Commentary Magazine


Contentions

Obama’s Speaker’s Block

Barack Obama now sheepishly admits what I pointed out two days ago: The man who scolded Americans for speaking English exclusively — speaks English exclusively: “I know because I don’t speak a foreign language. It’s embarrassing!” he said.

But hey, when you pander, it’s the thought that counts. It’s worth noting that there is no “change” to be found in Obama’s empty championing of American bilingualism. In 2002, Bill Clinton said, “I hope very much that I’m the last president in American history who can’t speak Spanish.” You have to give it to Bill. With some clever phraseology he managed in the space of a sentence to successfully convey what Obama turned into a problematic soundbite, and did so while promising nothing and acknowledging his own limitations.

The point is Obama now stumbles on the gimmes, the rhetorical staples that have been the Left’s bread and butter since the 1960′s. He seems to be suffering from the oratorical equivalent of writer’s block. His shifting positions have left him not knowing quite what to say, and as a result he’s losing touch with how to say anything. He now backs away from previous pronouncements, calling them, “overheated,” while failing to introduce anything new and “leg-tingling” into the mix. If the primary was Obama’s precocious debut masterpiece, might the general election be turning into his sophomore jinx?



Join the discussion…

Are you a subscriber? Log in to comment »

Not a subscriber? Join the discussion today, subscribe to Commentary »





Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor to our site, you are allowed 8 free articles this month.
This is your first of 8 free articles.

If you are already a digital subscriber, log in here »

Print subscriber? For free access to the website and iPad, register here »

To subscribe, click here to see our subscription offers »

Please note this is an advertisement skip this ad
Clearly, you have a passion for ideas.
Subscribe today for unlimited digital access to the publication that shapes the minds of the people who shape our world.
Get for just
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor, you are allowed 8 free articles.
This is your first article.
You have read of 8 free articles this month.
YOU HAVE READ 8 OF 8
FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
for full access to
CommentaryMagazine.com
INCLUDES FULL ACCESS TO:
Digital subscriber?
Print subscriber? Get free access »
Call to subscribe: 1-800-829-6270
You can also subscribe
on your computer at
CommentaryMagazine.com.
LOG IN WITH YOUR
COMMENTARY MAGAZINE ID
Don't have a CommentaryMagazine.com log in?
CREATE A COMMENTARY
LOG IN ID
Enter you email address and password below. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you provide.