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The W - Current Events & Politics - What's the hub bub?
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StaggerLee
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Since: 3.10.02
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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.09
http://www.whitehouse.gov/MediaResources/PreparedSchoolRemarks/

So the White House finally gets around to releasing the speech that Obama will deliver to school children. And, as usual, the far right has made a mountain out of a mole hill.
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Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.24

Our local school district is allowing parents to "opt-out" of letting their children watch the POTUS speech in the classroom on Tuesday morning, and, if they choose to have their children not watch the speech, an "appropriate alternative will be provided."

(The our district also announced additional teacher layoffs, so... fun times in the Santa Barbara School District.)



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CRZ
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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.85
I think finally is a key word here. Perhaps if they had released it a few weeks back they could have prevented a lot of "discussion" - but then again, perhaps the speech was a whole lot different a few weeks back before folks started asking questions. I'm sure the possibility occurred to you...but then again, starting a thread here to make a jab at the "far right" leads me to believe that maybe the possibility HADN'T occurred to you.





StaggerLee
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Since: 3.10.02
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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.09
CRZ, I am a member of the "far right" and was ashamed at how people reacted.
AWArulz
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Since: 28.1.02
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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.63
as am I. I worry about the President pitching the kids on Health care though. But if he does the "stay in school, work hard" thing, not a problem. I saw Newt is on record as having no problem. But the ones who are negative, Beck, Hanity and some others, know that the president has some history of slipping in his ideas and policies when doing other things - look at a couple of his commencement speeches.



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drjayphd
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You wanted the best, you got... Out of Context Quote of the Week: FROM THE VAULTS.

"I just want the ability to crush a man's neck with my thighs." (JST)


    Originally posted by AWArulz
    But the ones who are negative, Beck, Hanity and some others, know that the president has some history of slipping in his ideas and policies when doing other things - look at a couple of his commencement speeches.


The ones who are negative also have quite the history themselves of doubting even the most rational explanations. Obama, or anyone else, would be insane to try to politicize a speech such as this. As would commentators who insist on the existence of an agenda where there clearly is none.

EDIT: The thrust of the above paragraph isn't saying you can't criticize or anything, but rather those specifically named and their history of going off the deep end in their criticism. Opposition voices such as Gingrich have at least been more reasonable about it. Besides, this is different from a commencement speech: there's no history of partisanship, for lack of a better term. If Obama deviates substantially from this script, he'll only look worse and there's no real reward, so he won't.

    Originally posted by CRZ
    Perhaps if they had released it a few weeks back they could have prevented a lot of "discussion" - but then again, perhaps the speech was a whole lot different a few weeks back before folks started asking questions.


Or perhaps it wasn't and they just didn't feel it necessary until then. The far right's got plenty of people looking to take shots at Obama at even the slightest inkling of an opportunity, and sometimes they'll make their own if need be. There's no reason to provoke people with an itchy trigger finger.

(edited by drjayphd on 7.9.09 2204)


AWArulz
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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.63
(deleted by AWArulz on 7.9.09 2026)
Joseph Ryder
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Since: 19.3.02
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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.97
    Originally posted by CRZ
    I think finally is a key word here. Perhaps if they had released it a few weeks back they could have prevented a lot of "discussion" - but then again, perhaps the speech was a whole lot different a few weeks back before folks started asking questions. I'm sure the possibility occurred to you...but then again, starting a thread here to make a jab at the "far right" leads me to believe that maybe the possibility HADN'T occurred to you.


What do you think may have been in the speech a few weeks ago?



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CRZ
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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.85
    Originally posted by Joseph Ryder
      Originally posted by CRZ
      I think finally is a key word here. Perhaps if they had released it a few weeks back they could have prevented a lot of "discussion" - but then again, perhaps the speech was a whole lot different a few weeks back before folks started asking questions. I'm sure the possibility occurred to you...but then again, starting a thread here to make a jab at the "far right" leads me to believe that maybe the possibility HADN'T occurred to you.


    What do you think may have been in the speech a few weeks ago?
I have no idea. Frankly, I'm a heck of a lot more interested in Wednesday's speech to Congress. 'course, I don't have any kids either.





redsoxnation
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Since: 24.7.02

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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.85
    Originally posted by CRZ
      Originally posted by Joseph Ryder
        Originally posted by CRZ
        I think finally is a key word here. Perhaps if they had released it a few weeks back they could have prevented a lot of "discussion" - but then again, perhaps the speech was a whole lot different a few weeks back before folks started asking questions. I'm sure the possibility occurred to you...but then again, starting a thread here to make a jab at the "far right" leads me to believe that maybe the possibility HADN'T occurred to you.


      What do you think may have been in the speech a few weeks ago?
    I have no idea. Frankly, I'm a heck of a lot more interested in Wednesday's speech to Congress. 'course, I don't have any kids either.





I'm still awaiting for him to perform his constitutional duty to provide a state of the union, as he made sure earlier this year that his major speech to a joint session of Congress was not a state of the union address.
Mr. Boffo
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Since: 24.3.02
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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.30
Google search: Constitution state of the union
First link: http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/sou.php

    Also, the five most recent presidents (Reagan, Bush, Clinton, G.W. Bush, and Obama) addressed a joint session of Congress shortly after their inaugurations but these messages are actually not considered to be "State of the Union" addresses. Reagan's 1981 address is called, "Address Before a Joint Session of the Congress on the Program for Economic Recovery." Bush's 1989 and Clinton's 1993 messages are called "Administration Goals" speeches. G.W. Bush's 2001 speech is actually his "Budget Message," and President Obama delivered a similar non-State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress on February 24, 2009.


In other words, you can keep waiting until next year.
Von Maestro
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Since: 6.1.04
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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.48
My wife is a Social Studies teacher, and the concern was less with the subject of the speech itself (although, as CRZ noted, we will never know what the speech could have looked like if there were no issues raised prior to today's speech) and more with the lesson plan provided to teachers to use in conjunction with the President's speech.

I am too busy (and way too lazy) to get the exact text of the lesson plan, but among some other questionable pieces were instructions for the teacher to ask students "what they can do to help the President" and "why it is important to listen to the President and other elected officials".

Regardless of political persuasion, those strike me as some fairly questionable directives coming from any free country's government, especially when directed at children.
Mike Zeidler
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Since: 27.6.02

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#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.79
    Originally posted by Von Maestro
    I am too busy (and way too lazy) to get the exact text of the lesson plan, but among some other questionable pieces were instructions for the teacher to ask students "what they can do to help the President" and "why it is important to listen to the President and other elected officials".

    Regardless of political persuasion, those strike me as some fairly questionable directives coming from any free country's government, especially when directed at children.


To me, those instructions sound exactly like something out of a 1940's, 1950's, or 1960's schoolbook, when it was still OK to like president/government. I know it's "cool" to distrust the government, but is it so wrong for schools to teach a little patriotism?

Perhaps your wife should re-study some of her Social Studies curriculum*. President George H.W. Bush actually asked kids to write him letters about how they could help him reach his goals, and nobody batted an eye. Why is the current President any different?

*I realize her curriculum wouldn't cover ever speech made by every President, I meant the pre-Nixon "America's great! Find your neighborhood policeman if your kitten is lost., etc." part.

(edited by Mike Zeidler on 8.9.09 1240)


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Since: 2.2.04
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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.08
I did read the original questions and they were harmless when taken in context. A big deal was made out of the one saying something like "What is the President asking me to do?"

When taken in context, that he was asking them to work hard in school, it's nothing. But it makes for a better story to take it out of context and play it up with conspiracy theories.

The fact that so many think he had some alternative agenda here and that his speech may have been totally different had this not been blow up is to me ridiculous.

You'd have to honestly believe that he had an agenda to "indoctrinate" kids that won't be of voting age until long after he's gone. In a less than one hour talk. Knowing full well that even if it hadn't been brought up before hand that it would most certainly be the moment after the speech.

How does that make any sense?
Von Maestro
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Since: 6.1.04
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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.91
    Originally posted by Mike Zeidler
    Perhaps your wife should re-study some of her Social Studies curriculum*. President George H.W. Bush actually asked kids to write him letters about how they could help him reach his goals, and nobody batted an eye. Why is the current President any different?


And when George W. Bush made a speech to students, the Democrats held congressional hearings. What is your point?

The reason this President is being held to the current standard, is very simply the timing of this speech. Following a month of campaigning & nonstop "Town Hall" meetings centering mostly around the healthcare issue (some meetings held by Obama himself), the timing of his planned speech aimed at America's youth set of people's already heightened sense of skepticism.

Had his speech been announced after a more mild summer, I imagine there would not have been near the reaction we have seen...
Mike Zeidler
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Since: 27.6.02

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#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.79
    Originally posted by Von Maestro
      Originally posted by Mike Zeidler
      Perhaps your wife should re-study some of her Social Studies curriculum*. President George H.W. Bush actually asked kids to write him letters about how they could help him reach his goals, and nobody batted an eye. Why is the current President any different?


    And when George H.W. Bush made a speech to students, the Democrats held congressional hearings. What is your point?


Huh, I guess they did. I apologize, I guess I should have done a more thorough job investigating before posting that.



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drjayphd
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Since: 22.4.02
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#17 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.79
You wanted the best, you got... Out of Context Quote of the Week: FROM THE VAULTS.

"I just want the ability to crush a man's neck with my thighs." (JST)


    Originally posted by Von Maestro
    The reason this President is being held to the current standard, is very simply the timing of this speech. Following a month of campaigning & nonstop "Town Hall" meetings centering mostly around the healthcare issue (some meetings held by Obama himself), the timing of his planned speech aimed at America's youth set of people's already heightened sense of skepticism.

