Greatest speech givers of all time?

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# 1bigotry2 Sep 7 2008, 23:15 PM
This was just in light of Obama's Acceptance speech.. Some of you may not have seen it, but regardless of your political beliefs, your favoritism to one candidate or the other, or whatever, that speech was brilliantly written and brilliantly delivered by Obama. I truly believe that puts him in the same league as people like Hitler (strictly in terms of speech giving.. you can't deny Hitler was good) and Churchill.

Time to post youtube links of what you think the greatest speeches (or speech givers) of all time were!

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# 2Carbon Sep 7 2008, 23:17 PM
Hitler was incredibly charismatic and an extraordinary leader.

Haven't given a lot of though to who I'd consider an excellent speaker, to be honest.

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# 3^WiLdCarD^ Sep 7 2008, 23:28 PM
Jacques Chirac, ex-president of France, had a knack for grabbing my attention.

Such eloquence and charisma.

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# 4Techamber1 Sep 7 2008, 23:35 PM
QUOTE(bigotry2 @ Sep 7 2008, 17:15 PM) *

This was just in light of Obama's Acceptance speech.. Some of you may not have seen it, but regardless of your political beliefs, your favoritism to one candidate or the other, or whatever, that speech was brilliantly written and brilliantly delivered by Obama. I truly believe that puts him in the same league as people like Hitler (strictly in terms of speech giving.. you can't deny Hitler was good) and Churchill.

Time to post youtube links of what you think the greatest speeches (or speech givers) of all time were!


Obama one a great speech giver, yes.
Obama one of the greatest speech givers of all time, hardly.

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# 5Zonks Sep 7 2008, 23:38 PM
Ronald Reagan
FDR
Abraham Lincoln and Washington im sure would have come up but unfortunatly not, for obvious reasons sad.gif

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# 6Taterz Sep 7 2008, 23:39 PM
Churchill.

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# 7bigotry2 Sep 7 2008, 23:45 PM
QUOTE(techamer1 @ Sep 7 2008, 17:35 PM) *

Obama one of the greatest speech givers of all time, hardly.


Do you think thats because of the material he has to talk about? Nothing really provocative or devastating? (At least nothing compared to the world wars, cold war, etc..) Maybe?

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# 8triumph Sep 8 2008, 00:05 AM
I liked the speech that Eisenhower gave on the military industrial complex.
I've also heard a TR speech and most Americans who've taken a class or two in history should know about the story where hes shot and still gives a long speech.

I'd find it interesting to see who has written their own speeches and who just accepts speeches to be written for them from this list of greats we're collecting here. Surely writing ones own speech should be an important factor?

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# 9HaXxorIzed Sep 8 2008, 00:16 AM
Obama will become a legendary speaker in time, at the rate he is headed. Eisenhower's snappy, upfront presentation was also intriguing. Henry Clay is also quite interesting to study W.J Bryan as well.

I would have given a great deal to have heard the debate between WJB and Clarence Darrow, even if the outcome was not as ... preferred.

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# 10Namreg Sep 8 2008, 01:09 AM
Best speaker of all time -- Patrick Henry.

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# 11StiL ReY Sep 8 2008, 01:28 AM
I watched Obama's speech in gov the other day... It was ok but I'm dreading watching McCain's tongue.gif

And what about MLK?

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# 12Techamber1 Sep 8 2008, 02:18 AM
QUOTE(bigotry2 @ Sep 7 2008, 17:45 PM) *

Do you think thats because of the material he has to talk about? Nothing really provocative or devastating? (At least nothing compared to the world wars, cold war, etc..) Maybe?


That and the consideration that truly great speakers can turn people who would never even consider doing something to doing it. Go look at Martin Luther King though, he was able to turn a country and lead us into getting equality for black people, despite threats on his life, assasination attempts, and eventulaly dying. Then look at Barack Obama, he has done nothing like that at all, maybe if he was able to turn large majorities of die-hard republicans to his side and lead with a huge number (like he did with Hillary) then he might be that great, but considering that it's still a close race and he hasn't faced any real pressure (real pressure here being legitimate threats, I mean even the people who said they wanted to assasinate him weren't taken seriously).

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# 13VM3 (420blazetherainbow) Sep 8 2008, 03:35 AM
OK. I like this thread. It appeals to the history buff in me.

