Posted by Curt on 19 May, 2006 at 4:56 pm. 2 comments already!


Rich Lowry gives us a play by play of John McCain’s commencement speech at New School. A perfect example of how our Communist professors are brainwashing our kids:

Never too early to start booing John McCain At New School commencement. Bob Kerrey just gave introductory remarks, mostly devoted to defending his decision to invite John McCain. At the mention of the senator’s name there are loud boos and a smattering of applause. McCain, sitting behind Kerrey with various poo-bahs, laughs. When Kerrey mentions McCain’s address at Liberty University, someone yells something about that being Jerry Falwell’s university (thanks for the information!). Kerrey gets good applause when he says the word ?liberal? should mean open-mindedness and individual freedom. But he salutes those who have protested McCain’s speech as a sign of vigorous debate. He notes that McCain said, in defending his Liberty talk, that no one was objecting to him speaking at liberal The New School: ?Well, John, at least you solved that problem.? McCain throws head back in laughter (he’s good at demonstrating good nature in such circumstances). Finishes by saluting McCain and the protestors again.

McCain speaking, People holding up orange, ?McCain: our commencement is not your platform? signs. A few anti-McCain banners being held in the aisles. At the beginning of his remarks, McCain thanks the prior student for the Cliff Note’s version of his speech. A little laughter. Some students standing with their backs to him in front, but vast majority sitting and listening.

McCain opens with a long riff about the arrogance of youth and how he learned humility as he grew older. He says we have ?a noisy contentious society,? and that we love ?self-expression,? but ?that passion sometimes overwhelms our civility.? (That’s you standing with your backs to him in front!) He says he was young he was ?quite infatuated with self-expression? and thought he was ?so much more eloquent and wiser than anyone I knew.? Hard to imagine an opening better suited to, through the subtle art of self-deprecation, make the protestors look like asses.

McCain delivers a beautiful prose poem to America, national service, and civil debate (congrats Mark Salter, as ever), and gets derided for it, of course.

?I supported the war in Iraq.? Boos. Explains the war was not for cheap oil. A little heckling: ?You’re full of it!? Says he thought the ?country’s interest and values demanded? the war. Someone shouts: ?Wrongly!? Someone else: ?More poetry!? (A reference to lines from Yeats McCain had quoted earlier.)

He says ?whether [the war] was necessary or not…we all should shed a tear? for those who have sacrificed in it. Some hissing.


He eventually enters into a Bushian rift: ?All people share the desire to be free?; ?human rights are above the state and beyond history?; we are ?insisting that all people have the right to be free.? Someone shouts: ?We’re graduating, not voting!? Lots of derisive shouts and laughter and applause.

As McCain continues with a personal story, a student shouts: ?It’s about my life, not yours.? McCain:

?When I was a young man, I thought glory was the highest value…? Groans from the students. ?It’s not about you!? ?Sit down!?

McCain circles back around to the theme of civility: ?We are not enemies, we are compatriots…? Boos, shouts. McCain: It ?should remain an argument among friends?; we should be ?respectful of the goodness in each other.? Literally one person applauds.

McCain goes on to tell his story about his reconciliation with an opponent of the Vietnam War: ?I had a friend once…? Groans, boos.

He talks about forgiving his friend who dissented from the war. Hostile rumblings from the students.

He says after the reconciliation, he and his friend ?worked together for shared ideals.? A shout: ?We don’t share your ideals!? As McCain closes there is a mix of boos and applause, and a few people even stand to clap.

Rich summarizes the speech and the students conduct:

Well, that was a pretty shameful performance by The New School student body, but I suppose it could have been worse. Kerrey must be a little embarrassed. He gets up: ?For those of you who listened to two speeches…one from McCain…the other from [the student], you saw two acts of bravery.? (Actually, it is very bad form to directly attack another speaker in such a forum?but I guess Kerrey feels he can only go so far in defending civility.) Kerrey says, in contrast, that in heckling from the audience, there is ?no bravery required.? He gets pretty good applause. Asks if when students get older and someone is heckling, laughing or booing them, will they stand up for their beliefs? ?Will you stand and say unpopular things?? A loud shout from the back: ?You are a war criminal!?

Another: ?Let’s graduate!?

And makes some points:

1) The solipsism of the student Left is incredible. That a war hero would come to talk to you about what he’s learned in life, and your reaction would be to shout??it’s about me!? Amazing.

2) The forfeit of foreign-policy idealism on the left at the moment is near total. McCain got some applause when he said we should be doing more in Darfur?maybe because that’s a cause that has an anti-Bush tinge. But his defense of American values and spreading them to the world was met with indifference or hostility.

3) McCain gets credit for going to such a hostile forum. He’s one of the best on the right in pulling off such things, of course. In sheer political terms, one of his challenges is to get hated by the right people and shake his reputation as the media’s and liberals’ favorite Republican. Getting heckled by left-wingers helps.

A perfect example of the Socialist/Liberal mindset at work. Freedom of speech is only meant for those we agree with, if I don’t then I will shout you down. Plus the what can YOU do for ME philosophy? They want to sit on their asses while expecting the government to take care of them.

I disagree with McCain on a great many things but even if it was Howard Dean giving a speech I would still allow him to speak in peace. It’s called civil discourse, something the left has all but abandoned.

All I can say is thank god for this line from the audience:

?’We’re graduating, not voting!’?

May it forever be so.

Other’s Blogging:

All I can say is thank god for this line from the audience:

?’We’re graduating, not voting!’?

May it forever be so.

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