I would imagine most Americans of any age would recognize the above quote from John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address of January 20, 1961.  Amazing isn’t it that such a quote holds so much meaning to so many and has been and still is often repeated.

Yet, almost 50 years later, our President is being maligned and disparaged for daring to speak to students and to ask them the very same thing.  For those who continue to despise Obama and criticize every step and every move he makes, I am providing the text of the speech, long as it is. 

But, I imagine there will still be those who will find a hidden “agenda” somewhere in the words Obama will deliver tomorrow in Arlington, Virginia.

Prepared Remarks of President Barack Obama Back to School Event Arlington, Virginia
September 8, 2009

The President: Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today? I’m here with students at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia. And we’ve got students tuning in from all across America, kindergarten through twelfth grade. I’m glad you all could join us today. 
I know that for many of you, today is the first day of school. And for those of you in kindergarten, or starting middle or high school, it’s your first day in a new school, so it’s understandable if you’re a little nervous. I imagine there are some seniors out there who are feeling pretty good right now, with just one more year to go. And no matter what grade you’re in, some of you are probably wishing it were still summer, and you could’ve stayed in bed just a little longer this morning.
I know that feeling. When I was young, my family lived in Indonesia for a few years, and my mother didn’t have the money to send me where all the American kids went to school. So she decided to teach me extra lessons herself, Monday through Friday – at 4:30 in the morning.   
Now I wasn’t too happy about getting up that early. A lot of times, I’d fall asleep right there at the kitchen table. But whenever I’d complain, my mother would just give me one of those looks and say, “This is no picnic for me either, buster.”
So I know some of you are still adjusting to being back at school. But I’m here today because I have something important to discuss with you. I’m here because I want to talk with you about your education and what’s expected of all of you in this new school year. 
Now I’ve given a lot of speeches about education. And I’ve talked a lot about responsibility.
I’ve talked about your teachers’ responsibility for inspiring you, and pushing you to learn. 
I’ve talked about your parents’ responsibility for making sure you stay on track, and get your homework done, and don’t spend every waking hour in front of the TV or with that Xbox. 
I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for setting high standards, supporting teachers and principals, and turning around schools that aren’t working where students aren’t getting the opportunities they deserve. 
But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed. 
And that’s what I want to focus on today: the responsibility each of you has for your education. I want to start with the responsibility you have to yourself. 
Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide. 
Maybe you could be a good writer – maybe even good enough to write a book or articles in a newspaper – but you might not know it until you write a paper for your English class. Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone or a new medicine or vaccine – but you might not know it until you do a project for your science class. Maybe you could be a mayor or a Senator or a Supreme Court Justice, but you might not know that until you join student government or the debate team.
And no matter what you want to do with your life – I guarantee that you’ll need an education to do it. You want to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a police officer? You want to be a nurse or an architect, a lawyer or a member of our military? You’re going to need a good education for every single one of those careers. You can’t drop out of school and just drop into a good job. You’ve got to work for it and train for it and learn for it.
And this isn’t just important for your own life and your own future. What you make of your education will decide nothing less than the future of this country. What you’re learning in school today will determine whether we as a nation can meet our greatest challenges in the future. 
You’ll need the knowledge and problem-solving skills you learn in science and math to cure diseases like cancer and AIDS, and to develop new energy technologies and protect our environment. You’ll need the insights and critical thinking skills you gain in history and social studies to fight poverty and homelessness, crime and discrimination, and make our nation more fair and more free. You’ll need the creativity and ingenuity you develop in all your classes to build new companies that will create new jobs and boost our economy. 
We need every single one of you to develop your talents, skills and intellect so you can help solve our most difficult problems. If you don’t do that – if you quit on school – you’re not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country. 
Now I know it’s not always easy to do well in school. I know a lot of you have challenges in your lives right now that can make it hard to focus on your schoolwork.
I get it. I know what that’s like. My father left my family when I was two years old, and I was raised by a single mother who struggled at times to pay the bills and wasn’t always able to give us things the other kids had. There were times when I missed having a father in my life. There were times when I was lonely and felt like I didn’t fit in. 
So I wasn’t always as focused as I should have been. I did some things I’m not proud of, and got in more trouble than I should have. And my life could have easily taken a turn for the worse. 
But I was fortunate. I got a lot of second chances and had the opportunity to go to college, and law school, and follow my dreams. My wife, our First Lady Michelle Obama, has a similar story. Neither of her parents had gone to college, and they didn’t have much. But they worked hard, and she worked hard, so that she could go to the best schools in this country.
Some of you might not have those advantages. Maybe you don’t have adults in your life who give you the support that you need. Maybe someone in your family has lost their job, and there’s not enough money to go around. Maybe you live in a neighborhood where you don’t feel safe, or have friends who are pressuring you to do things you know aren’t right. 
But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for neglecting your homework or having a bad attitude. That’s no excuse for talking back to your teacher, or cutting class, or dropping out of school. That’s no excuse for not trying. 
Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future. 
That’s what young people like you are doing every day, all across America. 
Young people like Jazmin Perez, from Roma, Texas. Jazmin didn’t speak English when she first started school. Hardly anyone in her hometown went to college, and neither of her parents had gone either. But she worked hard, earned good grades, got a scholarship to Brown University, and is now in graduate school, studying public health, on her way to being Dr. Jazmin Perez.
I’m thinking about Andoni Schultz, from Los Altos, California, who’s fought brain cancer since he was three. He’s endured all sorts of treatments and surgeries, one of which affected his memory, so it took him much longer – hundreds of extra hours – to do his schoolwork. But he never fell behind, and he’s headed to college this fall. 
And then there’s Shantell Steve, from my hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Even when bouncing from foster home to foster home in the toughest neighborhoods, she managed to get a job at a local health center; start a program to keep young people out of gangs; and she’s on track to graduate high school with honors and go on to college.
Jazmin, Andoni and Shantell aren’t any different from any of you. They faced challenges in their lives just like you do. But they refused to give up. They chose to take responsibility for their education and set goals for themselves. And I expect all of you to do the same. 
That’s why today, I’m calling on each of you to set your own goals for your education – and to do everything you can to meet them. Your goal can be something as simple as doing all your homework, paying attention in class, or spending time each day reading a book. Maybe you’ll decide to get involved in an extracurricular activity, or volunteer in your community. Maybe you’ll decide to stand up for kids who are being teased or bullied because of who they are or how they look, because you believe, like I do, that all kids deserve a safe environment to study and learn. Maybe you’ll decide to take better care of yourself so you can be more ready to learn. And along those lines, I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well, so we can keep people from getting the flu this fall and winter.
Whatever you resolve to do, I want you to commit to it. I want you to really work at it. 
I know that sometimes, you get the sense from TV that you can be rich and successful without any hard work — that your ticket to success is through rapping or basketball or being a reality TV star, when chances are, you’re not going to be any of those things. 
But the truth is, being successful is hard. You won’t love every subject you study. You won’t click with every teacher. Not every homework assignment will seem completely relevant to your life right this minute. And you won’t necessarily succeed at everything the first time you try.
That’s OK.  Some of the most successful people in the world are the ones who’ve had the most failures. JK Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was rejected twelve times before it was finally published. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, and he lost hundreds of games and missed thousands of shots during his career. But he once said, “I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” 
These people succeeded because they understand that you can’t let your failures define you – you have to let them teach you. You have to let them show you what to do differently next time. If you get in trouble, that doesn’t mean you’re a troublemaker, it means you need to try harder to behave. If you get a bad grade, that doesn’t mean you’re stupid, it just means you need to spend more time studying. 
No one’s born being good at things, you become good at things through hard work. You’re not a varsity athlete the first time you play a new sport. You don’t hit every note the first time you sing a song. You’ve got to practice. It’s the same with your schoolwork. You might have to do a math problem a few times before you get it right, or read something a few times before you understand it, or do a few drafts of a paper before it’s good enough to hand in. 
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don’t know something, and to learn something new. So find an adult you trust – a parent, grandparent or teacher; a coach or counselor – and ask them to help you stay on track to meet your goals. 
And even when you’re struggling, even when you’re discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you – don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.
The story of America isn’t about people who quit when things got tough. It’s about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best. 
It’s the story of students who sat where you sit 250 years ago, and went on to wage a revolution and found this nation. Students who sat where you sit 75 years ago who overcame a Depression and won a world war; who fought for civil rights and put a man on the moon. Students who sat where you sit 20 years ago who founded Google, Twitter and Facebook and changed the way we communicate with each other.
So today, I want to ask you, what’s your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?  
Your families, your teachers, and I are doing everything we can to make sure you have the education you need to answer these questions. I’m working hard to fix up your classrooms and get you the books, equipment and computers you need to learn. But you’ve got to do your part too. So I expect you to get serious this year. I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don’t let us down – don’t let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it.
Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

