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Gammage Auditorium, ASU, that is.
October 13, 2004 4:07 PM   Subscribe

Bush & Kerry Round Three: Doin' Damage in Gammage
It was going to be done. again. I'm just the one doing it.
posted by whatnot (396 comments total)

 
i feel all tingly down there!
posted by quonsar at 4:09 PM on October 13, 2004


You coulda waited a couple of hours.

And anyway, who cares? The Sox take on the Yanks in an hour.
posted by xmutex at 4:11 PM on October 13, 2004


I've got 17 in the "Number of Comments" pool. Drat.
posted by jaronson at 4:11 PM on October 13, 2004


Gold Bond is good for that, q. ; >

The momentum is all on Kerry's side, and Furious George is tanking, so i'll just call it another Kerry win--3 for 3! (hey, i'm just like the AP, no?)
posted by amberglow at 4:13 PM on October 13, 2004


Them pre-shows are starting earlier and earlier.
posted by NewBornHippy at 4:15 PM on October 13, 2004


Since the debate is at Arizona State, anyone want to make a bet as to the first Pat Tillman reference?
posted by karmaville at 4:20 PM on October 13, 2004


In the spirit of amberglow's sentiment, here's Krugman's predux from yesterday's NY Times.
posted by psmealey at 4:20 PM on October 13, 2004


George Bush resembles a chimp in various ways which I will now enumerate: the size of his ears, his intelligence, the look of confusion on his face. Further, democrats are smarter than republicans, and would perform more ably in high positions of governmental power. Republican positions on the majority of issues lack both conceptual ingenuity and practical applicability, leading me to believe that they are dorks. Over all, given the facts, I draw the conclusion that Kerry will win the election.
posted by Hildago at 4:23 PM on October 13, 2004


C-Span will have live video streams of the debates (Real and Windows Media) available on the internets!
posted by Sirius at 4:24 PM on October 13, 2004


play debate bingo here
posted by amberglow at 4:26 PM on October 13, 2004


I've got 13 on the number of times Bush uses the "L" word.

Perhaps a drinking game is more appropriate:

1 drink for "Liberal"
2 for "Tax and Spend Liberal"
1 for "Flip-flop"
2 for "You can run but you can't hide"
3 for "It's Hard Work!"

I'll be toasted after the first half hour.
posted by groundhog at 4:27 PM on October 13, 2004


anyone want to make a bet as to the first Pat Tillman reference?

Or the first Christopher Reeve reference. I wonder if they'll talk about the Paralysis Act being stalled in the Senate.
posted by homunculus at 4:28 PM on October 13, 2004


I thought Bush did pretty well.
posted by cell divide at 4:28 PM on October 13, 2004


3 for "It's Hard Work!"

Nah, tonight's debate is about domestic policy. That's pretty easy. Taxes and services? Cut, cut, cut!
posted by psmealey at 4:29 PM on October 13, 2004


Schieffer's statements raise questions about objectivity
posted by homunculus at 4:29 PM on October 13, 2004


"The Sox take on begin losing another one to the Yanks in an hour".
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:32 PM on October 13, 2004


Oh whatnot, don't go stealing my thunder!

Actually, I'm happy the thread's on already. And its good to see that the pre-early returns are in.

Apparently voters felt compassion for the president as he sunk into a pile on the floor and cried while rocking himself back and forth and saying he wanted his mommy.
posted by fenriq at 4:32 PM on October 13, 2004


My position is unchanged.
posted by Hildago at 4:33 PM on October 13, 2004


Really, cell divide? I was all for him until he dropped to his knees and began speaking in tongues.

Of course, I was startled by Kerry's choice to appear in drag. Not to mention his claim to be channeling a 40,000-year-old discarnate entity named Elmo.

I hope Bob Schieffer is going to be okay, though. I didn't know a boomerang could sink that far into a human skull. What kind of crack are those ASU kids smoking?
posted by Sidhedevil at 4:33 PM on October 13, 2004


Nah, tonight's debate is about domestic policy.

I'll be surprised if they don't find a way to mention the dead babies or the missing nuclear materials.
posted by homunculus at 4:33 PM on October 13, 2004


watch for coded messages tho (and they won't be from Kerry to us).
posted by amberglow at 4:34 PM on October 13, 2004


Schieffer is a dunce. Expect softball questions to Bush, and GOP talking point bs to Kerry... you know, just like on Face the Nation every Sunday.

The Daily Howler took on Schieff the past couple days. Interestingly his brother was one of W's business partners in the Texas Rangers.
posted by psmealey at 4:37 PM on October 13, 2004


What do you mean by "coded messages", amber? Coded messages like "I thought the Dred Scott decision was bad" or "Willie Horton", or coded messages like "Afghanistan bananastand"?
posted by Sidhedevil at 4:37 PM on October 13, 2004


Is this the official or unofficial 3rd debate thread?
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 4:39 PM on October 13, 2004


I'm happy with the choice of O'Reilly as a moderator.
posted by NewBornHippy at 4:39 PM on October 13, 2004


The stars are now beginning to arrive on the red carpet in front of Gammage Auditorium, which was one of Frank Lloyd Wright's last projects. Sean Penn, looking radiant in a bright red tuxedo, arrives just behind Matt Stone and Trey Parker, who are dressed as Laura Bush and Lynne Cheney.
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 4:44 PM on October 13, 2004


What do you mean by "coded messages", amber? Coded messages like "I thought the Dred Scott decision was bad" or "Willie Horton", or coded messages like "Afghanistan bananastand"?
Dred Scott, unless Bush is on new meds.

NewBornHippy! : > (NSFW--testimony in case against O'Reilly))
posted by amberglow at 4:44 PM on October 13, 2004


Metafilter: Afghanistan bananastand.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:44 PM on October 13, 2004


and that happy little ray of sunshine Dick Cheney has something to tell us too
posted by amberglow at 4:48 PM on October 13, 2004


Who cares if the questions are loaded? They won't speak to them anyway, but will trot out their sound bites and point scoring; and at the end of the 120/90 secs, everybody will be going, 'So what was the question again?'
posted by carter at 4:49 PM on October 13, 2004


I hope Bush has some new words for us to learn tonight.
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 4:52 PM on October 13, 2004


Afghanistan bananastand.


(Courtesy of my imaginary boyfriend Donald Westlake.)
posted by Sidhedevil at 4:53 PM on October 13, 2004


What are the odd's that the question "Can you look into that there camera and swear that all the crap you promise tonight can be tracked in the coming 4 years and if there is not documented proof that you actually tried to have it passed as legislation or implemented by order,you will be willing to report to prison for the next four years?" will be asked of both esteemed candidates.
posted by mss at 4:55 PM on October 13, 2004


That should be the law, mss, but it'll never happen. We should actually hold them all accountable for their campaign promises--"no nation-building", and "i'm a uniter, not a divider" would be a good start.
posted by amberglow at 4:58 PM on October 13, 2004


amberglow: OK. Let me restate. I'm happy with O'Reilly's choice of a vibrator.
posted by NewBornHippy at 4:58 PM on October 13, 2004


Apropos of nothing, I've gotten really intoxicated right where the debate will be taken place.

amberglow, but Bush is a uniter! Just last night he brought together two warring tribes of mashed potatoes right on his dinner plate! If that's not demonstrative of his powers to unite, then I don't know what is!
posted by fenriq at 5:03 PM on October 13, 2004


mss: very low.

So who's ahead now?
posted by mwhybark at 5:03 PM on October 13, 2004


What three-word non-sequiter will Bush gift us with tonight?
posted by solistrato at 5:09 PM on October 13, 2004


i feel all tingly down there!

It's okay, quonsar, that just means you're becoming a woman!
posted by whatnot at 5:09 PM on October 13, 2004


I will be alone forever.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 5:12 PM on October 13, 2004


Or the first Christopher Reeve reference. I wonder if they'll talk about the Paralysis Act being stalled in the Senate.

Paralyzed in the Senate? Is it too early to be drunk?
posted by 327.ca at 5:14 PM on October 13, 2004


I believe the q meant: "you're making me feel all funny in the pants"
posted by bob sarabia at 5:15 PM on October 13, 2004


Oh, we know what the q meant. We know.

"Fudge is bacon!"
posted by solistrato at 5:16 PM on October 13, 2004


Where can I get a stream of it ? HUH? I'm still at work...
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 5:20 PM on October 13, 2004


That complaint against O'Reilly (my link goes to The Smoking Gun's scan of the whole whopping thing) is really quite something.

I have to say, though, that thinking about Bill O'Reilly's penis is just nauseating.

Groundhog, what is the opposite of "tax and spend liberal", anyway? "Borrow and spend conservative"?
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:20 PM on October 13, 2004


C-SPAN has live feeds.
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:23 PM on October 13, 2004


Also Yahoo News.
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:26 PM on October 13, 2004


Oh MY! A connection between tonights venue and IRAQ!!! GASP!
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 5:26 PM on October 13, 2004


Did Snow really say that job loss is a myth? WTF?
posted by amberglow at 5:27 PM on October 13, 2004


Do there need to be Hoovervilles on the White House lawn before these guys will admit that maybe the economy isn't so great?
posted by psmealey at 5:34 PM on October 13, 2004


Framing the discussion:

The Economist: The dismal science bites back
New Scientist: Are you listening, America?
posted by MzB at 5:38 PM on October 13, 2004


This debate is not going to help Kerry in the least -- unless Chimpy slips on his own banana and blurts out something REALLY stoopid (admittedly, a distinct possibility). The topic lends itself to fabricated statistics that can't be readily verified by the audience, conflicting data (There are [i]more[/i] jobs! There are [i]less[/i] jobs!) that fall into the same category, and mind-numbing number games that will have the audience rating it on who wore the snappiest tie. I don't think the future is very rosey for Kerry, so he'd damn well better play balls-to-the-wall cutthroat politics tonight.

A nice start would be referencing the voter fraud in Nevada. Does he have the cajones to mention it? (Howard Dean would.)
posted by RavinDave at 5:39 PM on October 13, 2004


Goddammit, the Yankees have already scored, and they've got two on with nobody out. In the first inning.

*looks around*

Wha?... Debate? Ah, the hell with this. C'mon, quonsar, let's you and me and the 40,000-year-old discarnate entity go get drunk.
posted by languagehat at 5:39 PM on October 13, 2004


Frickin' EZ-board pseudo-html crap. Grrrrrrrrr ....
posted by RavinDave at 5:52 PM on October 13, 2004


Baseball sucks.
posted by rushmc at 5:54 PM on October 13, 2004


Politics Sucks too
posted by edgeways at 5:59 PM on October 13, 2004


I already know who I'm voting for. Can I be excused from watching this one.

And politics sucks more than baseball ever could. Because it involves politicians.
posted by jonmc at 6:01 PM on October 13, 2004


debate's startin.
posted by Peter H at 6:02 PM on October 13, 2004


Math is hard.
posted by solistrato at 6:02 PM on October 13, 2004


Sidhedevil - Westlake is MINE!
posted by CunningLinguist at 6:03 PM on October 13, 2004


Oops. c-span appear to be dead. Oh, it's running MS (a least what's serving the error page is.)

Bummer.

But that's OK, I'll just follow it here, like I did for the past three debates.
I hope Mefi doesn't go down.
posted by NewBornHippy at 6:04 PM on October 13, 2004


MSNBC sucks worst of all.
posted by psmealey at 6:05 PM on October 13, 2004


Just would like to say, that as a debate indicator, the missus just kicked my butt in Scrabble - this means Bush will perform well (she usually does not win word games).

Next indicator will be a fight between the rabbits-- Wait! Debate started. Bunnies are saved!
posted by robocop is bleeding at 6:05 PM on October 13, 2004


Freedom is on the march! First mention of "nuisance" in response number one. All systems go!
posted by The God Complex at 6:07 PM on October 13, 2004


Freedom is on the march.

Fuckwit.
posted by 327.ca at 6:07 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush has a giant head on MSNBC--they zoomed in on him.

ah, Bush learned how to say "comprehensive strategy." How many times is it so far?
posted by amberglow at 6:07 PM on October 13, 2004


Notice Kerry did not say "test," but "measure."
posted by pealco at 6:08 PM on October 13, 2004


c-span has full split screen

blinking ... starting ... blink ... ing ...

(anyone else hearing the gymnasium like echo on Bush's mic? that's odd. no tinfoil, just bad sound mixing. kerry's mic is without any feedback or hum, however)
posted by Peter H at 6:08 PM on October 13, 2004


Here he comes, the smooth charmer.
posted by fenriq at 6:08 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush has been well coached this time. Look at him smiling blankly at Kerry while he speaks. Oops. Bush just lied... doh!
posted by zwemer at 6:08 PM on October 13, 2004


exgggastruations!
posted by Peter H at 6:08 PM on October 13, 2004


I like how he claimed that he didn't say he didn't care about Osama Bin Laden, when he clearly did. That's an ex-ag-ger-ay-shun.
posted by The God Complex at 6:08 PM on October 13, 2004


Let's stop those pesky exaggerations.
posted by geoff. at 6:09 PM on October 13, 2004


His smile isn't working the way they think it is. And he's bugged.
posted by amberglow at 6:09 PM on October 13, 2004


If he cannot control the blinking then the charm will not work properly.

He's definitely doing the rope-a-dope though. Soft spoken with good points so far.
posted by fenriq at 6:09 PM on October 13, 2004


WTF, the flu? These are the pressing issues?
posted by pealco at 6:09 PM on October 13, 2004


What! We're (Canada) going to produce a non-contaminated vaccine?

Fuckwit.
posted by 327.ca at 6:11 PM on October 13, 2004


Did he seriously just relate flu vaccines to tort reform? Hahaha. Yeah, all athough anti-vaccine lawsuits.

Or something.
posted by The God Complex at 6:11 PM on October 13, 2004


Don't get the flu shot, girlie man ! Smoke cigar !
posted by elpapacito at 6:12 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush looks like Graham from Florida when he's doing that smile.

"Hey, don't get a flu shot. (we fucked up)"
posted by amberglow at 6:12 PM on October 13, 2004


That's an ex-ag-ger-ay-shun.

He must think he's debating Gore again.
posted by psmealey at 6:13 PM on October 13, 2004


These are the pressing issues?

Well, whaddya want? Bob Schieffer is Bush's golfing buddy.

Next up: When is Kerry going to point out that Bush's spending agenda is at least as big as his?
posted by lodurr at 6:13 PM on October 13, 2004


"We want him dead or alive ... but we are not too worried about him. ... He is the one who needs to be worried," Bush said.

Holy crap, that ex-ag-ger-ray-shun is all over the internets!
posted by Ruki at 6:15 PM on October 13, 2004


Well, here's the quote:

So I don't know where he is. You know, I just don't spend that much time on him, Kelly, to be honest with you. I'm more worried about making sure that our soldiers are well-supplied; that the strategy is clear; that the coalition is strong; that when we find enemy bunched up like we did in Shahikot Mountains, that the military has all the support it needs to go in and do the job, which they did.

