"Behind the Lines": Bush Speech
by Il Ragno
10 September 2004
(Unedited) Text of President Bush's speech at the Republican convention
Knight Ridder Newspapers
Mr. Chairman, delegates, fellow citizens: I am honored by your support, and I accept your nomination for President of the United States.
When I said those words four years ago, none of us could have envisioned what these years would bring. Well, none of you could, anyway. In the heart of this great city, we saw tragedy arrive on a quiet morning. We saw the bravery of rescuers grow with danger. We saw passengers on a doomed plane who died with a courage that frightened their killers. We have seen a shaken economy rise to its feet. And we have seen Americans in uniform storming mountain strongholds, and charging through sandstorms, and liberating millions, with acts of valor that would make the men of Normandy proud. What we didn't see were F-16s being deployed. But that's not important now.
Since 2001, Americans have been given hills of credulity to climb, and found the strength to not laugh while climbing them. Now, because we have made the hard journey, we can see the valley below although we're too disoriented to know quite where the hell we are. Now, because we have faced challenges with resolve and followed where we were led, we have historic goals within our reach - 5000 year old history at that! - and greatness in our future. We will build a safer world and a more hopeful America with higher walls and more motion-sensor video monitors and retinal-scan ID checkpoints and everywhere, EVERYwhere, cossacks-in-Kevlar.... and nothing will hold us back.
In the work we have done, and the work we will do, I am fortunate to have a superb Vice President. I have counted on Dick Cheney's calm and steady judgment in difficult days; usually I email him the question and he almost always gets back to me by the end of the day. If he were ever physically present in Washington and not in a remote lab being kept alive by the robotics division of Hewlett Packard, I'd be tempted to say I am honored to have him at my side. But for a fella who's, like, one-third fiberoptics, he's been a brick.
I am grateful to share my walk in life with Laura Bush. Americans have come to see the goodness and kindness and strength I first saw 26 years ago, and then they look at me and they toss a coin: either she's a simpleton of some kind, or as Mexican as she looks. But we love our First Lady.
I am a fortunate father of two spirited, intelligent, and lovely young women. Perhaps you've seen them popping their tops on the GIRLS GONE WILD: DOGGYSTYLE infomercial. I am blessed with a sister and brothers who are also my closest friends and scheduled successors. And I will always be the proud and grateful son of George and Barbara Bush, who taught me early on that others are 'born to run' but we Bushes are 'born to run things'.
My father served eight years at the side of another great American Ronald Reagan. His spirit of optimism and goodwill and decency are in this hall, and in our hearts, and will always define our party. Perhaps you remember him? My father made fun of his economic policies and called him names during the primary and then had to drink his Evian water out of a dog dish for the next 8 years. Then it was Poppy's turn at last, and Nancy spit on all the silverware on her way out the door. Oh yeah: good memories of the Reagans.
Two months from today, voters will make a choice based on the records we have built, the convictions we hold, and the vision that guides us forward. A presidential election is a jump-ball to win Hymie's patronage, not a contest for the future. Tonight I will tell you where I had better stand, what I had better believe, and where I will invade next if I intend to lead this country in the next four years.
I believe every child can learn, and every school must teach so we ignored the fact that every other prior wishful-thinking program for niggers had squandered billions and netted the exact same niggers afterwards, and passed the most important federal education reform in history. Because we acted, children are making sustained progress in reading and math, America's schools are getting better, and you'd think that would be an impossibility with millions of Aztec, Sudanese and Hmong whelps shovelled into the system each year who can barely communicate through flash-cards, let alone written English, but it just goes to show you that nothing will hold us back: not the truth, not the laws of physics, and certainly not common sense.
I believe we have a moral responsibility to honor America's seniors before Kerry hands geezers the store, so I brought Republicans and Democrats together to strengthen Medicare. Now seniors are getting immediate help buying medicine and my buddies in the pharmaceutical houses get to keep charging thirty-five dollars a pill for blood-thinning medication. C'mon: everybody wins! Soon every senior will be able to get prescription drug coverage, and nothing will hold us back from taxing white people to DEATH to pay for all of this; since not paying taxes at all is what makes our democracy so inviting to our Illegal-Americans, and as for African-Americans - well, shoot, you ain't withholding enough cash out of a Foot Locker or Wendy's check to underwrite a bottle of Doan's Pills - let's be serious.
