Saturday, August 25, 2012

Speech Watch


As an adjunct professor at John F. Kennedy University in Orinda, Calif., I assigned and encouraged my students to watch, listen to and dissect speeches. This was all directed toward their ending the semester by writing and delivering their own speeches.

A well-written speech will have a clear beginning and end and expert use of what I call “internal summary.” A speech carefully crafted is a work of art.

Regardless of your party affiliation, this week’s Republican Convention provides an excellent opportunity to see and hear some outstanding speakers. In a presidential convention the speeches and speaker messages should support the party platform.

The line up of 34+ speakers for the Republican convention is impressive with the appearances across four nights, although due to limited network TV coverage the public will only be able to view them Tuesday through Thursday and then only one hour each night. FOX News coverage seems like it will be more extensive and programming can be verified through www.foxnews.com/RNC.

Already commentators are reflecting on what the superb lineup of speakers will reveal. Today, Peggy Noonan in her Wall Street Journal column speculated on what we can expect from some of the speakers. She hopes “That Gov. Chris Christie brings his Garden State brio, that he is bodacious, funny and pointed, and that people say the next day, “Man, Obama-Christie really opened up a can of  Jersey on him.”

Noonan also muses that Paul Ryan is young and since the voters have already “had a bad experience with young” that his writers anticipating that will craft his speech to brand the positives of being only 42!

So with such an impressive line up, here are my picks of who to watch or at least listen to.  Monday: John Sununu and Mike Huckabee; Tuesday: Chris Christie, Susana Martinez, Ann Romney and Bobby Jindal; Wednesday: Pam Bondi, Jeb Bush, Condoleezza Rice, and Paul Ryan; Thursday: Marco Rubio and Mitt Romney. (This line up may shift depending on Hurricane Isaac which, as I write, is barreling toward Puerto Rico.)

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