Oct 15 2008

Digesting the debate

Category: election 2008harmonicminer @ 10:19 pm

I think McCain “won”, but on points, not by knockout.  Every time he had his opponent on the ropes or reeling, he seemed to back off just short of the final blow to end the bout.  There is some wierd way in which McCain is just too nice, too much of a gentleman, too sportsmanlike, almost, to simply do the deed.  It’s almost as if he is content to demonstrate his mastery of his opponent without ending the match.

Senator McCain, almost no one watching this debate, who hasn’t already made up their mind, knows ANYTHING about President Hoover.  You have to explain the reference, in some detail, to make the parallel clear.

Knockout blows were available on taxes and their effect on a struggling economy, on late-term abortion and Obama’s extremism, on his alliances with Ayers, ACORN and Wright, people’s fears of government run health-care, etc.  But after setting up the blow, and showing he could do it, he retreats to a neutral corner.

I understand his concern for not appearing harsh or overly combative, given the mushy middle, emotionally driven people to whom he must appeal to win the election.   So perhaps he was following the advice of political “experts”.  I can’t judge it.  But it is clear to me that it’s possible to make points with humor and edge, as Reagan showed, and as Palin sometimes does.

“So, Senator, do you really think the American people believe that you didn’t know William Ayers was an unrepentant radical leftist and terrorist who wished he’d bombed MORE, when you worked closely with him in a job he gave you to distribute other people’s money to indoctrinate children in his radical ways?  Don’t you think your opinion of the electorate is just a BIT low?”

“So, Senator, do you really think that by taking money away from the employers of our society you can create more jobs?  How will that work, exactly?  Will lowering their profit margin inspire them to go out and hire people?  I’m just curious, I’m sure your advisers have explained it to you, and maybe you would explain it to the rest of us, right now?”

“So, Senator, will you explain exactly what kind of health problems a woman might have that your advisers have told you are adequate reason to kill an 8 month fetus in the womb, that would be viable if it was simply born?”

“So, Senator, can you explain why you are second in all-time donations from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, who gave you more money in three years than they gave John Kerry in his entire Senate career, and almost as much a Christopher Dodd in HIS entire career?  What do they see in you that would inspire them to do this, just before their spectacular recent meltdown?”

“So, Senator, can you explain why government run health care in the USA will work any better than it has in Canada, Great Britain, and most of Europe?  What deep insight do you have that is superior to all those other wise socialists?”

I can dream, I guess.  Of course, I’d have a hard time getting elected to dog catcher…  too combative, I suppose.  But there was a time for this in the campaign, and it should have happened way sooner than now.

McCain should have made a LOT more of the fact that Obama would not hold the ten townhalls with him, and asked him point blank what he was afraid of the American people finding out.



One Response to “Digesting the debate”

  1. JC says:

    Phil: I wish you were on the other end of an ear-piece planted in McCain so you could have given him these very good follow-up questions. I watched the entire thing and thought McCain did better, but still didn’t expose Obama for what he is…a very junior politician with no real-life experience that qualifies him to be President of the USA. Personally, I would have hammered away (all along) at his lack of experience vs. McCain’s abundant experience. It is the same angle as your follow-up questions. “What deep insight do you have…”, and where did you get it? From your years running a business? From your deep involvement in the health care industry? From your intimate experience on Wall Street? McCain and his advisors should have thought through questions McCain asked and they would have seen how easy it was for Obama to dodge them in a TV-debate format. He could not dodge the lack-of-experience attack because his only answers would sound silly….to anyone listening. Maybe it’s just me, but I think McCain really let Obama off the hook on the experience issue and therefore gave him more credibility each time he gave his usual eloquent but empty-promise anwers.

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