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The Rhetoric Of 44

So . . . I hear there was an Inauguration.

There is much about this new Presidency concerning which we will have to suspend judgment; it has only just begun, after all. But in addition to the swearing-in, the big event, of course, was the Inaugural Address. Given Barack Obama’s speechmaking fame, I expected big things. But I have to say, I was disappointed. And it would appear that I am not the only one. The President’s performance as an orator was impressive enough but the speech was less so.

Fellow Arena contributor David Biespiel–who rather approves of the new President–takes issue with me, but I find his arguments unavailing and alas, it would appear that while George W. Bush bequeathed the spotlight to his successor, he may also have bequeathed his gift for garbled syntax to Mr. Biespiel.

On a more serious note, let attention be paid to Mr. Biespiel’s distaste for rendition–a distaste which others share and which, I insist, should make a certain confirmation hearing quite interesting indeed.

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