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Debate Reformers Disappointed -- for Now

By Jose Antonio Vargas
If the past three televised debates are any indication, we shouldn't expect much from tonight's 90-minute showdown.

One moderator, the veteran CBS newsman Bob Schieffer, asking a slew of questions -- this time focused on domestic policy. Two candidates, Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama, responding with scripted, soundbite-sized remarks. A shortchanged audience -- us -- craving a substantive exchange of ideas but instead getting a screen-capture ready TV show.

For Americans who've participated in this marathon presidential campaign online, these debates have been painfully archaic.

Last week, following the second presidential debate, a broad, bipartisan group of online thinkers and activists called the Open Debate Coalition asked McCain and Obama to help adopt the principles of "open debate." That means people should be allowed to share debate moments on YouTube and other video-sharing sites without being charged as copyright lawbreakers. It also means that bottom-up voting technology should be used to allow people to ask questions of the candidates -- taking some power away from producers and journalists and giving it to everyday voters. In short, an updated and interactive debate format that runs counter to what's been implemented by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) thus far.

To the chagrin of online activists -- including the founders of Craigslist.org, Wikipedia.org and the heads of MoveOn.org and RedState.com -- their principles have taken a backseat. Though Obama and McCain, in letters to the coalition, agreed to the principles, the commission did not adopt them.

MoveOn's Adam Green told The Trail that "2008 will likely be the last year that the Commission on Presidential Debates will exist as we know it. In the future, voters will demand interactions with the candidates that are democratic, transparent and accountable to the public."

Andrew Rasiej, founder of Personal Democracy Forum, said: "Four years from now, the public's use of the Internet to connect with each other and organize around like-minded interests will force the candidates and the debate commission to significantly abandon the limited format of televised debates and move more of the discourse from the scarcity model constraints of TV to the limitless potential and abundance the Internet offers."

"Hopefully," Rasiej added, "comparing the 2012 debates to those of 2008 will be like comparing a 5th generation iPhone to a bullhorn."

The pressure is on CPD, which should take notes on a partnership announced today by YouTube and PBS. On a new site called Video Your Vote, voters can upload videos of their voting experience -- and any problems they face in polls across the country -- on Election Day. Some of the videos will be broadcast on PBS on Nov. 4. This marriage of the old (PBS) and new (YouTube) showcases what the Internet offers democracy: greater transparency and voices of everyday people.

This is one in a series of online columns on our growing "clickocracy," in which we are one nation under Google, with e-mail and video for all. Please send suggestions, comments and tips to vargasj@washpost.com.

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 15, 2008; 3:07 PM ET
Categories:  B_Blog , Barack Obama , John McCain , The Clickocracy , The Debates  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: McCain's Tough Task as 18 Months of Debates End Tonight
Next: Michelle Obama: We're Underdogs to the End

Comments

I came back to this article to see what you kids were up to and what you were talkin' about.

JohnnyREP: You got me!

I'm so happy that nonsense you were throwing was a joke. :)

Posted by: styna | October 15, 2008 6:33 PM | Report abuse

Conservadrones are the biggest wimps in the frickin world!

Not only do you need guns to feel safe, you need to have a huge right-wing extremist media circle jerk to tell you what to think.

I laughed so hard at some your posts that I pee'd myself and had change my shorts!

PALIN=BUSH in a Skirt(no pun intended)

Thanks McCain! For the potential of leaving the "RED BUTTON" in the hands of an amateur.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

jmk55 spewed: "[some naive spew about Frank 3 years ago]"

Do YOUR homework conservadrone. Most (like all) agreed it was lack of regulation caused our problems with our economy. If Republicans couldn't fix it in EIGHT YEARS they don't deserve to be in power.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

jmk55,

You are a complete wack job, aren't you? How many conspiracy theories have you subscribed to over the years? Did you freak out about Y2KI'm beginning to think you're pulling a JohhnREP, just repeating Republican talking points because you are bored at work.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

ACORN,FRANK,OBAMA,AYERS,WRIGHT, REED, PELLOSI
FUTURE IS SO BRIGHT I GOTTA WEAR SHADES

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

johnny and grant, you guys need to do some studying on the mortgage and deregulation issues. You are both way behind in this area.