I believe in the energy and innovative spirit of America's workers, entrepreneurs, farmers, and ranchers so we unleashed that energy with the largest tax relief in a generation. Because we acted, our economy is growing again, and creating jobs, although naysayers will point out that a laid-off 55-year-old claims adjustor working the third shift at WalMart is not the kind of job growth that augurs well for the economy, and do you know what I say to that? I say, nothing will hold us back.
I believe the most solemn duty of the American president is to protect two percent of the American people. If America shows uncertainty and weakness in this decade, the New world Order my daddy baptised will drift toward tragedy. This will not happen on my watch. Then again, I was usually AWOL on my watch. But at least I never betrayed my country by going to Vietnam and serving on a swift boat.
I am running for President with a clear and positive plan to build a safer world, and a more hopeful America. I am running with a compassionate conservative philosophy: that government should help people improve their lives, not try to run their lives; and we can do that by running the lives of others not particularly in need of improvement. Really, what could be simpler? I believe this Nation wants steady, consistent, principled leadership that only invades countries that can't hurt us, or even fight back in any way and that is why, with your help, we will win this election.
The story of America is the story of expanding gases inside the corpse of liberty: an ever-widening circle of methane stench, constantly growing to reach further and include more until it inevitably explodes. Our Nation's founding commitment is still our deepest commitment: In our world, and here at home - but mainly in our world - we will extend the frontiers of freedom. Remember that 'frontier of freedom' when you're preparing that hair sample we'll be needing from you after the Inauguration.
The times in which we live and work are changing dramatically. The workers of our parents' generation typically had one job, one skill, one career often with one company that provided health care and a pension. And most of those workers were men. And then the Real Victors of World War 2 stepped up to bat, at long last; and such a deal they made us! Today, workers change jobs, even careers, many times during their lives, and in one of the most dramatic shifts our society has seen, two-thirds of all Moms also work outside the home. This changed world can be a time of great opportunity for all Americans to earn a better living, support your family, and have a rewarding career, in the way that being hunted for sport by Jivaro cannibals provides a great opportunity to hone your survival instincts, camouflage techniques and basic outdoorsmanship And government must take your side. Many of our most fundamental systems the tax code, health coverage, pension plans, worker training were created for the world of yesterday, not tomorrow. We will transform these systems so that all citizens are equipped, prepared and thus truly free to make your own choices and pursue your own dreams. Try not to think how incredibly freakin' Bolshevik those last two sentences sound, by the way.
My plan begins with providing the security and opportunity of a growing economy. We now compete in a global market that provides new buyers for our goods, but new competition for our workers. To create more jobs in America, America must be the best place in the world to do business. That means skilled positions becoming minimum-wage jobs, and that means H1-B workers: curry niggers. To create jobs, my plan will encourage investment and expansion by restraining federal spending, reducing regulation, and making tax relief permanent. That means the whole country's one potential landfill with a FOR SALE sign on it. To create jobs, we will make our country less dependent on foreign sources of energy. That means 'liberating' Iraqi oil, for starters. To create jobs, we will expand trade and level the playing field to sell American goods and services across the globe. That means manufacturing those American goods in Kuala Lumpur and outsourcing those American servicles to Bangladesh. And we must protect small business owners and workers from the explosion of frivolous lawsuits that threaten jobs across America. Small businesses like Halliburton and Harken Energy, i.e., the 'little guy'.
Another drag on our economy is the current tax code, which is a complicated mess filled with special interest loopholes, saddling our people with more than six billion hours of paperwork and headache every year. The American people - the ones I know, at any rate - deserve and our economic future demands a simpler, fairer, pro-growth system. In a new term, I will lead a bipartisan effort to reform and simplify the federal tax code. I also will strive to overturn legislation currently making it a federal crime to make the stock market go up and down. I had an uncle who could do it at parties and it was just about the funniest thing you ever saw.
