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2018年12月18日 18:31:17 | 作者:丽知识 | 来源:新华社
zsdWSUI62W8MI!,!C)9@nld^SuK[3ZyvVwAnd nor am I afraid that the precious two-party system is in danger. Certainly the Republican Party looked brutally alive a couple of weeks ago -- and I mean both Republican parties. Nor am I afraid that the Democratic Party is old and fat and indolent. After a hundred and fifty years, it has been old for a long time, and it will never be indolent, as long as it looks forward and not back, as long as it commands the allegiance of the young and the hopeful who dream the dreams and see the visions of a better America and a better world.You will hear many sincere and thoughtful people express concern about the continuation of one Party in power for twenty years. I dont belittle this attitude. But change for the sake of change has no absolute merit in itself. If our greatest hazard -- If our greatest hazard ispreservation of the values of Western civilization, in our self-interest alone, if you please, it is the part -- is it the part of wisdom to change for the sake of change to a Party with a splitpersonality, to a leader, whom we all respect, but who has been called upon to minister to a hopeless case of political schizophrenia?)^|h8Yts#N(5fEoGRLa1TB0HK;~qM0p^u*NRA.201202/169736}Download Video: mp4 (118MB) | mp3 (12MB) PRESIDENT OBAMA: Good morning. Mr. Secretary General, on behalf of us all, thank you for convening this meeting to address a task that must be the work of all of us -- supporting the people of Libya as they build a future that is free and democratic and prosperous. And I want to thank President Jalil for his remarks and for all that he and Prime Minister Jibril have done to help Libya reach this moment.To all the heads of state, to all the countries represented here who have done so much over the past several months to ensure this day could come, I want to say thank you, as well.Today, the Libyan people are writing a new chapter in the life of their nation. After four decades of darkness, they can walk the streets, free from a tyrant. They are making their voices heard -- in new newspapers, and on radio and television, in public squares and on personal blogs. They’re launching political parties and civil groups to shape their own destiny and secure their universal rights. And here at the ed Nations, the new flag of a free Libya now flies among the community of nations.Make no mistake -- credit for the liberation of Libya belongs to the people of Libya. It was Libyan men and women -- and children -- who took to the streets in peaceful protest, who faced down the tanks and endured the snipers’ bullets. It was Libyan fighters, often outgunned and outnumbered, who fought pitched battles, town-by-town, block-by-block. It was Libyan activists -- in the underground, in chat rooms, in mosques -- who kept a revolution alive, even after some of the world had given up hope.It was Libyan women and girls who hung flags and smuggled weapons to the front. It was Libyans from countries around the world, including my own, who rushed home to help, even though they, too, risked brutality and death. It was Libyan blood that was spilled and Libya’s sons and daughters who gave their lives. And on that August day -- after all that sacrifice, after 42 long years -- it was Libyans who pushed their dictator from power.At the same time, Libya is a lesson in what the international community can achieve when we stand together as one. I said at the beginning of this process, we cannot and should not intervene every time there is an injustice in the world. Yet it’s also true that there are times where the world could have and should have summoned the will to prevent the killing of innocents on a horrific scale. And we are forever haunted by the atrocities that we did not prevent, and the lives that we did not save. But this time was different. This time, we, through the ed Nations, found the courage and the collective will to act.When the old regime unleashed a campaign of terror, threatening to roll back the democratic tide sweeping the region, we acted as united nations, and we acted swiftly -- broadening sanctions, imposing an arms embargo. The ed States led the effort to pass a historic resolution at the Security Council authorizing "all necessary measures" to protect the Libyan people. And when the civilians of Benghazi were threatened with a massacre, we exercised that authority. Our international coalition stopped the regime in its tracks, and saved countless lives, and gave the Libyan people the time and the space to prevail.Important, too, is how this effort succeeded -- thanks to the leadership and contributions of many countries. The ed States was proud to play a decisive role, especially in the early days, and then in a supporting capacity. But let’s remember that it was the Arab League that appealed for action. It was the world’s most effective alliance, NATO, that’s led a military coalition of nearly 20 nations. It’s our European allies -- especially the ed Kingdom and France and Denmark and Norway -- that conducted the vast majority of air strikes protecting rebels on the ground. It was Arab states who joined the