Notice, the bolded words follow pretty much the same message delivered by a great president nearly 50 years ago, a message that has been held in high regard and seen as one of the greatest remarks made – oft-quoted by Democrats and Republicans alike.  Fifty years ago, the urging by President Kennedy was seen as something good and right – what can you do as a citizen of this great Nation to help her.

Now, 50 years later, the same message is being labeled as socialistic in nature – a march toward dictatorship – a flirting with communism – all because it is asking the youth of this Nation to think about their future and what they can do to help our country.

Because President Barack Obama has the audacity to ask the same question of millions of students in thousands of classrooms across one great Nation, he is drawing the wrath of many Republicans in all corners of this Nation. 

He is asking that students take ownership of their education – something that many have been preaching for decades.  He is asking that the responsibilities of citizenship of this Nation not wait until the ballot lever is pulled.  He is asking that our youth recognize how much it takes to build and improve our great Nation and take ownership of contributing to its success and good fortune.

Imagine that – the audacity of hope in our young people   – – the audacity to think that students should and will be encouraged to understand the importance of education  —  the audacity to ask that students think about their education and how they, too, can ask  “Not what my country can do for me, but what can I do for my country.” 

Imagine that.

President Barack Obama will deliver a message of encouragement to students across the Nation on September 8, 21009

President Barack Obama will deliver a message of encouragement to students across the Nation on September 8, 2009 (Photo Credit:


About Charlotte A. Weybright

I own a home in the historical West Central Neighborhood of Fort Wayne, Indiana. I have four grown sons and nine grandchildren - four grandsons and five granddaughters. I love to work on my home, and I enjoy crafts of all types. But, most of all, I enjoy being involved in political and community issues.
This entry was posted in Barack Obama, Democrats, Education, U.S. Presidency, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Bob says:

    Who in this country can possibly find fault in that speech! I do remember Kennedy giving his speech, and it is certainly similar in nature. Thank you for posting the speech.

  2. Lewis Allen says:

    Just wait…. someone will claim that these remarks were altered from the original after all the uproar, and there will be fake ‘real speeches’ popping up everywhere. The rabid among the right are a predictable bunch.

  3. john b. kalb says:

    Lewis Allen: You said it and you probably got it correct – his speech-writers probably worked all last night revising! I also believe what resulted may encourage a few at my old high school, North Side, to finish and graduate – less that 50% is not going to cut it in this economic climate!

  4. Iceironman says:

    First off it was the education system asking captive students to ask themselves how could they help the president that was a little offensive.

    Now for the speach, it is awsome!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is awsome because it is almost 100% base on conservative principles.

    “He is asking that students take ownership of their education”(kinda like im telling others to take ownership of their healthcare).

    “But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.”

    Yet if they dont, dont worry, the govt will care for you.

    “But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for neglecting your homework or having a bad attitude. That’s no excuse for talking back to your teacher, or cutting class, or dropping out of school. That’s no excuse for not trying”

    Yet he give excuses for equality based on race everyday. He says it isnt an excuse then tells folks you have to be an activist because the man is against you.

    Again, great speach, I just wish the libs like charlotte and obama actually believed everyone has a chance. I mean, he just said it right???

    • Lewis Allen says:

      Iceironman, I’ve got some bad news for you. Conservatives have no monopoly on the concepts of hard work and personal responsibility, any more than liberals have a monopoly on those of justice and compassion. Plenty a liberal has pulled him or herself up by the bootstraps, as have, I’m sure, many conservatives.

      And as to your claim that Obama gives ‘excuses for equality based on race everyday’, well, that’s just not true. Every day? Really?? I’m liberal and do believe everyone has a chance. Even wrong-headed conservatives.

  5. Judith says:

    President Obama started giving these goals for students, parents and teachers long before he was elected to be our president. What a stretch to even think this speech was revised due to Conservatives’ pressure!
    Since we all agree that the goals set for students in this speech are what is needed now in our country, let’s all work together to promote hard work, setting goals, learning how to be productive, responsible citizens of the U.S.A.! If “the village” works together to help children achieve these goals, our country will truly benefit!
    One father complained on TV tonight that his children know that educatin is important, and that they work hard in school without the president telling them to do that. But, if this is true, his children are fortunate. But his children will live in the same period of time as those who do not have that accountablilty. If he expects America will continue to be successful in the global scheme, he should welcome the encouragement for all students to achieve.

  6. Iceironman says:

    SO lewy allen, conservatives dont hold a monopoly on hard work. We just dont get into high positions and look back and tell others they cant do without the govts help. I would be an idiot to say no liberal has worked hard, I would also be an idiot to say a liberal has actualy helped in govt. Only individuals can help themselves, not govt lewy.

    Just a side thought. I remember when I was a dem, back in college. When the world was right and it was me against an invisible man or machine that controlled the “system”. Hillary wrote a book called something about a village. I thought, man, this gal is right on. We used to have neighborhood where a parent could count on others to tell them what their child was up to. What happened to the good old days? Where everyone helped one another?

    Then I grew up Lewy and all other libs. It doesnt take a village, it takes a man and a woman with commitment to raise a child and to one another. It doesnt take govt, schools, babysitters, politicians, doctors, lawyers, courts, juvy, etc. You see you libs have a great out look on life, it takes a village. NO, IT TAKES TWO PARENTS. Once the “village” steps in its too late.

    Keep thinking on the dream of the libs as it takes a village…… Doesnt sound bad to brain dead college folk but in the real world,,,, it isnt true. Why didnt she name her book, it takes a Government. Would have made more sence

    • Lewis Allen says:

      Individual responsibility versus shared responsibility.. Why does it have to be all one or the other? I think you present a false dichotomy. In an ideal world, yes, government would not need to do anything but build roads and provide for our defense. I don’t think many people would disagree, for example, that a child’s well-being is the responsibility of the child’s parents. But if that child is born to two lousy, irresponsible parents, then what should be done? Just tell the kid, “Screw you, you’re not the government’s problem”, apparently, in the conservative worldview.

      Funny how those who reject Darwin on religious grounds are so quick to embrace social Darwinism.

