Friday, January 22, 2010

Them's fightin' words

President Barack Obama, speaking today in Elyria, Ohio:
Let me tell you — so long as I have the privilege of serving as your President, I’ll never stop fighting for you. I’ll take my lumps, too. I’ll never stop fighting to bring jobs back to Elyria. I’ll never stop fighting for an economy where hard work is rewarded, where responsibility is honored, where accountability is upheld, where we’re creating the jobs of tomorrow.

So long as I’m President, I’ll never stop fighting for policies that will help restore home values, to redeem the investment that folks have made. I’ll never stop fighting to give our kids the best education possible; to take the tens of billions of dollars we pay banks to act as middlemen on student loans and invest that money in the students who need it.

I’ll never stop fighting to give every American a fair shake. That’s why the very first bill I signed into law was the Lilly Ledbetter Act to uphold the principle of equal pay for equal work for men and women alike. Especially in this age when so many families need two paychecks to get by.

So long as I’m President, I’ll never stop fighting to protect you from the kind of deceptive practices we’ve seen from some in the financial sector. That’s why I signed a Credit Card Bill of Rights into law to protect you from surprise charges, retroactive rate hikes, and other unfair rules. And that’s why I’m fighting for a tough Consumer Financial Protection Agency to protect you against those hidden overdraft fees that can make a single ATM withdrawal cost thirty dollars or more.

I’ll never stop fighting to open up government. That’s why we put in place the toughest ethics laws and toughest transparency rules of any administration in history.

So long as I’m President, I’ll never stop fighting to cut waste and abuse in Washington; to eliminate what we don’t need — to pay for what we do; to rein in exploding deficits we’ve been accumulating for too long.

And I’m going to keep up the fight for real, meaningful health insurance reforms. That’s why we expanded the children’s health insurance program to include four million more kids. And that’s why I’ll continue fighting for reform that will hold the insurance industry accountable and bring more stability and security to folks in our health care system.

These are some of the fights we’ve had. And I can promise you, there will be more fights in the days ahead. We’re having one of them right now — because I want to charge Wall Street a modest fee to repay taxpayers in full for saving their skin in a time of need.
Al Gore's nomination speech, August 17, 2000:
In my first term, a family in Hardeman County, Tennessee wrote a letter and told how worried they were about toxic waste that had been dumped near their home. I held some of the first hearings on the issue. And ever since, I've been there in the fight against the big polluters.

...For almost 25 years now, I've been fighting for people.

...I will fight for a prescription drug benefit for all seniors under Medicare.

...I will fight to rebuild and modernize our crumbling schools, and reduce class size.

...I will fight for a real, enforceable Patients' Bill of Rights.

...At a time of almost unimaginable medical breakthroughs, we will fight for affordable health care for all - so patients and ordinary people are not left powerless and broke.

...I will fight for the single greatest commitment to education since the G.I. Bill.

...I'll fight for tax cuts that go to the right people - to the working families who have the toughest time paying taxes and saving for the future.

...I'll fight for a new, tax-free way to help you save and build a bigger nest egg for your retirement.

...A new prescription drug benefit under Medicare for all our seniors - that's a family value. And let me tell you: I will fight for it, and the other side will not.

...I know one thing about the job of the President. It is the only job in the Constitution that is charged with the responsibility of fighting for all the people.

...So I say to you tonight: if you entrust me with the Presidency, I will fight for you.

...We will honor equal rights and fight for an equal day's pay for an equal day's work.

...That's why I'll fight to add another 50,000 new police - community police who help prevent crime by establishing real relationships between law enforcement and neighborhood residents - which, incidentally, is the opposite of racial profiling, which must be brought to an end.

...I will fight for a crime victims' bill of rights, including a Constitutional amendment to make sure that victims, and not just criminals, are guaranteed rights in our justice system.

I'll fight to toughen penalties on those who misuse the Internet to prey on our children and violate our privacy. And I'll fight to make every school in this nation drug-free and gun-free.

...My father didn't know whether he could help those families -- but he believed he had to try. And never in the years to come - in Congress, and in the United States Senate -- did he lose sight of the reason he entered public service: to fight for the people, not the powerful.

...But the Presidency is more than a popularity contest. It's a day-by-day fight for people.
So who's the real street fighting man? As I tally it, Barack Obama clocks in with 13 uses of the word, while Al Gore has an impressive 19. However, Gore's speech was much longer at 5,486 words, while Obama only used 1,992. That means that Obama actually had a higher ratio of using the word, with "fight" being used once out of every 200 words while Gore used it once out of every 300.

But that may actually understate matters. From the first sentence Gore used the word fight until its last utterance, 3,886 words were spoken -- giving him a ratio of about 0.5 percent. Obama simply blows him away, using the term 13 times out of a mere 521 words -- for a 2.5 percent ratio.

The man who promised to dispense with old ways and embrace a new kind of politics has now chosen one of the oldest plays in the political book -- populism.

Update: More here from Tom Bevan. Love the William Jennings Bryan reference.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I conclude that Obama thinks people are stupid and business is evil. He has to fight for us because we are too stupid to take care of ourselves. Not just individual business people are evil, but the entire banking, finance, student loan, and insurance (plus many other) groups are wholly intent on defrauding people. No wonder he and Michelle hate this country.