Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Musings on the Democratic Convention

I'm generally not a huge fan of big, pointless political theatre, but tonight's Convention happenings were kinda cool anyway. It was all pretty well staged (but that lady chairing the roll-call was frightening looking), and it hit the right notes of unity (unity unity UNITY!) with Hillary asking for the acclamation thingy to end the roll call of the states, and half the people in the stadium in tears as Obama was officially nominated, with the network talking heads all blathering on about the history being made.

I'm hoping that Bill really tears into the Republicans tonight. It's nice to be all touchy-feely, but it's time for some red meat. Also interested in what Biden has to say.

Oh, and Mitt Romney? Total douchebag:

Former governor Mitt Romney, perhaps continuing his audition to be John McCain's
running mate, attacked Barack Obama today for making an issue out of McCain's
many homes.

Speaking to reporters at a lunch sponsored by the Christian
Science Monitor, Romney said that while McCain deserved his houses because of
the "hard work" of himself and his family, "Barack Obama got a special deal from
a convicted felon."

I mean, seriously. The "hard work" of McCain and his family? Well, maybe Cindy's family, but certainly not Cindy herself or John McCain. And Barack Obama's success can be boiled down to getting a "special deal from a convicted felon"? Uh, no. He didn't get a "special deal". He and his wife bought a nice house at the market price. Obama was able to do this because of his accomplishments in the fields of law, academics, and politics, and not because he married a wealthy beer heiress. The Republicans are bent and determined to push this bullshit affirmative action meme against the Obamas, even when the facts are diametrically opposed to it. Hasn't ever stopped them before, I guess.
(h/t Steve Benen)

This kind of crap is why I'm hoping Bill really throttles the GOP tonight. They fucking deserve it.

LATE UPDATE: Ezra Klein has a warning.

Say what you will about the 2004 Convention, it had a theme. Conversely, the
first night of the 2008 Democratic Convention had Michelle Obama bring the warm
and fuzzies, Ted Kennedy calling forth tears and hankies, and Jim Leach speaking
quietly and pedantically without any serious promotion from the Obama campaign.
The second night of the 2004 Convention saw Barack Obama tearing apart the
arena. In 2008, we had Mark Warner with a well-crafted speech that fell flat
because it was an attack structure that refused to name the politician it was
attacking. You had Hillary Cinton giving a powerful address, but it was an
address that was broadly aimed at problems in the Democratic Party, not the
problems with the Republican Party.

The first two days of the convention
were wasted, or seemed so from my vantage point. Tonight, Joe Biden will rip
into McCain. And tomorrow, Obama will do whatever he does. Then on Friday, at
noon, John McCain will announce his vice presidential nominee, strangling any
convention bounce in the crib. Then the Republican Convention will begin, and
you can be assured that they will remember Barack Obama's name. They will
remember how to make fun of him, how to mock his celebrity and inexperience. And
the media will not cover Ron Paul's protesters with the vigor or attention they
gave to Hillary Clinton's diehards.
Instead, they will cover four days of
straight attacks on Barack Obama, culminating with a grave address about
sacrifice and service from John McCain. And unless Obama's convention makes a
sharp turn tonight and tomorrow, they will have done nothing to soften the
impact of these attacks and themes or create a counternarrative for the media to

True that. And Bill's speech was good, but come on guys, you can't just build the case for Obama, you have to build the case against McCain. And that case is there, waiting to be made.

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