Friday, September 26, 2008

Debate open thread

I don’t feel up to live-blogging tonight. But I’ll be around if anyone wants to share thoughts, feelings and assessments after Obama vs. McCain... a.k.a. the “Cold Diss at Ole Miss.”

UPDATE (09/26/08): One hour in, I’m surprised to see John McCain so sharp. He is at the top of his game, and he is keeping Obama on the defensive.

It’s surprising because all the pre-game chatter was about how McCain’s campaign is in shambles. Democrats are even pushing the word “erratic” in regard to McCain personally.

It’ll be hard to sell McCain as “erratic” based on his performance so far.

Obama is holding his own. But he’s not rocking McCain’s world.


dez said...

McCain: "I"ve been around awhile."

Translation: "I'm an old, old man" :-)

bklyn6 said...

They got all kinds of love for each other on the cover of the upcoming issue of The Progressive.

I don't think it's on the newstands yet. I wonder if it will be?

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Thanks, Bklyn6!

dez said...

I think Obama is doing a good job of showing McCain is past his political expiration date.

Undercover Black Man said...

McCain won this one.

Obama's lucky there will be two more debates. And he's very lucky that Sarah Palin will step into the spotlight next week.

Kellybelle said...

Barack was on point!

dez said...

I think Obama pwned it. McCain hardly even looked at him, whereas Obama consistently addressed his points to McCain. Even McCain doesn't believe his own lies.

destruction said...

I don't think McCain won.

As u mentioned in your update comments, he didn't rock his world, but that doesn't mean he lost. The cool thing is, in NBA parlance, as long as Barack's ahead and keeps scoring, he wins.

I loved the format, Jim basically stepped back more than not and let them, even encouraged them, to handle each other.

I wish I could see this debate through the eyes of the typical American, but through no fault of my own, and in spite of my own efforts (Coppola Claret) to level the playing field, I'm still too dam intelligent to look through that lens.

phx said...

Yeah, I thought they fought to a draw. In either case, I feel really good that no matter who wins they will be far, far better than our current disgraceful administration. McCain's a Republican with a lot of the typical GOP baggage, but I think he deserves the maverick epithet. And Obama definitely showed he wasn't a spineless peacenik who would have us showin' all kinds of love to our enemies. McCain was slightly more wonkish on foreign policy, but Obama did better on the economy. I agree with UBM, McCain did better than my expectations. No temper, no senior moments, no sign of being rattled. You could SEE him thinking, and that's something we haven't actually seen since Clinton was President. Of course Clinton would follow up that thoughtful look with something substantially more brilliant than McCain can, but thank God...we'll be getting an INTELLIGENT president.
The debate had gone on for 25 minutes before I consciously remember that a Black man and a White man were debating for the presidency.

eclectique916 said...

I'm counting this as a draw. I think a lot of people came into this with low expectations of both candidates - that McCain would make one of his Sunni/Shi'ite gaffes and Obama would relive the primaries as he uh...uh..uh...his way to an answer and then responded with an essay. Both exceded the low expectations coming into this debate. But McCain's refusal to have eye contact with Obama....that was kind of funky. Either he has no respect for his opponent, hates Obama's guts, or had to avoid eye contact as some form of anger management tactic. The wrap up comments noticed this too. Jim Lehrer did a good job - best so far - as the moderator.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ It was funny how Lehrer, early on, kept trying to get them to go at each directly. "You gonna let him say that about your mama?"

that dude said...

Slight edge to Obama. He clearly lacks a knockout punch, and McCain has been on the ropes all week but bounced back strong tonight.

However, given that foriegn policy is clearly going to be McCain's strongest area and Obama's weakest, Obama came off as totally knowledgable and presidential in this area. However many times McCain said he was naive, I didn't believe it.

McCain is formidable, but he didn't convert anyone tonight. Obama came off mainstream enough to convert those wierdos who haven't decided yet.


I'd call it a draw.

