to finish this journey with one of the finest statesmen of our time (I THOUGHT HE SAID "BIDEN"), a man at ease with BULLYING everyone from world leaders to the conductors on the Amtrak train he still takes home every night.
To the love of my life, our next first lady, Michelle Obama, and to Malia and Sasha -- I love you so much, and I'm so proud of you.
Four years ago, I stood before you and told you my story -- of the brief union between a young man from Kenya and a young woman from Kansas who weren't well off or well-known, but shared a belief that in America, their son could achieve whatever he put his mind to (SOCIALISM AND RACISM). It is that promise that has always set this country apart -- that through hard work and sacrifice, each of us can pursue our individual dreams but still come together as one American family, to ensure that the next generation can pursue their dreams as well.
That's why I stand here tonight. Because for 232 years, at each moment when that promise was in jeopardy, ordinary men and women -- students and soldiers, farmers and teachers, nurses and janitors -- found the courage to keep it alive. We meet at one of those defining moments -- a moment when our nation is at war, our economy is in turmoil, and the American promise has been threatened once more (THANKS TO LIBERALISM). Tonight, more Americans are out of work and more are working harder for less (NOT TRUE). More of you have lost your homes and even more are watching your home values plummet. More of you have cars you can't afford to drive, credit card bills you can't afford to pay, and tuition that's beyond your reach BECAUSE OF YOUR OWN STUPID DECISIONS.
These challenges are not all of government's making. But the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics (LIBERALISM) in Washington and the failed policies of George W. Bush. CERTAINLY NOT THE DEMOCRAT LEAD CONGRESS.
America, we are better than these last eight years. We are a better country than this. This country is more decent than one where a woman in Ohio, on the brink of retirement, finds herself one illness away from disaster after a lifetime of hard work. We're a better country than one where a man in Indiana has to pack up the equipment he's worked on for 20 years and watch it shipped off to China THANKS TO HIGH CORPORATE TAXES, and then chokes up as he explains how he felt like a failure when he went home to tell his family the news . We are more compassionate than a government that lets veterans sleep on our streets and families slide into poverty (NEVER HAPPENED, THEY DO THAT ON THEIR OWN); that sits on its hands while a major American city drowns before our eyes (RAY NAGEN, MARY LANDREW, WILLIAM JEFFERSON).
Tonight, I say to the people of America, to Democrats and Republicans and independents across this great land -- enough! This moment -- this election -- is our chance to keep, in the 21st century, the American promise alive. Because next week, in Minnesota, the same party that brought you two terms of George Bush and Dick Cheney will ask this country for a third. And we are here because we love this country too much to let the next four years look just like the last eight.
On November 4, we must stand up and say: "Eight is enough." Now let there be no doubt. The Republican nominee, John McCain, has worn the uniform of our country with bravery and distinction, UNLIKE ME, and for that we owe him our gratitude and our respect. And next week, we'll also hear about those occasions when he's broken with his party as evidence that he can deliver the change that we need. But the record's clear: John McCain has voted with George Bush 90 percent of the time. Sen. McCain likes to talk about judgment, but really, what does it say about your judgment when you think George Bush has been right more than 90 percent of the time? ANSWER; HE'S ASTUTE.
I don't know about you, but I'm not ready to take a 10 percent chance on change. The truth is, on issue after issue that would make a difference in your lives -- on health care and education and the economy -- Sen. McCain has been anything but independent. He said that our economy has made "great progress" under this president (IT HAS). He said that the fundamentals of the economy are strong (THEY ARE).
And when one of his chief advisers -- the man who wrote his economic plan -- was talking about the anxieties that Americans are feeling, he said that we were just suffering from a "mental recession," and that we've become, and I quote, "a nation of whiners." A nation of whiners? YES. Tell that to the proud autoworkers at a Michigan plant (UNION CRY BABIES) who, after they found out it was closing, kept showing up every day and working as hard as ever, because they knew there were people who counted on the brakes that they made.
Tell that to the military families who shoulder their burdens silently as they watch their loved ones leave for their third or fourth or fifth tour of duty BECAUSE OF ANTI-WAR ACTIONS OF LIBERALS IN CONGRESS AND THE STATE DEPARTMENT.
These are not whiners. They work hard and they give back and they keep going without complaint. These are the Americans I know BUT WON'T VISIT IN GERMANY.Now, I don't believe that Sen. McCain doesn't care what's going on in the lives of Americans. I just think he doesn't know. Why else would he define middle-class as someone making under $5 million a year? How else could he propose hundreds of billions in tax breaks for big corporations and oil companies but not one penny of tax relief to more than 100 million Americans? BECAUSE HE KNOWS THAT MORE TAXES ARE PAID BY CORPORATIONS THAN POOR PEOPLE, AND THAT'S HOW THE ECONOMY WORKS. How else could he offer a health care plan that would actually tax people's benefits, or an education plan that would do nothing to help families pay for college, or a plan that would privatize Social Security and gamble your retirement? BECAUSE HE KNOWS THESE DECISIONS ARE TO BE MADE BY THE PEOPLE, NOT GOVERNMENT. It's not because John McCain doesn't care. It's because John McCain doesn't get it.
