Michael Douglas’ big speech in the American President

Continuing our theme of great American TV presidents, Michael Douglas’ big speech in “The American President” is a real keeper.


“This is a time for serious people, Bob, and your 15 minutes are up. My name is Andrew Shepherd and I am the President.”

CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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11 Responses to “Michael Douglas’ big speech in the American President”

  1. BeachBumOnStx says:

    John, you and I agree! It’s a shame so many are afraid to stand up to the few bullies with Loud voices that stir up masses with fear and blame, as was said in this very speech! Good public relations is truly a key! Keep on young man!

  2. Indigo says:


  3. Howard Dean screamed yee-haw amplified by a microphone that cut out the sound of the audience. Never underestimate the power of the appearance of strength. I think the American people like strength, and resoluteness – much more than they do whatever your specific policies are. I like it too, though I care about the policies. So yeah, I like these speeches, and I think they matter. PR matters. Always.

  4. Never saw that.

  5. True. Though Martin Sheen had his moments.

  6. Tod Westlake says:

    Fredric March in Seven Days in May gets my vote.

    [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWO-XnAwGrA?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360%5D

  7. zorbear says:

    Well, you’re going to gain weight if you chew the scenery all the time…

  8. Just_AC says:

    I Still think the best portrayal of a man I would like to be My president was Harrison Ford in “Air Force One” when he said “Get off my plane”

  9. Indigo says:

    I think Morgan Freeman makes a better fictional president than Michael Douglas. Douglas is too heavy on the ham (aka “gravitas”).

  10. Sweetie says:

    Correction: It was the first debate where Gore was attacked for being too aggressive, I think. In any case, he dramatically adjusted his routine. In the second debate he was softer than a pillowcase. Gore, ironically due to the robotic meme, displayed a bit of passion and he couldn’t overcome that — despite turning softer and more flaccid than a pillowcase during the second debate.

    The Democratic party adjusted by picking the wooden and empty John Kerry. The problem is that he didn’t have the requisite self-assured smug affability, and had a history of potentially passionate behavior (tossing his medals away and so on). Obama’s passion is obviously scripted, which is as the MSM, the 1%, and public prefers it.

  11. Sweetie says:

    Typical Hollywood schmaltz.

    It’s redundant for senators and the president to be ACLU members, is it not? After all they’re sworn to protect the Constitution when they enter office.

    How did he win an election, then? Did he win by engaging in the dirty tricks he’s condemning?

    The clip makes a few decent points fairly well, but on the whole it’s lightweight.

    For one thing, the public does not like a passionate president. Remember the “Dean scream” and the outrage over the “too-aggressive” Gore’s third debate with Bush? What the public prefers is a slightly smug “above it all” cool head. The public wants to see fake passion and know it for being fake passion. The public does not like real passion any more than it likes the truth about much of anything.

    What the public wants is to be assured that it’s safe to ignore politics, beyond the smug satisfaction one gets from the venerable partisan and ideological sniping.

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