• http://www.bushout.tv Luke Francl

    You can watch it on CSPAN’s website. Their site uses some funky Javascript or I’d link to it directly.

  • http://www.thorsett.org Steve

    The CSPAN javascript doesn’t work for me, but here is the direct link I feed RealPlayer:

  • http://joi.ito.com/ Joi Ito

    Just watched it. Very inspiring.

  • Anonymous

    Haha, they should have him talk for Kerry all the time. Maybe that would bring some charisma to his campaign.

  • Stijn van Dongen

    Reading the speech, it’s largely great material. However,

    I stand here knowing that my story is part of the larger American story, that I owe a debt to all of those who came before me, and that in no other country on Earth is my story even possible.

    Why on earth do people of the USA so often need to proclaim their nation to be the best and greatest? I truly find this an almost barbaric trait. Perceiving your country as the best on earth and being fanatic about it effectively shuts down all communication with others, and it must interfere with openmindedness. This particular quote is not so bad actually, and my judgment might be tainted by more excessive displays of patriotism. Still, it sounds nonsensical and hollow to me. There is no need to talk about the many wrongs here; every country, including the USA, has its share of wrongs and rights. I assume you cannot win elections in the USA without a sufficient dose of patriotism though, and I do hope that Kerry will win.

  • JB Clapp

    I concur with Lessig, it was an amazing speech. Mr. Obama has the perfect blend of charisma, intelligence and the ability to communicate.

  • Nate

    Agreed, great speech, great speaker.

    And yes, Stijn is correct, it is silly to say what he said about the USA. It’s just political hyperbole. Usually spoken by people who haven’t a clue what other countries are actually like. I find that the less people travel, the more they are convinced their country is the very best. The more people travel, the more they realize that we are all humans, all countries have good and bad, and it’s silly to go around saying, “We’re number 1!”

  • Anonymous

    So what’s the solution to the “Remember” link’s Sunday puzzle?

  • Karl

    I find it odd that no one has mentioned how Mr. Obama’s speech deliberately contradicts the entire ‘Two Americas’ rhetoric of Senator Edward’s primary campaign. It’s disingenuous of the ticket to have a man give a keynote address that at its heart is completely antithetical to the thesis of one of the member’s core philosophies only a few months ago and to offer no explaination. Any thoughts?


  • Nate

    What contradictions? We’re all Americans, but the Democrats are saying the Republicans are trying to divide us economically. They wish to stop that division, and in the process reaffirm that we are all in this together. The Bush White House is a dividing force, they want to be a uniting force because we are actually all just one America. How is this contradictory?

  • ted

    I long for a day when an American president would not have to invoke XIX century romantic notions of patriotism and the will of God in order to get elected. But, alas, what can one do? Hope Kerry wins.

  • Stephen Cochran

    Stijn, stand up at a podium and say “America isn’t the greatest country” and see how fast you get elected. Hyperbole or not, that type of drumbeating language is required by the electorate.

  • Anonymous


    I understand, as my previous last sentence might indicate. It’s scary though, the drumbeating language. I can only associate drumbeating with some of the worst times this world has seen, and crowds blindly following their leaders or their instincts. But I don’t want to pursue that heavy-handed point. It is a bit sad to see the inevitability of it all, and how much the campaigns for the USA presidency revolve around advertising and image building.

    Still, your example of saying “America isn�t the greatest country� does not seem to the point to me. I was not suggesting that, and I find it in fact as silly as claiming the opposite. There is no sense in ranking nations in greatness. Rereading the speech, there were some other gems, such as

    the constitutional freedoms that have made our country the envy of the world

    Hyperbolic indeed. I cannot get used to it :(

  • http://oknarb.web-log.nl Branko Collin

    Stijn, patriotism is a part of politics, as has been noted by others.

    Also, I am sure that if you held a poll here, 80% or more of the Dutch people would say that The Netherlands are the greatest place on earth. If you probed a little further, those voting Yes would give as one of the reasons our ability to remain neutral and tolerant, and to refrain from unfettered patriotism.

