Level Playing Field, The Hindu, 17 November
I woke early on Wednesday morning to check the results. First, I was relieved. Romney had failed, and more importantly the bigots and obscurantists who backed him had failed. Then I watched Obama’s victory speech, and what I felt was something other than relief.
The speech was dubbed “magnificent” on the Guardian’s front page by Jonathan Freedland, who hailed it, as did others, as a return to the bold, inspirational style of 2008 and a harbinger of a more ambitious second term.
I understand why people in the US clutch at straws, but I wonder how many times Freedland and other liberal commentators will clutch at this particular straw before they realise that it is in fact only a straw?
What struck me about Obama’s “soaring rhetoric” was just how rhetorical it was, and especially how heavily it leaned on the rhetoric of American exceptionalism. Read more