Your Letters: Obama's Promises, Twitter

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This week we had comments about whether President Obama has veered from his campaign promises and whether Weekend Edition is obsessed with the social networking site, Twitter.


Time now for your letters.

(Soundbite of typewriter and music)

SIMON: We would like to clarify an issue first. Many of you wrote in to complain that NPR News analyst Juan Williams and I referred to Dick Cheney as Vice President Cheney during our discussion last week. Several correspondence said that because Mr. Cheney is no longer in office he should not be addressed by that title.

Like many other media organizations, NPR treats titles like president, vice president or senator as lifetime honorifics. That's why you'll hear us continue to call former elected and appointed officials by their titles, like Justice O'Connor, President Clinton, and Vice President Cheney. The policy is applied uniformly regardless of political party or ideology.

My other conversation about politics last week, this one with NPR senior news analyst Dan Schorr, also inspired some reaction.

Felice Pace(ph) of Klamath, California writes: Listening to your conversation this morning concerning divergences between positions taken by candidate Obama and President Obama, I got the impression that you both accept - and by implication that the American people should accept - that candidates are going to take positions in campaigns that they will reverse or significantly modify once elected. It is a short distance from this it's-no-big-deal acceptance to implicit acceptance of the notion that it is okay for candidates to make promises they have no intention of fulfilling.

My commentary last week about Army Specialist Zachary Boyd, who was photographed wearing pink boxer shorts and flip-flops during a firefight in Afghanistan, brought this from Andrew Mellar(ph) of Santa Maria, California: Defense Secretary Robert Gates and President Obama may still have a chance to echo history in association with the soldier who was in combat in his shorts. They might borrow from Lincoln's reply to a critic of Ulysses S. Grant's drinking: Just find out to oblige me what brand of whiskey Grant drinks, because I want to send a barrel of it to each one of my generals.

Now, you've no doubt heard that WEEKEND EDITION has embraced social media, but some listeners, like Lynn Goldstein, of Narrowsburg, New York, thinks maybe we should loosen our grip. He writes: Twitter, the CB radio of our era - just as much hype, just as much lasting impact. We love NPR and we love WEEKEND EDITION, but with the highest respect, it is time to give the Twitter fascination a rest. P.S. - and now a word about eight-track tapes.

Well, we can't predict the future, but for the moment Twitter remains a good option for reaching us. My username on Twitter is NPRScottSimon. Our show's username is NPRWeekend - both all one word. There are other electronic methods of reaching us too. You can leave comments on our blog at You can go to the homepage of and click on Contact Us. Please remember to tell us where you live and how to pronounce your name.

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