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John F. Kennedy's Final Public Words

"Mrs. Kennedy is organizing herself. It takes longer. [laughter] But, of course, she looks better than we do when she does it."

JFK delivered two speeches on the morning of November 22, 1963. The first took place around 9AM just outside the Hotel Texas in downtown Fort Worth, where a large crowd had gathered in the morning drizzle to hear the president speak. (PDF photo slideshow) Shortly afterward, he addressed the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce at a breakfast event, where he talked about the city's contributions to national defense, including the B-36 and B-58 bombers (both built there) and a proposed future project, the TFX (Tactical Fighter Experimental). [more inside]
posted by Atom Eyes on Nov 22, 2013 - 16 comments

"I am not a prop. I am part of the new generation of suffragettes."

Madison Kimrey is a rather exceptional 12-year-old girl whose speech protesting North Carolina's removal of a voting preregistration program for 16-and-17-year-olds has been making the rounds lately, thanks to Kimrey's intelligence and astonishing eloquence. Her blog, Functional Human Being, is similarly an engaging read, whether she's writing about Miley Cyrus, Daisy Coleman, or supporting the saner elements of the Republican party.
posted by Rory Marinich on Nov 12, 2013 - 35 comments

Weiner Recontextualized

"So, after reading all his sexts and stuff, it’s basically impossible for me to not hear every single thing Anthony Weiner says as some sort of horrible half-assed double entendre sexty come-on. So I cut together a few of his recent public statements to demonstrate why I laugh every time he speaks." (SLYTP)
posted by The Whelk on Aug 15, 2013 - 53 comments

"It takes a village, people!"

Ash Beckham at Ignite Boulder: why you shouldn't say "that's so gay."
posted by Wordwoman on Mar 24, 2013 - 24 comments

"I began to believe voices in my head -- that I was a freak, that I am broken, that there is something wrong with me, that I will never be lovable."

"I am here because when I was young, I wanted very badly to be a writer, I wanted to be a filmmaker, but I couldn’t find anyone like me in the world and it felt like my dreams were foreclosed simply because my gender was less typical than others."
On Saturday, Lana Wachowski (co-director of the "Matrix" franchise and "Cloud Atlas") received a "Visibility Award" from the Human Rights Campaign for her recent decision to publicly come out as transgender. In a powerful 25-minute acceptance speech, Lana spoke about the pain she went through growing up and how she developed self-acceptance. Video. Transcript. Q&A with the Hollywood Reporter.
posted by zarq on Oct 24, 2012 - 76 comments

America’s capital is briefly moved to Lancaster, Pennsylvania

A Conservative History of the United States - Jack Hitt for New Yorker's Shouts & Murmurs, pieces together America's storied history from quotes by Rick Perry, Dick Armey, Mike Huckabee, Dan Quayle and more.
posted by The Whelk on Sep 19, 2012 - 151 comments

You Are Not Special

An English teacher delivers a better than average commencement address.
Contrary to what your u9 soccer trophy suggests, your glowing seventh grade report card, despite every assurance of a certain corpulent purple dinosaur, that nice Mister Rogers and your batty Aunt Sylvia, no matter how often your maternal caped crusader has swooped in to save you... you’re nothing special.

posted by COD on Jun 8, 2012 - 190 comments

Obama elevate my soul

How the president-elect tapped into a powerful—and only recently studied—human emotion called "elevation." Dacher Keltner, a professor of psychology at the University of California-Berkeley, studies the emotions of uplift, and he has tried everything from showing subjects vistas of the Grand Canyon to reading them poetry—with little success. But just this week one of his postdocs came in with a great idea: Hook up the subjects, play Barack Obama's victory speech, and record as their autonomic nervous systems go into a swoon....It was while looking through the letters of Thomas Jefferson that Haidt first found a description of elevation. Jefferson wrote of the physical sensation that comes from witnessing goodness in others: It is to "dilate [the] breast and elevate [the] sentiments … and privately covenant to copy the fair example." (via Geek Press) [more inside]
posted by caddis on Dec 20, 2008 - 50 comments

Get your motivate on.

They may take our lives, but they’ll never take our Independence Day! 40 motivational movie speeches in 2 minutes.
posted by ericbop on Dec 11, 2008 - 39 comments

Whackity schmackity doo, kids!

All of you have been given a harsh gift. It’s the same gift the graduating class of 1917, and 1938, and 1968 and now you guys got – the chance to enter adulthood when the world teeters on the rim of the sphincter of oblivion. You’re jumping into the deep end. You have no choice but to be exceptional. Patton Oswalt addresses the class of 2008 at his old high school. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Jul 10, 2008 - 104 comments

My advice to the graduates: Plastics.

