Call it political Wednesday morning quarterbacking. Hillary Clinton gave the speech of her life at the Democratic National Convention Tuesday night.  But the media pundits gushed too much about what might have been for Clinton and even questioned Barack Obama – the actual Democratic nominee, which seems to have been lost by some in the media – and his wisdom in passing over his rival while selecting Joe Biden as his running mate. 

Forget the politicians, it’s the talking heads this election who are the real flip-floppers. Did they forget all Clinton did to get dissed by Obama? To paraphrase something my grandmother would say when I would act up in public right before she put the switch to my behind, Hillary Clinton showed her – er, um – arse during the primaries.  

It was Team Clinton who ran an overtly old school, negative campaign that was the antithesis of Obama’s change message. It was Team Clinton that overplayed the race card with racially-tinged rhetoric during the South Carolina primary. And it was Hillary herself who made the infamously uncouth gaffe when she said “Anything can happen in June,” a reference to Bobby Kennedy’s assassination during his historic, yet tragic bid for the White House in 1968.  

And of course there was Bill Clinton. Obama knew that even if Hillary toed the line and accepted her role as his Number Two (not evidenced by her actions as a verbal knife-wielding backstabber of Shakespearean proportions, by the way), that he couldn’t comfortably govern with Bill Clinton within the vicinity of the Oval Office. Just as the former president’s actions proved during this election, Bill Clinton’s words and actions would cast an insurmountable shadow over an Obama presidency.  So Hillary for Veep? Obama coolly said, “Hill, no.”  

All of this seems forgotten during the coverage of this election. That‘s painfully obvious as the major networks and cable news “journalists” are too busy talking to each other, analyzing ad nauseam strategy and tossing around toothless, baseless innuendo, instead of letting viewers actually hear the blasted speeches and make judgments for themselves.

Instead, we have to suffer through the filter of Pat Buchanan’s shenanigans, Wolf Blitzer’s absentmindedness and Brit Hume’s Droopy Dog drollness.  But if any of those fellows and their ilk used their long-term memory then they wouldn’t second-guess why Obama snubbed Hillary. Sure, Clinton could have been Obama’s vice president. Hell, if she delivered a Tuesday’ night’s speech earlier in the primary season, she could have been the Democratic nominee.  

But here’s the irony: Clinton always mocked Obama’s gift of oratory, saying that words and speeches don’t mean anything in politics.  She learned Tuesday night, that good speechifying inspires people to action. Inspiration is the engine of change. Ronald Reagan knew that. So did John Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln. Too bad Hillary learned that lesson too late.

Had she learned it sooner, perhaps she would have given a speech on Thursday night to accept the Democratic nomination.

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