During U.N. Speech, President Obama Takes Jab at Russian President Vladimir Putin

Obama-PutinWhile he never addressed him directly, or even mentioned his name, it was clear who President Obama took a jab at during his speech at the UN General Assembly when he said, “Some may disagree, but I believe America is exceptional.”

But that wasn’t all the president said.  He continued:

“In part because we have shown a willingness through the sacrifice of blood and treasure to stand up not only for our own narrow self-interests, but for the interests of all.  I must be honest though, we’re far more likely to invest our energy in those countries that want to work with us, that invest in their people instead of a corrupt few, that embrace a vision of society where everyone can contribute, men and women, Shia or Sunni Muslim, Christian or Jew.”

His opening line was a direct poke at the op-ed Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote earlier this month that was embraced by some Republicans as “sticking it to Obama.”  In it, Putin wrote that it’s, “extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional” — implying that Americans see our country as something special.

Which I am unapologetic in thinking that it is.  For all of our flaws (and we have many) this is still one of the greatest nations on earth. We just need to keep Republicans from turning it into a homophobic theocracy cloaked in the veil of a “Constitutional America.”

Obama’s comments might not have been extraordinary, and they probably flew over the head of many people who weren’t aware of Putin’s op-ed.  But make no mistake about it — this was clearly his subtle (yet effective) response back to the Russian president’s attempt to scold our country and our citizens.

Which is somewhat ironic coming from Mr. Putin, a man who seems unable to have a photo taken of him where he’s not shirtless riding (or killing) some sort of animal.  And he wants to scold us and tell us we’re not exceptional?  Give me a break.

Now I’m sure Putin couldn’t really care less about Obama’s remarks anymore than Obama cared about his.  However, I did enjoy the fact that, while he couldn’t really write a similar op-ed himself, President Obama didn’t let Putin’s remarks slide.  He made it a point to address the key point of the op-ed that many Americans found most offensive.

So, while it wasn’t the equivalent of giving Putin the middle finger, it was still our president’s way of saying, ‘I know what you said, and you can kiss my exceptional American…’

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Republicans are traitors

    Anyone that believes that this country is the greatest on earth, has their head so far up their ass that all they see is behind their eye balls. This country used to be great, but now its an oppressive shit hole, where the poor are vilified, christian nut bags run wild stripping people of basic human rights. We have one of the worst rankings in regards to education, income equality, upward social mobility, healthcare access, the list goes on. the only thing we are number 1 is gun violence. and we are top 5 for children mortality rates. Only a complete asshole could stand there and claim this country is great. oh yea, don’t forget how we favor the wealthy and strap our kids with student loan debt for the rest of their lives. this country blows ass. Thanx to the crooked politicians from both party’s (admittedly more so republicans) and our now crooked supreme court! Anyone that can sit there with a straight face and say this country is great is fucking mentally ill or lives a privileged life. America is great if you rich, for the rest of us we are nothing more than slaves! Slaves that make 7.25 an hour, work 40-50 hours a week, have zero healthcare and zero vacation, and have politicians lining their pockets with our money and basically our lives. Anyone that thinks this country is great, your the reason it has gotten to be so bad!!

    • dancerboots

      “But it sure use to be”. Will McAvoy “The Newsroom”
      Your comment is close to the same words he spoke when ask “What makes America the greatest country in the world?”
      ..

    • Bob Bloomquist

      If you know of a greater country, I’d sure like to know which one it is. Maybe you would like to go live there.

      • Lee Hoffman

        CANADA,NETHERLANDS HOLLAND,NORWAY,BELGIUM.I WOULD IF THIS COUNTRY COULD GET ME A PASSPORT IN MY LIFETMIE!

      • Bob Bloomquist

        Canada, too cold, Netherlands, too crowded, Norway, too cold, Belgium, too crowded, poor economy. You have never been to any of these countries, but you think they are better. Good luck.

      • Lee Hoffman

        Im from Chicago ..too cold please I have family in Norway!

      • Bob Bloomquist

        41 there right now. Enjoy! I’m sure they would welcome you back.

      • Lee Hoffman

        You know BOB belive it or not this isn’t about You! your probably a fine guy! I just disagree with a culture that stands on a principle that no longer exists. Maybe in the 40’s 50,s but now ????

