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Quotes - Dubya the Grammarian (2005)
(Choice instances of Dubya's trademark diction)
The United Nations had declared in more than 10 — I can't remember the exact number of resolutions — that disclose, or disarm, or face serious consequences. I mean, there was a serious international effort to say to Saddam Hussein, you're a threat. And the 9/11 attacks extenuated that threat, as far as I — concerned.
From dictionary.com: ex-ten-u-ate (v.) To lessen or attempt to lessen the magnitude or seriousness of, especially by providing partial excuses. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Dec. 12, 2005
An Iraqi battalion has consumed control of the former American military base, and our forces are now about 40 minutes outside the city.
I assume he meant to use a different word than that, but just got confused, Washington, D.C., Dec. 7, 2005
This is an urban environment. Right over here is Juarez. And people are able to easily come into the border — into Texas, in this part of — in part of the border.
Or something like that, El Paso, Texas, Nov. 29, 2005
We're also increasing the number of agents that will be working in the internal part of the country to find those who've broken the law and bring them to justice.
As opposed to agents working in the external part of the country, El Paso, Texas, Nov. 29, 2005
You're serving the cause of liberty on distant frontiers, and I bring a message from home. Your Commander-in-Chief is proud of you, and so is the American people.
I wish he could have delivered a grammatically correct message from home. Oh well. Osan Air Base, Osan, South Korea, Nov. 19, 2005
I told the President during our discussions that I felt like the ties between our two countries has never been better.
Dubya has singular/plural problems on his state visit to South Korea, Gyeongju, South Korea, Nov. 17, 2005
I also want to thank you very much for your help for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. That meant a lot to our people. It was very generous of you, Mr. President, to do just that.
Just? Gyeongju, South Korea, Nov. 17, 2005
Freedom is the basis of our growing ties to other nations in the region. And in the 21st century, freedom is the destiny of every man, woman, and child from New Zealand to the Korean Peninshula. ...China can play a positive role in the world. We welcome the important role China has assumed as host of the six-party talks aimed at bringing peace to the Korean Peninshula. ...The Korean Peninshula is still caught in the past. An armistice — a truce — freezes the battle lines from a war that has never really come to an end. The pursuit of nukyular weapons threatens to destabilize the region. ...In this new century, China, Japan, and Russia have joined with the United States and South Korea to find a way to help bring peace and freedom to this troubled peninshula. The six-party talks have produced commitments to rid the Korean Peninshula of nukyular weapons. These commitments must be implemented. ...The 21st century will be freedom's century for all Koreans — and one day every citizen of that peninshula will live in dignity and freedom and prosperity at home, and in peace with their neighbors abroad.
Dubya goes on a "peninshula"-powered spree, Kyoto, Japan, Nov. 16, 2005
Look, I think that relations are better than some people want to say they are. As a matter of fact, I know relations between our governments is good.
When asked about relations between the U.S. and South Korean governments, Dubya offers up some textbook singular-plural disagreement, Interview with Korean Broadcasting System, White House, Nov. 8, 2005
See, believe it or not, up here in Washington, there's a lot of programs that simply don't deliver results. And if it doesn't deliver results, we ought to get rid of them.
In addition to the singular/plural mismatch, we also have the proposition that government programs that do not work should just be tossed out rather than repaired. Let's hope he doesn't decide to dispense with Social Security or food stamps... Washington, D.C., Oct. 26, 2005
The questionnaire that she filled out is an important questionnaire. And, obviously, they will address the questions that the senators have in the questionnaire as a result of the answers to the questions in the questionnaire.
In fine form on Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers, Washington, D.C., Oct. 20, 2005
We're going after criminal organizations and coyotes that traffic in human beings. These people are the worst of the worst. They prey on innocent life. They take advantage of people who want to embetter their own lives.
Now, I will grant that this word does exist, but it still sounds unnatural in this instance, akin to the non-existent word "embetterment" that Dubya has used in the past. I did a Google search, too, and found 110,000 hits for "better their lives", but for "embetter their lives"... 28 hits. White House, Oct. 18, 2005
We're going to make sure we make tough choices and set priorities here in Washington, D.C. And we're going to make sure that the money is spent honestly by sending a team of inspector generals down there to review all expenditures. That's what the people of this country expect, and that's exactly what we're going to do. The American people have got a role to play in this effort. And since this storm, our nation's armies of compassions have rallied and have come to the aid of people who are in desperate need of help.
