Also missing: me, my, mine.
I heard the criticism — from my husband Meade who is reading the speech alongside me — that the Fort Hood speech needed another draft, because there was too much use of the passive voice. I suspected that a special effort had been made to eliminate the first person singular. Obama is often criticized for using the word "I" too much. There are Obama critics who will count the word "I" in speeches and triumphantly announce the number. This criticism is a bit superficial. More significant is the way Obama speaks as if everything is all about him. Just this morning, I just knocked him for exactly that. Whoever wrote the Fort Hood speech must have been hyperfocused on protecting Obama from the usual criticisms. Appropriately so. It was a memorial for the dead. It would have been especially embarrassing for Obama's personal egotism to show on this occasion. But the intense effort to avoid it shows. He could afford to avoid it less conspicuously, and he ought to avoid it more consistently.
IN THE COMMENTS: With a fine eye for detail, Brian noted:
There was one self-referential moment. At Fort Hood he says: "You may remember the stories of a grandfather who marched across Europe..."
At 2004 Dem convention he said: "The day after Pearl Harbor my grandfather signed up for duty; joined Patton’s army, marched across Europe."Ah! Truly, someone went over this speech very carefully to scrub it of the first-person singular.