Open thread: Obama speech aims to save America, his own ass; Update: Transcript added; Update: Sullivan swoons

posted at 10:08 am on March 18, 2008 by Allahpundit

10:15 ET on all the cable nets and livestreaming on their websites so you have no excuse. If you thought Hewitt’s praise of Romney’s religion speech was embarrassingly effusive, wait until this love bomb detonates over Nutrootsville. I’d ask you who you think is apt to embarrass himself with the most squeamishly lyrical praise — the competition is stiff, after all — but we all know who it’ll be so let’s just wait for him to deliver. He’s already gone to the trouble of declaring preemptively that if the speech fails it proves that a Black Man Can’t Be President in America. Or at least, not one who looks the other way at hate for 20 years because it’s politically convenient for him to do so.

As noted yesterday, it appears the chosen one will be relying on the cherry-picking defense, which didn’t help Hagee with Andrew Sullivan (nor should it have) but should prove plenty persuasive for a reality-based community caught between Hillary and a wounded, discredited Obama as their nominee. Ed and I are going to try to liveblog this thing; stay tuned for video.

Update: If it gets boring, watch this instead.

Update: Drudge has the transcript.

Update: No matter how prepared for it you think you are, you aren’t. Excitable Andy never disappoints. Good lord.


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a whole lotta weasel language going on.

bloggless on March 18, 2008 at 10:52 AM

At least he did’nt call our founding fathers racist slave owners…or did he…..?

kcd on March 18, 2008 at 10:52 AM

Predictably, he includes a dig against the war — in a speech about race.

and “commentators”(Fox News) and “talk radio”.

cntrlfrk on March 18, 2008 at 10:52 AM

Oh look there he is..

j0 on March 18, 2008 at 10:53 AM

“We the people, in order to form a more perfect union.�
Two hundred and twenty one years ago, in a hall that still stands across the street, a group of men gathered and,…”

This is embarrassing…for B. Hussein.
Founding Father and Abe Lincoln speech?
Nefarious living speech is what it should be.

shooter on March 18, 2008 at 10:53 AM

So Martin Luther King would vote for Obama.

By the way, so would Bookter T. Washington, W.E.B. Du Bois, Dorothy Dandrige, Langston Hughes…

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 10:53 AM

FACT: Obama attended that church and listed to that hate monger, Jeramiah Wright, for 20 years.

FACT: Wright married Barrack & Michelle.

FACT: Wright baptised their children.

FACT: Only now that he is running for Prez and knows that Wrights teachings will hurt him, does he “denounce” some of the rhetoric Wright spews. Not 5 yrs ago, not 10 yrs ago, but now…

Question: Could you listen to this hatred for 20 years, if you did not buy into it?

kcd on March 18, 2008 at 10:19 AM

Yeah, Obama’s trying to distance himself now only AFTER the damage has been done seems disingenuous at best.

Yakko77 on March 18, 2008 at 10:53 AM

Wonder if Michelle Obama is proud of her country now. Or if we’ll have to wait another 44 years.

lorien1973 on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Pass the smelling salts….

MarkABinVA on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

*Booker T. Washington.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

ROCK STAR.

World B. Free on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

No flag on the lapel …. still hates America.

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

EM: Can we have a political speech that doesn’t end in a heartwarming and uplifting personal anecdote?

We’re talking about Senator Empty Suit, right? Then no.

amerpundit on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

In july, it’ll be 222, right?

lorien1973 on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

AP: ” In the end, then, what is called for is nothing more, and nothing less, than what all the world’s great religions demand – that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us.”

There is absolutely no such demand in Islam. I tellya, I’m loving this speech more and more! It’s going to open the door for discussing and exposing issues that have been getting the kid-glove treatment for far too long.

RushBaby on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

AP: So here’s the big insight of the speech: Blacks need to avoid letting their mistreatment turn poisonous like Wright’s and whites need to acknowledge that blacks have been mistreated. And this can be done by coming together to vote Obama.

Why do we have to keep acknowledging this? It’s been acknowledged plenty. When is personal responsibility going to be acknowledged?