Here's the google cache of WhiteHouse source. (Expect it to be pulled.)
posted by dejah420 at 6:15 PM on October 13, 2004


Ouch, Kerry is using the latest news! Nice action!
posted by fenriq at 6:16 PM on October 13, 2004


God, everytime Bush looks over to the left at Kerry it's a total look of confused fear. Awesome.

(whoa, the President has never once vetoed a bill was a great shot, they've been holding that one!)
posted by Peter H at 6:16 PM on October 13, 2004


another quote: Osama fact check: Bush in March 03:
Q: But don't you believe that the threat that bin Laden posed won't truly be eliminated until he is found either dead or alive?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, as I say, we haven't heard much from him. And I wouldn't necessarily say he's at the center of any command structure. And, again, I don't know where he is. I -- I'll repeat what I said. I truly am not that concerned about him. I know he is on the run. I was concerned about him, when he had taken over a country. I was concerned about the fact that he was basically running Afghanistan and calling the shots for the Taliban.

posted by amberglow at 6:16 PM on October 13, 2004


Next up: When is Kerry going to point out that Bush's spending agenda is at least as big as his?

It's even bigger according to the WSJ (they used the administrations own numbers). His is over three trillion; even the republican spinmasters couldn't get Kerry's over 2 trillion which is way over.
posted by The God Complex at 6:17 PM on October 13, 2004


Wait, did someone actually say "Freedom is on the march" in the context of this debate?

My husband just got invited to open for some really really good performers at a famous club (somebody else cancelled and they asked him at the last minute) so my house is all in an uproar.

Anyway, we're watching the baseball game.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:17 PM on October 13, 2004


You know, I knew the "war on terror" would come up at some point, being the overarching issue of this election, but I was supremely disappointed to see it brought up by the moderator in the very first question of this alleged "domestic policy" debate.

Did he seriously just relate flu vaccines to tort reform? Hahaha. Yeah, all athough anti-vaccine lawsuits.

Yeah, but in fairness Kerry completely dodged the question too.

"A plan is not a litany of complaints." Heh. Good line.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 6:18 PM on October 13, 2004


Paygo!
posted by turaho at 6:18 PM on October 13, 2004


ex-ag-ger-ay-shun.

Hey, it's five freakin' syllables. Give the man some credit already. You can tell he does.
posted by soyjoy at 6:18 PM on October 13, 2004


It's funny, Bush is always on the attack, which probably plays to his constituency wonderfully. But is aggressive attack mode going to play with the so-called "undecideds" or is he going to just piss off most people?

I bet they have internets jobses in that 21st century he keeps talking about.
posted by fenriq at 6:18 PM on October 13, 2004


You can clearly hear the gaps while he listens to his earpiece when you listen to it on the radio.
posted by interrobang at 6:19 PM on October 13, 2004


This is a key question--on jobs leaving, and Bush is flubbing--there are no programs for worker education, or retraining. He's not answering at all. He's totally out of touch on this. And he knows it too.
posted by amberglow at 6:19 PM on October 13, 2004


I gave up teaching as a CAREER after 10 years because of NCLB.
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 6:19 PM on October 13, 2004


Cause the Chinese don't have the internets and can't write html for scrap, they'll buy the same but more expensive from our reformed wood factories.
posted by elpapacito at 6:20 PM on October 13, 2004


Go Kerry!
posted by amberglow at 6:21 PM on October 13, 2004


Anyway, we're watching the baseball game.

No you're not, you're reading about this debate, apparently.
posted by Peter H at 6:21 PM on October 13, 2004


Anyone seeing this and not seeing that Bush has been a total failure is just plain crazy.

Kerry's got the specifics and Bush keeps relying on broad sweeping plans that'll make things better.

Kerry is winning, again!
posted by fenriq at 6:22 PM on October 13, 2004


what's with the foaming? How can I not vote for someone who is so passionate that he froths on national tv?
posted by bafflegab at 6:22 PM on October 13, 2004


Is Bush foaming at the mouth? What is that thing on the right corner of his mouth?
posted by psmealey at 6:23 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush really has an arrogant ass grin plastered on his face this debate.
posted by zwemer at 6:23 PM on October 13, 2004


Is it me or is Bush doing much better than in the last two Debates? He's stuttering less, he's (almost) answering the question, he looks relaxed.
posted by fvw at 6:23 PM on October 13, 2004


"HOO! let me start (pause, transmit, suddenly confident) The Pell Grants!"
posted by Peter H at 6:25 PM on October 13, 2004


Anyone notice that Bush's right side of the face is starting to droop like Dick Cheney's?
posted by jeremias at 6:25 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush's record on Pell Grants: Bush Freezes Federal College Scholarship, or Pell Grant
Just as college tuition is rising and the buying power of grants continues to erode, President Bush has frozen the maximum Pell Grant at $4,050 in his FY 2005 education budget. This is the 3rd year in a row that Bush has frozen or cut the maximum Pell Grant.


Bush's smile is like a toddler showing his parents his doody.
posted by amberglow at 6:25 PM on October 13, 2004


Well, by "we" here, I mean my husband. This is one of the household tasks he takes charge of in return for my vermin-killing and heavy lifting skills.

We do have two televisions, but I am enjoying it more this way. Although elpapacito's comment, above, made my brain hurt.

Perhaps only someone for whom English is a second language can appreciate the true Zen koan quality of our President's eloquence.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:25 PM on October 13, 2004


I love that look of "yeah, I'm a dirty lil' rascal, ain't I?" on Bush's face
posted by fatbobsmith at 6:25 PM on October 13, 2004


Did bush just say unemployed people have more money because of his tax cuts?

what an idiot.
posted by Jeremy at 6:25 PM on October 13, 2004


"Wooooo"
Oh my God, Bush is imploding.

I wonder if my boss will let me sleep in work tomorrow if I tell him I stayed up late watching W piss himself.
posted by fullerine at 6:26 PM on October 13, 2004


okay, I know this is really petty but Bush has a hunk of spittle in the corner of his mouth that I can't stop looking at. ack!

on preview: thank god i'm not the only one ...
posted by whatnot at 6:26 PM on October 13, 2004


And there he goes downhill again, I was worried for a minute.
posted by fvw at 6:26 PM on October 13, 2004


Senator, noone's playing with your votes . . .
posted by jeremias at 6:27 PM on October 13, 2004


I thought Bush's stuttering a lot more.
posted by heimchen at 6:27 PM on October 13, 2004


KABOOM Sanctity of Marriage !
posted by elpapacito at 6:27 PM on October 13, 2004


I'm actually supposed to be writing an article about soy products. So you can see why this is infinitely more attractive.

In unrelated news, this made me laugh really hard.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:27 PM on October 13, 2004


Funny, Bush's record doesn't do well to speak for him in relation to balancing or getting our country out of debt.

Ooh, did Bush just call Kerry a liberal, again? BFD, Bush, BFD*.

* BFD = big fucking deal

amberglow, actually I can confirm that Bush's smile looks like a little boy proud of his poo! My boy makes that same face.
posted by fenriq at 6:28 PM on October 13, 2004


Somebody should really tell Bush to save the lame jokes for his partisan crowds. He always seems so bewildered when he looks up and sees everybody just staring at him.
posted by languagehat at 6:30 PM on October 13, 2004


The gay marriage response was bizarre as hell from Bush. Can someone translate?
posted by Peter H at 6:30 PM on October 13, 2004


Guys, I gotta tell you, Bush is doing exactly what he needs to do tonight. And Schieffer is doing nothing that hurts him and throwing OT hardballs at Kerry.

That said: good on Kerry for countering the tax-hike comments. And doing good right now on the gay rights answer: Make it about people, not "gays".
posted by lodurr at 6:30 PM on October 13, 2004


Boy, the moderater really is teh suck, is he not?
posted by dejah420 at 6:30 PM on October 13, 2004


I agree fvw. I think it might that he perceives Scheifer as an ally. And with that "is homosexuality a choice?" question, Bob, count me among the skeptics. What does that have to do with the election, other than giving GWB a chance to showboat for the anti-Sodomites?
posted by mwhybark at 6:30 PM on October 13, 2004


LITANY LIBERAL LITANY LIBERAL LITANY LIBERAL.

What do you think the talking points memo is for this debate?
posted by The God Complex at 6:31 PM on October 13, 2004


Referring to Dick's dyke daughter was such a great move, John... so to attack that, Smirky has to attack his Veeps daughter.
posted by dash_slot- at 6:31 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry nailed the same sex question too.

Let's see what Olbermann's got for a score.

One to minus two in Kerry's favor now.
posted by fenriq at 6:31 PM on October 13, 2004


right fenriq? it's so exactly the face.

Guns, God, and Gays--Schieffer's hit 2 out of 3 so far. Good boy! teh Rove is pleased.
posted by amberglow at 6:31 PM on October 13, 2004


Oh, shit. Kerry just said "faith without works is dead." He just officially lost the evangelicals.
posted by lodurr at 6:32 PM on October 13, 2004


The first question was awful and this moderator is awful so far. He hasn't asked Bush a hard question yet.

(out of mainstream! add that to the talking points)
posted by The God Complex at 6:33 PM on October 13, 2004


Culture of Life! This from the execution maestro of Texas! As governor he killed a deeply christian woman despite worldwide religious and church opposition.
posted by zwemer at 6:33 PM on October 13, 2004


I wonder if he's being fed info or if he's just got a voice in his ear telling him to calm down?
posted by fenriq at 6:34 PM on October 13, 2004


"out of the mainstream" is one that Bush actually memorized. It's not true, but better than "it's hard work" i guess.
posted by amberglow at 6:34 PM on October 13, 2004


Heh. Heh. Heh. Heh.

I hope it's not us.

Heh. Heh. Heh. Heh.






He's your President! This is comedy gold. Even our bad prime ministers own your guy!
posted by The God Complex at 6:34 PM on October 13, 2004


So far I'm not seeing anything that MSNBC bobble heads won't call a "resounding Bush victory" (with everyone else calling it a draw). Don't know what it'll take, but I'm hoping that Kerry will get a little more fired up.
posted by psmealey at 6:34 PM on October 13, 2004


First, did Bush just come up with that right-eyebrow-down look of cunning that he keeps using? I don't remember it being so prevalent. Second, who the hell is the sound engineer for this? There were AP photos of guys testing the sound all freaking day, yet the mikes - mostly on Bush, but sometimes on Kerry - seem to be going crazy. Third, let me know if you need any tips, Sidhedevil.
posted by soyjoy at 6:35 PM on October 13, 2004


three responses in one, forgive me

GodComplex - that's because they're close friends who golf together. But Bush is whiffing the softballs nonetheless.

whatnot - Bush just said he believes in a hos-spittle society. Maybe that's why he's got that goop in the corner of his mouth?

(great landmines here with abortion, gays, spittle...)

dash_slot - I cheared that, as well. CHANNEL THE GAY CHENEY!! hoop hoop hoop!
posted by Peter H at 6:35 PM on October 13, 2004


This answer is obviously being fed to him. He can't recite like that without help.
posted by amberglow at 6:36 PM on October 13, 2004


kerry is an extreme leftist?

*baffles and boggles*
posted by sciurus at 6:36 PM on October 13, 2004


Lodurr, what do you mean "lost the evangelicals"? If there was a single evangelical in this country who was going to vote for Kerry, I'll eat my hat.

Zwemer, remember that he didn't just fry Karla Faye Tucker, he made fun of her on TV.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:36 PM on October 13, 2004


So far I'm not seeing anything that MSNBC bobble heads won't call a "resounding Bush victory" (with everyone else calling it a draw). Don't know what it'll take, but I'm hoping that Kerry will get a little more fired up.

They tried to say that last time, too, and after the weekend Kerry's two point victory turned into a 15 point victory, so we'll see how it really turns out. Maybe the American public is finally wising up.
posted by The God Complex at 6:37 PM on October 13, 2004


The realtime linkage and factcheckery is awesome, persons responsible.
posted by mwhybark at 6:38 PM on October 13, 2004


amberglow, absolutely. I love how every time you see Bush looking at Kerry his thought balloon is clearly, "hows this guy thinking up all these responses by himself? FUCK"
posted by Peter H at 6:38 PM on October 13, 2004


Information technology in healthcare? That's craaaazy talk!

Ouch, that attack on Kerry's Senate record, true or not, is harsh.

Uh oh, here comes Kerry with the Early Childhood Healthcare bills he wrote in the 90's. Why won't Kerry call him out as the lying asshat he really is?
posted by fenriq at 6:38 PM on October 13, 2004


So the moderator here is one participant's golf buddy and business-partner-in-law. Whatever happened to that "liberal media" everyone was so fired up about, again?

Soyjoy, thanks! I will pester you if I have any pressing questions relating to either soy or joy.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:40 PM on October 13, 2004


Shit, dawg. We need to integrate health care with IT. I gotta get on that.
posted by psmealey at 6:40 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry just said "faith without works is dead." He just officially lost the evangelicals.

But gained a lot of Catholics.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 6:40 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry's on the defensive tho, which is bad. He needs to hit Bush harder.

Bush is insane--what was that--a joke about credible news organizations?
posted by amberglow at 6:42 PM on October 13, 2004


Moderator sucks, and boy did Bush have a drink before coming on tonight? His brain appears to be back

On preview: oh, forget that
posted by bonaldi at 6:42 PM on October 13, 2004


Yay it's not credible to quote leading news organization ? Reverend Moon will not be pleeeeased, nor Rupert
posted by elpapacito at 6:42 PM on October 13, 2004


"WELL NEVER MIND" OH SHITTTTT! bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug bug
posted by Peter H at 6:43 PM on October 13, 2004


Ouch, that attack on Kerry's Senate record, true or not, is harsh.

Well, he did call him out and say he was misleading. I wish he'd just call him a liar, but I doubt it would go over well.

Personally, I think Bush looks as bad (appearance wise) as he did in the first two. #1 he was grimacing and angry. #2 he was gritting his teeth and angry. #3 he's smiling with mouth agape and looks like a fool.

Bush: you shouldn't quote news sources. like his stats are more credible? I don't think his tone is going to go over well with moderates.

"our health-care is the envy of the world"

he's a fucking lunatic! hahahhahaa. that's rad. (ok, i'm losing the caps now. the site is too slow.)
posted by The God Complex at 6:43 PM on October 13, 2004


"Will lead to rationing". Heathcare is so fucked.
posted by interrobang at 6:43 PM on October 13, 2004


Holy shit, there it is, Bush nearly lost it and now looks like a freaking dumbass!

Nevermind! Nevermind! Nevermind! Hahahaha!

Credible news organizations? Bush said the world credible and didn't get struck down by a lightning bolt, that proves there is no God.
posted by fenriq at 6:43 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry is losing.

He's acting like the election is in March and they have 6 more debates.

Dear Terry McAuliffe ... next time we'll chose our own candidate, if you don't mind teribly, mmm'k?
posted by RavinDave at 6:43 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry referring to news organisations as calling Bush's critique of Kerry's Health Plan @fiction@ was classic - he found a way to call Bush a liar.

