Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Live-Blogging the Debate

Obviously I am pretty happy with the way the polls and especially the electoral map seem to be pointing these days.  That said, I am excited about the debate tonight.  Obama needs to maintain his poise and presidential demeanor; he needs to stick to the issues, but not be afraid to answer back if McCain attacks.  McCain, I do not think anyone can deny, has been looking a bit desperate lately, and one of his strategists even said that the campaign needs to get people's minds off of the economy. 

When things go negative, I think Obama comes across better.  He can be negative and still seem dignified, whereas McCain comes across as petty and jealous and smarmy.

Anyway, the debate is about to begin.  I'll be back . . . 


8:02 PM. Once again, CNN goes graphic-crazy.  Such nonsense.  I suppose I could change the channel, but then I could not mock Alex Castellanos.

8:03. The first question is of course about the economy.  I will be the first to admit that I do not really have a full grasp of (Hey, is that Rod Steiger?) economic issues.  It is just something I cannot really get my brain around.  But Obama has a good handle on keeping the focus on the middle class, etc.

8:06. "It's good to be with you at a town hall meeting."  Ugh.  One thing about McCain is that he always delivers the same lines, even when they do not go over well.  His oft-repeated line about Miss Congeniality was never funny, but he says it all the time.  Hopefully not tonight.

8:09. McCain seems to be breathing heavily.  I hope he's ok.  

8:11.  I think that whenever Obama says things like "Senator McCain is right," he scores some points with undecided voters.  Maybe I'm wrong.

8:13.  If I were playing a drinking game, we would drink whenever someone says Main Street, middle class, "my friends," and earmarks.  And whenever Obama starts a sentence with "Look."

8:17.  When Obama said "We're going to need a 21st century regulation system," he should have added "that requires an understanding of computers."  But that would be wrong.

8:19.  Was Teresa (the question asker) an example of Joe Six-Pack? Good lord.  As my brother just told me, anyone who is still undecided is probably ready for 1) jury duty, 2) infomercial audience member.

8:22. McCain is coming across as very nervous.  The heavy breathing, the pacing, etc. And he's walking around like an old man.  I am not saying that to seem ageist, but he just seems unsteady, which adds to his nervousness.

8:28. On CNN, the "Uncommitted Ohio Voters" graph is interesting to watch.  Sometimes the men and women disagree, but it does not really make sense when and about what.

8:30. "We're not rifle shots here."  Now there's a bumper sticker.

8:32.  I'm thinking about remodeling my apartment with bright red carpet.

8:34. "Like nailing Jell-O to the wall."  Ho ho.  Priceless.  The fact is, McCain LIES about Obama's tax plan.  He lies.

8:39. I wish Gwen Ifill had been as strict as Tom Brokaw is being.

8:40.  A $5000 credit for health insurance will not get anyone very far.

8:42. Regarding the drinking game, all we need is the "my friends" rule.

8:44. I will say that McCain has been on the right side of climate change far longer than his Republican friends.  I will also say that I am more on the side of Republicans when it comes to nuclear power.  I have studied nuclear power in school, and i agree that it needs to be included in any discussion of alternative energy sources.

8:48. Tom's getting feisty.

8:49. When McCain gets all snarky, the graph on the bottom plummets.  Interesting.

8:55. OK, I'm just gonna say this, and I do not mean anything other than a comment about his presentation . . . There is something about McCain's delivery that reminds me a little (it might be the "whistled s") of the creepy child molester from Family Guy.

8:58. I think it is clear that these "uncommitted Ohio voters" have made up their minds.

9:01. No, Senator McCain. Obama was not wrong about Iraq.

9:05. I was hoping that Obama would make the point that stopping genocide is in our national interests, and he did.

9:06. OK, this "my friends" thing is really starting to bug me.  Come on.  Find some synonyms.  My buds. My homies. My brahs.

9:10. Under an Obama administration, people will pronounce countries' names properly.  No more of this "Eye-rack" and"Eye-ran" nonsense.