Another priority in a new term will be to help workers take advantage of the expanding economy to find better, higher-paying jobs. In this time of change, ten dollars an hour will seem like real money and make many workers want to go back to school to learn different or higher-level skills. So we will double the number of people served by our principal job training program and increase funding for community colleges. I know that with the right skills, American workers of color can compete with anyone sewing Nike logos onto 1500 baseball caps a day, anywhere in the world.
In this time of change, opportunity in some communities is more distant than in others. To stand with workers in poor communities and those that have lost manufacturing, textile, and other jobs we will create American opportunity zones. In these areas, we'll provide liquor stores and Armed Forces induction centers to help ease the misery, tax relief to Jew slumlords and other incentives to attract the usual gook/hindu-run new business, and improve housing and job training to bring hope and work throughout all of America. And don't ask what "housing training" is because you DON'T wanna know.
As I've traveled the country, I've met many workers and small business owners who have told me they are worried they cannot afford health care. I'm still not sure how my security people let them through. More than half of the uninsured are small business employees and their families. In a new term, we must allow small firms to join together to purchase insurance at the discounts available to big companies. We will offer a tax credit to encourage small businesses and their employees to set up health savings accounts, and provide direct help for low-income Americans to purchase them. These accounts give workers the security of insurance against major illness, the opportunity to save tax-free for routine health expenses, and the freedom of knowing you can take your account with you whenever you change jobs. And we will provide low-income Americans with better access to health care: In a new term, I will ensure every poor county in America has a community or rural health center. And I will see to it that every American's car is washed by the Federal Government every Wednesday, promptly and courteously, by the close of business. Whee! This is fun!
As I have traveled our country, I have met too many good doctors, especially OB-GYNS, who are being forced out of practice because of the high cost of lawsuits. To make health care more affordable and accessible, we must pass medical liability reform now. And in all we do to improve health care in America, we will make sure that health decisions are made by doctors and patients, not by bureaucrats in Washington, DC. Like, uh, limiting your ability to seek damages from a quack.
In this time of change, government must take the side of working families because it will be necessary to have just the right angle to push them out of the speeding car when the time comes. In a new term, we will change outdated labor laws to offer comp-time and flex-time. Our laws should never stand in the way of a more family-friendly workplace. The answer is always: more laws.
Another priority for a new term is to build an ownership society, because ownership brings security, and dignity, and independence. After all, if you own a nice condo and a bitchin' Jeep Cherokee and a plasma-screen tv, you won't much mind or notice that my friends own YOU.
Thanks to our policies, homeownership in America is at an all-time high. Tonight we set a new goal: seven million more affordable homes in the next 10 years so more American families will be able to open the door and say welcome to my home. You like that one? I got it off some Century 21 junk mail.
In an ownership society, more people will own their health plans, and have the confidence of owning a piece of their retirement. We will always keep the promise of Social Security for our older workers. How? Magic! With the huge Baby Boom generation approaching retirement, many of our children and grandchildren understandably worry whether Social Security will be there when they need it. We must strengthen Social Security by allowing younger workers to save some of their taxes in a personal account a nest egg you can call your own, and government can never take away. Lock Box NO, Nest Egg SI!
In all these proposals, we seek to provide not just a government program, but a path to greater opportunity, more freedom, and more control over your own life. Because only the government can provide you freedom and control over your own life. Thus, when we tell you you're 'free'...you are! This path begins with our youngest Americans. To build a more hopeful America, we must help our children reach as far as their vision and character can take them. Tonight, I remind every parent and every teacher, I say to every child: No matter what your circumstance, no matter where you live your school will be the path to the promise of America. Just watch that first step 'cos it's a doozy.
We are transforming our schools by raising standards and focusing on results. We are insisting on accountability, empowering parents and teachers, and making sure that local people are in charge of their schools. By testing every child, we are identifying those who need help and we're providing a record level of funding to get them that help. Sure, I know we've tested every child for the past 100 years and every previous year's level of funding broke the record from the year before, but I'm halfway through reading this sumbitch now, and nothing will hold me back.
In northeast Georgia, Gainesville Elementary School is mostly Hispanic and 90 percent poor and this year 90 percent of its students passed state tests in reading and math. The principal expresses the philosophy of his school this way: "We don't focus on what we can't do at this school; we focus on what we can do. We do whatever it takes to get kids across the finish line." This principal is challenging the soft bigotry of low expectations by forging test scores, and that is the spirit of our education reform, and the commitment of our country: Me voy a vomitar en la tomba de tu madre. We will leave no child behind.
We are making progress and there is more to do. When you're a 'conservative', these days, there's always more to do.
In this time of change, most new jobs are filled by people with at least two years of college, yet even though I made it to the Oval Office somehow, overall only about one in four students gets there. In our high schools, we will fund early intervention programs to help students at risk. We will place a new focus on math and science. As we make progress, we will require a rigorous exam before graduation. Because term papers and Regents exams aren't reliable indicators of subject mastery, so we're instituting something called Freedom Finals that students can read like a comic book.. By simulating raising performance in our high schools, and expanding Pell grants for low and middle income families, we will help more white Americans start their career with a now-worthless college diploma and enough debt to bankrupt Chad.
America's black & mestizo children must also have a healthy start in life. In a new term, we will lead an aggressive effort to enroll millions of poor children who are eligible but not signed up for the government's health insurance programs. We will not allow a lack of attention, or information, or funds, to stand between these children and the health care they need.
Anyone who wants more details on my agenda can find them online. The web address is a lot like me: not very imaginative, but easy to remember. GeorgeWBush.com.
These changing times can be exciting times of expanded opportunity. As can a complete economic collapse, or an outbreak of plague, or a meteor attack. And here, you face a choice. The choice of believing that my opponent's policies are dramatically different from ours, or of waking up. I know where my money's riding on that one. Senator Kerry opposed Medicare reform and health savings accounts. After supporting my education reforms, he now wants to dilute them. He opposes legal and medical liability reform. He opposed reducing the marriage penalty, opposed doubling the child credit, and opposed lowering income taxes for all who pay them. And he would merely swear undying loyalty to Israel while I've killed literally hundreds of American kids defending Israel's right to do whatever it pleases to whomever it pleases, whenever it pleases, so long as they come through with that baby red Jesus-cow like we're all hoping. To be fair, there are some things my opponent is for: he's proposed more than two trillion dollars in new federal spending so far, and that's a lot, even for a senator from Massachusetts. To pay for that spending, he is running on a platform of increasing taxes and that's the kind of promise a politician usually keeps. Unlike my own modest spending proposals, outlined above in purple crayon.
His policies of tax and spend of expanding government rather than expanding opportunity are the policies of the past. We are on the path to the future and we are not turning back, so bring on the robot hookers and that glowing silver ball Woody Allen got high on in SLEEPER..
In this world of change, some things do not change: the values we try to live by, the institutions that give our lives meaning and purpose and the fact that Israel is the bestest buddy a kid could ever ask for. Our society today rests on a foundation of abandoned responsibility and shiftless character and a grotesque caricature of family commitment.
Because family and work are sources of stability and dignity, I support welfare reform that strengthens family and requires niggers to at least mimic being at work. Because a caring society will value its weakest members, we must make a place for the unborn child. Because religious charities provide a safety net of mercy and compassion, our government must never discriminate against them. Because the union of a man and woman deserves an honored place in our society, I support the protection of marriage against activist judges. And I will continue to appoint federal judges who know the difference between personal opinion, political dissent and hate speech and will punish all three by wielding the strictest possible interpretation of the law like a cudgel. Okay, that takes care of the Falwell crowd.
