I read this stuff and just wonder what some folks are thinking. The idea that Bernie’s “hype” is somehow different than any other candidates “hype” is ridiculous. Criticizing a candidate’s stump speeches for being formulaic and simplistic is completely unrealistic and a professional commentator should know better.
Campaign speeches do two things. First, and most obvious, is to define the candidate relative to his or her opponents and generate enthusiasm for the candidate. This isn’t in any way an intellectual exercise, it is entirely emotional. It is about outlining what the candidate stands for in broad strokes, not about the details. Can you imagine what an analytical, fact based speech would look like? Well, we’ve already seen that… Remember Ross Perot with his charts and graphs? No, I didn’t think you did, because it was as exciting as watching paint dry.
In actuality, Bernie Sanders has been more specific about exactly what his plan is than any other candidate. Typically candidates try not to be too specific because it just opens them up to attacks from their opponents. The idea is to be as vague as possible about the hows and inspiring about the generalities. Certainly that was the Clinton campaign’s intention initially. Only because the Sanders campaign was so specific about his agenda has Clinton’s people had to talk more about the specifics.
If one wishes to see what Bernie Sanders proposes, just go to his website Bernie Sanders Campaign This is not secret information but details like this do not belong in a stump speech… That would put people to sleep. Speeches are to people’s hearts not minds. They are all about why you should love me, why you should be scared of the other folks. No candidate doesn’t used this strategy.
Additionally, trying to pin down any candidate in the minute details of how they will actualize their agendas is also unrealistic. Sure, like Hillary Clinton, there will be areas on which they are real experts. No one in the 2016 is going to stand up to Clinton on foreign affairs. But the President of the United States is really a high level manager and big picture thinker. He or she is not the person who has to work out the details of how to do something. They hire experts for that. What they do is outlines the direction, they work out the big picture agenda and then find specialist who can help them work out legislative proposals to send to Congress. Even then, it isn’t the President who typically writes the actual legislation any more than the President actually votes on it. That’s the job of Congress. The President sets the direction and then, as leader of his or her Party, gets the Party members in Congress to make these proposals happen.
Bernie Sanders has been very specific about the initiatives his administration would take. More so than any other candidate… But his current team is about getting him elected. His eventual Cabinet will not be the same people for the most part. It’s a different set of skills. When so-called pundits sit back and take shots at the candidates with criticisms that are just unrealistic and actually distort an understanding of he real process, they reveal once again that it is about generating readership or viewership rather than doing reporting that enhances an understanding of the real issues. This article is one such report.
Here is the original article.
Why are some of us immune to the Bernie hype and not others? Here’s a philosophical examination.