"Oh - never mind.."

Ha!
posted by dash_slot- at 6:43 PM on October 13, 2004


I'm sorry, did what bush just did count as blaming the media? I'm trying to play this drinking game fairly…

Also, what's with Kerry's BlueCross BlueShield commercial?
posted by fvw at 6:44 PM on October 13, 2004


Sidhedevil, I'm also an expert on da floyjoy.

Didn't anyone ever tell Bush you're not supposed to put the buggy before the horse?
posted by soyjoy at 6:45 PM on October 13, 2004


i come to metafilter to confirm the spittle.
i am satisfied.
posted by Oddly at 6:45 PM on October 13, 2004


I'm confused. Last week the president said Canadian drugs would kill us, now he wants their flu vaccine?
posted by kirkaracha at 6:45 PM on October 13, 2004


"Our health care system is the envy of the world."

*cue wild laughter from world*
posted by languagehat at 6:46 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush is foaming at the mouth again.
posted by waldo at 6:46 PM on October 13, 2004


PBS Newshour had a great thing on Soc. Sec. yesterday, and how you can't take the young out of the program without collapsing it entirely.
posted by amberglow at 6:47 PM on October 13, 2004


My wife just figured out why Bush underfunded No Child Left Behind.

They can't vote so, well, fuck'em!

BTW, Kerry is pulling away over on Olbermann's running fight card.
posted by fenriq at 6:47 PM on October 13, 2004


Sidhevil, the moderator was chosen and/or approved by Bush Corp.
posted by Peter H at 6:47 PM on October 13, 2004


Schieffer is way biased--his language is much harsher towards Kerry, so far on every question.
posted by amberglow at 6:49 PM on October 13, 2004


Does anyone else think Bush's cadence is obvious evidence that he's getting prompted? It just seems so much more obvious in this debate.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:49 PM on October 13, 2004


I woulda thought the US healthcare is good - but only 'cos 25% of your people are excluded. Heck, I just think of how better UK hospitals would be, if we could keep the poorest 25% out!
posted by dash_slot- at 6:50 PM on October 13, 2004


oh, btw, amberglow i just got BINGO

(on two cards, no less)

great play by Kerry comparing other wars and Presidents' ability to still make jobs.
posted by Peter H at 6:50 PM on October 13, 2004


Olbermann said Kerry just scratched his eye and gave Bush the finger. Did anyone else see it? I don't want to rewind just yet but holy shit the GOP will have a field day with that!
posted by fenriq at 6:52 PM on October 13, 2004


Awwww, man, when he said "I got more e-mail on this question than any other," I had a brief moment of hope it would be "Mr. President, how many times have you been arrested?" Darn.
posted by soyjoy at 6:53 PM on October 13, 2004


Civil Disobedient, yes, absolutely. No train of thought, just blurts, like he's at a karaoke bar reading song lyrics to song he doesn't know.

I can't believe Bush just pronounced sanity clearly, btw.
posted by Peter H at 6:54 PM on October 13, 2004


Sidhevil, the moderator was chosen and/or approved by Bush Corp.

And also by Kerry. The moderators were listed by name and agreed to by both campaigns in the pre-debate "Memorandum of Understanding" or whatever it was called.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 6:54 PM on October 13, 2004


As long as a 5.50 American remains competitive with a used to 50 cents Mexican, the American will get the job !

.....*crickets* *silence*
posted by elpapacito at 6:54 PM on October 13, 2004


No fair, I've got at most two squares in any line or column. Though playing the drinking games and the bingo at the same time might not increase my success at the latter.
posted by fvw at 6:55 PM on October 13, 2004


Peter : > (and it's from Republicans for Kerry)

Bush was talking out of both sides of his mouth on this immigrant answer.
posted by amberglow at 6:55 PM on October 13, 2004



Do there need to be Hoovervilles on the White House lawn before these guys will admit that maybe the economy isn't so great?


they would hail it as an indicator of economic recovery, tout it as innovation in the housing sector, and award halliburton a $20 billion contract to provide infrastructure.
posted by quonsar at 6:55 PM on October 13, 2004


Does anyone else think Bush's cadence is obvious evidence that he's getting prompted? It just seems so much more obvious in this debate.

YES.
posted by interrobang at 6:55 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush said "fiscal sanity."

And Kerry's pop culture references are getting tired. Tony Soprano?
posted by ed at 6:57 PM on October 13, 2004


Nice, Kerry just rolled out minimum wage, he'll lose alot of the small business vote but they were already pissed because he wants to roll back their taxes anyway.
posted by fenriq at 6:59 PM on October 13, 2004


great response by Kerry on Bush's comment about Mexican borders (with false authority of being Texas' governor. I am in Austin, btw and even local news proves Bush is bullshitting huge)

oh, this is so much fun.
posted by Peter H at 6:59 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush doesn't know how to listen at all, or appear to be listening.

Kerry's rocking on the minimum wage thing.
posted by amberglow at 6:59 PM on October 13, 2004


What's with this constant education crap? Education = jobs? Sure, glutton the job market with boneheads with a community college degree. That's "industrial sector" fast food, eh, Dubya?
posted by ed at 7:00 PM on October 13, 2004


education...education...education...

Why can't he answer any question about job loss at all?
posted by amberglow at 7:01 PM on October 13, 2004



Schieffer is way biased--his language is much harsher towards Kerry, so far on every question.


I totally agree. I thought that link the other day was bullshit and it seemed like he wouldn't be biased, but his language is definitely more harshly critical of Kerry. It's subtle but it's clearly there.

Why does Bush keep talking about education when everyone knows he undercut it?
posted by The God Complex at 7:01 PM on October 13, 2004


Masterful switch here on minimum wage to education -- and a really telling failure by Schieffer to call for a reply by Kerry. Bush sat there and bullshitted on NCLB. And now he can't answer it.
posted by lodurr at 7:02 PM on October 13, 2004


I just realized that Bush's head looks totally huge. Rather than tilting the camera up, the camera operator has zoomed in more, such that Bush's noggin', in comparison to Kerry's, takes up a considerably larger percentage of the screen.
posted by waldo at 7:02 PM on October 13, 2004


And now with the No Turd Left Unpolished Act. The very idea that Bush cares about minority kids makes me snort in disgust.

What a bastard.
posted by dash_slot- at 7:02 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush is so lucky to have gotten out of gradeschool before No Child Left Behind, with its demands for reading rightin and rithmatic (as well as thought procession and cognition)

"No Litmus Test", bullshit. What are Bush's ideals? Hi-dollar topics like gay rights, abortion, the need for overturning in election disputes. Fuck that George. Why interrupt the question on that before specifics? (in my best Truman Capote) hmm?
posted by Peter H at 7:04 PM on October 13, 2004


And Kerry's pop culture references are getting tired. Tony Soprano?

There were chuckles from the audience on that—they seemed to like it.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:05 PM on October 13, 2004


someone is really impressed that he knows the word 'litmus'. Good for you bunky! You're special!
posted by lumpenprole at 7:05 PM on October 13, 2004


The most ridiculous thing about the constant discussion about education is that education is a local issue. Federal education funding is a teeny-tiny little bit of education funding; schools are funded with local tax dollars.
posted by waldo at 7:05 PM on October 13, 2004


Yeah, just retrain them. They'll fall right into this high-paying bio-tech positions.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:06 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry is making his points, "Bush broke faith with the American people when he took this nation to war", great line!
posted by fenriq at 7:07 PM on October 13, 2004


for the rebroadcast, pay attention to, 65 minutes in:

on iraqi citizens:
"trained (looks down,blink blink,not thinking but clearly listening) by ... the end of the year"
posted by Peter H at 7:10 PM on October 13, 2004


"breaking faith with the American people" was excellent by Kerry.

I call soundbite--that'll be repeated on the news.
posted by amberglow at 7:10 PM on October 13, 2004


Olbermann's got it at 10 for Kerry and -3 for Bush so far.

We'll see how he spins the "intangibles" this time.
posted by fenriq at 7:11 PM on October 13, 2004


When are they going to ask about Stem Cell?
posted by The God Complex at 7:12 PM on October 13, 2004


amberglow, I beat you to it, nyah, nyah, nyah!
posted by fenriq at 7:13 PM on October 13, 2004


Notice how Bob S. now has to remind Bush that he actually has 2 minutes to respond. After he stumbled so badly...
posted by mmahaffie at 7:14 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush reduced to a quiet stammering marshmallow on the NAACP question. Brilliant move from Kerry.
posted by ed at 7:15 PM on October 13, 2004


I just realized that Bush's head looks totally huge. Rather than tilting the camera up, the camera operator has zoomed in more, such that Bush's noggin', in comparison to Kerry's, takes up a considerably larger percentage of the screen.

I think they just zoom in and start panning out when it's relevant to show the light thingie.

I don't get him using the "Kerry wants the UN to have a veto" line. Does he think Kerry won't immediately respond by pointing out Bush is a liar? It's not like he didn't do that twice already. Perhaps it would help if he called Kerry a liberal one more time.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:15 PM on October 13, 2004


quonsar, please post your blinking bush image.
it's yours, i would hate to take credit for it.

(great response by Kerry on fighting the senate as a president on the assault weapons ban - of course, why would Bush want that? the ban comes from Hinkley's attempt at ?)
posted by Peter H at 7:16 PM on October 13, 2004


wtf is this? education is his answer for everything? and he lied about pell grants again. He's not answering at all.

fenriq: great minds think alike : >
posted by amberglow at 7:16 PM on October 13, 2004


am I crazy, or are they wearing the same suit and tie? is this something everyone knows? is it part of debate procedure to stop people from voting on the best dressed?
posted by twiggy at 7:16 PM on October 13, 2004


oboy, here comes the pray-off. wake me when it's over.
posted by lumpenprole at 7:17 PM on October 13, 2004


"calmness in the storms"

On the Internets? Can you really trust a President who doesn't know the difference between singular and plural?
posted by ed at 7:17 PM on October 13, 2004


What's up with this dickweed moderator, he's lobbing softballs . . . no . . .nerfballs to Bush.

Re: "armies of compassion". Help. I'm scared.
posted by jeremias at 7:18 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush does seem to have some really weird pauses...I mean, perhaps it's tinfoil hat time for Dejah...but it sure seems like he's being prompted sometimes.

I'm just astounded at how unfair the moderator is being. I wonder if any of the pundits will comment on the obvious bias.

Holy mother of Cervantes...Bush just went off the evangelical deep end for a second there....he can "feel people praying for him" and we're sending out the "armies of compassion".

WTF?
posted by dejah420 at 7:18 PM on October 13, 2004


OMG!!! Armies of Compassion is SO my new hardcore band!
posted by lumpenprole at 7:19 PM on October 13, 2004


Ok, this dude sucks (the moderator). He's asking all these foreign policy questions and he hasn't done anything with stem cell (which the president is weak on). Just over ten minutes left. Will he end with it?
posted by The God Complex at 7:19 PM on October 13, 2004


All those people around this great country of ours, prayerating on me and my family, prayerating on my girls, yeah! Yeah, invoke the twins!
posted by fenriq at 7:19 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry's rocking on this religion question too.
posted by amberglow at 7:20 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush thinks if he dresses like Kerry people will get confused and vote for him.
posted by kirkaracha at 7:20 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush speaks eloquently on religious tolerance, in a way that's hard to attack. He's more liberal than his paw, on that. That's a bonus point to him there. And that's from me.
posted by dash_slot- at 7:20 PM on October 13, 2004


My Understanding (as someone who goes to school board meetings every other week despite having no political reason to do so) is that NCLB sets standards that could require huge expenditures to meet, without providing the funding to meet them. If the schools don't meet the benchmarks the way can be opened up for funneling the kids and any state and federal aid for those students into private schools (where the same testing is not required by the government) or other school districts.
posted by drezdn at 7:21 PM on October 13, 2004


Twiggy, same flag pin too
posted by Outlawyr at 7:21 PM on October 13, 2004


Someone needs to animate Bush's slapping down gesture with a Lil' Jon booty shaking girlie backing that ass up.

(also - a good point to make is that Bush has two minutes in between questions to be fed answers while Kerry is talking, so he can appear more candid, and on split screen there's a lot of moments he looks down like he's hearing something)
posted by Peter H at 7:22 PM on October 13, 2004


"My religion is personal."



He just really doesn't fucking care anymore at this point, does he.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:22 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry's rocking on this unity question too. Slipping McCain in there was masterful.
posted by amberglow at 7:22 PM on October 13, 2004


TGC - Kerry had his chance with stem cells on a question about 30 minutes ago, but he ended up answering another part of the question and failed to jump on it. Argh. Could have been so easy (Chris Reeves, etc.). Oh well...

Now they're talking about their belief in the Invisible Boogie Man.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:22 PM on October 13, 2004


$5 via paypal for anyone who can show me video of the spittle's removal.
Was the spittle a metaphor for WMDs?
We thought we saw it, but then it was gone?
posted by Oddly at 7:23 PM on October 13, 2004


Someone drew Bush's mouth on crooked before the debate. I've never seen a guy talk out of one side of his mouth so much. Doesn't that mean he's lying?

Ooh, retreat and defeat is a good tagline, not accurate but the GOP-heads will have a great time with it.
posted by fenriq at 7:24 PM on October 13, 2004


Yes, the ties are exactly the same. Very odd, in the second debate Bush wore a blue tie while kerry wore a red tie.

Oooh, self deprecation, attacking his own language skills. Interesting tactic.
posted by fvw at 7:26 PM on October 13, 2004


Jesus what a LAME ASS last question. LAME. ASS. QUESTION.

Let's all talk about how we love our wives, and how we're all such nice people and let's hug each other 'cause we're all friends.

Goddamnit.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:27 PM on October 13, 2004


Schieffer sucks.

Kerry wins it, by a mile.
posted by amberglow at 7:27 PM on October 13, 2004


Tosses up a softball at the end so Bush can talk about his family. This is fucking weak. Somebody better call this guy out for his bullshit moderation. That was unbelievable. Did I miss the question on stem cell? I don't remember anything.
posted by The God Complex at 7:28 PM on October 13, 2004


Nice response from Kerry on the "Love thy neighbor as thyself" quote. Lots of points with non-fundamentalist Christians.

Bush keeps coming back to the same three or four accomplishments--NCLB, Pell Grants...um, something else, I think. Is that all he can cite as the domestic accomplishments of his administrations?

Jeers to Schieffer for the softball (for both sides) closing question. No surprise that both candidates give the proper level of self-effacement on that one.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:28 PM on October 13, 2004


Tosses up a softball at the end so Bush can talk about his family. This is fucking weak. Somebody better call this guy out for his bullshit moderation. That was unbelievable. Did I miss the question on stem cell? I don't remember anything.

Kerry gives first final statement again? Bad luck.
posted by The God Complex at 7:28 PM on October 13, 2004


Jesus what a LAME ASS last question. LAME. ASS. QUESTION.

Let's all talk about how we love our wives, and how we're all such nice people and let's hug each other 'cause we're all friends.

Goddamnit.

Did anyone else see Theresa Kerry sitting next to Michael J. Fox. Apparently he was shaking. Yet no question about stem cell research. This is so fucking sad.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:29 PM on October 13, 2004


"What is the most important thing you've learned from the strong women around you?" That's the best last question this goofball can come up with? Like we really need to hear about how Bush met his wife. And Kerry's mom.
posted by billsaysthis at 7:29 PM on October 13, 2004


"I believe I can offer tested, strong leadership that can calm the waters of a troubled world."

Hmmmmmm... subliminable? "I piloted a goddamn boat in Viet Nam, unlike you, Chimpy."
posted by soyjoy at 7:30 PM on October 13, 2004


Yes, the ties are exactly the same. Very odd, in the second debate Bush wore a blue tie while kerry wore a red tie.
posted by fvw at 7:31 PM on October 13, 2004


quonsar, please post your blinking bush image


posted by quonsar at 7:31 PM on October 13, 2004


Sorry about the sorta double post. MeFi posting error.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:31 PM on October 13, 2004


WHAT A SHITTY LAST QUESTION. No offense to women but what the fuck, given our end of times dilemma. What a goddamn tool.
posted by Peter H at 7:32 PM on October 13, 2004


That moderator was well biased to Bush, and yet on the whole, Bush still didn't nail it. No stem cell question? That woulda gone Kerry's way for sure, and is the most topical with the loss of Christopher Reeve. It says a lot for Kerry that he agreed to a partisan moderator, if you ask me.

Closing statements:
Kerry - preceded by a graceful last answer ... one last Vietnam ref.... otherwise general fare.
Bush - Texan painting - he coulda made more of that, with it's "morning in america" echo...more education ... generalities...
someone told him to repeat the armies of compassion... WoT...
posted by dash_slot- at 7:32 PM on October 13, 2004


Hahaha, Bush just got smacked in public by Kerry! Hahaha. He looked like he wanted to start shooting!

Bush didn't win this, no way, he played to his troops but didn't do much to get any undecided votes.
posted by fenriq at 7:33 PM on October 13, 2004


That moderator was well biased to Bush, and yet on the whole, Bush still didn't nail it. No stem cell question? That woulda gone Kerry's way for sure, and is the most topical with the loss of Christopher Reeve. It says a lot for Kerry that he agreed to a partisan moderator, if you ask me.

Closing statements:
Kerry - preceded by a graceful last answer ... one last Vietnam ref.... otherwise general fare.
Bush - Texan painting - he coulda made more of that, with it's "morning in america" echo...more education ... generalities...
someone told him to repeat the armies of compassion... WoT...basically mundane.

I think Kerry won on debating points, but Bush definitely shored up his base. It's still neck & neck.
posted by dash_slot- at 7:34 PM on October 13, 2004


Also, I think we need a do-over this debate was so weak, moderated by Quonsar!
posted by billsaysthis at 7:35 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush was fed his closing statement and it didn't touch on one thing spoken of during the debate.

MSNBC isn't calling it for Bush--i'm shocked!
posted by amberglow at 7:35 PM on October 13, 2004


dash, Bush's base isn't enough to win. It's a fatal mistake by Rove.

and I read today that they're estimating 15 million new voters this election.
posted by amberglow at 7:38 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry missed a zinger, I think, on Bush's early reference to the Medicare prescription benefit...which takes effect in 2006. Bush has been president since 2001, and the benefit doesn't go into effect until 2006? Kerry had a great chance there for something along the lines of, "If I'm president, it won't take five years for my programs to go into effect."
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:38 PM on October 13, 2004


I thought Bush would rock Kerry on this last question, because it's a touchy-feely bullshit question, but Kerry did really well, perhaps as well as Bush. A couple of jokes...well played.
posted by waldo at 7:38 PM on October 13, 2004


Is anyone here from Massachusetts? Aren't you guys just about ready to take up pitchforks and torches (figuratively, of course, Mr Ashcroft) every time Bush and Cheney make one of the those snippy little cracks about a "Senator from Massachusetts"? Do they think you are all just a bunch of jerks up there?
posted by mmahaffie at 7:42 PM on October 13, 2004


verdict, mefites?
posted by mwhybark at 7:42 PM on October 13, 2004


And Kerry Wins! the tie wars.

Bush's smile is like a toddler showing his parents his doody.

I saw it more as a child's broad smile as he waits for a pat on the head for getting something right. He always smiled this "special" smile whenever 'No Child Left Behind' left his lips-- and it left his lips many, many times. NCLB was his answer to the question of raising the minimum wage, affirmative action, et al. Yet he refused to alknowledge that it was underfunded. I can only conclude that he views NCLB as his best, shiniest effort after 4 years.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:42 PM on October 13, 2004


We got us a new president.

Kerry got into America's comfort zone in debate one, showed us he can be a fighter in debate 2, and became this "zen master" in debate 3. I really didn't except such a strong showing from Kerry. Along with his politics I think he just won over the last of the undecideds.

Now to push the lib candidate for those who dont want to vote for Kerry but would rather not vote for Bush.
posted by skallas at 7:43 PM on October 13, 2004


Hey, my internets were broken, so I missed out on the hilarity here. Le boo. Le hiss.
posted by Sidhedevil at 7:43 PM on October 13, 2004


I agree that the final question was pathetically stupid and obviously a lob to Bush to end it on a high note with how much he loves his wife and how great his two daughters are. I noticed that he didn't mention his mother, strange. She's a First Lady herself and probably no damned slouch at all.

I wonder if she asked him to not mention her because she's kind of ashamed of his performance?
posted by fenriq at 7:46 PM on October 13, 2004


quonsar, thank you. That belongs in MoMa!

And for contrast, let's compare the tapes of that image, to one from tonight, watch now...



A new response!
posted by Peter H at 7:47 PM on October 13, 2004


Face facts. Bush lost the 2nd debate and STILL got enough of a bump in the polls to cool Kerry's momentum. Any edge Kerry had is amelieorated by the fact that he is expected to debate better. Bush's performance was certainly better than in D2, and with the time ticking down that is bad news for the Kerry camp.
posted by RavinDave at 7:48 PM on October 13, 2004


Listening to the callers' comments on CSPAN—nearly all the pro-Bush callers are trying to push the "Bush is a better Christian than Kerry" meme. I don't think it'll fly; I think Kerry effectively addressed that tonight. (Well, maybe not for the fundamentalists, for whom "Christian" is code for "non-Catholic," but for most Christians.)
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:49 PM on October 13, 2004


I never thought I'd say this (and I certainly wouldn't have said it before the debates), but I'm ready to vote comfortably for the zen master. Kerry was more courageous than Clinton. He proved that he could speak to the American people. He demonstrated that he was a man of convictions willing to work out bilateral solutions at the right time and the right place. And I think he raised the bar of poltiical discourse from the ignoble morass it's languished in over the past four years.

If Kerry doesn't win the election, I'll be damn surprised.
posted by ed at 7:50 PM on October 13, 2004


Can anyone tell me the exact amount of time that Laura was shown during the last question and the amount of time that Teresa was shown? It seems the shot lingered longer on Laura and her daughters.
posted by gluechunk at 7:50 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush Won.
posted by iamck at 7:51 PM on October 13, 2004


And, mmahaffie, I'm from Massachusetts and my internets were broken. COINCIDENCE?!?!?!? I think not.

RavinDave, how exactly did Terry McAuliffe pick the candidate? I don't know about you, but my internets tell me that Kerry got way more votes in the primaries than your boyfriend Howard Dean. Did Terry McAuliffe hypmotize the electorate or sumpn?

I guess if Howard Dean were running, GW would have just resigned rather than face the humiliation or something. What's the weather like on your planet, anyway? Though I have to say it would have been fun to see Howard and George in a screaming match.

And, re: "education is a local issue"--it's true that, in the US, the Federal government can't fix education. They can, however, ruin it by saddling it with a bunch of irrelevant unfunded mandates.
posted by Sidhedevil at 7:51 PM on October 13, 2004


This was possibly the worst moderated debate I've ever seen in all the debates I've watched. Schieffer was beyond partisan. That was outrageous. I've never seen so many newspeople out themselves politically as I have with this election.

Bush came off better in this debate than he did in the first two...but then again, that's not a particularly high hurdle, is it? And it helps that he was being tossed cotton-candy questions that he was allowed to completely ignore.

I think he lost...he didn't answer the questions he was asked, he seemed a little foggy on the debate process, and the armies of compassion thing...well, that's just spooky, that is. No wonder his handlers have only let him have 15 news conferences.
posted by dejah420 at 7:52 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry wins by 80/20 on MSNBC poll. That's a huge margin. That blogger will tot it up for Kerry too. I do believe Kerry may pull ahead in the polls now - which are so skewed to Bush that Kerry is probably in the lead, actually.
posted by dash_slot- at 7:53 PM on October 13, 2004


I was disappointed in Kerry a lot of times. I've gotten used to his being able to deliver answers that actually address the question and bring them in right under the wire. But he got off to a bad start on the "will we ever be as safe as we were during the decades of imminent nuclear armageddon" question, in that it needed a little more folksiness, but instead he went right onto the attack - and attacked with the same lines he'd used before.

Similarly, in the last question, he did a good job of parrying the cutesy we-sure-love-our-wives crap (and God, am I sick of hearing that broken-promise-to-Laura anecdote that I first watched him deliver in a practice speech four years ago), but he missed the opportunity to close that out with something, anything that would highlight why women should vote for him instead of the other guy.

He was competent, he was presidential, etc. but there were so many opportunities to knock it out of the park that he just passed on. So this will probably be scored for fratboy.
posted by soyjoy at 7:54 PM on October 13, 2004


verdict, mefites?

MeFites think Kerry won. Freepers think Bush won. Film at 11.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:54 PM on October 13, 2004


Need some wood?
posted by Dukebloo at 7:55 PM on October 13, 2004


iamck - linking to LGF to say Bush won is like linking to DU to say Kerry won...
posted by Stuart_R at 7:56 PM on October 13, 2004


CBS Poll of undecided and swing voters:
39% Kerry Won
25% Bush
36% Draw
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:57 PM on October 13, 2004


I never thought I'd say this (and I certainly wouldn't have said it before the debates), but I'm ready to vote comfortably for the zen master. Kerry was more courageous than Clinton.

ed : > (i like Kerry more now too--it really has been the first times i've seen him in depth.)
posted by amberglow at 8:00 PM on October 13, 2004


Watching CNN now: still seven of twenty four or undecided. Who are these idiots?

TGC - Kerry had his chance with stem cells on a question about 30 minutes ago, but he ended up answering another part of the question and failed to jump on it. Argh. Could have been so easy (Chris Reeves, etc.). Oh well...

What was the question?

So far nobody has brought up that he didn't ask about stem cell. I guess they're just going to ignore it.
posted by The God Complex at 8:00 PM on October 13, 2004


Remember that #1 has forbidden us to link to the small viridian pigskins, ever, ever, ever.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:01 PM on October 13, 2004


Chris Matthews on MSNBC looks disappointed (by Bush? he's been creaming for him for years)
posted by amberglow at 8:03 PM on October 13, 2004


RavinDave -- I understand what you're saying. I used to live in Boston, now I live in Nebraska (right near you, in fact). Before I moved here, I never realized just how fundamentally ignorant this country was -- and just how many of these people are "out there."

I like reading these threads, and naturally I'm voting for Kerry, but I think some of the people here are seriously overestimating Kerry's performance tonight. At best it was a tie. A hard pill to swallow, but the bovine populace doesn't care about facts. Bush's strategy, from the start of this debate, was simply to lie. That puts Kerry on the defensive. Yet he never once said, "That's a lie."

And I just can't help but feel sorry for poor Michael J. Fox, shaking uncontrollably during the debate, wondering when the stem cell question was ever going to be brought up. That poor fucker's gonna be dead in the next decade. "We want to promote life," says Bush. Well time to get crackin'.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:03 PM on October 13, 2004


Can anyone tell me the exact amount of time that Laura was shown during the last question and the amount of time that Teresa was shown?

Watch (tape, TiVo) for yourself--the replay is just now starting on C-SPAN. (and again at 1:30a.m. and 3:00a.m. Eastern)
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 8:03 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush Won.

No, Bush Won got his ass handed to him in 1992. This is 2004 and we're busy doing the same to Bush Too.
posted by George_Spiggott at 8:04 PM on October 13, 2004


iamck - linking to LGF to say Bush won is like linking to DU to say Kerry won...

No, its like asking mefites who won. It's entertaining, but representative of middle america? Hardly.
posted by justgary at 8:08 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry's worst of the three debates, Bush's best (by far).

Kerry still wins it. Facts (and demeanor) matter.
posted by rushmc at 8:08 PM on October 13, 2004


Sidhedevil ... if you're saying that the DNC cannot and did not exert strategic pressure behind the scenes, then I guess we have fundamentally different views of reality. It was certainly an open secret at our local Democratic headquarters that Dean was "trouble" and needed to be defeated. Where do you suppose they got that idea? The DNC wanted Kerry and lo and behold -- we got stuck with him. What are the odds?

For the record, I wasn't sold on Dean -- but it would have been nice to be allowed to vote instead of merely rubber-stamping the DNC's fait acompli. There job is to stand aside until after the primaries.
posted by RavinDave at 8:08 PM on October 13, 2004


CD, do you agree with RavinDave that Kerry attained the nomination illegitimately (he refuses to say how, of course)?

Do you think that Dean, if he had actually won the primaries, would have done better against Bush than Kerry is doing?

I agree that there are a lot of people typing love letters to Kerry on these debate threads, and one takes that with a grain of salt. However, it's a very close race, and much closer than anyone expected it to be before the primaries began.

And above all, RavinDave's constant fulminations that Kerry somehow stole the nomination bug the holy living crap out of me.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:10 PM on October 13, 2004


there = their *blush*
posted by RavinDave at 8:10 PM on October 13, 2004


Yet he refused to alknowledge that [No Child Left Behind] was underfunded

Because he truly doesn't believe it was.

And if you showed him the numbers, he still wouldn't believe it. Not because he's stupid (I'm not going to argue about that, really), but because in his rationale, it's not underfunded. If those pesky schools would just meet the standards, why, they'd get all the funding the deserve.

Those schools are underfunded because they don't deserve to be fully funded.

Never forget that this is all about morality for GWB, and that morality is pure Weberian Calvinism: Prosperity is proof of virtue. It is pure and simple Master-Morality stuff.

(Tina Fey: "Lodurr, lodurr.... we lost you at 'Weberian'.")
posted by lodurr at 8:10 PM on October 13, 2004


"breaking faith with the American people" was excellent by Kerry.
I call soundbite--that'll be repeated on the news.


And I will add Kerry's "I'm tired of politicians who preach family values but don't value families" when talking about raising the minimum wage.