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse
___
This is coming from a guy who can't quite understand how percentages work.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

jmk

please feel free to let me know what rush libaugh said is wrong with the economy today

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

jmk55,

OK, but again, do you understand the difference between paying a percentage of your own wages and paying a percentage of the government's revenue?

This is important becayse you are complaining that people are paying a larger percentage of their wages and citing statistics based on the government's revenue to back up your point...which is just plain wrong.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

johnny and grant, you guys need to do some studying on the mortgage and deregulation issues. You are both way behind in this area.

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

ninjagin

maybe you didnt catch it but i wasnt serious it is impossible to take all the guns away most people understand this and do not fall for it

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Grant_x, I do realize that the scenario is rapidly changing and that many people are getting screwed. I know that there are economically disadvantaged areas, even states
and it a shame that so many jobs are being shipped overseas, but I don't see democrats
doing anything to change this. What I see happening in America, is everyone blames everyone for everything. Everyone sues everyone for everything. Nobody wants to take responsibility for their actions.
The words like honesty, integrity, morality and ethics are no longer commonly known nor understood.
30 years ago, I said that the Greed and the Unions will destroy the middle class. I don't even want to go there

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

grant

i am far from republican i just get bored at work and enjoy pissing people off with republican nonsense theories

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse
___
Hook, line, and sinker!

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyREP, you don't have to worry about an Obama administration taking away our guns. Logistically, it's too difficult to do, it would drive gun owners into the shadow economy, and it would spoil a great deal of comity between marksmen and hunters of both parties, to say nothing of those who keep firearms for personal or home protection. The "gonna take away our guns" line is just fear-baiting. Don't fall for it. Yes, I'm another liberal dem, but I'm also NRA and hold a Fed Firearms License. Ease up. The sky isn't going to fall. Everything will be just fine.

Posted by: ninjagin | October 15, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

grant

i am far from republican i just get bored at work and enjoy pissing people off with republican nonsense theories

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

jmk

actually the democrats had nothing to do with giving poor people mortages. That was the greedy commision based mortgage lenders who got paid based on volume as well as size of the mortgage. this led to more greedy corporate bullsh*t mortgage backed securities insured by nonsense and that is why we are in this position today

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse
___
Wow JohnnyREP, we agree on something. Thanks to deregulation, they were able to give out these mortgages. Seems that even the Republicans agree that this should be regulated now, as do the democrats and especially Obama who has spoken about regulating their practices at length. In fact, this is an issue where both candidate agree.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

thenotoriousflavio

your another one go support your communist leader. if he wins i cant wait to see what the country looks like at the end of his 4 years. That terrorist will have this country destroyed he will take all our guns away and destroy our economy maybe osama bin laden will be chief of the treasury who knows

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse
___
Now Obama's going to take your guns away! What next...religion? Whatever will you cling to?

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

jmk

actually the democrats had nothing to do with giving poor people mortages. That was the greedy commision based mortgage lenders who got paid based on volume as well as size of the mortgage. this led to more greedy corporate bullsh*t mortgage backed securities insured by nonsense and that is why we are in this position today

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

jmk55 wrote: "ACORN and dems wanted to give poor people mortgages and loans and we are all paying the price. "
___
So now ACORN gave out mortgages too? Did they also fund Al Quaeda in the 80's?

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyOnTheSpotREP spewed "[some more incontinent spew]...our country after four years"

Listne honey, I just need to look at the LAST EIGHT YEARS and think about where we are at now.

That'a all I need to think about.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

jmk55,

You keep going on with the 45% but you didn't pay attention to my post at all. You clearly don't understand the difference between paying a percentage of your own income and paying a percentage of the government's revenue.

Until then, your points are pointless.

Also, I would beg to differ on the poor not being poor, as you assert. The percentage of poor in this country is increasing, the gap between the poor and the rich is increasing, and maintaining a middle clas wage is getting harder to do.

The statistics to back up these assertions are there for you to look up...though I can't speak to your personal experience. Maybe the poor in your neighborhood do all drive SUV's. You just have to realize that this scenario does not represent what is really going on in America.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

theno...are you that naive to believe that it is administration's fault that our economy failed? Thank your democrats, Frank, Reed and others. Bush wanted to regulate the market 3 years ago, and the dems killed the plan. ACORN and dems wanted to give poor people mortgages and loans and we are all paying the price. It is an unfortunate truth, that so called An American Dream, for some people will remain just a dream for all their lives. That is the truth and it can not be changed.

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyOnTheSpotREP spewed "[some racial incontinent spew about taxes and welfare]"

Invest my tax dollars into the companies that have destroyed our economy? Dude, trickle-down economics is SO last centurty (like McCain).

We need a new paradigm, and OBAMA is the only one who can deliver it

OH YEAH! Like McCain understands the "middle class". The two words his 8 house, 13 car a*s forgot to mention in the last two debates.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

thenotoriousflavio

your another one go support your communist leader. if he wins i cant wait to see what the country looks like at the end of his 4 years. That terrorist will have this country destroyed he will take all our guns away and destroy our economy maybe osama bin laden will be chief of the treasury who knows

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

jmk55 & JohnnyREP,

Yikes! If you two are my fellow Americans, I'm scared!

I'm moving to Norway.

Posted by: styna | October 15, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyREP,

It would be easy for me to call you names as you call me names, but I won't. I am more mature than that.

What you just did was rregurgitate the theory of trickle down economics for me again. Thank you for that, but I understand the theory.

What I asked you to do is show how this policy has helped over the last thirty years. Give me some facts, or at least one fact. I mean, in thirty years you'd think that there was at least one shining example of the benefits of trickle down economics for you to tout.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Our (and the world's) economy is in the crapper because (regardless of what all you conservadrones have been taught to say) the Republicans in eight years have bee too focused on making money and not doing the job government was meant to do i.e. protect the taxpayer via regulation.

If the Republicans couldn't fix any mistakes made by prior adminstrations in EIGHT YEARS, then they don't derserve to have power

Just like McCain who can't even run his own campaign, how the hell is he supposed to run the country

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

WHAT IF? this is a question asked for hundreds of years but nobody came with an answer yet. I wonder why

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

grant x

its real simple you jackass companies make more money because they dont have to pay taxes for some lazy welfare bum (like yourself) to buy cigarettes and malt liquir while you collect government cheese. therefore they have more money left over to grow the business and create more jobs and pay more

if you cant understand that you really are stupid

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

This so called poor middle class is not so poor. If you consider that 45% of people don't pay taxes, they do not belong to American middle class. Sorry to insult you, but they are useless and they take advantage of the system. The rest is doing quite well. Only to Obama, American middle class is staving, because he focuses on the lower 45% who don't work, deal drugs, can't read and write, etc. Look at our streets, look at SUVs
Do you see this poor middle class car pooling, riding buses, driving fuel efficient little cars"? Hell NO - that's your poor middle class

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Here's one UNDENIABLE TRUTH about McCain's tax plan.

In the end the richest people in the country will get the BIGGEST tax break. That includes all the WALL ST PIRATES that have sunk our (and the world's economy).

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

jmk55, If you and I lived in a two person country where I made 100,000 and you made 1,000,000, and we both pay 10%, then you pay 100,000 a year and I pay 10,000 a year.

There are two ways to look at this. One way is that we both pay 10% or our paycheck to the government. The other way is that you pay 91% of the the Government's revenue whereas I only pay 9%.

You are choosing to point out the latter scenario without considering the former.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse


McCain and the "VICTORY" shame

McCain and the Republicans bring dishonor to our troops by applying the "Victory/Defeat" label to Iraq.

Our troops have followed their orders and have served with honor and dignity in Iraq. To add this polarizing label is to add the burden of shame to the backs of troops that already have suffered enough. As a Vietnam vet, McCain should know what the vets of that era went through when they came home and were labeled losers.

General Patraeus himself said he'd "Never Declare Victory" in this interview on 9/11/08 of all days!

McCain is wrong and just doesn't get it.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 15, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

45% of so called taxpayers are net income receivers and pay ZERO taxes, you guys want to verify this? Check with your friendly IRS
I don't want Obama's money but I don't want to pay for this 45% either

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyREP and jmk55,

Can you two rocket scientists put your brains together to answer how trickle down economics has helped the poor and middle class like it was designed to do nearly 30 years ago?

