Saturday, September 27, 2008

Debate 1 Reax

That was exactly the kind of debate I want to see, where they can talk to each other, ask each other questions, press for answers -- and even declare, "Horsesh*t!" if they're not satisfied.

That was a *real* debate. More, please.

We don't need any of this artificial "your time is up" bullshit we saw so much of during the primary debates. (Remember the one where Hillary and Obama were in the middle of a really interesting exchange on universal healthcare and the narrator kept trying to cut them off? One or both had to basically say, "do you mind, this is important, we're gonna talk about it for a bit.")

Overall, it was basically a draw. They both did what they had to, nobody farted over their dialogue, and I don't see too many minds changing as a result.

Obama was cool and professorial, maybe too cool and professorial, but that's who he is. (Loved his "inside baseball" line--That kind of thing really works for him, IMO. He's not as good as Bill Clinton in that regard, but he would definitely be another "explainer in chief.") For the purposes of appealing to people who aren't already supporting him, maybe he could've been a little more... vigorous.

McCain was contemptuous and dismissive, maybe too contemptuous and dismissive, but that's who he is. (And it does accurately reflect what his base thinks of Democrats in general and Obama, specifically.) For the purposes of appealing to people who aren't McCain supporters, he should probably be a little more "the happy warrior" -- a little more gregarious, a little less hot under the collar.

I wonder if there might now be some backlash over that a la Nixon/Kennedy. Clearly, Tweety and other Obama-supporting pundits were preoccupied with McCain's "body language" in the post-game... perhaps overly, though I guess time will tell.

To me, McCain came off as a superior, entitled sonofab*tch, someone you worry will lose his temper and repeat some of the same reactionary mistakes of the Bush administration rather than, y'know, think things through. I expect someone with McCain's experience to understand that foreign policy is a chess game, but he seems to think it's Texas Hold 'Em. And certainly, that's how he's run his campaign, too. Not sure we need any more of that on the world stage.

Everything about McCain's demeanor said, "how dare this young upstart, this empty suit, this *kid*, pit himself against me, when I'm so obviously his superior!" He couldn't possibly admit what Obama, IMO, demonstrated so amply -- that he's smart enough, and knowledgheable enough to be commander-in-chief. (And gosh darnit, people like him!)

If he does admit that his opponent has what it takes to be president, as Al Gore did so disastrously with George Bush in 2000, that's the ballgame, because all things being equal, this is a change election -- and McCain is not "change." He's "experience."

So I dunno. The debates are three rounds, though, so I guess we don't have to decide who won just now.


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