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Saddleback Forum: First Thoughts

The much-anticipated religion forum hosted by mega-church pastor Rick Warren and featuring Barack Obama and John McCain last night in California passed largely without incident -- as both candidates successfully navigated the occasionally treacherous waters of a detailed discussion about faith and values.

The Fix was taking Mrs. Fix out to dinner during the proceedings -- the last night before field hockey season starts in earnest! -- but thanks to the wonders of Tivo watched the event this morning.

Below you'll find our thoughts. Watch the forum and have your own opinions? The comments section awaits.

• Obama's goal seemed to be to convey steadiness and seriousness, which he did well. A forum like this is actually far better suited to Obama's strengths than the string of debates earlier this year. In debates the Illinois senator always appeared to be stuffing a 10-minute response into a two-minute answer. Last night, Obama came across as thoughtful and introspective -- his professorial background seemed to work in his favor. And, he clearly was enjoying himself: "I want people to know me well," Obama told Warren at one point. "If we are both known and people know where we stand on issues, I trust in the American people."

• McCain had the crowd on his side from the get-go, receiving applause for nearly every answer he offered. The friendly crowd made him comfortable -- he repeatedly flashed his trademark wit and humor to keep the audience with him. Unlike Obama, however, McCain often fell back on standard stump speech rhetoric (and jokes -- DNA of bears!). The crowd didn't seem fazed.

• A contrast that Republicans had to be happy about came when Warren asked each candidate for their most gut-wrenching decision in their lives. Obama chose his decision to oppose the war in Iraq. McCain said it was his choice to remain as a prisoner of war despite an offer from his captors to, in effect, jump the line. McCain's life story is as powerful, if not more powerful, than that of any other politician in public life. While Obama's answer was sound, it dealt with a challenge in the political arena; McCain's decision served as evidence that he has lived his "country first" campaign slogan.

• McCain's "shoot from the hip" style may have hurt him when asked by Warren what "rich" meant. After noting that some of the richest people he knew were some of the most deeply unhappy and that he wanted everyone in America to be rich, McCain ad-libbed that $5 million a year in income would qualify as rich. That came roughly an hour after Obama had said that people making $150,000 a year were middle class and those making $250,000 were wealthy. Sensing a possible mistake, McCain quickly circled back to note "I am sure that comment will be distorted" and went on to note he was going to be "serious" for a moment -- emphasizing he was kidding before.

• On social issues, which are of special import to the evangelical voters both candidates are hoping to court, McCain went for a black and white approach while Obama emphasized shades of gray. On when human life begins, McCain said simply: "At the moment of conception." Obama, on the other hand, offered a far more philosophical answer; "Whether you are looking at it from a theological or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity is above my pay grade." McCain's answer drew wild applause; Obama's respectful silence.

• Both Obama and McCain offered convincing -- and strikingly similar -- explanations for why they wanted to be president, a surprisingly difficult question for some politicians to answer. Obama centered his answer on the "basic idea of empathy" -- that any person born in the United States can be anything he or she wants to be. McCain explained his motivation as a desire to "inspire a generation of Americans to serve a cause greater than their self interests" -- a well worn but effective definition of his life in elected politics. Each man highlighted the need to bring the country together and their own unique ability to do just that.

By Chris Cillizza  |  August 17, 2008; 1:09 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Comments

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Posted by: Gaursefaume | August 20, 2008 6:26 PM | Report abuse

McCray, you make a lot of great points. A couple I want to take issue with because they don't necessarily follow. (BTW, isn't it nice once all the rabble dies down to have threads for some serious conversation?)

If you mean atheism is a philosophical world view, arguably, it is. But there's a point where it diverges strongly from "religion." For one thing, it's a fallacy to reify a null--absence of a belief in something is not an assertive proposition; it merely challenges those who do assert the positive TO PROVE it. Furthermore, atheism differs from "religion" in other, real ways: there need be no congregation, church, or any of the other attributes associated with NOT believing in anything.

My second point about your otherwise outstanding posts (both of them) is that there are other non-mathemtical models that influence voters' behavior. For example, many voters could (and do) take a realistic appraisal of their life and determine it is unlikely that they will ever earn $250,000 per year, let alone $5,000,000. With that off the table as a consideration, other factors will fill in.

You write very well and, given most of the trash posted here in the first few days of an article, I look forward to seeing more of your ideas from time to time after the trolls move on to wherever other trolls go.

Posted by: Mike | August 19, 2008 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Our Constitution does not separate church from state. Our Constitution protects the church from the state and the state from the church by confining each to its own realm, kingdom, jurisdiction or domain.

Our Constitution respects the dual sovereignty of the individual human—spiritual and temporal. A good example of this can be found in the English system in the formal title of the House of Lords: “The Right Honourable the Lords Spiritual and Temporal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled.” See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Lords and http://www.answers.com/topic/bill-of-rights-1689-1.

In contrast to our history, structure and system of Government, the Bible, Mein Kampf, The Communist Manifesto and other religious books are copyright protected under the Copyright Clause of the Constitution. No politician can make these great books extinct. They may take them out of schools, but not out of our hands, ears and eyes. They can do this in other countries where the Bible and Mein Kampf are banned as hate speech.

The church is protected under the Constitution’s Clauses of Commerce, Due Process, Equal Protection, Warrants, Speech and Religion. The Constitution of the United States protected the Vatican and its Catholic Churches from being abolished for allowing the child abuses to result in a scandal; and President Clinton from a premature departure from the White House through the Impeachment process.

Both McCain and Obama blew it when they agreed to allow the church to host politics and politics to host the church. Both are willing to promote the politicization of the church—making them equally dangerous to the spiritual and temporal states of the human being.

Using my previous “tax the rich” analysis, McCain would be the better President since his vision of reality focuses on the larger issue of religion and large assemblies, while Obama’s reality would focus on the smaller issue of religion and smaller groups. Stated differently, McCain would attack and attempt to destroy large religions, while Obama would attack and succeed at destroying smaller religions and groups. Atheists are religious people. http://www.emccray.com.

Posted by: Emanuel McCray | August 19, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Contrasting the two candidates’ definition of “rich”: Rich to McCain: $5million. Rich to Obama: $250,000.00.

This was a perfect example of how the two would engage in class-warfare. The biggest deficiency lies in the failure to define “rich”.

The New International Webster’s Comprehensive Dictionary of the English Language defines rich as:

1. having large possessions, as of money, goods, or lands; wealthy; opulent. 5. Luxuriant; abundant.

When taxing the rich, Obama would be taxing more individual Americans than McCain. Consistent with the definition of “rich”, Obama would be looking at a person that makes $250,000.00 as having large possessions of money, goods, or lands; and as being wealthy, opulent, luxuriant, and abundant, without any hard evidence.

If you make $250,000.00, you probably have a little bit of money; one piece of land at best; one or two adult toys other than a vehicle for primary transportation, and so on. One thing certain, you would not have large possessions of anything, especially money. This is particularly true if you have a family.

Obama’s “tax the rich scheme”, would drive more Americans towards poverty and Government assistance and dependence than McCain’s “tax the rich scheme”.

Stated differently, Obama would expand the ranks of the poor; and would effectively demonstrate Obama’s opposition to any American seeking to achieve McCain’s definition of “rich”.

