Thank you to Doug Plummer for pointing me (via Twitter) to James Fallows’ piece for the Atlantic on Barack Obama’s speeches.
Fallows points out that Obama’s speeches diverge dramatically from what we think of as contemporary rhetoric because, instead of revitalizing, reinforcing, and building on familiar concepts and beliefs, they present new concepts. They are political rhetoric outside of the box.
I’m hoping that Obama is (in addition to cleaning up our international reputation and getting us humane, affordable healthcare) going to change the way we speak and talk and make clarity and substance (rather than ranting and raving) the standard. While I’m waiting, I’m going to whip out my own editorial flyswatter and start whomping buzzwords.
Excuse me, I think I hear a “Social Media” fly in here somewhere.