Friday, August 29, 2008


Obama God! Democrats build a temple for Barack

By Peter Mckay In Denver

Times UK

29th August 2008

Barack Obama was mocked in the American press yesterday for making the most important speech of his life on a set decked out like an ancient temple.

Finally nominated as the first black candidate for the U.S. presidency, he moved the Democratic Party Convention from the conference hall to an 80,000-seater football stadium for his landmark address.

His challenge was to turn his trademark soaring rhetoric into simple ideas to improve the lives of hard-pressed American families. But the Greek pillars of his backdrop prompted ridicule before he stood up to speak early today.

The New York Post portrayed him mocked up in the style of Frankie Howerd's toga-clad TV romp Up Pompeii!, threatening to tip this historic moment into bathos - the Greek term for dignity descending into farce.

And rival John McCain's camp was quick to make more fun of him. Republican spokesman Danny Daz called the set - designed by Britney Spears's concert team - 'the Temple of Obama' and observed sarcastically: 'It's only appropriate that Barack Obama would descend from the Heavens and spend a little time with us mere mortals.' [YES WE CAN!]

Held at Denver's Invesco Field stadium at Mile High, home of the Denver Broncos, the extravagant event before a full audience and tens of millions of TV viewers was also to feature performances by Stevie Wonder and Sheryl Crow.

American Idol contestant Jennifer Hudson was to sing the national anthem.

Democrats wondering if the kitsch setting wasn't a mistake are comforted by the thought that John F Kennedy's nomination acceptance event was held at the Los Angeles Coliseum, and it too was ridiculed.

Party officials fearing what Americans might think of 'Obamapolis' say privately that it was dreamed up before his recent 'rock star' visit to Berlin, where he drew a crowd of 200,000 - and Republican criticism for being out of touch with ordinary Americans.

Had they anticipated that, the affair in Colorado would have been more low-key.

McCain's set next week in St Paul, Minnesota, is stark by comparison: He'll speak before a giant stars and stripes.

But for Obama, the Greek columns had a twin appeal: his speech came 45 years to the day since civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr's historic 'I have a dream' address at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, which also boasts Greek pillars. And Lincoln is America's favourite president - especially for blacks, whom he released from slavery.

With Americans proving resistant to Obama's appeal, his task was to pull off a speech with the same historic impact as Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, while addressing the 'kitchen table' concerns that voters are worrying about.

Obama seeks to stand up for what are called the 'middle classes' - what in Britain we would call the hard-working poor. He promises to turn the economy around and make the nation safer.
But his grandiose style lends itself to accusations of hubris - the Greek word for pride before a fall - and he was advised to keep things simple as he made an impassioned call for change. [YES WE CAN!]

However, Obama also had to top Bill Clinton's barnstorming performance on Wednesday night.
The former president, who had described Obama privately as 'a roll of the dice' as a presidential prospect, now oozed warmth for Barack - far more so than wife Hillary the night before.


Obama Speech Stage Resembles Ancient Greek Temple

ABC News

August 26, 2008

DENVER (Reuters) - Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's big speech on Thursday night will be delivered from an elaborate columned stage resembling a miniature Greek temple.




"[Greek] Patron god of the Arts, the gift of prophecy and also connected with light (which in Greek also can be translated illumination). ['THE ONE'] He was born on the island Delos by Leto, a Titan's daughter, and Zeus. The island was to be the most sacred of islands, and ruins of many temples can still be seen there. His sister was Artemis, the goddess of hunting and protecter of young women.

After he killed the huge snake Python [HILLARY CLINTON] in Delphi by the mountains Parnassus, the site was dedicated to him. There, the Omphalos, the navel, stood - a point believed by the ancient Greeks to be the centre of the earth. [DENVER MILE HIGH STADIUM] His oracle there was a place many people, commonmen and rulers, came to consult the priestess, Pythia, [MICHELLE OBAMA?] about their future."

"...In many ways, Apollo personified the perfect man according to ancient Greek standards: he would entertain the other gods by playing the lyre, and he was also a brilliant archer and runner, considered to be the first winner at the Olympic Games. He protected young men, was a god of agriculture and also was a healer. He was also thought to be the most beautiful of gods."

"...Apollo can easily be considered one of the most important gods in Greek mythology. Seven was Apollos holy number, and he was connected to the calendar. The tripod was one of his symbols, and he was often referred to as Phoibos = the cleanser."

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