At most, McCain’s tax victims would end up as upper middle-class with the immediate potential to return to the status of rich.

Math always determines the best candidate. Everyone making less than $5million ought to be voting for McCain and his tax the rich scheme; while everyone making between $0.00 and $4.99million ought to be voting against Obama’s tax the rich scheme. If this happens, McCain should win in a landslide (68-75% of the votes, popular and electoral).
http://www.emccray.com

Posted by: Emanuel McCray | August 19, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

The Constitution states that “no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."

So the real question is- why are our candidates being asked about their faith in a religious setting? The truly conservative part of me feels that out of respect for the Constitution and one of the truly revolutionary ideas of our country's founding - the separation of church and state - the candidates should have refused to participate in such a forum. Does pandering to a certain religious group now supersede the need to uphold the Constitution?

A wonderful thing about our country is that one can believe whatever one wants in terms of religion. Another wonderful thing is that no one can legally force their own belief on anyone else- the primary reason that religion is kept out of politics. This forum and the ongoing dialogues about faith-based legislation show how far we have strayed from our founding ideals.

Posted by: Lynda | August 19, 2008 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Life, a biological distinction, begins at conception.

Rights, a political distinction, begins at birth.

There's nothing unclear about it, except to Christians who have trained themselves on the atrocious intellectual habit of placing Faith (I believe it because I believe it and that's that) over Reason (integration of all reality-based facts in a non-contradictory manner to derive a rational conclusion).

Posted by: Mike | August 19, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse

I do not wish to pick apart the regurgitated rhetoric in this article for you can find the same talking points in every liberal blog out there. I have often praised Obama for his speaking abilities though thought they lacked true substance, in this forum McCain clearly prevailed. My favorite characterization was, "paralysis by analysis” which Obama fell prey, which is exactly what you do not want in a President and shows the true lack of experience on his part. McCain made Obama look like a city councilman, which I feel better suits him. As aforementioned, Obama wins when reading a teleprompter written mostly by other people, however hard nosed, tell it like it is from the seat of your pants question and answer session, McCain dominated.
Without going into any specific issue, in regards to the "what does one consider rich" point made in this write up; tell me, do you feel pathetic bringing that up? Anyone with half a brain cell including a left wing extremist such as yourself knows that is not what he meant.
You're absurdly ridiculous sir.

Posted by: Ryan | August 19, 2008 1:14 AM | Report abuse

The people who believe the bible is the literal word of God will vote for McCain. Those who believe the bible is a guide to thoughtful, righteous living will vote for Obama. The bible endorses slavery so I personally believe it is not now and never was the literal word of God, but a compilation of many religious beliefs of early priests.

Posted by: afgail | August 19, 2008 12:34 AM | Report abuse

It is my understanding that this forum was televised at a church. If John McCain fabricated his story about the vietnamese soldier drawing the cross in the dirt, which is a moving scene in Benher, such a notion goes to his character and morals. In the event he may have obtained access to Obama's interview prior to his appearance expands the level of deception we have observed during this mud slinging campaign. I challenge the writer to determine whether McCain and Bush engaged in any level of propaganda during their communications with leaders in Georgia leading up to Russia's attack. More particularly, what was said and occurred during McCain's most recent visit to Georgia. I find it quite ironic that this chaos occurred several months following his visit. I also challenge the writer to determine whether Bush and McCain have any interests or investiments that can be linked to any company associated with the pipeline or oil company in the Georgia province.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 9:33 PM | Report abuse

McCain appeared clear, decisive, and much more polished than Obama.

---------------------------

It's always easy to appear clear, decisive, and polished when you are repeating a memorized stump speech.

Notice how often McCain faltered when he had to come up with an original answer? How about him stumbling over his memorized definition of marriage?

Posted by: eecee | August 18, 2008 7:46 PM | Report abuse

According to Obama 1.5% of American households are wealthy (>$250K per year) and 4.34% of American households are middle class ($150K - $250K). That makes just less than 95% of us poor. I thought middle class meant the middle?

Posted by: muD
-------------------------------

That's silly.

If you described a family with an income of $85K per year as "middle class" does that make a family with an income of $84K a year poor?

Posted by: eecee | August 18, 2008 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Obama's comment regarding the "specificity" on the abortion question was completely preposterous..."above my pay grade" are you kidding me! How could answering this most serious question dealing with "life" of a fetus be above BHO’s pay grade? This was a dodge of epic proportions. BHO refused to state his position because he knew the crowd would find it totally unacceptable. Is this the "judgment" that BHO professes to have?

Posted by: Jon H | August 17, 2008 2:18 PM

--------------------

It wasn't simply a question about the "life" of a fetus, it was a question about the "rights" of the fetus. The first raises profound ethical, philosophical, and scientific questions. The second raises, in addition to the profound moral questions, complicated legal questions.

Scholars, philosophers, theologians, and in the latter case, legal minds, have wrestled with these questions for hundreds if not thousands of years.

To recognize that fact is in your view "completely preposterous." To spout a simple-minded, pandering, four word pronouncement is what...presidential?

Of course the consquences of the resulting policy would be that all abortion would be criminalized. And that includes the use of any morning after pill, any IUD, and many forms of birth control pill.

Yee-haw, let's hear it for the simple answer!

Posted by: eecee | August 18, 2008 7:35 PM | Report abuse

McCain appeared clear, decisive, and much more polished than Obama. Barack has an annoying habit of stuttering and using uhms and simple gaps in his timing, and many people get turned off by it.

I support Obama, but he's got to work on making his responses less difficult to follow. McCain showed he'll be ready for the debates.

Posted by: Kevin | August 18, 2008 7:32 PM | Report abuse

As an Obama supporter, I think Obama and McCain both performed well at the Saddleback Forum. Obama demonstrated thoughtfulness and wit while showing that he is a Christian. McCain told his standard war stories and had the conservative Republican crowd eating out of his hand.

Posted by: Sam | August 18, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

"It is amazing to me how liberals are so certain McCain cheated, knew the questions ahead of time, yada...yada...yada"


I think it is irrelevant whether McCain knew the questions or not, because he treated every question as a jumping point to repeating his blustering stump speech talking points, no matter how tangential to the issue. We could have heard almost the exact same speech - down to the grizzly bear DNA joke - by attending one of his schnitzel hut rallies.

-----------------------

"On the issue of the viability of life: yes, a baby is a human. But a baby can never become a baby without first being a fetus. A fetus cannot exist without the act of conception. Hence, life begins at conception. There may be other issues regarding the pregnancy (rape, life of the mother, etc.), but those are separate issues."


McCain was not asked when life began. He was asked when he thought babies had "human rights." Quite different.

By insisting that those rights began at the "moment of conception," McCain was saying that under his administration the use of any form of morning after pills, any IUD, and many forms of birth control pills would be criminalized.

