ASK Musings

No matter where you go, there you are.



October 2008



Vice Presidential Debate

Written by , Posted in Reviews

8:40 PM – I’m on a flight to Seattle. Well, I’m on the plane. And it’s hopefully full of a bunch of people who are as excited as I am. So many of us asked if the TVs were working.

8:50 PM – Oh man, I’m anxious. But watching MSNBC helps. Is this what conservatives feel when they watch Fox? Of course, Keith Olberman and Rachel Maddow’s snark has the added benefit of being based in reality. But ignorance is bliss, right, so maybe that’s why the folks on Fox always seem to be smiling. Palin always looks quite happy, that I know.

8:55 PM – Please take off soon. I want to get going.

9:00 PM – MSNBC’s signal has gone off. Only Fox has a signal. Are you KIDDING ME? Am I really going to have to watch the debate on Fox?

9:01 PM – Oh it’s back. Thank god(s).

9:03 PM – “Can I call you Joe?” It’s like she’s a small child. While I appreciate the etiquette, I think it’s interesting that she went that route. Very clever. But I think he’ll keep referring to her as governor.

9:04 STOP TALKING JET BLUE. I love you, but shut up. I don’t need a seven dollar blanket, even if it does come with a coupon from Bed Bath and Beyond.

9:06 PM – Wait. People didn’t want to join up with McCain? But it was a bi-partisan effort? Which is correct, Palin? 

9:07 PM – Oooh. Biden’s done things in his life. Violence Against Women Act. Damn right. Did he just subtly accuse Palin of going off topic? That was a little snide. I like it. But how will it read?

9:08 PM – She looked at him. Looks like the ticket learned from the first debate. And she’s looking at the camera. 96% of the time Obama is with dems. Good quote.

9:09 PM – Um – why is she whispering? Does she not know she has a microphone? I can control the volume on my end.

9:10 PM – SHUT UP JET BLUE. I DON’T WANT A BLANKET. Wait, did she just say Joe Six-Pack again? But she did bring up personal responsibility. Hmm, as an aside – does she not know how to pronounce ‘g’? Happenin’, talkin’, hopin’? Enunciate, please.

9:11 PM – Nice. Biden points out McCain didn’t think there was a sub-prime crisis, and Obama wanted the regulations back. Interesting . . .Oooh and now he brings up the fact that McCain said that he wants to do the same thing with health care that he did with banks. Um, no. Please.

9:13 PM – She definitely is not choking. Good work, debate prepares. But Biden – nice job pointing out that not only is the standard she’s using bogus, but if she does use it McCain looks worse. Fab.

9:15 PM – Oooh, look. She’s such a maverick that she can’t be bothered to answer the questions! She’s going to talk to the people. Um, it’s a debate. Talk to the people, but in the context of the debate. This isn’t a campaign rally.

9:17 PM – Oh Biden. Way to point out that he has values – they just are different. And the tax increase for rich people just restores them to the level they paid under Reagan.

9:18 PM – Please stop whispering. Seriously. It’s SO freaking condescending. It’s obnoxious.

9:19 PM – She doesn’t want the government running health care. Why don’t people get the difference between government provision and government funding? UGH.

Did he just bring up Exxon? Heh. Hitting her where she lives. And he refuted the small business claim she made. It’s so clear (to me, and I know I’m super-biased) that he knows his stuff.

9:20 PM – OH MAN. Did he just go there? He mentioned the bridge to nowhere and compared the horrible McCain health care plan to it. So good. It even got a gasp. It is just sickening to think that McCain and Palin want to tax health benefits and only provide a break for less than half the amount of the average worth of employer-provided benefits. Think 45 million uninsured is bad? How about 65 million!

9:22 PM – Nice. I like that Ifill followed up on a question from the Presidential debate. And I like that Biden had an answer.

9:23 PM – She is so condescending. It’s kind of amazing when people with nothing to back up their condescension come across as such poseurs.

9:24 PM – Go Ifill. Way to bring it back to the question. And then Palin points out she’s been doing this for 5 weeks? Um, door open . . . 

