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Words Never Spoken

Tuesday night, I didn't watch President Obama's address. I had a ten-year-old video game and a TV rerun that drew more of my interest. But I've seen clips and read a transcript, and I really didn't miss much.

Since then, I've seen a lot of people talking about what they wish they'd heard from the president. So I figured I'd take a swing at it and write a statement that I wish he'd given. The major differences are that I would have given mine sooner, and I've had eight weeks' worth of Obama's patented incompetence to draw upon in hindsight.

"My fellow Americans: as you know, we face an ecological disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The tragic explosion on BP's Deepwater Horizon oil rig, which killed eleven men, is spewing tremendous amounts of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. This poses a grave threat to not only the five states that border it, but potentially many of the states on the Atlantic -- and the repercussions of this spill could affect every single state.

To confront this crisis, I am marshaling the full resources of the federal government. We fully intend to work hand in hand with BP to stop the deluge. We stand ready to provide whatever resources they might need.

As part of that process, I am appointing a "spill czar" to coordinate the federal response. I will be meeting with this individual on a daily basis, and their first priority will be to identify and resolve any kinds of bureaucratic snags or complications or restrictions.

Further, we have received numerous offers of assistance from other nations who have had their own oil disasters. Currently, US law forbids foreign-flagged ships from working in US waters, but there is a provision in the Jones Act where I can suspend that in case of emergency. I am hereby invoking that clause, and we welcome the assistance of other nations, starting with the Dutch. When other nations have natural disasters, we have always been among the first to render aid. We are not so arrogant that we think we can handle all our problems on our own, and will take this opportunity to deepen our ties with other nations.

Let me be clear on this point: our first priority is to stop the leak -- period. In fact, that is our only priority. All other concerns regarding this matter are being put on the back burner until the flow of oil into the Gulf is stemmed.

Once that has been achieved, then -- and only then -- will we deal with the questions of responsibility and liability and cleaning up. As any doctor will tell you, if you have a patient who's bleeding severely, you don't test for diseases or worry about insurance coverage or wonder how the patient was cut so badly. You stem the bleeding first.

There will be a full investigation into the causes of this disaster, and every other deep water oil rig will be given a full safety inspection -- once we have secured this leak. We will do all we can to find out what caused the explosion, in order to prevent anything like this from happening ever again. And if any laws were broken, if any regulations were bypassed, then we shall address that with the full force of the law.

But make no mistake: in this, we shall also look to the medical model. In medicine, the guiding principle is "first, do no harm." We will not seek the destruction or nationalization of BP, a company that employs many thousands of Americans. We see no benefit in throwing them all out of work. Likewise, we will not impose any kind of blanket ban on offshore drilling without evidence that there is a clear and present danger, as that would also cost thousands of Americans their jobs and further curtail our own oil supplies.

In the long term, though, this disaster has brought the hazards of deep water oil drilling to the forefront -- and the dangers of our current energy situation as well. So tonight I am announcing a full-court press on the issue of our nation's energy future.

There have been arguments about how we should move forward on energy. There are very intelligent, very sincere, very principled people who advocate for and against various options, and their disagreements are honest ones.

So instead of choosing one, we will pursue many. We shall try as many options as we can, and see which ones bear fruit -- and which are not feasible at this time. And in the process, some people who are opposed to certain options will have to accept that the nation's needs come first, as well as turn to people who aren't overly popular among certain circles. When it comes to our nation's future, I intend to call upon the patriotism of these people to set aside political differences and concerns for the common good.

We shall pursue a prototype large-scale solar energy project in California. Senator Feinstein, who has staunchly blocked this plan in the Mojave Desert, will have to suck it up.

Wind power is another potential source. There's a plan to set up wind turbines off Cape Cod, in Massachusetts. The leaders of the opposition to Cape Wind were the late Senator Kennedy and Senator Kerry. I call upon Senator Kerry to come aboard this project.

Nuclear power is also a very viable option that we have neglected for decades. One of the biggest holdups has been the management of the toxic waste the process creates. The best plan has been to use Nevada's Yucca Mountain as a repository for nuclear waste, but there has been great resistance to this program. It is long past time Senator Reid and his allies stopped throwing up roadblocks to this, and the Department of Energy is inviting applications for new nuclear plants.

One fuel source that has an absolutely minimal environmental impact is natural gas. We need to expand our use of natural gas, as well as our supplies. To take the lead on this, there is one person who, as an elected official, worked very closely with the energy companies on natural gas -- but never lost sight of her duties to the people, and always put their interests first. She won concession after concession from the oil companies, and eventually struck firm but fair bargains that benefited all parties. I am asking former governor Sarah Palin to return to public service to serve as my Natural Gas Czar.