Although, McCain's "Obama just doesn't understand" charges did annoy me, and I wanted Obama to respond directly to them. It was condescending, and I think we all felt it. In fact, I think McCain was quite condescending throughout much of the debate, and Obama just didn't do very much to counter him, which might be to his detriment.

I also don't think McCain looked at Obama, or even in his direction for the entire 90 minutes, while Obama addressed him directly quite often.

Lastly, I couldn't help but wonder how others across the country (especially in those proverbial swing states) were taking it all in. We saw a black man and a white man, opponents in what amounts to an intellectual competition, on screen, as opposed to a basketball court, or football field (zones where we, black people, have come to be accepted). I wondered if their words ultimately meant nothing, as viewers where quick to identify with either candidate in the most superficial of ways - skin color. As we all already know, race will indeed play a factor in this election.

All that being said, it's all entertaining theatrics and not very much more!

John B. said...

Count me among those who consider this a draw. Obama was better than he was during the primary debates, generally sharp and on his toes, a little hesitant but generally to the point.

After a slow start, McCain found his game and was able to keep Obama from landing any punches. But he didn't really land any himself.

I read that the instant polls following the debate give it to Obama, which surprises me a bit. I though both did well and didn't have any major gaffes. Perhaps it's a case of expectations.

neptune said...

WTF with that magazine cover!? Maybe the smoocher should be Bill Clinton instead of Obama. Wonder who advised McCain to not ever look at Obama. Was that supposed to be intimidating or dismissive? Fail on both.

fishesalot said...

Given these facts:

- that McCain has been around for 26 years or so and Obama is a young and green newcomer

- that McCain has far more hill and foreign policy experience than Obama

- that for weeks the entire GOP machine has been depicating Obama as an inexperienced, big government softy

- that MCCain promises that he will lower the little mans taxes and Obama will tax us all

- etc, etc.

Based on the facts, in my book McCain should have destroyed Obama but he ended up in a tie. McCain could not definitively and consistently show that Obama was inexperienced, soft, and unqualified - points lost. I thought Obama succeeded in effectively going toe-to-toe on all issues with more wins/ties than beatdowns, and he clearly showed that he has what it takes to be president.

So, I see this tie as a win for Obama. It's kinda like the Ali vs Jimmy Young fight where Ali really ended up in a tie/loss to a young unknown that, on paper, he should have knocked out in round 1.


maria said...

^McCain won this one.

how? in what way? you don't say why you think this.

i was especially struck by how often mcCain was smiling through gritted teeth. there were a couple of times when he came of as angry lecturing. you could see his temper building and understand how he has a reputation for being verbally explosive. i was getting PTSD flashbacks just watching him.

Dollar Bill said...

I thought it played well when 'Bam had his "Whatever" moments,when trying to correct inaccurate information and McCain kept talking over him.

"O.K. Jim,let's move on next question?".

Which translated to,let's talk about the issues and not waste time listening to the old,whiny,lying guy,who thinks that in order to disagree with him about anything,means you're naive.

I think I would take naive if that were really the case,rather than old,deluded and stuck in the ways and thinking of the past.

A naive person can learn quickly and surround themselves with knowledgeable people,where as the Maverick cowboy,knows it all already and doesn't even listen to his own advisors.

Did you see how McCain got all fired up about those "Commies",the KGB and the insane idea of at least trying to talk to people,even if they don't like or even hate you.
He was traveling in time there,right back to '69.
He probably calls North Korea a bunch of Gooks in private,thinks all foreign names he can't pronounce are silly and should be changed for his comfort,just a "they're all the same" vibe with him,not so much at a racial level,just a general xenophobic "them" thang.
Different is bad,same is good.

As many of us on the outside have always said,it is not America that is hated so much,it has been their foreign policies.

This is why it is so easy to whip people into a patriotic and blind frenzy,because they can't possibly understand what there is to hate about the good 'Ol U.S. of A.