coalition, as equal partners. And it’s been the ed Nations and neighboring countries -- including Tunisia and Egypt -- that have cared for the Libyans in the urgent humanitarian effort that continues today.This is how the international community should work in the 21st century -- more nations bearing the responsibility and the costs of meeting global challenges. In fact, this is the very purpose of this ed Nations. So every nation represented here today can take pride in the innocent lives we saved and in helping Libyans reclaim their country. It was the right thing to do.Now, even as we speak, remnants of the old regime continue to fight. Difficult days are still ahead. But one thing is clear -- the future of Libya is now in the hands of the Libyan people. For just as it was Libyans who tore down the old order, it will be Libyans who build their new nation. And we’ve come here today to say to the people of Libya -- just as the world stood by you in your struggle to be free, we will now stand with you in your struggle to realize the peace and prosperity that freedom can bring.In this effort, you will have a friend and partner in the ed States of America. Today, I can announce that our ambassador is on his way back to Tripoli. And this week, the American flag that was lowered before our embassy was attacked will be raised again, over a re-opened American embassy. We will work closely with the new U.N. Support Mission in Libya and with the nations here today to assist the Libyan people in the hard work ahead.First, and most immediately: security. So long as the Libyan people are being threatened, the NATO-led mission to protect them will continue. And those still holding out must understand -- the old regime is over, and it is time to lay down your arms and join the new Libya. As this happens, the world must also support efforts to secure dangerous weapons -- conventional and otherwise -- and bring fighters under central, civilian control. For without security, democracy and trade and investment cannot flourish.Second: the humanitarian effort. The Transitional National Council has been working quickly to restore water and electricity and food supplies to Tripoli. But for many Libyans, each day is still a struggle -- to recover from their wounds, reunite with their families, and return to their homes. And even after the guns of war fall silent, the ravages of war will continue. So our efforts to assist its victims must continue. In this, the ed States -- the ed Nations will play a key role. And along with our partners, the ed States will do our part to help the hungry and the wounded.Third: a democratic transition that is peaceful, inclusive and just. President Jalil has just reaffirmed the Transitional National Council’s commitment to these principles, and the ed Nations will play a central role in coordinating international support for this effort. We all know what is needed -- a transition that is timely, new laws and a constitution that uphold the rule of law, political parties and a strong civil society, and, for the first time in Libyan history, free and fair elections.True democracy, however, must flow from its citizens. So as Libyans rightly seek justice for past crimes, let it be done in a spirit of reconciliation, and not reprisals and violence. As Libyans draw strength from their faith -- a religion rooted in peace and tolerance -- let there be a rejection of violent extremism, which offers nothing but death and destruction. As Libyans rebuild, let those efforts tap the experience of all those with the skills to contribute, including the many Africans in Libya. And as Libyans forge a society that is truly just, let it enshrine the rights and role of women at all levels of society. For we know that the nations that uphold the human rights of all people, especially their women, are ultimately more successful and more prosperous.Which brings me to the final area where the world must stand with Libya, and that is restoring prosperity. For too long, Libya’s vast riches were stolen and squandered. Now that wealth must serve its rightful owners -- the Libyan people. As sanctions are lifted, as the ed States and the international community unfreeze more Libyan assets, and as the country's oil production is restored, the Libyan people deserve a government that is transparent and accountable. And bound by the Libyan students and entrepreneurs who have forged friendships in the ed States, we intend to build new partnerships to help unleash Libya’s extraordinary potential.Now, none of this will be easy. After decades of iron rule by one man, it will take time to build the institutions needed for a democratic Libya. I’m sure there will be days of frustration; there will be days when progress is slow; there will be days when some begin to wish for the old order and its illusion of stability. And some in the world may ask, can Libya succeed? But if we have learned anything these many months, it is this: Don’t underestimate the aspirations and the will of the Libyan people.So I want to conclude by speaking directly to the people of Libya. Your task may be new, the journey ahead may be fraught with difficulty, but everything you need to build your future