Wag the Blog Redux: Obama vs Cheney
Thursday's dueling speeches on national security by President Barack Obama and former vice president Dick Cheney illustrated two sharply contrasting views on how the nation should respond to national security threats in the coming years.
To recap, Obama expressed his belief that the prison at Guantanamo Bay and waterboarding are part of the problem, rather than the solution to the country's long-term national security interests. Cheney, on the other hand, defended the policies of President Bush and said the decision to close Gitmo signals that the Obama administration underestimates the seriousness of terrorist threats.
In our last Wag the Blog, we asked you to assess both arguments -- putting your personal opinions of Obama and Cheney aside -- to declare a winner. Who had the most fact-packed, persuasive argument?
Read what fellow Fixistas had to say below as aggregated by Post Digital politics producer Sarah Lovenheim:
"Obama's approach is based on thoughtful, objective analysis. Cheney's approach is based on fear. Obama considers the US to be part of the international community and strives to participate in the laws of the international community. Cheney considers the US to be above and exempt from any law--both international and US--as if the 9/11 event gives the US a pass to do anything it wants, to anyone, at any time. Obama's approach comes from mindfulness and consideration for humanity. Cheney's approach comes from distrust, hate, and obsessive fear." --peggypollo
"I felt most American today listening to the President's speech about what America should and will stand for and being honest enough not to pretend that he and no one else can be certain we will never have another attack on U.S. soil... I disagree with Dick Cheney mostly on what seems to be that we must fight the war on terrorism alone and that potential allies are rather arrogantly dismissed. That is dangerous and irresponsible speak." --kimh1000
"President Obama is ahead on substance, because he has the rule of law on his side. Mr. Cheney is arguing that the ends justify the means, and that is always a specious argument. The president's '5th category' will, as he predicts, be a matter of much debate. He will be working with Justice and Defense to provide the proper framework for their continued detention.
In my opinion, if these prisoners are allowed to have representation, to know what they are accused of, and have had a chance to make their case, then they are being treated much better than they have in the last several years. I am willing to withhold judgment for a few months to see what the president does in these cases." --mikeinmidland
"I thought Cheney won on points. He made a argument about what would happen to the hard-core detainees if GBay was shutdown. Obama didn't really have a concrete plan." -- rusty6
"I read Cheney's speech and thought it was a strong portrayal of his position. We did what we needed to do. I then read the President's speech...the speech went on and on and on. If it had been half the length I would say the President won hands down. But, being concise is essential in speechifying, and so I must say that Cheney's speech was better." -- myhojda
"Attempting to judge the speeches from a pure substance stand point, I would give the round slightly to former Vice President Cheney. Both individuals made fairly illogical arguments that were light on actual logic and factual statements and heavy on value- laden quotes aimed at evoking visceral reactions.
Therefore, if someone who knew nothing of either candidate went and read the transcripts of the speeches... I would argue that the speech centered on 'protection of country', 'us against them mentality', and 'lofty ideals of elites come second to protecting our children' rhetoric, trump 'for the good of all men', 'making our country safer through encouraging others to like us' and 'don't stoop to their level' rhetoric.
f you have ever been told by someone to take the high road or not to stoop to their level, what do you almost always wind up wanting to do? Not Take the High Road! When looking at the words on the transcripts I give the edge to the former Vice President." -- collins2789
No Clear Winner
"Cheney went out of his way to express scorn for American values and ideals, regarding them as luxuries and inapplicable to dangerous times. He re-asserted that torture saved lives, yet another reiteration of the lie that nobody with access to classified documents has come forward to corroborate. He even descended to equate American idealism with 'political correctness,' playing once again to the base emotions, to fear and hate. He even used the word 'tough' repeatedly, like a schoolyard bully.
Obama appealed to American decency and ideals, to ideas that have no resonance to the hate-crazed and enraged troglodytes who comprise the remaining GOP base. Those of us who believe in America as a land of good people with more at stake than grim eternal persistence were uplifeted. In short, each speech appealed to the audience that was already in tune with it. Obama's appeal to American greatness has no resonance to those who want phones tapped and prisoners tortured, Cheney's appeal to fear and hate has no resonance to people who think we're more than that."--chrisfox8
Washington Post editors
May 24, 2009; 9:55 AM ET
Categories: Wag The Blog
Save & Share: Previous: Wag the Blog Redux: Understanding Elizabeth Edwards
Next: White House Cheat Sheet: Obama the Fundraiser
Posted by: huj534op | May 30, 2009 8:11 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JakeD | May 26, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JakeD | May 26, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JRM2 | May 26, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: nodebris | May 26, 2009 1:22 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: FRedStatescom | May 26, 2009 1:06 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: nodebris | May 26, 2009 12:11 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: DDAWD | May 25, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 25, 2009 12:08 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: newbeeboy | May 25, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: newbeeboy | May 25, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 25, 2009 8:14 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: vbhoomes | May 25, 2009 8:14 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: DDAWD | May 25, 2009 5:26 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: kathlenec | May 24, 2009 9:31 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JakeD | May 24, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: BOBSTERII | May 24, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | May 24, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: newbeeboy | May 24, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Democrat_Culture_of_Corruption | May 24, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: daddyoyo | May 24, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: klowry57 | May 24, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: klowry57 | May 24, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: klowry57 | May 24, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: JakeD | May 24, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: lindaj4 | May 24, 2009 10:27 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: JakeD | May 24, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: newbeeboy | May 24, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.