    Wouldn’t you agree? ;-)

  • Anonymous

    Obama is right in saying that the USA is the greatest country in the world. He is the son of an immigrant. Sons of minority immigrants, as a group, have gone farther in America than in any other country in the world. By far.

  • Joe Baby

    It was a fine speech, no doubt…but noting that it was one of the best during this election cycle shows how mediocre most of our politicians are.

    (Can you remember one line from the speech? Will you remember any statement a year from now, or just that BO is one smooth cat?)

    Not to mention that BO did contradict several contemporary Demo themes.

  • http://alabut.com/ Al Abut

    Sons of minority immigrants, as a group, have gone farther in America than in any other country in the world. By far.

    Eh, is that so? Sheesh… I’m confused, why do so many people think America invented immigration and assimilation? It’s like they think it doesn’t even happen in other countries.

  • Stijn van Dongen


    For people to love their country is a great thing. There are many countries loved by the people living in it. Then, being polled is a different matter than a politician speaking at a large stage. I well understand there is no other way possible. I also think there is no way around it that this mindset is at times a strong dividing force, when it surfaces in international politics. This does seem to apply almost exclusively to Republicans though. About the Dutch :) oh well, the (perceived) tolerancy has been a hot topic lately.

  • http://blog.evankai.com Kevin Reynen

    If Jack Ryan were still in the race and Obama wasn’t a sure thing, would he have been asked to speak?

  • Rantage

    Obama gave an outstanding speech. I just wish that the Democratic party and their platform was as honest and forthcoming. He strikes me as the antithesis of John Kerry: he’s charismatic and straightforward.

  • ted

    In hindsight, I think Dean’s biggest mistake was to start from the Democrat ticket. This country needs a progressive independent, it needs an escape from the fake political binary its locked in. And I agree with Stijn that ‘my country is the greatest’ rhetoric is a waste of time.

  • J.B. Nicholson-Owens

    Obama said:

    “When we send our young men and women into harm’s way, we have a solemn obligation not to fudge the numbers or shade the truth about why they are going, to care for their families while they’re gone, to tend to the soldiers upon their return and to never, ever go to war without enough troops to win the war, secure the peace and earn the respect of the world.

    Now, let me be clear. Let me be clear. We have real enemies in the world. These enemies must be found. They must be pursued. And they must be defeated.”

    So, the difficulty with the invasion of Iraq is that Bush didn’t send enough troops? This would seem to fit with the Democratic Party’s move to the right on the war: shift the debate away from whether it should have been done at all and whether Kerry and Edwards were right to help it along by voting for it (despite the millions in the streets who, without any confidential hearings, knew the war was built on lies and objected to the war). Move the debate away from the disparity between the Kerry/Edwards pro-war platform versus over 90% of the DNC delegates who object to this war (according to the Associated Press; I’m told a majority of the public also now think the war wasn’t worth it). Move the debate into how many troops to send: 20,000 more? Pick Bush. 40,000 more? Pick Kerry.

    It’s fortunate for Kerry that so many are willing to push aside their objections to the war and back someone who helped bring it about. After all, it’s imperative to get Bush out of office, even if that means replacing him with someone who supports his policies (pro-war, pro-NAFTA, pro-GATT, pro-NoChildLeftBehind, pro-NoHomosexualMarriages, and despite his DNC talk about health care being a “right”, Kerry is pro-HMOsuppliedHealthCareForThoseWhoCanAffordIt). This would seem to mean that the man is more important than the policies. Welcome to what happens when you sell your values short and get railroaded into a false dichotomy.

    With all this anti-war sentiment, you would think there would be more mass marches in the street. After all, the war goes on, soldiers (including the mercenaries) are still dying based on lies, Arabs are still being killed (though not quite as many as under the sanctions under Clinton, from what I hear), and there are plenty of corporations who are profiting from all this death and misery.

  • JB

    Kerry or Bush – Red Coat ort Blue Coat, but it’s still a coat.