CP on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

This guy talking about our founding fathers..lovely.

j0 on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

I thought the speech was good.

bridgetown on March 18, 2008 at 10:55 AM

He sounds like a high school teacher.

eforhan on March 18, 2008 at 10:56 AM

Why do we have to keep acknowledging this? It’s been acknowledged plenty. When is personal responsibility going to be acknowledged?

CP on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Ask The Race Card. He said the same thing awhile back.

Connie on March 18, 2008 at 10:56 AM

Whitey promoted slavery in the birth of our nation.

That’s gonna bring us all together. Yup.

Is that still going on today? Nope.

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 10:56 AM

Slavery stained the (GD) Declaration of Independence

faraway on March 18, 2008 at 10:56 AM

I chose to run for the presidency at this moment in history because I believe deeply that we cannot solve the challenges of our time unless we solve them together

…by becoming France.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 10:57 AM

Allah, you really need to get over your Romney hatred. It’s tiresome.

eaglesdontflock on March 18, 2008 at 10:57 AM

Someone please tell me what the hell any of this has to do with Wright saying such indefensibly offensive things. I guess, as they say, the best defense is a good offense….

World B. Free on March 18, 2008 at 10:58 AM

“My wife has me completely whipped, and I needed to be told that my pastor of twenty years was mad as a hatter, but I’m here to tell you a thing or two…”

Akzed on March 18, 2008 at 10:58 AM

Holy crap! Everyone’s a racist! Everybody Panic!

BelchSpeak on March 18, 2008 at 10:58 AM

Yep, and my relative died in the civil war -FREEING THE SLAVES. So, when reparations go around, I get some.

They keep bringing up slavery – it’s over. Seems like the more AA (Affirmative Action) we pay for for them, the worse the situation becomes.

stenwin77 on March 18, 2008 at 10:59 AM

SEARED!!

urbancenturion on March 18, 2008 at 10:59 AM

Can’t we all just get along?

Little Boomer on March 18, 2008 at 10:59 AM

Who has said Obama is too black?

Connie on March 18, 2008 at 10:59 AM

whites need to acknowledge that blacks have been mistreated.

I have no problem acknowledging that blacks have been mistreated. However, in doing so I am NOT acknowledging that I have mistreated blacks. Nor am I acknowledging that it is my responsibility to reconpense blacks for said mistreatment of which I had no part in.

BohicaTwentyTwo on March 18, 2008 at 11:00 AM

America’s original sin!? I have a big problem with that.

First of all, not all Americans were slave owners. Most were making there own way with their own sweat and blood. Was there slavery? Yes, but not the majority of Americans were in that boat.

Second, Americans didn’t invent slavery. It’s not an American concept. It’s been around since the dawn of time and continues to be a problem in many countries. Stating that it’s America’s original sin makes it sound like we invented the concept.

Maybe I’m looking at this in the wrong light, but I have a big problem when people blame America with an all-encompassing statement like that. I’m the son of immigrants who eked a living by farming in the desert. Never owned a slave. Why is this my sin? Or anybody who is alive today?

Luckedout on March 18, 2008 at 11:00 AM

No flag on the lapel …. still hates America.

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

Just be glad he refuses to wear one, or put his hand over his heart for the Pledge. I for one am glad he is so “honest” about that. God help us all when one of those left wingers finally figure out what it takes to win…feigned patriotism, feigned religious beliefs, claims of peace and unity, etc. etc. At that point we can begin looking for the anti-christ.

kcd on March 18, 2008 at 11:00 AM

EM: Here’s the rub. He hasn’t made the case why he should be President, but why his ancestry should be President.

Heh.

RushBaby on March 18, 2008 at 11:00 AM

If he’s half-white, and his wife’s got “slaveowners”‘ blood in her, does Wright half-hate them? Aren’t they partly part of the “problem”?

On one end of the spectrum, we’ve heard the implication that my candidacy is somehow an exercise in affirmative action; that it’s based solely on the desire of wide-eyed liberals to purchase racial reconciliation on the cheap.

HAHA. “Wild…and wide-eyed.” Loving the slip-up.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:00 AM

…just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed.

I’m so sick of hearing this lame excuse for an excuse.