Posted by: eecee | August 18, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Has no one recorded the McCain section of the forum? At 19 minutes into the section McCain asked a strange question. I'm paraphrasing some but, "when can we get hack to the Supreme Court issue" and Warren responded with something like "we'll be getting to that later on". My wife and I had recorded the entire forum on our DVR and played the segment back twice and could not find where Warren had asked McCain any question about the Supreme Court before then. I believe that is fair proof that McCain had been prepared ahead of time or had been listening in while Obama was being queried. Shame on Warren. This shows what a sleezeball McCain relly is. Further reason why he almost didn't make it through the Academy (fifth from the bottom of his class, while drinking his way through off-base bars. A lousy pilot, too, lost four planes. I'll give him the fifth one in which he was shot down.

Dump McCain!

Posted by: wallyb | August 18, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

I really got sick of McCain trying to fit in every evangelical catch phrase he could think of, and frankly, that Obama would walk into the lion's den in which questions were tailored to be answered with evangelical catch phrases shows his willingness to be well known (as he stated during the event). I am glad he, too, did not take the bait. As a progressive Christian, I was deeply offended by the tone of the entire event. Warren says both Obama & McCain are his friends -- yeah, right.

Posted by: Rose | August 18, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Barack didn't do poorly at the answers

Barack did poorly at the 30 second campaign point to the consevative base of the republican party.

Barack's answer actually had explanations...unlike McCain's scripted 2/3rds...that they gave him on the ride over...

how exactly did he know Rick warren was going to ask the question that he asked obama about what to do with poor teachers...

you know the question of the three that Warren NEVER got to...but mcCain answered anyway.

go watch the tape.

It is not because McCain knew the answers that he did better...it's that he knew the answers that he didn't flub or blank out.

That's all anyone is saying.

Posted by: dl | August 18, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Barack did not do poorly. Barack is always thoughtful in his answers. Since when is it a crime to be intelligent? And..... McCain obviously knew the supreme court questions was coming up - you all need to look at the transcripts! And just because you are pro-choice does not mean one is anti life. Get over yourselves - we are only human. Humans make mistakes.

Posted by: claudiatucsonaz | August 18, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

It is amazing to me how liberals are so certain McCain cheated, knew the questions ahead of time, yada...yada...yada, when Obama's inexperience as a person and a leader is highlighted when up against someone of McCain's time on the earth. Under 200 days in Congress does not prepare one for political life, much less the US Presidency. This forum was quite revealing. I thought Obama responded well...I thought McCain responded much better.

On the issue of the viability of life: yes, a baby is a human. But a baby can never become a baby without first being a fetus. A fetus cannot exist without the act of conception. Hence, life begins at conception. There may be other issues regarding the pregnancy (rape, life of the mother, etc.), but those are separate issues.

Posted by: Oregon viewer | August 18, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Paul.

Posted by: Tre | August 18, 2008 3:09 PM | Report abuse

"Sen. Barack Obama has grown up with the teaching of very angry, militant white and black people: the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, William Ayers and Rev. Michael Pfleger. We cannot say we are not affected by teachers who are militant and angry. We know too well that we become like them, and Mr. Obama will run this country in their mindset."

No, Barack Obama grew up in Hawaii, in a multi-racial, multi-ethnic generally tolerant environment. He met Wright as an adult and has condemned Farrakhan. If you're going to condemn Ayers for things he did 40 years ago, don't forget to condemn Dubya for his cocaine and drinking habits more recently than that, and McCain for playing around while his wife was in the hospital and doing favors for his rich banker friends.

Posted by: Susan | August 18, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

"At what point does a baby get human rights in your view?" Rick Warren question at Saddleback

To me, that asks the question, “When is a fetus considered human and as such get human rights?” What I hear in that question is, "When does [human] life begin?" For those that are pro-choice a baby and a fetus are different. `Baby’ necessarily means `human’ since a baby exclusively belongs to the category `human’. There are no `babies’ that are not `human’. If the question is, "Do `babies’ have human rights?" - The answer is of course they do because they necessarily belong to the category `human’. If this is the question, it turns out to be a very uninteresting question since it is a necessarily true, logical syllogism:

A is B.
B is C
Therefore: A is C

All babies are human
All humans have human rights
Therefore: All babies have human rights

If real question is, "At what point does a baby get human rights in your view?", it is an insult to Obama’s intelligence since denying it would mean you can not comprehend plain logic (otherwise known as stupid).

Here is the insidious part – you folks on the religious right are really using code to plainly state (for the initiated) – pro-choice people are demons; you are evil because you kill babies and deny them human rights. Those that are pro-choice do not think they are killing babies but your code insists that they are and denies them a response that is something other than believing pro-life OR killing babies. In effect, if you are not pro-life you are a demon. The Saddleback forum was “suppose” to have the appearance of objectivity and fairness but as evidenced in this description, it was a setup – just another opportunity to preach to the choir at the expense of someone with another legitimate point of view. IMO, Republicans have been very successful employing this type of technique. It usually just takes a little thought to show the clay feet on their evil demons.

Posted by: Mark Dreher | August 18, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

It never fails.....there are always excuses as to why Obama did poorly against his opponents. The 3rd debate was all ABC's fault with their terrible questions. And now, Obamanites are sure McCain cheated and knew the questions beforehand because he did seem stronger with his answers.

GIVE ME A BREAK.

Both candidates knew this would be a faith-based forum. I am sure they pretty much had an idea of what questions would be asked, ie abortion, marriage, etc.

It is a known fact McCain stong suit is this type of forum. Obama has not mastered this yet.

This campaign has shown Obama is a great orator and gives thoughtful speeches, however he is not too quick on his feet with impromptu questioning. He needs to practice not saying "hmm" a lot when he is answering....sort of reminds me of Bush.

Posted by: concerned08 | August 18, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

JOHN MCCAIN, TRAITOR TO HIS COUNTRY, COLLABORATOR WITH THE ENEMY, MILITARY DISGRACE.
Ted Sampley, a Vietnam Veteran and former Green Beret, issued a CHALLENGE to John McCain "If you can show us that the information presented in our mailer is untruthful . . . we will Stand Down" This CHALLENGE was issued during an interview with INSIDE EDITION on January 17, 2008.
John, family members of Vietnam POW/MIA(s) have been waiting for more then 14 years for you to have the courage to face them eye to eye in front of the American Public - Here is your opportunity for some "STRAIGHT TALK." Stop hiding behind your fabricated "War Hero" persona. You know we can prove your collaborations with declassified government documents . . . It is time for the American people to get to know the REAL John McCain - the John McCain that the POW/MIA families witnessed during the 1991-93 US Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs .
Bring It On John! HERE IS OUR NUMBER 252-527-0442

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse


Where John Mccain plagiarized his cross in the sand story.

The old man has been telling the BS story he no longer knows if it even actually happened to him or not.
see below:


Along with other prisoners, he worked in the fields day after day, in rain and sun, during summer and winter. His life appeared to be nothing more than backbreaking labor and slow starvation. The intense suffering reduced him to a state of despair.

On one particular day, the hopelessness of his situation became too much for him. He saw no reason to continue his struggle, no reason to keep on living. His life made no difference in the world. So he gave up.

Leaving his shovel on the ground, he slowly walked to a crude bench and sat down. He knew that at any moment a guard would order him to stand up, and when he failed to respond, the guard would beat him to death, probably with his own shovel. He had seen it happen to other prisoners.

