In Praise of C-Span During a Convention

I was sitting at my house watching the Democratic convention, bowl of popcorn in my lap to watch the prime-time speeches. After Bill Clinton’s barn burner, the super on MSNBC said Senator John Kerry would speak soon. Cool, I thought. I didn’t know he was speaking tonight.

When Kerry was on, MSNBC kept playing its annoying jingle music. I thought…what’s this? I want to hear this guy. I switched over to C-Span, which I had nearly forgot would be running all the speeches without running commentary.

I kept it on C-Span after that, and also caught Tammy Duckworth, the Iraq war vet whose legs were blown off when her helicopter was hit by a RPG. I also caught the speech of a former Republican and retired military officer who is now associated with the Franklin Pierce Law Center in New Hampshire. He was powerful and interesting, and it was a blather-free zone.

Among my thoughts: That the Dems wasted their keynoter on former Virginia Governor Mark Warner, whose speech had all the fire of a power-point presentation on risk management. Duckworth or Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer would have been a far better pick. Duckworth in particular was riveting.

You would have had to be watching C-Span to know those speeches were any good if you couldn’t be in the arena. Because the nets didn’t carry either one of their speeches.

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