My opponent recently announced that he is the candidate of "conservative values," which must have come as a surprise to a lot of his supporters. Now, there are some problems with this claim. If you say the heart and soul of America is found in Hollywood, I'm afraid you are not the candidate of conservative values. If you voted against the bipartisan Defense of Marriage Act, which President Clinton signed, you are not the candidate of conservative values. If you gave a speech, as my opponent did, calling the Reagan presidency eight years of "moral darkness," then you may be a lot of things, but the candidate of conservative values is not one of them. Go dig up Lester Maddox if you want a conservative candidate; ain't nobody in here but us chickens. Buck, buck, buckbuckBUUUUCK.... (applause)
This election will also determine how America responds to the continuing danger of terrorism and you know where I stand - wherever Cheney tells me to. Three days after September 11th, I stood where Americans died, in the ruins of the Twin Towers. Workers in hard hats were shouting to me, "Whatever it takes." A fellow grabbed me by the arm and he said, "Do not let me down." A third said, "Hey George, you're a fuckin' millionaire, how about loanin' me twenty grand?" Since that day, I wake up every morning thinking about those first two men, and how to better protect our country. I will never relent in milking this "defending America" bit, whatever it takes.
So we have fought the terrorists across the earth not for pride, not for power, but for Israel and because our long degrading co-optation by Israel has placed the lives of our citizens are at stake. Our strategy is clear. We have tripled funding for homeland security and trained half a million first responders, because we are determined to protect our newly-seized control of your homeland. We are transforming our military - and speaking of conservative family values, how 'bout that Lynndie England? - and reforming and strengthening our intelligence services by simultaneously firing the people who warned us 9/11 was coming while promising never to laugh it off and do nothing about it, ever again. We are staying on the offensive striking terrorists abroad so we do not have to face them here at home. And we are working to advance liberty in the broader Middle East, because freedom will bring a future of hope, and the peace we all want. And we will prevail.
Our strategy is succeeding. Four years ago, Afghanistan was the home base of al-Qaida, Pakistan was a transit point for terrorist groups, Saudi Arabia was fertile ground for terrorist fundraising, Libya was secretly pursuing nuclear weapons, Iraq was a gathering threat, and al-Qaida was largely unchallenged as it planned attacks. Today, the government of a free Afghanistan is growing opium again while playacting at fighting terror, Pakistan is capturing terrorist leaders - unfortunately they keep dying in custody, Saudi Arabia is making prearranged raids and arrests, Libya is dismantling its known weapons programs, the army of a free Iraq is fighting for freedom to carry a gun in a war zone, and more than three-quarters of al-Qaida's key members and associates have been detained or killed. We have led, many have joined, thousands have died and America and the world are safer.
This progress involved careful diplomacy, clear moral purpose, countless bombs and bullets and some tough decisions. And the toughest came on Iraq. We knew Saddam Hussein's record of aggression and support for terror. We knew his long history of pursuing, even using, weapons of mass destruction. We knew the instructions for the PNAC model-kit clearly said "to begin World War 4, invade Iraq". And we know that September 11th requires our country to think differently: We must, and we will, confront threats to America before it is too late.
In Saddam Hussein, we saw a threat. Nobody else not on AIPAC's Christmas list saw anything at all, but members of both political parties, including my opponent and his running mate, saw the threat, and voted to authorize the use of force. We went to the United Nations Security Council, which passed a unanimous resolution demanding the dictator disarm, or face serious consequences. Leaders in the Middle East urged him to comply. After more than a decade of diplomacy, we gave Saddam Hussein another chance, a final chance, to meet his responsibilities to the civilized world by turning his country over to Israeli management and then promptly having himself executed on closed-circuit tv. He again refused, and I faced the kind of decision that comes only to the Oval Office; a decision no president would ask for, but must be prepared to make - a phone call to Ariel Sharon. Do I forget the lessons of September 11th and take the word of a madman, or do I take action to defend our country and take the word of another madman? Faced with that choice, I will go with the Jew and defend America every time.
