Clinton as “Big Watermelon”

Bill Clinton’s memoir has been sanitized for Chinese readers. Elsewhere, the book tops U.K. parliamentarians’ lists, but won’t be read by David Remnick or Dale Peck.

Speaking of the former president, I’ve been braving David Brooks’ idiotic commentary at PBS to watch 3-4 hours of Democratic National Convention speeches the last two nights. It’s no surprise that Clinton is a powerful orator, although you forget after he’s been away for four years what it’s like to listen to a president who can form coherent sentences and avoid bungled cliches, not to mention construct a convincing argument. He gave a rousing speech night before last.

But if you watch only one DNC speech — and you can catch them online at C-Span — it should be Barack Obama’s. The man is everything he’s rumored to be. Here’s the transcript. And here’s one of the most stirring sections:

Go into any inner-city neighborhood, and folks will tell you that government alone can’t teach kids to learn.

They know that parents have to teach, that children can’t achieve unless we raise their expectations and turn off the television sets and eradicate the slander that says a black youth with a book is acting white. They know those things . . . .


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