Do I disagree with my pastor sometimes?

Yes. I am a five point Calvinist. I disagree with my current pastor and most of my former pastors about this.

We have different opinions on methods and meanings of fasting.

I like hymns, my pastor likes modern worship music.

He likes Country, I like New Wave.

We are able to live with these differences, in fact, they don’t often come up.

But if he went off in a racist or anti-American screed from the pulpit (or anywhere else), we would have words and either he would repent and retract those words or he would leave the church or I and my family would leave the church. (It would be him leaving the church because no one else in the congregation would put up with it either)

This argument has absolutely no relevance to the current discussion. Is Obama so used to be surrounded by fawning toadies that he thinks he can get away with this? Or is he so used to being surrounded by radical anti-Americans and racists, that to him his pastor’s comments are no more controversial than a quibble over theology or style?

29Victor on March 18, 2008 at 11:01 AM

It’s going to open the door for discussing and exposing issues that have been getting the kid-glove treatment for far too long.

RushBaby on March 18, 2008 at 10:54 AM

I think you are absolutely right.

txsurveyor on March 18, 2008 at 11:01 AM

Has anyone fainted yet?

JohnTant on March 18, 2008 at 11:01 AM

he’s changing his story now

bnelson44 on March 18, 2008 at 11:01 AM

29Victor on March 18, 2008 at 11:01 AM

Amen.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:01 AM

Does michell obama have to pay reparations to herself?

JiangxiDad on March 18, 2008 at 11:02 AM

Ah that devestating climate change.

j0 on March 18, 2008 at 11:02 AM

My DirectTV is on the fritz so i had to listen to it on XM Radio, it was so bad that I stopped listening to it..

Total Fail!

Chakra Hammer on March 18, 2008 at 11:03 AM

“Yes You Could Have” – That’s the Clinton and McCain slogan against Obama.

You could have left your black nationalist church at any point in the last twenty years.

You could have reached across the aisle in bipartisan efforts at any point in you brief political career.

You could have done any part of the thousand things you say others don’t.

And yet, you never have. No record, except the church attendance record. No accomplishments, except fine speeches. You could have done anything that might be seen as a down payment on your rhetoric, but you never did. Yes, you could have.

The Apologist on March 18, 2008 at 11:03 AM

Al Burack is a descendant of the Africans (and persumably Arabs) who sold their bretheren to slavery, which makes him more responsible than “Whitey AmeriKKKA”.

But then again, why bother with logic when you are pandering to mindless liberals who just want to feel guilty.

Aristotle on March 18, 2008 at 11:03 AM

I do not think MLK would vote for Obama, unless he votes by color.

davod on March 18, 2008 at 11:03 AM

I love this:

What’s remarkable is not how many failed in the face of discrimination, but rather how many men and women overcame the odds; how many were able to make a way out of no way for those like me who would come after them.

But for all those who scratched and clawed their way to get a piece of the American Dream, there were many who didn’t make it – those who were ultimately defeated, in one way or another, by discrimination.

Translation: What’s important is not those who failed but those who succeeded. Now I’m going to speak at length about those who failed.

viking999 on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

When the hell is he going to explain why he kept going to that church and listening to the hate speech for over 20 years?

Isn’t that why he’s on the podium today?

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

by doing God’s work here on Earth – by housing the homeless, ministering to the needy, providing day care services and scholarships and prison ministries, and reaching out to those suffering from HIV/AIDS.

…while simultaneously blaming on these problems on whitey, and fanning the flames of race war.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

Who has said Obama is too black?
Connie on March 18, 2008 at 10:59 AM

His grandmother, apparently.

Akzed on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

*blaming all these problems.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

Obama’s Kitchen Sink Speech

Connie on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

He’s kinda a good speaker.

frankj on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

So basically, Wright said some bad things, but he’s said good things too. So let’s just forget about it…move on, nothing to see here

JetBoy on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

“Yes You Could Have” – That’s the Clinton and McCain slogan against Obama.

You could have left your black nationalist church at any point in the last twenty years.

You could have reached across the aisle in bipartisan efforts at any point in you brief political career.

You could have done any part of the thousand things you say others don’t.