9:25 PM – Interesting – Biden makes it seem like McCain and Palin disagree on something Palin’s so proud of doing. Ha.

9:28 PM – Biden, I’m sorry, I’m not following. You and Obama disagreed two years ago? Shocking. 

9:29 PM – What is she doing? She’s controlling the debate to a degree, but she’s not actually answering the questions. The person in the seat next to me is watching CNN, and when Palin just changed the topic the approval just dropped dramatically. And how can she talk about energy when she’s not supporting alternative energy? She has everything to gain with oil drilling.

9:31 PM – Are you freaking kidding me? Of course it matters what caused climate change – otherwise you treat the symptoms and not the roots. Oh MAN. An “All of the above” approach? Hmm. Not sure I like that characterization. AND Biden brings it home.

9:34 PM – Drill baby drill? Is she for real?

9:36 PM – Interesting – Biden almost opened it up for McCain.

9:37 PM – Now it’s getting good. Damn straight that sam sex couple deserve the same rights. Oh wow. She doesn’t want it to get to marriage. But she is ‘tolerant.’ No one would oppose it in her administration? But she thinks marriage is only for a man and a woman.

9:38 PM – And this is where I part with the ticket. I understand that they need to not support it to get elected. That breaks my heart that a majority of people oppose civil rights. It’s disgusting to me that the only thing they seem to agree on is the continued discrimination of gay people. Ugh.

9:40 PM – Oh snap. She scores a point on Biden v Obama on the surge front. Interesting.

9:41 PM – Biden has an novel tactic – answer the question. Then get back to shooting down her comments. Relevetory.

9:42 PM – “White Flag of Surrender”? Interesting. Also interesting – the little tracker on CNN shows women really drop down when Palin talks about the troops.

9:44 PM – Go Biden. If Palin is going to attack Obama on something and McCain did it too, well, that’s risky. Don’t expect Biden to let that go.

9:46 PM – Biden knows his foreign policy. Or at least, he sounds like it. Love it.

9:47 PM – Um, I have thrown my hands up in frustration so many times when she starts speaking. Not as many as I thought, but still. Many, many times. – Wait, Cuba? Ah. Here’s where we go back to the “meeting without preconditions.” Is that horse dead yet? 

9:49 PM – My poor seat mates. I’m almost punching the TV. I’m having quite visceral reactions. I’m sorry, did she just say “our respect for women’s rights”? Isn’t she the one who wants to government to make decisions for women? She has no respect for womens’ rights. 

9:50 PM – Oh. Biden just schooled Palin and McCain on international affairs. Snap. It’s so entertaining to see how the minds work. Diplomacy has been MIA for the last eight years – and that hasn’t worked out so well.

9:51 PM – Is it odd that I just realized the anagram of Palin is Plain? But good to know that she supports a two-state solution. Any guesses on whether she had an opinion on the issue six weeks ago? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

9:52 PM – Um. When I hear “McCain-Palin Administration” I shudder. I actually shudder.

9:53 PM – He did it again. He’s answering the questions. I think when he does that, he pulls control of the debate back.

9:54 PM – UMMM, WHAT THE HECK? She doesn’t want to play the blame game? She doesn’t want to point fingers? And then she goes on to say they’ll return the government to the people – so then someone must have taken away the government from the people. Maybe . . . Bush?

9:55 PM – Oh thank god(s). My wine has arrived. Maybe it will calm me down.

9:56 PM – She’s not answering the questions again. I don’t understand. I can’t follow her. She’s just got a list of points someone told her to hit – and they’re not related to anything that is being asked. What is she doing, going on about Afghanistan?

9:58 PM – Biden so knows his stuff. I wish that she was required to actually answer the questions asked of her. That would be super interesting. But at least he got back to the question.

There are still 30 minutes left. I don’t know if I will make it. Part of me is sort of bummed she hasn’t totally screwed up. Especially because conservatives (and liberals) have been lowering expectations so much. Is it obvious to others that she doesn’t know what she’s talking about?