But those are all in the future. Right now, we have a tremendous dependency on oil, and that will not change any time soon. We need oil. We need oil today. We need very large quantities of oil. And we need oil in ways that isn't as risky as deep water drilling.

In pursuit of safer oil, I am relaxing the restrictions on drilling in shallower waters, closer to shore. The main reason the oil companies went to the deeper waters was because they were prevented from drilling in shallower waters. The theory was that if the drilling took place further from shore, the shores would be safer from any disasters like the Deepwater Horizon explosion.

That has been proven to be false comfort. The distance did not provide us safety from danger, just a slight delay. And the difficulties in fixing leaks a mile under the water mean that any leaks will last longer and be harder to stop. So we will be opening up more coastal regions for drilling, where any possible disasters will be much easier to attack.

Likewise, there are places on dry land where we have forbidden oil drilling, places like the Alaskan National Wildlife Reserve. Oil disasters on dry land are even easier to correct. So we will be opening more land for drilling in the immediate future.

None of this, however, is of much comfort to those who lost loved ones on the Deepwater Horizon rig, or whose lives and livelihoods are being threatened by the ongoing leak. To those people, I say that the thoughts and prayers of America are with you, that we shall not let you suffer alone, that we shall do all we can to help you weather this storm.

Thank you, and good night."


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Comments (19)

Jay, I'd have been satisfie... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

Jay, I'd have been satisfied with a restatement of his infamous "above my pay grade" remark, followed by him tendering his resignation. I believe Biden is now less of a threat to our republic and our constitution with mid-terms so close at hand.

Here is what I would have l... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Here is what I would have liked to hear him say

"I resign"

The only thing is that means that Biden would be in charge.

If Biden resigned at the same time that would put Pelosi in charge.

That is a case of damned if you do and damned if you dont.

The 3 stooges are running the show with Curly in charge.

So let me change that statement above a bit


"Joe Biden and I resign effective Jan 10,2011"

At least with a new speaker of the house we would have a good chance of recovering from this mess.

Jay,I am with you ... (Below threshold)

Jay,

I am with you except for the appointing of two "Czars." If President oPrah put two people in charge of things and gave them great discretionary powers (such as a Czar has) I would be OK with that, however I feel the appointment of two Czars would just lead to two more permanent government positions. The idea of Palin being in charge of a position is a risk he wouldn't take though no matter what. If she failed or refused she would COMPLETELY lose credibility, but if she accepted and succeeded, he would be done for in the future.

It will be particularly telling if in the coming years he does push Kerry, Reid and Feinstein for clean energy as is his wish. I don't expect it as I think that would pull from the Cap and Trade revenue which he plans to set up.

I, for one, expect a whole lot of fiddling while Rome continues to burn.

H

rm,Where's the "Le... (Below threshold)
Sky Captain:

rm,

Where's the "Lee Ward" statement?
Damn it, man, you're slipping. :-)

Jay TeaI have to a... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Jay Tea

I have to agree with Lee Ward about Obama.


""
Exactly - which makes me wonder what the heck Obama is thinking by letting this ride?
Perhaps he's hopeful that the truth won't be discovered until after he's in office.
Or is he so naive that he thinks if he scrunches his eyes closed really tight he can avoid the problem completely?
7. Posted by Lee Ward | March 13, 2008 6:52


Obambi's lack of creative thinking aside, despite his previous months of declaring that he was going to elevate the discourse and stay above it all -- that plan has been thrown out the window in a panic, and Barack is slinging mud just like the rest of them.His talk of raising the discourse was just that --- all talk. Bullshit, nothing more.
But he obviously can't pick intelligent advisers either. These days his closest advisers are hurting him more than helping.
4. Posted by Lee Ward | March 7, 2008


"Wow, what an inspiring message of hope and change." Posted by Lee Ward
Published: Mar 7, 08 10:00 AM

"I've been complaining that Obama wasn't being honest and straight forward with the American people for months now - this has nothing to do with "gotcha politics" and everything to do with the lack of honesty on the part of Barack Oabama finally catching up with him. "

2. Posted by Lee Ward | March 7, 2008

"But Barack Obama is such a shape-shifting phony that even after the issue has exploded onto the front page, he still cannot face the music -- he has to continue his charade even further. This is another example of how Obama appears to me to be pathologica....and it renders him wholly unfit for the office of Presidentl "
Posted by Lee Ward
Published: Mar 15, 08 09:47 AM


'For him to have put my party in that position is indicative of his ego-driven run, putting his own political interest above all else."