As he waited, head down, he felt a presence. Slowly he looked up and saw a skinny old prisoner squat down beside him. The man said nothing. Instead, he used a stick to trace in the dirt the sign of the Cross. The man then got back up and returned to his work.

As Solzhenitsyn stared at the Cross drawn in the dirt his entire perspective changed. He knew he was only one man against the all-powerful Soviet empire. Yet he knew there was something greater than the evil he saw in the prison camp, something greater than the Soviet Union. He knew that hope for all people was represented by that simple Cross. Through the power of the Cross, anything was possible.

Solzhenitsyn slowly rose to his feet, picked up his shovel, and went back to work. Outwardly, nothing had changed. Inside, he had received hope.

So, it is very interesting that Mr. Solzhenitsyn and Mr. McCain had the same Christian guard/prisoner experience. Or maybe it is all just a made up story. Somehow I doubt that Alexander Solzhenitsyn heard John McCain's story and copied it.

This story was actually excerpted from "The Gulag Archipelago" by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, which was released in the US in 1973.

UPDATE X2: It seems that McCain is a bit of a Solzhenitsyn fan, as evidenced in his article in the NY Sun . It leaves little doubt Mccain stole the story from Solzhenitsyn

http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/

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There are reports that McCain's "cross in the dirt" story is suspiciously similar to a story in Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago. This should be looked into, as it would be an important reflection on McCain's values and character.

Posted by: Janice Silverman | August 18, 2008 1:28 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Andrew Sullivan in the Atlantic online provides a very plausible description of the origins of McCain's "cross in the dirt" story:
http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2008/08/the-dirt-in-the.html

Posted by: Janice Silverman | August 18, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

There are reports that McCain's "cross in the dirt" story is suspiciously similar to a story in Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago. This should be looked into, as it would be an important reflection on McCain's values and character.

Posted by: Janice Silverman | August 18, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Of course, it helps as we've now learned that John McSame was not in the "Cone of Silence", but riding in a motorcade to the building where the "Forum" was being held, while Sen. Barack Obama was being questioned. And, during that period of time, there was nothing that prevented John McSame from hearing the questions being asked of Sen. Obama and Sen. Obama's answers thereto. Do I think John McSame "cheated", you bet I do.

Specifically, we learn from the NYT: Before an audience of more than 2,000 people at the church, the candidates answered questions about policy and social issues.

Mr. Warren, the pastor of Saddleback, had assured the audience while he was interviewing Mr. Obama that “we have safely placed Senator McCain in a cone of silence” and that he could not hear the questions.

After Mr. Obama’s interview, he was joined briefly by Mr. McCain, and the candidates shook hands and embraced.

Mr. Warren started by asking Mr. McCain, “Now, my first question: Was the cone of silence comfortable that you were in just now?”

Mr. McCain deadpanned, “I was trying to hear through the wall.”

Interviewed Sunday on CNN, Mr. Warren seemed surprised to learn that Mr. McCain was not in the building during the Obama interview.

See: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/18/us/politics/18mccain.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&adxnnlx=1219068751-He+zpR1dK+Su8nYdzmExoA

Posted by: caliguy55 | August 18, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I am an Obama supporter but that is not accurate, No need for lies on either side.

---------
Can someone please explain how McCain caused a fire on a ship than killed over 200 shipmates?

Posted by: ph | August 18, 2008 12:22 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

i understand that McCain was supposed to be in a room on-site Warren's mega-church. Instead McCain was in his hotel room, probably watching Obama's answers of Warren's questions. This was a clear violation of the ground rules by mcCain.
In the future, Obama must realize that McCain, having no real morality or ethics, must be dealt with as a cheating adversary, and not as a man of honor.

Posted by: tanaS | August 18, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Judge this transcript for yourself.

WARREN: OK. Let’s go to education. America right now ranks 19th in high school graduations. We’re first in incarcerations.

OBAMA: Not good.

WARREN: Not good. 80 percent of Americans recently polled said they believe in merit pay. Now, for teachers, do you - I’m not asking do you think all teachers should get a raise. Do you think better teachers should be paid better? They should be paid more than poor teachers?

OBAMA: I think that we should - and I’ve said this publicly, that we should set up a system of performance pay for teachers, negotiated with teachers, worked with the teachers to figure out the assessments, so that they feel like they’re being judged fairly, it’s not at the whim of the principal. That it’s not simply based on a single high stakes standardized test but the basic notion that teaching is a profession, that teachers are underpaid, so we need to pay them all more, but - and create a higher baseline, but then we should also reward excellence.

WARREN: Reward excellence.

OBAMA: I think that is a concept that all of us should embrace. [ applause ]

[The exchange on education with McCain:]

WARREN: Let’s talk about education. America ranks 19th in high school graduations, but we’re first in incarcerations. Everybody says they want more accountability in schools.

MCCAIN: Um-hum.

WARREN: About 80 percent of America says they support merit pay for the best teachers. Now, I don’t want to hear your stump speech on education.

MCCAIN: Yes, yes, and find bad teachers another line of work. (APPLAUSE).

WARREN: You know, we’re going to end this, you’re answering so quickly. You want to play a game of poker?

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | August 18, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

When people call themselves Christians and want to make claims of who Christ was or represents or His truths are.

They must remember that it is not all about love, it is about justice and grace, that makes Christ so unique. That is taught throughout the scriptures of God's anger against sin in different forms and His grace to redeem those that come to Him.

Socialism/Liberalism defies everything taught in the black book/Bible. First basis of marxism/socialism is that I can do what I want and no one will tell me what to do. That is totally contrary to the scriptures. Hope, life and liberty is acknowledged within the confines of obedience and judgmennt outside of that realm. Only hope can be found in Christian, or Christ.

Posted by: charleydan | August 18, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

If this board is any indication, "divide and conquer" continues to work well for the 2-party (n name only) system. You should join forces and become Americans first, united against the lousy system which has given you just 2 moneyed choices. Your ire is misplaced and that is what was always intended.

Posted by: David | August 18, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Though I did not see the event, looking over the comments I am amazed. First, John Mcain's relationship with God is NOT dependent upon baptism. One responded indicated that since McCain has not been baptized in a Southern Baptist church he cannot be 'saved.' That is NOT a Southern Baptist position. Check your facts.
Second, in regards to the comment abouyt subverting the constitution- the statement in the Bill of Rights never implies a candidate cannot attend a church, answer questions in a church. the statement in the bill of rights is a guarantee that the federal government would in no way support a 'federal' church. Most states in the United States managed to sustain state supported churches until the early 1800's -with no legal claim that they or the taxpayers in those states were undermining the constitution.
In the church I pastor we have held candidate forums- where local and regional candidates are invited to state their positions and answer questions from the audience. In no way did I or my church undermine the consitution. Rather we simply exercised our rights as citizens to be informed voters.

Posted by: Steve Schenewerk | August 18, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Can someone please explain how McCain caused a fire on a ship than killed over 200 shipmates?

Posted by: ph | August 18, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

McCain cheated in the SADDLEBACK FORUM.

Americans are duped once again!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA NEEDS A SPEECH COACH-IMMEDIATELY.

Free lesson, Senator:

FIRST COLLECT YOUR THOUGHT (max of 10 secs)-THEN STATE IT.