I'll go through every name submitted and then offer a few of my own.

Techamer is correct. A great orator is one who (1)changes the conventional wisdom (2) through their oratory skills.

That is why MLK is a great orator, and Hitler is not. Hitler preyed on a significant pre-existing antisemitism fears and economic concerns and were only a small part of a broad propaganda campaign that made extensive use of film, radio, art etc. etc.

Furthermore, we cannot just judge one who changes conventional wisdom as a great orator. He has to change it through his oratory. This is why FDR is a great orator and Ronald Reagan is not.

One who submits an idea, like Ike, does not automatically qualify as a great orator.


A few great orators were:

Kennedy, MLK, Lincoln, Churchill, Cicero, Solon, Robespierre.


Washington was a great leader, not a great orator.


I do consider Obama a great orator. He has already done something great, though with other great assets, one of his most prominent was his ability to speak and motivate people. He defeated the "inevitable" Hillary Clinton.

Even the opponents of Obama almost always note his ability to speak. For the time being, he is an "exceptional" speaker. He's not one of the greatest yet. I will wait until he actually becomes president to pass judgment on whether he becomes one of the greatest. He certainly has the potential. But once he gets into office, he needs to actually change something, and change the minds of his opponents.

So is Obama one of the greatest orators? Get back to me in 8 years. (or 8 weeks if he doesn't win)

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# 14Excelsis.hT Sep 8 2008, 04:11 AM
QUOTE(Namreg @ Sep 7 2008, 17:09 PM) *

Best speaker of all time -- Patrick Henry.

wink.gif
qft

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# 15BlackTigerAce Sep 8 2008, 04:41 AM
QUOTE(Carbon @ Sep 7 2008, 16:17 PM) *

Hitler was incredibly charismatic and an extraordinary leader.

Haven't given a lot of though to who I'd consider an excellent speaker, to be honest.


I was going to say hitler as well.

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# 16Poita_ Sep 8 2008, 05:05 AM
QUOTE
Techamer is correct. A great orator is one who (1)changes the conventional wisdom (2) through their oratory skills.


[citation needed]

Why do they need to change conventional wisdom to be great orators? Sounds like an opinion to me, but you phrase it like fact.

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# 17Simba Sep 8 2008, 05:07 AM
Loads of people can give a good speech. How about the greatest speech WRITERS of all time?

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# 18VM3 (420blazetherainbow) Sep 8 2008, 05:20 AM
QUOTE(Poita_ @ Sep 8 2008, 02:35 AM) *


[citation needed]

Why do they need to change conventional wisdom to be great orators? Sounds like an opinion to me, but you phrase it like fact.


Because what is the point of oration? To convince people that your cause is the best one. To sway public opinion.

If you are simply parrot and scream the suspicions people already have - you do not have the power to change their minds - at least - not through oration.

Hitler, once he came to power, had the power to change people's minds - nobody was going to tell him he was wrong - but he did not posses this skill through his oratory skills.

This is of course, my opinion, you're free to tell me why I'm wrong.

This post has been edited by VM3: Sep 8 2008, 05:23 AM

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# 19Simba Sep 8 2008, 05:50 AM
QUOTE(VM3 @ Sep 8 2008, 00:20 AM) *


Because what is the point of oration? To convince people that your cause is the best one. To sway public opinion.

If you are simply parrot and scream the suspicions people already have - you do not have the power to change their minds - at least - not through oration.

Hitler, once he came to power, had the power to change people's minds - nobody was going to tell him he was wrong - but he did not posses this skill through his oratory skills.

This is of course, my opinion, you're free to tell me why I'm wrong.

If you're really good at parroting existing ideas and making others accept them, isn't that the same thing? You still convince people that your cause is the best one (or further engraving that it is the best one. Fanatics are always useful to have) and you are changing their minds (or altering their minds, which is a similar, but more fitting word).

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# 20Exitar Sep 8 2008, 07:15 AM
Ronald Reagan was pretty damned good. His speech on the challenger tragedy still moves me. Loved the guy, hated his politics.

George Carlin is my choice for greatest speaker of all time! I'm SORT OF joking, but I could seriously listen to the guy speak for days and never tire of it smile.gif

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