Two enjoyable pluralization problems in succession, Washington, D.C., Sep. 21, 2005
We'll get the debris removed, get the water up and running and get the bridges rebuilt. But what you need to do is develop a blueprint for your own future. We look forward to hearing your vision so we can more better do our job.
Dubya offers a double comparative to show he means business, and adds "hearing your vision" for good measure, Gulfport, Mississippi, Sep. 20, 2005
Listen, I, I, I wanna thank, uhh, leaders of the — in the faith, and uhh — faith-based and community-based community for being here, we've got people who represent thousands of volunteers who are in the midst of helping save lives.
Now, we understand people are scattered out across the country, but we have an obligation to make sure that whether a veteran's benefit or an unemployment benefit or a Social Security benefit gets to these people.
A grammatically challenged commitment to benefits is offered, White House, Sep. 6, 2005
So please give cash money to organizations that are directly involved in helping save lives — save the life who had been affected by Hurricane Katrina.
As tends to happen, he had it right the first time... White House, Sep. 6, 2005
I can't wait to join you in the joy of welcoming neighbors back into neighborhoods, and small businesses up and running, and cutting those ribbons that somebody is creating new jobs.
The sentiment is there, but coherent grammar is not... Poplarville, Mississippi, Sep. 5, 2005
The faith-based groups and the community-based groups throughout this part of the world, and the country for that matter, are responding.
Dubya launches into a new round of repeat offenses in reacting to Hurricane Katrina, Mobile, Alabama, Sep. 2, 2005
I think you can do your job better if you're fit. People think more clearly if you're fit.
Dubya suggests some pretty impressive fitness benefits here, Crawford, Texas, Aug. 13, 2005
The best place for the facts to be done is by somebody who's spending time investigating it.
Suggesting that the facts in the CIA identity leak investigation should be "done" by the investigators, White House, Jul. 18, 2005
I thought it was really interesting that the terrorists chose to attack in London, England, at the same time that the United States and other nations were trying to figure out how to help aleve HIV/AIDS on the continent of Africa, or how to help people that are starving to death, or how to help make sure young girls get educated around the world.
Yes, quite "interesting"... what's more interesting is that this isn't the first time he's used the nonexistent verb "aleve", Dallas, North Carolina, Jul. 15, 2005
I spent some time recently with the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and had an opportunity to express our heartfelt condolences to the people of London, people who lost lives.
Not to make light of a tragedy, but unless Dubya is now capable of speaking with the dead, he couldn't possibly have been able to express condolences to people whose lives were lost, Auchterarder, Scotland, Jul. 7, 2005
I'm sorry my wife isn't here. Yes, I know, most people are sorry — she's not here instead of — she's here — she's not here instead of me. But she is doing great. I'm a lucky man when Laura said, I do. She is a fabulous First Lady, a great mom and a great wife.
Dubya launches into some past/present mayhem, University Park, Pennsylvania, Jun. 14, 2005
I appreciate the President's good advice — and we share the same goals — peace on the Korean Peninshula — and peace throughout the world. We share the same goals. We want our peoples to grow up in a peaceful society that's a prosperous society... I would say the alliance is very strong, Mr. President. And I want to thank you for your, your frank assessment, uhh, and, uhh, of the situation on, on the peninshula. And I'm lookin’ forward to having lunch with you. I'm hungry, like you are... Uhh, no, I, I, I, I – the South Korea and the United States share the same goal, and that is a Korean Peninshula without a nukyular weapon... We're making it very clear to him that the way to join the community of nations is to, uhh, is to listen to, uhh, uhh, China and South Korea and Japan and Russia — and the United States — and that is to give up nukyular weapons. And, uhh, we'll continue to work, to have one voice.
