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Final Debate Thoughts

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 10:42 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: 2008 Presidential Politics

Fresh in from Dan (GayPatriotWest):

I think McCain won the middle third (but just barely), the last third by a larger margin.

He did a very good job distinguishing himself from W. He looked more at the camera than did Obama and seemed more confident in the last third or so. Used a lot more specifics. But, let me repeat the big takeaway (and you were the first to point this out . . . to me at least), McCain was plaing offense, Obama defense.

Finally, Obama tried to be Reagan-esque at the end, but talked our country down more than appealing to the best in us.

Finally, wish there were an um-o-meter to measure the number of “ums” each candidate utters. At least Obama won one.

My final thoughts: Can Congress pass a law to keep T. Boone Pickens off of my television?

And, if Senator Obama was TRULY “post-partisan”, wouldn’t he NOT have had a “spin room”?

And, can someone call Roger Ailes and let him know there is a new way of delivering news on cable?  It is called high-definition TV.  I hate having to watch CNN for these kinds of events.

Shadow’s final thought:

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

UPDATE (from Dan): Please note I tweaked my remarks a bit. I wasn’t able to watch the first third as I was stuck in LA traffic, so can’t comment on that. I thought McCain had a slight edge in the second third, seeming nervous at times.

“John Is Right” — Post-Debate Ad

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 10:38 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: 2008 Presidential Politics

That was quick!

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

LIVE & Drug-Induced Blogging of Presidential Debate

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 8:54 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: Post 9-11 America

From GayPatriot Back Injury Central, the Presidential Debate is about to begin and I’m liveblogging under the influence of some strong stuff.

Here’s my view.  I am watching CNN, to my dismay.  Hey, FOX News Channel REALLY needs to discover high-definition TV broadcasting.

The debate is 10 minutes away…..

9:00 PM – Wolf Blitzer says we are a minute away.  Hey, if he took my drugs — he’d be Wolf Blitzed!   LOL.

9:02 PM – Jim Lehrer is now giving the intro and the rules.  Is it just me, or do his wide, glassy-eyed gaze make him look as stoned as I feel?

I almost forgot!  My Pajamas Media colleague, Steven Green from VodkaPundit, is drunkblogging at Pajamas Media.

9:06 PM – First question about the Economic Meltdown of 2008.  Barack spews out the same talking points he’s been regurgitating all week.  Took a shot at blaming the whole mess on McCain and the GOP.  Bill Clinton would disagree.

9:08 PM – Good deal with McCain explaining the Bailout and also for bringing up the need for energy independence.

9:10 PM – McCain is going heavy on the need for accountability in Washington & Wall Street.  Those of us watching on CNN are being shown a real-time graph of a focus group in Ohio.  I am noticing something interesting so far — when McCain answers, the Independents are frequently scoring above Republicans and Democrats.


Preview of First Presidential Debate — UPDATE

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 8:00 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: 2008 Presidential Politics


Yes, the rumors you have heard all week are true:  GayPatriot will be Vicodin-Live-Blogging the Presidential Debate tonight!

Okay, it isn’t actually vicodin — but I am on some seriously strong pain medication to help with the arthritis-related pain in my lower spine.  More on that topic another time….

So tune in here at beginning shortly before 9PM Eastern for my at-the-moment, unique, and pain-medicated-induced view of the debate.

Who knows what I might think I hear coming from the TV tonight!

UPDATE: Hmmmm, Vicodin-Podcasting would be even more of a challenge!

UP-UPDATE: Wow, this medicine I’m on is quite strong.  I just had a nausea spell and broke out into a serious sweat.  Sheesh.

Here is my outpost for the night:

And here is my blogging partner tonight enjoying a pre-debate snack.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

On McCain’s Decision to Debate

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 6:30 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: 2008 Presidential Politics,Media Bias

Despite my initial ambivalence about John McCain’s decision to suspend his campaign and come to Washington to help hammer out a bailout deal, I later concluded his “gambit had paid off” when his rival “capitulated and agreed to come to Washington for a summit organized by President Bush.”

Yet, the one thing which troubled me about McCain’s bold move was that he didn’t leave himself any wiggle room to participate in tonight’s debate.  I wish he had said something like this: “Should we make headway toward reaching a bipartisan compromise on a bailout bill, I’ll fly down to Oxford to debate Senator Obama.”

As a result, the MSM has portrayed his move as an “about face” (or so CNN was spinning it when I was doing my cardio about an hour ago.)  The normally even-handed (but left-leaning) Chris Cilliza concluded that McCain blinked.  Even a smart young conservative blogger has questioned McCain’s consistency.  Yet, if he does well tonight, it won’t matter much to those who watch the debate (while it will to the chattering classes).

Had McCain made the caveat I wish he had made, the media would not have been able to level the charge, particularly given the progress he has made in helping air House Republican views.


Media Expectations Won’t Matter Much to Most Voters Watching Debates

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 3:48 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: 2008 Presidential Politics,Random Thoughts

Oftentimes when we who write about politics talk about the debates, we evaluate how well a candidate has done based upon our expectations of his performance.

To that end, campaigns tend to talk down their candidates debating skills while praising their opponent as well-versed in this arena.  This way, after the encounter, they can note how their guy exceeded expectations.

Well, pundits and bloggers may be judging the candidates by how well they meet such “expectations,” but most voters, particularly those still undecided, will evaluate them with their own eyes, what they see tonight.  And not what the pundits or campaigns expect of the candidates.

(I expect to have more to say about the debate, particularly addressing the question of McCain’s “blinking,” later in the day.)

