Friday, October 5, 2012

Presidential Debates- From Big Bird to Buffoonery

Well did you all see the first Presidential Debates the other night? There were some highlights, to be sure.  There was an attack on Big Bird, there was a overpowered and irritatingly ineffective Moderator (Jim Lehrer), there were awkward silences and a stone cold audiance [as directed], and there was lots of spotty make-up jobs.

Mostly, it was a snoozer, unless you were the Republicans, whom  seem invigorated by their candidate's apparent "victoire triomphale". It just goes to show you, in my humble opinion, in our American society, it is often the ends that justify the means. Apparently such minor quibbles as 'accurate statements', half-truths and outright lies are just the tools of the trade for Mr. Businessman. Now that we've all had a chance to sit and analyze every statement, every fact of the parties statements...a cooling off of heads is sure to be the result.

The first thing that sticks out to me, was how 'slick' Romney was. The Blue guys rallied, quick to point out this as a mark of a strong showing...a demonstration of a man in charge, a real leader! I could see him giving speeches exactly like this in a boardroom, as he sets the gameplan for the fate of their recently acquired failing business. During some moments, when he glared at Obama, It almost looked to me as if he were explaining to his teenage daughter why she couldn't go to the prom with that 'colored' fella she likes so much. (sic)

 I saw a comment that basically iterated well my thoughts, so i'll spare you more of my limited intellect and show you what he observed, more eloquently than I could:


A center-left democrat's opinion:

Romney: He held it together, spoke like a leader, stayed more on the offense, provided a little more clarity into his plans, and showed a faith in what he believes in. He did show some testiness, appeared to have pity in his face when looking at Obama, and I'd swear sometimes he looked like he was about to cry (kinda like Boehner looks).

Obama seemed confident, stayed more on the defense but defended his record well and showed a true concern for the unfortunate. He had a number of struggling pauses in his speech, trying too hard to say the right thing, showed some arrogance, and he sometimes appeared frustrated.

Romney's tone and rhythm outshined Obama's. Obama had a number of chances to channel his debating mentors and step it up a couple of notches, but he didn't. He almost seemed a little nervous and was definitely on the defense.

Both candidates were courteous, with the exception of time-grabbing, which Obama did more of.

Both candidates had missed opportunities, but I understand the pressure they're in when on stage and under the lights and microscope.

Romney's best moment to me, explaining how he can support Romneycare, but not Obamacare - because he believes healthcare should be left up to the states.

Obama's best moment to me, owning Obamacare, providing clarity and anecdotes in support of it, and owning his belief in the federal government handling and nationalizing social programs.

Although the debate as a whole was fairly dry, I do think Romney came out on top in this one.

FYI this doesn't change my vote. Overall, and I mean overall, accounting for all important issues, I still trust that by the end of a second Obama term, we'd be better off than having a fiscal and social conservative run our country. I believe Romney would do wonders for the private business sector, but I do not trust that the private business sector will in turn trickle those wonders down to us. Using a metaphor, I believe Romney is the type to cut off the arms and legs in order to save a terminal Cancer patient, while Obama is the type to take the chance and hit the spreading Cancer with a clinical trial chemotherapy in order to try to save the whole patient. If the recession is the Cancer, then I support Obama's methods.

And on social issues, which are certainly important to many people, no matter how some try to chant "economy, jobs, economy, jobs", I fully support Obama's policies. I do not feel comfortable with a Romney presidency, where the big social issues are left to the states. We are the United States, and I believe there are some social issues that belong to our identity as a country as a whole, and not as a collection of states with varying and opposing social issue laws. Only the federal government can bring all states together.

"One nation" why can we not behave like one?


I'm anxiously awaiting the next debates. Especially October 16th, in NewYork, where undecided voters will fire off questions to the candidates in a Town Hall style format. The following will be October 22nd, in Florida. 

Like most of us, my vote is still safely locked in my head, but I still like to see what we're gonna get, and whom I'm glad we won't!  Until then, Policionado’s!