Because we acted to defend our country, the murderous regimes of Saddam Hussein and the Taliban are history, more than 50 million people have been liberated at the point of a gun, and democracy is coming to the broader Middle East on the back of a tank. In Afghanistan, terrorists have done everything they can to intimidate people yet more than 10 million citizens have registered to vote in the October presidential election a resounding endorsement of democracy, after which their children were returned to them essentially unharmed. Despite ongoing acts of violence, Iraq now has a strong-smelling handpicked stooge of a Prime Minister, a national council who stick closely to the script, and the usual bogus national elections are scheduled for January. Our Nation is standing with the people of Afghanistan and Iraq, because when America gives its word to Israel, America must keep its word to Israel, no matter how many enemies they point out for us to kill. As importantly, we are serving a vital and historic cause that will make our country safer in about a hundred years or so. Free societies in the Middle East will be hopeful societies -hopeful that we let our guard down at some point - which no longer feed resentments and breed violence for export but instead unify the entire Muslim world towards a single purpose. We're kinda hoping that purpose will be 'celebrating the democratic process'. Free governments in the Middle East will bus tables for their IDF occupiers as they fight terrorists instead of harboring them, and that helps us keep the peace. So our mission in Afghanistan and Iraq is clear: We will help new leaders to train their armies, and move toward elections, and get on the path of stability and democracy as quickly as possible. And then our troops will return home with the honor they have earned.
Our troops know the historic importance of our work. One composite Army Specialist wrote home: "We are transforming a once sick society into a hopeful place. For instance, today we blew up the homes of the relatives of some people wanted for questioning. The various terrorist enemies we are facing in Iraq," he continued, "are really aiming at you back in the United States. This is a test of will for our country. We soldiers of yours are doing great and scoring victories in confronting the evil terrorists. Gosh, I miss your milk and cookies, Mom. Give Lassie a great big hug for me."
That young man might not actually exist but, nevertheless, he is right: our men and women in uniform are doing a superb job for America. Tonight I want to speak to all of them and to their families: You are involved in a struggle of historic proportion. We have assembled a fighting fawce of extwawdinawy man-nitude. (chuckles) Little "Enter the Dragon" reference there, people, no cause for alarm. Anyway...right, right, soldiers' families. Because of your service and sacrifice, we are defeating the terrorists where they live and plan, and making America safer in some vague metaphoric way not discernible to the naked eye. Because of you, women in Afghanistan are no longer shot in a sports stadium but are shot in the streets and in their homes, with dignity and freedom. Because of you, the people of Iraq no longer fear being executed and left in mass graves, just shallow ones. Because of you, the world is more than just dominated by Jews, it is now owned outright by them - and the sooner the nations of the world accept that fact, the sooner life will be more peaceful. We owe you our thanks, and we owe you something more. We will give you all the resources, all the tools, and all the support you need for victory. Ixnay on the orture-tay, though.
Again, my opponent and I have different approaches. I proposed, and the Congress overwhelmingly passed, 87 billion dollars in funding needed by our troops doing battle in Afghanistan and Iraq. My opponent and his running mate voted against this money for bullets, and fuel, and vehicles, and body armor. When asked to explain his vote, the Senator said, "I actually did vote for the 87 billion dollars before I voted against it." Then he said he was "proud" of that vote. Then, when pressed, he said it was a "complicated" matter. There is nothing complicated about supporting our troops in combat. Either you kill for Israel or you're a traitor to America.
Our allies also know the historic importance of our work, but they're trying very hard not to think about that. About 40 nations stand beside us in Afghanistan, and some 30 in Iraq. And I deeply appreciate the courage and wise counsel of leaders like Prime Minister Howard, and President Kwasniewski, and Prime Minister Berlusconi and, of course, Prime Minister Tony Blair. All of whom are cringing at the sound of their names right about now.
Again, my opponent takes a different approach. In the midst of war, he has called America's allies, quote, a "coalition of the coerced and the bribed." That would be nations like Great Britain, Poland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Denmark, El Salvador, Australia, and others allies that deserve the respect of all Americans, not the scorn of a politician. I respect every soldier, from every country, who serves beside us in the hard work of history. America is grateful, and America will not forget. Well, America actually doesn't know or care that you're even there, but then, that's another of liberty's great blessings: vacant self-absorption.