      • Bob Bloomquist

        Never said this is about me. It’s about you. If you dont like it here, why don’t you leave?

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        Most of Canada is no colder than New York.

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        America to communist (liberal)

      • Lee Hoffman

        I grew up in a military home,my father,my grandfather, my brother in law my nephew ,my cousin and myself have all served. Do you really think I don’t understand? no my friend isnt that a tired mantra that you spew,”Go live somewhere else” from all the so called “patriots”

      • Bob Bloomquist

        My father, my Mother, 8 uncles, my grandfather, my grand-father’s brothers, my niece, my nephew, numerous cousins, and I have served. Viet Nam. Yes, I think you don’t understand. If you don’t like this country, move somewhere else.

      • raggedcompany

        If you don’t like this country, try helping to make it a better one.
        Fixed that for you.

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        In order to fix the country you would have to ship all the liberals to another country. Since you can’t do that…….it’s not possible to save America.

      • raggedcompany

        In order to fix this country, everyone on BOTH sides needs to grow the hell up and learn to work together. But that said, you’re probably right — it’s not possible.

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        You can’t reason with communists (liberals) it’s better to let it collapse. That’s the point were at now….A destroyed econony…a mountain of debt….It’s over. This is what liberalism eventually brings. People have moved on to more productive and less liberal places…..perhaps you can move there to get a job that used to exist in America.

      • gemma liar

        funny how needledicks such as GUY weren’t around vocally when GW bush took a SURPLUS and a balanced budget and sent us over the cliff financially or when SAINT REAGAN started the MASS exodus of American jobs being outsourced overseas,,,,,,,,I guess GUY was eating coconuts in Kingston with his “yahh mann ” brethren…. LETS ALL HEAR IT FOR NUGATORY GUYYYYYYYY

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        Boo hoo do you even know what year it is? Do you know who’s president? NO you seem to be stuck in the past while the countriy becomes a welfare state…..typical liberal fool. You fell for it and now your left holding the bag.

      • gemma liar

        “holding the bag”……Hmmmm: allow me to elucidate you a tad more- My business – as a self employed CHEF ( contracting south FLA- mostly Broward Co- adult strip clubs) is NOW ( and usually) 100% cash revenues. Its not uncommon for me to have over the years clear over 120 K ( clear; no kid support,,no hounding ex ,,,no debt) so my finances are quite in order. HOLDING THE BAG? I want MORE!!!! yaaay meeeeeeeeeeeeee

      • gemma liar

        yeah baby! we can keep all the white aging regressive pseudo Christian trash here and watch them bitch about blacks/women/latinos/Asians/gays/ young/ and old,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, guy is a typical white trash scum who probably thinks Reagan was a great president and Clinton should still be impeached. guy tithes at a TAX FREE house of superstition( SEE: church) with his other bowling league beer drinking nascar watching FOX “news” sucking scum. hey guy– hope U enjoy watching your dinosaur oligophrenial tea bag party self destruct,,,slowly– as its better that way. I like watching garbage rot slowly

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        Well it was the WHITE european catholic that created the world. Science, Advanced technology, modern medicine, space exploration…..all white. Without whitey where would the rest of the world be?…….squatting in the mud outside their grass shacks drawing pictures in the mud with a stick. Only a liberal (communist) fool would champion the non-contributors to society. The only thing rotting is America….under a mountain of debt…..created by liberals living on handouts from the productive (just like Europe).

      • gemma liar

        hey spongehead,im a white 55 yr old self employed straight male,,,and if U think whites are so supreme whats up with all the Asians who are WAAAAY ahead of us educationally? or the Asian Indians and Pakistanis who are cleaning our clocks??? if white “catholics” ( no bearing on IQ but nice to see ur true minimalist colors) created soooooo much then why do the white trash watch nascar or have such inbred cretins in the regressive party? as I said earlier: enjoy watching your poor genetic frauds collapse while the rest of mankind–and womankind– springs way past U and losers of your olk. non contributors? did U know that by PCT whites get more food stamps and welfare??? hows that working ( “working”???) for ya?

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        Yes,…..Liberals have destroyed the education system. Liberals eventually destroy everything they touch. The America that the white european created and what liberals (communists) have turn it into are very different things. Yes, America is a loser in the world today…….but only after liberal policies have been inacted.