9:14. What is this "I know how to get bin Laden" nonsense? It is like when he says "I know how to win a war."  Really?  What war has McCain ever won?

9:20. The Ohio voters apparently get off on talk of Russia.  Go figure.

9:25. McCain just patted a guy.  How quaint.  I too learned everything I know from a chief petty officer.

9:27. If Iran attacks Israel, Israel will not need our help because they will wipe Iran off the map.  (Oh wait, Israel is not a nuclear country.  Ha.)

9:30. "What don't you know, and how will you learn it?"  Great question.

9:32. So Obama did not really answer that great question.  I guess it was more of an opening for a closing statement.

9:34. Not sure McCain should have ended on "We need a steady hand."  But Tom Brokaw ended the debate well by telling McCain, "Move, bitch, get out the way."

Summary: The debate lacked some excitement--none of the mud-slinging that people expected.  But  in general I would say that the net effect of this debate will be that the status quo (by which I mean that everything seems to be trending toward Obama) will be maintained.  Stark differences between these candidates exist, and these uncommitted voters must be figuring out something by now.  But McCain needed a home run tonight, and he did not get it.

Thanks for tuning in.


At 8:24 PM, Blogger Jason posited...

Man, Teresa was livid.

At 8:26 PM, Blogger CoachDub posited...

Yeah. "I understand your cynicism."

At 8:35 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

I am also wondering where Gallup dug these people out of. I am unsure.

As far as your 8:13 blurb, look, I think I'd already have to be wheeled into the ICU at this point.

And as far as the 8:19...yes. I agree with this a lot. If someone can't figure out which of these two they want to vote for, then dear lord, give up. Just give up. There is a clear choice. And to everyone who says "I don't like politics" or "I don't like either party" or "I'm sick of the election," well, deal with it. Don't vote if you don't want to, but I can hardly believe anyone could be informed on the issues and yet come down in the middle between Obama and, well, anybody besides George Soros, oops -- I mean John McCain.

At 8:36 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

And also unfortunately, I bet 75% of the country just wondered why McCain called a vacuum a President. Maybe more. Thank you Lade.

At 8:38 PM, Blogger CoachDub posited...

Well said.

At 8:38 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

And finally, Social Security.

I am very interested in this.

At 8:48 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

hahaha, Tom Brokaw is just laying the law down.

At 8:52 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

And I have to say I was very let down by the social security part. I understand neither wants to come out and say it, but the way the system is right now, I am screwed. That's 14% of my paychecks in this state that I will never, ever, ever see again even though technically it's "guarenteed." It makes me angry. No one says this though. Everyone ignores it on both sides because no one wants to scare anybody. Meanwhile I might as well just cut my grandmas a check instead. It would be more efficient and I would much rather have that option anyway.

At 8:58 PM, Blogger CoachDub posited...

Very true, Parker.

At 9:28 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

I know about leadership which clearly makes sense considering whatever CPO he learned from was almost certainly his superior in the Navy.

Let's not cut context to get off a condescending text byte.

At 9:31 PM, Blogger CoachDub posited...

My CPO comment was not meant to be snide. I was just being silly. I was being snide about the pat on the shoulder though.

At 9:32 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

Okay. Now I'm just angry. WHAT AN IDIOT. Okay, not that bad, but please. What dire consequences? What is sitting at some crappy table going to do to Iran? Talk for the sake of pretense if you must, but with Iran we've already tried every economic sanction in the book for almost two decades. I'm not saying bombing Tehran is any better, but seriously. Ahmadinejad is a maniacal idiot who hates this country, hates Israel worse, and could give a crap about any punishment that doesn't involve him losing his power.

At 9:32 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

It was an interesting debate though. Plus it was funny to hear Tom getting a little frustrated at both of them trying to leave the last impression on each question.

