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Thread: Obama's Farewell Speech

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    tWebber Spartacus's Avatar
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    Obama's Farewell Speech

    Before we get underway, I'd like to ask everyone to keep the conversation civil. Respect the subject matter, and respect the other posters. Darth Executor and demi-conservative are asked not to post in this thread.

    http://bigstory.ap.org/article/5f2a5...pared-delivery

    It struck me as very typical Obama, for better or for worse.

    Some bits that stuck out to me:

    if every economic issue is framed as a struggle between a hardworking white middle class and undeserving minorities, then workers of all shades will be left fighting for scraps while the wealthy withdraw further into their private enclaves. If we decline to invest in the children of immigrants, just because they don't look like us, we diminish the prospects of our own children - because those brown kids will represent a larger share of America's workforce.


    First sentence is good, but bolded bit strikes me as a strawman-- it would have been a stronger argument without it. I wonder whether any of the left-leaning elite will actually take this implicit criticism of their economic self-isolation to heart (I confess I have little confidence that the right-leaning elite will, either, but the former group might at least have listened to the speech).

    For blacks and other minorities, it means tying our own struggles for justice to the challenges that a lot of people in this country face - the refugee, the immigrant, the rural poor, the transgender American, and also the middle-aged white man who from the outside may seem like he's got all the advantages, but who's seen his world upended by economic, cultural, and technological change.

    For white Americans, it means acknowledging that the effects of slavery and Jim Crow didn't suddenly vanish in the '60s; that when minority groups voice discontent, they're not just engaging in reverse racism or practicing political correctness; that when they wage peaceful protest, they're not demanding special treatment, but the equal treatment our Founders promised.


    The bit I bolded here seems like Obama's attempt to explain Trump voters in a charitable way. I've definitely seen worse attempts. In the passage overall, Obama seems to be trying to bridge the racial divide, though I wonder how plausible both sides will find it.

    Politics is a battle of ideas; in the course of a healthy debate, we'll prioritize different goals, and the different means of reaching them. But without some common baseline of facts; without a willingness to admit new information, and concede that your opponent is making a fair point, and that science and reason matter, we'll keep talking past each other, making common ground and compromise impossible.

    Isn't that part of what makes politics so dispiriting? How can elected officials rage about deficits when we propose to spend money on preschool for kids, but not when we're cutting taxes for corporations? How do we excuse ethical lapses in our own party, but pounce when the other party does the same thing? It's not just dishonest, this selective sorting of the facts; it's self-defeating. Because as my mother used to tell me, reality has a way of catching up with you.


    I really feel like adding an additional example aimed at the Left here would have really made this point better.

    That order is now being challenged - first by violent fanatics who claim to speak for Islam; more recently by autocrats in foreign capitals who see free markets, open democracies, and civil society itself as a threat to their power.


    Is this supposed to refer to Putin, or...?

    All in all, yeah, typical Obama, and what I would expect of a politician-- personal, certainly, but not genuinely humanizing. He's trying to define and defend his legacy, but he doesn't engage any doubts or regrets about his own conduct or decisions, which, frankly, is something I think we need more of, something which I think will be crucial in actually building civil public discourse.

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    tWebber MaxVel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spartacus View Post
    All in all, yeah, typical Obama, and what I would expect of a politician-- personal, certainly, but not genuinely humanizing. He's trying to define and defend his legacy, but he doesn't engage any doubts or regrets about his own conduct or decisions, which, frankly, is something I think we need more of, something which I think will be crucial in actually building civil public discourse.
    Agreed. I don't think Obama has any credibility with certain sections of America, and so he won't be able to bridge any racial gaps, or even improve discourse. He puts forward some nice ideas and principles, but I suspect many will say 'Why didn't you do those things while you were President?'. It can be seen as hypocritical to call for future politicians to abstain from the stuff you've engaged in, especially when you don't come out and admit you were wrong about some things.
    ...>>> Witty remark or snarky quote of another poster goes here <<<...

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    tWebber Mountain Man's Avatar
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    Good riddance.

  4. Amen Bill the Cat, Cerebrum123 amen'd this post.
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    tWebber Darth Executor's Avatar
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    Edited by a Moderator

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    Last edited by RumTumTugger; 01-11-2017 at 03:01 PM.
    If anyone does not love the Lord Jesus Christ let him be accursed. AYYYYYYYMEEEEEEEEEN!

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    tWebber Leonhard's Avatar
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    Bon voyage.

  7. Amen Cerebrum123 amen'd this post.
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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    His words were on the surface, fairly "nice" and "unifying" but reading "between the lines" you could hear a lot of digs against Trump and his supporters. Like the comment about disagreeing is fine but you need a common base, and then using the "Global Warming" denial as an example. That was a direct dig at Trump.

    Overall, his speech was so-so. It had some good points, some subtle digs, and some good advice. The advice, I felt was delivered to "others" and not to himself or democrats, but they should have been. He mentioned things like supporting the rule of law and order and seeing the good in others. Good advice for EVERYONE, including the BLM for instance.
    Bacon

  9. Amen Cerebrum123, RumTumTugger amen'd this post.
  10. #7
    Dept. of Redundancy Dept. Cow Poke's Avatar
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    I didn't watch it, but my daughter started texting me when it came on... I think she must be more "right wing" than me.

    I just asked how many times he referred to himself, and she said "a bunch". According to one source, it was 75 times.

    "Obama said “I” 33 times during the speech, “my” 20 times, “me” 10 times, and “I’m” or “I’ve” 12 times."


    1 Tim 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.

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    tWebber
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    It's good to be home. My fellow Americans, Michelle and I have been so touched by all the well-wishes we've received over the past few weeks.
    If all goes well and he does hand over office to Trump in a few more days, I wish him well from then on, with his family, as long as he stays off politics.

    There is a place called Obama Beach somewhere, if he retires as a bar man there, it would be great!
    http://notontimsblogroundhere.blogspot.fr/p/apologetics-section.html

    Thanks, Sparko, for telling how I add the link here!

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    tWebber seer's Avatar
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    I can't wait to see Trump taking the oath of office with O looking on!
    When the white flame in us is gone, and we that lost the world's delight, stiffen in darkness. Left alone To crumble in our separate night, When your swift hair is quiet in death and through the lips corruption, thrust to still the labor of my breath. When we are dust, when we are dust, when we are dust...


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    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    "I, Donald J. Trump, so totally swear to uphold the constitution of the United States of America, am I right? So nice. So nice. And I swear to uphold the office of the President of the United States of America, so we can make America Great Again. That's right! Great! More jobs! A wall! It's all going to be worth it, I promise you. So help me God."
    Bacon

  14. Amen Mountain Man, Chrawnus amen'd this post.

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