Friday, September 26, 2008

Presidential Debate #1, September 26, 2008

regular people

I am 100% all about being politically involved, but in the current epoch, when candidates do so little in public that isn't scripted, the extemporaneous speaking skills in a Presidential debate are a painful display. A Congressional debate on CSPAN is an opera compared to a Presidential debate. And I mean in no way to diminish the importance of a Presidential debate, or the chance for everyone with a television set or a computer screen to see and hear the candidates. But politicians these days, with very few exceptions, are really sorely tested to sound like they are in control of their ideas, even if their ideas are good ones and even if their ideas are indeed of their own making.

The debate ends up being a bit like NASCAR where everyone is sitting around waiting for someone to hit the wall and burst into flames. Like as not, if you are a Jeff Gordon fan at the beginning of the race, you are a Jeff Gordon fan at the end of it.

But civic duty is not easy, I suppose, nor perhaps should it be. So we watch, listen, scratch our heads, and add up the pluses & the minuses along the way. And the politicians, good soldiers that they are, go unsteadily forward while trying to avoid the walls and the flames.

Mets lose 6-1 to the Florida Marlins. You could hear Jerry Manuel's teeth grinding on the radio.

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