Thursday, January 20, 2005

The Inaugural Speech & Coverage 

There was some kind of disruption during the inaugural speech, but the crowd cheered over it and cheered louder when some signs were taken down and some people were led away. Here are a few of my favorite parts of the president's speech:
The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands. The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world.

America's vital interests and our deepest beliefs are now one. From the day of our Founding, we have proclaimed that every man and woman on this earth has rights, and dignity, and matchless value, because they bear the image of the Maker of Heaven and earth. Across the generations we have proclaimed the imperative of self-government, because no one is fit to be a master, and no one deserves to be a slave. Advancing these ideals is the mission that created our Nation. It is the honorable achievement of our fathers. Now it is the urgent requirement of our nation's security, and the calling of our time.

We will persistently clarify the choice before every ruler and every nation: The moral choice between oppression, which is always wrong, and freedom, which is eternally right. America will not pretend that jailed dissidents prefer their chains, or that women welcome humiliation and servitude, or that any human being aspires to live at the mercy of bullies.

In America's ideal of freedom, the exercise of rights is ennobled by service, and mercy, and a heart for the weak. Liberty for all does not mean independence from one another. Our nation relies on men and women who look after a neighbor and surround the lost with love. Americans, at our best, value the life we see in one another, and must always remember that even the unwanted have worth. And our country must abandon all the habits of racism, because we cannot carry the message of freedom and the baggage of bigotry at the same time.

We have known divisions, which must be healed to move forward in great purposes - and I will strive in good faith to heal them. Yet those divisions do not define America. We felt the unity and fellowship of our nation when freedom came under attack, and our response came like a single hand over a single heart. And we can feel that same unity and pride whenever America acts for good, and the victims of disaster are given hope, and the unjust encounter justice, and the captives are set free.

We go forward with complete confidence in the eventual triumph of freedom. Not because history runs on the wheels of inevitability; it is human choices that move events. Not because we consider ourselves a chosen nation; God moves and chooses as He wills. We have confidence because freedom is the permanent hope of mankind, the hunger in dark places, the longing of the soul. When our Founders declared a new order of the ages; when soldiers died in wave upon wave for a union based on liberty; when citizens marched in peaceful outrage under the banner "Freedom Now" - they were acting on an ancient hope that is meant to be fulfilled. History has an ebb and flow of justice, but history also has a visible direction, set by liberty and the Author of Liberty.

I thought the speech well done and rather well delivered... with the one protest marring the end of the speech.

Update: Dan Rather is on CBS complaining now because President Bush didn't write his own speech. "Is it too much to ask," says Mr. Rather, "that a President write his own Inaugural address?" The other reporters point out that they are the President's thoughts and that all modern presidents have speech writers.

Update: Peter Jennings and Cokie Roberts and George Stephanopolis and company are on ABC discussing Tyranny vs. Terror and how other countries will feel about the speech, other countries like China and Saudi Arabia and Egypt and Russia. Peter Jennings says Bush's speech will be seen as a threat to other countries and ABC is talking about the hypocrisy of America in talking about freedom, but having relations with Saudi Arabia.

Update: Brian Williams and Tim Russert are on NBC discussing how it was an easy speech to give, but rather impossible to implement. Doris Kearns Goodwin, the historian, is saying it was a Democrat speech, not a Republican speech. She says that Bush's tax cuts and the international distrust birthed of our intervention in Iraq make Bush's ideas more difficult, if not impossible, to implement. She says we don't have the money or the cooperation to move ahead. Russert is calling Bush simplistic in his views. Brian Williams brings up Ohio and how the vote for Bush is not a mandate.

Update: Brian Williams is talking with Michael Deaver (R) and Joe Lockhart (D) and Tim Russert on NBC about why Bush is so hated by Democrats... saying that Bush bites their hands everytime they reach out. Lockhart says that if Bush wants to achieve the things in his speech, he will have to reach out to the Democrats.

Update: CBS is talking about the Supreme Court now. "No matter who Bush nominates to replace Renquist on the Supreme Court, it will be controversial. There will be a huge fight no matter who it is." "The Democrats will fight whomever Bush nominates for Chief Justice."

Why, why, why can't anyone talk about anything positive on a day as bright as this... the first day of a new presidency.

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