President Obama’s extraordinary speech

I didn’t think it possible. How would he be able to pull it off? For four years, President Obama has been criticized for being too cold, too weak, not bold enough, detached. The right has called him a socialist, a foreigner, a liar and has exuded hate and venom.

Nonetheless, at the Democratic Convention, it seemed that fortune was on his side. Michelle Obama fired up the democrats with a speech so dynamic, intelligent and heartfelt that it made people all over the country talk about it days later.  Even at NYU Abu Dhabi colleagues were commenting on how fantastic she was. President Clinton reminded everyone what a fantastic communicator he has always been, how well he understands the issues  and how easily he can explain them to an average person. Whatever his personal flaws, the man understands policy, and the concerns of people all over the country. He does not operate in a bubble, in some ivory tower, he gets it!

President Obama’s speech was the pinnacle of the convention and he gave it his all. Four years later, more mature and wiser after having been in office, he made it clear that this election would in fact be a turning point. That changes had to be made and were being made. That in the 21st century we could not continue to operate with a 20th century frame of mind. The world is changing, the United States must also find a new path to follow.

It’s the same dilemma facing Europe. Are we all in this together? Do we prefer to stand alone? Are there  values that we share that are worth fighting for?

I  hope all the forces of change will join together to make the transition one that will allow us to face the economic difficulties at home as well the global problems that are knocking on our door. It’s time for the middle class to stand up for what it wants to preserve and where it wants to go both in present and the future.



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