      And to claim that government has never helped anyone is crazy. Even some of the pissed-off protesters railing against government at the town hall meetings don’t want their medicare touched. I’ve known a lot of older, poorer people who’s lives were literally saved by this government program. The truth is that some problems are so large in scale and scope – natural disaster, medical pandemics, security and criminal issues – that only the federal government can help. The key is that it must be run by competent people. Like the saying goes, conservatives claim that government is incompetent, then get themselves elected and prove that it’s true.

  7. Ice:

    Oh come on, you’re grasping here. Obama has a great speech, and it is similar to Kennedy’s speech in 1961. Does age really matter? Are you saying that because these are kids under 18 that it is wrong to encourage them to succeed and to think about how they can contribute to this country? Get a grip.

    What a weak argument. And, you are wrong about government helping. That is what many of the amendments are all about. The 14th amendment prevents states from violating due process of law, the equality of the law, and the privileges and immunities guaranteed to citizens of the United States.

    What a novel concept – government making sure that the white, male establishment didn’t continue to lynch and exclude blacks from the system. Government making sure that women weren’t excluded and eventually got the vote. Wow, how awful that government would actually take it upon itself to ensure that all citizens have access to the rights that the Founding Fathers so artfully and originally kept for themselves and their brethren.

  8. Iceironman says:

    Again, great speach, he sounds like a conservative. I didnt hear him talk about stumbling and the govt coming to help. I didnt hear him talk about not working hard because healthcare will be free. I didnt hear anything about those who will be successful getting taxed over 50%, because thats the reality. I didnt hear him talk about a young man going to college, getting a phd, working 80 every week to climb the corporate ladder, only to be called a scumbag and have the govt control his wages. Maybe even his life threatend by left wingers and union thugs that show up on his lawn after the govt releases his name and address. Remember children, be successfull, but not too successful.

    From Michelle Os Zanesville oh speech…..

    “We left corporate America, which is a lot of what we’re asking young people to do,” she tells the women. “Don’t go into corporate America. You know, become teachers. Work for the community. Be social workers. Be a nurse. Those are the careers that we need, and we’re encouraging our young people to do that. But if you make that choice, as we did, to move out of the money-making industry into the helping industry, then your salaries respond.” Faced with that reality, she adds, “many of our bright stars are going into corporate law or hedge-fund management.”

    She left this part out…….

    What she doesn’t mention is that the helping industry has treated her pretty well. In 2006, the Chicago Tribune reported that Mrs. Obama’s compensation at the University of Chicago Hospital, where she is a vice president for community affairs, jumped from $121,910 in 2004, just before her husband was elected to the Senate, to $316,962 in 2005, just after he took office. And that does not count the money Mrs. Obama receives from serving on corporate boards. She would have been O.K. even without Jack’s magic beans.

    Oh yes, and those pissed off protesters that dont want there medicade touched. What a concept, I pay into a system and expect it to be there for me? DUH???

  9. Judith says:

    Indoctrinate–it’s being labeled a bad concept. Actually, if we don’t indoctrinate our children, we are not doing our duty. Another word for “indoctrinate” is “instruct.” Parents must begin instruction to their infants. Otherwise the toddler will not know how to be with others without hitting or demanding all of the attention. Parents should be responsible for passing on their value system to their children.

    Schools have a major part to play. The children must learn basic skills to use for understanding their world and navigating through life. Hopefully the core values have been shaped in the home.

    Parents, teachers and communities must indoctrinate children to appreciate the country in which they live. Our most precious resource is our youth. If they do not realize that being an American gives them great opportunities, and necessitates taking responsibilities, our future as a country is in jeopardy.

    Somehow we have lost the idea that every citizen must participate in a democracy. Every citizen must work hard, set goals and think about what he/she can do for America.

    Perhaps President Obama shouldn’t have asked for letters to him–taken as a push for him as a person by Conservatives. However, doesn’t it show an interest by the president in every child setting goals? While there are many worthwhile pursuits, as president of America Obama is leading children to be good citizens. He points out that the future of our country depends on achievements of youth as they prepare for leadership–in research, in business, in sharing our values, in healing, in labor, and in all aspects of the American life.

    President George H.W. Bush asked for letters from children of how to achieve national goals. President Reagan asked for help to spread the American philosophy. President Obama asked for letters of committment to goals set by children for their lives. Now he asks these letters to be addressed to themselves and/or to a concerned adult. We should follow through with the children we know to help them with this monumental task.

  10. Iceironman says:

    Judith, nice writtings. I agree with you but I dont know how a president who rails on successful ceos and businesses can then in turn tell the children they should be a part of the success.

    “Somehow we have lost the idea that every citizen must participate in a democracy. Every citizen must work hard, set goals and think about what he/she can do for America.”

    Yes, alot of us had went inactive, then we are awakened by things we dont agree with like massive spending and govt healthcare and we are compared to Tim McCvey. We are called terrorist, fake, and other names.

    • Lewis Allen says:

      Ice, it’s nice that you can at least muster up some compassion for the least of our brothers. Who know that these were CEOs? Your heart bleeds for these poor fellows, doesn’t it? Let me ask you: Which one least deserves to be called ‘scumbag’? : Kenneth ‘Kenny Boy’ Lay, of Enron, who while he was screwing many out of their retirements was making sure that GW’s campaign was well funded. His pal, Jeff Skilling. Or is it Dennis Kozlowski, Bernard Madoff, Conrad Black, Barry Minkow, John Rigas, Joe Nacchio, Sam Waksal, Bernie Ebbars, Greg Reyes, …. All of them adored by the conservative media, all of them considered by many to be successful, and hard-working. All of them deserving of much more than ‘scumbag’.

      • Iceironman says:

        They were all adorned by the conservative media???? Can you prove this, a phrase, quote or somthing. If the ceos are criminals, they will pay the price. What about the elected officials that go in average joes and come out multimillionaires.

        Evan Bayh didnt send Ken Lays money back

        LAY, KENNETH L
        HOUSTON, TX 77019
        EN RON Evan Bayh (D)
        Senate – IN
        EVAN BAYH COMMITTEE $1,000
        general 10/29/98

  11. Iceironman says:

    I cant believe this blog hasnt faced down healthcare???????????????????????????????????
    I would like to talk about how there are 1300 insurance companies in the US yet if you live in Cali, you only have access to six or so. Why?????????? GOVT rules. Why isnt insurance affordable, can you say govt mandates????????? Lets talk about the freedom to not have insurance that will be lost through taxation. Lets talk about it. Lets talk tax breaks for business that offers health insurance. Lets talk about tort reform.

    So lets put on our big brains and ask what healthcare reform is really about. 1300 insurance companies, will 1301 be more competitive and “fair”, not when the govt doesnt have to play by normal market constraints and has no one to answer to.

  12. Andy says:

    @Iceironman –

    Here’s the stats on the number of children whose parent’s refused to send them to school on account of President Obama education pep-talk speech:

    9 Students in FWCS were absent

    Out of a total of 32,000 children (43 FW schools reporting) only 9 (NINE) children were kept from attending school.

    That’s not even 1% of the total student population.

    This is a perfect example of an overblown, exaggerated story which was constantly pumped up by individuals who want nothing more than Barack Obama to fail. If everyone were to listen and tune into FOX news, you would think there would have been a tsunami of children all over this country absent from school the day of Barack’s speech.

    But…. the actual statistics prove otherwise.

    So, I think it is fair to say, this story of Barack’s secret agenda to brain-wash our children and turn them all into Communists is nothing more than political hype, with absolutely no credibility to back it up.

