Dennis Kucinich's speech this afternoon in Denver was really amazing in the way it energized his audience. By the time he got to the rhetorical flourish "Up with..." he had set the house on fire and everyone was on their feet screaming, pumping-it-up and waving signs.
The convention program directors, apparently too focused on their schedule and their two-way radio conversations to recognize the miracle moment, hurried the next speaker out to the podium. The state comptroller from California began his speech immediately, expecting the crowd to settle, but the audience refused to relent. They remained on their feet screaming, stamping and pumping-up Kucinich several moments into the innocuous drone of the poor comptroller who just kept mumbling insipidly onward.
It's Election Day 2008. We Democrats are giving America a wake-up call. Wake up, America. In 2001, the oil companies, the war contractors and the neo-con artists seized the economy and have added 4 trillion dollars of unproductive spending to the national debt. We now pay four times more for defense, three times more for gasoline and home heating oil and twice what we paid for health care.
Millions of Americans have lost their jobs, their homes, their health care, their pensions. Trillions of dollars for an unnecessary war paid with borrowed money. Tens of billions of dollars in cash and weapons disappeared into thin air, at the cost of the lives of our troops and innocent Iraqis, while all the president's oilmen are maneuvering to grab Iraq's oil.
Borrowed money to bomb bridges in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. No money to rebuild bridges in America. Money to start a hot war with Iran. Now we have another cold war with Russia, while the American economy has become a game of Russian roulette.
If there was an Olympics for misleading, mismanaging and misappropriating, this administration would take the gold. World records for violations of national and international laws. They want another four-year term to continue to alienate our allies, spend our children's inheritance and hollow out our economy.
We can't afford another Republican administration. Wake up, America. The insurance companies took over health care. Wake up, America. The pharmaceutical companies took over drug pricing.
Wake up, America. The speculators took over Wall Street. Wake up, America. They want to take your Social Security. Wake up, America. Multinational corporations took over our trade policies, factories are closing, good paying jobs lost.
Wake up, America. We went into Iraq for oil. The oil companies want more. War against Iran will mean $10-a-gallon gasoline. The oil administration wants to drill more, into your wallet. Wake up, America. Weapons contractors want more. An Iran war will cost 5 to 10 trillion dollars.
This administration can tap our phones. They can't tap our creative spirit. They can open our mail. They can't open economic opportunities. They can track our every move. They lost track of the economy while the cost of food, gasoline and electricity skyrockets. They skillfully played our post-9/11 fears and allowed the few to profit at the expense of the many. Every day we get the color orange, while the oil companies, the insurance companies, the speculators, the war contractors get the color green.
Wake up, America. This is not a call for you to take a new direction from right to left. This is call for you to go from down to up. Up with the rights of workers. Up with wages. Up with fair trade. Up with creating millions of good paying jobs, rebuilding our bridges, ports and water systems. Up with creating millions of sustainable energy jobs to lower the cost of energy, lower carbon emissions and protect the environment.
Up with health care for all. Up with education for all. Up with home ownership. Up with guaranteed retirement benefits. Up with peace. Up with prosperity. Up with the Democratic Party. Up with Obama-Biden.
Wake up, America. Wake up, America. Wake up, America.
SOURCE 2008 Democratic National Convention Committee Democratic National Convention Press Office, +1-720-362-2006
What a hard act to follow.
2008 Democratic National Convention: Remarks as Prepared for Delivery by Dennis Kucinich