Tag Archives: Teddy Roosevelt

Barry O speaks —

Takeaways: like the smack at Palin/Palinites and the “death panel” BS, thought the ruckus over illegal immigrant coverage was ridiculous, good at being clear on the major points, and I think the public option might be getting ready to exit Stage Left. This idea of a public option “kick in” might be the compromise. Also CBS should have showed more Emanuel. And Charles Boustany (R), an inspiring speaker you are not….and when you opened your mouth, I thought you were going to start singing something from “The Barber of Seville.” So, I’m out.

7:03 — There’s that oratorical baritone….

7:02 — “Markets can crash….the vulnerable can be exploited.” Exhibit A: the last year in the life of America.

7:00 — Did he mention that TR was a Republican who wanted to reform American healthcare yet? I can’t remember. 

6:59 — This is a well-executed step back toward the moral side of this issue. ….no snark on this one.

6:57 — “The character of our country.” Perfect, Teddy. 

6:56 — Ted Kennedy. Here’s the thing — we knew this was going to come up, but all Obama had to do was say his name and I teared up. Me. I only cry during “Gladiator.”

6:55 — “We will call you out.” Buh BAM.

6:55 — Republicans: FIND A BETTER WAY TO PROTEST THAN HOLDING UP STAPLED PACKETS. AMERICANS WATCHING AT HOME CANNOT READ THEM. Elitists.

6:53 — I would have clapped there based solely on my love of Kathleen Sebelius. 

6:52 — There are so many sounds echoing around….I feel like the Republicans and Democrats are actually making sounds back and forth like they’re at a football game.

6:49 — Another fun part of presidential addresses to Congress: watching moderates try to decide if they’re going to give a standing ovation to something and half get out of their chair and then sit back down. 

6:48 — “I want to speak directly to seniors for a minute.” CUT TO JOE LIEBERMAN hahahahaha. Also: everyone adjust the volume on your TV set by -10. I swear it just got louder.

6:46 — I like when politicians pull a “Yeah, man, bureaucrats blow!” kind of thing. It’s especially funny in the context of the President addressing Congress. 

6:43 — Yes, thank you for reminding us that most Americans aren’t screeching maniacs running hysterical in the streets and that many are on your side about the public option (yes, drink again). 

6:41 — Public option! Drink!

6:39 — Aaaand a return to Econ 101. Good move. Make it about monopolies! And choice! Americans love choice! Except…oh, well, not a minute ago.

6:38 — Serious commotion over the lack of coverage for illegal immigrants, and a mixed response over no funding for abortions…which: come on, we all knew that. 

6:36 — Um…giggles? Shut up GOP. This is just making you look like you don’t want to be a serious part of this debate. …Oh, wait.

6:34 — Creepy smile, McCain! But good idea?

6:33 — You can tell Pelosi and Biden are both Catholics because they have this whole sit-stand-sit-stand thing DOWN.

6:31 — No one should go broke because they get sick: perhaps my favorite summary of the reasons reform is necessary. Simple, to the point, emphasizes how helpless you can be. 

6:30 — Okay, the thing about making sure you can’t be denied coverage or be dropped for being sick — kind of a gimme. What righty is going to be photographed crossing his/her arms and shaking his/her head in a firm “NO!”…?

6:28 — Perfect application of “bickering” matched up with deepening his register and getting inspiring.

6:26 — The first shot of RAHM. Mmm.

6:24 — Early framing of the healthcare system as economically unsustainable immediately after storytime. I like the approach. 

6:23 — “And no one should be treated that way in the United States of America.” The Irish in me twitched. I love this patriotic application of guilt. LOVE.

6:20 — awww, Dingell gets a standing ovation too.

6:18 — I swear, Nancy Pelosi still has traces of a Baltimore accent. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking, since I can’t seem to strike “am-bee-lance.”

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And by “70 all the way to Omaha,” I mean…

…that we drove through scenic downtown Zionsville, Indiana for about ten minutes before we remembered we were heading in the general direction of 74, and not 70. And so we turned around and appreciated the (lovely, picturesque!) downtown all over again.

I should say here again — Former Roommate’s house was lovely, and her stepfather was a terrific host. He got up at 6 AM with us and made superb coffee before we went on our way. It was by his instruction that we checked out the Zville downtown (we told him we were heading back to 70…oops) — definitely a nice way to start the morning, if we had to improvise a route briefly thereafter. After this minor mishap, it was pretty straightforward: drive straight across Indiana (which was peppered with series of signs for a website against gun control…or maybe just pro gun in general? In any case, my favorite set, spaced out over about 70 feet, was “THAT RABBIT FOOT”….”WON’T SAVE YOU”…”GUNS SAVE LIVES”). And then we drove through Illinois. And then Iowa. And then some more Iowa. And after STILL more Iowa, we rolled across the Missouri River into Omaha, Nebraska, where we are currently stationed for tonight.

Oh, did I forget to mention that we drove across the Mississippi? That’s a big deal, right? …Not if you’re driving Rt. 80 from Illinois into Iowa. I was starting to burn out on driving and about to turn over the wheel, but wanted to wait until I had done The Momentous Thing and Driven Over The Great River for the First Time. And then there wasn’t even a sign…you would think it was the Pocomoke. Actually the Pocomoke has a sign. Delmarva is proud.

Anyway, today was long and flat, and though we did have a short stop in Covington, IN (“On The Banks Of The Wabash!”) and drove by DeSoto, IA (the birthplace of John Wayne), it was pretty much a straight shot, with some nice rolling country (corn, soy, wind turbines) in Iowa. But still,  a very different part of the USA, and a view of places I hadn’t really seen before — with the exception of Ames, IA, all of today’s destinations were new.  Eventually, a monotony did sort of set in after we had covered every possible topic relevant to US foreign policy (mostly Mexico, China, and our relationship to western Europe, with a little bit of the Middle East thrown in) during the Indiana hours. 

I started to get drowsy and babbly sometime after Peoria, and by Iowa City I was telling my mom about the bizarre dream I had last night in which I was dating a video blogger and we danced around his apartment to an old De La Soul album while wearing large flannel shirts. After that, I got a little more self aware and I finally surrendered and put on a book on tape to save our collective state of consciousness, and possibly my sanity (/dignity?). It’s River of Doubt by Catherine Millard, and it’s actually pretty good for travel listening — all about Teddy Roosevelt’s South American expedition in 1912 down the “river of doubt,” an unmapped and extremely perilous tributary to the Amazon (or so we’re led to believe at this point in the book….I’ll correct myself tomorrow if that turns out to be false).  If I absorb nothing else, I now know that anacondas can weigh up to 500 lbs. 

After quite a long haul, we’ve just had a nice, cheap Mexican dinner (aweeeesome sopapilla) and are settling in for the night. Only five to six more hours to go — my next post will be from Cheyenne!

8D4 — I loved your bed! Enjoy your Bananagram….

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