I was hoping Obama would raise this point,but I guess that wouldn't be good strategy pre-election.

Hopefully,post election,President Barack will make some major changes,so that not only America can see the change,but the world as well.

Talking to people/governments is never a bad thing,then true understanding can begin,instead of buying into the spin and propaganda.

Standing on the outside,I would say this is a even bigger issue than the economy and is crucial to address in order to prevent further attacks and and possible collateral damage in neighboring countries. ;)

Football politics in the world arena needs to end and we need to allow other countries to play whatever game they want as long as they do it on their own field.

McCain kept going on about never allowing another Holocaust in the future and mentioned some examples of "preventing" them,but left quite a few of the list that had no political of financial advantage for the U.S. to get involved with and in fact were politically of financially advantageous to do nothing about until after the dead were buried in mass graves.

I'm guessing starvation and AIDS kills more people in the world than wars,so if you want to still "help" the world concentrate on dropping food and medicine,instead of bombs.

But if it is a true act of charity,don't put strings on it, just cross your fingers that the true goodwill is recognized and appreciated,don't demand it.

The U.S. has always been proud(bragged) about their aid throughout the world,but fail to disclose how much of it is done for political leverage.

Perhaps this economy "crater" is just another good reminder to take care of your own backyard for a while.

Take care of your own issues first,if you don't have it to give to your own,then you don't have it to give to anyone else either.

Besides I don't think y'all will be able to go out to the movies for a while as you're about to spend 700 billion on a home theatre system.

I don't have a vote in how this turns out,but I'll be voting here for someone that will be a better match for Obama than our current PM.

If McCain wins,that means you are all owned,all those fancy bits of paper with the nice words are a sham,a promotional item to attract new victims and your Country is being run by stockholders,who continue to profit,BY ALL MEAN NECESSARY.

Rant mode off.

maria said...

some folks need their own blog!

DM--love the new graphic!

Dollar Bill said...

The rants don't come on often enough for me to blog,but my apologies for sucking up so much space here.

Undercover Black Man said...

DM--love the new graphic!

Thanks, maria.

Dollar Bill said...

jjbrock said...

UBM, new look, I like. I think Obama was dropping foreign names like I don't no what. By doing so, he was letting America no that he's well aware of other foreign powers. Too me Obama was the clear winner. He didn't lose any ground but he most likely gain plenty.

MIB said...

If last night's debate were a boxing match, I'd give Obama the decision and set up the rematch.

Academically, Obama 'won' in terms of substance, poise, and strategy. However, he allowed McCain to move the goalposts on the subjects of the bailout and banking crisis. He also did not deliver a knockout quip. The two items in combination may be interpreted by McCain partisans as a win for their candidate.

Either way, last night was no game changer. McCain's campaign remains in deep kimchi.

maria said...

i'm still waiting for david to say why he thinks mccain won. i'm eager to hear your thoughts.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ He was on offense, he kept Obama reactive. McCain displayed a sense of command, focus and world knowledge that will comfort those undecideds who are ill-at-ease with Obama's youth and inexperience.

Obama seems to think this is just a "change" election. If it were only a change election, he wouldn't be near deadlocked in the polls.

It's a "Can-they-accept-Obama?" election.

And if Obama's gonna win that election, he's gonna have to score some knockdowns against the other guy.

bklyn6 said...

I though both did well and didn't have any major gaffes.

I saw this video this morning. I was surprised at how fast team McCain put it together. They were quick to observe how Obama readily agreed with McCain on some of the issues. The ad implies that Obama thinks McCain would make a better leader.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Didn't that motherfucker McCain "suspend his campaign" just a few days ago? Because of, you know, the big financial crisis that he must devote himself to rectifying?

Didn't he say he was gonna put the ads on pause?

What's different now than Wednesday? Or was McCain just pulling a bullshit stunt in the first place?

dez said...

What's different now than Wednesday? Or was McCain just pulling a bullshit stunt in the first place?