Can you imagine a speech of this power delivered with such sincerity by a British politician? They are a seedy, cynical bunch, but Ms Rice (though a practical and effective politician) speaks from the heart. I know no other argument for the Romney candidacy than that she endorses it, but she herself would be the best President America could currently have. By a happy coincidence that very rarely occurs, she would also be the most electable Republican.
I saw her pass by with the Russian foreign minister at my favourite restaurant in Moscow when I lived there. My late wife and I were sitting among her Secret Service guards because the restaurant's staff kindly decided to let us have our usual table even though the place was closed for that meeting. I heard Russian friends speak of her with respect (she speaks their language well and, though she never wavers in advancing America's position, they know she understands Russia's importance in the world). It's in the nature of Russians that they respected her as much for the former as the latter. They despise their weaselly critics, not the sincere ones. This, by the way, is rather a problem for British diplomacy, with its reputation for combining sucking up with backstabbing.
I urge you to watch the whole video. She demolishes President Obama without mentioning him once or directly attacking anything he has said or done. This woman is highly intelligent, streetwise and a fine, impassioned speaker but the reason I love America is that someone of that calibre can be applauded for speaking from the heart in terms like this;
Ours has never been a narrative of grievance and entitlement. We have not believed that I am doing poorly because you are doing well. We have not been envious of one another and jealous of each other’s success. Ours has been a belief in opportunity and a constant battle — long and hard — to extend the benefits of the American dream to all — without regard to circumstances of birth
and this (speaking passionately about education);
Self esteem comes from achievement, not from lax standards and false praise.
I long for the day when I can hear such sentiments expressed sincerely by British politicians. I know of no greater criticism of my own nation that I can only think of two who might ever do it; both of them on the margins of the Conservative Party and with little hope of advancement under its current, deplorable, leadership.
Or perhaps, sadly, there is one greater criticism; that the morals of the British electorate have degenerated so far, that such words would be received badly.
h/t Sean Linnane