Obama's And Cheney's National Security Speeches

Obama's And Cheney's National Security Speeches


It was must see TV yesterday, but I’m just getting around to it now. Ultimately, I think this did little to change any minds, but it did position Obama more firmly in the center of this issue and made Cheney seem further off to the right since he offered nothing new except justifications. Because he kept talking about how Bush’s policies prevented bigger attacks, and we’ve never seen anything to back that up.

Also, maybe it’s just me, but I think Cheney should have realized that his audience was broader than the American Enterprise Institute. Because his joke at the beginning about Obama’s speech earlier in the day being too long set the wrong tone, especially since his speech went fairly long too.

But hey, watch them for yourself and tell me what you think.

First Obama’s…

Then Cheney’s…


  • gerryf

    The whole thing has taken on some sort of surreal aspect. I cannot think of a comparable time in modern history when a current administration so constantly referred to the past regime or the past administration simply refused to get out of the way. Maybe Teddy Roosevelt and William Taft, but even that seems to pale in comparison.

    The extreme partisanship we’ve seen was something I’d hoped would go away, but it has only gotten worse.

    Now, let me start by saying that Democrats actually started this. I’ve got no problem with criticizing the Bush Administration, but from the inauguration on I think Obama and his people (put me in the group) are never too far away from pulling out the Bush card when it suits them (it is almost impossible not to whenever responding to GOP nonsense). It’s been endless. Hey, we know Bush and his crew were a bunch of incompetents….let’s fix things and be done with it.

    I think that Obama has tried to do this at times, and look forward, but even he has fallen into the blame Bush trap. Indeed, in Obama’s inaugural address, there were some very obvious, cringe-inducing nasty shots with Bush sitting right behind him. If anything, that tainted the speech for me. I understand that to paint a picture of hope, you have to recognize where you are, but anyone who has been paying attention (the 75 percent of the country that didn’t still support Bush) knew where the problem was and who caused it. Pointing behind you during your inauguration is just bad form.

    So, I can honestly say that I don’t blame Dick Cheney for standing up and taking some shots back. When Obama or Gibbs or Biden keeps holding your life’s work to ridicule, it’s bound to engender some snapping back.

    At the same time, I think, Cheney has shown a certain ingratitude. The guy should be going to prison at worst, or at least be ashamed of what he did. The man is incapable of self-reflection. No one, not even him, can look back on the last 8 years and not see a debacle.

    In some ways, I gave the Bush administration little leeway on how things were handled in the early going. No administration has ever had to deal with the situation they found themselves in. I’m sure it was hard. At the same time, there is ample evidence that the Bush administration used 9-11 to further its own agenda, and in so doing committed egregious acts against its opponents, the constitution, and humanity. I have no sympathy for them from that point on.

    They were no longer incompetent, but malignant.

    I’m sure Dick Cheney believed that there was an unwritten rule that administrations move on quickly, stop holding the previous administration up to scrutiny, and get on to the business of running the country.

    Now, personally, I think that Cheney should be tried for war crimes, but I am sure he thinks he’s been unfairly treated just because everyone keeps trotting out what a piss-poor job he did. His response is to repeat the lies he repeated so often because, hey, it worked for 8 years, and take shots at the Democrats.

    Ironically, the guy who has acted the classiest since the inauguration is George Bush, who has quietly stayed on the sidelines even when people have been taking shots at him almost constantly since he stepped on to the helicopter and left Washington.

    Wow, did I think that (George Bush=class) or did I just think that?

  • William

    I take issue with your comment on Cheney. He cannot prove anything at this point because the one person that could stop all this and make it go away is Obama, by releasing the memo’s. Obama wont. Why? Because it takes away the poltics of the issue. And Obama needs politics. He has no other substance. And as far as bringing up war crimes on Cheney and Bush? I’ll agrre to that as soon as you produce one shredof evidence. Meanwhile, the current president has broken with 6 of the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. He is the one that will forever be labeled as incompetent.

  • TerenceC

    Obama has to make the best of a bad situation, which he tried to do in this speech – but it would appear he’s on the verge of violating Human Rights.

    The more Cheney talks the more guilty he appears and the greater my belief that he’s simply afraid to be charged for the crimes we know (by his own admission) he has committed.

    I honestly believe these two guys are in separate wagons, but still in the same group that is circling the wagons around this issue.

  • Chris

    Uh they deserve ingraditude. We should be nice to them because their life’s work was evil and complete self-serving bullshit? No way man. The blame game is part of politics, but even before Obama was president, the republicans were already blaming him for their and our problems. At least he has some balls unlike most democrats.

  • Keith

    Gerryf — I am not so sure that the current administration is reminding the public of the previous administration as much as the previous administration is continuing to remind the public! Cheney needs to stay hidden, like he did for most of 8 years doing everything in secrecy. Tell me who is wagging his tail, and who is barking? Frankly, I think Cheney is just chasing his tail hoping the dog catcher does not get him!