I was actually pretty impressed by the first night speeches. Maybe it's not very sophisticated to admit being impressed by a political speech, but too bad. Gore was pretty good, and Clinton excellent (in spite of David Brooks pronouncement on PBS that it was merely a pedestrian "fine but without poetry"). In all cases I felt that the speakers articulated a vision of the country that is uniquely Democratic.
Carter's speech was also quite substantive, but I was really looking forward to post-speech analysis to fill in meaning. Imagine my surprise when Jim Leher (PBS), on scoring an interview with Carter, chose this as his first question:
(paraphrased) "You haven't been invited to speak at a Democratic convention since 1992. Did you have hard feelings about that?"
And when Carter said, in effect, "No", Leher rephrased the same question, causing Carter to state that no, he'd been suffering no "burning ambition to give a short speech at a Democratic convention". Whereupon he took the reins and started answering questions Leher should have asked.