The Al Smith Dinner: I Have To Give This One To Romney

Having watched the Al Smith dinner last night, I have to cast my vote with Mitt Romney as the better delivery and jokes though President Obama had some good material as well. You decide, but let’s put ideology to side and for once just focused on what matters: the jokes. While we are not selecting the comedian in chief, at least we have a common measure of success in a roast.

Below is President Obama’s remarks.

Of course, neither man wrote these jokes but, judging on the raw material, I am afraid that I have to give it solidly to Romney on this one. What do you think?

91 thoughts on “The Al Smith Dinner: I Have To Give This One To Romney

  1. “Defeat Romney, Without Illusions about Obama
    Advice to progressives in swing states, vote for reelection”

    by Daniel Ellsberg

    “It’s not merely understandable, it’s entirely appropriate to be enraged at Barack Obama. As I am. He has often acted outrageously, not merely timidly or “disappointingly.” If impeachment were politically imaginable on constitutional grounds, he’s earned it (like George W. Bush, and many of his predecessors!) It is entirely human to want to punish him, not to “reward” him with another term or a vote that might be taken to express trust, hope or approval.

    But rage is not generally conducive to clear thinking. And it often gets worked out against innocent victims, as would be the case here domestically, if refusals to vote for him resulted in Romney’s taking key battleground states that decide the outcome of this election.

    To punish Obama in this particular way, on Election Day — by depriving him of votes in swing states and hence of office in favor of Romney and Ryan — would punish most of all the poor and marginal in society, and workers and middle class as well: not only in the U.S. but worldwide in terms of the economy (I believe the Republicans could still convert this recession to a Great Depression), the environment and climate change. It could well lead to war with Iran (which Obama has been creditably resisting, against pressure from within his own party). And it would spell, via Supreme Court appointments, the end of Roe v. Wade and of the occasional five to four decisions in favor of the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

    The reelection of Barack Obama, in itself, is not going to bring serious progressive change, end militarism and empire, or restore the Constitution and the rule of law. That’s for us and the rest of the people to bring about after this election and in the rest of our lives — through organizing, building movements and agitating.

    In the eight to twelve close-fought states — especially Florida, Ohio, and Virginia, but also Colorado, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin — for any progressive to encourage fellow progressives and others in those states to vote for a third-party candidate is, I would say, to be complicit in facilitating the election of Romney and Ryan, with all its consequences.

    To think of that as urging people in swing states to “vote their conscience” is, I believe, dangerously misleading advice. I would say to a progressive that if your conscience tells you on Election Day to vote for someone other than Obama in a battleground state, you need a second opinion. Your conscience is giving you bad counsel.

    I often quote a line by Thoreau that had great impact for me: “Cast your whole vote: not a strip of paper merely, but your whole influence.” He was referring, in that essay, to civil disobedience, or as he titled it himself, “Resistance to Civil Authority.”

    It still means that to me. But this is a year when for people who think like me — and who, unlike me, live in battleground states — casting a strip of paper is also important. Using your whole influence this month to get others to do that, to best effect, is even more important.

    That means for progressives in the next couple of weeks — in addition to the rallies, demonstrations, petitions, lobbying (largely against policies or prospective policies of President Obama, including austerity budgeting next month), movement-building and civil disobedience that are needed all year round and every year — using one’s voice and one’s e-mails and op-eds and social media to encourage citizens in swing states to vote against a Romney victory by voting for the only real alternative, Barack Obama.”

  2. President Obama won hands-down with his smile, delivery & self-deprecating remarks. RMoney was so very much the bully, mean-spirited, hateful & condescending to the President. RMoney can’t poke fun at himself because he believes he is the fulfillment of the Mormon Prophesy and that he is Entitled — to everything!

  3. Otteray,

    John Kerry: Darrell Issa’s Release Of Raw Libya Cables ‘Irresponsible And Inexcusable’
    By Paige Lavender
    The Huffington Post
    Posted: 10/20/20

    Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) criticized House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R- Calif.) for releasing 166 pages of “sensitive but unclassified” State Department cables that contained the names of Libyans working within the United States.

    “This is irresponsible and inexcusable, and perhaps worst of all it was entirely avoidable,” Kerry said. “It is profoundly against America’s interests in a difficult region.”

    The Obama administration has also criticized Issa for leaking the documents, which relate to the September attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and four others.

    Administration officials told Foreign Policy magazine the leak, along with Issa’s failure to redact the names of Libyan civilians and local leaders mentioned in the cables, could have “unintended consequences.”

    “This does damage to the individuals because they are named, danger to security cooperation because these are militias and groups that we work with and that is now well known, and danger to the investigation, because these people could help us down the road,” an administration official said.

  4. What’s funny is that we can be so distracted when we’re facing extinction. We must be the sorriest lifeform anywhere! We don’t even deserve to be alive the way we ignore every sign that things are going terribly out of control and we’d rather make money! Yeah, we’re a real riot – especially when it’s too hot grow food, or the electrical grid fails, or (fill in your favorite scenario of doom – because they’re probably all going to come true sooner than we think).

    Some presidential debates – they’re trying to outdo each other to keep polluting and ruining the environment. Good plan guys! Geez, which clown should we vote for? It’s so close!

    And don’t forget to vote! Like that will change anything for the better. There’s a good joke for you.

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