Friday, February 01, 2008

The Pre-Super Tuesday Debates (Wednesday's And Thursday's Shows)

Hi everybody. This is going to be fairly short since I've decided to take a little break with regards to recapping election/debate punditry. But don't worry, if I happen to catch someone saying something particularly stupid, rest assured it will not go unmocked. But anyway, I got through half of the republican debate, which I'm going to go ahead and consider a victory. It actually wasn't completely horrible, other than the unbelievably annoying focus on Reagan. You'd think he was second coming or something. Good lord. For those who used the debate to get their drinking game on, I really hope his name was not one of your words. But if it was, and you're reading this right now, congratulations on regaining consciousness. I'll try to keep it down.

As for the moderation of the debate, I think Anderson Cooper did a better job than with the YouTube republican debate (though that was a different format), but I'm going to have to agree with the critics that the questioning was unfair. Regardless of whose poll numbers are where, there were four candidates on that stage. And even though two of them might be out ahead, Super Tuesday hasn't even happened yet, so there's the possibility for things to change. I am so tired of the media manipulating and anointing the front runners. Obviously there was a whole team behind the debate, so I don't want it to sound like I'm dumping all that on Anderson, although he did do the pretty uncool thing of promising Ron Paul he'd get to talk about his credentials and then never gave him the chance. Huckabee and Paul were definitely marginalized. I actually agree with a lot of what Paul says. Too bad half of him is crazy (and possibly racist). After the debate I hit "the google" to see if the Paul people were angry. Um, yes, they're angry. Though to be honest, that might just be their natural state. (I kid! I kid! Don't hurt me, Ron Paul people.)

With regards to the post-republican debate analysis, there was nothing all that noteworthy. Well, except for the minor stroke I had. I bet some of you longtime readers can guess why. I was quite excited to see my usually-low-profile senator, Claire McCaskill, on the show, but how did Anderson introduce her? As a senator from Missourah. ?!?!?!?!!! Yeah, that's when the stroke happened. Noooo! Not you, Anderson. One more time, it's Missouree! Every two years this happens. It's bad enough we're already deemed flyover country, please don't make it sound like we're all rural hicks. If you're not going to listen to me, listen to an NBC producer. For now, I am zen, but man, if everybody starts saying Missourah on Super Tuesday I am making an "on notice" list. Don't think I won't!

Okay, transitioning now to the democratic debate, and I have a lot less to say. Having only two people is so much better than the early debates where the candidates had so little time that they were practically irrelevant. I was very sad to see Edwards drop out, but I was also a tad relieved, because though he was my guy, it was also looking like he had no shot, and nobody wants to vote for someone you know is going to lose. To me, it looked like Clinton won the debate. Of course it still didn't help me to decide. This weekend I'm probably going to an Obama rally. I saw him speak in late 2006 and it was awesome, so it should be really exciting now. Has everyone made up their minds for Super Tuesday?

I'll try to do another post or two before Monday, so don't be a stranger.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do you think Ron Paul is crazy? Is the racist comment because of the newsletter relating to decades back?
I love his foreign policy views. Sadly he doesn't have a chance in hell. The frustrating thing about the American political process is that it is a 2 party system. It is regrettable that the war in Iraq and the trillions of dollars spent there is no longer the topic of conversation in the Democratic debates. Someone explain to me why Mccain is so popular with the independents and a pariah in his own party. Isn't he a hawk when it comes to Iraq and he is pro life right? I thought those were 2 really important requirements for the GOP?

12:44 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

@anonymous-Yes, the newsletters. With regards to the crazy, his free market ideas are extreme to say the least. Elimination of the IRS? How could that possibly not be a disaster? I like that he's antiwar, but that's it. And I agree the 2 party system is frustrating.

McCain is popular with independents because he's been known to go against his party on things like the environment. The base doesn't trust him. They fear he's a liberal in conservative clothes. I also get the feeling he's hated by some in the republican establishment, thus the harsh smear jobs that keep happening to him.

3:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doesn't Huckster also want to eliminate the IRS?
I don't know Eliza, Ron Paul comes across as an intelligent man. Perhaps he tends to think outside the box . Many countries around the world don't charge income tax and I imagine they're doing okay. I live in Canada. We're taxed to death here. Of course we get access to health care and social services that are invaluable but I would welcome a different taxation system. I'd rather have a root canal than to fill out my tax forms. I figure if I'm going to be in pain I'd rather be a passive participant. Speaking of taxes can you believe that Westley dude. I'm not sure what should shock me more, the fact that he didn't pay millions of dollars of taxes or the fact that he made 20 million dollars. I've got 10 years of university education and I'll never make a fraction of that in my lifetime.

7:53 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

@anonymous-Yes, Huck wants to eliminate the IRS, but in its place he wants a national sales tax. This is also a horrible idea because it would put more of a burden on the poor. Paul on the other hand, just wants to cut spending, and implement tariffs, excise taxes, user fees, and highway fees. This will never work because the loss of revenue is too great. But it's not just the IRS he wants to get rid of. Per Salon:

He's the only Republican candidate who wants to end U.S. involvement in Iraq and withdraw the U.S. Navy from the waters off the Iranian coast. He wants America to pull out of the United Nations, NATO, the International Criminal Court, and most international trade agreements. He wants to abolish FEMA, end the federal war on drugs, get rid of the Department of Homeland Security, send the U.S. military to guard the Mexican border, stop federal prosecutions of obscenity, eliminate the IRS, end most foreign aid, overturn the Patriot Act, phase out Social Security, revoke public services for illegal immigrants, repeal No Child Left Behind, and reestablish gold and silver as legal tender.

You're right. Your healthcare system and social services are invaluable. Many of us here would kill for a Canadian system. Yes, I can believe the Wesley dude. Some people think they can get away with that stuff. Plus he's a celebrity, so the the gall is magnified. Celebrities are paid a gazillion times more than what they should be. If the world was a fair place it would be teachers and hospital workers and police that were making that kind of cash. But alas, the world is not a fair place.

9:21 PM  

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