Teaching as an adjunct can be a lot of fun. It is also challenging. As I have encountered a number of situations, I realize such a blog can be helpful, both to me and to others.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Campaign Stategy

It’s time for another look at politics and how it ties in to my public speaking class. Recently, Sarah Palin has gone on the attack with claims that O’Bama pals around with terrorists and then some toned down comments. I find the comments to be inappropriate. Moreover, there is little doubt in my mind that the attacks are actually that o McCain and his strategists and not those of Sarah Palin.

I see the attacks as the last act of a desperate man. The attacks signal a change in strategy and as for as I am concerned, indicate that McCain is now more interested in winning the election than in the principles he so dearly claims to represent. Both candidates had stayed away from such tactics (remember O’Bama’s reaction when it came out that Palin’s oldest daughter, an unmarried 17 year old was pregnant? He refused to useit and told his people to back off). McCain claims to be a maverick, is willing to buck party principals for his own beliefs, but not when it comes to winning an election. I think that it is going to cost McCain in the long run and while he may end up getting some undecided votes, I think he will lose more. Again, that is the way I see it.

I am sure that most McCain supporters will claim that Palin’s comments are fair game. They are accurate and people need to be made aware, they will claim. The fact that O’Bama and his people do not like them simply shows how accurate these claims are and that they have hit a nerve. In the end, it will end up bringing more voters to support McCain-Palin than the few they might lose. Again, that is how I see McCain supporters viewing the comments.

I tell my students that when you give a speech, everyone sees it and hears it slightly differently. What one member of the audience likes another one will dislike. While one member might think you spoke too loud, there will be someone else who will claim you did not speak loud enough. In politics, obviously a lot of how you view something has to do with whom you are supporting. However, what about the undecideds? I am sure that they all don’t see such changes in strategy the same way and the challenge for politicians is to decide what changes ultimately bring them more voters.

I am curious to see how tonight’s debate goes. With the problems concerning the economy and the market and with the changes in tactics, along with the town hall style of debating, it will be interesting to see how it all plays out. Like the politicians, I am interested in how it impacts the undecided voters. I will be using the information for class.