January 16, 2011

"Today, we affirm a new commitment to live out our nation’s promise through civility, courage, compassion and character."

"America, at its best, matches a commitment to principle with a concern for civility. A civil society demands from each of us good will and respect, fair dealing and forgiveness... We must live up to the calling we share. Civility is not a tactic or a sentiment. It is the determined choice of trust over cynicism, of community over chaos. And this commitment, if we keep it, is a way to shared accomplishment."

Who said that? Did he get what he asked for?

ADDED: I got to that quote through a New Republic article written at the time of the Obama inauguration that had the teaser-title "Screw Civility: Why Bush-Bashing Should Be Obama's Eeelection Strategy." The link goes to my blogging about it (which riffs on the misspelling "eeelection"). Anyway, check out the advice the lofty news journal gave to Obama:
Obama should save the civility shtick for Republicans he'll have to work with. As for the guy retiring to Texas, the new administration should ensure he remains the useful foil he was during the 2008 campaign. That starts with letting nothing--not public amnesia, not nostalgia, and certainly not a statesmanlike gesture from the White House--lift him from the PR cellar. When the new crew opens up the books on Bush's government, they ought to let every embarrassing detail out....
Democrats ran against Herbert Hoover for decades; Republicans kicked around Jimmy Carter for a dozen years. If Bush's successors play their cards right, Democrats could use his legacy as a thumb on their side of the scale for a generation....
Civility shtick. Mmm hmm. Use it when it's useful. Don't be a chump.

43 comments:

Coketown said...

Oh. You mean this civility thing is just a poll-tested, vapid talking point recycled by each administration? Sort of like "children are our most precious resource," only dumber.

mesquito said...

Fat lot of good it did him, too.

rhhardin said...

This speech is brought to you by the letter "C".

Coketown said...

Our nation's promise through civility, courage, compassion, and character...and carat, color, cut, and clarity. Which of these items does not belong? Civility. I'm sure it looked good in the word processor, but sound it out and it all goes to hell.

DADvocate said...

Yeah. But he used a taunting tone of voice when he said it.

Plus, he caused Al to go crazy, grow a beard, gain weight, frequent massage parlors and eventually divorce Tipper.

Skyler said...

Hah. I guessed right.

bagoh20 said...

He was an extremely civil holder of that office while faced with the most shrill, unbalanced and ad hominem opposition in history. I disagreed with him often, but was always impressed and sometimes disappointed by his unwavering civility in responsive to it.

mesquito said...

Did he get what he asked for?

Indeed. Didn't you notice how, overnight, the sneering ugly tone in The New Republic changed to one of resepectful disagreement?

edutcher said...

Somebody should have told those guys the "Bush did it" thing would wear out.

Oh, that's right, everything was going to be swell because The Zero and his crew were so smart.

Too bad he didn't at least make nice with the Congressional Republicans. "I won" is really coming back to bite him.

Florida said...

"And I thank Vice President Gore for a contest conducted with spirit and ended with grace."

Hard to believe that George W. Bush was that magnanimous in victory.

Look what it got him for the next 8 years.

He should have had the Secret Service escort Gore from the property.

PaulV said...

Barack H. Bush continues W's policies in Iran, Iraq and Gitmo. Use Studnet virus in Iran. Just wait until dem wackos call him out.

hombre said...

George Bush's demeanor was a credit to the office of POTUS, but he was at times overly restrained.

He lost the first debate to Kerry because he was unwilling to offer the only adequate response to Kerry's comments which was: "Are you kidding? You lying sack of shit!"

I will never forget the look of incredulity on Bush's face as he listened to Kerry.

PaulV said...

Forgot the tax cuts for the rich, which ut seems the nonrich also got. Plus more Homeland Security and warrantless searches

Kirby Olson said...

Jeb was on Fox last night and he said he didn't care about illegal immigration and was also talking about civility. Maybe it's something sweeping through the upper echelons.

Caesar probably wished that he talked more about it before they turned him into a tossed salad.

edutcher said...

Jeb is preparing the battle space for '16. Immigration was Dr Rove's recipe for nailing down the Hispanic vote.

You can see how well it's worked since '04.

PS The Bushes are always civil; that's why they always end up getting their heads handed to them by some disciple of Uncle Saul.

Youngblood said...

"That starts with letting nothing--not public amnesia, not nostalgia, and certainly not a statesmanlike gesture from the White House--lift him from the PR cellar."

The author was envisioning an Obama White House capable of statesmanlike gestures! How adorable!

Oh, the halcyon days of January 2009, back when the Democrats talked about the 2008 as a realigning election and Republicans as the new Whigs or a regional rump party!

Michael said...

Bush should have pushed back more, especially through surrogates. His civility is what has taught the tea parties that it is a losing strategy. On the other hand, Bush's approval rating is above Obama's two years later. The worst example was the "sixteen words" which should never have been conceded.

Maguro said...

The Bushes have always been big believers in the idea that importing as many impoverished, uneducated Mexicans as possible is good for the country and the Republican Party. Their theory is being put to the test in California, and the results don't look so hot.

Youngblood said...

Edutcher,

Which Alinskyites beat out which Bushes again?

DADvocate said...

If Bush's successors play their cards right, Democrats could use his legacy as a thumb on their side of the scale for a generation....

The Dems really blew that advice. In two short years, they've made nearly everyone nostalgic for the Bush years. As far as someone's legacy tipping the scales for a generation, that may still happen, but it won't be Bush's legacy.

Fen said...