For over two decades, he's subscribed to that old, discredited Republican philosophy -- give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else (IT DOES). In Washington, they call this the Ownership Society, but what it really means is that you're on your own (EXACTLY THE WAY I WANT IT). Out of work? Tough luck. You're on your own. No health care? The market will fix it. You're on your own. Born into poverty? Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps -- even if you don't have boots. You are on your own. IT'S CALLED SELF RELIANCE AND DIGNITY...LOOK IT UP.
Well it's time for them to own their failure. It's time for us to change America. And that's why I'm running for president of the United States. You see, we Democrats have a very different measure of what constitutes progress in this country (NO KIDDING) . We measure progress by how many people can find a job that pays the mortgage; whether you can put a little extra money away at the end of each month so you can someday watch your child receive her college diploma ON SOMEONE ELSE'S DIME. We measure progress in the 23 million new jobs that were created when Bill Clinton was president (DOT COM BUBBLE)-- when the average American family saw its income go up $7,500 instead of go down $2,000 like it has under George Bush (WRONG AGAIN).We measure the strength of our economy not by the number of billionaires we have or the profits of the Fortune 500, but by whether someone with a good idea can take a risk and start a new business, or whether the waitress who lives on tips can take a day off and look after a sick kid without losing her job (THAT'S WHY DEMS ARE ALWAYS BAD FOR THE ECONOMY)-- an economy that honors the dignity of work.
The fundamentals we use to measure economic strength are whether we are living up to that fundamental promise that has made this country great -- a promise that is the only reason I am standing here tonight. Because in the faces of those young veterans who come back from Iraq and Afghanistan, I see my grandfather, who signed up after Pearl Harbor, marched in Patton's Army, and was rewarded by a grateful nation with the chance to go to college on the GI Bill. In the face of that young student who sleeps just three hours before working the night shift, I think about my mom, who raised my sister and me on her own while she worked and earned her degree; who once turned to food stamps but was still able to send us to the best schools in the country (LIB FACTORIES) with the help of student loans and scholarships.
When I listen to another worker tell me that his factory has shut down, I remember all those men and women on the South Side of Chicago I stood by and fought for two decades ago after the local steel plant closed THANKS TO HIGHER TAXES AND EXCESSIVE REGULATION. And when I hear a woman talk about the difficulties of starting her own business or making her way in the world, I think about my grandmother, who worked her way up from the secretarial pool to middle-management, despite years of being passed over for promotions because she was a woman.
She's the one who taught me about hard work. She's the one who put off buying a new car or a new dress for herself so that I could have a better life. She poured everything she had into me. And although she can no longer travel, I know that she's watching tonight, and that tonight is her night as well. Now, I don't know what kind of lives John McCain thinks that celebrities lead, but this has been mine. These are my heroes. Theirs are the stories that shaped my life. And it is on behalf of them that I intend to win this election and keep our promise alive as president of the United States.
What is that American promise? It's a promise that says each of us has the freedom to make of our own lives what we will, but that we also have the obligation to treat each other with dignity and respect LIKE REVEREND WRIGHT AND BILL AYERS WOULD. It's a promise that says the market should reward drive and innovation and generate growth, but that businesses should live up to their responsibilities to create American jobs (THAT'S NOT THEIR PURPOSE OR RESPONSIBILITY), to look out for American workers, and play by the rules of the road. Ours is a promise that says government cannot solve all our problems, but what it should do is that which we cannot do for ourselves (NO SUCH THING)-- protect us from harm and provide every child a decent education; keep our water clean and our toys safe; invest in new schools (VOUCHERS) and new roads and science and technology.
Our government should work for us, not against us. It should help us, not hurt us. OR BETTER YET, GET OUT OF OUR WAY. It should ensure opportunity not just for those with the most money and influence, but for every American who's willing to work. That's the promise of America -- the idea that we are responsible for ourselves, but that we also rise or fall as one nation; the fundamental belief that I am my brother's keeper; I am my sister's keeper. UNLESS MY BROTHER IS A TOTAL SLACKER. That's the promise we need to keep. That's the change we need right now. So let me spell out exactly what that change would mean if I am president.
