Monday, November 16, 2009

The next Obama town hall meeting

"Politely but firmly pressing for greater freedoms on China's own turf, President Obama spoke against censorship Monday, saying tough criticisms of political leaders should be allowed and the free flow of information on the Internet "should be encouraged." The president's message during a town hall-style meeting with university students in Shanghai, China's commercial hub, focused on one of the trickiest issues separating China's communist government and the United States — human rights."

For most people, town hall meetings are about American leaders listening to average American citizens tell them what is wrong and what they want.

For Obama, town hall meetings are forums for the American leader to lecture the pre-screened ticket holding audience in response to pre-selected questions reviewed in advance by staff.

The next Obama town hall meeting ought to be in America, with randomly selected American university students, featuring unscreened and unfiltered questions and comments from the audience, with Obama listening instead of speaking, regarding young graduates' employment prospects.

Of course, that won't happen.

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