American Presidential Politics

Last night I listened to parts of the Democratic National Convention – including the speeches of Al Gore and Barack Obama. I find Mr. Obama a good orator, and he and his wife appear understandable and sincere.

There is something about the whole Convention that troubles me (and I would guess that I will have the same trouble with the Republican National Convention). The Convention gives the Party a national stage (I watched on CNN so do not know how much the other networks carried). Here is an enormous opportunity to lay out your case before the American people.

They use their time, however, to have hundreds of speakers say the same thing!

Al Gore, who knows a great deal about the environment and energy, could lay out a Democratic vision, platform, and program…he does not (other than to repeat a series of dire statistics). Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island could lay out a vision, platform, and program on the military and international affairs…he does not.

I believe the American people want to know the ‘nuts and bolts’ of what would be proposed if Barack Obama was elected president….and they want to hear it from the horse’s mouth. Mr. Obama spent a few minutes on those issues, and, for me, it was the most compelling part of his speech. Given his wonderful ability to speak, he crafted a few skillful platform issues. It was great! I’ve got a sense of what he would attempt.

Now on to the Republican Convention.