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@FullComment.com: Olé, Obama

I think this year's Democratic nomination got locked down this morning. Read my instant reaction to what will be remembered as Barack Obama's "A More Perfect Union" speech in Philadelphia.


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Comments (13)

Gord Tulk:

My gut tells me that your are 180 degrees wrong in your assessment.

That the HC camp has not carried on can also be viewed as them thinking that this issue needs no prodding - that it has its own momentum now.

All we need is video of BO in the audeince clapping and cheering when Mr. Wright is saying some of these reprehensible things and BO will be dead meat, politically speaking.

Gary Hart was thought to have tamped down his scandal when he said "Follow me around. I don't care. I'm serious. If anybody wants to put a tail on me, go ahead. They'll be very bored."

and Bill Clinton got a brief reprieve when he said "I did not have sexual relations with that woman..."

and Richard Nixon got thousands of supportive letters and telegrams (many of them phoney it turns out) when he said "People have got to know whether or not their President is a crook. Well, I'm not a crook. I've earned everything I've got."

Time will tell who's right on this, but I think I have historical precedent on my side.

If it does cave-in on BO, the super-delegates will save the day - as they were designed to - by throwing their support and thus the nomination to HC.

Your gut tells you? Judging from the Alberta election, that's probably just the salmon croûtes from last night giving you trouble.


Obama’s speech has decided the issue for me.

I don’t want him as president – he’s just too damn charismatic.

Today, he pulled a “Clinton” by using his charm and rhetoric to explain away a real issue. If he gets elected, we might have something worse than another Clinton – another Kennedy. The last thing we need is another president who does stuff like trying to invade Cuba, starting a war in Vietnam and wiretapping everyone in sight while schtupping actresses and creating a legend of a new Camelot.

Gord Tulk:

Not surprised you brought that up colby. I had a long conversation with one of the people working in the Stelmach warroom last week (one of seven apparently) and they said thta their polling was showing a much poorer result for Mr. Ed right up until the last few days before the vote. what happened in the remaining days apparently was that many who wanted to vote liberal/ND/WRA as a protest worried that they might over-do it and put a taft at the helm.

All of the above has no bearing on the veracity of my opinion on BO, obviously.

and I am certainly not alone on this either as anyone reading the op-eds at Real Clear Politics will see.

The Obama speech really has nothing to do with Clinton. Clinton got out of these situations by just lying. He'd be telling us he had no recollection of attending Trinity Church and was not familiar with a Rev. Jeremiah Wright.


Whereas Obama is telling us that he has been a faithful follower of Wright for twenty years and regards him as part of the family, but had no idea he'd been saying these terrible things every single Sunday. Striking contrast, indeed.

First of all, that's about the most absurd possible summary you could make of the speech, so much so that one must doubt that you read or viewed it. Obama went out of his way to say he had heard Wright say controversial and shocking things. Second, "every single Sunday"? You have a complete collected edition of the gentleman's sermons handy?

John Thacker:

First of all, that's about the most absurd possible summary you could make of the speech, so much so that one must doubt that you read or viewed it. Obama went out of his way to say he had heard Wright say controversial and shocking things.

Yes, he absolutely did in that speech. At the same time, that follows a year of him claiming that he had not heard Wright say such things, as ABCNews notes here.

His initial reaction to the initial ABC News broadcast of Rev. Wright's sermons denouncing the U.S. was that he had never heard his pastor of 20 years make any comments that were anti-U.S. until the tape was played on air.
John Thacker:

You have a complete collected edition of the gentleman's sermons handy?

I do not believe that the available DVDs were anything close to a complete collected edition. I'm not sure exactly how much of a difference it makes if these remarks weren't every Sunday, but considered important enough to make a "Best Of" DVD. Of course, there's also the question of what fraction of the sermons on the DVD were of this "CIA invented AIDS, crack, and the US knew about Pearl Harbor and 9/11 ahead of time" nature.


Clinton lied about things until he got caught, and then used his charm to weasel his way out of consequences or win over his accusers. So far there is no evidence that Obama is as dishonest as Clinton, but that has nothing to do with my point. My point was about charisma, which Obama, Clinton and Kennedy all have/had to a degree unusual in American politics.

The point is that what Obama will be able to accomplish, and what he will be able to get away with, as president, due to his charisma, is scary and is enough of a reason for me to vote against him.


Am I the only person to think the speech was very, very ageist? Obama ditched the Rev, his Grandma, and anyone who is too old or of an age that they can no longer overcome ingrained prejudice. Even the old black man in the story at the end was all about the redemptive power of a younger person.
I think Obama's words about his pastor and church were spritually vacant, the positive stuff was leftist PC social work inspired by a very bland and unactivated faith. That slender theology underpins his hope message, it's too tough for old people to hope and do the hard work of racial healing, but if a whole bunch of untainted younger generations have enough hope that the old folks can be racially mollified then hope will be triumphant, a brighter future for all awaits!
The whole speech was a rhetorically brilliant potted history of race in the US, it heaped blame on the past and provided nothing substantive for the future. Lots of folks in the AARP still vote, more than any other age group in fact, that's either a sign of habit or hope for the future. I wonder how they feel for being blamed for the mess that Obama's hope is tailor made to fix?

I'm not suggesting that anyone should vote for Obama. I'm praising the speech in the same way I would a chess game: he seemed to be in an insoluble fix and his solution now has commentators comparing him to Abraham Lincoln. As a lot of people are pointing out, his welcome talk about how America is not a zero-sum game doesn't comport well with his preaching of class warfare and his stated views on free trade.

As for "ageism", I'm afraid I do believe that people inherently have more trouble shedding inherited or long-held prejudices as they grow older. It is the human condition. Saying so has gotten me in trouble before, but relaxing standards of political correctness that are too strict in general anyway is an appropriate form of deference to the elderly.

John Thacker:

Oh, it was a great speech, and I fear that even the "don't worry about the immigrant taking your job, worry about the foreigner doing so" part will play well, especially with the nasty non-parallel construction he made. (You see, when foreigners get jobs overseas, that's because of nasty profit-seeking companies only, and you shouldn't think about the poor foreigners. Jobs that go to current citizens or immigrants have nothing to do with companies looking for profit, though, apparently; the companies shouldn't even be mentioned.) I found the equivalences he drew in the speech offensive at times (opposing affirmative action == saying that the CIA invented AIDS), but I imagine that they'll be effective.


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