Archive for the ‘oratory’ Category

Vonnegut on Computers

May 6, 2014

Vonnegut on Computers

Commencement speaker at Agnes Scott College, May 15, 1999, Kurt Vonnegut: 

“Computers are no more your friends, and no more increasers of your brainpower, than slot machines…

Only well-informed, warm-hearted people can teach others things they’ll always remember and love. Computers and TV don’t do that.

A computer teaches a child what a computer can become.

An educated human being teaches a child what a child can become. Bad men just want your bodies. TVs and computers want your money, which is even more disgusting. It’s so much more dehumanizing.”

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Happy Birthday, Frederick Douglass

February 14, 2014

Happy Birthday, Frederick Douglass

“Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.”

— Frederick Douglass (ca. 1818 — 1895), Speech on the twenty-fourth anniversary of Emancipation in the District of Columbia, Washington, D.C. (April 1886)

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Shortlink: http://wp.me/p6sb6-iQh

Image (from an 1856 Ambrotype in the National Portrait Gallery) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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College Speech by Scholarly Sarah Palin

April 14, 2010

College Speech by Scholarly Sarah Palin

On Friday, June 25th, California State University Stanislaus will mark its 50th anniversary the way any public college in a cash-strapped state would, with a $500-a-plate black tie dinner. The featured speaker: noted scholar Sarah Palin, failed vice presidential candidate and former Temp-Governor of Alaska. Mrs. Palin is the perfect college speaker, having attended five colleges in six years, one of them twice.

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Gettysburg Address, November 19, 1863

November 19, 2009

Gettysburg Address, November 19, 1863

On this day in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln delivered a brief speech in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

If you missed the meeting, the PowerPoint is here.

 

Slides via Peter Norvig.

FindingDulcinea has an excellent post on the importance of this event.

More on PowerPoint here.

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

4th of July Oratory from Sarah Palin

July 4, 2009

4th of July Oratory from Sarah Palin

Americans have long celebrated Independence Day with great speeches presenting  the principles of Democracy and Freedom with clarity and power. This year the nation’s most moving, patriotic, and eloquent Fourth of July Oration was by Alaska’s Governor Sarah Palin:

Now that’s what made our country great.

The offical transcript is here; you’ll want to print these inspiring words on parchment and recite them on Independence Days to come. Especially the part about “only dead fish go with the flow.”

Have a safe and sane 4th of July, and God Bless America.

 

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

If at First You Don’t Secede ….

April 18, 2009

If at First You Don't Secede ....

Last Wednesday, Governor Rick Perry told a group of teabag-wielding Texans that the state might secede from the Union again. This won him cheers from the crowd — unsurprising, since Mr. Perry is a former Aggie cheerleader. Now that we think about it, that appears to be his major qualification for public office.

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New Job for Bush

February 25, 2009

New Job for Bush

You may be out of work, but George W. Bush has a new job. The former president is using his legendary oratorical skills to forge a new career, Mike Allen reported in Politico. After hearing the news, David Letterman’s writers required oxygen.

Mr. Bush is booked to give ten speeches this year in Canada, the U.S., Europe, and Asia. He is represented by the Washington Speakers Bureau. The agency’s motto: “Inspiration from the World’s Greatest Minds.” Really.

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Superbowl Veg-Out

January 30, 2009

Superbowl Veg-Out

This Sunday we the people will remain faithful to the ideals of our forebears and true to our Tostitos. On that day we plant ourselves like torpid tubers on every upholstered surface of our land because we have chosen hope and beer over fear, unity of purpose and bean dip over conflict and discord.

This year we spectate amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. The challenges we face are real. The Steelers? Sure. But Arizona? St. Louis in exile? Puh-leez. What’s up with that? Perhaps Nobel laureate Al Gore can explain it; not us.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of sports handicappers. Sunday’s point spread was clearly devised by AIG, Citibank, and Bernard Madoff.

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20 January 2009

January 20, 2009

20 January 2009

The 44th President of the United States of America will be was sworn into office on the steps of the United States Capitol today, January 20, 2009, just before after noon Eastern Time. See the White House web site.

11:30 AM Musical selections —  The United States Marine Band, the San Francisco Boys Chorus and the San Francisco Girls Chorus

Welcoming Remarks— Senator Dianne Feinstein

Invocation — Dr. Rick Warren

Musical Selection — Aretha Franklin

11:46 AM Vice Presidential Oath of Office administered to Joseph R. Biden, Jr. by Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

Musical Selection— Itzhak Perlman (Violin), Yo-Yo Ma (Cello), Gabriela Montero (Piano), Anthony McGill (Clarinet)

11:56 AM Presidential Oath of Office administered to Barack H. Obama by the Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts, Jr.

12:01 PM Inaugural Address –– President Barack H. Obama

Poem — Elizabeth Alexander

Benediction — The Reverend Dr. Joseph E. Lowery

The National Anthem — The United States Navy Band and Sea Chanters vocal ensemble

Details from PIC. CBS on the Lincoln Bible.  Inaugual FAQs from VOA.  Live video coverage from VOA

 

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Media Alert — Caution, Real News in DC This Weekend

January 16, 2009

Media Alert -- Caution, Real News in DC This Weekend

We hate to disturb working reporters covering the vital Celebrity Inaugural Ball lobster-booze-caviar beat, but real news may break in Washington this weekend. Okay, real political news, but that’s as close to “reality” as most remaining Washington scribes get these days.

Sleep-deprived, hung-over DC reporters should report to Howard University at 11AM Sunday for Chapel Call.  Stop groaning — it’s a story. The speaker will be Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., Pastor Emeritus of Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ. 

The nondenominational Chapel Call will be held at Howard’s huge Cramton Auditorium to accommodate the expected crush of Fox News, National Review, and Washington Times reporters. Just joshing — the popular weekly event outgrew Rankin Chapel and moved to Cramton long ago.

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