Friday, October 01, 2004


No, I Didn't Watch The Debate

...although I listened to part of it on the radio; I was too busy outside, re-building the succah. (Yes, I know that the visual aspect of Presidential debates is vital -- it's what lost Nixon the presidency in 1960, and so forth. Sometimes you have to take what you can get.)

It's all anyone can talk about here at work today, though. I'm taken by how *many* of my co-workers are convinced that John Kerry won the debate easily. It's interesting; the reports I've been reading online are mixed.

The comment that made the most sense to me, however, was Dean Esmay's -- if you want to know who won the debate, wait a few days. Or perhaps a few weeks. Sometimes the "killer quote" isn't apparent until long after; the immediate reaction has little to no bearing on the long-term effect.

So let's wait and see.

(The other comment that made sense to me -- read on VodkaPundit, among other places -- was that Bush is ahead in the polls right now. He merely needed to hold his own in the debate, which I believe he did. Kerry, on the other hand, needed to knock it out of the park, which he didn't do. We'll see what the polls say next week.)

Oh, and Stephen Green got off my favorite zinger so far: '7:45pm. Here's what we have so far. Kerry is an impressive attack machine. Bush impressively refuses to budge. If I had to guess, the question most viewers will ask is, "In time of war, do I want the debate team captain, or the guy he can't move?"'

My personal take, based on what I heard and what I've read? Kerry befuddles me. I find myself asking, again and again, how someone of his background and experience can believe some of the things he claims to believe. We're not multilateral enough for him in Iraq, yet we're too multilateral for him in North Korea? We spent $200 billion on an "unnecessary" war, that could have been spent instead on health care? (To my way of thinking, health-care is not the top priority for a nation under attack.)

The alternative, of course, is that perhaps Kerry doesn't believe any of it; maybe he's just saying what he thinks will get him elected. Many people are arguing just that, of course. (Hell, many people are saying that about Bush too.)

Personally, I prefer to give them both the benefit of the doubt. But I find it a lot easier to do with Bush than with Kerry.



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