You can find video and text of Barack Obama's speech at the Huffington Post. I heard that Charles Babbington of the Associated Press sent out a less than stellar review but on MSNBC they were raving and we loved it. Judge for yourself. I think that given all the jobs this speech needed to do and that it needed especially to draw blue collar rural white men in the battleground states--it was masterful! So many good lines, such a good balance of expressing the compassion that Democrats are known for but the steel on defense that Republicans try to appropriate solely for themselves. He hit McCain on not only judgment but temperament, a reference to his legendary tendency to lose his temper. As Al Sharpton pointed out, "You can't get any slick ads that can re-do your temperament." Reportedly, McCain's recent interview with Time magazine was "prickly" with McCain refusing to answer some questions and bristling over others. It might be amusing to watch him calmly try to refute that he's got a temper. Joe Scarborough did a hilarious imitation of what Obama was getting at: humoring a crotchety old man's temper and saying he's not trying to be mean.
I suggest that it's best to watch Obama's speech because of course he does a masterful delivery and that's the best possible way to judge it.
I predict a bump for the Dems. Double the bump if Gustav as a hurricane hits New Orleans during the Republican convention. Could that be God's judgment? Or perhaps the mere threat is meant to be a potent reminder of just how bad Republican rule has been--and that McCain did little to mitigate it. No, it's mere chance--we're not the party that sees Divine Retribution everywhere, however much we may have begun to long for it as we watched so many atrocities these past 8 years.
However, once again it's coming at the end of the month when poor people are completely broke and have no money for gas or bus fare to evacuate. Let's hope FEMA is on top of things this time around.