Saturday, October 25, 2014
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Live From Mt. Olympus

They're knocking the Greek temple setting. But can they touch his words? What must Barack Obama do tonight?

Live From Mt. Olympus

Jon Stewart likened it to The Parthenon. Fox News went with The Colosseum

Reuters tried "Greek Temple."

Which Charles Krauthamer agreed with, in an op-ed piece entitled "Has He Lost His Mind?" about Barack Obama's plan to accept the Democratic nomination for the presidency outdoors tonight before 75,000 plus people at Denver's Invesco Field on a suspiciously classical stage. The conservative columnist called it:

The Berlin folly -- in English.

The Superbowl Halftime Show -- without the game.

Krauthamer suggests that Obama consider doing a Napoleon and coronate himself.

But let's return to the notion of this highest-stakes game. What is the strategy?

Walk a thin line: Man of the people, man of singular ability, a new breed, but not too "other."

Eli Saslow in the Washington Post puts it this way:

Succeed here, in front of the largest Democratic National Convention crowd in nearly 50 years, and Obama's speech will be remembered as one of the most powerful moments in modern politics, a perfect launch into the final stage of the general election. Fail, and Obama risks fueling Republicans' criticism that he is an aloof celebrity, fond of speaking to big crowds but incapable of forming genuine connections.

There will be more speeches -- Al Gore, Howard Dean, Bill Richardson. And song -- Stevie Wonder, Sheryl Crow, Michael McDonald and Will.i.am. Obama is to go on after 10 p.m.

On a night that is the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream Speech."

A historic date, a historic candidacy -- the first African-American to be nominated by a major political party in American history.

Writing in Politico, former Inquirer reporter Carrie Budoff Brown, says what's riding for the Democrats:

It is a choice freighted with risks. It depends on winning, over the next ten weeks, many Americans whom polls show are reluctant to embrace a movement that places its faith in intangible qualities — charisma, vision, capacity for growth — rather than in such prosaic traits as national experience or long-term identification with a policy agenda.

So what does Obama need to do? I'm not sure even cyberspace has enough for me to link the free advice he's been given the past few days. Here's one suggestion. Silence guys like this GOP consultant writing in Time:

"Obama reminds them of the Ivy League whiz kids they've dealt with at work during the latest downsizing. They look at him and see another bloodless young achiever coming down from the top floor to fix the ailing machine-tool company. They listen to his polished pitch in the employee cafeteria, and he wins some converts. But after he is finished, a few old-timers exchange knowing glances and mutter to one another about how young this hot shot is. Somebody makes a cynical and unkind remark about affirmative action. Deep down, they think he'd rather hit the executive gym for a cardio workout during lunch hour than share a cheesesteak and beer with the hourly workforce."

Earlier: Where Was This Guy in 2004?

Daniel Rubin Inquirer Columnist
About this blog
Blinq is a news commentary blog featuring contributions from Inquirer Metro columnists Kevin Riordan and Daniel Rubin.

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