UPDATE:  The Jewish Athena offers an assessment similar to my own:  “Why is this all silly? No real voters care about this. They watch the debate and decide who did better.”  Read the whole thing.

New York Times Notices Obama’s Lies?!?!?

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 2:34 pm - September 26, 2008.
Filed under: 2008 Presidential Politics,Media Bias

Well, it seems at least one MSM organ is beginning to tell at least one of the stories other have been ignoring.  Yesterday, I wondered why they weren’t “[p]ointing out that Obama has run more negative ads than has John McCain and has misrepresented (i.e., lied about) John McCain’s record in many of them (as well as in his stump speeches).”

Well, today, the New York Times is running an article (on its front page of all places!), “Dubious Claims in Obama’s Ads Against McCain, Despite Vow of Truth.”  You see, the Democratic nominee promised he would respond to McCain’s allegedly deceptive ads, “with the truth. . . .  I’m not going to start making up lies about John McCain.”

I guess that claim was just another Obama fabrication.  Or maybe he switched positions as he has on so many other issues.

While conservative bloggers, pundits and radio talk show hosts have been taking note of Obama’s deceptions for weeks, today the Times finally reports the story.  Reporters Jim Rutenberg and Julie Bosmand find that, in radio and television ads, the Illinois Democrat has lied about McCain’s position on stem cell research, alternative energy, Social Security reform and immigration:

In all, Mr. Obama has released at least five commercials that have been criticized as misleading or untruthful against Mr. McCain’s positions in the past two weeks. Mr. Obama drew complaints from many of the independent fact-checking groups and editorial writers who just two weeks ago were criticizing Mr. McCain for producing a large share of this year’s untruthful spots (“Pants on Fire,” the fact-checking Web site wrote of Mr. Obama’s advertisement invoking Mr. Limbaugh; “False!” said of his commercial on Social Security.)

Even Democrats are beginning to take notice and think this may hurt his campaign.

Chalk one up for the Old Gray Lady.

Gas Shortage, Panic Hits Charlotte, NC

Yes folks, it is true what you’ve been hearing the past couple of days.  We here in the Queen City are without gasoline.  Of course it is affecting the normal folks like me who just want to fill up the tank.  But it is also impacting schools (they are closed — buses can’t fill up), and law enforcement (imagine calling 911 and being told “we can’t come — no fuel).

Drivers across the Charlotte region are waiting patiently — and, in some cases, impatiently — for a promised large shipment of gasoline expected to reach the Queen City by afternoon.

But the lines and traffic disruptions that dominated on Thursday continue this morning, with people in some cases having parked at gas stations overnight, waiting near the pumps with their tanks on empty. As was the case yesterday, arguments and scuffles are breaking out as frustrations boil over.

At about 8:30 this morning, a woman in line at a Citgo station in Charlotte’s Plaza Midwood neighborhood told others in line she was saving a place for her father, who was on his way with gas cans. The station, at Parkwood Avenue and The Plaza, was selling only premium gas. The wait was about 45 minutes.

When I flew back into Charlotte-Douglas Airport last night, I went quickly to hunt out three gas stations I know about near the airport.  All pumps were closed and police were guarding the businesses.

PatriotMom reported witnessing yesterday a foreign invader (Florida tags) butt in front of the whole gas line at a station in South Carolina and people getting quite angry.

I had planned to get some photos of gas lines (they are miles long) today.  People are lining up at a station at there mere rumor that a tanker truck is on its way with petrol.

This photo is courtesy of the Charlotte Observer — but I don’t live very far from this gas station in South Charlotte.

However, my own gas tank is so low that I don’t have the luxury yet of going out until I know for sure there is a guarantee I’ll get gas.   I will take my camera with me though in case I have to sit in a long line later this weekend.

Why is all this happening in Charlotte this week, you may ask?

The shortage is caused by the hurricanes that hit the Gulf Coast this month, disrupting refinery production. Refineries had enough fuel in reserve to stock southeastern pumps for a week or so, but it ran out before the refineries could get back to full production.

The Charlotte area is served by the Colonial pipeline, which told Carolinas officials yesterday that they were delivering a large shipment of fuel to Spartanburg, S.C., and that an even larger shipment would arrive in Charlotte this afternoon. N.C. Gov. Mike Easley asked several oil companies to release additional supplies from Tennessee and Wilmington.

Remind me again why Democrats are opposed to drilling US oil reserves?

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

Biden Keeps Requesting More Earmarks

Apparently the presidential candidates’ agreement to swear off earmarks does not apply to the Democratic  vice presidential nominee.  

Delaware Senator Joe Biden still has not released the complete list of his earmarks from all thirty-six of his years in the U.S. Senate.  While we may not be able to track down every ounce of pork he pulled from the federal Treasury in past years, we do know how much he is requesting for the upcoming fiscal year.

According to USA Today:

A $630 billion spending bill nearing final approval in Congress includes $6.6 billion for thousands of lawmakers’ pet projects, including $51.5 million requested by Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Biden when both presidential candidates have sworn off seeking any money.

At a time when Congress is negotiating a several-hundred billion dollar proposal to bailout Wall Street, shouldn’t our elected officials be trying to remove extraneous spending in order to prevent the country from falling deeper into debt?

It’s unfortunate that individual Republicans, as well as Democrats, are still requesting tens, if not hundreds of millions in personal earmarks. At least our presidential nominee, John McCain, “who doesn’t request earmarks, has said that as president, he would veto any bill containing them.” His Democratic rival who has requested earmarks in the past, but not this year, has only “pledged to reduce them.”

Doesn’t sound like Obama plans on taking firm line against congressional profligacy.