A couple months ago I was listening to an interview on Public Radio with an Associated Press writer (don't quote me but I think it was Denis Gray or maybe James Fallows). He was commenting about how with so many political consultants and pollsters surrounding our Presidents these days that rarely will a politician say anything without considering the numbers.
He said that George W. Bush won the election on one sentence, "You may not agree with my policies, but I stand on my word." Of course as one would expect, this slogan was a calculated response to the accusations of John Kerry's "wishy-washy" stances.
The writer went on to say that Robert F. Kennedy's remarks to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. assassination would never have been possible in today's age of sound bites, because to go "off book" can be a "political career disaster." I assume the writer was being ironic, although he did not mention that two months later, Robert F. Kennedy was gunned down during a celebration following his victory in the California primary, June 5, 1968.
I finally got around to downloading an mp3 recording of Robert F. Kennedy's address and found it to be very moving.
Even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget
falls drop by drop upon the heart,
until, in our own despair,
against our will,
through the awful grace of God.