Friday, August 29, 2008
Obama's Acceptance Speech at the DNC: Gasp! That Guy Is Good!
Yesterday was the closest I will probably be to attending a major-party convention, and I only hope the Democrats or Republicans will not make us wait another hundred years before favoring the capital of our state with another.
Since I visit Denver only a few times a year, I found it cheaper and more convenient to drive to where the parking is free and take the light rail. This time I went to the Mineral station, at the end of one of the two major lines. There were so many cars that I had to park at the outer edge of the overflow area. Getting off at 16th and California, I saw that the 16th Street Mall was a great place for people-watching and taking pictures. Convention-goers were all over the place, and were no doubt reassured to see policemen outnumbering demonstrators. Many Democrats still have bitter memories of Chicago 1968, where rioting went out-of-control, handing the presidential election over to the Republican, Richard Nixon. Denver is the largest Democratic stronghold in Colorado, so visitors coming for the convention never had to worry about whether they would receive a warm welcome.
Trios Enoteca is directly across the street from Union Station (the light rail stop there was temporarily closed for security reasons until the convention was over). All bloggers, regardless of party, were welcome, and I noticed that Republicans, libertarians, and other conservatives usually stuck together with their own kind, while Democrats hung out with other liberals. I was one of the exceptions, as I was determined to shamelessly promote my own blog. One of the principal organizers, Zombyboy of ResurrectionSong, came incognito, and his loyal friends were careful not to blow his cover. Mr. Lady of Whisky in My Sippy Cup made an ideal hostess, and extended a warm welcome to all. This was a golden opportunity to hobnob with people who have been following the convention from the beginning, like Stephen Green of Vodkapundit, who also writes for Pajamas Media. I asked him if he would go to Minneapolis-St. Paul for the Republican convention, and he said yes, he'll be leaving Colorado on Sunday. I tried calling Walter in Denver and Darren Copeland to repentance for not posting on their blogs as often as their readers would like. The Other McCain (Robert Stacy, who said he was distantly related to the Senator from Arizona), Left off Colfax, Alan Silverberg of You2Gov.com, Klaus Holzapfel (originally from Darmstadt, Germany) of conceptbakery.com, Charlie Martin, M.V. Brown and Tessa of My Left Nutmeg (liveblogging at the scene because they had laptops with wireless Internet access), Wheels within Wheels, complete with ukulele, Andy of World Wide Rant, and others too numerous to mention made at least a cameo appearance.
What can I say about The Speech? The back room where the TV was located was so packed that people were sitting on the floor. The Democrats ate it up, and Obama succeeded in his design of making it the climax of the DNC, something that would motivate rank-and-file members to man the phone banks, pass out pamphlets, tell their friends, and keep sending those checks to his presidential campaign. I sat with the conservatives and Republicans, and they provided a different kind of instant commentary known in the trade as fisking.;-) We shook our heads, wondering how Sen. Obama would be able to come up with the money to pay for these extravagant promises, pointed out contradictions in his narrative, and despaired that John McCain would ever be able to pull out all the stops and play his audience like a fine pipe organ the way that Barack did last night. This was the first time I heard an Obama speech from beginning to end, and while he said little that was new, I could sense that he had his audience of over 80,000 at Invesco Field at Mile High (along with millions of Democrats watching on television) in the palm of his hand.