John McCain made his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, and others watched it so you didn’t have to. Some of them even liveblogged it.
Shakesville: Petulant ( video and speech transcript), Melissa (initial and later summations)
Pandagon: Jesse Taylor (liveblogging, and later reaction)
Obsidian Wings: publius’ thought the speech “biographical and substance free”, while Hilzoy runs McCain/Obama convention speech comparisons, examining what they do not what they say and the me-I-me-me-me aspects of both speeches.
Salon: Glenn Greenwald has two posts full of disgust at the way that the GOP turns the presidential elections into another iteration of culture wars and personality assassination every four years, and despair at the way that the Dems let them get away with it through fear of a negativity backlash.
Ezra Klein notes that an elegiac tone to Palin’s and the other Republican speeches about McCain
Nowhere did we hear of the great things John McCain would do, Instead, we heard, over and over, of the agonies John McCain endured. The presidency was presented tonight as if it were the Medal of Honor, or a purple heart. As if it is only a quirk of our political process that stops us from simply finding the longest serving prisoner of war and gifting him the keys to the office.
Of course, you must say this much: McCain’s recounting of his experiences as a prisoner of war remain powerful. But that was 40 years ago. He has now been campaigning for president for the better part of a decade. He needs more than a story. He needs a vision.
Yet tonight’s speech was all about him. The policies are his qualities, the vision is his story, the vice president is his understudy. For all that he mocks Obama for being “the one,” it is McCain who has rested the weight of a presidential candidacy atop his person. He is skilled at deflecting that perception, recasting one man’s candidacy as an expression of every man’s patriotism. But the common denominator in these humble asides remains McCain himself.