Randy Pausch, Barbara Kingsolver, Barack Obama, and J.K. Rowling inspired the hell out of Carnegie Mellon, Duke, Wesleyan, and Harvard graduates this year. If you're a big fan of pomp and circumstance, you'll also want to check out these: Chuck Norris at Liberty University, Samantha Power at Pitzer College, and Michelle Nijhuis at Reed College. [more inside]
posted by anotherpanacea on Jun 8, 2008 - 36 comments

One for the History Books

Obama's Gettysburg Address. Today we saw and heard a preview of our brightest possible American future in Senator Barack Obama's glorious speech. This, then, is what it means to be presidential. To be moral. To have a real center. To speak honestly, from the heart, for the benefit of all. If there was any doubt about what we have missed in the anti-intellectual, ruthlessly incurious Bush years, and even the slippery Clinton ones (the years of "what is is"), those doubts were laid to rest by Barack Obama's magisterial speech today. A speech in which he distanced himself from a flawed father figure, Reverend Wright, and did so with almost Shakespearian dignity and honor. One of the most important speeches on race in decades if not longer. (text) [more inside]
posted by caddis on Mar 18, 2008 - 1126 comments

Don't

Don't make Barney Frank angry. [more inside]
posted by awesomebrad on Nov 8, 2007 - 60 comments

Rationalize rhetoric and it speaks to your mind; personify her and she speaks to your soul

American Rhetoric :: an online archive
posted by anastasiav on Aug 22, 2007 - 14 comments

Authors live at Google

It's the closest we'll come to "working" there: Google brings in authors to speak to their employees, and now you can see presentations from Lawrence Lessig, John McCain, Metafilter's own John Scalzi, and more.
posted by drezdn on May 8, 2007 - 22 comments

Fellow-Citizens of the Senate and House of Representatives:

State of the Union Addresses 1790-2006 :: complete texts
posted by anastasiav on Jan 3, 2007 - 18 comments

What does Firefox have to do with social justice?

Watch Even Moglen's 2006 Keynote at the International Plone Conference Eben delivered an inspiring and wide-ranging talk that traced the connections between the free software movement, the One Laptop Per Child project, and the past three hundred years of modern industrial economic development, and placed our work into the larger context of the ongoing journey towards freedom and equality for all people.
Links: QuickTime | MP3 | YouTube | Transcript
posted by commonmedia on Dec 10, 2006 - 25 comments

Concession speeches

Please enjoy concession speeches from various people who did not win, or skip if not interested. Katherine Harris. Jim Talent. Rick Santorum. Harold Ford. Mike DeWine. Richard Nixon. Kerry Healey. Ned Lamont.
posted by thirteenkiller on Nov 8, 2006 - 58 comments

Oscars moments

The Oscars don't only breed argument about who should have won--but also about the speeches? Were they good? Did they suck? What are the classics? What's Memorable? What's Misquoted? How would your speech go? Would you thank your "makeup man"? Oprah? Complain? Or just go crazy? And here are some more top ones (1,2,3) and another bottom. And Oscar Night bingo in case it all gets to be too much, too boring or too damn long.
posted by FeldBum on Mar 2, 2006 - 17 comments

The Torch has been Passed....

Audio link to the Inaugural Address delivered January 20, 1961.
posted by squalor on Nov 22, 2005 - 18 comments

Speechifying

Do you know your rhetoric? You can hear how it is used in the top 100 American speeches of all time, 63 of which have the original audio recordings! (prev.) The list has some odd omissions, such as the Gettysburg Address (and here in convenient presentation form) and non-American speakers like Churchill, so this shorter international list may be useful. While the slow decline in the quality of presidential addresses is much lamented, scriptwriters are stepping up, see for example, top movie speeches of all time ("Smells like victory" beats "You can't handle the truth"). So, MeFiers, do any of these still inspire, or is rhetoric dead?
posted by blahblahblah on May 24, 2005 - 31 comments

"You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train"

Arundhati Roy's call for action, on accepting the Sydney Peace Prize. (That's action from us specifically). I often find Roy's speeches overblown, overcooked and one-sided, and if that kind of rhetoric bothers you then you might want to skip this link. But she does speak lyrically, and I find it hard to argue against what she says this time.
posted by iffley on Nov 10, 2004 - 7 comments

Full English text of Bin Laden

what the news in america isn't telling us. Here is the Full transcript of Bin Ladin's speech
posted by Ladymerv on Nov 1, 2004 - 75 comments

Free Speech on Demand

Freespeeches.net is the future of television. Videoblogging focuses the global scope of TV down to the substantive issues that matter. Freespeeches.net concentrates on politics, offering several brief, easily downloadable clips a week of voices ranging from Bush to Libertarian candidate Michael Badnarik. (Ann Coulter's riff on "camel-riding nomads" is particularly grotesque.) See videoblogging.info for an introduction to this rapidly up-and-coming new medium, and then check out Underground Clips and Demand Media too. They watch TV so you don't have to.
posted by digaman on Oct 25, 2004 - 16 comments

Roll your own presidential stump speeches.

Roll your own stump speeches. Comes in two delicious flavors: George Bush and John Kerry.
posted by geronimo_rex on Oct 8, 2004 - 1 comment

iTunes 9/11 and the DNC

iTunes (and Audible) make the 9-11 Comission and speeches from the Democratic National Convention available for free downloads. Thought this was cool. Couldn't find a previous post about this, so pardon if a double post.
posted by rathikd on Jul 30, 2004 - 12 comments

Mad As Hell

Mad As Hell

First we had Al Gore letting loose with both barrels at NYU, and now Bill Moyers drops the bomb on the poverty gap in this country.