And no FUCKIN way they were dressed the same. Kerry's tie: better color, better texture. Kerry's suit: much better fit, deeper color. Bush's suit looked terrible from the back- baggy and wrinkled. Since he can afford as good a suit as Kerry, I can only conclude he wanted to court the valuable Bowery Bum vote.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:12 PM on October 13, 2004


"stole" is such an ugly word. Let's say "bought".
posted by RavinDave at 8:13 PM on October 13, 2004


I listened to Howard Dean on Fresh Air tonight, and I came away with fresh conviction that he would have been spitted, roasted and served with mint relish in a general election.

I really liked Howard Dean, and barring the small fact of elections, I think he might have made a pretty good President. But there was no way in hell he'd survive the Rove treatment.
posted by lodurr at 8:14 PM on October 13, 2004


So, how did the debate go? I tell ya, the Cardinals sure are beating up on the Astros.
posted by rocketman at 8:15 PM on October 13, 2004


Whoops, sorry, Dave, our posts crossed in the ether.

A) Sounds like you have a legitimate beef with your state's Democratic party.

B) I agree that the candidate who is "anointed" by the national Committee is always going to have an advantage. (Cf. Bush v. McCain in 2000.)

However, your posts, until now, haven't said "I was impatient with the unfair advantage that Kerry had because of his influential supporters in the DNC"--rather, you've hinted darkly at skulduggery of some sort.

But I do agree with you that the "smoke-filled back rooms" anointing process is A Bad Thing. That is why I am not a member of any political party.

And, nonetheless, people are still free to vote for whoever they choose, especially early on in the process. Hell, my dad is a state Democratic Committee member and he voted for Dean at the convention!
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:16 PM on October 13, 2004


TGC - The question was:
"The New York Times reports that some Catholic archbishops are telling their church members that it would be a sin to vote for a candidate like you because you support a woman's right to choose an abortion and unlimited stem-cell research.
Neither Kerry nor Bush took up that last part of the question. That was SUCH A GIMME to Kerry. "Chris Reeves was a friend of mine... yada yada" Oh well...

On preview:
"CD, do you agree with RavinDave that Kerry attained the nomination illegitimately"

No, not at all. I don't even know how that's possible. Dean was a great rabble-rouser, he reminded me of Huey Long. Remember what happened to Huey Long? Well, in this case, the media assassinated Dean.

I think Dean would have served Bush his liver on a silver platter in the debates. Unfortunately, people (read: ignorant, stupid masses) equate ANGRY AT INJUSTICE with IRRATIONAL. Think Ross Perot. That's why Dean would never have stood a chance at election.

Personally, I can't understand why everyone isn't that angry. Maybe I need to take some of anti-depressants the TV tells me I need. Soma... soma... soma...
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:17 PM on October 13, 2004


It's 77% to 23% in Kerry's favor on MSNBC. Karen Hughes is on Charlie Rose. I'm having a difficult time not shouting the C*** word at her very loudly.
posted by Skygazer at 8:19 PM on October 13, 2004


Metafilter: Afghanistan bananastand.

my vote's in.
posted by NationalKato at 8:20 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry won? cool!
posted by mwhybark at 8:20 PM on October 13, 2004


Now see, RavinDave, I was with you there for a moment, but you lost me again with that "bought" business.

Kerry has a long and distinguished record as a senator and as a supporter of other Democrats. None of the other candidates in the primary race had any appreciable record of service to the Democratic Party as a whole, or to other Democratic candidates. Edwards was a neophyte; Dean was so independent as to be contrarian; Kucinich is in la-la-land; Al Sharpton isn't a professional party politician; and I forgot who else was running.

It is invariably the case that the Committee-anointed candidate is the person with whom the Committee feels most comfortable because they've carried a lot of water, over a lot of years, for the political party and its candidates. (The Bush anointing was an exception, of course, but I'd suggest that Poppy swayed the opinion there.)

I don't like that. It's why I'm so resolutely unaffiliated as a voter.

However, your degree of personal animus against Kerry seems completely unfounded. Who would you have preferred as a candidate for the Democratic nomination? Because it seemed to me that Kerry was a reasonable choice, given the people who expressed interest in the nomination.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:22 PM on October 13, 2004


George Bush, October 13, 2004:
Gosh, I just don't think I ever said I'm not worried about Osama bin Laden. It's kind of one of those exaggerations.
George Bush, March 13, 2002:
So I don't know where he is. Nor -- you know, I just don't spend that much time on him really, to be honest with you...And, you know, again, I don't know where he is...I'll repeat what I said: I truly am not that concerned about him.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:24 PM on October 13, 2004


CNN poll has the results about the same as the first debate (pundits agreeing as well). Last time the fifteen or so point victory turned into a thirty-eight point victory, so I think we'll see that by the end of this week 65% of people polled will think Kerry won this debate.

Neither Kerry nor Bush took up that last part of the question. That was SUCH A GIMME to Kerry. "Chris Reeves was a friend of mine... yada yada" Oh well...

Yeah, but it was disingenuous as hell to couch that question in a reference to voting for John Kerry being a sin. All the questions seemed slanted towards Bush by way of language choices, but I still think Kerry was the clear winner.
posted by The God Complex at 8:24 PM on October 13, 2004


I loved how Bush bragged about a million more students or whatever receiving Pell grants - and Kerry pointing out that's only because there are so many more families over the past four years that are poor enough to qualify. It's like Bush bragging how much the welfare rolls have grown during his administration.
I think Freedom is on the march . . .I think I hear the Armies of Compassion God promised were on the way . . .oops, no that's just ol' Karen Hughes in mah earpiece.
posted by sixdifferentways at 8:24 PM on October 13, 2004


My only complaint about the moderator was that he didn't allow a couple rebuttles that I thought were necessary.

I think Kerry beat Bush handily. Especially on the illegal immigrant, assault weapons ban, gay marriage, and the roe v wade question. Bush probably won on the social security question because he was vague enough on it to confuse people into thinking it was a good idea. If it was so good, why hasn't it passed either legislature?

I can't believe that I read every goddamn post.
posted by graventy at 8:25 PM on October 13, 2004


My take on Dean (and I am not a Democrat, so it might not matter, though I did vote in the Massachusetts Democratic Primary this year) is that I appreciated his righteous indignation, really I did. And I liked that his wife didn't change her name when she was married. And he seems to have done a good job as governor of Vermont.

However, his plans and platform didn't impress me. Vermont is a tiny state with a weak-governor system, so his record to date as a politician didn't impress me.

To me, Kerry was the best candidate in a field of less-than-impressive contenders. Which is why I supported him.

(However, I voted for Kucinich, because by the time the Massachusetts primary came around, Kerry was so far ahead that I felt I could use my vote to send a message of support to Kucinich, whom I admired for keeping his campaign going and trying to focus attention on the issues.)
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:27 PM on October 13, 2004


on the Congressional Black Caucus: Bush, White House snub Congressional Black Caucus (they requested 4 meetings, and as of 12/24/01 he hadn't yet met with them)
posted by amberglow at 8:29 PM on October 13, 2004


oops--make that requested a meeting 4 times...
posted by amberglow at 8:30 PM on October 13, 2004


And Ross Perot actually was irrational. Sorry, but he was as irrational as fuck. I had to cover those debates, and I remember banging my head against my desk trying to figure out what he was saying.

The fact that there is anyone in the United States who still thinks of Ross Perot as a meaningful alternative voice to the corrupt political discourse of the Big Two, instead of a plutocrat with time on his hands and a passionate admiration for the sound of his own voice, is one of the things that fills me with despair about the possibility that we will ever, EVER be able to get out of the "Tastes great!" "Less filling!" monoculture-posing-as-dialogue of our current political situation.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:31 PM on October 13, 2004


Why does Bush not get shit for having problems controlling his anger in all these debates. In the last one he shouted over Charlie Gibson, when he should have waited. In this debate he jumped in before getting the go ahead on several occasions, and one time he didn't even let Bob finish the question (the roe v. wade supreme court justices one), and instead diverted the question to "litmus test."

He doesn't follow the basic debate rules and can't seem to control his urges enough to have a civil debate and no one says shit.

I just don't see how he gets away with it.
posted by mathowie at 8:34 PM on October 13, 2004


I noticed Kerry mentioned his gut several times during the debate. I'm wondering if he is sorry he didn't say "Gut Test" rather than "Global Test"?

But I was pleased that he amended some of his formerly-cited statistics that were called inaccurate or distorted by the press. Such as saying "We have already spent 120 Billion (in Iraq) 200 Billion and more before we are done.

Bush, on the other hand, amended nothing. Still attacking "Global Test" still citing "voted against tax cuts 98 times) Blah, blah, blah.

Bush: Never, never admit mistakes!
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:34 PM on October 13, 2004


I think quonsar wins for funniest comment on this thread:

Do there need to be Hoovervilles on the White House lawn before these guys will admit that maybe the economy isn't so great?

they would hail it as an indicator of economic recovery, tout it as innovation in the housing sector, and award halliburton a $20 billion contract to provide infrastructure.

posted by Sidhedevil at 8:38 PM on October 13, 2004


PAYGO PAYGO PAYGO PAYGO
posted by angry modem at 8:41 PM on October 13, 2004


Gravy - yeah, I was wondering when he said the 120 billion whether it's going to be called flip-flopping or whether people will acknowledge that he's just clarifying what the 200 billion means.

Matt - Why? Because in a time of war, we must respect the preznit.
posted by soyjoy at 8:41 PM on October 13, 2004


Has anyone considered how appropriate the following movie titles are for these debates?

A NEW HOPE ... EMPIRE STRIKES BACK ... RETURN OF THE JEDI ... ?

The winner of the debates has to be Internets but tonight was great fun still. And the first one was just intoxicating with its promise and focused game.
posted by Peter H at 8:41 PM on October 13, 2004


I'm waiting for the DNS For ArmiesofCompassion to resolve.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:42 PM on October 13, 2004


42% to 41% in Kerry's favor again on ABC from a pool of 38% Repubs and 30% democrats. Good sign eh?? eh?? Hmm?? (knock on wood).

In other news the Red Sox lost 3 - 1.
posted by Skygazer at 8:43 PM on October 13, 2004



on the Congressional Black Caucus: Bush, White House snub Congressional Black Caucus (they requested 4 meetings, and as of 12/24/01 he hadn't yet met with them)


He did meet with them, though. But he didn't meet with the NAACP.
posted by The God Complex at 8:43 PM on October 13, 2004


And speaking of Bowery Bums...Jon Stewart is off all week, da lazy bum! Guess I'll toddle off to bed and watch the Al Franken show.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:44 PM on October 13, 2004


He doesn't follow the basic debate rules and can't seem to control his urges enough to have a civil debate and no one says shit. mathowie.

Sums up all the Repubs/Tories to me.
posted by dash_slot- at 8:45 PM on October 13, 2004


Check out the front page of Freep--they're trying to rally people to game the polls for Kerry.

I'm not exactly sure what the strategory for that is, though; the people who are doing the exhorting have a rather poor grasp of syntax.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:46 PM on October 13, 2004


my vote goes to this one:

Bush thinks if he dresses like Kerry people will get confused and vote for him.
posted by kirkaracha at 7:20 PM PST on October 13

posted by amberglow at 8:46 PM on October 13, 2004


I just don't see how he gets away with it.

The fact that none of the moderators had the balls to actually enforce the rules?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 8:47 PM on October 13, 2004


meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, the Republicans lose again: Describing the petitions as "rife with forgeries," Commonwealth Court President Judge James Gardner Colins said that fewer than 19,000 of the more than 51,000 signatures that Nader's supporters submitted were valid. Nader needed at least 25,697 to be listed on the ballot as an independent candidate.

"I am compelled to emphasize that this signature-gathering process was the most deceitful and fraudulent exercise ever perpetrated upon this court," Colins said in a 15-page ruling that followed a two-week review in multiple courtrooms across the state.

posted by amberglow at 8:51 PM on October 13, 2004


Here's the thing. The october surprise is that the Bush camp is tired and doesn't really want to win. The approval ratings are in the toilet and have been for months. No incumbent gets reelected with those kind of numbers. They know it's almost over and they're all looking forward to a little rest.

And no disrespect to those who lost their lives, but I sense that most of the country is ready to move on from the 9/11 & terror alert mindset. Bush & co. have used so many of those images and feelings to bolster their cause, but it's beginning to make them look more like a piece of the past than part of a vibrant future.

I wish Kerry had pushed the appointment issues a little harder. The Judicial appointments were touched upon, but I think Kerry could have pressed Bush about what he meant when he said some of his appointments were "mistakes" in debate number two. Even folks who like Bush for his folksy ways think John Ashcroft is the boogeyman. I don't think Rumsfeld or Rice are very well liked either.
posted by whatnot at 8:51 PM on October 13, 2004


42% to 41% in Kerry's favor again on ABC from a pool of 38% Repubs and 30% democrats.

That as bad as that gallup poll a month ago. I don't know how any poll can justify using more Republicans than Democrats when history suggests that Democrats turn out in larger numbers (and at worse tied).
posted by The God Complex at 8:52 PM on October 13, 2004


Well, shit, Ifill couldn't even remember the rules, let alone enforce them.

Bush is so lucky to have gotten out of gradeschool before No Child Left Behind, with its demands for reading rightin and rithmatic (as well as thought procession and cognition)

Hey, hold on there, cowboy. Bush went to expensive private schools, which are allowed to leave as many Children Behind as they want to, because his parents inherited buttloads of money^H^H^H I mean, worked hard to fulfill the American dream.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:53 PM on October 13, 2004


Pago Pago?
posted by melissa may at 8:55 PM on October 13, 2004


A-glow, here's what pisses me off about the story you linked to: every time some state throws out fake Nader signatures, the story says "The Democratic Party is trying to keep Nader off the ballot" as though enforcing actual election laws and not allowing "Fred Flintstone" signatures to count is some piece of Democratic skulduggery.

WTF?
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:56 PM on October 13, 2004


>I just don't see how he gets away with it.

Err, that's his style. He's been taught to do that shit to be "manly," "tough," and "in-charge." To conservatives interruptions and acting tough are a type of argument.

Gibson tried to stop him in debate two, but to no avail. What the boy king wants, he gets. Except this election.
posted by skallas at 8:56 PM on October 13, 2004


we can only hope, whatnot.
posted by amberglow at 8:57 PM on October 13, 2004


The capital of American Samoa is pronounced "Pango-Pango" for reasons that I'm sure make sense to people who have expertise in the Roman-letter orthography of Polynesian languages.

However, what does this have to do with the recently-concluded pissing match?
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:58 PM on October 13, 2004


Wow, MSNBC has Kerry at 73% over Bush right now! That's pretty impressive, even if the poll is being gamed by the Dems.

Favorite moments?
"I'm tired of politicians who preach family values but don't value families" and Bush "broke faith with the American people when he took this nation to war".

Twenty more days, twenty more days until it ends.
posted by fenriq at 8:59 PM on October 13, 2004


A-glow, here's what pisses me off about the story you linked to: every time some state throws out fake Nader signatures, the story says "The Democratic Party is trying to keep Nader off the ballot" as though enforcing actual election laws and not allowing "Fred Flintstone" signatures to count is some piece of Democratic skulduggery.

