Saturday, January 8, 2011

I refudiate the notion that I can’t spell potatoe, or why teleprompters can sometimes be a plus

Politicians, who are human after all, say really dumb things occasionally. Okay, maybe more than occasionally. But we all do. The only difference between us and them is that their mistakes are heard by great numbers of people and then published far and wide.
In fact, the title of this post includes two well-known examples, one by Sarah Palin (former governor of Alaska) and one by Dan Quayle (former Vice President under George Herbert Walker Bush).

My theory when people get their tangs all tongueled up is simple: their tongues have gotten in the way of their eye teeth and they can’t see what they’re saying.

Here are 30 examples of rather odd statements made in public by the last two presidents of the United States. So who said the following, Barack Obama or George W. Bush?

1) “Let me be absolutely clear. Israel is a strong friend of Israel’s.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

2) “I’ve now been in 57 states I think I have one left to go.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

3) “On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes and I see many of them in the audience here today...”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

4) “What they’ll say is, ‘Well it costs too much money,’ but you know what? It would cost, about. It it it would cost about the same as what we would spend. It. Over the course of 10 years it would cost what it would costs us. [nervous laugh] All right. Okay. We’re going to. It. It would cost us about the same as it would cost for about hold on one second. I can’t hear myself. But I’m glad you're fired up, though. I’m glad.”


A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

5) “The reforms we seek would bring greater competition, choice, savings and inefficiencies to our health care system.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

6) “I bowled a 129. It’s like -- it was like the Special Olympics, or something.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

7) “Of the many responsibilities granted to a president by our Constitution, few are more serious or more consequential than selecting a Supreme Court justice. The members of our highest court are granted life tenure, often serving long after the presidents who appointed them. And they are charged with the vital task of applying principles put to paper more than 20 centuries ago to some of the most difficult questions of our time.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

8) “Everybody knows that it makes no sense that you send a kid to the emergency room for a treatable illness like asthma, they end up taking up a hospital bed, it costs, when, if you, they just gave, you gave them treatment early and they got some treatment, and a, a breathalyzer, or inhalator, not a breathalyzer. I haven’t had much sleep in the last 48 hours.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

9) “It was interesting to see that political interaction in Europe is not different from the United States Senate. There’s a lot of I don’t know what the term is in Austrian wheeling and dealing.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

10) “I have made good judgments in the past. I have made good judgments in the future.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

11) “Will the highways on the internet become more few?”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

12) “It’s a time of sorrow and sadness when we lose a loss of life.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

13) “I appreciate the fact that you really snatched defeat out of the jaws of those who are trying to defeat us in Iraq.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

14) “I remember meeting a mother of a child who was abducted by the North Koreans right here in the Oval Office.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

15) “We’re concerned about Aids inside our White House -- make no mistake about it.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

16) “I’m honored to shake the hand of a brave Iraqi citizen who had his hand cut off by Saddam Hussein.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

17) “I’ve coined new words, like ‘misunderstanding’.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

18) “I recently met with the finance minister of the Palestinian Authority, was very impressed by his grasp of finances.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

19) “It’s in our country’s interests to find those who would do harm to us and get them out of harm’s way.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

20) “One year ago today, the time for excuse-making has come to an end.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

21) “I promise you I will listen to what has been said here, even though I wasn’t here.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

22) “You teach a child to read, and he or her will be able to pass a literacy test.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

23) “I don’t particularly like it when people put words in my mouth, either, by the way, unless I say it.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

24) “[The Taliban] have no disregard for human life.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

25) “When the governor calls, I answer his phone.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

26) “Those who enter the country illegally violate the law.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

27) “I think we agree, the past is over.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

28) “America stands for liberty, for the pursuit of happiness and for the unalien alienable right of life.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

29) “My job is a decision-making job, and as a result, I make a lot of decisions.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

30) “One of the great things about books is sometimes there are some fantastic pictures.”

A. Barack Obama
B. George W. Bush

[End of quiz]

What do you think? Every one of the 30 statements is genuine. How many A’s and how many B’s did you wind up with?

I will divulge the answers in my next post.

6 comments:

Pat - Arkansas said...

And you don't do political posts. Right? LOL Are you going to refudiate that statement?

Loved it!

rhymeswithplague said...

Pat, like George Washington, I cannot tell a lie: sometimes, if you scrunch up your face just so and squint and read between the lines, I actually do blog about religion, sex, and yes, even politics.

Verification word is moniumbl, which is a portmanteau word meaning either "monumental mumble" or "monumentally humble"...and only one of those phrases would apply to me on most days.

Yorkshire Pudding said...

"Rarely is the questioned asked: Is our children learning?" — George W Bush - Florence, South Carolina, Jan. 11, 2000

Mr Obama is a far more intelligent man and a more natural orator than George W Bush ever was. Your amusing quiz puts them on a par - as if they were equally prone to gaffes. That isn't the case. It is so sad to see, from afar, the vilification of Barack Obama. With the world economic downturn and the self-protectionist activities of Republican businessmen, the guy never really stood a chance.

rhymeswithplague said...

YP, this post is not about the relative intelligence or lack thereof of anyone. It is about the fact that people, being human, make mistakes sometimes in public speech, and sometimes the mistakes can be rather humorous.

But, since you brought it up, Messrs. Obama and Bush actually ARE on a par of sorts: they are both presidents of the United States of America. Anything beyond that smacks of political spin.

Anonymous said...

Just a couple of thoughts on Yorkshire Pudding's comments:

"Mr Obama is a far more intelligent man and a more natural orator than George W Bush ever was"

I say...Seriously?? You obviously haven't heard Mr. Obama speak much...

"With the world economic downturn and the self-protectionist activities of Republican businessmen, the guy never really stood a chance"

I say...No, the guy never really stood a chance because he's an idiot.

Snowbrush said...

Wow! I think you should be president because at least you can talk gooder than these guys.