Monthly Archives: December 2006

AP Lede Of The Day

December 29th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

From the Associate Press

President Bush worked nearly three hours at his Texas ranch on Thursday to design a new U.S. policy in Iraq, then emerged to say that he and his advisers need more time to craft the plan he’ll announce in the new year.

He then took a nap. It’s hard work being president.

Joe Lieberman Makes Me Sick

December 29th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

Sometimes it boggles my mind that the man I happily voted for in 2000 as the Democratic nominee for Vice President has so sunk to the depths he has. Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT), who for some reason the press continues to call a Democrat, has lined up with Bush and Cheney and against the American people, the US generals, and even the troops on the ground in calling for more war and more death.

I’ve just spent 10 days traveling in the Middle East and speaking to leaders there, all of which has made one thing clearer to me than ever: While we are naturally focused on Iraq, a larger war is emerging. On one side are extremists and terrorists led and sponsored by Iran, on the other moderates and democrats supported by the United States. Iraq is the most deadly battlefield on which that conflict is being fought. How we end the struggle there will affect not only the region but the worldwide war against the extremists who attacked us on Sept. 11, 2001.

Ahh, invoking 9/11. How Rovian of him.

To turn around the crisis we need to send more American troops while we also train more Iraqi troops and strengthen the moderate political forces in the national government. After speaking with our military commanders and soldiers there, I strongly believe that additional U.S. troops must be deployed to Baghdad and Anbar province — an increase that will at last allow us to establish security throughout the Iraqi capital, hold critical central neighborhoods in the city, clamp down on the insurgency and defeat al-Qaeda in that province.

Didn’t we try that six months ago? Didn’t violence and death increase? Are we really supposed to believe that 20,000 or even 50,000 more troops will stop the violence in a country of 26 million where thousands are killed each month? Sen. Lieberman closes with his favorite strawman:

Rather than engaging in hand-wringing, carping or calls for withdrawal, we must summon the vision, will and courage to take the difficult and decisive steps needed for success and, yes, victory in Iraq.

Ahh Joe, you’re just so courageous. What are a few more dead Americans so you can look brave? What are a few more thousand dead Iraqis so you can be a strong centrist with “vision?”

Call Senator Lieberman and tell him to stop wasting lives for his own ego. (202) 224-4041.

2006: What A Year!

December 28th, 2006 by Matthew Slutsky

The Three, well Four, Amigos

Friends,

What a year it’s been! As the fall turns to winter (except that it’s still 70 degrees?!?!) and the madness that was Election 2006 subsides, we here at DoubleSpeak wanted to take a minute to thank you for your support, hard-work and dedication over the past year. There is no doubt that 2006 is a year none of us will ever forget.

After traveling to over 20 states in 50 days, we were all in need of some time to reconnect with family and tend to our “day jobs.” While we miss living out of a 1999 Toyota Sienna minivan, it is very good to be home.

We are incredibly proud of what DoubleSpeak accomplished in such a short amount of time. Thousands of activists downloaded the show, we appeared on numerous radio stations across the country talking progressive politics and grassroots activism, and we interviewed dozens of high-profile candidates for office all over the country. And, while doing our part to help America we had the time of our lives traveling as brothers-in-arms to help secure a sweeping Democratic victory.

While things have been slow on the website since the Election, we plan to hit the ground running in 2007 with a new look, new features, and video! We will continue to bring you quality interviews with decision makers and party leaders both inside and outside of Washington, D.C. Of course, we’ll also begin our coverage of the 2008 election, which is already heating up!

We had a fantastic year. We owe all of our listeners a debt of gratitude. Thank you for taking the time to listen and to share your ideas and your pennies as we look forward to continuing this journey with you in the New Year.

Finally, we want to dedicate the work we’ve done over the past year to our good friend Mike W. who is serving in Iraq. Mike is doing a hell of a job out there and we hope to have him back on American soil soon. We love and miss you, buddy.

See you down the road a bit,

Matthew Slutsky, Host
Peter Slutsky, Host
Joshua Skaroff, Producer

Quote of The Day

December 28th, 2006 by Matthew Slutsky

“I’d rather explain a change of position any day than look a parent in the eye and tell them that their son or daughter had to die so that a broken policy could live.”

-Sen. John Kerry, Washington Post December 24, 2006

President Gerald R. Ford, 1913-2006

December 27th, 2006 by Alex

Gerald R. Ford, 1913-2006

Gerald Ford was the last of a dying breed, a species that seems as unreal to many progressives today as a unicorn: an honorable, centrist Republican President.

Ford was famously our only wholly unelected President, having replaced the disgraced Spiro T. Agnew as Vice-President and then ascending to the Presidency upon Richard Nixon’s resignation. Ford then made the tough decision to pardon Richard Nixon; a move for which he was chastised at the time, but praised by historians later for putting the ugly Watergate chapter of history behind America. This may have contributed to the Republicans’ landslide defeat in the 1974 midterms, as well as Gerald Ford’s only loss in 1976. Yet the essential decency of Ford’s character always shone through; despite the hostile political climate, Gerald Ford was nearly elected in his own right in 1976. Had the election been held a few weeks later, Ford’s momentum probably would have carried him to victory over Jimmy Carter. A few thousand votes switched in Ohio would have elected Ford, and he was certainly not helped by the New York Daily News’ famous headline after failing to bailout the city; “Ford to City: Drop Dead.”