"uh....uh....uh.uh......uh"
INDECISIVE/WIMPY/CAN'T GET IT TOGETHER
_____________________

Response:

I don't hear you criticizing McCains physical appearance, big bump on his face, can't lift his arm. So don't criticize the way Obama speaks. Nobody is perfect including you; hiding behind a computer.

I don't care how he got the bump or his arm.

I'm sure you understand these remarks, since it's your style of conversation. You know, low mentality.

When in Rome do as the Romans do.

Obama aced Constitutional Law, he thinks before he speaks. You should try it sometime.

Wimp, cheating, degrading, character assassination Republicans.

"Cheaters"

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I don't hear you criticizing McCains physical appearance, big bump on his face, can't lift his arm. So don't criticize the way Obama speaks. Nobody is perfect including you; hiding behind a computer.

I don't care how he got the bump or his arm.

I'm sure you understand these remarks, since it's your style of conversation. You know, low mentality.

When in Rome do as the Romans do.

Obama aced Constitutional Law, he thinks before he speaks. You should try it sometime.

Wimp, cheating, degrading, character assassination Republicans.

"Cheaters"

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

You can tell by these posts who was raised in a big city and who was raised in a rural area. Big city folks are really brash, rash, and unkind. Rural folks are calm, good listeners, and tend to be kinder to their fellow men.

I like the idea of a generation dedicated to service. So did John Kennedy, although, sadly his own morals were questionable.

I admire both men who seek to become our next President. They both have regrets. Don't we all? They both feel they have something to offer us by their leadership and promise to be good stewards of our ideals.

The problem of partisonship on one hand is good. It's a check and balance of power. On the other hand, it keeps America from reaching her full potential by the constant bickering.

When I go into the voting booth in November, I'm going to ask myself these questions: Which of these 2 men do I think has a proven record of working within his own party and also is able to work with the opposition party? Which of these 2 men is willing to put aside his personal ambition for what is good for me and the other 300 million Americans that live in this great country with us?

If I can figure out a clear cut answer, that is who I will vote for.

I have a working knowledge of IL politics, so I know you don't get elected in IL if you are not a part of the "Chicago Machine" unless you are a Republican. In a way that only a "downstate Illinois" person can relate to, it isn't a good thing that Obama got elected. He owes someone, big time, and I don't know who that someone is.

Dirkson, Douglas and Simon were wonderful Senators from IL and Stevenson was a pretty fair statesman as well. Stevenson was very brainy like Obama, but he couldn't convince the country to NOT like Ike! Seems there is something about a man in uniform.

I felt that McCain's short, crisp, direct answers were just what people wanted. Even though the world is not always black or white, if you spend too much time thinking and talking about the gray area, your gray matter just goes to sleep.

I also get the feeling, that those of you who are drunk on the Obama Koolaid, are trying to suggest that McCain cheated. I thought Obama did fine, but maybe my expectations were not as high as yours. Are we just a nation of whiners after all? (little joke)

Posted by: Karen | August 18, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

McCain's answers reminded me of the currently running "Mighty Dog" TV commercials. Even though I don't believe McCain is a goofy as he sounds I'm still preferring "steady as she goes, while we right the ship" Obama. Our current starboard tack has very nearly taken us down and we've got five months to go; now that's worrisome.

Posted by: Gerald Sutliff, CA, USA | August 18, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Let's not be too quick to declare a winner after Rick Warren's forum. I bet you if you ask the pastor, and he could tell you in a straightforward way his assessment of both men, we would know that McCain did not gain his respect. Pastor Warren has to remind Senator McCain several times to take his time and respond. Not listening to questions, using 2-second pat slogans, repeating narcissistic stories about one's "imprisonment" and then fraternizing are not qualities associated with experience, intelligence and integrity.

I am sure church parishioners may have applauded for the answers they want to hear, but they are also walking away from last night's event with a thought-provoking assessment of the candidate they were prepared to bash. They would also realize that Candidate McCain is not the President they want is they do not want the continuation of an inefficient, lazy, and most of all dumbed down, vacuous four more Bush years.

Posted by: Quan | August 18, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

It was obvious that McCain was comfortable with people of faith.His lightening fast response ,clear answers, and heartfelt answers gave him a huge advantage over OBAMA who did not make a mistake.

Posted by: Charles Hughes | August 18, 2008 10:43 AM
_______________________________
Reply:

Apparently McCain cheated.

Thanks for validating that it appeared McCain did well at the Saddleback Forum.

SADDLEBACK FORUM:

Apparently McCain cheated. I guess he was comfortable as you said. He had a heads-up.

When McCain should have been in the cone or green-room which is secluded and sound- proofed and where he was supposed to be and WAS NOT, because he was in his Limo.

All accounts leads us to believe he was in his Limo on his Blackberry seeing and listening to the show. That is unethical!
And I am ashamed of him.


Hint, hint, hint! Maybe that's the answer you need to hear.

Thumbs down for McCain! That's ch-eatery!


Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse

OBAMA NEEDS A SPEECH COACH-IMMEDIATELY.

Free lesson, Senator:

FIRST COLLECT YOUR THOUGHT (max of 10 secs)-THEN STATE IT.

"uh....uh....uh.uh......uh"
INDECISIVE/WIMPY/CAN'T GET IT TOGETHER

Posted by: mommadona | August 18, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

If you missed Senators McCaint and Obama answering Pastor Rick Warren's questions Saturday night then you missed an opportunity to witness a clear contrast between the old versus the new...and I'm not just talking age.

Stylistically, Senator Obama made you feel as though you were overhearing a very private conversation with a friend or confidant.

While Senator McCaint rarely looked at Pastor Rick. He gave the impression he was giving a stump speech choosing to address the audience.

His posture seemed unnatural almost forced because it wasn't the audience asking the questions.

Regardless of whether you like McCaint or Obama, the contrast couldn't be more clear.

Everything from how they answered the questions, the thought processes that went into each response, the eye contact given to Pastor Rick and the language used to answer the questions.

Barack was very thoughtful, not self righteous, humble and introspective while McCaint was very direct, combative, and simplistic.

When McCaint spoke, he spoke a lot about war - whether it was about
him or about those he thinks are wise (General Petraeus). It makes me nervous not just because we've been at war for several years now but because McCaint seems comfortable with being at war. Those who know me know that

I am not conflict averse. I don't start fights.

On the contrary, I do everything I can not to fight (verbally speaking of course)....but I don't run from a fight either.

I expect nothing less from my president. I want my president to use war as a last resort and I don't think that would be the case with Senator McCaint.

He seems too comfortable with war which on some level is understandable since war has shaped his life on so many levels.

Still, I think McCaint would use a shotgun to kill a gnat! I want my president to see things sometimes through rose colored glasses as opposed to night vision goggles.

Even though he was thoughtful, he didn't talk that much about his tours in Vietnam but when he did he said these words "...those who have never been to war are quick to send others while those who have been, use it as a last resort."

Senator Obama seems to think like a man who has been to war and never wants to send anyone back into harm's way. While Senator McCaint seems to think like a man who has never been to war.

I think a powerful man must be slow to anger because his decisions have a ripple effect which can last for generations.