WTF?

that's just our liberal media for ya. Meanwhile, i've yet to see anything that tops the Republican shit i posted about yesterday in Nevada, and Oregon, and all over. And--putting Nader on the ballot everywhere has been a Republican effort--something they're not entirely succeeding at.
posted by amberglow at 9:00 PM on October 13, 2004


Fenriq, apparently the poll is being gamed for Kerry by the freepers as well.

I honestly can't figure out why they're doing that, though, because the people who are talking about it are so profoundly illiterate that I can't understand what they are saying. I'm not kidding. I spent some time reading through posts over there trying to figure out what their goals were, and I gave up.

And I agree that "family values/doesn't value families" is a nice chiasmus.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:02 PM on October 13, 2004


Maybe some Democrat who didn't run this time is your dream candidate. But they didn't think they could beat Bush. Kerry thought he could, and Kerry ran.

There were other Democrats, going into the primaries, that I thought I'd like better as a nominee than Kerry (and none of the contenders were my dream candidate). But Kerry beat Dean. He beat Kucinich. He beat all those guys.

I was anybody-but-Bush for a long, long time. But Kerry's performance in the debates has won me over. I l compared the two at the first debate, looked at Kerry, and said "That's my president."

I think the media jacked Dean with their slanted portrayal of his "I have a scream" speech. I still think he could have been portrayed as one-dimensional and would have lostto Bush. That said, though, he shaped the race by focusing on Iraq and showing the Democrats that Bush was vulnerable there.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:04 PM on October 13, 2004


Oh, no, this is pay-go.

Whoa.
posted by melissa may at 9:05 PM on October 13, 2004


The thing with Dean, too, is that he never played ball with the Democratic National Committee until he wanted to run for President. Before that, he was all "I'm not going to stump for your Democratic candidates--let the people of Vermont make up their own minds" whenever they came knocking.

Now, I actually admire that. And, in the idiosyncratic political landscape of Vermont (with its one Democratic Senator, one Independent Senator, and one Independent Congresscritter) it makes fine sense.


But when it came time for the various candidates to call in their chips with the smoke-filled rooms crowd, Dean just plain didn't have any. So how could he, or anyone else, be surprised when those folks threw their weight behind someone who was more of a team player?

And though I think this, like the ways in which McCain's primary campaign was undermined by the RNC in 2000--which was much more blatant than the DNC's meddling, such as it was, in 2004--is a bad thing, I think that directing the anger at Kerry personally and as a candidate, rather than at the system, is counterproductive.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:11 PM on October 13, 2004


so i ventured into enemy territory for a minute, looking at LGF from iamck's link... holy shit. matt, please delete that link before someone else clicks it to see what they're saying. continue locking out LGF links from mefi. nobody needs to see that.

seriously, as much as mefi leans left, i'm thankful for those of you who still speak up on the other side. sure it gets into a shouting match now and then, but we at least can disagree with each other here and not have it always turn into a clusterfuck. we can have at least one person per thread with an opposing opinion and not have it explode into a hate-fest.

i want this election to happen now. i'm sick of the suspense and tired of being driven into an unexplainable rage every time i see a car with a W bumper sticker or a house with a bush-cheney sign out front.

and i want the campaign finance reform kerry's been promising to get in gear, ASAP, before this shit gets any worse - or we'll have this LGF-style "hate the other team forever" bullshit in the streets, not just on the internets.
posted by caution live frogs at 9:16 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry's got 61% to 38% over at the ol liberal Fox site
posted by edgeways at 9:22 PM on October 13, 2004


Bush looked more silly waiting for laughs to his "jokes" in this debate than he did in Round 2.

I have to admit I enjoyed the "Kerry Eats Babies" sign someone held up behind some of the talking heads. Kerry comes in #3, tops, among the candidates in baby-eating prowess.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:27 PM on October 13, 2004


I have to say, I'm staggered at the general response. I can't stand Dubya and I genuinely admire Kerry -- but I though JFK seemed tired and droney, unlikable and wonky. I thought Bush was sharp, likeable, focused -- I thought it was exactly the outcome I'd dreaded from all of these.

Look, on domestic issues Kerry just doesn't know how to put together a compelling narrative. He should have been talking about CEOs and Enron and the environment and overtime pay -- connecting the dots. And boy, did he look bad -- bags under his eyes and all.

Bush, to me, had his cowboy/Forrest Gump charm working at full. I don't see where Kerry goes from here. But I'm thrilled that no one else sees this.
posted by argybarg at 9:28 PM on October 13, 2004


But I'm thrilled that no one else sees this.

You mean no one HERE sees this. Look around the net, check sites out that lean way right, compare it with places that lean way left (here for example).

It's almost like reading the same comments, just with different winners. The truth, normally, is somewhere in the middle. Take away the left and right extreme and you'll get a better reading.
posted by justgary at 9:33 PM on October 13, 2004



It's almost like reading the same comments, just with different winners. The truth, normally, is somewhere in the middle. Take away the left and right extreme and you'll get a better reading.


Logical fallacy. Sorry. Facts and logic generally dictate the truth. Polls so far show Kerry winning. I think that's a pretty sound argument for the response by the Metafilter crowd. Clearly we lean left (in American terms), but the people here are also pretty smart, too, and know what independent voters seem to look for.
posted by The God Complex at 9:39 PM on October 13, 2004


Make that all the polls, except for those found on far right sites--even Fox, and all the actual "official" polls, including those altered by weighting Repubs more.
posted by amberglow at 9:44 PM on October 13, 2004


Again, that's the inherent problem with static-laden debate topics. Bush can say "we put a gazillion pengos into wetland reclamation over 3 quarters of a delayed fiscal cycle" and our eyes glaze over. We have no way to evaluate it and it's doubtful Kerry has those figures at his finger tips ... so he ignores it and focuses on the points he wants to punctuate. As long as it sounds plausible -- Bush scores. Doesn't matter if FactCheck debunks it three days later.

Shout out to Sidhedevil for a helluva nice last message.
posted by RavinDave at 9:44 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry was more courageous than Clinton.

Talk about damning with faint praise.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 9:57 PM on October 13, 2004


Logical fallacy.

Not at all. A left leaning site will concentrate on finding bush caught in lies, a right leaning site kerry. The truth usually is in the middle in my opinion, believe otherwise and we'll just agree to disagree. The truth is blurred through the eyes we view them through. I mean, come on, he seems like a nice guy and I don't mean this in an attacking way, but for example, do you areally think amberglow has the capiacity to view the election and debates in a balanced way at all? And I'm just using him as an example because he's the most active leftist pundit we have on mefi,.

If you had no idea what the national polls looked like right now and simply read metafilter, you'd think this was a cakewalk, that the states weren't basically split down the mddle, which they are. I have a feeling it has a lot to do with the majority of mefites being from left leaning metropolitan areas. Regardless, it's not representative of america no more than a right leaning forum.

but the people here are also pretty smart, too

Ha. Are you joking? Do you really think metafilter has a lock on 'smart' people? Scary statement.

and know what independent voters seem to look for.

I'll differ with you on that one, and seeing how its such an unprovable rhetorical statement, who knows who's right.
posted by justgary at 9:58 PM on October 13, 2004


I'm a little disappointed. Kerry could have destroyed Bush, and I think he knew it, and decided to stay on the high road. The fact is, Bush has barely been able to keep it together for these debates, and Kerry could have pushed him over the edge any time he wanted to. I'm impressed with him that he didn't, but still wish he found an excuse to say something like:
The first President Bush, the father of the current president, is certainly not someone I always saw eye to eye with, in fact we disagreed on many things. But I always respected him as a man.
That's all it would have taken; the remainder being implied rather than said. Shrubby wouldn't have fallen to pieces, but trying to choke that one down, turning it over and over in his mind trying to discern if he really meant what it sounded like, would have broken his precarious concentration, turned him red in the face and deservedly useless for the rest of the debate.

Like I said, I think Kerry knew that he could do something like this, and I admire him for not doing it. But now may not be the time to play that much nicer than your opponent.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:05 PM on October 13, 2004


Hey, don't knock the LGF, freep, token con mefites crowd. Dont you know they are all selfless intellectuals of the highest order? Perhaps this cartoon will help:


posted by skallas at 10:07 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry could have destroyed Bush, and I think he knew it, and decided to stay on the high road. The fact is, Bush has barely been able to keep it together for these debates, and Kerry could have pushed him over the edge any time he wanted to.

Do you really believe that? He knew he could destroy bush but refrained and stayed on the high road? Wow.
posted by justgary at 10:10 PM on October 13, 2004


election season
candidates pound on their chests
ex ag ger a tions
posted by Tenuki at 10:12 PM on October 13, 2004


Can't believe I just watched the whole debate, then came here and read all these comments and then started to read all the comments at LGF, and I'm not even an American! I think Bush lifted his game a lot in this debate and Kerry put in his worst performance but still beat Bush overall. Kerry perhaps got a bit laden down with all those facts and figures, but he was nonetheless convincing. Basically, I could see Kerry's performance convincing a wavering conservative to switch sides, but I couldn't see Bush doing the reverse.
posted by Onanist at 10:12 PM on October 13, 2004


I just don't see how he gets away with it.

Because everyone who cares about "rules" is already against Bush.
posted by rushmc at 10:15 PM on October 13, 2004


justgary, I'm with you. If Kerry could have clobbered Bush in this debate, he would have. Had he followed George_Spiggott's advice, he would have come across to the swing voter as a smug bastard who punches below the belt. It would have been as bad as calling his mother a whore.

Face it, Kerry bonked. Domestic issues were supposed to be his strong suit, and instead he looked fatigued and flustered. All the style points tonight went to Bush.

Kerry even dropped the gimme question. "My mother's last three words to me were 'integrity, integrity, integrity.'" Oh, c'mon. Bush got it right, "listen to her!"

Mommies all over Ohio laughed and blushed. They felt special. They looked over at their balding husbands and smiled. "You know," they thought to themselves, "My husband is a lot like W. But that Kerry reminds me of a used car salesman."

Sigh. It was his to lose, and he lost it. It's the damn curse of the Bambino!
posted by terceiro at 10:25 PM on October 13, 2004


justgary, I'm with you. If Kerry could have clobbered Bush in this debate, he would have.

And I meant nothing against kerry. It's the nature of politics. Agree with one side or the other, but to believe one is going to take the "high road" is naive. It's simply not the nature of politics.

Show me a politician who doesn't go for the throat and I'll show you (more often than not) the election loser.
posted by justgary at 10:30 PM on October 13, 2004


A left leaning site will concentrate on finding bush caught in lies, a right leaning site kerry. The truth usually is in the middle

The truth lies between the two extremes, I'll agree. But it's a fallacy to assume it lies in the middle of the two extremes. (New York lies between Boston and Miami, but is not in the middle of Boston and Miami.)

I want the campaign finance reform kerry's been promising to get in gear, ASAP, before this shit gets any worse

Because the first campaign finance reform didn't go far enough in supressing speech?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 10:35 PM on October 13, 2004


he would have come across to the swing voter as a smug bastard who punches below the belt.

That may very well be the real reason it wasn't tried, but in truth it needn't have been as blatant as what I suggested, that was just off the top of my head. Bush is barely in control of himself at the best of times, and these are not his best times. If the goal is turn him into a stammering idiot for the remainder of an hour or so, it's not hard -- it's all he can do to be anything else for brief, well-coached spurts. It wouldn't have been difficult to craft an innocent-seeming verbal dart, buried in some appropriate topic, that would have done the job but not given the pundits and second guessers much to work with. And I've no doubt at all that the Kerry team has thought this through already. True, they may not have refrained out of nobility, but I don't think that were their positions reversed the Bushies would have refrained at all.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:44 PM on October 13, 2004


A CNN/USA Today/Gallup snap poll taken immediately after the presidential debate found that respondents gave a significant edge to Kerry over Bush, 52 percent to 39 percent.

'Course, debating Bush is like debating a mud post....similar to debating most conservatives.

~wink~
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 10:53 PM on October 13, 2004


Kerry is poised to be pummeled by another Swift Boat ad this next week. Here's a great chance for him to show why he should be a leader. He knows it's coming. He has plenty of time to deal with it and blunt the attack. A nice counterpunch might be a commercial with Bush ignoring Bin Laden contrasted to his debate lie tonight. Will he do it? I'm not optimistic.

***PUT BUSH ON THE DEFENSIVE ABOUT A [b]CURRENT[/b] ISSUE***
posted by RavinDave at 10:57 PM on October 13, 2004


My impressions are this:

-- Kerry flat out won this debate on both style and substance. Sure they both got in some zingers but I counted up a few more for Kerry than I did for Bush.

-- Bush had a better performance than in debate 1 but not quite as good as he had in debate 2. He seemed tired, petulant and defensive most of the time.

-- Bush almost had a spit take!

-- Kerry made a very obvious play to the middle (as he has most of the campaign). Bush tried to paint him into a "Liberal" label without much success.

-- Kerry had more human moments tonight than in any other debate: Faith, Religion, Family.

-- Who won the debate? Well who looked more like they knew what they were doing? Kerry again looked far more presidential than Bush...and what was with all the pulpit slapping from Bush?

--Tomorrow's news will be his quote about Osama Bin Laden in the past...This is the killer just like the "Need Wood" quote from debate 2.
posted by aaronscool at 11:02 PM on October 13, 2004


I gotta admit, I'm with justgary a bit here: I thought Kerry was kind of droney and repeated the same phrases for the third time, while bush was doing that goofy grin and "aw shucks" attitude that made him seem much more human. Bush definitely scored points when he made a crack about Kerry having a litany of complaints instead of a plan.

During one of the "how big is your cock for God" questions, after Bush talked about how much his faith meant, I did a Kerry impression during his rebuttal where I said miracles were down 38% during Bush's administration to big laughs. If I can mock Kerry's attack of Bush's record and get laughs, I think Kerry was going on a bit long about this and that being so awful. Kerry seemed like a big complainer.

I still think Bush ignores the debate rules and doesn't seem presidential when he does it. It just seems uncivil, and these guys should be bigger than that.
posted by mathowie at 11:06 PM on October 13, 2004


amberglow: I think Bush met with the full Congressional Black Caucus over Haiti earlier this year. So that's what, a little over three years it took him?
posted by allaboutgeorge at 11:07 PM on October 13, 2004


Tomorrow's news will be his quote about Osama Bin Laden in the past

Even Fox News was playing Bush's 3/13/02 clip in the post-debate commentary tonight. Guess they've joined the librul media.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 11:46 PM on October 13, 2004


justgary, I'm with you. If Kerry could have clobbered Bush in this debate, he would have.

And I meant nothing against kerry. It's the nature of politics. Agree with one side or the other, but to believe one is going to take the "high road" is naive. It's simply not the nature of politics.