Uhh, Dubya serves up a heaping helping of "peninshula", coupled with a generous helping of "nukyular" in his press availability with President Roh of South Korea. White House, Jun. 10, 2005
In terms of, umm — you know, the — the detainees, we've had thousands of people detained. We've investigated every single complaint against the detainees. It seemed like to me they based some of their decisions on, on the word of, uhh — and the allegations — by people who were held in detention, people who hate America, people that had been trained in some instances to disassemble — that means not tell the truth. And so it was an absurd report. It just is. And, uhh, you know — yes, sir.
The word Dubya is looking for here (and not finding) is "dissemble". That doesn't stop Dubya from acting like he's giving the media pool a vocabulary lesson, though. Answering question about criticism made by Amnesty International regarding the treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay, White House, May 31, 2005
Here's the way the system works. Two folks work, they both contribute to the Social Security system. If one dies early, the — thees, the spouse, the — remaining spouse gets to choose her benefits or his benefits, which are ever greater, but not both. Think about that system.
In case you might think this is an isolated flub, let us assure you it isn't. Greece, New York, May 24, 2005
We know that democracies do not forment terror or invade their neighbors.
Georgia's leaders know that the peaceful resolution of conflict is essential to your integration into the transatlantic community. At the same time, the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia must be respected — the territorial and sovereignty of Georgia must be respected by all nations.
Not sure why he incorrectly corrected an otherwise correctly worded statement, but he's Dubya after all, Tbilisi, Georgia, May 10, 2005
For my own country, the process of becoming a mature, multi-ethnic democracy was lengthy and violent. Our journey from national independence to equal injustice included the enslavement of millions, and a four-year civil war.
And injustice for all... Riga, Latvia, May 7, 2005
[Mississippi Governor] Haley [Barbour] married well, and so did I. I don't know about you, Haley, but my wife has become quite a one-liner, and she can deliver those one-liners.
So does Laura deliver herself along with a bunch of other one-liners? I'm having a hard time figuring this one out. Canton, Mississippi, May 3, 2005
You see, in 1950, there was 15 workers paying into the system for every beneficiary — 16 workers for every beneficiary. Today there is 3.3 workers, fewer of you all paying for people like me, who are going to live longer and have been promised greater benefits.
Was/Were... Is/Are... What's the difference? Canton, Mississippi, May 3, 2005
Uhh, again, I, I repeat to you, our's – our, our aim is to solve this problem diplomatically. And, uhh, you know, like I've said before, all options, of course, are on the table, but the best way to solve this problem diplomatically is to work with four other nations who have all agreed in, in a, in achieving the same goal, and that is a nukyular-free Korean Peninshula. Final question, Hutch. I don't wanna cut into some of this TV shows that are gettin’ ready to air.
I thought about highlighting all the goofy portions of this passage, but I realized nearly the entire thing would end up being highlighted, so I'll let you pick out your favorite bits. White House, Apr. 28, 2005
I look forward to doing something about it with people of both political parties, to permanently solve the Social Security system once and for all, and then we can say we did our duty.
Is the Social Security system a brain teaser? Galveston, Texas, Apr. 26, 2005
Our most abundant energy source is coal. We have enough coal to last for 250 years, yet coal also prevents an environmental challenge.
Look, John Cornyn is a good friend, and we look forward to analyzing and working with legislation that will make — it would hope — put a free press's mind at ease that you're not being denied information you shouldn't see.
Close enough, I guess... Washington, D.C., Apr. 14, 2005
I understand there's a suspicion that we — we're too security conscience.
This isn't the first time Dubya's done this, Washington, D.C., Apr. 14, 2005
I like the idea of encouraging an ownership society, where a mother or father, as a result of hard work, can set aside money, if he or she chooses, in a personal account that he or she can leave to whomever she wants, or ever he wants.
Give him a 'B' for effort: he tried to match up the front and back of the sentence and got pretty close, Parkersburg, West Virginia, Apr. 5, 2005
Government should be an advocate of faith-based and community-based programs, not an impedent to faith-based programs. Government ought to be not a road block.
We have a nonexistent word coupled with some confused grammar, Washington, D.C., Apr. 1, 2005
Vinnie Thomas left home when he was 16, ended up in California struggling with drugs. And guess where he ended up? In prison. He was there for three-and-a-half years. And while he was there, a mentor — I think he said two mentors, but one sticks out in my mind in particular as a mentor. That was a business person, came and mentored Vinnie and gave him an airplane ticket to fly back home, said if you need a problem, here's a house, here's a bed.
