The Deaf Claque

Because they’re worth clapping for…probably…

Bush Defends Mukasey, While Attacking Congress

By Theo O’Brien

 

Click Here for Speech (External Video)

In a speech today (original source) before the Heritage Foundation, President Bush plead for the confirmation of Michael Mukasey while scolding Congress for what he considers a lack of progress and support for the troops deployed overseas.

 

Attorney General nominee Michael Mukasey’s recently struggled with Democrats over his definition of torture. In his speech the President rose to the defense of his nominee reasoning that the acceptance of Mukasey as Attorney General is key to America’s safety against terrorism.

 

The job of the attorney general is essential to the security of America. The attorney general is the highest ranking official responsible for our law enforcement community’s efforts to detect and prevent terrorist attacks here at home.” (1)

In response to the Senate Judiciary Committee’s continued pressure for a more revealing insight into the legality of the United States’ interrogation techniques by Mr. Mukasey, the President had this to say:

Finally, he does not want any statement of his to give the terrorists a window into which techniques we may use and which ones we may not use. That could help them train their operatives to resist questioning and withhold vital information we need to stop attacks and save lives.” (1)

President Bush recently vocalized his disapproval of Congress, chastising the fact that they have not sent him a War Spending Bill yet. Today, he again called on Congress to allocate the funds necessary to fund the Iraq war.

 

Congress is also stalling on the emergency war supplemental to fund our troops on the front lines in Afghanistan and Iraq. This crucial bill includes funds for bullets and body armor, protection against IEDs and mine-resistant ambush-protective vehicles.” (1)

He also spoke adamantly of the need to pass other bills to support the troops fighting in Iraq currently, and those who have returned.

Congress also needs to pass the Department of Defense spending bill, as well as a funding bill for our nation’s veterans.

There are reports that congressional leaders may be considering combining the funding bills for our military and our veterans together with a bloated labor, health and education spending bill.

It’s hard to imagine a more cynical ploy than holding funding for our troops and our wounded warriors hostage in order to extract $11 billion in wasteful Washington spending.” (1)

This has been the latest of a string of pleas by the President for financial support of the war, highlighted by his recent criticism of Congress as having “the worst record for a Congress in 20 years.” (2)

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November 1, 2007 Posted by | Congress, George W. Bush, Iraq War, Theo O'Brien | , , , | Leave a comment

“The Describer”: A Speech About a Speech

By Nathan Schmitt


The President gave a speech today, but earlier in the day he gave a preview. I thought this was rather odd on multiple counts:

President Bush:”I wanted to highlight the speech I’m giving today to Heritage. I’m concerned that there are some who have lost sight of the fact that we’re at war with extremists and radicals who want to attack us again. Part of the speech is to remind people that even though we haven’t been attacked since September the 11th, there’s still an enemy out there that would like to attack us.” (1)

First and most trivial, this is another example of the President as “The Describer.” That was just kind of funny. The content of this introductory paragraph was a bit less funny. I have a hard time reading the President: does he genuinely believe that people have forgotten about the possibility of terrorist attacks as he claims or is there another motive? It would be unfair for me to say either way since I’m by no means George W. Bush so I won’t.

In addition to that, I would suggest that this is a scare tactic. It’s impossible to determine whether or not the use of this tactic was consciously motivated; surely, it would be rather cynical–and more importantly, irrelevant–to assume so. Regardless of the intent of the President, it has the same effect on the population. Rather than basing an argument for war on rationale and logic, scare tactics seek to use emotions overtake one’s logic.

Please recognize that this is not a criticism of the President himself. Such examples of non-rational, non-logical discourse must be pointed out regardless of where they appear.

November 1, 2007 Posted by | General Discourse, George W. Bush, Iraq War | , , , | Leave a comment

Colbert Denied By Democrats

By Theo O’Brien

Stephen Colbert’s highly publicized attempt to run for Presidency of the United States seems to have come to an abrupt end. The South Carolina Democratic Party decided Thursday that Colbert did not meet the criteria of having a strong chance at winning—possibly because he has only applied to run in South Carolina.

 

One of Colbert’s opponents on the executive council, Charleston Democratic party chairman Waring Howe, defended the decision.

‘Stephen Colbert clearly didn’t qualify under our rules, and it would have been a mistake and wrong to violate our rules,’ he said.” (1)

 

This obstacle in the pundit’s campaign is especially devastating, as he has opted not to run for in the Republican primary citing the $35,000 fee. Maybe revenue from his new book, I Am America (And So Can You!),” will give him the funds he needs to get on the ballot as a Republican.

Additional Commentary by Nathan Schmitt

The [Democratic] party’s executive council met Thursday afternoon in Columbia to decide which candidates met the criteria to be placed on the ballot, and Colbert didn’t make the cut, executive director Joe Werner said.

Colbert has said he will not file for the Republican party ballot because of the $35,000 fee, so the move likely ends his bid to officially run for president in South Carolina.” (1)

This highlights and interesting and probably unintended (by the framers of the constitution, that is) loophole in the democratic system we have developed in the United States. I’m by no means the first to point this out, but I definitely think it’s worth mentioning.

I’ve heard many people say, “The wonderful thing about the U.S. is that anyone can run for President.” This story seems to bring this statement into question. Sure, technically anyone can run as an individual or even through a minor party, but as the current system is set up, can anyone truly believe they have a chance at winning as such a candidate?

That’s not to say that these candidates can’t influence politics; they certainly can in many ways. But, if the two dominant parties filter the candidates in such a way, is it possible to claim and substantiate that anyone can become President? To be fair, the candidates are representative of the respective parties, so it doesn’t seem fair to blame it solely on the parties. But what does this mean about our democratic system as a whole?

November 1, 2007 Posted by | 2008 Election, Nathan Schmitt, Stephen Colbert, Theo O'Brien | , , | 1 Comment

Dream Theater: “The Answer Lies Within” (Video)

By Nathan Schmitt

This video is of one of my favorite songs, “The Answer Lies Within,” by one of my favorite bands, Dream Theater. This was recorded at New York City’s radio City Music Hall on April 1, 2006 with a full orchestra behind them.

Dream Theater: “The Answer Lies Within”

“Look around
Where do you belong
Don’t be afraid
You’re not the only one

Don’t let the day go by
Don’t let it end
Don’t let a day go by in doubt
The answer lies within

Life is short
So learn from your mistakes
And stand behind
The choices that you make

Face each day
With both eyes open wide
And try to give
Don’t keep it all inside

Don’t let the day go by
Don’t let it end
Don’t let a day go by in doubt
The answer lies within

You’ve got the future on your side
You’re gonna be fine now
I know whatever you decide
You’re gonna shine

Don’t let the day go by
Don’t let it end
Don’t let a day go by in doubt
You’re ready to begin
Don’t let a day go by in doubt
The answer lies within.”

November 1, 2007 Posted by | music, Nathan Schmitt, Video | , , | Leave a comment