    Red coat/blue coat – Your son Johnny doesnt want to put on
    his coat before going out to play. You tell him he has to wear it-
    he says no, you say yes – doesnt get anywhere. You gave him
    a choice of either, coat or no-coat. To ‘trick’ Johnny into
    wearing his coat, you give him a ‘choice’ – Johnny – you’re
    going outside – do you want to wear your red coat or your blue coat. He’s happy – he’s given a choice – he puts on his favorite color coat. You’re happy since all you really wanted to do was get him to wear the coat, regardless of color.

    Bush and Kerry – it’s all the same – Red coat or Blue coat.
    Bush if for GAATT, so is Kerry, Bush is pro-Nafta, Kerry too.
    Bush created the Big-Brother intrusive Patriot Act.
    Kerry voted FOR it (though he swears he’s against it – hello
    Senator Kerry, then why didn’t you vote AGAINST it).

    Bush – Kerry – Red coat/blue coat. We’re being tricked into
    thinking we are being given a real choice, just a Johnny was.

  • Anonymous

    Let me just say one thing to all those who are knit-picking at Kerry and Obama: Are you doing better now than you were when Clinton was in office? Pick Bush. Have things not changed or gotten worse for you than since Bush took office? Pick Kerry. Either way, politics is politics. Politicians, good or bad, are going to make bold statements, guarantees…they’re going to contradict themselves. Hello, let’s look at Bush before he came into office. He claimed to be the peace maker and gave people the notion he would never be pro-war. Then he gets into office and sends us into war without any of our allies to back us up? I just think this site is being overrun with narrow-minded Republicans trying to bash Kerry. Well y’know what? I’m 18 years old, a Democrat and proud of it. And no, I’m not backing up Kerry or Obama simply because they’re Democrat. I come from California where our governor is Schwarzanegger and he’s a Republican and I tend to think he’s doing quite fine. But Bush has not done ANYTHING good for this country except get us into a war we can no longer get out of. And by the way, who is Bush to say whether gays and lesbians can be married and whether or not a woman can have an abortion? Who made him God? I find this offending because I’m human and I can make my own damn decisions, thank you very much. Oh and as far as Obama goes, BRILLIANT, he hit the mark! If I lived in Illinois, I would vote for him.

  • john

    all obama’s speech sais is that he’s a good at speeches. in actuality, anyone can write a good speech if they try hard enough. all one has to do is appeal to the common good and unity in the nation and u can get anyone to think u r a good politician. speeches are one thing, actions are another. at least the bush administration does what it sais it will.
    the ideals spoken of in obama’s speech do not belong to the democratic party or any one party for that matter. unity is the ideal of the american individual. it’s just a shame that republicans and democrats polarize themselves so.

  • Anonymous

    I wonder whether those of you who see no difference between the major political parties have been paying attention. The differences are vast: I’ll give you just one of many examples. Bush and his neocoms have done everything in their power to trash the environment, the latest affront being the reversal of the roadless rule that Clinton imposed after nearly a year of public comment indicating that the vast majority of Americans favor the preservation of what little is left of America’s wild places. Kerry, on the other hand, has an excellent environmental record. This is an issue that’s very important to me and should be to everyone. (If you want to know how thinking Republicans feel about environmental issues go the web site of Republicans for Environmental Protection: http://repamerica.org.) I know the Democrats are far from perfect, but I’ll take the public interest over big oil et al anytime.


  • squeeze

    Joe Baby asked if anyone can remember a single line in Obama’s speech — I can remember several … but the one that stands out to me is this: “If a child on the South Side of Chicago can’t read, it matters to me even if it’s not MY child.” That’s the heart of it for me, and I’m SOOOOO relieved that at least SOMEONE gets it.

    loved the speech.

  • MW

    That was probably “The” best speech I have heard in my many years of following politics. Barack Obama embodies what this country needs honesty, vision and a different perspective than all of our past so-called politicians. Obama in a 6-minute speech laid out what he saw as a vision for America in regards to the Kerry/Edwards campaign (as a future senator in the great state of Illinois). It hurts me to see comments that attempt to reduce Barack Obama to a person who has mere oratory skills, rather that an intelligent, visionary who could unite our country into one America.