That can't be what he meant to say, Washington, D.C., Apr. 1, 2005
I want to wish all the fellow citizens and their families a happy Easter.
Adding "families" seems problematic in this instance, since it makes it seem as if the families aren't citizens themselves, Fort Hood, Texas, Mar. 27, 2005
You see, in 1950, there was 16 to 1 workers — 16 workers for every beneficiary paying into the system.
And in 1950, they didn't match singulars and plurals, either. Tucson, Arizona, Mar. 21, 2005
I'm lookin' forward to meeting these uhh — very brave souls. They've, uhh, committed themselves to a peaceful solution, and hopefully, their loved one'd will not have died in vain. I mean, out of this — hopefully, some good will come out of the evil perpetuated on this family.
Making it sound as if the evil perpetrated on the family is ongoing, Washington, D.C., Mar. 16, 2005
Congresswoman Melissa Hart, thank you for being here. ...Melissa happens to be a board of this community college system.
At least he didn't say she's a "broad of this community college system", although that would have been immensely more entertaining, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Mar. 7, 2005
There's all kinds of ways to serve our country. We've got those wearing the uniform serving our country, whether it be abroad or here at home. But you can serve your country, as well, by feeding the hungry, or finding shelter for the homeless, or helping a low-income person fill out a tax reform.
Granted, this is a mistake that anyone could make, but it's Dubya after all, Westfield, New Jersey, Mar. 4, 2005
We got a problem. And it is plain to see. It is such a problem that in the year 2042, the system is going to be broke. If you're a younger person, you ought to be asking members of Congress and the United States Senate and the President what you intend to do about it. If you see a train wreck coming, you ought to be saying, what are you going to do about it, Mr. Congressman, or Madam Congressman?
Speaking of train wrecks... Detroit, Michigan, Feb. 8, 2005
Younger folks are going to be coming up in a world where either you got to raise taxes dramatically, borrow significant amounts of money, slash government programs, slash benefits in order to make that red in that chart go away.
In case you were hoping for an "or" to go with Dubya's "either", don't hold your breath, Tampa, Florida, Feb. 4, 2005
There has been enormous sacrifices made by some of our citizens in the spread of freedom.
Vintage Dubya grammar, Washington, D.C., Jan. 26, 2005
Surveys show that the vast majority of people do want to participate in democracy. And, ahh, some are feeling intimidated. I urge alls people to vote.
Yes, that's what he said. But don't worry. The White House transcript was thoughtfully printed without the "s". Washington, D.C., Jan. 26, 2005
I fully understand developing a democratic society in the — adhering to the traditions and customs of other nations will be a work in process.
Dubya understands it will be a "work in process", Washington, D.C., Jan. 26, 2005
We've got to make sure education systems actually educate willing workers for the jobs which exist. And that's why I'm here at the community college system today.
I didn't realize the community college system was a single place, Jacksonville, Florida, Jan. 14, 2005
I'm also mindful that it takes a while for democracy to take hold. Witness our own history. We weren't — we certainly were not the perfect democracy and are yet the perfect democracy.
Dubya offers less-than-perfect grammar to emphasize the point, Air Force One, Jan. 14, 2005
I want everybody to vote. And I understand that parts of the Sunni area are being targeted by these killers. And their message is, if you vote, we'll kill you. But their real message is, is that we can't stand democracy. And — you know — if the free world steps back and lets these people have their way, it'll be we can't stand democracy here, and then we can't stand democracy there, and we'll never address the root causes of terror and hatred — which is frustration caused by tyranny.
Dubya outlines the root cause of hatred, and has some fun with shifting pronoun references, White House, Jan. 7, 2005
First of all, we spend about $80 billion on asbestos litigation, and that could end up being $200 billion over time. Secondly, these asbestos suits have bankrupted a lot of companies, and that affects the workers here in Michigan and around the country. Thirdly, those with no major medal impairment now make up the vast majority of claims, while those who are truly sick are denied their day in court.
Introducing a heretofore unknown element to the discussion of asbestos suits, Clinton Township, Michigan, Jan. 7, 2005
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