I disagree. While it's true we see it far too rarely, it seems obvious to me that part of Kerry's strategy was *not* to go on an all-out attack. He was poised, calm, classy . . . and just downright Presidential. I think anyone watching with open eyes could just see that. I don't think it's in him to out-slime the GOP, and he knows he couldn't even if he tried. The strategy is instead to present a reasoned and tactful face that emphasises the differences in the candidates. He even complimented Bush on his post 9-11 speech and in bringing the country together then. Some people may hate JK, some may think he's boring, but he just has an air of intelligence and class and genuineness that really seems to be lacking in Bush.
You have to remember, these debates are not to win the popular opinion. They're to win over the tiny minority of undecided voters. Most experts I've read say the major factor in winning over undecideds at this point (for Kerry) is showing who he is as a person and explaining what he plans to do. Most of us were looking for fireworks and entertainment, not this snoozy wonkfest - but it may very well work to achieve the narrow goal of winning those undecideds.
posted by sixdifferentways at 12:30 AM on October 14, 2004


ex ag ger a tions
like elephants in corners
who will check the facts?
posted by bashos_frog at 1:20 AM on October 14, 2004


I disagree. While it's true we see it far too rarely, it seems obvious to me that part of Kerry's strategy was *not* to go on an all-out attack.

I agree that it may have been part of his "strategy". He may realize that by attacking bush and tearing him down he could make voters feel sorry for bush and he could actually lose votes (americans likes the underdog). But in no way do I think he held back because he's above it all . Sure, I'm cynical. I don't think there's all that much difference in the parties. They're both out of touch and attached to special interests. I also believe if it meant victory there's nothing either one wouldn't do to grab it. I don't see anything in kerry's past that leads one to believe he's any different than any other professional politician, and I think those looking for such a distinction are grasping for straws. (dean and perot are exceptions in my mind, no matter what you think of them, and they're pretty much proof being different tends not to work in the end.)

Most of us were looking for fireworks and entertainment, not this snoozy wonkfest - but it may very well work to achieve the narrow goal of winning those undecideds.

Maybe, but gore had the market cornered on snooze and he lost (yes, I know he "won"), but it was a race most thought his to lose, and basically, he did.

Course, debating Bush is like debating a mud post....similar to debating most conservatives.


If Kerry ranks only 13 points higher than a mud post, we're in trouble no matter who wins.

~wink~

miracles were down 38%


Now that's funny, sounds like an onion headline.
posted by justgary at 1:53 AM on October 14, 2004


Look, on domestic issues Kerry just doesn't know how to put together a compelling narrative. He should have been talking about CEOs and Enron and the environment and overtime pay -- connecting the dots. And boy, did he look bad -- bags under his eyes and all.

YES. YES fucking YES. I kept yelling at the TV during Kerry's parts of the debates, but it didn't seem to help.

To go through the list of "should have's":Shit, I could go on through the entire debate. The point is, the only reason this debate is even close is because Kerry completely failed to drop the hammer on Bush, and it's a damned shame because this is the last most people are going to see of him before they go to the ballot box. Oh, except for those TV stations in the Sinclair unbrella, who are going to get a fine dose of Swift Boat shoved down their throats.

He most decidedly did not win this one, even if he didn't lose it.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 2:17 AM on October 14, 2004


And no, I didn't proofread that before I posted it. Sorry.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 2:38 AM on October 14, 2004


justgary: Not at all. A left leaning site will concentrate on finding bush caught in lies, a right leaning site kerry. The truth usually is in the middle in my opinion, believe otherwise and we'll just agree to disagree.

Well, the fallacy there (excluding the qualifier "usually") is that there are enough lies on both sides to balance. What if there aren't? As far as I've been able to see for the last six years (four of his presidency plus two of his previous campaign), and if you're looking to "average lies", then the midline skews pretty heavily toward Kerry.

FWIW, "averaging lies" probably isn't a very good total strategy for arriving at the judgement of a candidate's merit. But it does go a long way.
posted by lodurr at 4:13 AM on October 14, 2004


You guys obviously haven't seen all the news reports about how people are yearning for a discussion of facts and the problems facing us domestically, not a continuing slimefest. We have a president who has either ignored domestic issues or made things worse--people know that already--all polls, even gallupish Republican-weighted ones, show that a majority of people think we're on the wrong track. If people already think that, Kerry only needs to remind them, not clobber Bush with it, and focus far more on what he would do as president that's different and better than what Bush has done. He's certainly achieving that, and it's showing in the results of each of these debates, and in the momentum Kerry has now. Plus, going into full-on attack mode turns off undecideds and voters looking at this race for the first time. It's a fine line Kerry's walking, and he's suceeding.
posted by amberglow at 4:46 AM on October 14, 2004


I just wonder, watching the post-debate analysis, if the pundits don't have a vested interest in keeping the race a close one. It just seems to me that Kerry was so far ahead in all three debates in both style and substance. He has a presidential quality, unlike Bush, who stands there with that smug grin on his face regardless of the gravity of what's being said. It just comes off as if Bush doesn't really understand what's going on around him; either that, or he understands and just doesn't care.

Why aren't the pundits and spinmeisters pointing this out?
posted by MegoSteve at 6:30 AM on October 14, 2004


Yes, Kerry wasn't trying to please hardcore Democrats and/or people who lean left. I heard someone tell me he should've gone after Bush like Harry Truman would have. Well, Truman was president during a time when radio was dominant, and cool and collected equals "presidential" on television. Independent leaners are tired of anger. Non-hardcore types are tired of division as well - and Kerry's saying he wouldn't reject a Republican idea just becuase it was Republican surely had to play well with millions of viewers.

It's an odd thing: People get way more upset about sports and will tolerate as much but, as one wag told me, that only means they have their priorities straight. Americans: They're all for their leaders bombing the shit of people they don't know, mostly, but they want their campaigns to be civil.
posted by raysmj at 6:36 AM on October 14, 2004


nearly all the pro-Bush callers are trying to push the "Bush is a better Christian than Kerry"

My SO tells me that many people on talk radio last night were saying that Kerry is a bad Catholic for not being adamently against abortion. They couldn't seem to understand his position that while he personally doesn't believe in abortion, he does not want to force his beliefs on others.

I think this is a big problem. We have religious Americans who don't think it is wrong for people in power to force their religious beliefs on others-- in fact they (religious Americans) think it is wrong not to do so.

MediaMatters.Org has a good run down on the whole Stolen Honor/Sinclair Broadcast Bru ha ha and what you personally can do about it.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:55 AM on October 14, 2004


"I love the fact that people pray for me all around the country. Somebody asked me one time, "How do you know?", I said, "I just feel it.""

Do you feel what I'M wishing for you Bush? Feel that? Does it make your ring tingle?
posted by Pretty_Generic at 7:47 AM on October 14, 2004


The truth lies between the two extremes, I'll agree. But it's a fallacy to assume it lies in the middle of the two extremes.

Well said.

Because the first campaign finance reform didn't go far enough in supressing speech?

Money != speech. The 1st Amendment does not guarantee the right to wield undue and unequal influence via one's personal wealth.

We have religious Americans who don't think it is wrong for people in power to force their religious beliefs on others-- in fact they (religious Americans) think it is wrong not to do so.

This is NEWS to you?!? I'm very surprised that Kerry is even bothering to appeal to the religious population who puts their Constitutional beliefs over their Biblical ones--this is a rapidly shrinking demographic, making it a risky strategy.
posted by rushmc at 8:19 AM on October 14, 2004


Even though it was a pre-ordained softball that Bush and Kerry both supposedly handled with the perfect amount of folksiness and self-effacement, that lame last question about "strong women" still shows us a lot about the character of the two men.

Strip away the henpeckery gags and there are two central anecdotes. Kerry's was about his dying mother saying "integrity, integrity, integrity." Bush's was about his brother introducing him to Laura and his "love at first sight."

In other words, Kerry's answer to the question "what have you learned from the strong women in your life" was straightforward: Integrity. Bush not only completely avoided answering the question (other than the cutesy joke answers) but chose to tell a story of how once again his family connections had helped him get a prize that he's happy with - and he thinks this makes him just like the average Joe. This is an allegory for the whole debate, and, I think, the general difference between these two men.
posted by soyjoy at 8:20 AM on October 14, 2004


Next day thoughts.

I do think Kerry looked tired and didn't have the same peppy little "can-do" energy that Bush was trying hard to carry.

I liked Bush saying Laura told him not to slouch or scowl.

I thought Kerry left alot of opportunities in his quiver but thaty may have been on purpose. Allowing Bush to continually attack might have been part of Kerry's strategy.

Why Kerry didn't talk about stem cell research is beyond me, the only thing I can think of is that he didn't want to appear like a death hawk by exploiting the death of Chris Reeve. Which, if true, speaks volumes about the man's character.
posted by fenriq at 8:38 AM on October 14, 2004


My SO tells me that many people on talk radio last night were saying that Kerry is a bad Catholic for not being adamently against abortion. They couldn't seem to understand his position that while he personally doesn't believe in abortion, he does not want to force his beliefs on others.

I think this is a big problem. We have religious Americans who don't think it is wrong for people in power to force their religious beliefs on others-- in fact they (religious Americans) think it is wrong not to do so.


But look at it from their side--they believe that a fetus is human, and thus abortion is murder. "Abortion is murder" is not just a clever slogan for the pro-life crowd, it's a deeply held belief. Kerry's position doesn't sound so defensible if you phrase it as, "I believe is abortion is murder, but I don't believe in protecting people from murder."

Money != speech. The 1st Amendment does not guarantee the right to wield undue and unequal influence via one's personal wealth.

Sadly, the Supreme Court agrees with you. I disagree with both you and the Supreme Court. (I've been accused of being a "first-amendment absolutist." I consider the label a badge of honor.)

"Speech is protected; expending money on speech is not protected" seems like a very dangerous slippery slope to me. Under that interpretation, a law which prohibited someone from, say, spending $20 a year for a website which supports marijuana legalization would be entirely Constitutional.

If spending money on speech is not protected, then very very little speech which can actually make a difference is de facto protected. Did you drive a car to get to this anti-war rally? Did you spend money for the gas to power the car? That's an expenditure of money for speech, and can be prohibited.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 8:38 AM on October 14, 2004


After sleeping on it, and reading 300+ comments, my vote for winner goes to Donald Westlake, with Kerry a close second.
posted by cairnish at 8:39 AM on October 14, 2004


I wonder if Bush lost any security moms by referring to his daughters -- both out of their teens -- as his "little girls."
posted by callmejay at 8:41 AM on October 14, 2004


Why Kerry didn't talk about stem cell research is beyond me, the only thing I can think of is that he didn't want to appear like a death hawk by exploiting the death of Chris Reeve.

I doubt that, because with Michael J. Fox in the audience, it gave him the perfect example to use without ever mentioning Reeve, if he had wanted to.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:37 AM on October 14, 2004


But, DA, the US government already keeps us from having unrestrained free speech on broadcast television. As a society, we have accepted that I can't say "cunt" to describe my favorite body part on broadcast television; given that, a ruling that Sinclair Broadcasting can't show what is essentially a campaign ad in prime time doesn't seem inconsistent.

I'm all for a broadcast television environment in which people can say "cunt" AND show partisan documentaries. But those who favor censorship of one thing should realize that they've created an environment in which other things can be censured with equal integrity.
posted by Sidhedevil at 10:32 AM on October 14, 2004


But, DA, the US government already keeps us from having unrestrained free speech on broadcast television. As a society, we have accepted that I can't say "cunt" to describe my favorite body part on broadcast television;

Given my previous post, it will probably not surprise you to learn that this is another case where I do not see eye-to-eye with the Supreme Court, nor with "society."

But those who favor censorship of one thing should realize that they've created an environment in which other things can be censured with equal integrity.

Hear hear. I just wish Democrats who promote "campaign finance reform" because they don't like some Republican attack ads would realize that.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 10:44 AM on October 14, 2004


When Kerry came out on stage I was worried. I agree with those above who say He looked tired. Debating a mendacious, manipulative, failure of a President seriously and with thoughtful respect must be exhausting. It shows tremendous vision and strength on Kerry's part.

As for his restraint in nailing Bush with stuff like stem cell, Halliburton and the like. There's still time for that. It does make me think that this was real effort to tone down the attack mode of the last 2 debates. My gut wishes kerry had laid Bush to a blabbering redfaced sputtering waste, but my brain says this was the smart move. He (Kerry) leaves the country with an image of a measured, effective open minded leader, compassionate, determined and knowledgeable. Almost journeyman like in his approach. thoughtful and hard working. That can't be bad. He's already been effective in making his opinions known in the other debates. The point here in this final major appearance in front of the nation was to show a FULL picture and a comprehensive strategy. Something that puts him in sharp contrast to the Administrations stubborn fragmented failing approach (no exit strategy in Iraq, No Child Left Behind w/o proper funding). I think that's what the undecided want. Someone who is just as methodical and thoughtful as they are. What I saw up there was a Kerry who has been injected with Clinton's uncanny and devastatingly effective ability to not let the right outflank him on economic/foreign affairs issues and appropriate religion/faith as solely the jurisdiction of the GOP. When Kerry said "We are all God's children" and "Faith without works is dead" as well as "I'm tired of politicians who talk about family values without valuing families" he did some major major damage to that effort, as I think most folks don't necessarily need a president to be a born again zealot kowtowing to the bible belt, but they DO (sad as it is and against the very foundations of the constitution) want to see or feel a resonance with judeo-christian values.

Here's the other thing. Believe it or not, and it makes me nauseous to think about it, if Kerry continues his momentum in the polls this campaign is about to get dirtier and nastier. I would put hard cash money (20 bucks anyone?) down on that. The RNC/Rove machine is about to go into hyper smear mode, not to mention all sorts of nasty shi*t like what's happened in Nevada and Ohio (with the 80 lb paper nonsense), not to mention what further damage is going to be wrought on the republic if this is another squeaker. The DNC is going to come back hard and nasty as well. And they should. Like I said people can see that Kerry raised the tone of the race to a more decent, respectful place in the final debate. If things have to get F-ugly, well then he has every right to defend himself and his race for the presidency any way he see fit.
posted by Skygazer at 11:47 AM on October 14, 2004


with Michael J. Fox in the audience, it gave him the perfect example to use without ever mentioning Reeve, if he had wanted to.

Except that they were expressly prohibited from referring to people in the audience. Yes, I know they both essentially "broke" that rule by referring to their wives, but that was part of the question, while dragging Michael J. Fox in was exactly the kind of grandstanding cliche the rule was apparently put in place to prohibit.
posted by soyjoy at 12:45 PM on October 14, 2004


I hadn't seen the first two debates, so my impressons are fresh. And fly, word up.

i boil it down like this:
it seemed like one guy was trying to get across information, and one guy was trying to keep from giving out information. He seemed weaselly, deceitful, Nixonesque. (i know that's a compliment to some, but, god, it's not meant that way.) Especially when he refused to answer a direct question when it was asked for a second time. ("Will you overturn Roe v. Wade?" " What you're asking is will I hand-pick judges, and the answer is no.""dammit, i asked will you overturn Roe v. Wade?" ) at least Kerry took the opportunity to point this out.

i took a public speaking class this last quarter, and Bush looked just like a guy trying to ad-lib his way through a three-page speech with one page of notes. Believe me.

i wasn't impressed by Kerry, but he's on a whole different level than the incumbent. He can speak.