The people we have freed won't forget either. Not long ago, seven Iraqi men came to see me in the Oval Office. They had "X"s branded into their foreheads, and their right hands had been cut off, by Saddam Hussein's secret police, the sadistic punishment for imaginary crimes. During our emotional visit one of the Iraqi men used his new prosthetic hand to slowly write out, in Arabic, a prayer for God to bless America. Then somebody killed the lights - and when they had been turned back on, the seven Iraqi men were gone! - leaving behind only oily smudges on the floor where they stood and a raghead pledge of allegiance written with some truly atrocious penmanship. It was as if they had never existed, yet I am proud that our country remains the hope of the oppressed, and the greatest force for good on this earth.
Others understand the historic importance of our work. The terrorists know. They know that a vibrant, successful democracy at the heart of the Middle East will discredit their radical ideology of hate, because who doesn't glow with happiness when YO! MTV RAPS and BOY MEETS BOY come on ten times a day apiece? They know that men and women with hope, and purpose, and dignity do not strap bombs on their bodies and kill the innocent; they put on IDF uniforms and kill the guilty. The terrorists are fighting freedom with all their cunning and cruelty because freedom is their greatest fear and they should be afraid, because freedom is on the march and "E! Wild on Baghdad" is on the way.
I believe in the transformational power of liberty: The wisest use of American strength is to advance freedom. As the citizens of Afghanistan and Iraq seize the moment and become our cultural Amway salesmen, their example will send a message of hope throughout a vital region. Palestinians will hear the message that democracy and reform are within their reach, and so is peace with our good friend Israel. You see, there's no 5000-year-old blood feud so ingrained that a few hot dogs at the ballpark can't smooth over. Young women across the Middle East will hear the message that their day of equality and justice is coming. Young men will hear the message that young women hear the message that their day of equality is coming and they'll be all smiles, cos they know those titties gonna be front-and-center, on display from now on. For no-fault nookie with 'liberated' bimbos is a byproduct of liberty, and national progress and dignity are found in liberty, not tyranny and terror. Reformers, and political prisoners, and exiles, and Jewish mercantile interests will hear the message that their dream of freedom cannot be denied forever. And as freedom advances heart by heart, and nation by nation America will be more secure and the world more peaceful. It'll be like living on a puffy pink cloud.
America has done this kind of work before and there have always been doubters. In 1946, 18 months after the fall of Berlin to allied forces, a journalist wrote in the New York Times, "Germany is a land in an acute stage of economic, political and moral crisis. European capitals are frightened. In every military headquarters, one meets alarmed officials doing their utmost to deal with the consequences of the occupation policy that they admit has failed." End quote. Maybe that same person's still around, writing editorials. Fortunately, we had a resolute president named Truman, who with the American people persevered, knowing not only that dropping atomic bombs on civilians, twice, was a moral use of power which saved lives - but also that a new democracy at the center of Europe would lead to stability and peace. Two for two, Harry. And because that generation of Americans held firm in the cause of liberty, we live in a better and safer world today. You know, even I can't buy that. Are you sure Dick wants it in?
The progress we and our friends and allies seek in the broader Middle East will not come easily, or all at once, or even partially, or even sometime during this century. Yet Americans, of all people, should never be surprised by the power of liberty to transform lives and nations. That power brought settlers on perilous journeys, inspired colonies to rebellion, ended the sin of slavery, and set our Nation against the tyrannies of the 20th century. We were honored to aid the rise of democracy in Germany and Japan and Nicaragua and Central Europe and the Baltics and that noble story goes on, headstone by headstone. I believe that America is called to lead the cause of freedom in a new century. I believe that millions in the Middle East plead in silence for their liberty. If you listen closely, it's almost as if they're NOT pleading for liberty - it's truly amazing! I believe that given the chance, they will embrace the most honorable, pimp-ass, blinged-out form of government ever devised by man. I believe all these things because freedom is not America's gift to the world, it is the Almighty God's gift to every man and woman in this world. And I believe zombies rule Belgium in secret, and have done so for hundreds of years now.
