Friday, September 10, 2010

Obama press conference: That means that people are frustrated and that means people are angry

I made the mistake of setting the DVR to record this on a local channel, where it’s all Holy-shit-San-Bruno-Is-On-Fire all the time. And by the way, fuck PG&E.


DIGGING AND GROWING. WHY DOES EVERY PRESIDENT TALKING ABOUT THE ECONOMY SOUND LIKE CHANCE THE GARDENER? “I just want to talk a little bit about our continuing efforts to dig ourselves out of this recession and to grow our economy.”

SEE, IT’S A SIX-YEAR PLAN BECAUSE IF IT WERE A FIVE-YEAR PLAN WE’D ALL KNOW HE WAS FLAT OUT BEING A COMMUNIST AGAIN: “We also announced a six-year plan to rebuild America’s roads and railways and runways.”

PLENTY OF ISSUES, YES; PLENTY OF PEOPLE OF GOOD FAITH, NOT SO MUCH: “I realize there are plenty of issues in Washington where people of good faith simply disagree on principle.”

WHAT HE UNDERSTANDS: “I understand there’s an election coming up. But the American people didn’t send us here to think about our jobs.” We sent them there to think about Ground Zero Mosques, right?

NAME OF THE DAY: His new chair of the Council of Economic Advisers: Austan Goolsbee. Hi-larious.

“If the election is about the policies that are going to move us forward versus the policies that will get us back into a mess, then I think the Democrats will do very well.” He thinks there could be an election that’s about policies? That’s so adorable!

A DIFFERENT ECONOMIC PHILOSOPHY? IT’S SOCIALISM, ISN’T IT? “And I ran because I felt that we had to have a different economic philosophy in order to grow that middle class and grow our economy over the long term.”

ALSO DOPEY, GRUMPY, SLEEPY... “Now, for all the progress we’ve made, we’re not there yet. And that means that people are frustrated and that means people are angry.”

THAT’S NOT A TUNE, THAT’S A WHOLE FUCKING SYMPHONY: “what I’ve got is the Republicans holding middle-class tax relief hostage because they’re insisting we’ve got to give tax relief to millionaires and billionaires to the tune of about $100,000 per millionaire”.

“And if the Republican leadership is prepared to get serious about doing something for families that are hurting out there, I would love to talk to them.” He thinks the Republican leadership could be prepared to get serious about doing something for families that are hurting out there? Just SO fucking adorable!

NO, THE QUESTION IS, WHY NOT? “Why hold the middle class hostage in order to do something that most economists don’t think makes sense?”

WHAT REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS USUALLY AGREE ON: “usually, Republicans and Democrats agree on infrastructure.”

Asked why he won’t just name Elizabeth Warren to the consumer protection agency, he decided to keep her hanging a while longer and also to undercut her publicly with, well I’d say faint praise but there isn’t any actual praise in here at all: “She’s a dear friend of mine. She’s somebody I’ve known since I was in law school. And I have been in conversations with her. She is a tremendous advocate for this idea.”

WHAT ONE OF THE THINGS HE MOST ADMIRED ABOUT BUSH WAS: “One of the things that I most admired about President Bush was after 9/11, him being crystal-clear about the fact that we were not at war with Islam.” And crystal-clear about the US not torturing people. And crystal-clear about there being WMDs in Iraq. Bush was “crystal-clear” about a lot of shit, is what I’m saying. A lot of shit.

HE’S THE REMINDERER: “And I will do everything that I can as long as I am President of the United States to remind the American people that we are one nation under God, and we may call that God different names but we remain one nation.” Also, fuck you, atheists.

ARE YOU SURE YOU DON’T MEAN YOUR SECRET MUSLIM FAITH? “And as somebody who relies heavily on my Christian faith in my job, I understand the passions that religious faith can raise.” So subtle about slipping in the reference to being Christian. So subtle.

