Wednesday, September 24, 2008

People Talkin'

Monday night we went to Cleveland State's Town Hall lecture series. Last year, we saw quite a few good talks - and this year kicked off with CNN's Christiane Amanpour and her husband, former Clinton-era State Department spokesman, James Rubin.

Each got their 30-45 minutes at the podium, along with a joint Q&A session afterwards.

The event was the best one I've seen. Clearly, they are a well-informed couple, and well spoken. I love when someone comes out without notes and clearly doesn't need them, even if they did.

Each had great insight to how the world has come to view us over the last decade. And while both were fairly objective, Amanpour was more so than her husband. I guess that's her job though as a journalist. Rubin was a little less partisan, but he didn't let that get in the way of his analysis of who we are perceived.

There was some discussion and questions about the upcoming election. Neither had predictions or wishes (ok, maybe Rubin did) - other than how to get ourselves out of the hole we've made for ourselves. But they both likened the U.S. to being a 12 year old when it comes to Iran. You just can't ignore them - it's not a good diplomatic strategy. The last 5-6 Secretary of States agree with them - save Ms. Rice.

The crowd was good and intelligent, but I guess you kind of figure people who goes to these things don't normally attend Monster Truck Rallys. Normally!

The next one is with Eleanor Clift, whom I really like. It's odd, but I never read her in Newsweek - mainly because we don't get Newsweek. But I do watch her on the McLaughlin Group weekly - and have for about the last two decades. How scary is that?

Anyhoo, she will be at the next lecture, which is before the election, so that should be good.

Song by: Lucinda Williams

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