And yet, you never have. No record, except the church attendance record. No accomplishments, except fine speeches. You could have done anything that might be seen as a down payment on your rhetoric, but you never did. Yes, you could have.

The Apologist on March 18, 2008 at 11:03 AM

Nice.

RushBaby on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

He even alludes to it when he talks about his blood and how he has little pieces of American history in his DNA

But, see, it’s OK when he talks about it and uses it to his advantage. However, if there’s any sign it’s coming back to bit his ass, it’s a matter that is either, A) Racist, B) Not important, or C) Both.

amerpundit on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

Same old tripe from this ambitious pretender,nothing of substance but the usual business. Designed to take no stand or offer offense to his liberal supporters.

He is all wrong for America and these times.
We need Leadership, not rhetoric that appears
to rich in the weasel words.

The same old tripe, Socialist Racist tripe wrapped in the Flag. He cannot be trusted!

old trooper on March 18, 2008 at 11:05 AM

He’s not doing himself any favors.

I cannot believe his opening lines of this speech. This has everything to do w/his judgment and the company he keeps and whether or not 20 years and $$$ is a seal of approval of such an incendiary person, and he makes it about the founders.

Stick a fork in him.

Dubn8tr on March 18, 2008 at 11:05 AM

It sounded to me like he was playing the victim, and asking for civil disobedience.

Chakra Hammer on March 18, 2008 at 11:05 AM

AP: He would have ignored it happily enough if Brian Ross and Fox hadn’t laid this crap right on his plate.

Truth and consequences.

Buy Danish on March 18, 2008 at 11:05 AM

You can hear Rev Wright’s cadences in Obama’s oratory.

bnelson44 on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

Where’s Checkers?

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

I’ve heard that “He was a marine” so much that I’m sick of it. It’s irrelevant. A lot of folks were Marines and most of them don’t spew hate America rhetoric.

Oldnuke on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

He’s kinda a good speaker.

frankj on March 18, 2008 at 11:04 AM

I think it’s more his style and delivery are good…but what he’s saying, just a bunch of sweet icing covering up a bitter cake.

JetBoy on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

America’s original sin!? I have a big problem with that.
Luckedout on March 18, 2008 at 11:00 AM

I do too! As a matter of fact, there would not have been slavery in America to begin with if their own people in Africa had not sold them! It still goes on in countries all over the world yet it ended here generations ago but you don’t hear them calling out those countries! How about beginning with repartations from Africa, since THAT is where the slavery began!

kcd on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

LOL, what did he just say?? Family to him??

j0 on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

Technical question: how do I keep the live chat from jumping to the first post every time a new comment is posted?

JDScott on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

I have brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, uncles and cousins, of every race and every hue, scattered across three continents, and for as long as I live, I will never forget that in no other country on Earth is my story even possible.

Obambi

And, yet, I distill all of this diversity and complexity down to a single word, and single notion, a single race: black. I belong to a racist, segregationist, black church (their own definition), the church of blackness.

What a waste…

Jaibones on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

BTW, Hitler and Lenin were powerful speakers but not to be trusted either!

old trooper on March 18, 2008 at 11:07 AM

The guy just killed it right there.

j0 on March 18, 2008 at 11:07 AM

Obama says Wright may have anti-American, anti-semitic and anti-white views, but if we knew him better we’d realize he has redeeming values too.

That argument would justify a 20-year mentorship with Hugo Chavez or David Duke?

petefrt on March 18, 2008 at 11:07 AM

This speech is going over like a fart in church.

Matticus Finch on March 18, 2008 at 11:07 AM

WOW,calling his grandmother a racist

WoosterOh on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

Just as I thought, he can’t let go of Wright

bnelson44 on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

The guy just killed it right there.

j0 on March 18, 2008 at 11:07 AM

What? Help a brotha out.

Oh wait, I probably can’t say that…

Darksean on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

“Not once have I heard him speak in derogatory terms.”

Maybe Obambi doesn’t attend very often, or dozes off during the sermon.

Not once? Hard to swallow. Really hard to swallow.

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

Some will see this as an attempt to justify or excuse comments that are simply inexcusable. I can assure you it is not.

