This was the low point, I thought:
"Republicans: No love, charity, duty, or patriotism." And I stopped listening.[A] freedom which asks only, what's in it for me, a freedom without a commitment to others, a freedom without love or charity or duty or patriotism, is unworthy of our founding ideals, and those who died in their defense.
Even the one time he threw a bone rightward, it was perfunctory:
And by the way, those of us who carry on his party's legacy should remember that not every problem can be remedied with another government program or dictate from Washington.Think about how a Bill Clinton speech would have treated that idea. He would have sold it, made you nod, made you believe that he believed it. Maybe given an example, paused, wagged his finger to emphasize the tough talk. Obama was just checking a box.
Peggy Noonan's critique of the convention as a whole is a good one:
There was the relentless emphasis on Government as Community, as the thing that gives us spirit and makes us whole. But government isn't what you love if you're American, America is what you love. Government is what you have, need and hire. Its most essential duties—especially when it is bankrupt—involve defending rights and safety, not imposing views and values. We already have values.The whole "'Government' is just a word for things we do together" idea may have more resonance these days as we all bowl alone, etc., but I'd like to think that it still sounds odd to Americans who get a sense of community from being part of churches, schools, families, workplaces, and, well, communities. As Iowahawk put it: "'Government' is just a word for things we do together. 'Corporation' is just a word for things we do together voluntarily."