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Presidential Rhetoric

The Poisoning of the American Presidential Debates

Bernard Rowan | Posted 10.11.2016 | Politics
Bernard Rowan

I don't know about anyone else, but I suspect many a viewing audience member, to say nothing of the studio audience, felt appalled by the display of ad hominem attacks in Sunday's presidential debate. There was some discussion of policy issues, but the ninety minutes felt like watching a domestic argument, a dysfunctional argument, and to say the least not a presidential debate.

Jason Linkins

State Of The Union Rebuttals: What's The Point? | Jason Linkins | Posted 01.24.2014 | Politics

As we've previously discussed in this space, State of the Union addresses are mostly useless. The pageantry is nice, and the speech itself provides ad...

Jason Linkins

Real Talk: State Of The Union Addresses Don't Actually Accomplish Very Much | Jason Linkins | Posted 02.12.2013 | Politics

Big presidential speeches do not help shape and shift opinion. The power of the bully pulpit is overrated. Presidents typically evince support for pol...

Professors Are Better Than That!

Patricia McGuire | Posted 12.08.2012 | DC
Patricia McGuire

Wow. No wonder higher education is in trouble! Do people really think that the president's lame rhetorical performance is emblematic of the teaching style of our nation's higher ed faculty?

The Big Ideas Deficit

Matthew Kohut | Posted 07.25.2011 | Politics
Matthew Kohut

The Sputnik moment for clean energy has not passed, and if reelected, President Obama may have another opportunity to do a big thing or two.

Obama's Rhetorical Inspirations: Presidents, Poets, and Hobbits

Aaron Zelinsky | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Aaron Zelinsky

Here are the ten sources behind the most memorable lines of Obama's address.

Why Smart Talkers Lose Debates and How Obama Can Beat McCain Anyway

Joseph Romm | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Joseph Romm

Debates are won by the candidate who presents the most compelling and persuasive character. If I can convince you I'm an honest, straight talker, you'll believe what else I say. If I can't, you won't.

Confident Optimism in Foreign Policy

Robert Schlesinger | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Robert Schlesinger

There are two fundamental schools of thought on foreign policy: suppose the Israelis launch a preemptive attack against Iran -- what does the United States do?

Both Made History, But One of Them Had to Win

Anne-Marie Slaughter | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Anne-Marie Slaughter

The nastiness of Obama's supporters' reactions to Hillary even in victory is another version of the politics he wants to end.