Change means a tax code that doesn't reward the lobbyists who wrote it, but the American workers and small businesses who deserve it. You know, unlike John McCain, I will stop giving tax breaks to corporations that ship jobs overseas (THEY GO OVERSEAS BECAUSE OF THE HIGH TAXES HERE...DUH, and I will start giving them to companies that create good jobs right here in America (UNLESS THEY PRODUCE OIL).
I'll eliminate capital gains taxes for the small businesses and the start-ups that will create the high-wage, high-tech jobs of tomorrow. I will, listen now, cut taxes -- cut taxes -- for 95 percent of all working families. Because in an economy like this, the last thing we should do is raise taxes on the middle-class. And for the sake of our economy, our security and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as president: In 10 years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East (NOT WITHOUT DRILLING YOU WON'T). We will do this.
Washington's been talking about our oil addiction for the last 30 years, and by the way John McCain's been there for 26 of them. And in that time, he's said no to higher fuel-efficiency standards for cars, no to investments in renewable energy, no to renewable fuels (FOR GOOD REASON). And today, we import triple the amount of oil that we had as the day that Sen. McCain took office BECAUSE MY PARTY WON'T LET YOU DRILL FOR YOUR OWN HERE. Now is the time to end this addiction, and to understand that drilling is a stop-gap measure, not a long-term solution. Not even close.
As president, I will tap our natural gas reserves, invest in clean coal technology, and find ways to safely harness nuclear power. I KNOW THOSE WAYS ALREADY EXIST, BUT MY PARTY WON'T LET US DO THAT EITHER. I'll help our auto companies re-tool, so that the fuel-efficient cars of the future are built right here in America. JUST DON'T ASK ME HOW.
I'll make it easier for the American people to afford these new cars. JUST DON'T ASK ME HOW. And I'll invest $150 billion over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy -- wind power and solar power and the next generation of biofuels; an investment that will lead to new industries and 5 million new jobs that pay well and can't be outsourced. RUSSIA AND CHINA SAY "THANKS".
America, now is not the time for small plans.Now is the time to finally meet our moral obligation to provide every child a world-class education VOUCHER, because it will take nothing less to compete in the global economy.
You know, Michelle and I are only here tonight because we were given a chance at an education AND THE DNC LIKES TO PLAY THE RACE CARD. And I will not settle for an America where some kids don't have that chance TO LIVE OFF THE GOVERNMENT.
I'll invest in early childhood education. I'll recruit an army of new teachers, and pay them higher salaries and give them more support BECAUSE I BELIEVE THROWING MONEY AT THE PROBLEM IS ALWAYS THE BEST WAY TO FIX IT. And in exchange, I'll ask for higher standards and more accountability. And we will keep our promise to every young American -- if you commit to serving your community or our country, we will make sure you can afford a college education.
Now is the time to finally keep the promise of affordable, accessible health care for every single American. If you have health care, my plan will lower your premiums. JUST DON'T ASK ME HOW. If you don't, you'll be able to get the same kind of coverage that members of Congress give themselves. JUST DON'T ASK ME HOW. And as someone who watched my mother argue with insurance companies while she lay in bed dying of cancer, I will make certain those companies stop discriminating against those who are sick and need care the most. BECAUSE I BELIEVE IN GOVERNMENT MAKING YOUR BUSINESS DECISIONS FOR YOU.
Now is the time to help families with paid sick days and better family leave, because nobody in America should have to choose between keeping their job and caring for a sick child or ailing parent AND BECAUSE I HAVE NO IDEA HOW MUCH IT COSTS TO RUN A BUSINESS.
Now is the time to change our bankruptcy laws, so that your pensions are protected ahead of CEO bonuses; and the time to protect Social Security for future generations BECAUSE IT'S SUCH A GREAT INVESTMENT. And now is the time to keep the promise of equal pay for an equal day's work, because I want my daughters to have the exact same opportunities as your sons. Now, many (ALL) of these plans will cost money (YOURS), which is why I've laid out how I'll pay for every dime -- by closing corporate loopholes and tax havens that don't help America grow BUT KEEP BUSINESSES HERE.
But I will also go through the federal budget, line by line, eliminating programs that no longer work and making the ones we do need work better and cost less -- because we cannot meet 21st century challenges with a 20th century bureaucracy. And Democrats, we must also admit that fulfilling America's promise will require more than just money. It will require a renewed sense of responsibility from each of us to recover what John F. Kennedy called our "intellectual and moral strength."
Yes, government must lead on energy independence, but each of us must do our part to make our homes and businesses more efficient OR ELSE!!! Yes, we must provide more ladders to success for young men who fall into lives of crime and despair. But we must also admit that programs alone can't replace parents BUT I'M WORKING ON IT; that government can't turn off the television and make a child do her homework; that fathers must take more responsibility to provide love and guidance to their children.
Individual responsibility and mutual responsibility -- that's the essence of America's promise AND MY MORTAL ENEMY. And just as we keep our promise to the next generation here at home, so must we keep America's promise abroad. If John McCain wants to have a debate about who has the temperament, and judgment, to serve as the next commander in chief, that's a debate I'm ready to have.
