Thursday, August 28, 2008

Sen. Obama’s Acceptance Speech: Unsupported Promises from an Attractive, Decent, Eloquent but Unaccomplished Nominee

Sen. Obama’s Acceptance Speech


-Richard E. Vatz, Ph.D.

About Senator Barack Obama’s acceptance speech, a few observations…

1. It was a lengthy speech. It was a powerful speech. It was a speech that persuasively argued that the country has serious economic and foreign policy problems, and it was a speech that portrayed John McCain – especially as he was seen as a Bush surrogate -- as inadequate to deal with said problems. Most persuasive was Sen. Obama’s depicting the current Republican Administration as exhibiting the Marie Antoinette attitude of “you are on your own” respecting Americans financial problems. What was absent in the speech – and of virtually all Democratic convention speeches the last five days -- was even an attempt to cite any political accomplishments of Barack Obama, save the winning of the Democratic presidential nomination.

2. The speech, as expected, sported calls for change, deploring the “same old politics with the same old players.” No explanation was given pursuant to this screed regarding the major convention speakers of Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Al Gore and John Kerry and the worshipping of Jimmy Carter. Nor, not-so-incidentally, did Sen. Obama reconcile this disparagement with his choice of Joe Biden as Vice Presidential nominee.

3. Sen. Obama, true to his Democratic lineage, voiced support for a plethora of expensive Democratic programs, the costs of which he dismissed in a sentence or two, including his personal pledge to examine the federal budget. His promise to use tough “diplomacy” to rid Iran of nuclear weapons should frighten all of those who realize that Obaman eloquence has not shown itself to be negotiation-effective. His major error on the “surge” in Iraq? It didn’t come up. What exactly would he do differently in Georgia? In the Mideast? He didn't say.

4. Sen. Obama gave some voice to conservative values, such as hard work and individual responsibility and mercifully dispensed with the Democratic empty but heretofore heavy emphasis on “hope.”

5. Ending his speech with empty platitudes of “We can not turn back;” “we cannot walk alone,” and “we must march into the future,” Sen. Obama ultimately was saying in his acceptance speech the following: “In tough times, invest your trust in an articulate, mesmerizing speaker who has your interests at heart more than John McCain, whose party leadership has squandered it right to lead.”

Will it work to elect Barack Obama and Joe Biden as President and Vice President? This writer thinks not, but this writer has been wrong before.


Richard E. Vatz is a professor of political rhetoric at Towson University

8 comments:

warpmine said...

I knew it and predicted it. Just like every other speech he has given, long on platitudes and short on facts and specifics.
The screaming and fawning crowds of Nuremberg during the 1930's. I'm not suggesting that he's anything like Adolf Hitler, but I am suggesting the crowd got something other than the empty promises he made. Hidden in those rallies were hints of what was yet to come. Germany was destroyed in a few short years as was most of Europe. Can we afford yet again empty promises?

Was America great before? Will she be great again? Did she ever lose that quality? If so, why do they keep coming?

This guy, these people who would throw their vote to him are clueless and I lay the blame on the Public Education systems throughout the country dominated by liberals who espouse uniformity and mediocrity

fed up with red said...

Ahhhh Towson University, that bastion of political theory that brings students as far as, what Wicomico County? Are you guys considered 5th or 6th tier now?

I love it when Republicans, the party that does whatever it can to distract the electorate with mindless personality issues and social issues - like abortion and gay rights - that it NEVER does a thing about (how else to keep using the issues?), all of a sudden start wanting to talk "specifics". If the author of this, frankly, unbecoming for a supposed academic, post seriously thinks that a political candidate can express all the detailed specifics of policy plans that normal people are actually going to sit through, then he should be teaching at Frostburg instead of Towson (what's that 7th, 8th tier?). I look forward to seeing the same criticisms leveled toward the RNC next week when McCain & Co. use gimmick after gimmick to try and distract Americans from their abysmal record of stewardship over this country.

Your time is over, conservatives. Time to stop milking every penny out of the middle class to give to your patrons. Time to stop your borrow and spend economic policies. Time to end your ridiculous, completely ineffective gunboat diplomacy foreign policies. People who understand nuance in an extremely complicated world are about to take this country back.

Get out of our way.

Mark Newgent said...

"Time to stop milking every penny out of the middle class to give to your patrons"

You should know, progressives started that racket.

Keep parroting the Keith Olberman-MSNBC talking points. We don't need to do much arguing against that elementary school playground logic.

Keep patting youself on the back for you petulance.

fed up with red said...

I haven't watched Keith Olberman since he was on ESPN. This might be a difficult concept for all you talking point spewing Limbaugh groupies to understand, but not everyone gets their ideas from blowhard commentators.

Dr. Internet said...

"Time to stop milking every penny out of the middle class to give to your patrons."

While the red Maryland responders are up in arms about this comment from Fed Up, their nominee AGREES with it.

Sen. McCain has said that it's the middle class that takes the hit with the out-of-control pork that Republicans spent for 6 uninterrupted years. Does anyone think even one person among the shrinking middle class of this country benefitted from this orgy of irresponsible spending?

Sen. Clinton takes the point further by saying the no-bid contracts doled out by the administration amounted to more than 10 times the wasted money as budget pork. I haven't seen the numbers on this, but if she's only half right?

Republicans have abused corporate welfare for too long.

Fed Up: Go easy on Towson. It's not supposed to be Hopkins. It's set up to be a solid university that, which it is, not an ivy league school. It is what it is, despite it's jaded faculty who hide behind titles.

Gtoz said...

Warpmine hit the nail on the head; I especially agree with him on his comments about the public education system in this country. To bad Fed Up With Red cannot counter with anything better this his disparaging comments about Towson University. But then what should I have expected from the liberal elite? They have no constructive ideas, plans or programs, so all they can do is try to belittle those who do not buy their radical ideology.

fed up with red said...

God love Towson for what it is, a fine place for in state students to get an affordable college education. However when University professors start posting juvenile commentary on hateful, dimwitted blogs, it's time to start questioning their bona fides - particularly when their "PhD" is so prominently, laughingly displayed by people who have demonstrated a disdain for academia time and time again.

As for constructive plans, the left has plenty. Many of them were outlined the other night in Obama's speech complete with how they will be paid for in a budget that does not lie to the American people - like the current one - by pretending to cut taxes, while borrowing billions upon billions from Asian countries that our children will be forced to pay for, with interest.

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