Well, let me just say, as I listened to the speech replayed and read reax, I was taken back to my full time teaching days and discussions about using other's work as your own, and just copying and pasting quotes. Good gravy, Obama's speech sounded like something a sophomore in high school or at best a freshman in college would write. Think I am the only one? Check this out:
When a president recites Emma Lazarus in a speech on immigration—and recites not merely a fragment or two but virtually the entire length of "the New Colossus"—one is inclined to conclude that his speech was written by someone who has just graduated from high school and has a young head brimming with social studies. This being President Obama, however, one can conclude that he will have written a fair portion of the speech himself, and, in so concluding, one would be struck forcefully by how banal the speech was. It was, if one can say such a thing, the acme of boilerplate, so utterly conventional was it in its narrative of American immigration. The speech was basically a thing of sops: In itself, it was a sop to the organized Latino lobby, which knows that nothing will happen before the November elections, and which knows, also, that next year—with likely GOP gains in Congress—nothing will happen either. (They are grasping, I understand, at Obama's private hints that he will take care of the lobby, in some palliative way, in the lame-duck session of Congress in December.)
The speech was also a sop to the unions, in its attack on businesses that seek to stay competitive by hiring illegal immigrants, thus circumventing a raft of government-mandated additions to the cost of doing business (Exhibit A: the minimum wage): "Those who hire illegal immigrants put law-abiding businesses at a disadvantage." As if on cue, the SEIU's response to the speech consisted of a number of GOP-bashing declarations, including this one: "The GOP isn't on the side of small business owners who follow the law only to see that law skirted by opportunistic employers that exploit immigrants and drive down standards for workers."
Obama concluded with the usual pro forma appeal for bipartisanship—an appeal that sounded particularly anemic
Wow, so much for inspiring oratory.