Its an old tactic. Islam is best known for utilizing it - call for a cease fire until you can regroup.

Fuck Obama. Fuck the Democrats. And fuck the MSM who conspired to demonize the Tea Party. Eric Fuller is just one face of the many Frankensteins they've created with their hatemongering.

AST said...

One of the things I admire about W. is that he steadfastly refused to criticize his predecessor or respond to the vitriol in the press against him. It was instructive that it had no effect on the hatred of him amongst liberals. It seemed to make them more crazy.

That performance is one of the reasons I view the current calls for civility from the left as just more baiting. I don't trust a word they say.

R.L. Hunter said...

Today is the 20th anniversary of the commencement of Operation Desert Storm

lucid said...

In recent years, under Franklin Foer, Jonathan Chait, Noam Scheiber, and others, The New Republic has been all that is wrong with the left--intolerant, small-minded, both arrogant and insecure, and anxious to disparage and de-legitimize anyone who does not agree with them.

kent said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Penny said...

"Did he get what he asked for?"

Santa Claus must have been too busy to worry about what the President wanted.

kent said...

"Rush Limbaugh, straight shooter. Way to go, pig man! Way to go! Choke on your neck fat, you rancid, filthy right-wing freak! Straight shooter, mmm-hmmm!"

Leftard radio demagogue Mike Malloy. Just three days ago.

The left. "Civility."

*snort*

Paul Zrimsek said...

"The most important thing, my boy, is sincerity. If you can fake that, you've got it made."

Lem said...

Wow...

When the Sunday talk show was all about Palin and her bloody use of the term "blood libel" still prevailing as her sin against humanity.. I for one was giving up hope.. And then here we have the republican we could say with some determination to be hated more than Sarah Palin speaking this way or ant way.. because it not about the words now..

It feels like the shield Ronald Reagan spoke about.. the shield that would render nuclear weapons obsolete is or has rendered their nukes obsolete...

OMG.. forgive them for they do not know what they do.

GWB is as if raising from the grave..

Hallelujah!!!

Lem said...

The value of these blogs..

does anybody think we would remember this shit had some people not foking to do with the foking love affair of the MSM and the democrats been paying foking attention?

Thank God for you bloody foking bunch!!!

Lem said...

I'm very disappointed with my Patriots.. but since practically everybody here was rooting for the Jets.. and nobody here harangued me to my face about it.. I guess it's ok to come back and say the week off that the best NFL record team gets SUCKS.. period.

A week off b4 a playoff is a death nail.

Lem said...

Since the movie used this version of the f bomb I thought this was a safe way to express myself while also in keeping with our new civility bullshit ;)

oh yea baby.. I'm keeping it civil.. civil is the new real don't you know?

Fen said...

"Rush Limbaugh, straight shooter. Way to go, pig man! Way to go! Choke on your neck fat, you rancid, filthy right-wing freak! Straight shooter, mmm-hmmm!" - Leftard radio demagogue Mike Malloy. Just three days ago.

And that could just as easily been AlphaLiberal, DownTownLad, FormerLawStudent, HDHouse or Ritmo.

kent said...

And that could just as easily been AlphaLiberal, DownTownLad, FormerLawStudent, HDHouse or Ritmo

The sentiments aren't howlingly unhinged enough for the first three; and the sentence structure too literate for the latter two.

Alex said...

The thing is going postal on Limbaugh might stir up the leftie red-meat crowd, but it doesn't play well in swing-voter land. Not at all. So the left dismisses such voters calling them "low information" as a way to soothe their butt-hurt from this November.

edutcher said...

Youngblood said...

Edutcher,

Which Alinskyites beat out which Bushes again?


The Establishment Media in '92 against Poppy and from '05 on against Dubya.

Paco Wové said...

"The New Republic has been all that is wrong with the left..."

I used to have a subscription, back in the '80's and early '90's. I let it lapse around '95 or so... I got a "please subscribe" letter in 2006, and I was all like "first, pledge that you will never publish Jonathan Chait ever again, dudes, and then maybe we'll talk."

Roger J. said...

Kent please put a warning on a comment like that--my monitor can take only so many coffee spurts

Phil 3:14 said...

This speech is brought to you by the letter "C".
And so good at demonstrating the vagaries of the English language:
- c pronounced like an "S"
- co with different pronounciations
- ch but not like "choo-choo"

If only he had included chutzpah and czar (OK, I know those are really English words)

Peter said...

One of the first things I learned as a rookie was to always be civil, just as soon as I got the suspect in cuffs. Until then it was important to seem like I ate rusted barb wire and broken glass for breachfast every morning, it kept from actually having to fight the assho, er, suspects.

Seems as if the left and the political class have also learned this lesson, "Oh, please, lets all be friends and reason together". That tone will change, although I do not think that the political class and the left will be nearly so nice as I usually was.

Stan said...

Frank Davis, radicals at Columbia, Ayers, Dohrn, Wright, Pfleger, Meeks. Maybe if Obama hadn't been so tight with those who instigated violent riots and engaged in terrorism and bombings, he might have more credibility.

Probably not. I'm not sure he can do anything at this point to have more credibility.

Methadras said...

Coketown said...

Sort of like "children are our most precious resource," only dumber.


Actually children are our dumbest resource. We have to do a lot of shit to keep them from dying so they can repeat the cycle.

Methadras said...

Obama and his ilk are full of shit. They are basically products of the left and therefore is a testament to the dangerous and frankly evil ideology that leftism truly and really is. I've said it before and I'll say it again, it's easy to be a leftist. A Conservative, not so much.