Obama Gets it Right in Ghana ...

Discussion in 'General Global Topics' started by DamnYankee, Jul 17, 2009.

  1. DamnYankee
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    DamnYankee No Neg Policy

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    Wrong in America

    In the spirit of American meritocracy, even those of us who usually line up in opposition to President Obama owe it to the man to point out when he's done something right. The President's speech in Accra, Ghana, last week was just such a success.

    What's most notable about Obama's July 11 remarks before the Ghanaian Parliament is how sharply they diverged from the usual products of the paint-by-numbers Obama speechwriting kit. That formula is usually as follows:

    Obama Gets it Right in Ghana … Wrong in America
     
  2. tigerbob
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    tigerbob Increasingly jaded.

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    The speech, for those of you who would like to see what he said and make your own minds up...

    [youtube]<object width="560" height="340"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/QkNpUEWIhd4&hl=en&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/QkNpUEWIhd4&hl=en&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="560" height="340"></embed></object>[/youtube]
     
  3. tigerbob
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    tigerbob Increasingly jaded.

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    I've just finished watching this and it's a very good speech. However the premise from the OP, if I remember correctly, is that he gets it right in Ghana and wrong in the U.S., and why should this be?

    Well, IMO, that's quite simple. This is a speech to a 3rd world country extolling the virtues of democracy, a free press, entrepreneurial spirit, good healthcare, a strong and independent judiciary to combat both civil crime and political corruption, and the ability to resolve differences through political debate and the ballot box, not via the AK47.

    It's a speech that would be dismissed in America as saying nothing new, just trotting out a string of platitudes that do little or nothing to address the issues faced in a first world economy (or even that are not at all relevant in the U.S.). In fact, the GOP often accuses him of doing exactly that here in the U.S.

    But in Kenya, it's a different matter. Africa is a continent thirsting for a speech of this kind. It is a speech with which probably 90% of posters on this board would agree. It's Democracy 101. This fact allows Obama to speak from the heart and on a sure footing.

    I think probably getting it right in Ghana and wrong at home is a bit harsh. I'll draw a parallel to describe what I mean. In the first case he is talking about how to drive a basic car and how an internal combustion engine works, and in the second he is talking about a Formula 1 car and how to tune it for maximum performance, the concept of aerodynamics and the affects of G force. It's the same broad principle but one is half a world away from the other.

    That said, there are plenty of countries in Africa that need to hear this message, and it is far more likely to resonate with them coming from Obama than from any other POTUS or western leader. He tackles the issues that need to be tackled head on, despite the fact that such a message will not be received well by certain African leaders, such as Robert Mugabe.

    So, credit where credit is due. A good speech, well made, to the right audience. :clap2:
     
  4. tigerbob
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    tigerbob Increasingly jaded.

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    I'll be interested to see how many views this thread gets.

    Probably very few since it's under the Global Topics heading, which is a shame as I'd like to hear other views on this speech. People are usually very ready to sound off about what Obama says but, since this speech was to the Ghanaian parliament I suspect it will be off the radar for most posters. Pity.

    Thanks for posting Allbiz. Very interesting.
     
  5. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    I made it through about 20 minutes.

    I'm sorry, I'm not that into it. I gave up when he went on about how Africa produces the least greenhouse gas but stands to be most affected by global warming, then tried to support wind towers.

    I still think Obama's nauseating.
     
  6. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    Oh wait..it gets better..."when children are dying because of a mosquito bite and mothers are dying in childbirth..."

    He's pushing abortion there. Good for him. You go, Obama.
     
  7. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    Ok, made it through. Also disturbed by his insistence that America will be right there with them all the way.

    Like we're with the people who want freedom in Iran? Like that?
     
  8. DamnYankee
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    DamnYankee No Neg Policy

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    First, you're welcome....

    To your above remarks, though I agree for the most part with the democratic process ("through political debate and the ballot box, not via the AK47"), the fact of the matter is, said debate and, as a consequence the ballot box, is controlled by the amount of money one has to spend. That is determined by who is most gifted in rhetorical skills. Whether or not that is democracy can most assuredly be argued. So why it is the GOP that accuses Obama of "trotting out a string of platitudes that do little or nothing to address the issues", or why getting it "wrong at home is a bit harsh" is beyond me.
     
  9. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    Talk (even excellent talk) is cheap.
     
    • Thank You! Thank You! x 1
  10. tigerbob
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    tigerbob Increasingly jaded.

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    Yes, it is.
     

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