aly beats in the heart of your nation. It’s the same courage you summoned on that first February day; the same resilience that brought you back out the next day and the next, even as you lost family and friends; and the same unshakeable determination with which you liberated Benghazi, broke the siege of Misurata, and have fought through the coastal plain and the western mountains.It’s the same unwavering conviction that said, there’s no turning back; our sons and daughters deserve to be free.In the days after Tripoli fell, people rejoiced in the streets and pondered the role ahead, and one of those Libyans said, “We have this chance now to do something good for our country, a chance we have dreamed of for so long.” So, to the Libyan people, this is your chance. And today the world is saying, with one unmistakable voice, we will stand with you as you seize this moment of promise, as you reach for the freedom, the dignity, and the opportunity that you deserve.So, congratulations. And thank you very much. (Applause.)201109/154628President and Mrs. Bush Host Celebration in Honor of Theodore Roosevelt's 150th Birthday MRS. BUSH: Thank you all. Welcome, everyone, to the White House. Thanks to all our very distinguished guests for joining us tonight to celebrate Teddy Roosevelt's 150th birthday.President Roosevelt once said, "I don't think that any family has ever enjoyed the White House more than we have." Certainly, the antics of the Roosevelt children are White House legend. The President's youngest five slid down the stairs on stolen trays, peppered Andrew Jackson's portrait with spitballs, and turned the room where we now sit into a makeshift skating rink. They kept a zoo of pets -- and they took their calico pony, Algonquin, upstairs in the White House elevator to visit their brother when he was sick. (Laughter.) As White House Chief Usher Ike Hoover put it, "A nervous person had no business around the White House in those days." (Laughter.)President Roosevelt encouraged his children, and often joined them for games in the White House attic. But the boyishly exuberant leader had limits to his patience -- as when he caught his son, Quentin, trampling the flower bed with stilts. Upon being ordered out of the landscaping, Quentin complained to his father, "I don't see what good it does me for you to be President." (Laughter.)Here in the East Room, Quentin would burst out of vases to scare tourists like a jack-in-the-box. And the President's oldest child, Alice, would tell visitors that the President beat his children every day -- (laughter) -- news she imparted while draped with her pet snake, Emily Spinach. President Roosevelt must have been relieved when "Princess Alice," as she became known, was finally married in the East Room. As the President once famously commented, he could control Alice, or he could be President of the ed States -- but he couldn't do both. (Laughter.)For more than 100 years, the second floor of the White House was divided into office space for the President and living quarters for the First Family. Roosevelt spent a year working in this arrangement -- but quickly realized that official guests should not be forced to run a gauntlet of children to see the President of the ed States. So, in 1902, President Roosevelt began construction on a new executive office building, which became what we know as the West Wing.When President Roosevelt built the new office space he expanded the family's living quarters into the vacated presidential offices. He created a new area on the east for receiving guests -- maybe you came in that way -- and he removed the grand staircase at the West End of the Cross Hall to enlarge the State Dining Room.This work was overseen by the architectural firm McKim, Mead, and White, which decorated the White House in an elegant neoclassical style. Here in this room, their work is reflected not only in the plaster walls and polished wood floors, but also in the chandeliers above our heads, the gilded benches that are around, flanking the room, the cornices above the draperies, and the light standards bordering the windows -- all of which are original to the 1902 redesign.There have been some additions over the years -- including the portrait of President Roosevelt on my left, which was painted by John Singer Sargent in 1903. But even when the Truman administration gutted the entire White House in a dramatic renovation, the State Floor was rebuilt in the style chosen by McKim, Mead, and White -- and President Teddy Roosevelt.President Roosevelt had at least one regret from the massive project. According to his aide, he grumbled that architect Charles McKim and Mrs. Roosevelt "forced [him] to accept" stone lions' heads on the mantel piece in the State Dining Room.President Roosevelt took six years to emerge victorious in this marital spat. In a 1908 letter to the architects, he demanded that the stone lion heads be re-carved as bison heads, which he explained "made a much more characteristic and American decoration." At tonight's reception, you'll see that American buffalo do adorn our mantel -- in honor of President Roosevelt's firm request.But before we move across the hall for the reception, John Milton