Another McCaint annoyance for me is his story telling about Vietnam. I know he's a war hero (coming from a military family I respect his sacrifice) and American's like stories but I don't want a story in response to my questions every time.

I want my president to be able to relate to me present day. He should not have to go back 30 or 40 years in order for me to get to know him better.

Lastly, someone in the McCaint camp needs to tell him to stop starting almost every response with "my friends."

It is cheesy, condescending and irritating.

I am not his friend - not because I don't like him but because I don't personally know him. When he says "my friends...it sounds labored, simplistic, condesending, and lastly pathetic"

I feel like I'm in a used car lot about to be fed a line about why the odometer reads 10-thousand miles but the tires are bald and the car is 10 years old.

It makes me not trust him.

Clearly the audience was evangelical-right Saturday night. They have been waiting for a lot of the answers McCaint gave them and when he did they rewarded him with thunderous applause. That's good news for McCaint.

However, the bad news is not all audiences will be evangelical-right. One thing is for sure, both candidates have work to do if they're going to capture independent voters in November.

.......McCaint and his "friends"..how sad

As his own campaign staff has already said:

"...the Candidate does not speak for the Campaign...."

Posted by: AlexP1 | August 18, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Memorable Barack quote from Saddleback;

Uh...uh...aah....(eyes down).....uh

wow. how uncomfortable he was without his telepropmpter. You could see Rick felt sorry for him and tried to help him finish a thought. I felt bad for the guy. No wonder he won't accept Senator McCain's request to meet in several of these forums.

Message to staff:

Get the teleprompter warmed up and running again.

I expect McCain will move ahead in the polls after that specatcle.

Posted by: dano | August 18, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Neither candidate respects the Constitution of the country they say they want to lead. Article VI of the US Constitution states that “no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.” The Saddleback Civil Forum on Presidency (also called a "Forum on Faith") was clearly a religious test and, as such, is undeniably unconstitutional. It's a sad state of affairs when both candidates for the highest office in the land are willing to subvert the Constitution even before being elected. One can only imagine what they would do to the Constitution after being elected. These two are the best candidates the two major Parties can present to "We the People"? It’s also “interesting” that McCain stated that the most important criterion for selecting a Supreme Court justice should be “a proven record of strictly adhering to the Constitution”. He should try practicing what he preaches. And just as these two are Presidential candidates who don’t adhere to Constitutional precepts that they would have to pledge to protect as President, they (and every other Christian who clamors for the public display of their religious principles) don’t adhere to the tenets of their sacred text, the “Word of God”: "When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corner so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. "But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you. [Matthew 6:5-6] So here we have the ridiculous spectacle of two nominally Christian “leaders” willing to ignore both the US Constitution and the Bible.

One last point: The Democrats are once again ineptly allowing the Republicans to define the parameters of the discussion. I realize that Obama had to take part in this “Civil” forum; it would have been political suicide to refuse. But why did he leave it at that? He should have insisted that both candidates would also be required to appear at a forum hosted by Americans for Separation of Church and State or the Freedom from Religion Foundation to delineate how their Christian faith would NOT subvert the Constitution of the United States. I would also like to know if their “faith-based” policies would exclude those Americans who don’t share their religious beliefs. And do they both believe that an American citizen who hasn’t accepted Jesus Christ as his or her personal savior is doomed to eternal torment in hell?

Posted by: Kiraly | August 18, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

A solid 6 to 9 point lead across the board has not really wavered for a long time. This will not even be close. I bet Obama can at least spell Imbecile unlike you, the real Imbecile

----------
It's amazing what an imbicile Barry is without a teleprompter. As he falls in the polls and his intellectual illiteracy becomes more obvious to all but the cool-aide drinkers, I do sleep better these days.
Allowing a radical who is supported by Hamas and Castro anywhere near the White House would be too much for the U.S.
This unacomplished dimwit needs to be beaten and beaten badly.

Posted by: Eric | August 18, 2008 10:59 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

It's amazing what an imbicile Barry is without a teleprompter. As he falls in the polls and his intellectual illiteracy becomes more obvious to all but the cool-aide drinkers, I do sleep better these days.
Allowing a radical who is supported by Hamas and Castro anywhere near the White House would be too much for the U.S.
This unacomplished dimwit needs to be beaten and beaten badly.

Posted by: Eric | August 18, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse


Mccain never let truth get in the way of a good story

McCain cites questionable story on 'evil'
A reader points out that John McCain's example of pure evil yesterday rests on a story asserted by Iraqi officials, but since cast into doubt.

"Not long ago in Baghdad, Al Qaeda took two young women who were mentally disabled and put suicide vests on them, sent them into a marketplace, and by remote control, detonated those suicide vests," McCain told Rick Warren. "If that isn't evil, you have to tell me what is."

The horrifying story that terrorists used two women with Down Syndrome to carry bombs was a sensation in February, but The New York Times later suggested it hadn't happened that way:

Psychiatric case files of two female suicide bombers who killed nearly 100 people in Baghdad this month show that they suffered from depression and schizophrenia but do not contain information indicating they had Down Syndrome, American officials said Wednesday.

In the aftermath of the Feb. 1 bombings — the most devastating attacks in Baghdad since summer — Iraqi officials said that the women had Down syndrome, a genetic disorder. They based their opinion partly on the appearance of the remains of the women, whose heads, as often happens in suicide bombings, were severed by the blasts.

A senior American commander in Baghdad, Maj. Gen. Jeffery W. Hammond, also said there were indications that the women were mentally disabled and were unwitting victims of insurgents.

The information led to reports that Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, a homegrown Sunni extremist group that American officials say is led by foreigners, had been using mentally disabled people as suicide bombers.

But a senior American military spokesman said Wednesday that it remained unclear whether the women had Down syndrome or suffered from any medical condition that would have prevented them from understanding what they were doing.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

It was obvious that McCain was comfortable with people of faith.His lightening fast response ,clear answers, and heartfelt answers gave him a huge advantage over OBAMA who did not make a mistake.

Posted by: Charles Hughes | August 18, 2008 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Finally, we are moving towards a world of sexual justice! Think about John McCain's muffled comment at Saddleback on marriage about supporting civil protections. Now, he didn't quite say civil unions but it was close. Or about the recent votes in Massachusetts or the Supreme Court decision in California -- or the wedding pictured above. There is no question that we are getting closer to marriage equality in this country than we could have dreamed even a decade ago.

Rev. Debra Haffner
http://debrahaffner.blogspot.com

Posted by: Rev. Debra Haffner | August 18, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I think Warren realizes the McCain camp may have even played him.

His genuine thrown expression when he heard that McCain wasn't in the building.

and I am sure as more and more details are coming out he is realizing more and more he may have been played himself.

the funniest thing is...Mccain probably was briefed by his staff as they were heading over...and his answers were still missing any logic explanations behind them.

But that might be because THEY WERE ALMOST ALL 30 second TALKING POINTS taken directly from his stump speeches.,, that he was told to use before he went on stage.

problem is he gave a few of them before the questions came up...oy.

Posted by: dl | August 18, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

The abortion issue would be easy to answer if we all had the same religious beliefs, however, there are those with none and not everyone believes the same. So, it would be difficult for any president to force their religious belief on Americans and ignore a person's right. Given the issues of today it appears McCain is too far out of touch.

Posted by: Vikki-Washington | August 18, 2008 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Wow... Warren said he was in the cone of silence. They even joked about it during McCain's Q&A and McCain never even explained that he wasn't in the "cone of silence" he just pretended he was. They talked about the coin toss before the event.

But McCain wasn't even there. Not for the coin toss. Not for the cone of silence.

What a load of crap!

Posted by: Blip | August 18, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Dano writes "do you understand the cruelty that partial birth abortion is? "

Dano - do you understand the cruelty that cutting off people's limbs is? It's called amputation, and it's a medical procedure that performed quite often, unlike partial birth abortion that is performed rarely, but when deemed necessary by doctors and the patient.

Why are people like you so involved with everyone else's life? Mind your own business, and get your GED for christ's sake so you can start thinking on your own.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 9:46 AM | Report abuse

I often wonder how many people there are who actively contribute to blogs such as this one. After weeks of immersing myself in dozens of posts, I am still fascinated by the dynamic, but flummoxed by the drivel. Although I did not hear the Saddleback meeting between the candidates, I did read their respective answers and came away thinking that the vast majority of voters who did tune in would be very unlikely to change their mind about the candidate based upon what they heard.

I suppose the breakdown in the electorate SHOULD resemble the breakdown in blog threads such as are posted here: About 40% ardently pro-Obama and maybe 30% ardently pro-McCain and another 30% divided between those who, while seeming to lean one way or the other, remain open to being convinced--and those who simply vent their spleens. Basically, what that means is the candidates have only two top priorities--get the vote out and persuade that 10% who appear to be truly open to convincing of the rightness of their respective positions. [The other 20% will undoubtedly fall in line with their posted rantings, having had no effect upon the election except to raise the temperature a little.] What has this to do with the post?

It should be clear that, whether coming from the famously ubiquitous "paid-disinformation trolls" (whose existence, while undoubtedly real, has been grossly exaggerated) or from the passionate "true believers" who NEVER leave any doubt that they know what they think, the posts are uniformly unconvincing and possessing of little if any power to persuade.

Diane from California writes: "Why not admit that no matter how flawed and incompetent Senator Obama is, you [the Obama supporter] have already decided to vote for him because he shares the same views and values that you have, and perhaps because you're Black" Although wrapping her message in a plea for civility that I heartily endorse, she undercuts her argument with rhetoric. Why should ANY voter subscribe to such a statement as hers? If you share the views and values of a particular candidate, of course you are also accepting their flaws (inherent in ALL humans, whether seeking office or not) and finding the messenger still worthy. I find it hard to believe that anyone would long share the views and values of someone they find incompetent however, (our current President notwithstanding) and there is the first part of the writer's problem. The language, coming from someone who admits in the next paragraph that she "shares the same views and values" as John McCain, is heavily loaded against the other. While supporters of Obama "share the views and values DESPITE [obvious] flaws and incompetence, they also are [probably] doing so because he is BLACK! She, a supporter of McCain is DIFFERENT. She shares the views and values of John McCain but no mention of her seeing and accepting flaws or incompetence or of making a choice based upon race.

As I said, the vast majority of voters will not have their minds changed by this meeting. But perhaps the exchange between the candidates will initiate some kind of meaningful debate that will elevate online discussions that stipulate to facts and admit of the possibility of being wrong. Perhaps people who support Obama LIKE his ideas, and have been persuaded that he has the character and the grit to see the job through, despite his limited experience with government. Perhaps people who support McCain also agree with HIS ideas, find Obama's ideas wanting and therefore, will vote for McCain. Here's the rub: Why, if this WERE the case, does McCain only seem to hammer at Obama's experience when, such would not be necessary if McCain really believed he has better ideas? Could it be that even HE finds Obama's ideas appealing?

Posted by: dch | August 18, 2008 9:39 AM | Report abuse

dano

Talk about ill-informed ...
the bible is not a book about abortion...

and Obama is closer to it's teaching than mccain is...period.

that is what young evangelicals are realizing...that your argument has duped them...for too long.

Posted by: dl | August 18, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Re. the cone of silence: Maybe he did, maybe he didn't have an unfair advantage by knowing what the questions and Obama's answers were in advance. But what difference does it make considering so many numbskulls eat up his simplistic answers and stories such as his Hanoi homilies.

No matter that Obama gave more compelling, if complex and nuanced, answers to the same questions. American likes drama in digestible segments, and that's what McCain gave them.

I wrote about this in my column "POW! POW! POW! Take that Obama!" here: http://www.capitolhillblue.com/cont/node/10518

Posted by: Hal Brown | August 18, 2008 9:21 AM | Report abuse

annonymous writes;

...and if you ask me from what I have read...Obama's values are a whole heck of a lot closer to Christ's teachings than Mccain.

A whole HECK of a lot closer.
---------------------------
what an uniformed, ridiculous statement.

do you understand the cruelty that partial birth abortion is? and then you really can make such an outrageous statement. Turn off MSNBC, read how partial birth abortion works, I'll spare you the cruel unbelievable details here. Understand after a little research that barry is a big supporter and has voted to continue this cruel practice, then tell me you stand by that statement about Obama being closer to Christ's teachings.


Posted by: dano | August 18, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

I did not watch the interviews, but I gathered that McCain did better that Obama. Now the news that McCain was not in the "cone of silence". In fact, he was not even in the building at the time! He was in his hotel, and then driving as Obama was being interviewed!

Apparently, the Pastor asked McCain if he watched Obama's interview, and McCain said "no". What the Pastor did not ask - either intentionally or unintentially - is whether McCain's aides were preparing McCain for the interview in the hotel and as he was driving - because the aides were likely watching the interview! That way McCain would have had the full benefit of knowing the questions in advance, and yet have plausible deniability about not watching Obama's interview!

It looks to me like the Christian Right set a trap, and the Democrats and Obama walked right into it with both eyes closed!!!

Posted by: Geonerd | August 18, 2008 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Pastor Rick Warren said John McCain didn’t hear any of the questions in advance at Saturday night’s Civil Forum, even if the candidate was a little late arriving to the pre-arranged quiet room or “cone of silence.”

At the beginning of the forum at California megachurch, Warren told the crowd and TV audience, “I'm going to ask identical questions to each of these candidates, so you can compare apples to apples. Now, Senator Obama is going to go first. We flipped a coin, and we have safely placed Senator McCain in a cone of silence.”

But at 8 p.m. ET, as Warren said that, McCain was actually not in the building. He was just leaving his hotel, with his motorcade arriving at the church nearly a half hour into the event. A. Larry Ross, a spokesman for Warren, says McCain then went directly into the holding room they dubbed the “cone of silence” (in reality, a room with no TV or audio).

Some questioned whether that late arrival might have allowed McCain to hear some of the questions being first posed to Obama.

Warren told CNN Sunday evening, “we flat out asked him” if he heard any of the questions. The McCain campaign “confirmed that McCain did not hear or see any of the broadcast” in the motorcade or after he arrived, Ross said.

When asked if McCain overheard anything, Charlie Black, a McCain adviser who was with him at the time, told CNN: "We were in motorcade until 5:30 p.m. ET; then a holding room in another building with no TV."

