A good politician in the US knows how to gear his pitch to his audience. If you're speaking to a college group, you had better be good dealing with narcissism and psychological neoteny.
from a town-hall meeting John and Elizabeth Edwards held at the University of New Hampshire Monday. They were questioned by an undergraduate named Jenny Ballantine, who had this to say:Source
I need to be able to look to my leader and see words of encouragement, words of hope. I need to be able to trust that person. I need to be able to know that I'm going to be grow [sic in transcript] in a world that's not going to be full of hate and prejudice and racism and to know that I matter, that I wasn't just dumped in this world for no particular reason whatsoever.
I'm busting my ass in school, I work 25 to 30 hours a week, and it's just me and my dog. So what can you do for the people that are in my situation, that are trying their damnedest in school, wanting to go to grad school, is going to be hit with the loans--and, uh, I have no idea what I want to do when I grow up. I don't know what I want to be when I'm an adult. But I'm 22 right now, so people are like, "Honey, you are an adult." You know what? It's about me. It's about me voting for you or supporting somebody who's going to be the next president. So it's all about me right now. Just give me something.
Here is how the Edwardses responded:
Mr. Edwards: God bless you. If I were choosing a president, uh, that's what I'd be doing. I'd be looking for the specifics of what they want to do, because that matters, but I would also be judging them personally, because we need to trust our president.
Mrs. Edwards: I want to say something, too. I was really impressed with you, Jenny Ballantine, and I think probably everybody in this room was, and I want everybody in this room who believes that Jenny Ballantine is going to be able to do it to give her a round of applause.
According to Foster's Daily Democrat of Dover, N.H., the audience gave Miss Ballantine not only a round of applause but a standing ovation.