This moment in the life of our country will be remembered. Unfortunately, generations will know if we kept our faith and kept our word. Generations will know if we seized this moment, and used it to build a future of safety and peace. The freedom of many, and the future security of the few who own our Nation, now depend on us. And tonight, my fellow Americans, I ask you to stand with me.
In the last four years, you and I have come to know each other. Even when we don't agree, at least you know what I believe and where I stand. You may have noticed I have a few flaws, too. People sometimes have to correct my English ? I knew I had a problem when Arnold Schwarzenegger started doing it. Some folks look at me and see a certain swagger, which in Texas is called "walking." Now and then I come across as a little too blunt and for that we can all thank the white-haired lady sitting right up there. And the less said about my world's-biggest-asshole squint, the better.
One thing I have learned about the presidency is that whatever shortcomings you have, people are going to notice them and whatever strengths you have, you're going to need them. I really had to learn that; it never occurred to me as, say, a child of six. These four years have brought moments I could not foresee and will not forget. I have tried to comfort Americans who lost the most on September 11th, people who showed me a picture or told me a story or accused me of stealing the election, so I would know how much was taken from them. I have learned first-hand that ordering Americans into battle is the hardest decision, even when it is right: I hope never to have to do it. I have returned the salute of wounded soldiers, some with a very tough road ahead, who say they were just doing their job. Wait, I think that might've been a movie I was watching the other night. Anyhow, I've held the children of the fallen, who are told their dad or mom is a hero, but would rather just have their dad or mom.
And I have met with parents and wives and husbands who have received a folded flag, and said a final goodbye to a soldier they loved. I am awed that so many have used those meetings to say that I am in their prayers to offer encouragement to me. Where does strength like that come from, to not do the selfish thing and leave me out of those prayers? How can people so burdened with sorrow also feel such pride in a mission to colonize a sovereign nation because Norman Podhoretz just kept insisting? It is because they know their loved one was last seen doing good. Well, obviously not that good, if they died, but you know what I mean. Because they know that liberty was precious to the one they lost. And in those military families, I have seen the character of a great nation: decent, and idealistic, and strong.
The world saw that spirit three miles from here, when the people of this city faced peril together, and lifted a flag over the ruins, and defied the enemy with their courage and went right on selling 9/11 t-shirts and miniature American flags to each other. My fellow Americans, for as long as our country stands, people will look to the resurrection of New York City and they will say: Here buildings fell, and here a nation rose, and the Jews got paid both times.
We see America's character in our military, which finds a way or makes one. We see it in our veterans, who are supporting military families in their days of worry. We see it in our young people, who have found heroes once again. We see that character in workers and entrepreneurs, who are renewing our economy with their effort and optimism. And all of this has confirmed one belief beyond doubt: Having come this far, our tested and confident Nation can achieve anything. Now if only I still saw that when I take off these glasses Cheney gave me. Damn!
To everything we know there is a season: a time for sadness, a time for struggle, a time for rebuilding. And now we have reached a time for hope. This young century will be liberty's century, if we have to enslave the entire Middle East to do it. By promoting liberty abroad by eliminating all of the liberty-haters out there, we will build a safer world. By encouraging liberty at home via chip implant surveillance, martial law and duct tape, we will build a more hopeful America. Like generations before us, we have a calling from beyond the stars to stand for freedom. And I'll give you a dollar if you can find a crazier sentence ever uttered by a sitting President. You'd have to cheat and crib a Jim Stockdale quote! This is the everlasting hashish- dream of FDR and Bernard Baruch's America and tonight, in this place, that awful, rat-snouted dream is renewed. Now we go forward grateful for our freedom, faithful to our cause, prepared to memorize the script of liberty Jews have thoughtfully provided to us, and confident in the future of the greatest nation on earth. And America as well.
God bless you, and may God continue to bless America. Strategery!