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Not Quite Churchillian
The Enterprise Blog ^ | June 18, 2010 | Marc Thiessen

Posted on 06/18/2010 9:54:58 PM PDT by mark_interrupted

Not Quite Churchillian

By Marc Thiessen June 18, 2010, 11:36 am

This week, President Obama delivered what has been declared by commentators on the left and right one of the worst Oval Office addresses in presidential history. How ironic that Obama’s worst rhetorical hour came in the very same week we celebrate the 70th anniversary of perhaps the greatest speech ever delivered in the English language: Winston Churchill’s “Finest Hour” address.

Seven decades ago today, on June 18, 1940, Churchill rallied Britain and the world to fight on in a battle he declared would determine “the survival of Christian civilization.” As the New York Times reports today, in a story marking the anniversary, Churchill agonized over every word and phrase, marking up the text in red and blue ink, editing up until the moment of delivery, even adding phrases on the fly as he spoke. “Equally intriguing, the final typescript of the speech is set out, at least in the final passage building up to ‘their finest hour,’ in blank verse format, with five-line paragraphs set out in indented type, a form that the Churchill Archives Center’s director, Allen Packwood, compared to the Old Testament Book of Psalms.” Packwood rightly says of Churchill, “This is a man who raised the art of speechmaking to high literature.”

Seventy years ago this week, Churchill gave us these memorable words:

Hitler knows that he will have to break us in this Island or lose the war. If we can stand up to him, all Europe may be free and the life of the world may move forward into broad, sunlit uplands. But if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science. Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that, if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, ‘This was their finest hour.’

Seventy years later, Barack Obama gave us this:

What has defined us as a nation since our founding is the capacity to shape our destiny—our determination to fight for the America we want for our children. Even if we’re unsure exactly what that looks like. Even if we don’t yet know precisely how we’re going to get there. We know we’ll get there.

It was one of the worst—and most revealing—lines ever uttered by an American president. Winston Churchill echoed the Psalms; Barack Obama echoed Alice in Wonderland:

“Cheshire Puss … Would you tell me please, which way I ought to go from here?” “That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the cat. “I don’t much care where –” said Alice. “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the cat. “— so long as I get somewhere,” Alice added as an explanation. “Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the cat, “if only you walk long enough.”

This week, Obama gave us this frightening insight into his presidency—he does not care where he is leading us, but we are sure to get there—and in so doing smashed the myth that he would one day stand beside Churchill as one of the greatest orators in modern history.

It was not, suffice it to say, his finest hour.


TOPICS: History; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: churchill; obama
Puts Obama in perspective
1 posted on 06/18/2010 9:54:58 PM PDT by mark_interrupted
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To: mark_interrupted

Easy to understand. Churchill believed what he was saying, Obama didn’t.


2 posted on 06/18/2010 9:58:00 PM PDT by Patrick1
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To: mark_interrupted
This week, Obama gave us this frightening insight into his presidency—he does not care where he is leading us, but we are sure to get there...

Nonsense - he cares very much. But as long as he keeps saying he doesn't know where we're going, he can keep denying that he's deliberately forcing us there. Which, considering "there" is the complete destruction of America, is a fairly important thing to preserve plausible deniability over.

3 posted on 06/18/2010 10:00:10 PM PDT by Talisker (When you find a turtle on top of a fence post, you can be damn sure it didn't get there on it's own.)
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To: mark_interrupted

This administration is full of irony. The health care bill was signed the same day (235 years later) Patrick Henry gave the “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death” speech.


4 posted on 06/18/2010 10:01:17 PM PDT by Domandred (Fdisk, format, and reinstall the entire .gov system.)
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To: Patrick1

Easy to understand. Churchill believed what he was saying, Obama didn’t.
*************************
Obama is just readin’ a bunch of crap some college-looking, beer-pong players wrote for him.

He doesn’t care what it says, he’s just worried about the next tee time, vacation, play, date night or where the best ice cream shop is.

He holds his nose and plays President as if taking a bad medicine.


5 posted on 06/18/2010 10:04:13 PM PDT by Irenic
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To: mark_interrupted

His finest 15 mins are up.


6 posted on 06/18/2010 10:13:33 PM PDT by bray (Did Rush say Complete Failure?)
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To: mark_interrupted
Seventy years later, Barack Obama gave us this: What has defined us as a nation since our founding is the capacity to shape our destiny—our determination to fight for the America we want for our children. Even if we’re unsure exactly what that looks like. Even if we don’t yet know precisely how we’re going to get there. We know we’ll get there.

Barack Obama was an Affirmative Action candidate that had never even managed a 7-11 Store. .... And it painfully shows.

He was elected President of the United States because he could read a TelePrompter really well and because his absentee father blessed him with a Politically Correct skin color for the Politically Correct early 21st Century.

In Joe Biden's words, "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy,"

How white-guilt, racist and condescending can you possibly get?

Let's not judge a Presidential candidate by his character or by his qualifications to hold America's highest office. Let's just judge him by the color of his skin and the fact that he meets the minimum requirements for being a high school valedictorian.

Sorry, Dr. King. Your dream is still not fulfilled.

Those facts, right there, puts America as a seriopus contender for The National Darwin Award for the 21st Century.

If Obama had been a white male candidate, held to non-emotional standards, his utter lack of experience would have made his candidacy a joke.

All of this is not Obama's fault. It is the fault of the simple majority of American voters: Both the fools on the Left and in the Center that thought that Obama was a Savior and the fools on the Right that preached that McCain would be just as bad as Obama.

One more stupid election and America may end up in the Dustbin of History at the end of the 21st Century.

7 posted on 06/18/2010 10:43:59 PM PDT by Polybius
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To: mark_interrupted

“Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.”
— Winston S. Churchill

Unfortunately this applies to our POTUS.


8 posted on 06/18/2010 10:44:11 PM PDT by Huskrrrr
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To: Patrick1
WAKE UP AMERICA

Click for a shortYouTube Video -- 'The UnCola Prez'


9 posted on 06/18/2010 10:45:44 PM PDT by BobP (The piss-stream media - Never to be watched again in my house)
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To: mark_interrupted

Quite right.


10 posted on 06/18/2010 11:25:58 PM PDT by americanophile (November can't come fast enough....)
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To: americanophile


11 posted on 06/18/2010 11:29:59 PM PDT by americanophile (November can't come fast enough....)
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To: mark_interrupted

There will not be another Churchillian figure in our lifetime.


12 posted on 06/18/2010 11:32:32 PM PDT by chasio649 (amused)
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To: chasio649

In my opinion, Churchill was a parallel of Abraham Lincoln; one sent by God in an earthly mission to save their respective countries. Although it does look perhaps somewhat gloomy right now, I feel sure that we are not quite done with that concept, and that another will come along in that same capacity as the two august gentlemen as is cited here.


13 posted on 06/19/2010 1:04:12 AM PDT by tenthirteen
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To: mark_interrupted

“When you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there” — Lewis Caroll, author of Alice in Wonderland.


14 posted on 06/19/2010 2:51:11 AM PDT by Soul of the South (When times are tough the tough get going.)
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