The other day, Henry on Babalu singled out a prize passage in Obama's accepting the mantle of Democrat nominee speech worthy of a closer look:
I face this challenge with profound humility, and knowledge of my own limitations. But I also face it with limitless faith in the capacity of the American people… I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal… This was the moment — this was the time — when we came together to remake this great nation…
From the first sentence, I am suspicious. In my experience, people who feel the need to tell you they are humble, or honest, or even religious are almost never humble, or honest, or even religious. Okay, he has faith in the American people. That's fair enough and good boilerplate. Let's see "generations from now"..... I don't know about him, but I don't intend to play Tithonus. Right about that time, I should be pushing up organically grown daisies. But I do like that "this was the moment" bit as Obamamoses leads us to the promised land of free healthcare and full government employment. Sound familiar? It should. I do find the end of that sentence somewhat intellectually dishonest. The construction makes it seem as if there are people dying in our streets and bread lines in the cities. Not quite.
That pales in comparison to the next line in which Obama, Moses like, is apparently going to raise his Montblanc and still the rising ocean waters and perform a healing on the planet. Oh, but now I'm being intellectually dishonest. It's the American people under the able tutelage of Obama who are going to accomplish these supra herculean feats. Sure, appeal to American arrogance. Onward, behind Oprah, we will wage battle with those horrible polluters who feed us, heat us, power our vehicles, employ us, and who are essentially us. Who among us doesn't have a car?
But I digress. Back to our reading. Whoa, Betsy, what's this "remake this great nation" bullshit? There, oh, my brothers, is the scariest bit of all. This is supposed to be an election, not a revolution. Two hundred odd years ago, the founding fathers took care of that, and they did a pretty good job of it. Somehow I'd rather leave it in their hands than in those of a neophyte Senator with a propensity for bombast.