    Had his speech been announced after a more mild summer, I imagine there would not have been near the reaction we have seen...


Huh? You mean to tell me that Hannity, Beck et al. wouldn't have worked their viewers/listeners into a lather about the address if Obama hadn't hit the road to promote one of his key issues earlier? (Or if he hadn't done so as recently as he did.) Honestly, I'm not sure that they would have needed the impetus to take shots at him, this is looking to be four years of sniping by certain commentators for any reason conceivable (or no reason either). Not that there weren't people on the left doing that to Bush, either, and if the criticism is baseless, it should be called out regardless of who's saying it about who.

(And since I'm once again trying to speculate on what's running through the heads of media figures who might not even be speaking their own beliefs, but what their audiences want to hear... I'll shut up.)



Peter The Hegemon
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Since: 11.2.03
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#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.03
    Originally posted by Von Maestro
      Originally posted by Mike Zeidler
      Perhaps your wife should re-study some of her Social Studies curriculum*. President George H.W. Bush actually asked kids to write him letters about how they could help him reach his goals, and nobody batted an eye. Why is the current President any different?


    And when George W. Bush made a speech to students, the Democrats held congressional hearings. What is your point?



His point is that Bush Sr. asked kids to write him letters about how they could help him reach his goals, and nobody batted an eye.

The hearings were investigating whether it was proper to use funds alloted to the Department of Education to pay for Bush's speech; no one was questioning its content or accusing him of indoctrination or anything like that. It was, in fact, mostly political grandstanding to criticize Bush's cuts to the education budget, but the point is that it had nothing to do with the issues now being raised about Obama.

And the media--you know, the media that people still accuse of having a liberal bias with a straight face--made nothing of it.
Von Maestro
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Since: 6.1.04
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#19 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.79
    Originally posted by Peter The Hegemon
    His point is that Bush Sr. asked kids to write him letters about how they could help him reach his goals, and nobody batted an eye.


I did a little digging to find the context in which Bush asked for letters to help him reach his goals. It's interesting when reading the actual speech he gave to see which "goals" he was referring to.

"Progress starts when we ask more of ourselves, our schools and, yes, you, our students. We made a start nationally now by setting six National Education Goals to meet the challenges of the 21st century. By the year 2000, at least 9 in every 10 students should graduate from high school. We should be first in the world in math and science. We need to regularly test student's abilities. Every American child should start school ready to learn; every American adult should be literate; and every American school should be safe and drug-free. Reaching those goals is the aim of a strategy that we call America 2000, a crusade for excellence in American education, school by school, community by community."

So when President George H.W. Bush closed his speech with:

"Let me leave you with a simple message: Every time you walk through that classroom door, make it your mission to get a good education. Don't do it just because your parents, or even the President, tells you. Do it for yourselves. Do it for your future. And while you're at it, help a little brother or sister to learn, or maybe even Mom or Dad. Let me know how you're doing. Write me a letter -- and I'm serious about this one -- write me a letter about ways you can help us achieve our goals. I think you know the address."

His request seems a little different than when simply providing the request without context.

    Originally posted by Peter The Hegemon
    The hearings were investigating whether it was proper to use funds alloted to the Department of Education to pay for Bush's speech; no one was questioning its content or accusing him of indoctrination or anything like that. It was, in fact, mostly political grandstanding to criticize Bush's cuts to the education budget, but the point is that it had nothing to do with the issues now being raised about Obama.

    And the media--you know, the media that people still accuse of having a liberal bias with a straight face--made nothing of it.


That is simply not true. The day after the speech, The Washington Post reported "The White House turned a Northwest Washington junior high classroom into a television studio and its students into props".

The Democrats investigation into the use of funds for the speech was specifically related to accusations of using the funds for "publicity and propaganda" (which the General Accounting Office ruled was not the case).

    Originally posted by Peter The Hegemon
    And the media--you know, the media that people still accuse of having a liberal bias with a straight face--made nothing of it.


I'll keep my straight face and look to NBC, CBS, The New York Times, etc... for stories about Van Jones prior to 9/6...
Peter The Hegemon
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Since: 11.2.03
From: Hackettstown, NJ

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#20 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.03
    Originally posted by Von Maestro

      Originally posted by Peter The Hegemon
      And the media--you know, the media that people still accuse of having a liberal bias with a straight face--made nothing of it.


    I'll keep my straight face and look to NBC, CBS, The New York Times, etc... for stories about Van Jones prior to 9/6...


Just be sure to notice the equal lack of any stories looking into the backgrounds of his Bush Administration counterparts. The bias isn't that there were no stories about him before 9/6; the bias is that there WERE stories about such a ridiculous issue afterwards.

As for the other thing: of course there was nothing wrong with what Bush said, just as there was nothing wrong with what Obama's lesson plan had. And none of what you provided really challenges my statement that the issue was the use of funds, not what he specifically said. (The Post quote was a somewhat different issue, but it doesn't accuse him of indoctrination or anything like that.)
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