July 30th, 2004

Lady Gaga by Jordana

The DNC and Kerry's Speech

During the whole DNC, I saw a couple of amazing speeches (Clinton, Obama), some really good speeches (Edwards, Sharpton, Alexandra Kerry, Max Cleland, THK), and some stinkers (Gephardt, Lieberman).

Well, to be honest, Lieberman didn't really stink up the joint, but let's face it. Lieberman had no love in the room. When you side with the enemy more than the home team, people aren't going to buy your rendition as team cheerleader.

I suppose it's a result of lowered expectations and believing the "hype" that Kerry makes Gore look like Jim Carrey, that I half-expected Kerry's speech to be downright anti-climatic. I must say, I was pleasantly surprised. Kerry wasn't Clinton or Obama, but he legitamately had the crowd on their feet numerous times. I think his speech was effective.

During the primaries, I didn't want to side with any one candidate because I didn't want to get emotionally invested in a candidate that fell by the wayside. And in any case, like in Jon Stewart's film for Kerry, I was for "Anybody But Bush". And if "Anybody But Bush" was Clark, Edwards, Kerry, Dean, or Mosely-Braun, that's was fine by me.

And because I made a point of not getting emotionally vested, I think I do still have an emotional disconnect from Kerry. But I think that would have been true of any of the Dem candidates. Even so, I felt hearing his daughters' speeches, seeing the film and listening to his speech, I feel like I know him better. And what I learned was heartening to me. I think if he does get elected (fingers crossed), then our country will at least veer away from the wrong direction.

I know the old saying, "Once you've got sincerity down, you've got it made." But Kerry and Edwards did come off as good, sincere people to me. Don't get me wrong, I did see the stage managing of the event. I could feel that. But I suppose that's necessary. I hope Kerry apologized beforehand to Russman for asking him to tell everybody about a thousand times how Kerry saved him. Hey buddy, I'm sorry to ask you do this. But could you tell everybody about that time I saved you? Can you do it about a GAZILLION times? Uh, thanks.

This was the first convention I watched basically from beginning to end. I've never been interested in doing so before. And now that it's done, I've got to marvel at the structure of it all. All the previous speeches were touching on parts of the Democratic ideas, and Kerry's speech was structured to bring it all together as a whole. I felt the whole operation was well planned and executed, barring the balloon fubar. ::snerk::

What really amazed me about the DNC, was the raw emotional appeal they were working. It seems like to me in the past, the Dem message has always been more a cerebral thing. Yes, we're the bleeding hearts, but never has the message been as primal as this values message.

The RNC throws God and Patriotism around as if only they have a lock on these issues. I'm glad the Dems have finally and publically claimed their rightful chunk of patriotism. That our values aren't just intellectual ideals, but deeply felt beliefs of fairness, tolerance and creating a better world for the future rather than hogging up everything NOW, not caring if we're screwing everybody else, including out children's children.

Some of the hightlights of Kerry's speech:
We value an America that controls its own destiny because it's finally and forever independent of Mideast oil. What does it mean for our economy and our national security when we only have three percent of the world's oil reserves, yet we rely on foreign countries for fifty-three percent of what we consume?

I want an America that relies on its own ingenuity and innovation - not the Saudi Royal family.

Dude, I so cannot believe he mentioned the Saudi Royal family. But seriously, I'm so on the same page here. We've got to work on alternative fuel sources, or this is going to be an ugly, ugly world in about 50 years.
Now I know there are those who criticize me for seeing complexities - and I do - because some issues just aren't all that simple. Saying there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq doesn't make it so. Saying we can fight a war on the cheap doesn't make it so. And proclaiming mission accomplished certainly doesn't make it so.

Heh. Who could he be talking about?
And tonight, we have an important message for those who question the patriotism of Americans who offer a better direction for our country. Before wrapping themselves in the flag and shutting their eyes and ears to the truth, they should remember what America is really all about. They should remember the great idea of freedom for which so many have given their lives. Our purpose now is to reclaim democracy itself. We are here to affirm that when Americans stand up and speak their minds and say America can do better, that is not a challenge to patriotism; it is the heart and soul of patriotism.

Thank you. I'm sick of these assholes that brand you as unpatriotic if you don't agree with Dubya.

Anyway, that's my take. I may have to hide some of this under a lj-cut, 'cause I usually don't ramble on this long. I just wanted to get it out.
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