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And The Nominees Are ...

Friday, Aug. 29, 2008 3:56 AM

I caught some of Barack Obama's speech in front of the Democratic National Convention, and was suitably impressed. There's a lot of positive language and promising proposals - a welcome change from the verbal bumbling of President Bush.

We'll see how it plays out over the next couple of weeks, of course, but John McCain needs to deliver an equally stirring speech at next week's Republican National Convention.

One of the canards that keeps surfacing in this campaign is the question as to whether a candidate is 'ready to lead.'

Just what does that mean? Hillary tried to define it by saying she was ready for a phone call at 3AM; John McCain made noises about a 'commander in chief test.' Barack Obama talks about diplomacy and goes on a world tour to positive reviews.

But is leadership simply a question of how our allies abroad view us? Is it a question of intelligence? Preparedness? Level-headedness and a cool temper under fire?

Clearly, it's a standard and an image that America hasn't figured out, because a majority of us thought a smirking, irresponsible frat boy had enough brain cells left after his cocaine-infused college days to be a unifying figure.

Show me the breadth of your knowledge and that you've got sound policies on deck, and it'll do a better job of selling your leadership skills than rhetorical posturing.

And the pundits are still horribly wrong, guessing through most of the past few days that McCain's pick for his running mate would be Tim Pawlenty.

Pawlenty has since let it be known that he's not the choice.

So the punditry promptly exhibits their trademark short attention span and starts gushing over Alaska Governor Sara Palin, with some outlets declaring this as an affirmative, even though the McCain campaign has not confirmed the choice.

The Huffington Post made a point of showing Katie Couric stopping by their 'relaxation station' at the convention, whereupon Couric demonstrated her prowess at yoga.

It's too bad Couric's journalistic skills aren't on the same level.

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