Cooper is here to tell you more about President Roosevelt's life and presidency. Professor Cooper is the E. Gordon Fox Professor of American Institutions at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His book, The Warrior and the Priest, is a comparative biography of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson.Professor Cooper. (Applause.)THE PRESIDENT: Thank you, all. Please be seated. Thank you all very much. Job, thank you for the fantastic performance. John Milton Cooper, we appreciate your ing -- I had an interesting piece of history dropped on me tonight by Mrs. Cooper. They met on Capitol Hill, when she was an intern for Senator Prescott S. Bush -- father of President 41, grandfather of President 43. And we welcome you both here. Thank you for coming. (Applause.)And, of course, it's good to see President Roosevelt. (Laughter.) Oftentimes people ask me, do you ever see any of the ghosts of your predecessors here in the White House? I said, "No, I quit drinking." (Laughter and applause.) But we just saw one.Members of the Cabinet, thank you for coming. Former Governor of North Dakota, now the Secretary of Agriculture, is with us. That last song must have made you feel pretty good, Governor.I'm proud to be here with Congressman Pete King. Thanks for coming, Congressman. I appreciate you and your wife coming. The Roosevelt family -- members of the Roosevelt family are here tonight. We welcome you back to the White House. Distinguished guests. Laura and I are thrilled that you came to celebrate the 150th birthday of one of the greatest statesmen in our nation's history -- Theodore Roosevelt. I call him Theodore. (Laughter.) Occasionally call him T.R. (Laughter.)We remember many of our Presidents as leaders made for a unique moment in our history. President Roosevelt, as John said, was a man for all seasons. He was a soldier who won the Medal of Honor, a peacemaker who won the Nobel Prize. He was one of the world's most daring big game hunters, and a leading advocate for conservation of our country's natural resources. He was an intellectual who sometimes several books a day, as John mentioned, and he wrestled here at the White House.He was a man who felt at home on a sprawling ranch in the West. He believed in the importance of a "strenuous life" of exercise. I can relate to that. President Roosevelt also was an advocate for simplifying spelling in America. During his presidency, one member of Congress said that President Roosevelt's efforts would create "confusion and discord" in the English language. I can relate to that. (Laughter.)Nearly 100 years after his presidency, Theodore Roosevelt's legacy still endures here at the White House. Laura gave you an account of the legacy that still endures. He endures in the West Wing, as well. Right across the door of the Oval Office is what was his former office, known as the Roosevelt Room. Above the fireplace hangs a portrait of the 26th President on horseback during the Spanish-American War. That portrait is a reminder -- when I look at it I think about the character and courage that is necessary for any President. For the past eight years, his legacy has been an inspiration to me. It will be an inspiration to the person who replaces me, and it will be an inspiration for all Presidents to come.We thank you for joining us. And please now join us for a reception in the State Dining Room. God bless. (Applause.)200810/54381Our Government must at the same time be both competent and compassionate.我们的政府必须同时兼备能力和同情心这两种东西。We have aly found a high degree of personal liberty, and we are now struggling to enhance equality of opportunity.我们已经实现了高度的个人自由,目前我们正在奋力促进机会均等。Our commitment to human rights must be absolute, our laws fair, our natural beauty preserved;我们对人权的崇奉决无任何条件可言,我们的法律必须绝对公允,我们的自然美景必须加以保护;the powerful must not persecute the weak, and human dignity must be enhanced.强者决不可以欺凌弱者;人的尊严必须提高。We have learned that ;more; is not necessarily ;better,; that even our great Nation has its recognized limits,我们已经懂得,“更多”未必就“更好”。即使我们这样的大国也有其显而易见的局限,and that we can neither answer all questions nor solve all problems.我们既无法回答所有问题,也不可能解决所有问题。We cannot afford to do everything, nor can we afford to lack boldness as we meet the future.我们没有能力包揽一切,但面对未来我们却不能缺乏勇气。So, together, in a spirit of individual sacrifice for the common good, we must simply do our best.所以,我们应当齐心协力,本着为了共同利益而作出个人牺牲的精神,义无反顾地全力以赴。Our Nation can be strong abroad only if it is strong at home.我们的国家只有首先自强才能在国外显示强大。And we know that the best way to enhance freedom in other lands is to demonstrate here that our democratic system is worthy of emulation.我们知道,在别国推进自由的最好方式,莫过于在本国明我们的民主制度确实值得效法。To be true to ourselves, we must be true to others.我们若要忠诚于自己,就必须以诚待人。We will not behave in foreign places so as to violate our rules and standards here at home, for we know that the trust which our Nation earns is essential to our strength.我们在国外各地的行为,决不会违犯我们在国内奉行的规范与准则,因为我们懂得,我国赢得的这种信任,对加强我国的力量乃是不可或缺的。The world itself is now dominated by a new spirit.当前,世界本身也受到一种新精神的驱动。Peoples more numerous and more politically aware are craving and now demanding their place in the sun数量益增、日趋公开觉醒的人民,现在正渴望和要求在阳光下挣得一席之地,not just for the benefit of their own physical condition, but for basic human rights.他们所要求的并非仅只是改善自己的物质条件,而是基本的人权。The passion for freedom is on the rise.争取自由的热情正在高涨。Tapping this new spirit, there can be no nobler nor more ambitious task for America to undertake on this day of a new beginning than to help shape a just and peaceful world that is truly humane.美国既要提倡这种新的精神,那么在这个新开端的日子里所要担负的最为高尚和最为雄心勃勃的任务,就莫过于帮助建立一个公正、和平、真正符合人道的世界。03/437821