Additional side note – why should she? Yes, she’s the governor of a state. But I don’t think it’s a character flaw that she doesn’t have the foreign policy know-how that Biden has. The problem is that she shouldn’t be running for VP. She’s just not qualified.

10:03 PM – Okay, this is a big problem. I know my sister and I agree on this one. Biden voted for the war, and then changed his mind with different information and as time unfolds. But why is it bad when someone changes their mind? If it isn’t willy-nilly (heh, I love that term)? Why is educating one’s self, or realizing that something is going the wrong way and changing direction, a bad thing? Just cling to the sinking ship, because that’s how you prove your worth, right? Only people with blind allegiance to wrong ideas are real people, right? Washington outsider my rear end. She liked that bridge, and then changed her mind. She certainly knows what that’s all about.

10:09 PM – “Team of Mavericks”? Again. Giving one’s self a nickname immediately removes its relevance. 

10:11 PM – Doggone it? Doggone it? THIS IS NOT A DISNEY MOVIE. I’m sorry. Did she just give a “shout out” in a debate? That’s not okay. This is not a student council debate. This is a VICE PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE.

10:13 PM – That exchange about lame VP jokes was actually kind of funny. Bizarre. But funny.

10:14 PM – And we have the first reference to her special needs child. Ding.

10:16 PM – Oh good. Flexible Constitution. I’m super excited that Palin thinks the Constitution is flexible when it comes to her role. Great. Awesome. I’m sure that won’t lead to any abuse – I mean, Cheney didn’t abuse it. What could go wrong?

10:17 PM – Go Biden. Cheney is scary.

10:18 PM – Ah, non-sequitor theater. Didn’t Ifill just ask what her actual achillese heel is? Is this the equivalent of answering the “what’s your greatest weakness” by saying “I work too hard”? Ack. She’s running in circles. What is she talking about?

10:20 PM – Oh look. Biden had a variation on that theme. Whoops. But way to remind everyone that he’s had a rough time. Oh, and wow, did he just tear up? Wow. That actually kind of choked me up a little. And Palin just kind of doesn’t acknowledge anything that was said. She jumps back into the maverick line. She just goes back to the talking points and doesn’t . . . it’s interesting. She’s both super engaged and not engaged at all. It’s like she learned a script that told her to appear folksy by seeming like she gets it, while simultaneously not hearing what’s going on.

10:23 PM – Nice. Biden finally makes the call on the maverick thing. He knows his stuff and I kind of love it. No, I really love it. 

10:24 PM – Good question Ifill. When did you have to actually change your position on something? Wow. Love it. Biden’s talking about his time on the judiciary committee. He does think judicial philosophy matters, but didn’t at first.

10:25 PM – And she just does nothing with it. She . . . didn’t veto something. That’s definitely on the same par. And no, she hasn’t had “to compromise”?! That wasn’t the question. So she’s never changed her mind on something. Huh. Good to know. Whether she’s right or wrong, she’s doesn’t care. What matters is that she just stays the course. Super.

10:27 PM – Meandering . . . and bring it back Biden. Okay, your change will be – not questioning motives. And Palin throws out catch phrase after catch phrase:

“Walk the walk, don’t just talk the talk. At the end of the day, it’s for the greater good.”


10:29 PM – AND the mainstream media is brought up. Other than that – this isn’t much of a closing argument. Oh, here she goes. They are going to fight for the middle class. Oooh, dig at Michelle Obama there – she’s “always been proud to be an American.” What is going on? Did she just quote Reagan and call it a day?

10:30 PM – Biden just goes right for it. And he’s connecting, I think. 

Side note – Did he have a face lift? Or an eye lift? He doesn’t look as old as he should.

Back to the closing statement. NICE ENDING BIDEN

Whew. I am spent. Seriously spent. That was – well, Palin did better in that she didn’t totally choke. But she actually kind of reminded me of McCain in that she meandered and didn’t really answer the questions.

I need to focus on the pundits now. I hope she is not our vice president. I can’t handle a “Folksy” Vice President.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.