Thursday, April 2, 2009

Rant of the Week: Teleprompter Tales

Media commentators and bloggers have been making much ado about nothing lately concerning President Barack Obama’s teleprompter usage. Rush Limbaugh recently remarked, “off prompter, Obama can’t speak.”

A Facebook group called Barack Obama’s Teleprompter has emerged and now has over 1,500 members. The group blurb states, “I have a full-time job in telling President Barack Obama what do say. Since he can't do without me wherever he goes, I work often! However, I still manage to find a little time to get on Facebook."

Hm, I’m not sure if these folks remember the little thing called the presidential debates, in which Barack Obama presented his vision for America sans teleprompter (and won all three rounds, mind you). Is it such a bad thing for a President to appear prepared and polished in his speeches? Or should we simply expect a certain amount of bushisms a la Dubya’s “off-the-cuff” style? Obama spent nearly two years on the campaign trail giving speeches largely without a teleprompter, not to mention his Harvard law education and background as a constitution professor. Do we really have to question whether he can speak without some sort of technological aid? As our nation's top representative, it is imperative that the President be cautious and careful about the words that come out of his mouth.

This latest right-wing criticism screams of desperation. Surely, there are ideological disagreements that Republicans can articulate based on real policy concerns and the actual substance of his speeches. This cheap attack just makes them look like small-minded sore losers.

No comments: