* Susan Eisenhower (Dwight Eisenhower's granddaughter, whom I saw briefly on CNN this morning and is beautiful)
* Barack Obama [YouTube/C-SPAN]
I read the text of Obama's speech this morning and didn't get around to watching the video until this evening. Gotta love the shot of the emotion-filled woman in the audience mouthing "thank you" as Obama says "thank you" to the audience.
I was surprised they didn't pan to Hillary Clinton when Obama thanked her. I mean, she was present, right? Maybe it was 'cause he also thanked Bill Clinton and Bill wasn't?
"a man at ease with everyone from world leaders to the conductors on the Amtrak train he still takes home every night."
I loved that shout-out to Beau's story of how his dad traveled from Washington to Delaware every day to be with his family.
"To the love of my life, our next First Lady, Michelle Obama"
Jill Biden spontaneously rises in applause, and oh the little girls are adorable.
"John McCain has voted with George Bush ninety percent of the time."
MaryAlice and I bumped into Ian on our way back from lunch, and in talking, MaryAlice mentioned this stat, and Ian said that Obama's voted with Bush probably sixty percent of the time, because so many of the votes are "Declare the third Wednesday in August..." said that the "ninety percent" figure is somewhat overplayed.
"Now, I don't believe that Senator McCain doesn't care what's going on in the lives of Americans. I just think he doesn't know."
"Why else would he define middle-class as someone making under five million dollars a year?"
Okay, I am really tired of this "five million dollars" thing. McCain clearly didn't mean it as a serious answer -- which, yes, that's in very poor taste to joke like that, and it was a really stupid thing to say given that his whole thing was about wanting to focus on other factors rather than specific numbers, but I feel like it's not quite as serious as it gets made out to be. [edit because I neglected to include the YouTube clip.]
"In Washington, they call this the Ownership Society, but what it really means is - you're on your own."
Nice turn of phrase.
"so you can someday watch your child receive her college diploma."
"23 million new jobs that were created when Bill Clinton was President - when the average American family saw its income go up $7,500 instead of down $2,000 like it has under George Bush."
Wasn't Clinton President during the DotCom boom? (I tend to be hesitant to credit Presidents with too much power over the economy.)
"I don't know what kind of lives John McCain thinks that celebrities lead, but this has been mine."
I love this line so much.
"Ours is a promise that says government cannot solve all our problems, but what it should do is that which we cannot do for ourselves"
"That's the promise we need to keep. That's the change we need right now. So let me spell out exactly what that change would mean if I am President."
"I will cut taxes - cut taxes - for 95% of all working families."
I feel like this begs for a definition of "working families."
"I will set a clear goal as President: in ten years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East."
I winced as this began, but I like "oil from the Middle East" bit -- it doesn't say we have to be totally off oil, but just using domestic oil (hell, it even allows from oil from Venezuela, Canada, etc.).
"Washington's been talking about our oil addiction for the last thirty years, and John McCain has been there for twenty-six of them."
"As President, I will tap our natural gas reserves, invest in clean coal technology, and find ways to safely harness nuclear power."
"We are the party of Roosevelt. We are the party of Kennedy. So don't tell me that Democrats won't defend this country. Don't tell me that Democrats won't keep us safe. "
"one of the things that we have to change in our politics is the idea that people cannot disagree without challenging each other's character and patriotism."
I was actually feeling not that impressed by the speech when I read it (partly, I suspect, because I'd heard nothing but glowing things about it) but I really liked this:
The challenges we face require tough choices, and Democrats as well as Republicans will need to cast off the worn-out ideas and politics of the past. For part of what has been lost these past eight years can't just be measured by lost wages or bigger trade deficits. What has also been lost is our sense of common purpose - our sense of higher purpose. And that's what we have to restore.Course then I sighed at his next paragraph:
We may not agree on abortion, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don't tell me we can't uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals. I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination. Passions fly on immigration, but I don't know anyone who benefits when a mother is separated from her infant child or an employer undercuts American wages by hiring illegal workers. This too is part of America's promise - the promise of a democracy where we can find the strength and grace to bridge divides and unite in common effort.
I know there are those who dismiss such beliefs as happy talk. They claim that our insistence on something larger, something firmer and more honest in our public life is just a Trojan Horse for higher taxes and the abandonment of traditional values. And that's to be expected. Because if you don't have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare the voters. If you don't have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from."the greatest risk we can take is to try the same old politics with the same old players and expect a different result."
I really like that twist on the "electing an inexperienced candidate risky and you shouldn't do it" argument.
Mickey Kaus: "Mile High letdown"
I was amused by Russell Korobkin's post on McCain Campaign Response to Obama Speech: "It is a pretty poor performance, indeed, if you can't successfully identify more than one misleading claim in a 50 minute political speech, much of which focused on criticizing the opposing candidate."