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Gran_x, you have no clue what I am talking about. You tax me extra 10%, and I in return lay you off! End of story. The tax system needs to be reformed as it is outdated, but until that happens there is nothing we can do about it. Out of all Exxon/Mobil's profits, only 1.5% went to CEOs, the rest is in your IRAs, 401Ks etc. You can't always look on the $s only at percentages

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

jmk55

f the people that dont pay taxes i aint trying to buy no groceries for some drug dealer that aint paying taxes thats what obama wants hes a communist

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Grant_x, are you Malcolm_x's kuz? You sure sound like you belong to the bottom 45% who wants the free-bees. shame shame

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

grant x

where did you get you education from smart guy and judging by the amount of time you have spent on this blog i can clearly see you dont work

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

jmk55,

Remember, tax breaks for the top 5% don't create jobs, they just make richer CEO's. Show how tax breaks have created jobs besides WalMart type positions, or how they increase the amount of pay that blue collar workers receive.

Tax breaks benefit CEO's first, the business needs second, then if anything's left over, the employees.

That's a long way to trickle.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyREP - right on the money! Obama wants to tax the top 5% of taxpayers who create 95% of jobs in this country. FYI all, top 50% of taxpayers pay over 97% of ALL federal taxes paid. Guess how much is left? Bottom 45% pays NO TAXES AT ALL! These are the people that Obama wants to give the free money. Welcome to Obama's socialist America.

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse
___
Obama's America sounds awesome.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyREP, You'd better hope that Obama does not ask McCain if McCain thinks Obama is a terrorist. McCain would say "No."

Also, heres a little newsflash about communism...We WON! Communism is over! Even China has a capatalist economy.

You need to be afraid of those that passed the Patriot Act, the people that told and still tell you that you should give up your rights in order to make you safe.

As Ben Franklin said, "Those who would give up their rights for the illusion of security deserve neither."

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

JohnnyREP - right on the money! Obama wants to tax the top 5% of taxpayers who create 95% of jobs in this country. FYI all, top 50% of taxpayers pay over 97% of ALL federal taxes paid. Guess how much is left? Bottom 45% pays NO TAXES AT ALL! These are the people that Obama wants to give the free money. Welcome to Obama's socialist America.

Posted by: jmk55 | October 15, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

grant x

you are what is wrong with this country you are all greedy communists

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Thanks jmcgill1, good point. If I get extra money from tax relief, it is going to me first, the business second, then employees third.

Any other order would be stupid business.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

jmcgill1

you are an idiot you dont understand the problems your createing by trying to put a terrorist in office. Keep to you liberal CBS bullsh*t TV and praise your unexperienced communist leader

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

"Grant_x

you dont know nothing, if my employer doesnt make money I aint going to make money. They need lower taxes to pay me more. I love politics everyone thinks they are a expert"


1. If I were your employer, I would ask myself why, given that there are educated people out there who might be looking for work.

2. As your employer, if I got some extra money, either in the form of capital or tax reduction, among the very last things I would think to do is to distributed it among employees. It's much more likely to be used to service debt, make a capital improvement, or go into my pocket.

You dismiss people for thinking "they are a expert (sic.)" with writing that sounds like you dropped out of school in second grade.

Why should you be taken seriously?

Posted by: jmcgill1 | October 15, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Grant_x

you dont know nothing, if my employer doesnt make money I aint going to make money. They need lower taxes to pay me more. I love politics everyone thinks they are a expert

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse
___
It's "you don't know anything." Saying you don't know nothing is a double negative, and means I know something.

Regardless, you have just regurgitated a Republican talking point. How about this...BACK IT UP! Show and describe how trickle down economics has benifitted the poor and middle class. Show how more jobs have been created...not just jobs at WalMart but real, good paying jobs. Make your point. I'll listen.

Until then, however, you are just another one of the cattle regurgitating your cud.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

If this debate really does allow the two candidates to hash it out with each other, McCain doesn't stand a chance. Once his talking points end, so does he. Obama can go on for hours on end if you let him. McCain better not open up a can of worms he can't close.