      • gemma liar

        which; by extrapolation has YOU inferring that regressive policies ( SEE: Reagan,,,bush 1 & 2) did soooooo well for America!!! crushing debt sold overseas,,,,,record deficits,,,,,,NO JOB CREATION,,,,tax BREAKS for wealthy ( that does so well doesn’t it) ,,,unpaid wars and thousands of AMERICAN servicemen and women dead and maimed,,,,, 9/11……….. the destruction of the postal service,,,, hosuing bubble/ millions displaced now renting,,,,outsourcing of American JOBS overseas ( SEE: Reagan)…..trillions lost on “star wars” and othert GOP delights,,,,, YEAH BABEEEEEE,,,,,, bring back those tried and true policies.

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        Don’t wast “critical theory” on me……I am not a communist (liberal) so the social science nonsense is little more than a wast of time.

      • gemma liar

        yeah,,,U BEEEE right: those silly FACTS generally stop regressives as U in your stultified tracks.

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        like a said before I am not a communist so your cried are being wasted on me. America is broke….the economy is destroyed…..and you’re sinking quick. all the fault of liberals policies both now and in the past. Don’t wast communist critical theory on me.

      • gemma liar

        and( again),,,,, where was (were) all the creepy micropenile trash such as you when Reagan and the bush boys were sending us to the financial abyss?? “communist critical theory”….fresh from the dated useless playbook of FOX “news” and all the regressives- America isn’t broke: the wealthy UBER wealthy are doing better than ever ,,,upon the backs of the dissolved middle class and poor people. I make a very good living ( average about 90K bring home per year) yet I am NOT wealthy. I see the BS U regressives cry about: and can NEVER back it up with FACTS: only opinions. nearly all TRUE economists know that regressive rightwing policies do NOT work- yet U crybabies call kids; elderly and disabled ( including veterens) “moochers”. maybe JEEEESUS will come save us

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        Spending was 70% of GDP then……it is now 105%.
        debt was over $10 TRILLION….it’s now over $16 TRILLION……and rising. enough said.

      • gemma liar

        imbecile,,,,,,,,,,,GDP is dropped because the BUSH tax cuts did NOT stimulate the economy as “predicted” …also GDP is down because your mighty regressive policies crippled our economy to the point near DEPRESSION ( SEE: repub pres hoover) and when people don’t have those lost jobs and now have to pinch pennies they DONT SPEND- bush too a 6.2 TRILLION surplus and altered it to a 10 TRILLION deficit,,,,thats over 16 TRILLION reversal; yet NO TEA bag PARTY cried as he was a white boy. lets see,,,,,,,,,, 16plus trillion for BUSH,,,and OBAMA has “helped” out to 7 trillion? Hmmmm,,,help me here- my math is laughing at me as I keep finding 16+ larger than 7 ,,,,, help me mr wizard!!!

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        NO your economy is down and will not be inproving because you elected a Marxist…..who is against business. That’s OK for the rest of the world who now have your jobs. China and India have a whole new middle class thanks to what Obama threw away. Canada’s middle class is doing better now than it has done in 20 years thanks to the Obama policies. Were grateful to Obama the Marxist…..oh, I live in Canada a 15 minute drive from New York State….LOL

      • gemma liar

        Marxist????? with the stock market just blasting thru all-time highs and corporate profits staggeringly breaking records?? that MARXIST gets a failing grade from lenin/ Trotsky/stalin –ansd MAO–are gonna give our comrade president some seriously failing grades!

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        The stock Market again……how much of the products on the stock market are made in America? If you look the companies on the major markets are making their profits in other other countries not from increased sales in America. Yes they have record profits in many cases…..but since the sales are not in America, and since production is not in America…..and since shareholders are world wide. What does the stock market have to do with America. It’s not 1950 …..any more the listed stock are ALL global companies. The car companies for example are making all their money overseas as are the major movie studios. So there stock hitting record highs really has nothing to do with America. If your trying to use stock markets as an indicator of the US economy you picked a bad indicator….it’s not 1950’s anymore.

      • William Eberline

        Bob, I don’t agree with him either, but he has a point. In Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and in fact, MOST of western Europe, plus Australia, people enjoy higher incomes, have more purchasing power, work shorter hours with government-mandated vacation time and free government-mandated healthcare, and generally have a higher standard of living than we do in the US. Try traveling, yourself- it would be an eye-opener for you. Maybe YOU would like to go live there!

