Wednesday, August 24, 2005

The More Things Change...

...The more they stay the same. Here are some excerpts from a speech I find to be right on the money:

Ten days ago, [the President] admitted that although some people in this country seemed to be doing well nowadays, others were unhappy, and even worried, about themselves, their families and their futures.

The President said he didn't understand that fear. He said, "Why, this country is a shining city on a hill."

A shining city is perhaps all the President sees from the portico of the White House and the veranda of his ranch, where everyone seems to be doing well.

But there's another part of the city, the part where some people can't pay their mortgages and most young people can't afford one, where students can't afford the education they need and middle-class parents watch the dreams they hold for their children evaporate.

In this part of the city there are more poor than ever, more families in trouble. More and more people who need help but can't find it.

There are ghettos where thousands of young people, without an education or a job, give their lives away to drug dealers every day.

There is despair, Mr. President, in faces you never see, in the places you never visit in your shining city.

Maybe if you visited more places, Mr. President, you'd understand. Maybe if you went to Appalachia where some people still live in sheds and to Lackawanna where thousands of unemployed steel workers wonder why we subsidized foreign steel while we surrender their dignity to unemployment and to welfare checks; maybe if you stepped into a shelter in Chicago and talked with some of the homeless there; maybe, Mr. President, if you asked a woman who'd been denied the help she needs to feed her children because you say we need the money to give a tax break to a millionaire or to build a missile we can't even afford to use — maybe then you'd understand.

Maybe, Mr. President. But I'm afraid not. . . .

The difference between Democrats and Republicans has always been measured in courage and confidence. The Republicans believe the wagon train will not make it to the frontier unless some of our old, some of our young, and some of our weak are left behind by the side of the trail.

We Democrats believe that we can make it all the way with the whole family intact.

The orator in question? Mario Cuomo giving the keynote address at the 1984 Democratic National Convention. It's unbelievable, you can actually make this speech tomorrow and not change a word. If I were a prominent Democrat, I'd dig this up, get on my soapbox and read this verbatim.

Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss.


At 1:06 PM, Blogger Kenny Alias said...

If that "shining city upon a hill" phrase sounds familiar, its because he lifted it from a famous speech John Winthrop gave in the 1630s to Puritans coming to the New World in which he said that they were forming a pact with God to create a holy community.


At 1:17 PM, Anonymous K Wynn said...

We Democrats believe that we can make it all the way with the whole family intact.

However they may occasionally get caught with our wiener in an Intern, Movie Starlet, your wife, your neighbor, or even someone of the same sex.

At 1:18 PM, Anonymous K Wynn said...

*their....sorry, ever try to type fast at work and not get caught on the internet?

At 1:34 PM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Wow, nice find Kenny. I never knew Reagan was such a religious man...I just thought he was a moron.


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