Impressed But Not Sold

Ross on the speech:

John Derbyshire is right that Obama’s vision of how America ought to transcend our racial divisions is essentially left-wing, with whites and blacks joining hands against to raise taxes and government spending, while uniting against their common enemy, the wicked axis of corporations, lobbyists and special interests. But Obama’s candidacy is essentially left-wing; he’s attempting to be a liberal Reagan, not a difference-splitter like Bill Clinton, and I think our political moment is tilting sufficiently leftward that he might just succeed... But this is a conservative's quibble about a liberal politician's address; it's my way of saying "I wish Barack Obama were a little less left-wing," and it doesn't detract from the speech's overall impressiveness.

I do think the problem Jeremiah Wright creates for Obama's campaign remains unresolved, to some extent, since there was nothing Obama could say in a single speech that would undo the perception created by his long affiliation with Wright and his church ... But by using the Wright controversy as an opportunity to play up their candidate's strengths - as an orator, but more importantly as the rare politician who can deliver a thoughtful, nuanced speech and make you feel like he means it - the Obama campaign made some sweet-tasting lemonade out of some bitter-tasting lemons.