Category: DNC ’08

Obama answers the bell, comes out punching

Wow. I’m glad I wasn’t with the McCain campaign tonight, watching the Obama show at Mile High Stadium. How does Mac compete with spectacle like that? He can’t draw a crowd like that. He can’t deliver a speech like that.

I’ve been in that stadium several times, with sold-out crowds. Not counting seating on the field. But I haven’t seen it fully lighted like tonight, both the stands and the field, with a view from the air. That was an awesome shot. Even without the speeches.

Obama’s speech was solid and on point. And surely it was no accident that it included lines and themes we’ve heard before. Neither the speech nor the music was geared to keeping the crowd on its feet and chanting nonstop. It didn’t close with rock music and dancing, as at a party, but with a more patriotic, uplifting, and thoughtful air.

I saw a tougher Obama, a boxer finally beginning to counterpunch. It was reassuring, because you can’t win a fight if you don’t engage. The sweet science. Yep, he’s probably going to be good at this, too.


© 2008 Some rights reserved.

Momentary DNC star: Barney Smith



I’m flipping channels, watching coverage of the DNC on the various networks. CNN and MSNBC seem to think their pundits are a bigger attraction than the activities in the stadium. Ugh. So I’ve checked CSPAN and a few minutes ago switched to PBS.

Some everyday Americans are taking turns speaking, and they are definitely not trained speakers. But I caught one of the day’s best lines from a man who appeared transfixed by the teleprompter. His name was Barney Smith, and his job had been shipped overseas. Like the speakers before him, he told of financial hardship in the last four years. His line:

We need a president who will put Barney Smith ahead of Smith Barney.

Great line. Great response. The crowd, all 75,000, started chanting “Barney, Barney, Barney!”

Barney may be having a hard time, but he’ll never forget what happened tonight.

Way to go, Barney!

Daytime TV: Watching the watchers watch the DNC

The McCain campaign is gaming the system today, hinting broadly that McCain’s veep has been chosen and will be named tomorrow, or maybe today if the name “leaks.” Regardless of whether it leaks, and whether the leak is accidental or intentional, the media can’t help themselves and are reporting it. Which is, of course, the whole point.

I’m not crazy about McCain trying to rain on Obama’s big day, but that’s the way the game is played. It’s particularly hard to criticize the tactics when Hurricane Gustav seems intent on upstaging the Republican Convention next week.

As part of their let’s-fill-airtime-until-tonight effort, MSNBC just aired a new McCain ad titled “Convention Message,” set for release tonight. A classy, tasteful production, it’s a polite nod to the historical significance of Obama’s nomination before the Republicans “cry havoc and loose the dogs of war.”