  13. Iceironman says:

    I think this shows that we approved of the speach because it was a conservative speach. If he would have talked about polar bears dying because of carbon (Gore did this to students and told them the 12 year olds know more than their parents) or if he would have made it politcal, my kids would have been home. Arguing with you is like arguing with a 6 year old. It wasnt really the speach to begin with, it was the follow up on how my child could help the president. I dont really want them to help him and his communist agenda. I will say it, I hope the president fails, I dont want govt healthcare, I dont want to punish success, I dont want a manchild in the whitehouse that feeds class warfare.

    Im still waiting on the investigation like with George 41 got.

    Ps speaking of communism, did you notice the Van Jones commy retired??? Did you notice he supported a communist cop killer. Did you notice he said white folks were purposly poisoning black folk?

    Next up on the list is Cass Sunstein, a great guy who believes hunting should be banned, animals could sue there owners, and check out his view on Free Speech

    Consider the “fairness doctrine,” now largely abandoned but once requiring radio and
    television broadcasters:
    …[I]n light of astonishing economic and technological changes, we must doubt whether,
    as interpreted, the constitutional guarantee of free speech is adequately serving
    democratic goals. It is past time for a large-scale reassessment of the appropriate role of
    the First Amendment in the democratic process.
    –Cass R. Sunstein, Democracy and the Problem of Free Speech, The Free Press,
    1995, p. xi
    A system of limitless individual choices, with respect to communications, is not
    necessarily in the interest of citizenship and self-government.
    –Cass Sunstein, arguing for a Fairness Doctrine for the Internet in his book, 2.0 (Princeton University Press, 2007), p.137

    Also on the lines of communism/big gov check out what Obama wants to tax now. Kinda like how in the early 90s taxing tobacco would solve all healthcare problems. How the hell can libs trust big govt.

    From Obama (which would make him a lier again about raising taxes)

    In an interview with Men’s Health magazine, Obama called a tax on soda “an idea that we should be exploring.”
    “There’s no doubt that our kids drink way too much soda. And every study that’s been done about obesity shows that there is as high a correlation between increased soda consumption and obesity as just about anything else,” he said. “Obviously it’s not the only factor, but it is a major factor.”

    Once again big brother telling me what I can eat and drink or do, no thats right they are hippacrites, they dont ban it, they tax it and spend it.

  14. Ice:

    You want to control topics – start your own blog. I will write about health care when I am darned good and ready to write about it.

    I have to wonder where on earth you get the idea that Obama’s speech was conservative. Your right-wing buddies failed to accomplish what they wanted, and now they (and you) are trying to save face by calling the speech “conservative.” What a crock!

    Education cuts are being made primarily by the conservatives, (Daniels is one of them) not by the liberals. To now try to co-opt Obama’s speech as conservative is absolutely laughable.

  15. Iceironman says:

    I can control the blog. You never typed the word Van Jones to my recolect. You didnt address the Cass Sunstein issues.

    So you consider liberal progressive point of view as pull yourself up by your bootstraps. You consider his speach perfect because he held the students responsible?

    You and andy and all the others want to run from the facts. Doesnt it send a chill down your spine when you hear a person say

    “A system of limitless individual choices, with respect to communications, is not
    necessarily in the interest of citizenship and self-government.
    –Cass Sunstein, arguing for a Fairness Doctrine for the Internet in his book, 2.0 (Princeton University Press, 2007), p.137

    You cant address this because it will put your unwaivering support of Obama to a test. You have failed to address your rights. Your blind commentment to obama have turned that bumper sticker on your truck to a piece of tape. Are you done with your rights??? No. You are willing to give them up under the name of obama.

    Fines for not having insurance??? Im sure that has no right infringment. You want talk radio shut down like Lloyd the diversity chair at the fcc wants (because he likes what Chavez has done). Do you think hunting should be banned like Sunstein has said. Do you think what Sunstein said in the above quote is rediculous, or do you think Chavez had it right when he took over the media??

    Lets see, the biggest event in recent American history, a president coming before congress, and you dont think it warrents disscussion. A communist just left the whitehouse, you dont want to discuss. A man named Cass Sunstein will soon take the spotlight, and you wont talk about him. You seem like a person who is perfectly willing to give up your rights.

  16. Iceironman says:

    Oh here is one by your man Sunstein

    Sunstein scolds readers like small-minded, selfish children for opposing the size, scope,
    expansion and skyrocketing expense of government:
    “In what sense in the money in our pockets and bank accounts fully ‘ours’? Did we earn
    it by our own autonomous efforts? Could we have inherited it without the assistance of
    probate courts? Do we save it without the support of bank regulators? Could we spend it
    if there were no public officials to coordinate the efforts and pool the resources of the
    community in which we live?… Without taxes there would be no liberty. Without taxes
    there would be no property. Without taxes, few of us would have any assets worth
    defending. [It is] a dim fiction that some people enjoy and exercise their rights without
    placing any burden whatsoever on the public fisc. … There is no liberty without
    dependency. That is why we should celebrate tax day …”
    — Cass R. Sunstein, “Why We Should Celebrate Paying Taxes,” The Chicago
    Tribune, April 14, 1999

    I love it!!!!!!!! How can you defend this

  17. Ice:

    Excuse me, but do you understand why the Founding Fathers set up the electoral college? They set it up to avoid popular vote. But that wasn’t the only proposal that showed their distrust of the average citizen. They originally provided that senators were to be elected by the state legislatures, and that wasn’t changed until 1913. They left voting privileges to the states (which, by the way, limited voting rights to property owners for decades).

    Let’s face it, whether you want to admit it or not, the Founding Fathers – as great as they were – practiced protectionism. They protected their own wealth and status, and they were distrustful of the average citizen – which, by the way, for decades excluded minorities and women.

    Don’t talk to me about equality because you aren’t in a position to even know what it is like to be told that you should leave law school and go home and stay in the kitchen. You have no clue what it is like to be challenged as a medic because you are a woman and some man doesn’t think you have the ability to drive an ambulance even though you had the very same training.

  18. Ice:

    Who cares what he said in 1999? I used to be anti-choice, and I probably said a number of things about those who had abortions that I no longer hold as beliefs. I have corrected my position to understand that women and their doctors have the right to decide between them what is right. Whether I would opt for an abortion is not the issue, and it isn’t for a bunch of male legislatures to decide either. The issue is between the doctor and the woman.

  19. Andy says:


    I have to reiterate what Charlotte said. After all, this is HER blog, not mine, not your’s nor anyone else’s.

    I’ve been visiting and commenting on this blog for a time, because quite a few of the topics Charlotte chooses to write about interest me.

    I think Charlotte has been absolutely stellar in her ability to keep things civil on this blog, and in my opinion, she has gone to great lengths to try to let everyone express different viewpoints on a variety of topics. Her patience is phenomenal.

    But….. as the banner of her blog states, she is offering a PROGRESSIVE, LIBERAL point of view.

    I’ve found Charlotte’s blog to be a little ray of sunshine in what I consider to be a very, staunch, uber-religious, ultra-conservative area.

    IF I wanted to tune into FOX news and listen to Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, or Hannity I would do it. But after witnessing the grand standing, fear-mongering, self-righteous, bullying behavior exhibited by some commentators at FOX and people like Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh, I choose to not fill my mind with such lowest common denomination, tabloid-style trash.

    After viewing a few episodes of Glenn Beck’s tirades, I think its safe to say he deserves to be in the same category as Howard Stern and Jerry Springer.

    After all, it was Beck who described himself as just “a rodeo clown”.