At 9:35 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

What it is coming down to, I think, is that based on this debate I wouldn't trust Obama in charge of our military as far as I could score points off him in a debate. That's not very far. Of course, I personally don't like his economics that much either, but McCain is no economic wizard himself, which is clear. And right now, the economy is rightfully the big issue. Let's just say any Obama leaning terrorist would be a super idiot to do something between now and November.

At 9:41 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

I'm curious...and this answer might be embarassing, but who said Israel doesn't have nukes? I've never even heard that as a joke. Is that like the "official" stance that is clearly not true circa 19_0 or am I missing something?

At 9:47 PM, Blogger CoachDub posited...

They are unofficially a nuclear country.

At 9:55 PM, Blogger Pelk posited...

"And to everyone who says "I don't like politics" or "I don't like either party" or "I'm sick of the election," well, deal with it."

Parker, I hope you're not justifying our two-party system. I understand that I'm stuck with two crappy choices for President, so in the mean time I'll just have to "deal with it." But I hope that you and I can agree that some changes to this system are needed.

At 10:00 PM, Blogger scott w posited...

In the past I know Tom B has had a personal friendship with McCain, and I thought this was evident tonight. He was on Obama's case about time more so than McCain. Now, this may be a nit-piky observation, but at one point Tom laughed with McCain about one of the responses. But I guess the candidates are even as in the last debate Gwen Ifill seemed more bias towards Biden.

At 10:01 PM, Blogger CoachDub posited...

Also, I am sorry that I missed making a comment about McCain saying "that one."
I was also IM-ing with my brother during the debate, and he and I talked about it, so I got confused and thought I'd posted it. Oh well. You'll hear a lot about those two little words...

At 10:03 PM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

Pelk, if you think that's what I'm talking about, you missed the whole point. What I don't like is people bitching because of all the election stuff. I understand it gets tiring, and repetitive, and frustrating, but that's no excuse for not paying attention, which is the route so many people take.

As far as two parties, I wasn't even thinking about the issue.

And as far as two parties, if you want more, the we abolish the presidency and go to a parliamentary/prime minister system. How else will more work? Even if Congress gets divided up based on percentage of vote, I hardly think a plurality vote of 22% or whatever is going to be allowed to win POTUS. So I'm curious as to what changes you want. If it's the financing/PAC aspect, sure, but if you seriously want more than two viable parties, it's going to take a complete revamp.

At 11:05 PM, Blogger Pelk posited...

I understand your point. In a two-party system it's to the advantage of both candidates to move toward the center. I'm sure there are many voters who are either left or right on some the issues that both candidates hold basically the same position on and moderate on the issues where the candidates differ. If those voters vote primarily on the issues, then they could be very informed but still indifferent between the two candidates.

As far as how I would change the system, that's too lengthy to discuss here.

At 11:26 PM, Blogger Tom posited...

Am I the only person in the world who still doesn't put any stock in any of this shit, still? Am I the only person who believes that 93% of EVERYTHING that goes on in a presidential campaign is a charade, including debates? Am I the only person that looks at what the candidates did BEFORE they were campaigning, and ONLY what they did before? Honestly, I wouldn't be surprised if I am, and maybe I'm wrong, but jeez, I feel like the entire country is pretty god damn gullible if they are going to put so much thought into judging these Miss POTUS pageants. The only importance I see in the debates is that, sadly, the guy who misspoke less gains some apparent advantage for the time being, which can theoretically influence the outcome of the election. Give me a fuckin break, we all knew the platforms months ago. If they change, it's because the candidate thinks it'll get him elected. period. aaaaaaand that's my rant.

At 11:40 AM, Blogger P "N" K posited...

Very solid. Clear frustation = good rant.

At 1:23 PM, Blogger Pelk posited...

Unfortunately, Tom, a lot of people live under a rock, and are just crawling out now to find out what both candidates are about.

But I completely agree, the debates are worthless.

At 7:42 PM, Blogger Jason posited...

Come on, think of where SNL's ratings would be without them.


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