For while Sen. McCain was turning his sights to Iraq just days after 9/11, I stood up and opposed this war, knowing that it would distract us from the real threats that we face. When John McCain said we could just "muddle through" in Afghanistan, I argued for more resources and more troops to finish the fight against the terrorists who actually attacked us on 9/11, and made clear that we must take out Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants if we have them in our sights. You know, John McCain likes to say that he'll follow bin Laden to the Gates of Hell -- but he won't even go to the cave where he lives. (OBAMA KNOWS WHERE BIN LADEN LIVES?)
And today, as my call for a time frame to remove our troops from Iraq has been echoed by the Iraqi government and even the Bush administration, even after we learned that Iraq has $79 billion in surplus while we are wallowing in deficits, John McCain stands alone in his stubborn refusal to end a misguided war. NOTICE HOW I NEVER SAY "WIN THIS WAR". That's not the judgment we need. That won't keep America safe. BUT ALLOWING TERRORIST AND DICTATORS TO CONTINUE THEIR ANTICS WILL.
We need a president who can face the threats of the future, not keep grasping at the ideas of the past. You don't defeat a terrorist network that operates in 80 countries by occupying Iraq, UNLESS THE LEADER OF IRAQ IS FUNDING TERRORISTS AND TREATENING AMERICA. You don't protect Israel and deter Iran just by talking tough in Washington, YET I CLAIM TO BE ANTI-WAR AND PRO-DIPLOMACY. You can't truly stand up for Georgia when you've, WELL, ACTUALLY ME AND MY PARTY strained our oldest alliances.
If John McCain wants to follow George Bush with more tough talk and bad strategy, that is his choice -- but that is not the change that America needs. We are the party of Roosevelt. We are the party of Kennedy. So don't tell me that Democrats won't defend this country. Don't tell me that Democrats won't keep us safe. The Bush-McCain foreign policy has squandered the legacy that generations of Americans -- Democrats and Republicans -- have built, and we are here to restore that legacy.
As commander in chief, I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will only send our troops into harm's way with a clear mission and a sacred commitment to give them the equipment they need in battle UNLESS IT'S A STRATEGIC DEFENSE MISSILE SYSTEM and the care and benefits they deserve when they come home LIKE A COURT MARSHAL FOR KILLING TERRORISTS.
I will end NOT WIN this war in Iraq responsibly, and finish the fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan BUT NOT IRAQ. I will rebuild our military to meet future conflicts. But I will also renew the tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons and curb Russian aggression. THAT MEANS I WILL GIVE TERRORIST LEGITAMACY BY TALKING TO THEM.
I will build new partnerships to defeat the threats of the 21st century: terrorism and nuclear proliferation; poverty and genocide; climate change and disease. JUST DON'T ASK ME HOW. And I will restore our moral standing, so that America is once again that last, best hope for all who are called to the cause of freedom, who long for lives of peace, and who yearn for a better future. BECAUSE I DON'T LIKE MY COUNTRY NOW, AND DON'T ASK ME HOW.
These are the policies I will pursue. And in the weeks ahead, I look forward to debating them with John McCain BUT ONLY AS OFTEN AS I HAVE TO. But what I will not do is suggest that the senator takes his positions for political purposes. Because one of the things that we have to change in our politics is the idea that people cannot disagree without challenging each other's character and each other's patriotism.
The times are too serious, the stakes are too high for this same partisan playbook. SO I HAVE A WHOLE NEW PARTISAN PLAYBOOK. So let us agree that patriotism has no PLACE IN MY party.
I love this country, and so do you, and so does John McCain. The men and women who serve in our battlefields may be Democrats and Republicans and independents, but they have fought together and bled together and some died together under the same proud flag. They have not served a Red America or a Blue America -- they have served the United States of America. So I've got news for you, John McCain. We all put our country first.America, our work will not be easy.
The challenges we face require tough choices, and Democrats as well as Republicans will need to cast off the worn-out ideas and politics of the past EXCEPT OF COURSE FOR SOCIALISM. For part of what has been lost these past eight years can't just be measured by lost wages or bigger trade deficits.
What has also been lost is our sense of common purpose. That's what we have to restore. We may not agree on abortion BECAUSE I'VE VOTED FOR KILLING BABIES BOTH IN AND OUT OF THE WOMB, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than they are for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don't tell me we can't uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals. JUST DON'T LOOK AT MY SECOND AMMENDMENT VOTING RECORD.
I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination. You know, passions may fly on immigration, but I don't know anyone who benefits when a mother is separated from her infant child (NEVER HAPPENED) or an employer undercuts American wages by hiring illegal workers.