    Beck’s own words:

    “I’m a rodeo clown. If you take what I say as gospel, you’re an idiot.”

    So, which is it ? Is Glenn Beck a source of reliable news information, or is Beck just some circus entertainer (or snake oil salesman) making a buck at the expense of a bunch of white, middle-aged, men who are angry & frustrated that Barack Obama is our President ?

    Last thought: What I really find interesting in Beck’s statement above is he actually refers to his own viewers as IDIOTS.

  20. Iceironman says:

    Becks point on calling himself a clown is that he is merly a person. He doesnt claim to be an elitist like some other broadcasters with air time. And the reason he said your an idiot if you take what he says as gospel is simply this (which if you watch and listened you would know) HE WANTS HIS VIEWERS TO DO THIER OWN RESEARCH. That simple. Rodeo clown 1, Van Jones 0. Did you see his breaking news on ACORN,,

    I believe Charlotte said this was a good group??? I guess if you like supporting giving homes to prostitutes, harbouring 15 year old illegals for prostitution, suggesting not to pay taxes, Suggesting claiming said prostitutes as dependants. I could go on but you can watch for yourself

  21. Iceironman says:

    “A system of limitless individual choices, with respect to communications, is not
    necessarily in the interest of citizenship and self-government.
    –Cass Sunstein, arguing for a Fairness Doctrine for the Internet in his book, 2.0 (Princeton University Press, 2007), p.137

    2007 Charlotte, 0h but that was so two years ago???

  22. Andy says:


    Looks like your rodeo clown Glenn Beck is STILL CONTINUING to lose advertisers:

    Beck’s brand of paranoia and radical commentary are turning off more and more people and American businesses.

    When all the sane people have come to their senses and abandoned Beck, I wonder who will be left watching Beck’s show, other than a small faction of extreme, right-wing militants who talk of bloody revolutions.

    Speaking of, here’s a clip taken from a town hall meeting in California put on by Congressman Wally Herger. In the clip, a man stands up before the crowd and states:

    “And I want to say I’m a proud right-wing terrorist”

    Notice after the man states this, the crowd applauds and Congressman Herger does NOTHING to rebuke the man’s extreme and offensive claim. Instead Congressman Herger is heard telling the man “Amen, God Bless You. There is a great American”

    The man claiming himself to be a “proud right-wing terrorist” is Bert Stead.

    Even after Congressman Herger received tons of phone calls, letters and emails from Americans who were outraged by Bert Stead’s radical and extreme statement, Congressman Herger had this to say:

    “he (Bert Stead) is a great American”

    “(He, Congressman Herger) doesn’t at all regret commending him (Bert Stead) for standing up, exercising his free speech rights, and expressing his strong concerns with the direction liberals in Washington are taking our country.”

    After reading/watching this unacceptable statement by Bert Stead, and reading Congressman Herger’s praise for the man who said it, I’m left wondering to what length some of these “right-wing terrorists” will go???

    Will these freaks and cowards start targeting liberal or democratic congressman’s offices ? Will they target Federal Buildings like Timothy McVeigh did ? Will they storm into another museum in Washington DC and start shooting at innocent people based solely on the color of their skin ?? Will they attend a church which opens their doors to liberals and gays and murder people in the pews ??

  23. Andy says:


    Even more Glenn Beck controversy:

    The mayor of Mt Vernon, WA, plans to “honor” Beck and christen Sept. 26, 2009 as “Glenn Beck Day”.

    Shorty after the Mayor’s announcement, the mayor’s office received a flood of negative response back from Mt. Vernon residents who were angry about the mayor’s decision.

    The mayor, Bud Norris stated:

    “I don’t know if I expected the magnitude of resistance,”

    From CNN: “But Norris told CNN he has been surprised by the amount of criticism.”

    From the CNN story:

    “Georgiann Dustin, the executive director of the Mount Vernon Downtown Association, said she and other business leaders are not taking sides in the Beck dispute but hope the matter blows over soon.”

    “Some of us are receiving 50 calls a day from people saying they will boycott our businesses [because of the Beck visit],” Dustin said. “They are hitting us in the pocketbook.”

  24. Iceironman says:

    Lets see a liberal hotbed, denouncing the success of one of its own because of their beliefs. So much for TOLERANCE. No one is forcing them to attend the ceromonie. Shows the far left makes the kkk look very tolerant.

  25. Ice:

    He was referring to the internet. As far as I am concerned, the internet needs regulated. The internet is virtually control-free as far as spouting all manner of insults, lies, and hateful propaganda.

    The only time I have seen any kind of control was when a local blogger made a statement to the effect about child molesters that people should “grab guns and kill them.” The blog host shut the blogger down, as well they should have.

  26. Iceironman says:

    I guess books are unregulated. I think China and Chavez regulate their internet??? I knew you would think we should be like them. All ISPs have control to regulate if something is way out of line.
    Should the radio be regulated more? I mean, anything on the internet could be said on radio. And for that fact TV, or even down on the courthouse lawn. Look into Lloyd your fcc diversity czar and how much he is in love with Chavez the murderous dictator and how he controled his media in his delightful “democratic” revolution.

  27. Iceironman says:

    Andy says

    “Beck’s brand of paranoia and radical commentary are turning off more and more people and American businesses. ”

    Reality and truth is

    Big Beck: Goes over 3 million viewers, beats O’Reilly in demo: Cable News Ratings for Wednesday, August 26, 2009
    Posted on 27 August 2009 by Robert Seidman

    update: Beck again led all shows (including The O’Reilly Factor) in the adults 25-54 demographic on Thursday night.

    Though a little scandal might alienate advertisers, it’s pure ratings gold. Last night Glenn Beck had over 3 million viewers at 5pm, second only to O’Reilly for the night. But, Beck had more 25-54 viewers than O’Reilly (888K to 876K). I don’t watch or really even care about the cable news wars, but still…wow. Even though Beck airs before primetime, when there are fewer people watching TV, he had the most 25-54 viewers in the cable news world for the night.

    This is from tvby the

    Now, beck has already said he will go off the air with the truth, and he doesnt care. To show that, he has not turned down the truth to be a “good boy”.

    And I guess with the Speaker of the house calling me a nazi, a mob, radicles, you claiming we are all terrorist, do you think there was a little sarcasm?

    Did you know that the cnn report on how this deals with race and showing a man at rally with a machine gun (zoomed in real tight). The man was actually black, but dont let the figures or facts get in the way, cnn certainly didnt. Andy, you have to have some credibility in this world. A 1 minute search on google told me you were lying about becks viewership. Credibility Andy, Credibility.

  28. Andy says:


    I couldn’t agree more with your statement:

    “Credibility Andy, Credibility.”

    Glenn Beck = Rodeo Clown His own words, not mine.

    Its hard to take a rodeo clown serious. Especially, when the rodeo clown (Glenn Beck) thinks NBC’s Rockefeller Plaza in NYC is a Communist Shrine. But if someone (FOX viewer) is looking for any sliver of meat to satisfy his or her hatred for Barack Obama, well then Beck’s paranoia and propaganda certainly fit the bill.

    You attempt to validate Glenn Beck’s television program as a credible source of news based solely on TV ratings. Again, Jerry Springer and Monday Night Nitro (Smackdown!) get quite a few people to tune in, but ratings alone certainly doesn’t make these shows any more a source of credible information. I guess if I wanted to see people yelling and acting belligerent, I might want to watch Jerry Springer’s side show.

