Soapbox (((HearingVoices))) Radio Special

A Sampling 20th Century Political Speech
Hosted by Sarah Vowell (soundfiles=real 28K)

soundfiles Soapbox- Part 1 (33:00) featuring:
H Street elevation, animation of buildings 1790-1990

"Lafayette Square" by Scott Carrier. Hanging out for a few months with the mostly homeless protesters living in the park directly across the street from the White House.

"Family Photo Opp" by Dave Eggers. On the campaign trail with Dave's brother Bill, running for State Representative as a Republican -- blood is thicker than politics.

The first sound-recording of a presidential inauguration was made in 1925, Calvin Coolidge's ceremony. It was one of the first electrical recordings, using not acoustical horns to capture audio, but microphones and amplifiers to record the sound. (No inaugural recording exists of Coolidge's sucessor, Herbert Hoover.) During this first half of the radio special, we hear excerpts from:

CALVIN COOLIDGE Inaugural Address, Wednesday, March 4, 1925

FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT First Inaugural Address, Saturday, March 4, 1933

HARRY S. TRUMAN Inaugural Address, Thursday, January 20, 1949

DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER First Inaugural Address, Tuesday, January 20, 1953

JOHN F. KENNEDY Inaugural Address, Friday, January 20, 1961

Thomas and his signs, from Carrier's Lafayette Square radio story
Thomas in Lafayette Square; © 1983 Scott Carrier

soundfiles Soapbox- Part 2 (24:00) featuring:

"How to Write a Political Poem" and "Totally Like Whatever" by Taylor Mali. Two poetic polemics on rhetoric, rhyme, and reason -- "Where are the limbs onto which we once walked?"

"The Garden for Disappointed Politicians." by Sarah Vowell. Established as a conceptual public trust, based on Alexander Hamilton's observations on the good of gardening for frustrated pols. An entry in the book: The Future Dictionary of America (a lexicon of words which will be coined in a future, better U.S.A.).

Video file Bushisms (5:17)
QuickTime (17M) Real (56K)
Animation from Bushisms film
A Video by Trent Harris
Audio/Music: Jesse Boggs
Vox: Bush Administration

"Presidential Candidate" by Joe Frank. An excerpt from Joe's hour "Words" in which the politician shows his common roots, that he just like us -- i.e., full of repressed rage and deeply disturbed.

"WMD Waltz" by Jeese Boggs. An administration speaks with one voice, dances to the same disciplined downbeat.

And we hear more inaugural words from more Presidents of the United States. (President Ford did not have an Inauguration Day, but did have some memorable moments during his "Remarks On Taking the Oath of Office".):

LYNDON B. JOHNSON Inaugural Address, Wednesday, January 20, 1965

RICHARD M. NIXON Second Inaugural Address, Saturday, January 20, 1973

GERALD FORD Remarks On Taking the Oath of Office, Friday Aug. 9, 1974

JIMMY CARTER Inaugural Address, Thursday, January 20, 1977

RONALD REAGAN Second Inaugural Address, Monday, January 21, 1985

GEORGE H. W. BUSH Inaugural Address, Friday, January 20, 1989

BILL CLINTON First Inaugural Address, Thursday, January 20, 1993

GEORGE W. BUSH Inaugural Address, Saturday, January 20, 2001


URL link Sarah's- Consonant Vowells
URL link Scott's- All Things Carrier
URL link Scott Carrier- Text iconGreen River Stories
URL link Dave Eggers- McSweeney's
URL link Dave & Sarah- The Future Dictionary of America
URL link Taylor Mali-
URL link Joe Frank- Official Website
URL link Jesse Boggs- The News Lounge
URL link Trent Harris- Video Shorts

WEB RESOURCES: Lafayette Square, Inaugurations

URL link Library of Congress- "I Do Solemnly Swear": Presidential Inaugurations
URL link National Archives- Inauguration Quiz
URL link Truman Library- Presidential Inaugurations Quiz
URL link Grolier Encyclopedia- The American Presidency
URL link LOC's Historical American Building Survey- Lafayette Square
URL link National Park Service- Lafayette Square Historic District
URL link U.S. Dept. of Transportation- Imaginary Tour of Pennsylvania Avenue
URL link Lafayette Square's Thomas/Connie/Ellen- Proposition One
URL link Bold New Look- Interview with Concepción Picciotto (Connie)

This special was mixed by Robin Wise of Sound Imagery. Executive Producer is Barrett Golding. (((HearingVoices))) specials are crafted from new and classic radio shows. Funders include the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and National Endowment for the Arts.

Audio © the producers & (((HearingVoices))). Battle Mtn photos © Scott Carrier

Connie the Lafayette Square protestor from Scott Carrier's radio story Tony feeds the birds, from Scott Carrier's radio story
Concepción Picciotto (Connie) & Tony (he feeds the birds)
in Lafayette Square; © 1983 Scott Carrier