Shallow debate comment #2: I'm watching on ABC and 40 minutes into this thing, Bush has spent 20 minutes of it making weird faces on the split screen.
Before I could finish this, Bush started riffing into Missy Johnson and some pre-rehearsed tear jerking mush story. What the hell is he talking about?
Seriously. Ugh. Of course, Mr Bush agreed to those rules saying shots of the candidates not talking weren't allowed. Too bad the news organizations didn't sign them. :-)
Need to absorb this more, but I thought Kerry did a pretty fine job.
I'm looking forward to reading the morning news spin. I don't understand how anyone could watch that debate and not think that Kerry completely smoked Bush.
Pretend you knew nothing about these two men and someone sat you in front of that debate for 90 minutes. Then they pose the question: Which of these two men would you guess is the leader of the richest, most powerful country in the world? Answer is pretty clear to me.
Of course, the spin started the minute the debate ended. And lets face it, chances are those people who haven't made up their mind probably either didn't watch it at all or didn't sit through the whole thing so all they will be getting is the spin.
The tepid response so far from the doctors? Kerry did a slightly better job than the president but didn't change anybodys minds.
Obvious debate comment from me, now: How can you reiterate the same exact point about your debate opponent in response to very single question? How many times did Bush say that Kerry said that this was the "Wrong war blah blah blah?" It was the political equivalent of a seventh grader's stammering, "Oh yeah?! Well YOUR momma ..."
What continues to frustrate and confound me is how a man with next to no cranial capacity can maintain the faith of half our population?
I read that Atlantic article about Bush beating Ann Richards (http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200407/fallows) in TX and was actually afraid that Kerry would come across as an aristocratic, condescending, brainy boob.
I don't think people necessarily underestimate Bush, but rather they 'overestimate' the American public by thinking they're wiser to rhetoric and spun facts than they really are. People respond to image and rhetoric. They responded to Reagan's "there you go again" and they've responded to Bush's image as a rancher with dirt under his nails and a tanned hide from long days clearing brush and driving cattle in the West Texas sun ("hyaa! yaaa!").
I was very very pleasantly surprised by Kerry's performance last night. One of his advisers finally looked out the window of the airplane and noticed that the majority of America is rural, not big cities. Rolling your eyes, sighing and being condescending to Bush was going to earn him no points with many Americans.
He was clear, concise, respectful, affable and strong. He looked very happy to be there and appeared to take no pleasure whatsoever in admonishing Bush for his failures. But he was very serious about them nonetheless. Kerry showed up for last night's job interview well-prepared. Bush stayed up too late the night before doing keg stands.
That being said, I am not sure if Kerry really swayed many people. I'd like to think so, but I'm one of those people who is amazed that America ever elected Bush (thumb's up to Lebanon, Social Security is not a Federal program) in the first place.
I leave that speculation up to the chatterboxes that I quickly muted once the debate ended. Joey from 'Friends' is more enlightening than David Brooks lying to himself and his audience that Bush was anything other than godawful.