But this, too, is part of America's promise -- the promise of a democracy where we can find the strength and grace to bridge divides and unite in common effort. I know there are those who dismiss such beliefs as happy talk. HIS NAME IS ROADHOUSE. They claim that our insistence on something larger, something firmer and more honest in our public life is just a Trojan Horse for higher taxes and the abandonment of traditional values. And that's to be expected. Because if you don't have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare voters. OH, AND BECAUSE MY VOTING RECORD PROVES IT.
If you don't have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from.You make a big election about small things.And you know what -- it's worked before. Because it feeds into the cynicism we all have about government. When Washington doesn't work, all its promises seem empty. If your hopes have been dashed again and again, then it's best to stop hoping, and settle for what you already know.I get it.
I realize that I am not the likeliest candidate for this office. I don't fit the typical pedigree, and I haven't spent my career in the halls of Washington. I HAVE NO EXPERIENCE WHAT SO EVER. I HANG OUT WITH PEOPLE WHO HATE AMERICA. I DON'T UNDERSTAND THE FREE MARKET OR BASIC ECONOMICS. I DON'T EVEN UNDERSTAND A PERSON'S BASIC RIGHT TO BE BORN.
But I stand before you tonight because all across America something is stirring. What the naysayers don't understand is that this election has never been about me. (TELL THAT TO THE MEDIA) It's about you. It's about you.
For 18 long months, you have stood up, one by one, and said enough to the politics of the past. You understand that in this election, the greatest risk we can take is to try the same old politics with the same old players and expect a different result. You have shown what history teaches us -- that at defining moments like this one, the change we need doesn't come from Washington. Change comes to Washington. Change happens because the American people demand it -- because they rise up and insist on new ideas and new leadership, a new politics for a new time. America, this is one of those moments.
I believe that as hard as it will be, the change we need is coming. Because I've seen it. Because I've lived it. Because I've seen it in Illinois, when we provided health care to more children and moved more families from welfare to work. I've seen it in Washington, where we worked across party lines to open up government and hold lobbyists more accountable, BECAUSE I DON'T UNDERSTAND THE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO LOBBY CONGRESS, to give better care for our veterans and keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of terrorist UNLESS THEY ARE A DICTATOR IN IRAQ. And I've seen it in this campaign. In the young people who voted for the first time, and the young at heart, those who got involved again after a very long time. In the Republicans who never thought they'd pick up a Democratic ballot, but did FOR "OPERATION CHAOS".
I've seen it in the workers who would rather cut their hours back a day even though they can't afford it than see their friends lose their jobs BECAUSE OF HIGH CORPORATE TAXES, in the soldiers who re-enlist after losing a limb, in the good neighbors who take a stranger in when a hurricane strikes and the floodwaters rise.
You know, this country of ours has more wealth than any nation, but that's not what makes us rich. We have the most powerful military on Earth, but that's not what makes us strong. Our universities and our culture are the envy of the world, but that's not what keeps the world coming to our shores. Instead, it is that American spirit -- that American promise -- that pushes us forward even when the path is uncertain; that binds us together in spite of our differences; that makes us fix our eye not on what is seen, but what is unseen, that better place around the bend. That promise is our greatest inheritance AND WITH MY RECORD OF VOTING FOR THE INHERITANCE TAX, IT WILL BE YOUR ONLY INHERITANCE.
It's a promise I make to my daughters when I tuck them in at night, and a promise that you make to yours -- a promise that has led immigrants to cross oceans and pioneers to travel west; a promise that led workers to picket lines, and women to reach for the ballot. And it is that promise that 45 years ago today, brought Americans from every corner of this land to stand together on a Mall in Washington, before Lincoln's Memorial, and hear a young preacher from Georgia speak of his dream. THAT PREACHER WOULD SLAP THE CRAP OUT OF ME IF HE WERE ALIVE TODAY. The men and women who gathered there could've heard many things. They could've heard words of anger and discord. They could've been told to succumb to the fear and frustration of so many dreams deferred.But what the people heard instead -- people of every creed and color, from every walk of life -- is that in America, our destiny is inextricably linked. That together, our dreams can be one."We cannot walk alone," the preacher cried. "And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back." America, we cannot turn back. Not with so much work to be done. Not with so many children to educate (INDOCTRINATE), and so many veterans to care for. Not with an economy to fix and cities to rebuild and farms to save. Not with so many UNARMED families to protect THAT I WANT TO REMAIN DEFENSELESS and so many lives to mend OR DESTROY AT BIRTH, WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.
America, we cannot turn back. We cannot walk alone BECAUSE I WANT THE GOVERNMENT TO BE UP YOUR ASS AT ALL TIMES. At this moment, in this election, we must pledge once more to march into the future. Let us keep that promise -- that American promise -- and in the words of Scripture hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess.Thank you, God Bless you, and God Bless the United States of America.

