Cronkite at Pomona

This is powerful stuff. Somebody emailed me a copy of Walter Cronkite’s 2004 commencement address at Pomona University. It contained some pretty blunt observations, such as:

We are plagued with the Iraq war — a possibly improving economy — but still a tragically large population of unemployed or under-employed — and an environmental crisis that threatens the Earth…
We have an administration in Washington that has brought us to this condition — and we have a Democratic candidate presumptive who so far has proposed few remedies that offer any specifics that, to this observer at least, promise the necessary new deal in Washington…
But the Kerry camp may well have been buffaloed by President Bush’s oft-repeated pledge that we won’t “cut and run” from Iraq…
Is it possible that the “cut and run” stigma has so intimidated the Democratic candidate that he can’t muster the courage to acknowledge that we must leave Iraq and to offer a plan to expedite the departure with honor?

My urban legend alarm rang immediately. The internet is full of bogus commencement speeches that were never made. But I did a quick search and found the full text of the speech on Pomona College’s website, among other places. That’s proof enough for me. It’s real. And it’s worth reading.

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