On my studio wall is a framed card that reads, "The pen is mightier than the sword, but nothing compares with the vocal chords." Four days of gavel-to-gavel convention watching have reminded me, a professional speaker, of the difference between bad, mediocre, good, and great speechifying. There was a lot of "not nearly ready for prime time" dross ... and some truly magical moments. I'm also reminded that although I am an avowed "action fanatic," ideas do matter. Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton both said the 2004 election is a "battle for the soul of the nation." Obviously, they'd both like you to vote for John Kerry, but the point is that this vote is, whatever your political persuasion, about a turning point concerning nothing less than the idea of what America is all about.