Friday, August 29, 2008


OK, the title might be a bit weak. But hey, it's a blog, not heady literature. Like many conservatives, I have been luke-warm at best regarding the nomination of John McCain for President. Not because he's a dud, but because I think we could do so much better if we just stood up for our core beliefs instead of allowing the media to define us. He's not a "dud" but let's face it, he's way too willing to play the game on liberal terms which is pretty close to the dud zone.
I knew my support for him would hinge on his pick for VP. I was totally willing to sacrifice the next four years knowing that Obama's naive policies would create such a mess that the people would have no choice but to embrace a conservative candidate in 2012. Granted, this was not a great plan, but it's not like I had many options. After all, I'm only one vote.
I woke up Friday morning ready to accept the worst case scenario. If McCain picked Lieberman, I knew I would be staying home on election day. The same would happen if he picked Huckabee. In the back of my mind, I was hoping that he was going to surprise everyone by picking Fred Thompson. But as a realist, I knew that was a long shot.
Later that morning, I ran into a friend of mine at work who happens to be a fellow political junkie. He asked me what I thought of Sarah Palin from Alaska because he heard that was going to be the pick. I told him that I really didn't know much about her, but what I did know, I liked. In fact, until nine o'clock tonight, I couldn't pick her out of a line-up. Let's face it, conservatives are not known for their media coverage. Until today, I had only heard her in radio interviews and read about her in newspapers.
Later, it was confirmed by McCain himself at a rally in Ohio that Palin was the VP pick. This was followed by a speech by Palin herself that I was able to listen to on the radio. Let me just say, I'm on board for McCain.
Much will be made about her lack of experience compared to Biden. But what good is experience if you've been wrong on pretty much every issue for your thirty-plus years in Washington as Biden has been? Also, Governors actually manage and delegate authority for the extent of their term. Senators "legislate"...and not much else. Neither Biden or Obama have ever ran anything.
One dynamic that will be worth watching is Biden's tendency to bully people now that his prey is going to be female. Will he be able to "keep it in his pants" or will he walk out on that very thin branch and be his usual cocky/condescending self toward a woman for all the world to see? How will that play in middle America...especially with women voters? How will that contrast with the Obama claims of "change", civility and bi-partisanship? Will Biden's bullying make him look ridiculous if Palin is not impressed with his tactics and totally cleans his clock in their debate? Will the Obamas keep trying to claim "regular folk" status now that a hocky-Mom who's married to an oil worker/snowmobile racer is in the mix?
In any case, thing's just got a whole lot more interesting around here.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Like everyone, I was eagerly awaiting "Comrade Hopeski's" choice for Vice President. I must admit, I was sure he would pick Hillary. After all, I was under the impression that he actually wanted to win. I almost choked on my Golden Grahams this morning when I saw that he had picked Senator Joe Biden.
Think about it. If you have based your entire campaign on the idea of "change", why in the world would you pick one of the most none-"change" oriented people in Congress? To change, you would do something different, not status quo. Who's more status quo than Joe Biden? But that's just for starters.

With this pick, he has single-handedly alienated every female voter who had formerly supported Hillary Clinton and might have accepted an Obama/Clinton ticket. We already knew he was a racist, but now he looks like a sexist as well.

Then there is Biden's personality. I have seen enough of his antics on the Senate floor and in Congressional hearings to safely say that this man is a class "A" jerk. His condescending attitude and snideness is surely going to become a liability to Obama. Then again, maybe he chose Biden because he wanted someone who could make him look less arrogant. In that case, it was a genius pick.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not sure that McCain is going to make the right choice either. That pick will probably be what decides the election, and I'm biting my fingernails as we speak. In any case, it is going to be fun watching Obama try to convince people that his administration is about "unity" and "change" while Biden shoots his mouth off and looks down his nose at everyone he disagrees with. Then we can marvel at Obama as he tries to convince us how experienced he is while having a veteran Sentor as a VP. That's akin to Robin driving the Batmobile and Batman being forced to play second banana.
Let's not forget that only months ago, Biden went on record saying that he felt Obama was not ready for the Presedency.

For now, we'll all have the fun of watching the endless hours of Biden's greatest hits from the C-SPAN archives. Plus any new ones between now and November.

Sunday, August 17, 2008


Last night, between my niece's birthday celebration and hanging out with a visiting distant relative, I was able to catch bits and pieces of the first Presidential "debate" of 08'. Less of a debate and more of a job interview conducted by Rick Warren of Purpose Driven Life fame, it was a pretty good opener to the campaign season. I'm not a big fan of Warren's, or his follow-up free approach to the questions he asked, but he probably did as well as could be expected for someone masquerading as an evangelical.

Being the kind of guy I am, I was trying to give Obama the benefit of the doubt and in the back of my mind I was actually hoping that he would say something that would calm my fears that he is totally clueless. I think I was hoping he could give me something to hold onto in the event that he actually wins the Whitehouse. Right out of the gate, I realized that there is no virtue in giving this man the benefit of any doubt...he truly is clueless.

Warren asked Obama if he believes in evil, and if so, how to deal with it. This is how our favorite "hope-monger" decided to answer the question.

Obama: “The one thing that I think is very important is for us to have some humility in how we approach the issue of confronting evil, but you know a lot of evil has been perpetrated based on the claim that we were trying to confront evil,” Obama added. “Just because we think our intentions are good doesn't always mean that we’re going to be doing good.”

Humility? Is he kidding? Are we supposed to bow our heads or ask permission before defending our nation? Was Patton humble? Were we humble when we stormed the beaches at Normandy? Are our enemies humble when they ram our planes into office buildings?