    Yes, Glenn Beck has dialed in to the right-wing lunatic fringe with his drumbeat of fascism and communism. I guess these individuals have to find some person in TV land to jack themselves up and agree with their xenophobic crusade. There’s plenty of white supremacists (the South will rise again ! folks) and self-labeled “right-wing terrorists” tuning into Beck for their marching orders. To be honest, I have to wonder what the average I.Q. is for Beck’s listeners.

    But as you say Iceironman, “it’s pure ratings gold”.

    Hmmm.. I wonder where a guy like Bert Stead (proud right-wing terrorist) gets his “news” from ???

    • iceironman says:

      Andy, all I care for are the facts. Instead of refuting Glenn Beck you attack him. Its ok. That is all you can do. Dont you think if MSNBC could prove everything he says is a lie, they would.
      Then you attacking me and conservatives by calling us terrorists, white supremesists etc. How many fights at the march on Washington, how many arrests?

      Please Whatch Glenn, then tell me all the lies, prove him wrong, and I will agree with you.

      All Glenn is doing is pointing out facts, Van Jones=communist member of the black radicles who signed 911 truthers saying Bush allowed 911 to happen on purpose. He stated that Van Jones is a radicle with connections to Soros and the Apollo project. Guess where Van Jones works now??????

  29. iceironman says:

    Ok, this is what will bring us together. Jon Stewart is funny on this one

    And he is being truthfull!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  30. Andy says:

    @ Iceironman –

    You say you want facts. Here goes a few little Glenn Beck nuggets:

    Glenn Beck states he hates 9/11 victims’ families. Nope its true. Check out the video:

    Glenn Beck’s own statement:

    ” you know it took me about a year to start hating the 9-11 victims’ families? Took me about a year.”

    ” And when I see a 9-11 victim family on television, or whatever, I’m just like, “Oh shut up!” I’m so sick of them because they’re always complaining.”

    And what does Beck think of the Hurricane Katrina survivors ?

    “But the second thought I had when I saw these people (Hurricane Katrina survivors) and they had to shut down the Astrodome and lock it down, I thought: I didn’t think I could hate victims faster than the 9-11 victims.”

    I bet if Beck lost a family member or a friend in the 9/11 attacks or Hurricane Katrina, he would not have made such a careless, ignorant statement.

    But should we not expect such belligerent, outlandish statements from Beck by now ?

    You see Iceironman, its too EASY for Glenn Beck to sit back, criticize, and conjure up ridiculous claims (Rockefeller Plaza is a communist shrine, FEMA is constructing concentration camps, Barack Obama has a deep seeded hatred for white people, etc…)

    All to just stir the pot and possibly temp some white supremacist redneck into doing something stupid.

    And Iceironman, I noticed you said nothing to refute Bert Stead’s claim:

    “I’m a proud right-wing terrorist.”

  31. iceironman says:

    Dont know Bert Stead. Im sure there are alot of Right wing terrorists out there. Glenn beck is not one and has never talked of violence and in fact knows every conservative movement would be struck down because of it. Dont act like Obamas friend Bill Aryes isnt a lefty communist terrorist, the triple threat, and who has acted violently?? Was it the 1.5 million in Washington, nope. Pretty peaceful as I have not had the MSM tell me otherwise.

    Now to Glenn Beck hating 911 victims families, Context matters Andy. Some of the 911 victims families acted in total disrespect to the nation, and took political sides, opening themselves up to critisism, that they deserved. He never called the victims scum or he hated them, he hates the relitives who get on tv and want money and their moment of fame, a result is the deminishing of the victims dignity.

    Next, the Katrina “victims”. He was saying that in responses to reports of gun fire on a US rescue helicopter. Is it wrong to call those “victims” scumabags, no, not in my book. It was the guys walking through the streets with tvs. It was the claims of GW blowing up dikes etc.

    By the way Andy, I probably fit the new definition of right wing terrorist.

    Andy did you see what Beck did to Van Jones? Did you see what he did to ACORN? Lost all of their funding for now.

    You still didnt say where Beck lied?? Andy?? Im waiting. You chose not to like him, fine, you dont like that he thinks people shooting at rescue helicopters are scumbags. He doesnt like media whores shaming their relitives memories and a tragic military day for this country. So what. I dont like Oberman, but if he is spewing undeniable truths and asking questions about govt that show say Sara Palin as a money grubbing communist that is funding illegal crime, the last thing Im going to do is ask you about the time Oberman said something contriversial or that I dont agree with. I would get on your side and kick her A&^ out.

    But not a bad conversation, it is giving me practice for dealing with younger less thoughtfull perspectives on life and govt.

  32. Andy says:


    Your statement:

    “By the way Andy, I probably fit the new definition of right wing terrorist.”

    Pretty bold and careless statement to make. I hope you were saying it in jest.

    Because to the family members who lost mothers, fathers, and children to the Oklahoma City terrorist bombing by self-professed right wing terrorist Timothy McVeigh, its not something to joke about.

  33. Andy says:

    @Iceironman –

    As to Beck lying, where do I start.

    Aside from telling the LIE that “Barack Obama has a deep seeded hatred for white people”.

    And Glenn Beck’s self-infused hysteria that FEMA built Nazi-style concentration camps:

    Beck stated:

    “We are a country that is headed toward socialism, totalitarianism, beyond your wildest imagination.”

    “I have to tell you, I am doing a story tonight, that I wanted to debunk these FEMA camps. I’m tired of hearing about them — you know about them? I’m tired of hearing about them. I wanted to debunk them.”

    “We’ll we’ve now for several days been doing research on them — I can’t debunk them! And we’re going to carry the story tonight.”

    “…It is our government — if you trust our government, it’s fine. If you have any kind of fear that we might be headed toward a totalitarian state, there is something going on in our country that it’s — it ain’t good.”

    Here’s a fresh and “recent” LIE by Glenn Beck:

    Beck reported to his viewers the number of people attending the 9/12 demonstration this past week as being “hundreds of thousands strong, perhaps as many as a million”.

    In one interview, Beck claims 1.7 million people marched on Washington D.C.

    This is a LIE. Told, I assume, to hide the actual number of 60,000 – 70,000 protesters given by the Washington D.C. Fire Dept.

    “Pete Pringer, public affairs officer for the D.C. Fire and Emergency Department, said the local government no longer provides official crowd estimates because they can become politicized. But the day of the rally, Pringer unofficially told one reporter that he thought between 60,000 and 75,000 people had shown up.”

    “It was an impressive crowd,” he said. But after marching down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol, the crowd “only filled the Capitol grounds, maybe up to Third Street,” he said.

  34. Andy says:


    Want some more Glenn Beck lies ?

    Beck falsely claimed average UAW worker makes $154 per hour:

    Beck inflated estimated ANWR oil production by nearly 7000 percent:

    Believe me, there are plenty of other LIES of Glenn Beck’s out there. All you have to do is plug in “GLENN BECK LIES” on the internet and fire away…

    For you to hold Glenn Beck up on this pedastol that he is a Saint, a Patriot, a Truth Teller, is totally asinine bizarre to me. I equate it to me getting my daily “news” from the Howard Stern show.

    Thankfully, the majority of reasonable and rational people see through Glenn Beck’s lies and rodeo clown show.

    But if you are interested in paranoia and hysteria then by all means keep tuning into Beck.

