“I come to Berlin as so many of my countrymen have come before. Tonight, I speak to you not as a candidate for President, but as a citizen – a proud citizen of the United States, and a fellow citizen of the world.”

If you are not there as a candidate then what the hell are you doing there?


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12 Responses to “What?”

  1. kolby Says:

    Really? Seriously? Are we already this petty?

    Nothing he does between now and election day can be viewed as completely detached from the campaign, but in his speech he went out of his way to avoid the trappings of his usual stump rhetoric. You can’t possibly be wound up enough by this to really care.

  2. Roland Says:

    Words mean things. Besides, every gaff, stumble, itch that Bush made was broadcast everywhere. Even major gaffs by “The One” are only covered on Talk Radio.

  3. kolby Says:

    But this isn’t a gaffe. He was trying to move the discussion in Europe toward a position of cooperation in the battle with extremism. Like it or not, we need their help (in both the military and law enforcement sides of things). Europe (especially Germany) has been too stingy in troop contributions in Afghanistan. He was, in effect, asking the German people (with whom he is obviously quite popular) to do something they are not inclined to do. No other American has the social cache with Europeans that Obama does, so I don’t see why anyone would be upset by his actions.

  4. Roland Says:

    Popular? You mean by the crowds? Wasn’t there a rock concert before he took the stage there yesterday?

  5. Angry D. Says:

    Kolby, come on. The Obamination said he wasn’t campaigning, then he gave a campaign speech and solicited for funds. It’s a bald faced lie, like so much of what comes out of his mouth.

    I love you, man, but this is hardly defensible.

    Angry D.

  6. kolby Says:

    His speech was specifically aimed at the people of Berlin, who obviously can’t vote for him. I don’t see how this is a campaign speech. It didn’t focus on policy minutiae, but it was more than his standard stump speech. It was about his vision of the North Atlantic Alliance. It has a tangential relation to the campaign because his vision is different from McCain’s in several key ways (and because everything a candidate says is treated as a campaign speech). He didn’t attack McCain. It was as non-campaign a speech as a presidential candidate can give. And I must have missed the part about him asking for money. I read the speech several times and nowhere in it did I see that.

  7. Roland Says:

    He is only a Senator. I don’t see many other Senators or Reps going overseas and making major speeches like that on a daily/yearly basis. If it wasn’t a campaign speech, why were there Obama signs plastered everywhere?

    The fact is, if he wasn’t running for Pres, he wouldn’t even be there. THAT makes it a campaign speech.

  8. kolby Says:

    The campaign put out signs with Obama’s image on them to advertise the event. I don’t know where the crowd got their signs. Its not too hard to make one with a computer. I still don’t see why that matters. America needs Europe to come on board with regard to a lot of issues, and I don’t know why people are so up in arms about it (raw partisanship aside). Most presidents can’t draw the crowds Obama does (at home or abroad). People are intrigued by the man, for reasons good and ill. I have my share of worries about the vacuous nature of Obamania, but if he can turn people’s enthusiasm toward good objectives then I’m all for it.

    So if his speech was about why he thinks Bayern Munich and Werder Bremen are the teams to beat in the Bundesliga this fall it still would have been a campaign speech? If you think it was about the fact that it happened rather than what he said then I think we have reached an impasse. I’ll just say again that he obviously went out of his way to scrub the speech of partisanship as much as possible. And besides, Republicans made him go on this trip to begin with.

  9. Roland Says:

    The only reason he is drawing such crowds is the media’s love affair with him.

  10. kolby Says:

    That’s just absurd. I worked for Hillary Clinton. I’ve had my share of annoyance with the seemingly endless positive press Obama gets. But he draws crowds because he can give one hellraiser of a speech and because his (largely bogus) message of a new kind of (anti)politics speaks to the feelings of many young people who feel alienated from the political process. If the media gave John McCain the same level and type of coverage it has given Obama (I’m still trying to wrap my mind around the idea of John McCain whining about the press), people still wouldn’t show up in the same numbers. People like to hear a good speech. Good press obviously doesn’t hurt, but calling it the only reason is idiocy.

    On a related note, I think McCain may have actually been lucky to have been largely ignored over the past week. The events his campaign planned went off poorly and his newest ad was just plain stupid. He hasn’t figured out how to work in this political environment yet. My advice would be to try and look reasonable and reassuring while giving Obama plenty of rope to hang himself with.

  11. Angry D. Says:

    Really, Kolby. You don’t see how this was a campaign speech? So, I’m assuming that when it comes time to pull a lever in November, you’re simply going to STRIKE IT FROM YOUR CONSCIOUSNESS?

    Get real. Everything this meathead junior senator does is about campaigning. All he has EVER done is campaign. Every word he’s uttered within range of a microphone, every time he walks in front of a camera is because he’s campaigning. Being naive about his motive is no excuse for naivete about his methods. As Roland said, no other senator is over in Germany giving speeches right now. In fact, aren’t most of them here in America arguing about some kind of tax increase to bail out homeowners and whether or not to drill for more oil? Stunningly, I believe they are!

    You might want to read THIS: http://sweetness-light.com/archive/john-bolton-obamas-on-a-different-planet before you decide on how “scrubbed” that speech was. It was definitely partisan, and the only things it was scrubbed of is common sense, historical perspective, and basic knowledge of how our government works.

    Speaking of that, I can’t recall very many other presidential campaigners that flitted to other countries to give speeches during their campaign. Can you name me a couple? Since Germany won’t be voting for our president, but the speech was still televised and promoted in our country, what, precisely was he doing other than UNDERCUTTING our current president and PANDERING to his idea of a global unification.

    And speaking of THAT, why is it when Bush ran in 2000 and 2004 there were cries of “NWO” and “conspiracy” but when democrats spew their garbage about the “global village” and “we’re citizens of the world” no one bats an eye?

    Roland, I actually talked to a guy yesterday who was so frightfully ignorant that I was actually rendered dumbfounded. When I commented that the Obamination was in Iran, where he has NO authority to act as a representative of our nation abroad and has NO authority to even discuss our international policies, least of all with the president of a borderline rogue nation, this buffoon actually said, “Well, if he negotiates a treaty I would think you’d be happy about it.”

    No, I would NOT be, because no one gave him the authority to DO that! He could negotiate a treaty with Iran to give them enriched uranium for a couple of belly-dancing seminars and an oil painting of sand dunes for crying out loud!

    Then when President Bush declines to abide by that treaty, guess who the bad guy would be? Jesus, these liberal whackjobs are INSANE! As long as a dem does it, no matter if it’s illegal, immoral, or wrong, it’s okay, but no matter what a Republican does, it’s wrong. Grrrr…

    This is precisely how I got my name. I need to take my meds.

    Angry D.

  12. kolby Says:

    I’m short on time and don’t feel like responding to John Bolton, so I’ll just say that 1) Ronald Reagan used the “citizen of the world” phrase in the same spirit of solidarity that Obama did and 2) John McCain gave a speech in Canada just a month or so back.

    Concerning the rest of it, did you even read my comments above? It seems not. And I’m confused by the bulk of your comment.

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