Oh. Well, thank you.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

“I’ve never heard him say anything derogatory about anything ethnic group.”

“I can no easier disown him than I could my white grandmother.”

This guy is a piece of work.

Dubn8tr on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

He is equating the words of his grandmother to that of a leader of a church? This guy is dishonest.

geckomon on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

Slavery still exists in Africa!

Chakra Hammer on March 18, 2008 at 11:08 AM

This speech is going over like a fart in church.

Matticus Finch on March 18, 2008 at 11:07 AM

Or in his church, like an American flag.

amerpundit on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

My priest thinks capital punishment is wrong. I disagree. But he doesn’t rave, rant and preach about capital punishment Sunday after Sunday after Sunday for years and years.

Sorry, Mr. O you didn’t sway me one bit. Wright is still a bigot.

Ellen on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

The Politics of Oppression

Connie on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

“crazy uncle – strengthens his faith” in what?

hotdax on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

What a waste…

Jaibones on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

B.O. is a tragic figure. There is no other way around that. However, for the good of the nation, he must be stopped.

JiangxiDad on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

Clap, clap, clap …. cue the choir.

fogw on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

reflect the complexities of race in this country that we’ve never really worked through

No, it reflects that your pastor is a bigot, and the cheering congregation’s full of bigots.

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:09 AM

If you hold Rev Wright accountable for what he said, you’re no better than Rev Wright!

Um….what?

World B. Free on March 18, 2008 at 11:10 AM

Segregated Church is OK

WoosterOh on March 18, 2008 at 11:10 AM

fear of black men? his own mother? say it so

hotdax on March 18, 2008 at 11:10 AM

In my first book, Dreams From My Father, I described the experience of my first service at Trinity:

“People began to shout, to rise from their seats and clap and cry out, a forceful wind carrying the reverend’s voice up into the rafters….And in that single note – hope! – I heard something else; at the foot of that cross, inside the thousands of churches across the city, I imagined the stories of ordinary black people merging with the stories of David and Goliath, Moses and Pharaoh, the Christians in the lion’s den, Ezekiel’s field of dry bones. Those stories – of survival, and freedom, and hope – became our story, my story; the blood that had spilled was our blood, the tears our tears; until this black church, on this bright day, seemed once more a vessel carrying the story of a people into future generations and into a larger world. Our trials and triumphs became at once unique and universal, black and more than black; in chronicling our journey, the stories and songs gave us a means to reclaim memories that we didn’t need to feel shame about…memories that all people might study and cherish – and with which we could start to rebuild.”

1. Daniel wasn’t a Christian, he was a Jew.

2.

Those stories – of survival, and freedom, and hope – became our story, my story

The survival & freedom were because of God’s provision and grace. The hope was hope in God, not in people, not in community or politics, not in race.

And what did he have to survive? Hawaii? Michelle? His father was from Africa, none of his ancestors have ever been slaves, none, to the best of my knowledge have ever been oppressed.

3. No word of Jesus, no word of Love or of Worship or the power of God. Instead, the Bible as pretty stories, as legends. It could have just as easily happened in a Mosque, Temple or public library.

29Victor on March 18, 2008 at 11:10 AM

He is half white, can I listen to only half the speech?

Wade on March 18, 2008 at 11:10 AM

McCain surely has Black supporters that can come out and call this guy on his B.S.

Doesn’t he?

cntrlfrk on March 18, 2008 at 11:11 AM

He is strongly playing the victim card. I really don’t know if this will work. It might.

bnelson44 on March 18, 2008 at 11:11 AM

I think it’s more his style and delivery are good…but what he’s saying, just a bunch of sweet icing covering up a bitter cake.

JetBoy on March 18, 2008 at 11:06 AM

Exactly. He learned how to work an audience from the good pastor, but there isn’t any meat on the bone. This isn’t helping him a bit, imo. His audience is going to be more skeptical than he is used to.

a capella on March 18, 2008 at 11:11 AM

So, to recap: Wright’s said some, er, disagreeable things. But it’s all the fault of mean old white folks!

emailnuevo on March 18, 2008 at 11:11 AM

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