Thursday, September 04, 2008

RNC: McCain

RNC: Sen. John McCain

Accepting the nomination. Paying tribute (without naming them) to the candidates who opposed him in the primaries.

What's with the green background?

A nod to President 43 and Mrs. Bush, and to President 41 and Mrs. Bush.

Tributes to Mrs. McCain, his wife, and to Mrs. McCain, his mom -- "96 years young."

Subdued applause when he says of Sen. Obama "you have my respect and admiration."

Applause less restrained when he says "let there be no doubt, we're going to win this election!"

Protesters interrupting. "My friends, please don't be diverted by the ground noise and the static!"

"I've found just the right partner to help me shake up Washington, D.C." -- okay, so far, nothing substantive, but gracious nods all around to those to whom gracious nods are due.

"Change is coming." We'll see.

"I don't work for a party, I don't work for a special interest, I don't work for myself -- I work for you" -- decent-sounding line, not much there.

Pledges to stop pork-barrel spending and to name the names of the biggest offenders. Again, we'll see.

Reminding us of his willingness to buck popular opinion (the surge).

Awkward cadence to the "it matters less that you fight than what you fight for" line.

"We were elected to change Washington and we let Washington change us." True. And well-cadenced. And well-delivered.

"The party of Lincoln, Roosevelt and Reagan is going to get back to basics." We'll see.

"We believe in work, faith, service ... a culture of life ... and judges ... who don't legislate from the bench." Standard GOP stuff.

"A government that doesn't make choices for you but works to make sure that you have more choices to make for yourself."

Now, a brief litany of differences between JSM and BHO. "He will raise taxes ... force families into a government-run health-care system where a bureaucrat stands between you and your doctor."

Now, the backdrop is sky-blue. Better.

"Education is the civil-rights issue of this century." Really??

"What is the value of access to a failing school?" "Empower parents with choice." "Help bad teachers find another line of work."

"Sen. Obama wants our schools to answer to unions and entrenched bureaucrats; I want our schools to answer to parents and students."

"Produce more energy at home." "Drill new wells offshore." "Build more nuclear power plants." Wind, solar, hybrid, etc.

"Rescue our economy from the damage caused by rising oil prices." Okay.

"We must see the threats to peace and liberty clearly -- face them with confidence, wisdom, and resolve."

Now he's turning to (turning on?) Russia. "International lawlessness that threatens the peace and stability of the world." Tough words.

About the "dangers" the world faces. "I'm not afraid of them, I'm prepared for them." "I know how the world works." "I know how to secure the peace."

His experience in Vietnam is mentioned -- "I hate war. I know how horrible it is" -- as he pledges to prevent unnecessary war.

Deplores "constant partisan rancor." Mentions how he reaches across the aisle.

Pledges his administration will set "a new standard for transparency and accountability."

"An imperfect servant of my country -- but a servant first, last, and always."

"I was blessed by misfortune, because I served in the company of heroes ... witnessed countless acts of courage."

"I was dumped in a dark cell and left to die."

Tells of having to be fed by two cellmates because his arms wouldn't work. Very moving and powerful.

Then, solitary confinement. Turned down the offer of early release. Crowd stands and applauds. I'm getting a chill.

"I fell in love with my country when I was a prisoner in someone else's." That is the genuine article of patriotism. Modest compared to some of the other displays we've seen, and with the ring of truth.

"I'm not running because I believe ... that history has anointed me to save my country in its hour of need." A shot at the Obama, no doubt, but I think the current occupant of 1600 sees himself in these terms.

"Nothing brings greater happiness in life than to serve a cause greater than yourself."

"Stand up! Stand up and fight for what's right," etc. He's being drowned out by the crowd!

Not a bad speech. Some characteristic awkwardness at times in the delivery, and of course the interruptions. Mostly generalities and goals rather than specifics. The personal narrative was the most powerful part, and I guess it ended well. (Will have to get transcript from somewhere -- my typing got lazy.) It's pretty much what you'd expect to hear from a Republican nominee for President.

Balloons, confetti, televised fireworks.