  35. iceironman says:

    Andy, words matter. Did you see where I specificly said “the new definition”? Here is an example of why I would fit that bill of the NEW definition

    In Friday’s Washington Post business section, columnist Steven Pearlstein — who last week condemned the conservative “fantasy” that raising taxes is damaging to the economy — blasted Republicans as “political terrorists” who are “poisoning the political well” by peddling “lies” about liberal health care plans, lies that are “so misleading, so disingenuous, that they could only spring from a cynical effort to gain partisan political advantage.”

    “As a columnist who regularly dishes out sharp criticism, I try not to question the motives of people with whom I don’t agree,” Pearlstein claimed before warning: “Today, I’m going to step over that line.”

    Besides, calling yourself a terrorist doesnt make you one? Now if you will excuse me, I have to go make my swastika signs that pelosi claims I have. REMEMBER?? Would nazis be classified as terrorits, probably.

    By the way, your attention span must be as long as mine as you have not pointed out where beck lied or purposely mislead??

  36. iceironman says:

    Obama having a deep seated hatred for white people, I agree with. It is an opinion, not a lie Andy. Thought you would know the difference but I guess not. Typical white person, Cops acted stupidly, White mans greed vs a world in need etc.

    I hardley dought that Beck is lying when he says UAW workers make an effective rate of 154 per hour. Maybe he can explain where he gets it, but considering the average worker makes 55 dollars an hour with benefits, then it is completely reasonable that if you factor in retirement when they are not working it actualy cost GM or other UAW sponcors on average 154 to hire and retire an employee. And we must remember what a lie is, purposely not telling the truth or misleading?? Beck, in the video, you can clearly see him consult a staff person as to the figure.

    The number at the rally, a lie, really?? Beck sited an IU students work on how many folks were at the rally. Probably not the most scientific at 1.7 Million. However it is better than anyone in the MSM did. And Andy, if you think there were only 60-70 you have never been to a sporting event. Most football stadiums hold 80-100 thousand, and that crowd was easily 10 times bigger. Am I a lier, no, just using common scense. And at the end of the day context matters Andy. Beck sited the IU students work, then said, so now we know there were some where between 50000 and 2 million. He went on to say who cares, there where alot of people who care about Americas future.

    And for the anwr drilling, again, a lie has to be on purpose. I am sure he slipped and said 100 instead of 1. We know nobody ever says the wrong numbers. But then Beck corrects himself, but Mediamatters wont show you that will they??

    Beck hears things of interest like the Fema camps. He researches and tries to prove them false. This is what jurnalist used to do. They get a lead and track it down. Sometimes it is correct, sometimes not. You see the fema camps were an internet and social rumour, he got tired of hearing about them and wanted to debunk them. Popular Mechanics magizine also did this. Please read below so you dont look like a fool by listening to clips. This is exact text from his show.

    GLENN BECK, HOST: A little over a month ago, I had a call. It was like the billionth call from a woman who asked me about FEMA prison camps. And I said to my producer, “Can we just please debunk this or prove it to be accurate?”

    I kind of snapped on the lady because, honestly, I’m sick of seeing the e-mails about the FEMA camps. I got something from friends that was about Nancy Pelosi and it was completely bogus.

    Look, let’s just stick to the facts. There is enough truth out there that pisses people off. We don’t need all the lies.

    The basic idea is that FEMA setting up evil concentration camps to be used against U.S. citizens. Now, along with the 9/11 Truthers, this is one of the most pervasive conspiracy theories on the Internet because it comes with supposed video — there’s the video proof, right there. That video now has well over a million views on YouTube.

    • Video: Watch Beck’s interview

    So we set out to get the truth. And quite honestly, I don’t believe that there are FEMA concentration camps. I think that sounds kind of nuts. But if there are, I’ll show them to you. If there aren’t, I’ll show that to you.

    We set out to get the truth on it. And after our initial research, I came in and I said, “Wait a minute. Wait a minute. We can’t debunk this?” Well, no, I thought we had done enough research to get the video. I wanted to line up video side-by-side. Apparently, there hadn’t been any debunking done at all. And there was no video side by side.

    Well, predictably, the media started claiming that somehow or another I believed in these conspiracy theories even though I said on the air a million times I don’t and I’ve said that for years.

    Not to mention the entire time they were running their mouths, we were working with an independent group to debunk them or to prove them. I also said that on the air over and over and over again. But who listens to context?

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    • ‘Glenn Beck’ blog: Join the debate

    The one guy that can actually set the record straight here is James Meigs. He’s the editor-in-chief of that independent group I was talking about otherwise known as Popular Mechanics. They did an incredible job in the writing of the definitive debunking of the 9/11 conspiracy that everybody knows now is not true because of Popular Mechanics except for Rosie O’Donnell.

    James is here now to do the same with the FEMA camps.

    OK. Let’s just start the easy stuff here. There are — I just want to collapse this as quickly as possible. There are things that, yes, FEMA has a right to have camps and they can do things to help people. And if you wanted to go down the crazy road of — “but they could be turned into…” — they actually could be, but there is like a million other steps that have to happen.

    JAMES MEIGS, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, POPULAR MECHANICS: That’s correct. And what we did was we looked into these claims. You know, you can’t go and visit every one of the 600 sites that some of these conspiracy theorists claim.

    BECK: Sure.

    MEIGS: So we started looking at the ones that are most popular on the Internet.

    BECK: OK. And let’s show the video. First, show me the video that is on the Internet. This is one of the so-called concentration camps or this one is actually — go ahead and show it — I guess, a “death camp.”

    Do we have it? OK. We don’t have it yet. I can’t keep going, because this is kind of built around the video. That’s the reason why we waited. There it is…


    NARRATOR (voice-over): This small building is the only way into a particular fenced area. Inside this building we see more of the motion- activated detectors, electronic turnstiles —


    BECK: OK. There is no sound? How come I’m hearing the sound here, Frank. OK. This is something where they’re showing a so-called concentration camp. These are turnstiles. This is in a secure area, behind the fence. I don’t know how they got this video when it was behind the fence, but they went in and got this video.

    You recognized this or you searched for it, right? And what did you find?

    MEIGS: Well, it is not very hard to find, like many of these things. The truth is actually fairly evident. This is an Amtrak repair facility in Beach Grove, Indiana. The woman who made this video initially claimed that it’s some kind of American Auschwitz. And they have outfitted buildings with gas and they’ve got these strange turnstiles.

    In fact, it is a repair facility. We sent a crew there the other day and we got…


    BECK: Is this your video?

    MEIGS: Yes. So initially, they had some old buildings that were boarded up that have since been knocked down. But we also went inside the other buildings, and sure enough, what did we find? They were repairing trains in there.

    BECK: Well, trains, I believe — well, Auschwitz had trains. I’m just saying.

    MEIGS: But once you go down that road, if somebody wants to be convinced of that, they can’t really debunk that.

    BECK: Do we have the video with audio? Because if we don’t, I don’t really care. The video with the audio about the boarded-up buildings with the gas chambers.

    Do you have that?


    UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (voice-over): In yet another fenced area, we see a large warehouse building at the end with the electronic turnstiles in front of it.


    BECK: OK. That they were putting gas heaters of some sort in there.

    MEIGS: Right. And what we found out is — first of all, one of those buildings has been knocked down. The other ones were upgraded. Their heating system was obsolete. And more than 15 years ago, they upgraded them to gas heat so they could work on the trains.

    BECK: These videos — they’re not new. Everybody is saying, oh, this is an Obama thing. I thought this was a Bush thing because of Halliburton and everything else. But that’s not even true.

    MEIGS: No, this video actually dates from about 1995. But like so many of these conspiracy theories, it gets re-cut and re-edited and circulated around the Internet.

    So some people who are looking at it have no idea what the original source was.

    BECK: OK. So the turnstiles are there for — they were there. They’re not there anymore?

    MEIGS: Right. The turnstiles were just ordinary subway turnstiles, familiar to anybody who’s ridden subways in New York. And they were used to clock in and out their employees. Now, they’ve replaced them with small kiosks that have time clocks.

    BECK: Who is the woman voicing this?

    MEIGS: Her name is Linda Thompson. And back in the ’90s, she was one of the leaders of the so-called militia movement. And she made a number of videos…

    BECK: Wait. This is the militia movement that — what’s his name — Timothy McVeigh was involved with?

    MEIGS: That’s right.

    BECK: OK.

    MEIGS: And I am not necessarily tying her to that.

    BECK: Yes.

    MEIGS: And yet, at one point, even many of her fellow people in the militia movement started to move away from her a little bit when she recommended are that some of her followers should march on Washington and start executing senators.

    BECK: So she was too extreme for militia members?

    MEIGS: Apparently, yes.

    BECK: Apparently. OK.

    MEIGS: And yet, you’ll see a video made by someone like that embraced by people all over the political spectrum without really knowing what the source is or without checking out if it is remotely accurate.

    BECK: OK. One last question: I want to show you — take a look at this picture. Can you put this picture up, please? This is another one. And we’re going to have you back tomorrow and — just answer yes or no. Is this — this is what they claim. This is a concentration camp?

    MEIGS: Yes, it is.

    BECK: It is. Are there atrocities going on in that camp?

    MEIGS: There is every reason to believe there is.

    BECK: Is this a government-run concentration camp where atrocities — every reason to believe atrocities are going on?

    MEIGS: Yes.

    BECK: Now, tomorrow I will ask him the one question that the conspiracy people never want to ask. And I’ll ask it and we will show you. Wait until you see this, tomorrow.

    By the way, if you want to get all of the information and more on the FEMA camps, debunk information that we couldn’t get into the segment, help silence the annoying conspiracy freak in your life. There is enough out there. We don’t need to make stuff up.

    With Glenn being the most popular target of the left and this is all you can come up with, Glenn mis speaking and correcting it?? Wow you are good.

  37. Andy says:


    Typical juke-n-jive on Glenn Beck. Always an excuse as to why he (Beck) did or didn’t say the right thing, was misquoted, misspoke, lied, etc. …

    There’s always some excuse. If you say you hate 9/11 vicitim’s families, and then try to back peddle, people tend to question one’s credibility.

    Here’s Glenn Beck on the View, again distorting facts and making ridiculous claims on his radio program, BUT when confronted IN PERSON, Beck backs down and apologizes to Barbara Walters:

    Glenn Beck puts his foot in his mouth so many time, its amazing his followers continue to take him seriously.

    But, if you aren’t concerned about FACTS and just want to listen to some blow hard who stokes your fears, riles you up and talks non-stop about communists, socialists, dictators, NAZIs, facists, and whatever boogie man is left out there, then……

    Glenn Beck is your Boy !

  38. Phil Marx says:

    What a terrible speech!

    First of all, he encourages kids to skip class – “I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well.”

    Then, he goes on to say “You might have to…read something a few times before you understand it…” This is obviously a partisan attack against Republicans like Souder who got confused reading the bill and thought Obama was going to kill grandma.

  39. Andy says:

    @Phil –

    “I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well.”

    I saw that too. Encouraging kids to wash their hands A LOT, and stay home from school when you don’t “feel well”, is just asking for trouble.

    I did some research and found even more juicy hints of facism/nazism/stalinism/communism/soicalism/marxism in Barack Obama’s speech:

    “When I was young, my family lived in Indonesia for a few years…”

    Hmmmm…Indonesia = Muslim country. Connect the dots here, this is PROOF Barack Obama is a Muslim.

    “Every single one of you has something you’re good at.”

    I find this statement troubling. Don’t know about other folks, but this is a blatant reference to COMMUNISM. You know, where each person is assigned a job for life, without no say on what occupation he or she is chosen to perform.

    “I got a lot of second chances and had the opportunity to go to college, and law school, and follow my dreams.”

    This is bonafied Socialism with a capital “S”. Don’t you get it ? Second chances ?? If Barack Obama believed in capitalism, he wouldn’t be talking about second chances. Also, second chances starts with the letter “s” and so does socialism. What more proof do I need to show ???

    “I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you.”

    More indoctrination !! This statement confirms Barack Obama is a Nazi ! I believe, don’t quote me on this, that Adolf Hitler said basically the same thing when he spoke to the German people during WWII.

    Kookie, Crazy stuff isn’t it ? Thank God Almighty a few true, patriotic, Americans stood up in the face of great evil and kept their children home from school the day this speech was given.

    These parents sure do recognise a socialist/communist/dictator/fascist/Nazi/muslim/kenyan born no U.S. birth certificate fellow who has a deep seeded hatred for white people when they see one.

  40. Phil Marx says:


    I was only joking – but now you’ve really got me worried! 🙂

  41. iceironman says:

    Andy, you didnt address the fact that you are wrong about the camps. Read the exact words. You dont warrent any responses from a man of my caliber. My time is worth more than a UAW worker, At least if I am misinformed I will admit it. If my conservative or repub gets into trouble I will throw them under the bus. You keep going. Did you read the post where Glenn says the media will say xxxxxxx and he wants to disprove the camps… Did you read it.

    Everything is sarcasim with you, to me, it is not. You are who you hang around. Simple.

  42. Andy says:


    Pretty bold statement to make:

    “You don’t warrent any responses from a man of my caliber.”

    I’ve had some inclination, for quite some time, you have an extremely high opinion of yourself, but your arrogant statement just confirms it all the more.

    What you’re failing to recognize is Glenn Beck DID make a careless, inflammatory statement by stating he could not “debunk” the FEMA Nazi concentration camps. Not sure if you connect the dots here, but it gives folks (his listeners) the impression he is VALIDATING these FEMA camps rumors. It does little for Beck to refute this, AFTER he already stirred the pot for all the conspiracy folks out there. The damage was already done. The FEMA concentration camps rumor gained even MORE traction after Beck made this careless statement.

    But this is what Beck’s calling card is: he latches onto hear say, or some rumor, from some “reliable” source, sometimes the source is himself, ( in the case of the 1.7 million tea party marchers claim, some university, but he can’t remember which one), and then spews the (mis)information out there for his deranged viewers to gobble up.

    I hate to be the one to rain on your Glenn Beck parade, but his show, his antics, are right on par with that of such other credible news sources such as the National Inquirer and The Onion.

    I get the funny feeling, that if Glenn Beck worked a 9 to 5 job in some factory or office, he would be the guy who was ALWAYS spreading baseless rumors about people, with no other purpose than to just get a rise out of his coworkers.

  43. UncommonSense says:

    Kennedy and OBama are almost similar sides of the same socialist coin and this speech simply proves it. I’ve never really understood the love and adoration people had for Kennedy. He was a weak, philandering loser of a President who almost brought us to the brink of nuclear war. His inability to effectively commit forces to liberating Cuba allowed communism a doorstep into Latin America which has been fully exploited. On the domestic policy side, Kennedy’s revisioning of our nations immigrations laws are directly tied to our current problems today. In fact, next to Warrne Harding I would have to say Kennedy is the top contender for the Worst President Ever though Obama is catching up fast.

  44. Steve Balde says:

    Thank you, now if we can inspire the young

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