What really bugged me was in all the network news post-debate commentary, people were falling all over themselves to say that Bush had improved. That doesn't make it any sort of win. We'll give him a shiny gold star for effort. But let's hire the qualified guy.
posted by Miles Long at 4:15 PM on October 14, 2004


That's an expenditure of money for speech, and can be prohibited.

The issue/problem is not about spending money to carry speech to an audience, it's about not garnering a disproportionate voice that affords one an unfair advantage over someone with the same Constitutional rights but less cash. Not everyone can afford an old-style printing press, but those who can shouldn't be permitted to use them to gain undue influence over Congress, for example. IMO this reasoning should definitely be applied a lot more than it is, not less: to the television networks, for example. Censorship can be implemented just as effectively by giving some groups/individuals too much voice as by giving others too little (because the end result is very similar).
posted by rushmc at 4:23 PM on October 14, 2004


The issue/problem is not about spending money to carry speech to an audience, it's about not garnering a disproportionate voice that affords one an unfair advantage over someone with the same Constitutional rights but less cash. Not everyone can afford an old-style printing press, but those who can shouldn't be permitted to use them to gain undue influence over Congress, for example.

And how does one determine who is "gaining undue influence?" Before you answer, pause and reflect that both houses of Congress are currently controlled by Republicans.

Censorship can be implemented just as effectively by giving some groups/individuals too much voice as by giving others too little

So if there are 500 liberal bloggers who have 1000 or more readers a month, and 200 conservative bloggers at that level, and both the liberals and conservatives are paying for webspace, domain names, etc., we should shut down 300 of the liberal bloggers, lest they have "too much voice" and "gain undue influence?"
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 4:40 PM on October 14, 2004


The airwaves are considered a public thing tho, unlike blogs or newspapers...they're also a limited resource, and carefully regulated and licensed, unlike blogs or newspapers.
posted by amberglow at 4:58 PM on October 14, 2004


Except that they were expressly prohibited from referring to people in the audience.

I could have sworn they both referred to McCain and Guliani, who were both sitting front and center as well.
posted by Orb at 5:14 PM on October 14, 2004


Sadly, the Supreme Court agrees with you. I disagree with both you and the Supreme Court. (I've been accused of being a "first-amendment absolutist." I consider the label a badge of honor.)

as a "first-amendment absolutist", do you consider it constitutionally protected for you to yell "fire" in a crowded theatre despite their being no fire, should you feel like it? Do you consider lying under oath to be protected? What about signing your name to a contract just for fun?

Speech is meaningful and effective (it causes things), so just because we don't restrict the right to express beliefs does not mean that therefore any speech act or expressive act is protected. This is just a confusion. The first amendment is absolutely vital, because it insures that a citizen can disagree with the government and is entitled to make this clear without risk of punishment. What it does not guarantee and was never meant to guarantee is that anyone can say whatever they feel like just 'cause they feel like it.

Given this, campaign finance reform is more likely to save the first amendment than harm it - that is, if only those who can afford it can express their opinions, the ones most likely to be restricted are the ones most likely to be fighting the status quo, the ones for whom the amendment was originally meant.
posted by mdn at 5:14 PM on October 14, 2004


The airwaves are considered a public thing tho, unlike blogs or newspapers...they're also a limited resource, and carefully regulated and licensed, unlike blogs or newspapers.

That's frankly a better argument for restriction of speech than the "money != speech" argument. However, it supports restrictions only on the broadcast airwaves, and campaign finance reform goes far beyond that, imposing restrictions on all those other unlimited resources you mention. The argument is not suitable for someone attempting to defend McCain-Feingold in its entirety.

as a "first-amendment absolutist",

Ah, re-read my statement more carefully, mdn. I have been accused of being a first-amendment absolutist. I consider it a badge of honor to be so accused, as I go much farther than most in my belief in how much weight the first amendment should be given. But I do not claim to be a first-amendment absolutist.

do you consider it constitutionally protected for you to yell "fire" in a crowded theatre despite their being no fire, should you feel like it?

No. Completely irrelevant to current and proposed campaign finance reforms, as none of the speech which these restrict would pass the "clear and present danger" test under which shouting fire in a crowded theater is not protected.

Do you consider lying under oath to be protected?

I'm not sure about that one. But again, it's irrelevant to campaign finance reform, as I'm not aware of any restrictions therein which would apply only to statements made under oath. I very much believe that lying in general ought to be protected; otherwise, you set up someone as the arbiter of what constitutes a lie, and that scares the hell out of me. (Hey, maybe the Republican congress will decide which Democratic ads are actually lies and thus ought to be forbidden. I'm sure they can be trusted to do an objective job at distinguishing lies from truth.) And before you ask, yes, I would do away with slander and libel laws if it were within my power to do so. Yes, I'm aware this is probably a highly unpopular opinion.

What about signing your name to a contract just for fun?

I fail to see how that has anything to do with freedom of speech, let alone campaign finance reform.

if only those who can afford it can express their opinions

There's the key fallacy. Large expenditures of money on the part of some does not prevent others from speaking as well. Does it give those others a small percentage of the total messages heard? Sure. But as long as the listeners have the freedom to choose which messages they want to listen to, the speakers with limited funds cannot be drowned out by those with more money.

I should have made this point in my earlier response to rushmc, as he commits the same fallacy ("disproportionate voice"). Look at it this way. Suppose a certain cable TV company offers 60 channels. 59 of those channels offer nothing but conservative propaganda. and 1 offers solely liberal propaganda. Now, if televisions somehow randomly tuned themselves to channels, I'd agree that the overwhelming preponderance of conservative channels was "drowning out" the liberal message. But televisions don't work like that. Viewers are free to choose which channel to watch, or, for that matter, to not watch at all and get information from non-television sources. Given that, the conservative channels have not gained "undue influence" just because of their overwhelming numbers. (They may gain what you would consider "undue influence" if viewers choose to watch and believe them, but since that's a choice on the part of the viewers, well, that's tough noogies for you.)
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:03 PM on October 14, 2004


Equal time and the fairness doctrine worked well for so long--they should be brought back and reinforced. This shows what we've lost: The Communications Act of 1934 directs the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to give radio and television stations limited, three year licenses to serve "the public interest, convenience, and necessity." The Supreme Court has declared, in upholding the constitutionality of the "fairness doctrine," that the interests of the broadcast audience are paramount.
To qualify for relicensing every three years, broadcasters must produce local programming, news, and public affairs. They cannot just maximize profit by serving up the cheapest entertainment available. They must deal with controversy and provide some opportunity for a range of views to be heard. They must present free "public service announcements." There are limits to the number of commercials they can run per hour. They may not favor candidates for public office, but must provide an "equal opportunity" for reaching voters (sometimes called "equal time") to each contender. There are many other requirements.

posted by amberglow at 7:14 PM on October 14, 2004


They may not favor candidates for public office, but must provide an "equal opportunity" for reaching voters (sometimes called "equal time") to each contender.

Does that mean Badnarik and Nader and Cobb would get equal time with Bush and Kerry? If so, I might even be for that. However, I don't believe that's how "equal time" was interpreted when it was in effect in the past.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:57 PM on October 14, 2004


Anderson and Perot got equal time, and many votes. It used to be set at a certain percentage of support. There are thousands of people that run for President each cycle.
posted by amberglow at 8:13 PM on October 14, 2004


Actually, only Anderson did, thanks to the League of Women Voters--equal time was gone by the time Perot came around and had already been weakened before then when it came to debates. In 1975, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) created a loophole so broadcast networks could get around the equal time provision. It ruled that as long as debates were "bona fide news events" sponsored by some organization other than the networks, they would be exempt from equal time requirements.

The second televised debate pitted President Gerald Ford against Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter in 1976. This debate is remembered for a remark by Ford that was played up by the press as a major blunder; Carter benefited when Ford said, "There is no Soviet domination of Eastern Europe."

The 1976, 1980, and 1984 debates were sponsored by the non-partisan League of Women Voters. The League worked on behalf of the public by openly pushing for lively debate formats and the inclusion of third-party and independent candidates.

When, in 1980, President Carter refused to participate in a debate that included both Republican challenger Ronald Reagan and independent John Anderson, the League insisted on Anderson's inclusion and proceeded to hold a televised Reagan-Anderson debate without Carter. Ronald Reagan was able to use the first debate to outline his agenda to a national audience, and many believe he could not have won the presidency without the debates.

posted by amberglow at 8:35 PM on October 14, 2004


Anderson and Perot got equal time, and many votes. It used to be set at a certain percentage of support. There are thousands of people that run for President each cycle.

I don't much care for the "certain percentage of support" standard, because then the major parties (or their representatives via the FCC or whoever) simply set the percentage high enough that alternate candidates are excluded. But you're right, it would be infeasible to include everyone who claims to be running for president. I am hardly original in suggesting that the standard should be "any candidate who is on the ballot in enough states such that he would win a majority of electoral college votes, if he won every state in which he appears on the ballot." (Yes, the major parties could still game this through ballot access laws, but it would be harder since they'd have to do it state by state.)
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 8:47 PM on October 14, 2004


I'm game for that, DA. We'd all benefit from more voices in the mix, something we're seeing less and less of.
posted by amberglow at 8:50 PM on October 14, 2004


But as long as the listeners have the freedom to choose which messages they want to listen to, the speakers with limited funds cannot be drowned out by those with more money.

That may be the most naive statement I've read on Mefi this year. Most people don't choose to locate and select the one channel out of 60 that self-identifies as "liberal," or whatever. Most people just take in environmental chatter and process it. And GIGO.
posted by rushmc at 9:48 PM on October 14, 2004


Naive? Perhaps, if it's naive to believe that most people are capable of making intelligent decisions on their own.

On the other hand, if most people are incapable of critical analysis and intelligent decsion, then democracy itself is fundamentally flawed, and cannot be fixed simply by making sure people get more accurate information.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 10:18 PM on October 14, 2004


I think what you need to remember is that most people do not have the average IQ/intelligence of say, the average metafilter user.

Millions of Americans blindly follow their parents and vote the ticket, regardless of the track record of their current incumbents.

Sad, but true. Not a bit of thinking involved.
posted by kamylyon at 12:05 AM on October 15, 2004


The truth lies between the two extremes, I'll agree. But it's a fallacy to assume it lies in the middle of the two extremes.

Well, of course, but you're dealing in semantics. Sure, there are degrees, but if you want the truth its best to balance both sides.

If someone reads your statement and then rushmc's 'well said' response, they may take it at face value and not realize how far rushmc leans left.

Really, all I'm advocating is basic common sense. The problem is that with extreme groups the virtue of self awareness is sadly lacking. This thread is the perfect example.
posted by justgary at 1:13 AM on October 15, 2004


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The Candidate.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:26 AM on October 15, 2004


if most people are incapable of critical analysis and intelligent decsion, then democracy itself is fundamentally flawed, and cannot be fixed simply by making sure people get more accurate information.

Bingo. Information alone is useless if one does not know what to do with it.

If someone reads your statement and then rushmc's 'well said' response, they may take it at face value and not realize how far rushmc leans left.

So now I lean left? Cool...keep me posted.
posted by rushmc at 10:33 AM on October 15, 2004


Naive? Perhaps, if it's naive to believe that most people are capable of making intelligent decisions on their own.

It's naive to think people are capable of making intelligent decisions before they know what they issues are. How does someone even know about the 1/60th liberal channel to start with? It's naive to imagine you're not shaped by your environment at all - that a public sphere that is ~98% conservative will have no effect on your beliefs.

My examples of lying under oath, etc, were to illustrate that free speech is not about "saying whatever you feel like under any circumstance" but about the right to express dissent, the right to proclaim your antagonism to the government or administration without the government punishing you. Being able to buy up airwaves is not protected speech.
posted by mdn at 12:42 PM on October 15, 2004


It's naive to think people are capable of making intelligent decisions before they know what they issues are.

So people need someone like you to tell them what the issues are? No, deciding what issues are relevant is part of that intelligent decision making which I believe most people are capable of.

How does someone even know about the 1/60th liberal channel to start with?

My example posited one liberal channel among 60, not 1/60th of a liberal channel. But assuming you meant that, how does someone find a blog worth reading, among the tens of thousands that are out there? I guess in your worldview, people aren't capable of choosing one blog from the many.

My examples of lying under oath, etc, were to illustrate that free speech is not about "saying whatever you feel like under any circumstance" but about the right to express dissent, the right to proclaim your antagonism to the government or administration without the government punishing you.

Do you believe that "you're free to express whatever you like, as long as you don't express it to more than two other people at a time" is an acceptable law? Because it certainly sounds to me that it would be acceptable under your criteria.

Being able to buy up airwaves is not protected speech.

I love how campaign finance reform apologists always try to shift the debate to airwaves alone. I can understand why, since the amount of communications which can be conducted over broadcast (as opposed to cable) television and radio are naturally limited by the spectrum itself. Buying up a large portion of the spectrum, does, in fact, leave less of that spectrum available for others.

But, as I've already pointed out in this thread, it doesn't work as a defense of McCain-Feingold and other proposed campaign finance reforms, because they do not merely restrict communications over they airwaves. They ALSO restrict speech (or, if you like "expenditures on speech") in essentially unlimited media such as books, magazines, newspaper, and the internet. In these media, people buying up some of a medium does not make the medium any less accessible to anyone else. Yet McCain-Feingold makes no distinction between limited and unlimited media, and places the same restrictions on both. Talking about the electromagnetic spectrum as a limited resource doesn't fly as a defense of campaign finance reform, because campaign finance reform doesn't limit its restrictions only to broadcasts over that spectrum.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 2:28 PM on October 15, 2004


Bush and Kerry will spend over half a BILLION dollars campaigning for this election. If you don't see the problem with that, DevilsAdvocate, then we have no common ground from which to debate.
posted by rushmc at 3:47 PM on October 15, 2004


My only problem with it lies in that part of the half a billion that comes from taxes.

Just as the power to tax is the power to destroy, the power to restrict spending money on speech is the power to restrict speech itself. If you fail to see that, then we indeed have no common ground from which to debate.

Oh, but I am curious about one thing you said earlier, which I failed to look at closely enough when I read it before:

Not everyone can afford an old-style printing press, but those who can shouldn't be permitted to use them to gain undue influence over Congress, for example.

I'm curious to know how you think I might go about using my old-style printing press to "gain undue influence over Congress," if there were no restrictions on its use.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 5:56 PM on October 15, 2004


If it was a really big printing press (TimeWarner or Viacom or Fox), and you hired the most paperboys (lobbyists), and paid off the congressmen (contributed millions to their campaigns/pet causes/etc), like big media companies do, then there you go.
posted by amberglow at 6:01 PM on October 15, 2004


Not to mention influenced elections with biased coverage.
posted by rushmc at 7:04 PM on October 15, 2004


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