Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The (Not) State of the Union Address

Hear today's Radio or Not podcast by clicking here (runtime 57:48)

Once again last night, Barack Obama proved to us why we elected him President. One of my first thoughts after he got rolling was "I'm so happy he's president!"

Unlike during the speeches delivered at this time of the year for the past eight years, I was riveted last night. President Obama spoke to us like the intelligent adults we are, in language to which we could relate and understand; not talking over our heads or down to us (as LA Governor Bobby Jindal seemed to do in his Republican response).

He struck the appropriate balance between the seriousness of the mess in which this country was left and the hopefulness of where we, under Obama's guidance, should rightfully return.

Today on the Radio or Not podcast, we go almost line by line through the speech and dissect it. It's lengthy, but worth the time to listen to it...

If you'd prefer not to hear my running commentary, you can watch the whole thing here:

One semi-related note. Please read the statement below and, if you agree, follow the link to sign on at ...

Statement on Prosecution of Former High Officials

We urge Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a non-partisan independent Special Counsel to immediately commence a prosecutorial investigation into the most serious alleged crimes of former President George W. Bush, former Vice President Richard B. Cheney, the attorneys formerly employed by the Department of Justice whose memos sought to justify torture, and other former top officials of the Bush Administration.

Our laws, and treaties that under Article VI of our Constitution are the supreme law of the land, require the prosecution of crimes that strong evidence suggests these individuals have committed. Both the former president and the former vice president have confessed to authorizing a torture procedure that is illegal under our law and treaty obligations. The former president has confessed to violating the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

We see no need for these prosecutions to be extraordinarily lengthy or costly, and no need to wait for the recommendations of a panel or "truth" commission when substantial evidence of the crimes is already in the public domain. We believe the most effective investigation can be conducted by a prosecutor, and we believe such an investigation should begin immediately.

Drafted by The Robert Jackson Steering Committee

Signed By:
Center for Constitutional Rights
The National Lawyers Guild
Society of American Law Teachers - SALT
Human Rights USA
After Downing Street
American Freedom Campaign
Ann Wright, retired US Army Reserve Colonel and US diplomat
ANSWER Coalition
Backbone Campaign
Brad Blog
Chesapeake Citizens
Cities for Peace
Citizens for Accountability, Ventura County
Citizens For Legitimate Government
CODE PINK: Women for Peace
Daniel Ellsberg, Truth-Telling Project
Defending Dissent Foundation
Delaware Valley Veterans for America
Glenn Greenwald
Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space
Gold Star Families for Peace
Grandmothers Against the War
Grassroots America
High Road for Human Rights Advocacy Project
Impeach Colorado
Impeach for Peace
Indict Bush Now
Individuals for Justice
Iraq Veterans Against the War
Ralph Lopez, author of "Truth in the Age of Bushism," chairman, Jobs For Afghans
Justice Through Music
Marcus Raskin, co-founder of Institute for Policy Studies, member of editorial board of the /Nation/, member of the special staff of the National Security Council in the Kennedy Administration
Media Freedom Foundation/Project Censored
Naomi Wolf, author of /End of America: Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot/, and /Give Me Liberty: A Handbook for American Revolutionaries/
National Accountability Network
Northeast Impeachment Coalition
Op Ed News
Partnership for Civil Justice (PCJ)
Patriotic Response to Renegade
Peace Action
Peace Team
People for Peace & Justice/St. Augustine, FL
Peter McLaren, Professor, University of California, Los Angeles
The Progressive
Progressive Democrats of America
PDA/DFA South Jersey
PDA Rhode Island
The Public Record
Radio or Not
Republicans for Impeachment
Save the Bill of Rights
Smirking Chimp
Christiane Brown, The Solution Zone
Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International (TASSC)
Tulsa Impeachment Committee
United for Peace and Justice
Velvet Revolution
Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity
Veterans for Peace
Veterans for Peace 27
Veterans for Peace 099
Voters for Peace
War Crimes Times
War Is Illegal
Wisconsin Impeachment/Bring Our Troops Home Coalition
World Can't Wait