Wednesday, December 26, 2007

What They Said in 2000

Politicians say lots of things in their campaign speeches. You expect them to give a list of reasons why they would be better than their opponent. So, when George W. Bush became the Republican nominee for President in 2000, it was not surprising that he would declare in his acceptance speech all the ways that he would be a better President than Al Gore. No, the surprising part is how ironically things turned out.

Look at some of the things W said when he got the GOP nomination in 2000:

  • We have seen a steady erosion of American power and an unsteady exercise of American influence. Our military is low on parts, pay and morale. If called on by the commander-in-chief today, two entire divisions of the Army would have to report, "Not ready for duty, sir." This administration had its moment, they had their chance, they have not led. We will.
  • Our generation has a chance to reclaim some essential values, to show we have grown up before we grow old. But when the moment for leadership came, this administration did not teach our children, it disillusioned them. They had their chance. They have not led. We will.
  • A generation shaped by Vietnam must remember the lessons of Vietnam: When America uses force in the world, the cause must be just, the goal must be clear, and the victory must be overwhelming.
  • I believe in tolerance, not in spite of my faith, but because of it. I believe in a God who calls us not to judge our neighbors but to love them.
  • That background may lack the polish of Washington. Then again, I don't have a lot of things that come with Washington. I don't have enemies to fight. I have no stake in the bitter arguments of the last few years. I want to change the tone of Washington to one of civility and respect.
  • After all of the shouting and all of the scandal, after all the bitterness and broken faith, we can begin again.
  • So when I put my hand on the Bible, I will swear to not only uphold the laws of our land, I will swear to uphold the honor and dignity of the office to which I have been elected, so help me God.
And there was also this ironic observation by Dick Cheney when he accepted the Republican nomination for Vice-President in 2000:
  • In Washington today, politics has become war by other means, an endless onslaught of accusation.

Considering these words after 7 years of their mis-administration, I have to give them their due. Heckuva job, Dick and W! Mission Accomplished!

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