Witnessing: Obama's inauguration.

The camera cut to W after the speech, and at first from the look on his face I figured W was thinking, “Damn, why can’t I speak like that?” On reflection, I decided he was probably thinking, “I could really go for a cookie right now. And a glass of milk. I wonder if there’s any milk on the helicopter? I’ll have to ask Laura. Boy, do I like cookies.”

Anyway, great speech. Nice acknowledgment of atheists (I really wasn’t expecting that!). Some slyly devastating digs at dictators that could form the basis of a deeply subversive foreign policy if they turn out to be more than rhetoric. Forewarning that there are going to be tough decisions made–he deemphasized bipartisanship here, for which I’m grateful.

All in all, I’m pretty happy with the speech.

Daniel

And what’s the deal with ‘woman’ and ‘female’ as if that gender is just a subgroup of man. :rolleyes:

It will never end.

In actuality, it was a recognition of the Ursine-American community.

I thought the speech was good. A bit light on the inspirational side, but strong on laying out the challenges and making it clear that things would not be quick or easy. Given the messes he’s inherited, I thought it was about the right tone.

Forebears, not forebearers.

Forebearers would be… the people that carry your front, or something.

I liked the inclusion of the irreligious. At first, I thought, “Non-believers? Who says that?” and then realized it was the best catchall for atheists/agnostics/deists. The hippy chick down my office hallway yelled out, “Woo! Shout out to the atheists!”

I thought the “unclench your fists” line was very powerful, although the speech didn’t really have much of his usual soaring oratory stuff.

On first hearing, live, I found the speech good but not great.

On watching a repeat broadcast of the speech, having had a chance to think it over, I thought it was excellent – struck just the right balance between sober assessment and hopeful determination, between the often difficult lessons of the past and the inspiring possibilities inherent in our future, if we all work hard, work together toward it.

I think his plain-spoken approach was just right for the messages he wanted to convey.

Oh, and his shout-out to the “non-believers” got a fist-pump and cheer from this atheist.

When it came down to Clinton versus Obama for the campaign race, there was a lot of talk about how many feminists and how feminist Obama, and by extension, his campaign was.

I think you’re right; didn’t we also fight for our independence for the right to arm bears? But which four? It must be the three from the story, and another one.

All lame kidding aside, including mine, I was gratified to hear him urge restoring science to its rightful place in public policy. Faith, IMO, has been a benefit to humankind in many ways, and also a curse, but I’m willing to say the net effect is positive. I do not consider myself an atheist, but I have no patience or time for blind, unreasoning faith. Blind unreasoning faith as a driver of public policy is akin to every airhead contestant on Deal Or No Deal who insists that they have the million dollars right there in the case they have chosen, so they can’t possibly knock it out of the game.*

**Reason crowned regains her throne
We’ll no more fail and falter mindlessly.
**.

*I don’t usually watch DOND but happened to see part of it the other night, and there was this one contestant who was the archetype of that. I think in the end she walked away with $150.

This kind of reaction, which I’ve seen in other places to Obama, really makes me wonder if some people will ever be happy. There’s always something to complain about. If he said “atheists”, then you complain that he mentioned all the other faiths. Or that there was a benediction. Or whatever. Complaints complaints complaints. I’m sick of it.

I may have misheard the snippet I caught on the radio, but did he say 43 men before him had taken that oath, or he was the 44th man to take the oath or something?

Tsk. Grover Cleveland gets double-counted yet again.

Common misconception. Taft was actually two identical twin midgets in a complex arrangement of armatures and bladders.

I adored his speech. I found it inspiring, uplifting, challenging and determined.

I called my girlfriend who volunteers at the hospital today who is one of the few people I know that voted for Obama. I said “Congratulations, we have a new President. By the way, the speech was great, the poet pretty much sucked and the last preacher rocked.”

She got a call a little while later from her friend in England, who watched the inauguration (her first ever to watch) and told her exactly what I told her. My friend is going to catch his speech, cook dinner and sit down and watch the last preacher. Two for two can’t be wrong. :slight_smile:

President Obama, President Obama, President Obama! Wheee!

Can someone explain to me what he meant by this excerpt (the part in bold)?

Using oil enriches Arabs and creates pollution. I’m a little surprised (and not at all displeased) he used the word “adversaries”.

And what? Arabs are the enemy?

Some Arabs. Possibly wealthy Texan oil barons, too.

Not the ones who sell us oil though. They’re different arabs

Well as long as he doesn’t want to invade the primary oil supplier to the USA: Kanukistan http://www.eia.doe.gov/pub/oil_gas/petroleum/data_publications/company_level_imports/current/import.html

According to the dictionary, its root is “atheos + ist,” not “a - theist.”

It’s common nowadays for many skeptics to insist that the term “atheist” comes from the “a (without) theism,” but that’s not its historical origin.

mm. My dictionary says:

priv. means privative which comes from privation which means “consisting in the absence or removal of something”

my bold. So the conclusion we can draw is that:

Atheist doesn’t mean a negation of god’s existence - it can also mean an absence of the whole idea of God.

Atheism isn’t an anti-movement. It can also deny that there was a god in the first place. It’s not denying a god in response to the claims of theists,it denied there was a god before the theists had ever said anything. It’s an absence of god rather than a removal of god.

Sorry rambling.

Well, m-w.com has both forebearers and forebears as meaning ancestors. Both sound nearly identical in the Chicagoland accent.