  • James

    When is Obama going to debate Jerry Kohn. Obama is not running unopposed, he is just pretinding to.

  • http://John Jules

    In spite of the fact that yes, Obama’s SPEECH shows only that he’s good at speeches, if you do some research on him you’ll find that he has done a whole lot of action. He has helped many, many people in his career so far, choosing to work in civil law rather than corporate law. Everyone who he has met seems to find him genuine, regardless of their political stance. He wants to make politics something more than what it is now, so that we can see the difference between politicians and not just become overly critical and cynical. I really think Obama is what this country needs, particularly with the lack of respect that Bush has created for the US worldwide. In my opinion, Kerry becoming President is only the first step towards Obama’s Presidency!

  • James

    Yes, Jules. But when will he debate Jerry Kohn?

  • Alphonse Sarkozy Tshiyoyo Mufoncol

    I love you Abama and you give hope , hope for Africa. I am african and I live in Congo Kinshasa. I feel like american, like a democrat americain when I am lsitening to you. I beleive , I beleive that America can do better. It is great moment in my life et I wish good like. Thanks a lot.

    your brother Alphonse S. Tshiyoyo Mufoncol

  • Alphonse Sarkozy Tshiyoyo Mufoncol

    I love you Abama and you give hope , hope for Africa. I am african and I live in Congo Kinshasa. I feel like american, like a democrat american when I am lsitening to you. I believe , I believe that America can do better. It is great moment in my life et I wish to you good like. Thanks a lot.

    your brother Alphonse S. Tshiyoyo Mufoncol

  • Jules

    I, like the rest of the world know very little about this Jerry Kohn (although his name is amazingly coindicental, did he change it recently?) as he has really done little in the way of Action for Illinois in comparison with Obama. And just for the record, Obama is not acting as though he has no opposition, it’s just the stories that state the fact that he has no major political candidate opposing him. In fact, I have read a number of articles stating that Obama is actually still fighting and working for the position as if there was a major candidate in opposition.

  • Nick

    I’m looking forward to a Kerry-Edwards White House for the next eight years, followed by an Edwards-Obama presidential ticket in 2012 — and finally, Obama for President in 2020!

    If you smell what Barack is cooking!

  • Nick

    Oh, forgot to comment on James’ repeated request for a debate between Obama and Jerry Kohn — who, in case you were wondering (which you probably are), is a high school teacher and Libertarian candidate for the Illinois U.S. Senate seat that Obama will inevitably coast into in November.

    In response to your post, James, let me point out that there are no Libertarians in the Senate or House, and that Libertarian candidates in general barely register on the polling radar. Add to that the fact that Kohn has already had a shot to get noticed, during his failed bid for state representative in 2002, where he raked in a measly 4.2% of the vote.

    Also, despite your own political leanings, you couldn’t possibly believe that Kohn’s vision for America would be all that appealing the general populace. For the information of visitors to this message board, Kohn’s platform includes the following:

    He believes virtually every government program can be stripped or tossed. He thinks that Medicaid and Medicare are bloated and inefficient. He says Foreign aid is unnecessary, and all U.S. troops deployed overseas should be returned to American soil. He would abolish the federal income tax and return to a gold-backed currency. He also would try to stop any effort to make health care available to all Americans.

    “Health care is not a right; it’s a service,” Kohn said, in a recent interview with the Chicago Tribune.

    Obviously these views aren’t shared by Barack Obama. In fact, I think you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone outside of America’s small circle of self-professed Libertarians who would even remotely agree with these ideas. I mean, c’mon, James, do you think that by debating Obama with these arguments that Kohn would actually attract mainstream voters to his cause?

    And here’s one more key thing to consider: even before he dropped out of the Senate race on June 25, the Republican candidate Jack Ryan was already trailing the charismatic Obama by 22 points in the polls, which goes to show that even an opponent from an established political party had no shot up against the Obamamania juggernaut.

    In short, there’s no conceivable reason why Obama needs to debate Kohn, as he is clearly not a viable opponent.

    If Kohn wants to gain media exposure through the debate medium, perhaps he should challenge an opponent of similar stature: Independent candidate and Harley biker Albert Franzen.