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        America has really taken a step backwards in the last 20 years. I am in Canada, we didn’t even feel the “so called” economic crises. Americans are sending us their jobs by the thousands. The over taxation, and over regulation has forced business out of the US….to more business friendly nations. There can be no industry without cheap energy. America has also decided to punish anyone who hires full-time employees…now 7 out of 10 jobs in America are part-time. America now has to print $85 BILLIONS dollars each month just to keep from collapsing……this is what liberalism has brought America. It’s strange watching the slow collapse of America.

      • always hopeful for compromise

        Gimme a break with “this is what liberalism has brought” nonsense. Everything is blamed on the the liberals. How is the single-payer insurance deal working for ya up there in Canada? I wonder if you understand that your conservative American colleagues will condemn you to eternal damnation unless you say it doesn’t work in Canada either.

        Blaming all the United States’ problems on liberals is both overly simple-minded and idiotic. But don’t let that stop you…..please continue insulting those that disagree with you. That is what makes people great!

      • Guy_in_Kingston

        I don’t agree with liberals because I oppose communism. If you lived in Canada you would know what a failure the healthcare system is. America became the greatest country in the world because of conservative thinking…….it is only in bad shape now because of liberal policy. America has become the new Europe (a failure) only because of liberals and nothing else.

  • Republicans are traitors

    Allen i usually enjoy your writing and 99% of the time i agree with you. but your dead wrong on this. Thinking this country is one of the greatest in earth, youve got to be kidding me with that line. maybe for you, but for minoritys, gays, the poor, it is far from great!

    • dave

      but its a lot better for them than it used to be.

      • JY

        I respectfully disagree Dave and yes I am a minority. Even I weren’t, the country as a whole got much worse.

    • gemma liar

      as screwed up as it is for them,,,,let them go ANYWHERE ELSE and see how they fare. this is the GREATEST country- despite scumbag regressive rightwing trash which holds down non white non male non straight non Christians……

  • Jeff H.

    The United States has the potential to be a great nation once again, but is not what many seem to think. There are plenty countries that provide more opportunity and freedom than the US, but some (Bob) refuse to acknowledge that other countries can be wonderful without degrading our experience as a nation. The success of the United States does not depend on our being ‘better’, it depends on us being great. So long as we measure ourselves against our enemies and allies rather than a higher standard, we will continue to fall short.

    There are many places on this earth that I believe are in much better shape than the US right now, but I love my country. So I’m not going to go live in Canada, or Belgium, or Norway. And if I may say so, suggesting that our best and brightest leave the country because they’re unhappy with the current state of affairs is an incredibly ignorant thing to say.

    Also, minorities, women and homosexuals have more rights (and far more press coverage) than at any time in our history as a nation. We’re currently in the height of a conflict over those rights, but conflict clarifies. It identifies core belief systems and deep seated bigotry. Without conflict, we wouldn’t have the opportunity to cast such things out of our national persona.

    The income gap and the political process (problems which are deeply interrelated) must be fixed. Remember that you’re watching theater with an amazing production budget. The news is hard to find.

  • Guy_in_Kingston

    Well Obama can not go back in time. It’s too late Putin made him little like a pouting little sissy metrosexual when he stood next to the alpha-male Putin. It’s pretty bad when Putin has to demonstrate to Obama what a real man looks like.
    The question I have is who can Putin be the President of Russia, and be the US Secretary of State at the same time.

    • gemma liar

      guy is correct,,,, that’s why we didn’t use BUSH style policy of killing American soldiers while (hopefully) getting the gas weapons gone,,,,stay tuned: guy will foment another pea brained reply soon!

  • Gabriel Gentile

    “that invest in their people instead of a corrupt few, that embrace a vision of society where everyone can contribute, men and women, Shia or Sunni Muslim, Christian or Jew”

    Sounds more like a jab against the GOP to me.

    • gemma liar

      and a well deserved one

  • califcowgirl1955

    Guy in Kingston, I am a liberal from California stay in Canada.

  • Lyola M Roeske Shafer

    The United States of America are and is exceptionally exceptional.

  • I Once Was Andrew

    America is not exceptional. It’s exceptionally powerful, which is very different.

    • gemma liar

      its exceptional,,,,,,,, if it wasn’t then WHY aren’t people LEAVING IN DROVES???