Former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi never spoke the name of the former Dictator (DT) even once during her appearance at SXSW. It’s for the same reason that this newspaper does not use his name, as she recognizes that the best way to starve a dictator of the oxygen needed to thrive is to deprive him of his name.

Speaking of the so-called Republican party, Pelosi said “it’s like a limbo contest they’re having with themselves to see how low can they go. What they do is use cultural issues: no politician has any right to make any declaration of what anyone else should do in his or her private life.”

Speaking to a capacity crowd of 300, Pelosi said the other side “mischaracterises the values that many of us share. So that’s what we’re up against, but we must win. We don’t win it by getting like them, we win it by taking it to a higher level, and I’m very proud of the work Joe Biden has done in that regard.”

On Jan. 6, 2021, she was quite direct: “The President of the United States incited an insurrection. Many of these people respected him as the President, so when he said go do this, they did. But that doesn’t absolve them of their own personal responsibility. That day was as horrible a day as you can imagine. They not only made an assault on The Capitol (this temple of democracy), they made an assault on the Constitution and the Congress of the United States.” While anarchists were shitting on the floor of the Capitol, the brave President was cheering them on from the White House.

Pelosi turned her guns on Fox (I won’t say ‘Fox News’ since propaganda is not news). “Something must be wrong with Tucker Carlson, and something must be wrong with anyone who believes what he says.” His viewers, she believes, are being “enthusiastically misled by what he has to say. People are breaking the law, threatening lives in a way that is encouraged by the once and never-future President of the United States. I had more respect for the office of President than he did.”

She characterized the gift of video recordings of the Jan. 6 insurrection to Carlson, by the current Speaker of House, as “totally irresponsible and dangerous: beneath the dignity of the office that he holds. When they do this they’ll say ‘Nancy did that.’ No, Nancy never did that!” Why she wondered out loud, “would you give that to a denier of our Democracy? A denier of what happened that day?”

Of the state of play now, Pelosi said “I’ve been in Congress a long time and have worked with Republicans over those years but only within the last decade and a half has it been so dangerous. I wish they would be the Republican party again, not a cult.” She even mentioned the pro-Putin caucus: “they don’t call themselves that, but that’s what they are.”

Pelosi said the Ukrainians fighting Putin are not only fighting for their democracy, but ours. “If Putin gets away with this, all of the surrounding countries (whether they’re NATO or not) are very concerned about what he will do next.”

Seeking inspiration from the past, she told the audience in Austin that she had been to the Inauguration of President Kennedy. She identified a particular sentence of his speech that is often overlooked. “To citizens of the world, ask not what America can do for you, but what we can do working together for the freedom of mankind.”  “That, I think, is what Joe Biden is doing” in response to the Ukrainian War.

Looking to freedom in this country, she warned “we cannot keep going down this deterioration path. We have always been more expansive about freedom, until now,” citing the roll-back of abortion rights and voter suppression.

With her husband watching from the front row, Pelosi had a message for the former dictator if he gets the Republican nomination for President: “We impeached him twice, and he’s going to lose twice!” It is the view of Sun News that Pelosi should be accorded the same title given to Cicero: Saviour of the Fatherland.


Photo by C Cunningham

Speaker Pelosi appeared at The Line hotel as part of a forum organised by The Atlantic magazine.

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By Dr. Cliff Cunningham

Dr. Cliff Cunningham is a planetary scientist, the acknowledged expert on the 19th century study of asteroids. He is a Research Fellow at the University of Southern Queensland in Australia. He serves as Editor of the History & Cultural Astronomy book series published by Springer; and Associate Editor of the Journal of Astronomical History & Heritage. Asteroid 4276 in space was named in his honour by the International Astronomical Union based in the recommendation of the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Dr. Cunningham has written or edited 15 books. His PhD is in the History of Astronomy, and he also holds a BA in Classical Studies.