July 04, 2006

Why the internet rules and stinks.

In researching the previous post on Obama's speech, I came across "Faithfull Progressive", a blog that claims that Obama was criticizing the Religious Right as much as the Democrats. I don't think that that is correct, although he clearly defines ground rules for a dialogue between conservative christians and progressives that would not please the cynical exploiters that are prominent among the Religious Rights' leadership. But it seems to me that he addresses his two audiences - Democrats and strongly religious people - in a positive manner, urging cooperation. He's not trying to get the Religious Right to change what it's doing...

Fine, that is a disagreement in analysis. But, having just read the speech, I noticed that "Faithful Progressive" (FP) isn't exactly faithful in quoting the speech (which he does link to at the end). He quotes Obama as saying:
"While I've already laid out some of the work that progressives need to do on this, I that the conservative leaders of the Religious Right will need to acknowledge a few things as well."(sic)

The speech that he links to actually says:
"While I've already laid out some of the work that progressive leaders need to do, I want to talk a little bit about what conservative leaders need to do -- some truths they need to acknowledge. "

Now, I don't know what possessed FP to change the quote. Perhaps the transcript on the website changed in stead, since FP's quote is clearly incomplete and was perhaps cleaned up? Without authoritative sources, I can't judge who's right. But from the entire tone of the speech, I sincerely doubt that Obama was attacking the Religious Right, the actual political organisation. He was talking more broadly than that, I think. So I suspect that the transcript on Obama's web is more true to the actual speech.

In any case, it's a good example of why you can't trust what you read. Especially when it's on the internet...

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Blogger Faithful Progressive said...

I quote dthe text of the speech--directly from the Senator's ite. I don't see any significance in the change. I have also edited my long post since posting it. Just trying to make it more readable.


1:49 AM  
Blogger Endorendil said...

Interesting. Did you find which one of the two transcripts is correct?

The difference does seem to matter, in my view. In the transcript that is on the site now, Obama turns his attention to conservative christian leaders in general, pointing out how they can more gainfully interact with progressives. This makes perfect sense since he is talking to a christian public that happens to be highly interested in traditionally Democratic issues.

In the transcript you quoted, it seems like he wants to point out what the Religious Right should do in order to be more effective in convincing people about their standpoints. That makes no sense, since Obama doesn't want the RR to get better at getting its point across, and neither does his audience (the religious left).

It's the difference between interpreting the second part of his speech as an attack on the Religous Right or as a prescription to the religious left on how to get better at cooperating with the secular left. Which is just the mirror point of the first part of the speech.

12:44 AM  
Blogger Callooh said...

to quote my 13y old "no duh" -

Don't trust everything you read, don't trust MOST of what you read - ESPECIALLY on the internet. This needs to be said?! Like dude, this IS the internet - home to "serious" information, kinda like Mad TV & Fox news...

I tend to read more than I write - opinion wise anyhow ;-) - and try to listen more than I speak - easier that way, less words to eat later.

and the only thing I quote these days are poems and novels - fewer people actually bother to look them up... :-)

1:37 AM  

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