  • James

    Hi, Nick.

    Thanks for your answer, I’m sure it is on the money. It saddens me, though, that the mainstream voters (both conservative and liberal) have moved so far away from the from the U.S. Constitution. Our founding fathers wouldn’t even recognize the America we live in now.

  • Jules

    Well said, Nick. As an Australian/American citizen (ie. dual citizenship) who incidently also loves Canada, I agree with many of your points. In Australia we have a Private/Public system of Health Coverage in which every citizen is covered medically as a right, and those who chose to are able to receive Private Insurance similar to the Education system here. As a child in Australia, I always used our public medical system and it was great! I think it particularly admirable that John Edwards (I think) in his Convention speech directly noted the fact that the US is the only Western country without Universal Health Coverage, and that it can and should be changed.

  • Anonymous

    Brilliant Jules and Nick, just brilliant. Nick, I don’t think anyone could have said it better. Bravo!

  • Anonymous

    Obama is a sure thing because he’s a lawyer. Illinois is a state where trial lawyers run the show. It’s a place where Daley (a lawyer) names an honorary street after one of the nation’s most profitable trial lawyers (Corboy). It’s a state where Senator Durbin (a lawyer) supports tort reform by proposing a tax credit for the costs of lawyer-caused malpractice scams! (Nothing like getting taxpayers to shoulder buddy Corboy’s fees!) I pretty much hate this state that’s been my home for many years because of these shysters. You have been taken in by silvery tongues; I’m not.

  • Anonymous

    To the last anonymous poster – Barack Obama graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard Law, and headed the Harvard Law Review. With those credentials, he had his pick of prestigious law firms and probably could have been making $200,000 a year fresh out of school, and would have been on the fast track to partnership, where one can make millions.

    Instead, he chose to help inner-city Chicago as a civil-rights lawyer. Ignore his speech – research what he’s done. This guy’s the real deal, and you’re lucky if you end up having him represent you.

  • Paul

    I missed barack obamas’ speech at the Dem convention, just seeing short outtakes on the news. What I saw was a very impressive guy, a towering presence. I’ve read his speech online, and what I found most impressive is his call to americans, not to be divided, and to be your brothers keeper. This guy has to capability to reawaken america to its’ true ideals. I say this as a non american, dismayed by the attempts of the neo cons to whip up fear and divide people so as to achieve their selfish and imperialist ends. Just as a PS, I agree with the above comments on universal health care. If I were an american, a citizen of the richest country, I would feel ashamed that a small country like Ireland, not as wealthy as the US and certainly not a “COMMIE” country, can offer universal health care to all of its’ people. Americans need someone to challenge their pride.

  • Ray

    Responses to comments by different folks:

    Let me just say one thing to all those who are knit-picking at Kerry and Obama: Are you doing better now than you were when Clinton was in office? Pick Bush. Have things not changed or gotten worse for you than since Bush took office? Pick Kerry.

    Too simplistic. Remember, the majority of effects you see now, are the results of decisions Congress and/or The White House made years ago. Add to that the fact that much of the praises/curses given to one party simply because they were in the Oval Office at a particular time really should be levied on the party that controlled Congress back when the decisions were actually made.

    In response to your post, James, let me point out that there are no Libertarians in the Senate or House, and that Libertarian candidates in general barely register on the polling radar.

    Here you’re ignoring a couple of facts: Libertarians cast over 1/2-million votes in Illinois during the last presidential ellection and there are over 600 Libertarian party members in public office. That’s much larger than any other “third party”. So the Libertarians aren’t as small as most Republocrats like to pretend.

    You’re also forgetting that the federal government gave the DNC $40 million for their Convention and the media covered it at their expense (i.e. free advertising under the guise of news). The same is in the process of happenning for the RNC. Federal and State governments give money to the big two parties and candidates. State laws make it very difficult (and expensive) for non-Republocrat parties to get their candidates on the ballot. All of this leads to less time and $’s for advertising, evangelizing, so fewer people get the message, so fewer people vote non-Republocrat.

