Category Archive 'Bad Art'

24 Jul 2008

Obombing in Berlin

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To read orgasmic accounts of leftwing emotional reactions (and leg spasms) to the rhetoric of Barack Obama, you’d think that we are living in the time of a great speaker, of another Churchill, another Lincoln.

The reality is that Obama possesses a good announcer’s voice, and can read from a teleprompter with appropriate emphases. I don’t suppose he writes all his own speeches, but he is responsible, in any case, for their content, or rather for the characteristic absence of any meaningful variety of the same.

The standard Obama speech is simply an extended litany of conventional liberal bromides, organized around the central prop of some historical event intended to shed borrowed glory upon the farrago of nonsense passing by in circles like the parade of elephants and clowns under a circus tent.

In Berlin, Obama used the Berlin airlift as his borrowed lamp, and Ann Althouse is not alone in finding more than a little irony in the invocation.

I guess we’re not supposed to think about how Obama wanted and still wants to give up on the Iraq war. Surely, if he’d been there in 1948, he would have said the Berlin airlift is hopeless. He thought the surge was hopeless.

My own favorite bit of inadvertent hilarity occurred as the great man arrived at his peroration, i.e., the portion of the speech where he sums up his conclusions. Having previously described himself as both an American citizen and a citizen of the world (though not a citizen of Kenya, which he might have mentioned, too), Obama revisited the original duality.

People of Berlin – people of the world – this is our moment. This is our time.

How can anyone not be moved to mirth by this classic piece of Obama thought? Whose time is it? Everybody’s. What do we do with it? Elect Obama.

I can picture Gilbert & Sullivan’s Gondolieri singing: If everybody’s is this time, then our time is nobody’s.


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