Al Gore: ‘We Need to Have an American Spring’
10:44 AM, Aug 4, 2011 • By DANIEL HALPER
The other night on Current TV, former vice president Al Gore said to the host of Countdown with Keith Olbermann that America needs to work toward the “reinvigoration of democracy.”
“We need to have an American spring,” Gore said. “You know, the Arab Spring—the nonviolent part of it isn’t finished yet—but we need to have an American Spring, a kind of an American Tahrir Square. Non-violent change, where people from the grassroots get involved again.”
“I want to tell you, Keith, this country is in trouble,” Gore explained to the sympathetic Olbermann. “Our democracy has been withering on the vine, it really has been. This has been going on for some time. But this is not an event that can be taken lately. I know it’s difficult to imagine that the people who care about the values that this country was based on will rise up and get much more involved in the democratic process, but that is exactly what we need and that is the only thing that can get our country back on the right track. ”
It’s not clear what Gore was trying to say here. Was the former vice president of the United States actually suggesting that Barack Obama is like an Arab tyrant who is responsible for the murder of thousands of his own citizens (just like Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad)? If so, that’s a scurrilous claim. Sure, the president might be responsible for a bad economy, an overreaching health care plan, a weak American foreign policy, and countless other poor policy decisions, but he was elected by a fair and democratic process.
Many of the protesters in the Arab Spring are hoping to work toward a system closer to America’s than what they currently have. By comparing the plight of liberal activists to the protesters in Tahrir, Gore is belittling the seriousness of those who are truly repressed. The American system is fair and democratic; Syria’s and Egypt’s are not.
And if you think Gore might have been encouraging the Tea Party to be more active, guess again. “Not in the Tea Party style,” the former vice president said, before going on a long rant about the Tea Party.
Here are the words Gore had for the Tea Party:
And here's video of Gore's performance: