The Washington Post has an op-ed piece today called “What the Telepromter Teaches.” I was expecting another rant about Obama not being authentic or real. But instead, I was treated to a tribute to writing and one great title phrase:
Those writers and commentators who prefer the unscripted, who use “rhetoric” as an epithet, who see the teleprompter as a linguistic push-up bra, do not understand the nature of presidential leadership or the importance of writing to the process of thought.I am glad that someone took this non-issue and gave it an intellectual interpretation. I, for one, am tired of off-the-cuff statements that led us to tell terrorists to “bring it on.” Authentic? Yes. Stupid? Also yes. I’m thinking that we give thoughtful, crafted statements and governance a try. The piece’s writer, Michael Gerson, is no Obama fan, but he recognizes that “good writing has an authenticity of its own.” I couldn’t agree more.
Governing is a craft, not merely a talent. It involves the careful sorting of ideas and priorities. And the discipline of writing expressing ideas clearly and putting them in proper order is essential to governing.