Update: I’ll be vlogging the Edwards gig back in Portsmouth tomorrow so look for my vlog on the Town Hall event here in the next couple of days if you can’t get up to see it. And as far as reposting, I won’t be doing that here at BMG, this diary was written for kos. I can just edit the diaries to include the new video links here, at kos everything before the 4.0 upgrade got blown away and I can’t edit any of those old diaries.
December 29, 2006
In the future, I plan to keep the new account at YouTube pristine for CJ type videos and a second one for stuff I want to post that might get me banned. If you have video at YouTube that you just can’t lose then I recommend you re-evaluate your vlogging habits over there ASAP. Guerrillas, gorillas, vloggers, kossacks or anyone – think about it and keep copies on disc.
Why do I do these vlogs? Well may you ask, especially since I’m not a pro and don’t wish to be. It’s time consuming, I don’t get paid and sometimes I even fly to attend an event. I think the answer is simply: I’ve had enough and CNN so ain’t cutting it for me anymore. I’ve always been a news junkie and a strong Democrat, but it never occurred to me that I could participate in the process in a meaningful or substantive way outside of donating.
I hope that at least one of two things happen when you read one of these diaries. First, that you watch some video and come away from the vlog with a more positive impression of the subject. Second, that you are motivated to do something like this yourself. Since you’re already a blogger, you’re half way there.
The media is completely broken and it won’t get fixed in time to have proper or even barely adequate coverage of the next election. We can step into that void in a major way through citizen journalism. With or without video, local or national candidates, fundraisers or a rally, the CJ diaries covering events that I’ve read here in recent months have been some of the best and most informative diaries on this site.
So let’s all kick it up a notch and be respectful of candidate diaries that are not our choice for the ’08 gig. Here’s the first one I did from NH, before I knew what I was doing. Maybe I still don’t know what I’m doing, but I’m doing it. A bunch more are coming before the first, usually in the evenings if you’re up for some Edwards video stop by my homepage and check them out.
Edwards in NH: with Video April 21, 2006
Last night, I attended a Democracy for New Hampshire fundraiser featuring John Edwards held at the Gaslight Company in Portsmouth, NH. He gave a rousing speech.
Lori, the event organizer for DFNH, introduced the Senator. She worked on his NH campaign in ’04. Her intro, in part,
… for his commitment to human and civil rights and his firm belief in helping those who are disadvantaged get a hand-up and get going with better opportunities in life. Nobody does it better than John Edwards. I’ll just leave it at that, we all know who he is.
Edwards takes the mic, jumps up on a chair and shushes the crowd, seriously we were very rowdy that night. He tells the crowd, “Elizabeth is well,” and goes into an excellent version of a cute Jack story. Everyone is laughing in this shot because he just jumped up on the chair.
Then he gets down to business.
I’d like to say a few words about the Democratic Party and the issue of poverty, which is the cause of my life right now. First our party. Ya know, I’m just gonna say this in the simplest way I know how to say it. I’m not interested in being in a Democratic party that is a party of incrementalism.
I’m not interested in: George Bush has a tax cut and we’ve got a better little tax-cut. George Bush has got a little partial healthcare plan and we’ve got a little different partial healthcare plan.
Let me say this very clearly, I don’t believe in the same America George Bush believes in. And our party has to show some backbone and strength … it’s time for the Democratic party to lead again with some strength and passion.
I know why I’m a Democrat. I’m a Democrat because this party gives voice to people that have no voice. And it is time for us to do that once again without worrying what the political consequences are. And one place we can start is with 37 million of our own people that wake up every single day worried about feeding their children, worried about clothing their children, worried about having a decent place to live.
You know in the richest nation on the planet this is just wrong. And all of us collectively we all have a responsibility to do something about it…
There is one thing I am absolutely certain about. There is a hunger in America. A hunger to be inspired again, inspired by something good and positive that all of us can be engaged in. Americans want a sense of national community…
He delves into Katrina here and spends some time on that issue. Katrina illustrates perfectly for us, in a shockingly disappointing kind of a way, the theme of Two Americas and the concern that I personally have over a permanent underclass being accepted and tolerated in this country. It was interesting for me that night to see that the Two Americas theme has continued to bear fruit. That message has now evolved into the desire to build One America together.
It’s a lie.
Most of them are single mothers. Bottom line – that’s not okay. No way – that’s even close to being okay. We can do something.
That’s also a lie.
Medicaid, Medicare, Head Start and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act School came out of the Great Society programs and millions of Americans benefited, the poverty rate fell from 23% to 12% during that time. That’s not a failure.
That’s also a lie.
Everybody knows that.
That’s the truth.
John Edwards is the son-of-a-mill-worker. “I think I managed to get that into every consecutive speech I’ve given for three years now.” That’s quite a streak. Cal Ripken played 2632 consecutive Major League Baseball games can Edwards really be that far behind? I digress.
“So for those of you that say, there’s nothing that can be done. Well there’s some very simple things that can be done. ”
- “End the embarrassment of our national minimum wage in this country.”
- Expand EITC
- Absolute and active support for service unions in this country.
- Address “the asset gap” in this country and predatory lending.
- Address racial and economic segregation in this country. Address class in this country.
This could affect 50-60 million workers in this country. 50-60 million workers.
The segregation and class spin that Edwards put on his remarks that night surprised me. Nobody since Bobby Kennedy has addressed class seriously in this country in the context of a Presidential campaign and I had never really heard Edwards on segregation before.
But if we believe in it [equality] then when are we actually going to start living together? You remember what you saw coming out of the lower 9th ward of New Orleans, poor people clustered together, black people clustered together. You can’t blame New Orleans, it’s true of cities all across America.
This is so unhealthy, it is unhealthy for our democracy, it is unhealthy for our country… We can confront it and talk about it and try to come up with some ideas to knock down not only the racial barriers, but the economic barriers that exist in this country too.
The biggest thing that we have to do:
When in the world are the Democrats, our leaders, in this country … when are we going to quit talking about incremental change to the health care system and recognize that health care cannot in the richest nation on the planet be a privilege for the privileged, but it ought to be a right for every single American?
We need universal healthcare in this country.
This was one of the biggest applause lines of the night. There were many, but in this one you can hear a fellow attendee screaming, “Single-payer, single-payer,” from behind me so loud that we could all hear him over the applause. God bless Single-payer guy. We need more of him.
Home stretch here guys, promise.
This clip contains one of my favorite Edwardian riffs.
It’s the one entitled: “Why I have sleepless nights worried whether Exxon is making enough money,” by John Edwards.
The sub-title is: “The budget is a moral document and the Bush budget is patently immoral.”
Billions of dollars out of Medicare and healthcare for poor kids, listen, this is not complicated. This is black and white. Billions of dollars of tax-payer money to Exxon while we’re taking away healthcare for poor children? It is immoral. We should be screaming from the rooftops about this. The country needs to hear from us.
And these republicans even now try to claim the moral high ground. Here’s the truth, the truth is there’s a huge void in moral leadership in this country.
Edwards launches in to a recounting of his time in India recently. His remarks describing the living conditions that he saw draw audible gasps from the crowd.
Darfur. “I thought that my party said after Rwanda, “Not on our watch’. Where is America [on Darfur]?” Someone from the crowd screams out, “we’re in Iraq, that’s where.” The Senator replied, “that’s right”.
This clip ends in a brilliant metaphor for speaking with a true voice as he delivers his closing tag to a rousing ovation,
“The leaders we’ve been waiting for us.”
What’s your next assignment?
See you out there…
Videos are now cross-posted at google, the new owners of YouTube, cruel irony: