Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Gore’s Scream

Here is Al Gore’s rant to MoveOnPac. I saw it. It was unbearable. I was enraged at first, then felt ashamed that he was incapable of feeling shame. He is now irrelevant, at best becoming the spokesman for about five percent of the American people. John Podhoretz says this: "A man who was very, very nearly president of the United States has been reduced to sounding like one of those people in Times Square with a megaphone screaming about God’s justice. It is almost impossible to believe that this man was once vice president of the United States.

As a stalwart supporter of the war, I would naturally be inclined to find Gore’s line of attack discomfiting and upsetting, even enraging. Instead, I feel an intense sadness and a great sense of relief. The sadness comes from the sight of a man losing his sanity in public. The relief comes from the fact that he is not, and never will be, the president of the United States." Well said, John.

Discussions - 17 Comments

He managed to hide the fact that he’s Howard Dean longer than Howard Dean did.

Bob: Well put!

Not only was Gore the potential president from the last election, he WAS Vice President for 8 years. Speaks alot for the Clinton "insite" into people doesn’t it.

the true shame is the incompetence of our current administration, and it requires a voice calling out in the wilderness to point it out.

More important than Gore’s psychological situation, if there is one, is the fact that 40 percent of the American people are so wedded to the Democratic party that they would vote for Gore were he running today, even though he’s saying what he is. Gore may only "speak for 5 percent," but that 5 percent is very energetic and contains many influential people. If whatever decent Democrats remain won’t condemn him, some in the "silent majority" will come to think such views are normal.

It’s a mistake to see Gore primarily as a sad, isolated case. He is simply saying in sharper language what the leadership of the Democratic party, and a vast number of its voters, really believe. Gore will probably never be president, and that’s indeed a relief. But more than we would like to think, he speaks for an entire party that might be returned to office in November.
Let’s not be complacent.


That he was Veep for 8 years only serves as additional proof, absent tragedy, of the utter irrelevance of that office.

No no no you are forgetting of course. Al "reinvented" government during his tenure. Not to mention he invented the internet. Now dont you feel bad belittling his contribution as VP?

I remember his reinventing government as Vice President - splendid job! - but I thought he invented the internet while still serving in the Senate.

But I split hairs; engaging in disputation over the timing of a timeless achievement is just another hobgoblin of my inferior and petty mind. All hail Prince Al.

Not to mention he invented the internet. Now dont you feel bad belittling his contribution as VP?

You are an ignorant fool.

Actually you might be the fool. Or do you have difficulty detecting sarcasm in prose often? You first clue could have been reinventing in quotes but you missed that. So who might the ignorant one be now? I would have expected conservatives to not stoop to DU name calling either, Todd.

Actually, since you didn’t put "invented the internet" in quotes, it looks like you are the fool, Gary.

I thought Gore gave a great speech. Looks like he must have got something right, since conservatives(here and elsewhere) can only come up with tittering, petty comments about "inventing the internet." That’s about as puerile as the comments on Bush’s inability to ride a bicycle.
In the way of contrast, I had never heard Bush speek before, until last week(too busy with my professional life). Regardless of the content, he sounded just like what one of my Republican friends pointed out: a former hard core alcoholic; slow and dull witted throughout.
But David is at least right about one thing: it looks like after having total control of the govt for the first time in a long time, the conservatives are going to get sent home. At least that’s what the trend in polls in most states is saying. If things continue to go badly for the Bush campaign, there’s no doubt conservative strategists will do what they’ve always done so well in the past: resort to vicious smears, character assasination, lableling their opponents as unpatriotic, etc. Don’t look for any slogans this time like "compassionate conservatism!"

Correction: please change "speek" to speak. Sorry.

"Correction: please change "speek" to speak. Sorry."

No problem. You seem pretty "too busy with my professional life" normal to me, a more political type of guy. But obviously you do seem to know what you like to hear from a leader (like Al). Still, I wonder, Gore’s speech was pretty abrasive and inflammatory given the fact that we are at war. Is this the sort of direction you, as a non-political type, really want to go? I mean, how far is it, from what Gore laid out in his speech, to an all out civil war in America?

Link’s broken. Here’s the transcript of the speech:

" from what Gore laid out in his speech, to an all out civil war in America? "
Marc: why do you think civil war,for heaven’s sake, is even a remote consequence of what Gore said?
Now, after going over again what he said in his speech, I’m even more impressed. I think the reason why so many conservatives are critical(seeing red, even) is that Gore did more than summarize the failings of the current administration. He hit a nerve: the prime mover for every conservative I’ve ever known is Fear. Sure, you can go back to people like Lincoln(very brave and wise man), but conservatives(and I’m talking about political conservatives here) in modern times are, as a general rule, terribly fearful people. And, not surprisingly, ruthless and brutal when they feel threatened.
Sure, you can always dredge up examples of fearful, ruthless liberals, but it’s not a common characteristic(at least not in my experience).
What do I like to hear in a leader? Intelligence, honesty and compassion. That definitely excludes Bush. But it’s also why I admired Goldwater(among others).

I found Gore’s speech to be very interesting. I am not sure how well it was delivered of course....

If only he removed some of the crap about his father and his service in the army, short the parts that make his speech something other than a serious look at the use and abuse of fear in politics...

Politically I think his speech is genius. Nixon’s birthday just pased, and new information was released to the public on Kissinger...trying to draw connections between Bush and Nixon might be fruitfull for Democrats...

I would like to take a class given by Gore on Habbermas. Certainly he interprets a lot from this lens....

I don’t think you can doubt Gore’s conviction not without assuming things he would never be assuming himself...

Some might find his view of the constitution to be disgusting, but it does seem that his framework is tenable, and he even mentions Lincoln and Moses of all things...(great lawgivers it seems?)

This is a very interesting speech...

I find it quite illuminating...

Gore is a proffessor at an Ivy league school, yet he isn’t harping on Christopher Columbus, he isn’t accusing Lewis+Clark of paving the way for the genocide of american indians, and he isn’t denegrating the Wright Brothers, he is holding them up as those who overcame illusory fears!!!

If his quote of Eisenhower didn’t have the political motive of painting Bush to be Nixon it would be very interesting...

"Any who acts as if freedom’s defenses are to be found in suppression and suspicion and fear confess a doctrine that is alien to america." A very Millian sentiment. In fact it is a serious question for those who would juxtapose Burke and Mill and attempt to ask what things can be discussed fruitfully. As it is, essentially Gore paints Republicans to be Hobbesian, a politic of fear vs. the Millian Democrats who employ a politics of trust... -John Lewis

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