The Good and Bad of McCain's Speech


Millions locked in last night as the RNC came to its fulfillment, McCain accepted the party nomination and gave his speech to a cheering, sometimes jeering–I’m always amazed at the hecklers–crowd. The night before Sarah Palin had the audience swooning as she launched herself into the spotlight across America and referenced herself as a bulldog with lipstick. To be sure, it’s a great strategic move for McCain to add Palin, some would disagree, saying that she’s too similar in stance and doesn’t broaden McCain’s voter bloc enogh, but I believe she does. She adds what McCain is lacking, namely, something for both young voters and women to relate to.

I will have to be honest I wasn’t sure how I would feel about McCain’s speech. I’ve had a sort of love-hate relationship with McCain. I’ve seen him in some venues and it’s been a disaster, like Conan, it was so awkward, just not his venue. But at the Saddleback Civil Forum, I think he shined.

McCain spent the first half of his speech dealing with issues of programmatic change. The second half was more of a storied worldview about his captivity and his call for a revival of civil service. It was a good speech. But, instead of serving you up with punditry and platitudes, I thought I would just give you my take on both the good and bad of McCain’s night.

Good: McCain talked about his reforming tendencies and maverick mindset—which, accompanied by Pailn’s reform, has the power to shake up Washington.

Bad: The cameras captured many yawns across the stadium, mostly by people under 25.

Good: “We are going to regain the trust of the American people, going back to values, the party of Lincoln, Roosevelt and Regan; we’re going back to the basics.”

Bad: It makes me think of that Acapella song, “We’ve got to get back to the basics of life…”

Good: McCain smiled a lot.

Bad: McCain smiled a lot.

Good: The promise to confront evil.

Bad: The thought of more war.

Good: Education is the civil rights issue of this century.

Bad: What about education in other countries?

Good: “My country saved me and I can’t forget and I will fight for her so long as I have breath, so help me God.”

Bad: We’re OK here.

Good: “Nothing brings more happiness in life than to serve a cause greater than yourself.”

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Bad: I’m thinking that’s a great quote about the church, not necessarily America.

Good: He has the fire to fight his own party, even in his acceptance speech.

Bad: Not much was mentioned about the environment, ending the war, aiding suffering countries. (Now, to be fair, Cindy McCain covered some of this well.)

Good: McCain’s speech ended with a grand-finally-like uproar.

Bad: His last words where repeated by one of the news anchors and it sounded more moving when he did it.

OK, overall, I thought it was a very prolific speech. And, now that the conventions are over, and there’s 60 days left, the fun begins. The debates. Real issues.

Both tickets are historic, their worldviews are contrasting, both presidential nominees call themselves Christians, which means, we’ll have a great deal to discuss in the next two months.

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