Gerald Ford’s narrow victory over a right-wing challenge from Ronald Reagan in the 1976 primaries was a harbinger of the direction the Republican Party would take. Gerald Ford was the last Republican President to come from the ranks of the entrepreneurial, small-town Midwest, and was the kind of man who dominated the Republican Party from the beginning of the twentieth century through the Goldwater Revolution. Ford was a committed internationalist as well as an anti-Communist, in favor of civil rights and civil liberties, and a small government, but not one so minute as to be cruel and ineffective. Ford’s Vice-President, Nelson Rockefeller, exemplified the fundamentally liberal Republican elite that would soon become obsolete in American politics. The Republican Party instead came to speak with a Southern accent, dominated by theocrats and overwhelming corporate power. Gerald Ford remained proudly pro-choice until the end in a party where such views had become unfashionable and Ford would not apologize for appointing John Paul Stevens to the Supreme Court, a man savaged by most of today’s conservatives as a “liberal activist.”

President Ford’s record as president in domestic and foreign policy was mixed at best, but it is a tragedy that today’s Republican Party is more a Party of Bush than a Party of Ford.

By: Alex Madorsky

Gerald Ford: The Accidental President

December 27th, 2006 by Peter Slutsky

TIME.com:

He was not only an accidental President but a famously and endearingly accident-prone one as well. Fate evidently had elaborate designs on Gerald Rudolph Ford and fulfilled them on the world’s stage in a dazzling combination of high pomp and low slapstick.

He was the nation’s first appointed Vice President, chosen in October 1973 by President Richard Nixon under the terms of the recently ratified 25th Amendment to succeed the disgraced Spiro Agnew. Less than a year later, on Aug. 9, 1974, Nixon resigned rather than face a Senate trial on three articles of impeachment passed by the House of Representatives, and Ford took the oath to be the 38th President of the U.S.


Read More…

Ford In Philly

December 27th, 2006 by Peter Slutsky

Will Bunch at the Philadelphia Inquirer did an interesting piece on President Gerald Ford’s connection to the city of Philadelphia.

My favorite line:

A lot happened to Ford and to his nation in those six decades. But though the flat-talking Midwesterner must have seemed like a slice of white bread in the provolone-and-onion-spiced world of Philly politics, this city still played a pivotal role in his career and his brief presidency.

Read the rest of this article.

The Death Of A President

December 27th, 2006 by Peter Slutsky

I’ll update this post as more statements come in on the passing of America’s 38th President.

Betty Ford on the passing of her husband, President Gerald Ford:

My family joins me in sharing the difficult news that Gerald Ford, our beloved husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather has passed away at 93 years of age. His life was filled with love of God, his family and his country.

President Bush on the passing of President Ford:

Laura and I are greatly saddened by the passing of former President Gerald R. Ford. President Ford was a great American who gave many years of dedicated service to our country. On August 9, 1974, after a long career in the House of Representatives and service as Vice President, he assumed the Presidency in an hour of national turmoil and division. With his quiet integrity, common sense, and kind instincts, President Ford helped heal our land and restore public confidence in the Presidency. The American people will always admire Gerald Ford’s devotion to duty, his personal character, and the honorable conduct of his administration. We mourn the loss of such a leader, and our 38th President will always have a special place in our Nation’s memory. On behalf of all Americans, Laura and I offer our deepest sympathies to Betty Ford and all of President Ford’s family. Our thoughts and prayers will be with them in the hours and days ahead.

Nancy Reagan on the passing of President Ford:

I was deeply saddened this evening when I heard of Jerry Ford’s death. Ronnie and I always considered him a dear friend and close political ally. His accomplishments and devotion to our country are vast, and even long after he left the Presidency he made it a point to speak out on issues important to us all. I know that his early support of stem cell research has been important in getting the U.S. Congress to debate the potential lifesaving cures and treatments that may result. I know the days ahead will be very difficult for Betty and my love and deepest sympathy go out to her and the entire Ford family.

President Clinton on the passing of President Ford:

Gerald Ford brought Americans together during a difficult chapter in our history with strength, integrity, and humility. All Americans should be grateful for his life of service; he served our nation well. To his great credit, he was the same hard-working, down-to-earth person the day he left the White House as he was when he first entered Congress almost 30 years earlier. We were honored to know President Ford. We are saddened by his death, and our prayers are with Betty and the entire Ford family.

Former President

December 27th, 2006 by Peter Slutsky

of the United States of America Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr. is dead at the age of 93. A truly sad day for America. Rest in peace, Mr. President.

Quote Of The Day

December 18th, 2006 by Matthew Slutsky

“I respect Harry Reid on it, but that’s not where I am.”

-Senator Ted Kennedy on the proposal to increase troop levels in Iraq over the coming months.