"Claim that we are trying to confront evil"? Would he say that to a Marine who just walked off the battlefield in Iraq or Afghanistan?

His defeatist answer to Warren's question explains why he didn't take the time to visit with the wounded soldiers in Germany a few weeks back. After being given the opportunity to at least look like someone who would be capable of protecting America from the terrorist threat, Obama decided to give the USA yet another verbal kick to the crotch.

He went on to cite Darfur and inner-city crime as examples of evil in our time. Not Al-Queda. Not the Taliban. Not Hammas. I suppose it was too much for Obama to actually throw our troops a bone for once by acknowledging that the monsters they battle for us every day might actually be evil after all.

I'm actually glad that I was not able to focus on the debate because I'm sure that me putting my boot through my father-in-law's television would have been quite the mood killer for my niece's birthday party.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Well, one thing's for sure. I need to brush up on my geography as well as my Eastern Block history. Then again, let's face it. All you really need to know is that Russia is a country rooted in communism and currently lead by a former KGB agent who has a very questionable history. Couple that with a former Soviet country that has decided to become pro-western, and pro-American, and the script pretty much writes itself.

Make no mistake about it, this weekend's invasion of Georgia by the former Soviet Union is just a warm-up exercise. It is a message being sent to the world by a country that is eager to regain it's former "big kid on the block" status. That message is; "We are still here and we are going to do what we want"

Now that the Russians have invaded Georgia, the question becomes; Who's next? The other question is; What do we do about it?

Realistically, short of going to war with Russia, there's really not much we can do but sit back and watch, piss and moan, and go through the usual motions of diplomacy, political pressure and unified condemnation. Of course, none of this will actually stop Russia from invading other people's countries, but it will make us feel accomplished on account of our good intentions. Eventually, after Russia has had time to rally and organize it's allies and demoralize it's enemies, we may have no choice but go to war with them.

If that happens, I wonder if we are going to have the will to fight for our freedom as a nation. Between now and the time we actually decide that something needs to be done, it will be interesting to see how many people will need to die before we make that decision.

Maybe I'm wrong and this will all blow over and Russia will become best friends with Georgia and renounce it's affiliations with Iran. Somehow I doubt it.

Friday, August 8, 2008


On July 24th, I wrote about John Edwards' then alleged affair with another woman as reported by the National Inquirer. In my article I assessed Edwards' reaction to be that of a guy who is probably guilty. I came to that conclusion by factoring-in the positions taken by all parties involved. I did not consult a crystal ball. I did not wear a big turban and hold envelopes up to my head. I did not call Jackie Stallone or the Amazing Kreskin. I didn't read it my tea leaves or see it my dreams.
I came to the correct conclusion by using nothing more than deductive reasoning and common sense. This tactic has served me well in the years since I broke the bonds of liberalism. In other earlier articles, I asserted that the mear mention of drilling for oil by our leaders would lower the price of crude. As predicted, immediately after President Bush lifted the ban on off-shore drilling, the price fell. As the idea of drilling has become more popular in the past few months, the price has continued to decline. Again, not clarevoyance...deductive reasoning.

Deductive reasoning is less of a skill, and more of a way of thinking. It allows you to weigh options and decide which is the most likely to be right based on all the information available to you. Most of the time this method of prediction is much more accurate than the liberal method of assuming the worst according to what fits your agenda, regardless of the evidence. That's probably why liberals are wrong so often and have to find new and better ways to distract and tap dance their way out of the jams they create.


Normally, when people have some sort of court appearance, they look at it as something to dread. They see it as an inconvenience. If they are there to defend themselves it can also be intimidating. Thankfully, my first ever trip to court was because I had been summoned to be a witness in a drunk driving incident.
Part of being a truck driver means that you see a lot of bad things on the road. One such thing was a pair of individuals from south of the border in a car that was driving so erratically, that I thought maybe the driver had suffered a heart attack and the car was out of control. After calling 911, I followed them and reported their destination to the authorities. After the passenger was finished urinating in public on their own car, the state troopers arrived and proceeded to cuff and stuff them. Neither had a valid driver's licence and both had "questionable" immigration status. Both were totally drunk to the point that they could barely stand. Keep in mind that this was about 6:oo pm, not right after closing time at the bar. I know that this story is hard to believe because as we all know, all immigrants are law abiding citizens and would never drive drunk...but it did happen.
A week later, I received my first summons. I was so proud. Luckily, I was to appear during my "staycation" and not during a work day. Otherwise I would have been p*$$*d. As it turns out, the driver happened to have been out on bond for another crime (I know, I know...hard to believe) so he took a deal and my testimony wasn't needed after all.

