Okay, Thursday night was the final night of the Democratic National Convention and, as is standard in both parties’ national conventions; it was closed out with a speech by that party’s Presidential nominee, in the case of the Democratic Party it was our sitting President, Barack Obama. As I have done with the Republican National Convention, and to date with the Democratic National Convention, I am writing my thoughts about each, beginning with an objective view, and closing with a more critical/cynical view, I will now do so with President Obama’s speech.
Objectively, I thought President Obama’s speech was good. I actually thought former President Clinton’s speech was a bit better (again objectively speaking). Obama’s speech seemed, to me, to take on a more solemn tone in the beginning, and over all I thought it felt more humble than many of his speeches before. With regards to the solemnity at the beginning, it seemed to me that the weight of the responsibility that comes with the office of the Presidency has taken its toll on him. To me this should serve as warning to anyone who so aspires to that office; that it is arguably the hardest job in the world, and one should not aspire to have it, if they aren’t prepared for the burdens that come with it. Those burdens should humble even the most confident of people, and I hope that all of those who are in pursuit of being our President are prepared for, and can handle what surely must be an almost crushing weight that will be placed on their shoulders, should they succeed in their pursuit. Don’t confuse what I am saying here with me believing President Obama is full of resignation. If he were, then I would think he would not be seeking reelection. No, as the speech proceeded he did pick up on his previous messages of hope and change; only this time it just struck me that he did so more modestly. I thought he came across as less aloof, more approachable, and, because of the earlier solemn tone, I even felt some empathy for him – not pity, but empathy. I too liked much of the spirit of the message. He was gracious where he needed to be, and he wasn’t to terribly harsh in his criticisms of his opponent; resorting more to jabs than outright slander or hyperbole.
That is my objective view of President Obama’s speech last night, what follows are my critical thoughts…
Below are some quotes from his speech that stuck out to me:
Well, quite honestly I agree with much of what each of those quotes say. I know, that might strike many of you who stop buy and read my posts regularly as a bit of a surprise; but if you notice, I said I agree with what those words say, because they are, by and large, quite libertarian (with the exception of the use of the words “force,” “good,” and “government” together), and what the path to liberty is – “… harder, but it does lead to a better place.” Unfortunately though, I don’t believe President Obama’s administration has, or will follow many, if any, of those principles. Neither do I believe that a Romney administration would either.
President Obama is absolutely right though when it comes to his statement that this democracy (Constitutional Republic for the nitpickers out there) is ours; which he then followed up with, “We, the people recognize that we have responsibilities as well as rights; that our destinies are bound together; that a freedom which asks only, what’s in it for me, a freedom without a commitment to others, a freedom without love or charity or duty or patriotism, is unworthy of our founding ideals, and those who died in their defense.” Again, quite a libertarian statement, while we are all granted those inalienable rights by our creator, those rights and that belief requires that each of us defend those rights, not just for ourselves, but in others and from those who propose to take away those rights. And yet, while saying those words, President Obama (as well as many a “freedom loving” Republican) supported the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act, which essentially has given the power of our government to strip anyone of us of those “…inalienable rights that … no man or government can take away.” So, again, while I agree with those words, the actions of our government, executed by both parties, do not reflect, nor follow much, if any of those above excerpts from his speech last night. Unfortunately though, as even the President alluded to in the beginning of his speech last night, too many of us will focus on those trivial things, which become big distractions, the serious issues being turned into sound bites, and the truth will get buried “…under an avalanche of money and advertising.”
Yes, this democracy is ours; and We the People do need to recognize our rights and responsibilities to it, and each other – which also requires acceptance, understanding, and awareness of when those whom we elect to represent us take steps to diminish our democracy; and more importantly our inalienable rights. Then We the People need to take the responsibility to have these inalienable rights restored by voting for those candidates who do more than pay lip service to them. I sadly think that both parties have turned to using our rights as sound bite fodder, to get us to think that they are champions for these inalienable rights, and then pass another law that treads firmly upon those rights. So, to paraphrase another quote from the President’s speech, don’t give up on your voice being heard, because as it stands right now the only voices being heard are the lobbyists, special interests, and 10 million dollar money donors; which both parties are all to glad to listen to, and to take their money. You do have choices this November, and there are more than two. It is your responsibility to be informed about these choices; but since the two major parties work to alienate, discourage, and block any would be challengers who are not “one of them” then I will simply tell you their names with links to who they are and what they represent. They are Green Party candidate Jill Stein and Libertarian Party candidate Gov. Gary Johnson. Also click here for an Associated Press Article on fact checking both the President’s and Vice President’s claims made in their respective speeches.
Promise only what you can deliver. Then deliver more than you promise. (Author Unknown)