Yet, with all this scope of precedent, I now enter upon the same task for the brief constitutional term of four years under great and peculiar difficulty.然而,尽管有这么多可供参考的先例,我现在将在宪法所规定的短短四年任期中来担任这同一任务,却面临着巨大的非同一般的困难。A disruption of the Federal Union, heretofore only menaced, is now formidably attempted.在此以前,分裂联邦只是受到了威胁,而现在却是已出现力图分裂它的可怕行动了。I hold that in contemplation of universal law and of the Constitution the Union of these States is perpetual.从一般法律和我们的宪法来仔细考虑,我坚信,我们各州组成的联邦是永久性的。Perpetuity is implied, if not expressed, in the fundamental law of all national governments.在一切国民政府的根本大法中永久性这一点,虽不一定写明,却是不言而喻的。It is safe to assert that no government proper ever had a provision in its organic law for its own termination.我们完全可以肯定说,没有一个名副其实的政府会在自己的根本法中定出一条,规定自己完结的期限。Continue to execute all the express provisions of our National Constitution, and the Union will endure forever,继续执行我国宪法所明文规定的各项条文,联邦便将永远存在下去it being impossible to destroy it except by some action not provided for in the instrument itself.除了采取并未见之于宪法的行动,谁也不可能毁灭掉联邦。Again: If the ed States be not a government proper, but an association of States in the nature of contract merely, can it, as a contract,还有,就算合众国并不是个名副其实的政府,而只是依靠契约成立的一个各州的联合体,那既有契约的约束,be peaceably unmade by less than all the parties who made it?若非参加这一契约的各方一致同意,我们能说取消就把它取消吗?One party to a contract may violate it—break it, so to speak—but does it not require all to lawfully rescind it?参加订立契约的一方可以违约,或者说毁约;但如果合法地取消这一契约,岂能不需要大家一致同意吗?Descending from these general principles, we find the proposition that in legal contemplation the Union is perpetual confirmed by the history of the Union itself.从这些总原则出发,我们发现,从法学观点来看,联邦具有永久性质的提法,是为联邦自身的历史所实的。The Union is much older than the Constitution.联邦本身比宪法更为早得多。It was formed, in fact, by the Articles of Association in 1774.事实上,它是由1774年,签订的《联合条款》建立的。It was matured and continued by the Declaration of Independence in 1776.到1776年的《独立宣言》才使它进一步成熟和延续下来。It was further matured, and the faith of all the then thirteen States expressly plighted and engaged that it should be perpetual,by the Articles of Confederation in 1778.然后,通过1778年的“邦联条款”使它更臻成熟,当时参加的十三个州便已明确保要使邦联永久存在下去。And finally, in 1787, one of the declared objects for ordaining and establishing the Constitution was ;to form a more perfect Union.;最后,到1787年制订的宪法公开宣布的目的之一,便是“组建一个更为完美的联邦”。But if destruction of the Union by one or by a part only of the States be lawfully possible,但是,如果任何一个州,或几个州也可以合法地把联邦给取消掉,the Union is less perfect than before the Constitution, having lost the vital element of perpetuity.加这个联邦可是比它在宪法制订以前还更不完美了,因为它已失去了它的一个至关重要因素——永久性。It follows from these views that no State upon its own mere motion can lawfully get out of the Union;从这些观点我们可以认定,任何一个州,都不可能仅凭自己动议,便能合法地退出联邦02/436508


Renewing American Competitiveness 重塑美国竞争力RENEWING AMERICAN COMPETITIVENESSJune 16, 2008 | Flint, Michigan It’s great to be at Kettering—a university that is teaching the next generation of leaders and training workers to have the skills they need to advance their own careers and communities.For months, the state of our economy has dominated the headlines—and the news hasn’t been good. The subprime lending debacle has sent the housing market into a tailspin and caused a broader contraction in the credit markets . Over 360,000 jobs have been lost this year, with the unemployment rate registering the biggest one-month jump since February 1986. Incomes have failed to keep pace with the rising costs of health insurance and college, and record oil and food prices have left families struggling just to keep up.Of course, grim economic news is nothing new to Flint. Manufacturing jobs have been leaving here for decades now. The jobs that have replaced them pay less and offer fewer, if any, benefits. Hardworking Americans who could once count on a single paycheck to support their families have not only lost jobs, but their health care and their pensions as well. Worst of all, many have lost confidence in that fundamental American promise that our children will have a better life than we do.So these are challenging times. That’s why I spent last week talking about immediate steps we need to take to provide working Americans with relief. A broad-based, middleclass tax cut, to help offset the rising cost of gas and food. A foreclosure prevention fund, to help stabilize the housing market. A health care plan that lowers costs and gives those without health insurance the same kind of coverage members of Congress have. A commitment to retirement security that stabilizes Social Security and provides workers a means to increase savings. And a plan to crack down on unfair and sometimes deceptive lending in the credit card and housing markets, to help families climb out of crippling debt and stay out of debt in the first place.These steps are all paid for and designed to restore balance and fairness to the American economy after years of Bush Administration policies that tilted the playing field in favor of the wealthy and the well-connected . But the truth is, none of these short-term steps alone will ensure America’s future. Yes, we have to make sure that the economic pie is sliced more fairly, but we also have to make sure that the economic pie is growing. Yes, we need to provide immediate help to families who are struggling in places like Flint, but we also need a serious plan to create new jobs and industry.We can’t simply return to the strategies of the past. For we are living through an age of fundamental economic transformation. Technology has changed the way we live and the way the world does business. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the advance of capitalism have vanquished old challenges to America’s global leadership, but new challenges have emerged, from China and India, Eastern Europe and Brazil. Jobs and industries can move to any country with an Internet connection and willing workers. Michigan’s children will grow up facing competition not just from California or South Carolina, but also from Beijing and Bangalore. A few years ago, I saw a picture of this new reality during a visit to Google’s headquarters in California. Toward the end of my tour, I was brought into a room where a three- dimensional image of the earth rotated on a large flat-panel monitor . Across this image, there were countless lights in different colors. A young engineer explained that the lights represented all of the Internet searches taking place across the world, and each color represented a different language. The image was mesmerizing —a picture of a world where old boundaries are disappearing; a world where communication, connection, and competition can come from anywhere.There are some who believe that we must try to turn back the clock on this new world; that the only chance to maintain our living standards is to build a fortress around America; to stop trading with other countries, shut down immigration, and rely on old industries. I disagree. Not only is it impossible to turn back the tide of globalization, but efforts to do so can make us worse off .08/81864

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you for the warm welcome. And Laura and I are thrilled to be here at Kearny School. We have come because this is one of the really fine schools in the city of Philadelphia. We bring greetings from the Nation's Capital, but more importantly, we bring appreciation for those who are working so hard to make sure that every child can learn. You know, seven years ago today, I had the honor of signing a bill that forever changed America's school systems. It was called the No Child Left Behind Act. I firmly believe that thanks to this law, more students are learning, an achievement gap is closing. And on this anniversary, I have come to talk about why we need to keep the law strong. If you find a piece of legislation that is working, it is important to make sure the underpinnings of that law remain strong. I do want to thank Laura for joining me. She has been an awesome wife and a great First Lady. (Applause.) Our journey together in Washington has been fantastic, and I thank her very much for her love. I am proud to be here with Arlene Ackerman. Thank you for your introduction, Arlene, and thank you for being -- (applause.) Arlene is a reform-minded leader. And by that, I mean you have a Superintendent here who is willing to challenge the status quo if the status quo is unacceptable. Sometimes that's hard in public life. You see the status quo, and people are saying, oh, let's just leave it the way it is; it's too hard to change. And you have a Superintendent here that says, if we're finding failure we're going to change. And I want to thank you for taking on this important assignment. I'm proud to be here with my buddy. I guess it's okay to call the Secretary of Education here "buddy." That means friend. And she has been our friend for a long time. She is a great Secretary of Education. And, Margaret, I want to thank you for being here. (Applause.) I want to thank the senior Senator -- I guess it's okay to call you "senior" -- Arlen Specter. He is a good friend, and he cares a lot about the state of Pennsylvania and the education systems in the state. So thank you for coming, my friend. (Applause.) Jerry Zahorchak is with us, the Pennsylvania Department of Education Secretary. Jerry, thank you for being here, and thank you for serving. I want to thank all the state and local officials, particularly the state representative from this district has kindly come by to say hello and participate in a roundtable we just had. Roy Romer, former governor of Colorado, and an education reformer, has just spoken. I want to thank Roy. He happens to be the chairman of Strong American Schools. It's got a nice ring to it, doesn't it? Strong American Schools. That means schools that actually teach people how to , write, and add and subtract. At least that's my definition of strong American schools. I want to thank very much the Reverend Al Sharpton. Now, some of you are probably about to fall out of your chair -- (laughter) -- when you know