McCain had better stay away from any associations with Ayers, Rezko, Wright, etc., because Obama can easily counter with Keating and G. Gordon Liddy.

McCain has to hope that Obama does not ask him, "Do you really believe I am a Muslim and not a Christian," or "Do you really think I am a terrorist or that I am trying to take down America from the inside?" McCain would say no, and then even the extreme racist, un-American, fundamentally religious right wingers would abandon him.

If this debate is reduced to talking points, then McCain is truly done. If this debate sways from those talking points, McCain is not just done but so is the Republican party.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Well, I guess I'm old-school, but I have really appreciated these debates. The ones where candidates are both trying to speak at the same time and outshout each other are useless. Here you get carefully thought out answers to good, solid questions. I'm not sure opening to Fred from Main Street is a good use of our time, frankly.

Posted by: Gramps52 | October 15, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Grant_x

you dont know nothing, if my employer doesnt make money I aint going to make money. They need lower taxes to pay me more. I love politics everyone thinks they are a expert

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 15, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

As frustrated as many of us may be with the debates, we have to get real. Candidates never try to WIN elections, they try not to LOSE elections. Since the goal is not to lose we are always going to see 'debates' on the safe side. That is, the purpose of a debate, at least as far as the campaign teams of the candidate go, is not to make a mistake during the debate. That means not taking risks during the debate; not saying something or doing something that will show up negatively in an opponents tv spots after the debate. Making sure that you say nothing during a debate that can be fodder for the next debate, or that can be used as part of a stump speech in the days following the debate. Probably the only way to have a 'real debate' would be to stage it as a surprise to the candidates and their campaign teams so there could be no preparation - now there's a concept: a spontaneous debate. Fat chance of that happening. Can't happen as long as the rules of the debate are discussed and agreed upon prior to the debate. The "real" debate happens in back rooms when they are negotiating the terms and rules of the debate. It would be neat to think that the purpose of a debate was to provide the public with more information about issues, about the candidate's personalities - but that is not the purpose, not even close. The debates are about NOT LOSING. Get comfortable with that concept because that's the way it will always be

Posted by: bperryjrhome | October 15, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

steelsil2, We've been trying trickle down economics for almost 30 years, and the poor and middle class have yet to see anything trickle down.

This was a bad policy from the get-go indeed.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

The final presidential debate is upon us. Hopefully tonight will be different from the last debates that seem so scripted, they become boring. We want a real debate, like local politics! Let them have it out a bit. This is America, either you know how to argue your side or you don't. Let these two men show us which one is ready to lead us, not who has the best scripted response.

http://www.congratstothewinners.com/2008/10/final-presidential-debate.html

Posted by: FriendlyFred1 | October 15, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Anyhow, in order for our nation to be truly transparent, a lot of the paranoia on the right needs to be quelled. These are people who don't trust anything, including and especially opinions of people on the internet. Sure, there are a lot of wackos out there, but all you have to do is read what they say, think if that matched up with reality, then form an opinion. It's really not that hard.

But, if you can't type, and you can't read, the internet does seem like a crazy stream of words and characters you can't understand. You tube could help with the illiterate, but not with the willfully ignorant.

I agree, however, that a common understanding of the internet would be helpful in providing transparency in our democracy. I would welcome that for sure.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

I think that they were both dancing around the issues in the last debate because they were saving all their real punches for this last debate. I think things will get interesting with this last debate.

Posted by: legal_jess | October 15, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

If lower taxes for the rich and less regulation for corporations are the answer to creating a good economy, why are we in so much trouble? The Republican party has been in power for 8 years, and these policies have all but wrecked our country's economy. Now McCain proposes to lower the taxes for the rich yet more, and to pay for a huge givaway to fat cats in Wall Street, paid for with your tax dollars.

McCain hoped to harness an ugly, slavering beast comprised of far-right paranoia, hatred, fear, prejudice, and ignorance, and ride it to victory, but now he is starting realize that many Americans dislike his substitution of slander for an actual discussion of the issues.

