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September 20, 2017

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'Right' ridicule of Obama charisma

After four days of acute politicking, the Democratic National Convention in Denver closed with a massive fireworks display to celebrate the official coronation of Barack Obama as the Party's nominee, the first African-American to have a serious shot at becoming President of the United States. Besides all the hoopla, we were treated to what even some Republican analysts concede was a brilliantly staged effort to convince American voters that Barack Obama really is one of us, that he will be a wise commander-in-chief who actually will bring "Change We Can Believe In."

What was the Republican reaction to all of this? A key Republican strategist, perhaps representative of what we will hear from the Republican campaign in the weeks ahead, told CNN, "When Obama's record meets his rhetoric, it explodes in a fireball of hypocrisy." More on this later.

The Democrats kicked off the convention with a major effort to counter Republican efforts to portray Obama as an elitist airhead in a macchiato parlor, a lean black celebrity geek claiming to be Moses from on high. By the time Michelle Obama was finished speaking, Barack's story was laid out for all to see, with an added touch of romance. Beyond doubt Michelle is a speaker with flair who might well have outshined Hillary Clinton if she were running against her.

If words are to be believed, Hilary is not running against the Obamas any more. Her task was to unite the Democrats and she made a credible effort, clearly handing the mantle of Democratic leadership to Barack. She claimed that this campaign was not about her, but what she has been fighting for forever. That is what Barack is fighting for too. Senator McCain supports almost none of it, not universal health care, not equal pay not freedom of choice for women. She and others asserted that the stakes for America are far too high for the Democrats to lose this election. "No Way, No How, No McCain" was her mantra. For this, she earned accolades from every speaker whose words made it past the TV commentators, who far too often accorded themselves more importance than they deserve.

Keynote speaker Mark Warner, the immediate past governor of Virginia, led the attack brigades. His message was kick the bums out, though he never said it that way. He described this election as a "race for the future" against a candidate "stuck in the past." He had the charged up delegates chanting "Four More Months" in response to Republican striving for four more years.

Former President Bill Clinton's brilliance showed again, as he swallowed his resentments to claim that everything he had learned in eight years as President told him that Barack Obama is the commander-in-chief to lead the United States into the future. Other speakers seconded the theme that Obama would reclaim world respect and leadership for America.

Vice Presidential nominee Joe Biden played both defense and attack. He told of his own humble beginnings and stressed that Obama grew up without a father and his mother was on food stamps, yet he could live an American dream that is possible nowhere else on earth.

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