At a time when we have just seen the astonishing Obama deliver yet another mesmeric speech, this one in Cairo, it is depressing to compare it with what we are seeing from politicians in the UK. It is a comparison that flatters few of them.
Obama, in an unbelievably sensitive environment, gets the words right, as we have come to expect, but, even more important, the delivery. His calm, measured tone, his authority and confidence as he says things never contemplated or dared by previous Presidents.
And, since most of his audience will be getting his words via interpreters, it his body language and tone that creates the impact, that in effect is the message. What a message.
Compare this with the fevered response of most of our politicians in an unbelievably sensitive environment of their own making. Few, ‘guilty or not’ have handled their expense explanations with dignity. Searching so hard for the right words, they have protested too much.
Defending the indefensible, as far as your audience is concerned, or in a pitch responding to the unanswerable question, calls for few words -assume they will be mangled by an interpreter-and an Obama- like manner. And rehearsal..