WHAT HE DOESN’T WANT ANYBODY OUT THERE THINKING: “And I don’t want anybody out there thinking that it’s [Middle East peace] going to be easy.

Asked about Terry Jones, he referred to him as “the individual down in Florida,” “this individual” and “one individual in Florida”. This could be because 1) he’s trying to emphasize that Jones has almost no followers, 2) he’s forgotten his name, 3) he can never remember which one is Terry Jones and which one is Michael Palin.

INDIAN HUTS, WITCHES, AND CROSSES ON BLACK PEOPLE’S LAWNS, MAYBE, BUT NOT SACRED TEXTS: “The idea that we would burn the sacred texts of someone else’s religion is contrary to what this country stands for.”

UNLESS BY ATTENTION YOU MEAN BEING CALLED OUT IN A PRESS CONFERENCE BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: “And although this may be one individual in Florida, part of my concern is to make sure that we don’t start having a whole bunch of folks all across the country think this is the way to get attention.”

WHAT HE’S CONSTANTLY THINKING ABOUT: “And so I am constantly thinking about how do we create ladders for communities and individuals to climb into the middle class.” Ladder factories?

See if you can guess what country Obama is referring to here: “It has a multiethnic population that mistrusts, oftentimes, each other. And it doesn’t have a tradition of a strong, central government.” If you guessed the United States, you were probably listening to the earlier part of the presser when he was begging for the Republicans to stop grinding our central government to a halt, but he’s actually talking about Afghanistan.

Asked about dealing with corrupt officials in Afghanistan (that is, officials in Afghanistan): “the only way that you are going to have a stable government over the long term is if the Afghan people feel that you’re looking out for them. And that means making sure that the tradition of corruption in the government is reduced.” Way to set goals.

“And we’ve made progress on some of those fronts. I mean, when it comes to corruption, I’ll just give you an example. Four years ago, 11 judges in the Afghan legal system were indicted for corruption. This year, 86 were indicted for corruption.” Well I know that reassures me. Doesn’t that reassure you?

AND BY “MADE COMPROMISES,” HE MEANS “PAID MASSIVE BRIBES TO”: “Are there going to be occasions where we look and see that some of our folks on the ground have made compromises with people who are known to have engaged in corruption?

AND BY “A WINK AND A NOD,” HE MEANS “PAID MASSIVE BRIBES TO”: “Let’s make sure that our efforts there are not seen as somehow giving a wink and a nod to corruption.”

On trials of alleged terrorists: “there are going to be circumstances where a military tribunal may be appropriate... there may be situations in which somebody was captured in theater, is now in Guantanamo. It’s very hard to piece together a chain of evidence that would meet some of the evidentiary standards that would be required in an Article III court. But we know that this person is guilty; there’s sufficient evidence to bring about a conviction.” Just not in a real court. But it’s okay because we “know” this person is guilty.

STILL TO THIS DAY: “Al Qaeda operatives still cite Guantanamo as a justification for attacks against the United States. Still to this day.” That might be because Guantanamo is still in the indefinite-detention-without-trial business. Still to this day.

What about capturing Osama bin Laden? “we have the best minds, the best intelligence officers, the best special forces, who are thinking about this day and night. And they will continue to think about it day and night as long as I’m president.” Because on his last day in office, we still won’t have captured bin Laden, is what he’s saying.

Finally, he made a fairly strong defense of the “Ground Zero Mosque.” “And what that means is that if you could build a church on a site, you could build a synagogue on a site, if you could build a Hindu temple on a site, then you should be able to build a mosque on the site.” In fact, you could build a church on top of a synagogue on top of a Hindu temple on top of a mosque on top of a Burlington Coat Factory.

“we’ve got millions of Muslim Americans, our fellow citizens, in this country. They’re going to school with our kids. They’re our neighbors. They’re our friends. They’re our coworkers. And when we start acting as if their religion is somehow offensive, what are we saying to them?”

What indeed.

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