May 14, 2008

Memories of Bob Dole

When I was at Netscape the company invited the Republican Presidential nominee, Bob Dole, to come speak at the company during his campaign. We were all reminded that it wasn't an ideological thing, it was just they had a slightly more accommodating stance on the company's pet issue which was the export of products that used cryptography. Unfortunately Bob Dole was busy so he sent the VP candidate, Jack Kemp, in his place. I don't remember much about Mr. Kemp aside from his hair and recall absolutely nothing of his speech.

What I do remember is the other politician that spoke that day: Pete Wilson. I remember it was awful and confusing. Just random sentences strung together and uttered without any sort of structure. There was the "tough on crime sentence" followed by the "tax cuts for everyone!" sentence followed by the next. Then I realized he wasn't speaking to us. The news that night would show some 5 or 10 second sound bite so he was just slapping them all together in a big pile and calling it a speech. We were just a prop.

I was reminded of this today when I read a story about Hillary Clinton's campaign stop in West Virginia:

A steep descent brings Clinton's plane to Charleston's hilltop airport. After an appropriate wait, she steps from the plane and pretends to wave to a crowd of supporters; in fact, she is waving to 10 photographers underneath the airplane's wing. She pretends to spot an old friend in the crowd, points and gives another wave; in fact, she is waving at an aide she had been talking with on the plane minutes earlier.

I guess this saves everyone a lot of time so it really makes sense in a sad sort of way.

Posted by thom at May 14, 2008 05:30 PM
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