Obama’s Speech Underwhelms, Economic Failure Overwhelms

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


The verdict is in on Obama’s big speech and the verdict, from no less a political figure than James Carville, is underwhelming. In DNC 2012, Obama was completely blown away by Bill Clinton, who did what he does best, upstage Obama. And he upstaged him with a vengeance. People are still talking about Clinton’s speech and they don’t have a lot to say about Obama’s forgettable speech.

“Probably not the best speech of this convention…” James Carville said, and we all know whose speech he meant. But Obama wasn’t just upstaged by Bill Clinton. He was even upstaged by his wife. And before that he was upstaged by Biden’s “literal” buffoonery, which turned into a hashtag on Twitter.

Even the defenses from Obama’s partisans in the media were weak.

“It certainly wasn’t a speech full of soaring rhetoric like some of his speeches four years ago,” said CNN’s Anderson Cooper. “Some have been comparing it to a State of the Union almost in terms of going down the check list.”

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow called it a “big, big speech,” but added, “From this president, something we are not used to hearing: an overt request for a vote.”

The big headline this morning isn’t the speech, it’s the economy. Even the Guardian, which is quite friendly to Obama, began its report this way.

The US economy added just 96,000 new jobs in August, far below economists’ expectations and dealing a crushing blow to President Barack Obama after the close of the Democratic national convention.

Obama could not make anyone forget about the economy. He couldn’t even get the media to forget about the economy. The party is over and the real fight begins now.

Rather than going for inspiration, Obama dispensed a defensive speech that had more than a whiff of Biden to it. His defenses of his own policies and attacks on Romney were weak and fitful.

“My opponent and his running mate are new to foreign policy. But from all that we’ve seen and heard, they want to take us back to an era of blustering and blundering that cost us so dearly,” Obama said,

But what exactly can Obama claim credit for with his brilliant foreign policy?

On Twitter, MTV’s VMA awards beat Obama easily, showing just how little young voters care about 2012. And even the fact checks have abandoned the Messiah from Chicago.

The president said U.S. automakers are “back on top of the world.” Nope. GM has slipped back to No. 2 and is headed for third place in global sales this year, behind Toyota and Volkswagen.

How long until Obama slips to No. 2 and is headed for third place?