Three days after the bombing that killed three people and wounded more than 170 at the Boston Marathon, President Barack Obama flew to Boston to deliver a speech at an interfaith service for the victims and survivors.
This marks the fifth time that Obama has delivered such an address following mass killings, beginning with Fort Hood, Texas in November of 2009 and including Tucson, Arizona in January 2011, Aurora, Colorado in July 2012 and Newtown, Connecticut last December.
The corporate media, which has cynically dubbed Obama the "consoler-in-chief," hailed his latest speech as "inspiring," "powerful" and "moving." It was all they wanted to hear and in no way conflicted with their efforts to frame the events in Boston within the reactionary narrative of the "war on terrorism," turning them into another justification for war abroad and attacks on democratic rights at home.
In reality, it was painfully evident that Obama was working off of a template, engaged in a national ritual that is utterly routine, banal and insincere.
Almost invariably, he begins these speeches by invoking "scripture."
"Scripture tells us," were the first words out of Obama's mouth after he rose to address the crowd from the pulpit of Boston's Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
"Scripture tells us, "Do not lose heart,'" he began his remarks to a prayer vigil for the 26 victims of the Newtown school massacre.