The most interesting part of this whole situation turned out to be the people who were not even involved with this case. As I was waiting in the hall for the judge to arrive, I was getting quite an education as to how some people think you should present yourself to a judge. One girl decided that it would be a good idea to show up wearing her Mickey Mouse pajamas. Another came sporting gang tattoos and lip, eyebrow, and nose rings. A guy just down from me thought it would be cool idea to show up high as a kite with eyes that could have doubled for stop signs. Un-shaven faces and flip-flops were also acceptable attire in this particular court of law.
Then there was "Bill". Bill was a seemingly normal looking guy who was dressed to go to the driving range, not court. Compared to the others, his fashions were not going to be an issue. His problems started when he walked into the courtroom just as his docket number was being called, not 15 minutes early as instructed. Bill was cited for driving on a suspended licence. When the judge asked him why he had no lawyer representing him, he looked as though he was being spoken to in some kind of unknown language. He told the judge that he didn't know that he needed a lawyer. The judge's look was one that had to be seen. He asked Bill if he realized that he was standing in front of a District Court Justice in a court of law because he was facing a up to a year in prison and thousands of dollars in fines. Bill nearly passed out.
The judge had mercy on Bill and issued a continuance, after ordering him to bring a lawyer next time.

You often hear how stupid some people are, and how others simply have no respect for the law even when they will be the only ones who suffer for it. But sometimes you have to experience it to truly believe it. I'm sure that "high guy" and "shrapnel face" really thought that they would be helping their case with their antics, but I have a feeling that the judge was not amused when their case came across his bench.

Sunday, August 3, 2008


Being a truck driver can occasionally be a tad boring. Driving for miles on end forces you to find ways to entertain yourself from time to time. For me, I have found reading bumper stickers to be a pretty good way to pass the time. Some stickers are little more than advertisements for a product, service, or restaurant. Of course others are supposed to be pearls of political wisdom offered up by drivers of Volvo station wagons and Toyota hybrids. Those are my favorite.
Unfortunately, we don't live in a world where pulling these people over and demanding they explain the logic of their bumper sticker is politically correct...or legal...or sane. Thankfully, I can at least use the power of the blog to deconstruct the concepts of some of the more popular bumper stickers. Here they are in no particular order:

Well, that depends on the question. If the question is what to do when your neighbor's dog leaves a "present" on your lawn, then the answer is probably not "war". If your wife leaves the toilet seat down, the proper response is probably not "war".
But, if the question is what to do with a murdering dictator who has a history of invading other people's countries and funding terrorism, all while threatening both your country, your Ally's country and the world's oil supply after years of diplomacy, political pressure, sanctions, and threats of "serious consequences" don't work...then the answer most definitely is "war".

Oh really? Ever hear of Somalia? Black Hawk Down? WTC 1st try? USS Cole? Kenya? Tanzania? Khobar Towers? Rwanda? Serbia? Waco? Ruby Ridge? Vince Foster?

It's a Democrat controlled Congress. What's stopping you? If you really have a case, go for it.

Tell that to radical Islamists when they're beheading someone or "honor killing" their daughters.

You're right, there is "no war for oil".

How is bringing them home before the job is done, resulting in their many sacrifices having been made for nothing considered to be "supporting" them?

Why? What makes them so special? If Iraq isn't worthy of freedom, then why is Tibet?

Maybe about being a conservative.

I don't think the sun can read bumper stickers.

Friday, August 1, 2008


This week, John McCain launched his latest campaign add. The premise of the add was to question the legitimacy of Barack Obama's seemingly un-checked rise to celebrity status. While comparing Obama to Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, the add ends by asking if Obama is ready to lead. In any other election season, I would probably dismiss this add as just another tactic designed to distract voters. But let's face it, this is not just "any other election season".

This season, we have a candidate with no definable experience what-so-ever attempting to be elected the leader of the free world. Don't get me wrong, 143 days worth of experience at McDonald's would probably qualify you to be an assistant manager...well, maybe not. 143 days of experience behind the wheel of an eighteen wheeler would qualify you to run a trucking company...well, maybe not. As a matter of fact, I have beer in my fridge that's been there for more than 143 days. Does the fact that during his lengthy 143 day Senate career Obama most often voted "present" rather than "yes" or "no" warrant such rock star treatment?

Perhaps I'm being a little hard on B.O. After all, he was a "community organizer" earlier in his life. Now, could someone tell me exactly what a "community organizer" is?

The point is, like Hilton and Spears, Barack Obama is famous and no one can tell you why. Like Hilton and Spears, he looks good but has no real talent and no marketable skills. Like Hilton and Spears, B.O. is popular because the media tells you he's popular...not because of a long list of accomplishments. Like Hilton and Spears, whenever Obama strays from a pre-written script and tries to speak on his own, what comes out of his mouth is nothing less than naive, and he's not questioned about it. Like Hilton and Spears, Obama has legions of fans who couldn't care less that he has no identifiable substance, so long as he keeps making them feel good. Like Hilton and Spears, Obama has become a distraction from those who actually have talent and paid their dues through years of hard work and sacrifice.

So far as I can see, the only real difference between Obama and the other two is a mini-skirt.