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Thursday, July 29, 2004
Way Too Convention-al
I’d told myself that I had too much to do in the evenings this week to sit around and watch the Democratic Convention. (After all, the Republicans are more entertaining, aren’t they?) The Networks™ had pegged the whole thing as being fairly predictable. And rightly so. But there I was, Tuesday night, watching a few of the speeches. Last night, too. And some too much commentary.

Here’s what I’ve noticed so far:

-- First of all, on Tuesday night, I got to see a nice exchange on MSNBC between Chris Matthews and the charismatic Future of the Democratic Party . . . Ben Affleck.*

-- The speech by Barack Obama was, quite possibly, the best political speech I’ve ever seen.

-- After his speech, I flipped over to Fox News to see what their take was. Brit Hume didn’t seem too impressed. But a plane could crash right in front of him and I’d bet it wouldn’t phase him. (Survey says, Thorazine!)

-- I didn’t stay with Fox News to see how Fair and Balanced™ they were. But, along that theme, MSNBC busted out Pat Buchanan and Ralph Reed. And Mr. Matthews was treating ol’ Ralphie like a best friend. It made me want to wretch. Seriously. (As I told Michelle, “Oh, I hate that slimy motherfucker.”) And then he was interviewing Gov. Mark Warner (of Virginia) and was giving him a hard time. So, sometimes, Hardball is more like whiffle ball, and sometimes it’s time for a kick in the nuts. It’s random and non-partisan. Even though Chrissy cried after Al Gore’s speech at the 2000 convention.

-- I watched Al Sharpton’s speech and was pleasantly surprised that he seemed to be fitting in, despite his typical Reverendly yelling. And then MSNBC cut to the commentators whining about him being off-script/off-message. Hey, weren’t you clowns complaining about how the conventions were so scripted and choreographed so there were no surprises? Suck it up! Variety is interesting. You have a presidential candidate who’s stodgy and wooden and a vice presidential who’s all sweetness and light; don’t you need an angry black man with bad hair? Oh, p.s., while you were blathering on about Sharpton being out-of-place and undeserving of the podium, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm was speaking. I bet she was on message.

-- I kept dozing off during John Edwards’ speech. But I did stay lucid long enough to hear him say “two Americas.”

-- The MSNBC crew has a ‘blog. Some interesting behind-the-scenes stuff.

* Okay, maybe not. That’s Mr. Obama. But Ben is surprisingly articulate and knowledgeable about politics. Or not surprisingly if you know he’s been campaigning with John Kerry.