"The rich have the right to buy more homes than anyone else. They have the right to buy more cars than anyone else, more gizmos than anyone else, more clothes and vacations than anyone else. But they do not have the right to buy more democracy than anyone else."

P.S: Earth to Kerry: mebbe you want to talk to one of these guys, they seem to be on to something. Have one of your speech writers give them a call...
posted by piedrasyluz on Jun 18, 2004 - 47 comments

Worth Sharing II

Remarks by President Bush Long, but worth it.
posted by David Dark on Jun 3, 2004 - 139 comments

Doctor Bono's Call to Arms

Bono's commencement address to U.Penn. "The world is more malleable than you think and it's waiting for you to hammer it into shape.... That's what this degree of yours is, a blunt instrument. So go forth and build something with it." [via Ed]
posted by rory on Jun 2, 2004 - 46 comments

Kennedy's other speach.

Senator Edward Kennedy gave two magnificent speeches last week, but only one received the attention it deserved. While his blistering attack on the Bush Administration for manipulating and distorting intelligence to justify attacking Iraq was noted in the Washington Post and other papers, the Senator's fiery progressive manifesto--delivered at a New York conference called Re-Imagining the Welfare State--went virtually unreported. "For them the law of the jungle is the best economic policy for America--not equal opportunity, not fairness, not the American dream. Their ideas will inevitably result in a lesser America, and have already meant a growing gulf between rich and poor." (From The Nation)
posted by n9 on Mar 12, 2004 - 45 comments

George W Bush and the real state of the Union

George W Bush and the real state of the Union. Today the President gives his annual address. As the election battle begins, how does his first term add up? It's all been said before but it's good (?) to see it all nicely put together.
posted by acrobat on Jan 20, 2004 - 82 comments

The Gettysburg Address

In the War Between The States, no finer words were ever spoken than those by Abraham Lincoln on 19 November 1863 at the consecration of a cemetery in rural Pennsylvania for the over 50,000 who died in the three worst days of battle in a wretched civil war. The speech is often included in US history books and collections of influential American speeches as one of the strongest examples of presidential oratory ever given. Is it any wonder, then, that it should inspire modern art?
posted by Ogre Lawless on Dec 18, 2003 - 6 comments

Online American Speeches and Text Bank

American rhetoric online "A database of 5,000+ full text, audio and video (streaming) versions of public speeches, sermons, legal proceedings, lectures, debates, interviews, other recorded media events..." all in one unbelievable ugly website. From Roosevelt to Malcom X to Ursula LeGuin to Bush as text or stream with Scesis Onomaton from Bill Murray(mp3). Here's for a starting point for the aesthetically picky. Excellent resource- ie 21minute Malcom X "Ballot or Bullet" (mp3) speech!- from a prof at a public university in Texas that that makes me reconsider lynx but excites me about the internet.
posted by superchris on Nov 11, 2003 - 5 comments

Bird-Dogging the Apocalypse

Bird-Dogging involves showing up at a presentation or speech by a public figure and asking well-informed, pointed questions. Now Bird-Doggers are getting organized. Live near New Hampshire? The American Friends Service Committee has a handy set of tips and a schedule of appearances by the Democratic contenders. What questions would you ask?
posted by alms on Sep 2, 2003 - 24 comments

Forty years ago today

...we are all mortal Forty years ago today, the US President tentatively outlined the idea of coexistence with an intractable enemy. The famous, resonant lines about breathing the same air and cherishing our children's future feel oddly buried in the speech, between a "secondly" and a "thirdly". Cuba was still some months in the future when Kennedy gave this speech. Audio here.
posted by gdav on Jun 10, 2003 - 26 comments

Naom Chomsky

MIT Liguist Naom Chomsky The New Yorker has a good collection of links to his articles and speeches online
posted by nish01 on Mar 30, 2003 - 35 comments

The Mind of a Madman.

The Mind of a Madman. PRESIDENT SADDAM HUSSEIN’S ADDRESS ON THE ELEVENTH ANNIVERSARY OF THE GRAND BATTLE "MOTHER OF ALL BATTLES" JANUARY 16-17, 1991. See also President Saddam Hussein's speech on the occasion of the 14th anniversary of the day of the great victory over Iran and other funny stories. And now, for the rest of the story.
posted by Mack Twain on Sep 14, 2002 - 10 comments

Online Audio Recordings: UC Berkeley Lectures and Events

Online Audio Recordings: UC Berkeley Lectures and Events Including speeches by James Baldwin, Walter Blum, Malcolm X, and Noam Chomsky, to name a few.
posted by RobertLoch on Apr 13, 2002 - 13 comments

Highlights of President Musharraf of Pakistan's Speech To The Nation.

Highlights of President Musharraf of Pakistan's Speech To The Nation.
Glossary: Hikmat = Wisdom
Summary = Godspeed USA
posted by adnanbwp on Sep 19, 2001 - 8 comments

Bush and Gore’s last speeches of the 2000 campaign are great signposts to how the next administration will run.
posted by capt.crackpipe on Dec 13, 2000 - 24 comments

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