Friday, August 29, 2008


As a Canadian I'm used to political conventions that barely register a blip on the radar unless one party is joining another; thus, it's not surprising that I was overwhelmed by the 2008 Democratic National Convention. Nevertheless, the 2 stadiums, Green Sunday concert and wide TV/internet viewership made this convention large, even on the American scale. What was even more surprising than the 22 hours of speeches and performances over 4 days was the high quality of these speeches. Of course, the big three, the speeches of Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama are the ones that will last in society's memory. (These links to the NY Times provide interactive transcripts, a cool feature). All three were exceptionally crafted and covered what I expected. I was surprised to find that Obama's caught me off guard: while listening I kept thinking, "Mention how you will pay for these programs". It took him twenty minutes to get to the pay part and he covered it in one line. I think he should have spent a little more time on this; nevertheless, his speech was as captivating and motivating as usual and contained the big chunk of policy and justification that pundits were expecting. I only wish it was Harper who had made the commitment to end our country's dependence on imported oil in the next ten years.

I must hand it to the Clintons: they kept themselves composed and have averted the predictions of a bitter fight and fratricide. They have really bent over backwards. Furthermore, she exemplified the eloquence and wisdom that drew so many voters to her in the first place. In the end the Convention out shone McCain and his clever ads.

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