    This is made even worse by the fools that waste their vote by not voting for the candidate they really want. If everybody I spoke to that preferred a Third Party candidate actually voted for them, the Third Party numbers would be much closer to being “viable”. Voting for “the lesser of two evils” is a double disservice. First, it adds to the delusion that the winner’s views are strongly supported (or that the loser’s views aren’t less appealing than they appear) and, second, given that (with the exception of the recent Florida vote) the closest state tallies have one candidate winning by tens of thousands of votes. So, if you voted for the losing lesser of two evils, your vote was definitely wasted and if you voted for the winning lesser of two evils then your vote was lost among the overkill. It’s a disgusting negative feedback cycle that unfortunately won’t change until Americans get disgusted enough, or actually work-up the intellectual courage to vote their conscious. There’s also a third group, that don’t want to waste their vote by voting for “The Loser”. That’s so moronic that just mentioning it is enough.

    Now add in the incredibly low percentage of eligible voters that are actually registered and the incredibly low percentage of registered voters that actually vote. Give the embarrassingly small percentage of eligible voters that actually vote, there’s no way that you can say that the low number of votes for non-Republocrat candidates is any indication of the political leanings of the US population.

    A very informal poll of everybody that I’ve encountered that doesn’t vote showed that essentially 100% didn’t vote because they felt it really didn’t make a difference. Both of the big two parties are concerned with making government bigger, consuming more of their income through taxes, using the government to force their views on everybody else, lie every time they’re speaking, squash small busineses, etc. One thing that really surprised me was the number of people that understood that corporate taxes are really personal taxes because they lead to lower wages and higher prices. If you just listen to the media, nobody understands that.

    Anybody that manages to get on the ballots should be allowed to debate the other candidates, especially considering that Illinois is one of (if not THE) states with the most restrictive non-Republocrat ballot laws. The Republocrats should not be allowed to ignore and actively suppress Third Party candidates. I’m a firm believer that the poor voter turn-outs are due the candidates always being essentially the same warmed-over glop.

    I wonder whether those of you who see no difference between the major political parties have been paying attention. The differences are vast

    To what’s important to you, I guess so. But to a large number of people, both flavors of Republocrat are all about bigger government, more government intrusion, protecting their select favorite civil rights and ignoring the rest, saying they’re trying to help but only make the situation worse because the best and the brightest aren’t making intelligent decisions (the elected and politically connected appointed are making political decisions), etc..

    During the Clinton era, they suppressed 4th Amendment rights in a misguided attempt to reduce crime in government housing. The Bush Administration has suppressed 4th Amendment rights in a misguided attempt to reduce terrorism. Both parties get us involved in wars protecting their buddies, but ignoring worse situations. Both parties have had us hypocritically supporting “The Good Guys” in one conflict, only to support, in a different conflict, the people that would have been labeled “The Bad Guys” in the previous one.

    Believe it or not, to non-Republocrats, there isn’t a huge difference. Some say the difference is like the difference between cream of wheat and grits. Others say the difference is like the difference between cutting off every other finger starting from the right or starting from the left.

    If what’s important to you is true freedom, getting back to the powers granted to the government in the Constitution and not those that they’ve usurped, government not trying to force their beliefs upon you, protecting ALL of your civil rights, etc. then there isn’t a whole lot of difference between the two parties.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t know what Barack Obama plans to do in the U.S. Senate. (Expectably) his campaign web site is all political fluff. I tried to find out his position at “Project Vote Smart” but the site says he has repeatedly refused to respond to their requests for information.


    Most everybody on this list says he’s such a neat guy. Maybe.
    But what is it he plans to do once he’s got senatorial power? As I understand it, Keyes’s purpose is to smoke out his plans. The Illinois debates should be interesting. Has anybody seen a site where he is REALLY showing his issue positions?

  • david


  • Emily

    Obama is being tricked. He will take the fall for the failing economy…. It is all orchestrated by the Republican party. If he wins, you are only guaranteeing the election for a republican in 2012.

    Let the Republicans take the fall for what Bush has done. Vote for McCain.

    Think about it….