Ingen motsättning mellan säkerhet och ideal

Man skulle kunna gå igenom rad för rad av Barack Obamas installationstal och tolka nyanserna, spåra historiska referenser och diskutera ordvalen. Några av de bästa passagerna, som även bestått provet av ett antal lyssningar av talet i mp3-spelaren, var:

’In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted – for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things – some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.’

Arbetslinjen, formulerad av Obama, skulle man kanske kunna säga.

’As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our founding fathers … our found fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience’s sake.’

Den viktigaste markeringen mot George W Bush i Obamas tal var nog denna att det inte finns någon motsättning mellan bevarad säkerhet och bevarade ideal. En värdefull insikt, för övrigt, även i den slentrianmässiga övervakningens tid. Förhoppningsvis kan den nya inställningen i Washington, även om avsikter uttryckta i ett tal inte ska övervärderas i första skedet och parallellen är lite ansträngd, påverka även ledande politiker i Sverige – både inom alliansen och socialdemokratin – som slirat i integritetsfrågorna.

’We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions – that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.’

Här dök det inarbetade Yes We Can-temat upp i ny form. Retoriskt var det här en av höjdpunkterna, också när det gäller själva framförandet; rytmen och betoningarna.

Och så slutet förstås:

’So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America’s birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people: ’Let it be told to the future world … that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive…that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet (it).’

America, in the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.’

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