Monday, December 15

2008 In Quotes

It's perhaps a little early to wa poetic about the year that is (and soon will be was), but according to "Yale Book of Quotations" edited by Fred Shapiro the top political quotes for 2008 are:

1."I can see Russia from my house!"
Comedian Tina Fey, impersonating Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live, broadcast Sept. 13

2. "All of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years."
Palin, responding to a request by CBS anchor Katie Couric to name the newspapers or magazines she reads, broadcast Oct. 1

3. "We have sort of become a nation of whiners."
Former Sen. Phil Gramm, an economic adviser to Sen. John McCain, quoted in The Washington Times, July 10

4. "It's not based on any particular data point, we just wanted to choose a really large number."
Treasury Department spokeswoman explaining how the $700 billion number was chosen for the initial bailout, quoted on Sept. 23

5. "The fundamentals of America's economy are strong."
John McCain, in an interview with Bloomberg TV, April 17

6. "Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency."
The Treasury Department's proposed Emergency Economic Stabilization Act, September 2008

7. "Maybe 100."
John McCain, discussing in a town hall meeting in Derry, N.H., how many years U.S. troops could remain in Iraq, Jan. 3

8. "I'll see you at the debates, bitches."
Paris Hilton in a video responding to a McCain television ad, August 2008

9. "Barack, he's talking down to black people. ... I want to cut his ... off."
The Rev. Jesse Jackson, overheard over a live microphone before a Fox News interview, July 6

10. (tie) "Cash for trash."
Paul Krugman discussing the financial bailout, New York Times, Sept. 22.

10. (tie) "There are no atheists in foxholes and there are no libertarians in financial crises."
Krugman, in an interview with Bill Maher on HBO's Real Time, broadcast Sept. 19

10. (tie) "Anyone who says we're in a recession, or heading into one — especially the worst one since the Great Depression — is making up his own private definition of 'recession.'"
Commentator Donald Luskin, the day before Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, The Washington Post, Sept. 14

I would add:

"If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer." -- Barack Obama, in victory speech in US presidential election in home state of Chicago, November 4, 2008.

And these three bailout related quotes:

"If money isn't loosened up, this sucker could go down." -- US president George Bush as political wrangling threatens to sink $700 billion Wall Street bailout package.

"Our entire economy is in danger." -- US president George Bush in TV appeal for support for plan to avert financial meltdown.

"Don't blow it up." -- US treasury secretary Henry Paulson on bended knee, to Democratic Party House speaker Nancy Pelosi, pleading for her to back $700bn Wall Street bailout.

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