More Post-Speech Reaction

James Lileks is pointed and brilliant as always. Hugh Hewitt and I agree Kerry needed a home run, but only hit a single. The ever-astute Michele Catalano didn’t think Kerry had much for swing voters either. Jeff Jacoby wonders why Kerry’s Senate career has suddently disappeared. (Here’s a hint: because what he did in the Senate would make him out to be the far-left liberal he is, and liberals don’t win elections in this country.) Jonah Goldberg thinks it was a speech written by committee, which I think is the biggest problem it had.

And later, don’t forget to catch my upcoming piece on Red State on how one word can give George W. Bush four more years in the White House…

4 thoughts on “More Post-Speech Reaction

  1. Mr. Waldie is correct–the lack of “we live in a changed world” rhetoric undermines the rest of what Kerry said (which was not that well argued anyway).

    The speech was good for Kerry’s base and those who were already going to vote for him, but he did not win one swing voter over with it, didn’t seal one white state over to blue. It lacked poetry and fluffed a little policy and worn rhetoric (the only effective line of which–“help/hope” is on the way–he took from Bush’s 2000 speech) into a 55 minute bulbous buffont of oratory. Bill Clinton, Al Sharpton, John Edwards (and, for that matter, John Edwards’ wife and those ubiquitous mop-topped angels of his) and DEFINITELY Barack Obama had him beat. If I had to characterize Kerry’s speech in one word it would be: anticlimatic.

    The DNC finally puts on a convention that runs on time and builds to a frenzy–Boston, the Kennedys, the biography, the unity… and then this speech to end it? It lacked rhetorical beauty; there was no poetry. Jay is correct in citing the ambiguity of “we can do better.” I would also criticize the phrase “what does it mean when…(insert thing Democrats don’t like here)” because Kerry never told us what it DOES mean.

    From a policy standpoint, the speech was too convoluted to mean much. The only certain policy one could gleen is “rolling back” (read: raising) the taxes of the wealthiest 2 percent of citizens. There is nothing to say about the Iraq section because Kerry himself said nothing. Does anybody know what Kerry would do with regard to Iraq as president? I did not hear it in his speech last night. And what about guns, gays, and abortion? They also seemed mysteriously absent.

    In summary, the speech was about a 4. It’s not just that Kerry needed a home-run–it’s that he had the opportunity to hit one and he bunted. At least he didn’t get beaned I guess.

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  3. Interesting how Kerry invoked the flag last night, yet published a book in 1971 called The New Soldier that had a picture of the flag upside down on its cover. Many of Kerry’s buddies in his antiwar protest days loved to burn and step on the flag.

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