How do you know when it was a decent speech?

Bush revises history in Inaugural Address; latest example of delusion

When a paragraph about American efforts for freedom drives his critics STARK RAVING MAD.

The biggest complaint seems to be that Bush said

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.

Well, no wonder the Left is outraged. I mean, he’s trying to champion freedom, for pity’s sake. Freedom! And he comes right out and says it. In public!

I first noted this paragraph on MO a couple of days ago. It brought what I considered to be a curious reaction from a fellow blogger. The discussion on that site continued, though not very productively. I’m still trying to nail down exactly what the problem is.

Bush was called “a fool or an idiot” for uttering those dreadful words. Read the whole comments section on that post if you’ve got nothing better to do, but I think I’ve narrowed the problem down to:

1) Bush was wrong because America hasn’t “always followed” the ideals he brought up, or

2) Bush was wrong because the Founding Fathers “proclaimed” those ideals, or

3) Bush was wrong because “lauded” the proclamation of those ideals, or

4) Bush was wrong because he didn’t use the word “equal” when he said “rights”.

Now, I’m not trying to be obtuse (well, okay, I am–but only a little bit) but I’m just plain mystified by this.

Ivins also writes

Nor is democracy necessarily the cure for terrorism. As a British journalist pointed out, if Britain had been following the Bush plan, it would have nuked us years ago for being the largest single source of money for the Irish Republican Army. Reality is so often much more complicated than George W. Bush thinks it is.

And sometimes reality is often much more simple than Ms. Ivins thinks it is, I guess. Or did I miss the news when the Bush plan nuked terrorism supporters? What’s she talking about?

And she writes:

It is extremely difficult to convince people that you are killing them (and torturing them) for their own good. How would you feel? The British medical magazine Lancet estimates Americans have now killed over 100,000 Iraqis. We don’t know for sure, because America has several policies that prevent anyone from keeping an accurate count.

As for the “how would you feel?”, see my post from this afternoon.

The number in the Lancet study is weird. Yes, I know all about the thoroughly discredited study released last fall. First, I’m mystified that she’d use it when trying to make a point, as everyone knows it’s total bunk. But even more mystifying is the fact that my newspaper (The Grand Rapids Press), Democrats.us, MyrtleBeachOnline, The Buffalo News (the top three hits on Google for the article), and the Creators Syndicate site all say

Americans have now killed about 20,000 Iraqis

instead of

Americans have now killed over 100,000 Iraqis

An error in judgment soon changed but not changed before Working For Change posted it? Or a change by someone else down the line? Weird.

Why does the paragraph about the ideal of freedom drive Bush’s opponents so nuts? And why can’t they seem to explain the effect?

Comments

  1. Alright, I’m not even an American, but the main problem I see (and what I suspect many others do too) is that what is said and what is done are two different things in our minds.

    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.

    The founding ideals of America are and admirable thing. The invasion of Iraq engineered by a lie: that weapons of mass destruction were a real and credible threat to freedom, and were being given to terrorists. That simply wasn’t the case. Now we’re seeing a rise in attacks on Americans because of Iraqi individuals who are fighting for their own countries’ freedom. What they are fighting for, in their minds, is the same thing as the French Resistance wanted in the seond world war. Their own country back. Instead of providing a solution, a problem was created when there wasn’t one before. For Bush to talk so much of freedom and values while actually having a track record of not providing it is frustrating – nay, well on infuriating.

  2. Daniel: WMD WMD WMD WMD. Keep trying. A lot of folks are buying that, so you’ll find some customers. Not Murdoc, though. See almost any of my posts on Iraq for my reasoning. Yes. The Iraqi individuals attacking Americans want their nation back, just like the French Resistance. The nation those individuals want is the Baathist-Sunni Iraq. They want it back very badly, and to get it back they attack not only Americans, but their own police and citizens. They need to blow up their own polling stations and kidnap and kill those that are working to rebuild Iraq. How many French citizens did the French Resistance blow up? Why are you comparing the resistance to the Nazi fascists to the fascists in Iraq? And, um, turn on the tele. Iraqis are getting their country back as we speak despite the best efforts of your resistance fighters.