His zig-zagging on slandering Obama is just one more example of his increasingly erratic behavior and poor judgment, and yet more proof that he has completely lost his moral center--the result of selling his soul to the Karl Rove faction of the Republican party. He is retracting some of his slanders, not because he has repented of them, but because he sees that they have backfired by alienating the undecided voters that he needs if he is to have any hope of winning.

To all of this we have to add McCain's truly horrible pick for Vice President. What was he thinking? He's 72 years old and has had repeated bouts with cancer! Can any of us really imagine a President Palin? The thought is frightening-she is far more ignorant and inexperienced than our current president was when he took office, and we have seen what a disaster he created: The occupation of Iraq, the hunt for Bin Laden, Katrina, Wall Street and the banking deregulation fiasco have combined to create a perfect storm of misery for the US.

McCain's claim to be a 'maverick' are absurd-he has voted with Bush 90% of the time, has over 80 lobbyists on his staff, and has elected to veer to the far right in his campaign, to the point of taking advice from Karl Rove. A better description would indeed be erratic, as he claims Obama would raise taxes more than he would one moment, and then the next moment comes up his very own $300,000,000 pork-barrel give-away program to people who borrowed money they couldn't possibly pay back.

I don't think many of us are enjoying the McCain campaign's tactic of slandering the opposition instead of focusing on the issues. Certainly, for every negative thing they say about Obama, they have a similar or worse charge that can be leveled against McCain. Obama and Ayers? How about McCain and the Contras?

If you are enjoying the meltdown of the banking system and the Dow at 9000, you'll love a McCain Presidency--McCain was right there with Bush deregulating the banks and freeing them from the constraints that previously prevented this kind of greed-driven disaster. Think back, when was the last time you felt secure and prosperous? I'll bet Clinton was President. This is not a coincidence. Vote Obama, if you don't want another Great Depression.

Posted by: steelsil2 | October 15, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I thought Dr. Warren's questioning at Saddleback was much better than any of the formal "debate" so far.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 15, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse
___
This is the debate where the opening remarks about McCain being in a cone of silence were a lie...he heard Obama's answers to the questions and responded in kind...truly a biased affair.

Posted by: Grant_x | October 15, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I thought Dr. Warren's questioning at Saddleback was much better than any of the formal "debate" so far.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 15, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

The ODC is a sham:

http://24ahead.com/blog/archives/008048.html

Two of those involved in the ODC were involved in earlier efforts that saw weak questions propelled to the top of the list. I strongly suspect that some of those involved in the ODC simply wanted another crack at forcing weak questions to the top rather than confronting the candidates with real questions.

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | October 15, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

See a McCain rally go bad, Booing and People leaving. A song Hank Williams sang was vulgar and offended some. Heres the clip
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPOpP89oMik

Who won the Best Palin Impersonator Contest? Not Tina Fey. See Clip.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMebGbcC2Sg

Posted by: pastor123 | October 15, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse


BRADLEY EFFECT + ?ABLE ELECTRONIC VOTING = 2000 REDUX?

Obama needs to be aggressive tonight and NOT just sit on his "lead" -- because there may be no lead at all by Election Day.

Today's Politico lead story indicates that the Rev. Wright issue will be resurrected in McCain TV advertising... alongside of Rezko, Ayers and ACORN.

If McCain plays "guilt by association," Obama should bring up the Alaska Independence Party; Todd Palin's membership in a group that advocates seccession from the U.S.; its founder's anti-American statements; and ask the question:

"Is your running mate Sarah Palin palling around with someone who pals around with enemies of the state?

If Obama lays back, he could see his lead diminish as the "fear factor" takes hold -- as it always seems to do in the waning days of recent presidential campaigns.

ARE THE McCAIN-PALIN CROWD AGITATORS THE SAME STORMTROOPERS WHO DO THIS:

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/american-gestapo-state-supported-terrorism-targets-u-s-citizens

What if McCain's real strategy is aimed NOT at voters, but at the apparachik?

McCAIN-PALIN'S 'FELLOW TRAVELER' INSINUATIONS:
WHAT IF U.S. SECURITY FORCES AGREE?

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/mccain-palins-fellow-traveler-insinuations-what-if-u-s-security-forces-agree
OR members.nowpublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | October 15, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

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