. Posted by Lee Ward | March 16, 2008

PRIZEWINNER

As I've already said (but it bears repeating) Obama is demonstrating how wholly inadequate he is as a chief executive. Sitting on this problem until it boiled over and spilled all over the front pages is rank amateurism, and indicative of a man who sticks his head in the sand rather than pro-actively managing a crisis. • And in this case the crisis is of his own making. What will happen next? We'll see Obama give a speech, then deflect press inquiries in the weeks that follow and not answer follow-up questions by claiming that he's "already answered all of the questions," "

Posted by Lee Ward
Published: Mar 18, 08 12:30 PM

"Enough with the statements already. It's time for action, Barack. Don't talk about the problem, fix it."
Posted by Lee Ward
Published: Mar 19, 08 01:45 PM

"The "Great Uniter" has failed to unite the Democratic party, further demonstrating that on this issue as well Barack cannot deliver anything more than plagiarized speeches and flowery prose.
When it comes time to "do something" Barack doesn't even try - and succeeds only at making matters worse.

"
Posted by Lee Ward
Published: Mar 20, 08 12:30 PM


"• Bizarre... I think he says the words without thinking the thoughts. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and suggest that he's just on autopilot - burnt out. Exhausted.
• But guess what. The job of President is a 24/7/365 job -- and four years is a long time.

"
• Posted by Lee Ward
Published: Mar 20, 08 08:06 PM

Lee I have to hand it to you. I couldnt have said it better myself.

Sky Captain sorry about th... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Sky Captain sorry about that.

Here Lee Ward let me save you the trouble.

Republicans were only for honest open presidential speeches after a black man became president.

You could also site nuclear... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

You could also site nuclear generating stations on military bases and avoid all the local political crap.

But all your suggestions would require 'vision', and our current 'visionary' has his head planted up his socialist ass. The One only sees problems as opportunity to advance his 'social fairness' doctrines.

You know what I wish I'd he... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

You know what I wish I'd heard?

That he'd resigned the office to pursue his golf game that seems to be so much more important to him than reality.

Two things Jay,(1)... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Two things Jay,

(1) Obama would never say anything like that as his sole goal is the "fundamental tranformation of America". If you keep that in mind everything he says makes perfect sense. He doesn't want things to be fixed he wants them transformed.

(2) Wind and solar sound good to the clueless, but in no way is the technology anywhere near what it would need to be for them to be economically feasible. (Not to mention that oil kills wildlife only when there is an accident or mistake-- windmills kill wildlife when they're working properly.) Those sources are a waste, plain and simple. If they weren't government wouldn't need to subsidize them. (Same thing with ethanol.)

Nuclear is the way to go for our nations electricy and oil for our transportation.

Your final points should actually be the main points and focus of your speech. There is plenty of oil that we can get to on land and in shallow water. Hundreds of years from now when we use up 30% of those reserves and the oil stops flowing by itself, then we can look to sources deeper in the ocean.

More than likely though, by then there will be techonologies developed to get the other 70% of the oil out of the "dry" wells in an economically feasible manner.

Or if we finally wake up and stop voting for ever increasing government control/regulation of everything (and both Republican and Democrats are guilty of this-- just in different ways and at different rates) and instead return to the free market capitalism that made America the leader of the world then we can expect that we will develop economically feasible alternatives soon enough that oil won't be necessary for much longer anyway. The free market will find better and cheaper sources and we'll just stop using fossile fuels because they'd be a waste of money.

You know the saying "if you build a better mousetrap..."? Well big government/socialist systems don't build better mousetraps. Liberty and free markets do.

The federal government did ... (Below threshold)
jim m:

The federal government did build a better mousetrap, but the USDA put it on indefinite hold pending cheese certification.

Give it up Lee,<br... (Below threshold)
914:

Give it up Lee,


You are diametrically opposed to yourself.. And your racially bi"assss"ed...

I had a ten-year-o... (Below threshold)
James H:
I had a ten-year-old video game

Go out and get Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2 already, you luddite.

What a breath of fresh air... (Below threshold)
Bob:

What a breath of fresh air your speech would have been. But writing and speaking common sense is easier when you're not a dogmatic socialist asshole.

James H-Ever tried... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

James H-

Ever tried Portal?

Jlaw: Can't say I have. I... (Below threshold)
James H:

Jlaw: Can't say I have. I did find on the XBox marketplace an enhanced version of The Secret of Monkey Island.

I'm still trying to find al... (Below threshold)
epador:

I'm still trying to find all the Easter Eggs in Pong. It'll take me a while to work up to your level.

Ahem. Command And Conquer: ... (Below threshold)

Ahem. Command And Conquer: Red Alert II and C&C: Renegade are NOT to be dissed.

That is all.

J.

Thank god no one brought up the TV show...

About the czars... yeah, I ... (Below threshold)

About the czars... yeah, I don't like 'em, either, but I had to make it sound at least a little like Obama. I tried to use as many of his cliches as possible.

J.

Wasteland, one of the best... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Wasteland, one of the best games Evah.

Also Sword of Aragon.




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