that Al and I have found common ground. And by the way, it's on an important issue. See, he cares just as much as I care about making sure every child learns to , write, and add and subtract. And I want to thank you for your leadership on this issue, and I appreciate you -- (applause.) I want to thank the teachers who work here. I particularly want to thank Principal Spagnola for her leadership. (Applause.) And the thing about educators -- first of all, every good school has got a principal who is a good principal. That's generally the key ingredient to success, somebody who can set high standards and motivate. And this principal can do just that. And for the teachers, thank you for taking on a noble profession. Laura and I are proud to report that one of our daughters is a teacher, and it makes us feel just incredibly great to know that we've raised a child who is willing to take on an important task of teaching a child to be able to have the skills necessary to succeed in life. There are a lot of reformers here, and I welcome the reformers. These are people from society who say, I want to help the school system succeed. When I got off Air Force One today, I met Adam Bruckner. I mentioned to some kids, have you ever heard of Adam Bruckner? And they said, "You're talking about Mr. Adam." I said, that's who I'm talking about. He is volunteer. He's a mentor. He happens to be a professional soccer coach, which means he knows how to play soccer, and he is willing to lend his skills, and more importantly, his heart, to teach a child the beauty of being a sports person, and the lessons of life that come from good competition. And so I want to thank you very much, Adam, for being here, and representing all the folks who volunteer at this program. (Applause.) At the end of the presidency, you get to do a lot of "lasts." I don't know if you saw on TV, but I pardoned my last Thanksgiving turkey. (Laughter.) This is my last policy speech. As President of the ed States, this is the last policy address I will give. What makes it interesting is that it's the same subject of my first policy address as President of the ed States, which is education and education reform. I hope you can tell that education is dear to my heart. I care a lot about whether or not our children can learn to , write, and add and subtract. When I was a governor of Texas, I didn't like it one bit when I'd go to schools in my state and realize that children were not learning so they could realize their God-given potential. I didn't like it because I knew the future of our society depended upon a good, sound education. I was sharing this story with people that Laura and I just met with, and at the time I went to a high school in my state, one of our big city high schools. And I said, thanks for teaching -- I met this teacher. I think his name is Brown, if I'm not mistaken. SECRETARY SPELLINGS: Nelson Brown. THE PRESIDENT: Nelson Brown. And he taught geography and history, if I'm not mistaken. I said, "How is it going, Mr. Brown?" He said, "It's going lousy." I said, "Why?" He said, "Because my kids cannot and they're in high school." You see, the system was just satisfied with just shuffling kids through -- if you're 14 you're supposed to be here, if you're 16 you're supposed to be there. Rarely was the question asked: Can you ? Or can you write? Or can you add and can you subtract? And so we decided to do something about it. We said such a system is unacceptable to the future of our state. And that's the spirit we brought to Washington, D.C. It's unacceptable to our country that vulnerable children slip through the cracks. And by the way, guess who generally those children are? They happen to be inner-city kids, or children whose parents don't speak English as a first language. They're the easiest children to forget about. We saw a culture of low expectations. You know what happens when you have low expectations? You get lousy results. And when you get lousy results, you have people who say, there's no future for me in this country. And so we decided to do something about it. We accepted the responsibility of the office to which I had been elected. It starts with this concept: Every child can learn. We believe that it is important to have a high quality education if one is going to succeed in the 21st century. It's no longer acceptable to be cranking people out of the school system and saying, okay, just go -- you know, you can make a living just through manual labor alone. That's going to happen for some, but it's not the future of America, if we want to be a competitive nation as we head into the 21st century. We believe that every child has dignity and worth. But it wasn't just me who believed that. Fortunately, when we got to Washington, a lot of other people believed it -- Democrats and Republicans. I know there's a lot of talk about how Washington is divided, and it has been at times -- at times. And it can get awfully ugly in Washington. But, nevertheless, if you look at the history over the past eight years, there have been moments where we have come together. And the No Child Left Behind Act is one such moment. 01/60744


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