Al Gore involved in another scandal! (political cartoon)
by stormbear, Sat Dec 02, 2006 at 05:06:50 AM EST
Crossposted from Town Called Dobson
click to enlarge
On December 13, 2000 we heard two distinctly different speeches. One from Vice-President Al Gore and the other was from President Elect George W. Bush. Both speeches had things in common - they sounded conciliatory, polite and hopeful. In hindsight, that is where all similarities end - one speech had promises which would be kept despite tremendous personal cost, the other was a pack of lies, delivered by a soulless man - the most corrupt individual every to take the Oath of Office.
Now, as we approach the six year anniversary, I wanted to look back at those two speeches - Gore's concession and Bush's acceptance, and see how the compare to the last six years and to explore which promises were kept and which promises were broken.
More after the flip...
I want to start with how Bush ended his speech.
I was not elected to serve one party, but to serve one nation.
The president of the United States is the president of every single American, of every race and every background.
Whether you voted for me or not, I will do my best to serve your interests and I will work to earn your respect.
I will be guided by President Jefferson's sense of purpose, to stand for principle, to be reasonable in manner, and above all, to do great good for the cause of freedom and harmony.
The presidency is more than an honor. It is more than an office. It is a charge to keep, and I will give it my all.
Never before with the exception of the Civil War has this nation been so divided, the man who promised to bring us together has driven the largest wedge into American culture in modern times. Fake morality outweighed ethics, party loyalty pushed aside common logic and at every single turn, greed ruled over real compassion.
Gore started with a simple promise.
Just moments ago, I spoke with George W. Bush and congratulated him on becoming the 43rd president of the United States, and I promised him that I wouldn't call him back this time.
And he didn't, Gore left public life and let Bush have the stage. 9-11 happened and Bush started two wars before we heard from him again and when we did, he was the first public voice to express outrage against the war. Oh how the right wingers denounced him (and use for that matter) as traitors worthy of hanging.
Bush gave us his laundry list:
I know America wants reconciliation and unity. I know Americans want progress. And we must seize this moment and deliver.
Together, guided by a spirit of common sense, common courtesy and common goals, we can unite and inspire the American citizens.
Together, we will work to make all our public schools excellent, teaching every student of every background and every accent, so that no child is left behind.
Together we will save Social Security and renew its promise of a secure retirement for generations to come.
Together we will strengthen Medicare and offer prescription drug coverage to all of our seniors.
Together we will give Americans the broad, fair and fiscally responsible tax relief they deserve.
Together we'll have a bipartisan foreign policy true to our values and true to our friends, and we will have a military equal to every challenge and superior to every adversary.
Together we will address some of society's deepest problems one person at a time, by encouraging and empowering the good hearts and good works of the American people.
This is the essence of compassionate conservatism and it will be a foundation of my administration.
These priorities are not merely Republican concerns or Democratic concerns; they are American responsibilities.
You should get out a piece of paper and check off every item as each one of these promises - each and EVERY one has been broken. They weren't broken is a manner where Bush tried to keep his word, he purposefully disregarded his promises to all Americans and even his supporters in the conservative middle class. From where I sit, that is naked and open deception.
And the lies kept coming - WMD in Iraq being the largest to date.
When Gore's movie came out, Americans went to see it, some liberal and some conservative and yet most came away with a grating feeling - all wondering what could have been.
We now know that Bush not only ignored direct warnings about Al Qaeda on December 19th, 2000, but looked toward Iraq. Emphasis added.
Moving forward with transition efforts delayed by more than five weeks of legal wrangling over those votes, the president-elect also visited with President Clinton at the White House for a meeting he described as "high energy."
The two men discussed transition issues, the economy and national security during the meeting, which last about two hours.
Some Bush advisers, as well as Republicans in the U.S. Congress, have also openly advocated arming the Iraqi opposition in an attempt to overthrow the Iraqi leader -- a step that the Clinton administration carefully avoided.
Some analysts said the Bush administration would be going down a blind alley if it seriously expected to restore the cohesion of the alliance which defeated Iraq in 1991 and to plug all the gaps breached since then in the sanctions.
What might have been.
Vice-President Gore ended his speech with the second and only other promise from that speech.
Some have asked whether I have any regrets and I do have one regret: that I didn't get the chance to stay and fight for the American people over the next four years, especially for those who need burdens lifted and barriers removed, especially for those who feel their voices have not been heard. I heard you and I will not forget.
And neither will we Mr. Vice-President, neither will we.