Warren said, “I trust the integrity of both” candidates, and said he “knew they would abide by the rules.” He joked McCain may not have been in the cone of silence, but “he was in the cone of a Secret Service motorcade”.

Ross says the whole event only came about because of the relationship Warren has with both men. He said they all agreed to assure a “level field, “McCain would not hear the questions or Senator Obama’s answers.” The pastor spoke to each candidate this week, giving the general themes. Warren decided to tell them each the first two questions in advance, about the three wisest people you know, and the biggest moral failings.

For their part, an Obama spokesperson told CNN’s Mike Roselli they are not pursuing whether McCain heard any of the other questions. They say they assuming McCain had the same information they did.
====================================================================================

...so let me grt this correctly....McCaint had lost the "coin toss"....was 30 minutes late to a "live" broadcast...has his campaign staff by his side the "entire" time...and was never in the so called "cone of silence"......Nice......

More lies, more slogans, more deceit, more pandering, more talking points, more of the same RNC/GOP card holder crapola....

"Mr Friends"

"....The Candidate does not speak for the Campaign..."

Posted by: AlexP1 | August 18, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Hey guys,
Obama said, if you as a family make 150.000 OR LESS, then you're middle class. He didn't say 150.000 or more!!!

Listen to the video at msnbc
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/22886841#26243091
it's at 20 minutes.

Posted by: Aron | August 18, 2008 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Diana in California

I am not black, not Obama's age and not mcCain's (in my late 30's)

and I agree with Obama's values (along with a majority of Americans)

As a christian you can use that to decide your decisions on the law...but it does not give you the right to decide the law (neither does it me)

...It is that I am an American that gives me the right to decide the law...not my religion.

We as a country were founded out of that premise of religious freedom. As much as those on the other side try to spin it the other way.

...and if you ask me from what I have read...Obama's values are a whole heck of a lot closer to Christ's teachings than Mccain.

A whole HECK of a lot closer.

unless you boil down the Bible to a big thick book all about homosexuality and a very debated argument about when life begins.

Unfortunately some people aren't really looking at how important the whole teachings are not 2 very debated issues.

If Christ were alive my guess is he would be a heck of a lot closer to liberals thean some of these guys on TV that are calling themselves Christian conservatives. What was the line about priests and pharisees? Listen to what they say but...

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Obama the Waffler writes:
"Obama is telegraphing his tax raise. This wasn't exactly unexpected".

Well, I suppose you COULD look at it that way. But I see it totally differently. I see his comments, actions, and legislative efforts to date as some of the most honest efforts to return America to Americans -- to the majority of Americans, and wrest control from the elite, wealthy, and well-connected -- to enable our Federal Governmnet to stop spending our children's and grandchildren's tax dollars before they have even been earned!

In the past 28 years, ~=27 of those years we have seen an increase in our national debt. Only in the last year of Clinton's Presidency did we see a surplus, and 8 years later, instead of an $80B surplus we have a $482B deficit!

McCain talks about cutting wasteful spending AND cutting taxes at the same time. He's an economic (oxy)moron when it comes to understanding a budget!

Nearly all professional politicians talk about "wasteful spending" and lots of less than intelligent voters buy into that mantra, as though he could single handidly trim the fat. Notice, however, that he sees no fat in the Pentagon budget, or in giving more tax breaks to corporations, the rich, wealthy, and well-connected.

We need to put the breaks on this Republican juggernaut that spends money like drunken sailors. The ONLY candidate in the race that has even a prayer of reversing this trend is Barack Obama. His focus on shining a bright light on Washington through USASpending.gov is exactly what is needed, as are the ethics and lobbyist reforms he co-authored.

McCain wouldn't be intolerable, but when we can do so much better by electing a really intelligent guy, who is thoughtful, reflective, readily admits that he doesn't know all the answers (that God is actually smarter than he), we just need to do this and give the "new guy" a chance.

Our elders in Washington have failed us, time and time again. It's time for change, and Obama's reasoned approach to governance is a breath of fresh air in a government filled with the stench of corruption. Time to throw the bumbs out.

Obama '08/'12

Posted by: Andrew L. - Des Moines | August 18, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Apparently McCain thinks he is somewhere in the middle class, judging from his tax returns. Any paupers out there that really want this mindset occupying the White House after the last bunch that thought the people at the Super Dome were better off than they were in their pre-Katrina homes? More (worse) of the same, say I.

Posted by: madisonhack | August 18, 2008 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Nothing is wrong with working at Walmart - but something is wrong with your thinking ability if you don't realize that working your way through Harvard and becoming a Senator is a rare and significant accomplishment. Why twist things around, I've worked as hard or harder than anybody, and if all you can do is knock down hard working people - then you're the elitist dummy.

Posted by: Bob | August 18, 2008 8:21 AM | Report abuse

To NinaK and all Obama supporters: With all due respect most of you Obama supporters sound like paid bloggers by Senator Obama's campaign. Why not admit that no matter how flawed and incompetent Senator Obama is, you have already decided to vote for him because he shares the same views and values that you have, and perhaps because you're Black. There is nothing wrong with more than 90% Blacks voting for Senator Obama because of his race, I understand it's a sense of pride, but don't blind yourselves that Senator Obama is qualified, has the experience, knowledge and judgment to be President of this great nation. Senator Obama should have waited a few years, cleaned his closet and paid his dues before running for President.

I'll admit that I have already decided to vote for Senator McCain no matter what, because his views and values are closer to mine than to Senator Obama. Also, I'm the same age as Senator Obama, and I can tell you that having served in the U.S. Air Force for 23 years I can somewhat relate to Senator McCain. I, like the majority of practicing Christians believe that life begins at conception, as well as marriage to be between one man and one woman, and we would not have attended a racist church for twenty years. Let us not forget that regardless of party affiliation we are all Americans, and we can have a respectful debate without name calling, being rude to our fellow Americans. No matter who is elected we as Americans need to respect the outcome of this Presidential election, and support the newly elected President. May God bless us all, the U.S. and the rest of the world!

Posted by: Diana in California | August 18, 2008 5:27 AM | Report abuse

NinaK, you correctly state the middle class brackets "The middle class is broken into three parts: UPPER MIDDLECLASS, MIDDLE CLASS, LOWER MIDDLE CLASS. Then you have the POOR and the VERY POOR" but there are varying degrees of poor and rich as well. Many Native American peoples live below standards that most Americans classify as 3rd world while many poor people have microwaves, cable TV, and a car. Also there is a difference between a small business owner, a manager of a medium sized regional business and a CEO for a fortune 500 company. The truth of the matter is there are varying degrees of prosperity on the scale.
Destitute, Poverty level, Poor, Lower Middle Class, Middle Class, Upper Middle Class, Upper Class, Wealthy, Independantly Wealthy, Rich, and Super Rich. Again, net income available beyond basic need fulfillment is the measure for prosperity.

Does this mean a small business owner who re-invests 100% of his profits into his business and lives like a Lower Middle Class person but has a net worth of $4 Million tied up in his business is Middle Class, Upper Middle Class, or Upper Class? It does not matter what he has or owes, by virtue of employing others, owning a business, and the overhead of that business he is Upper Class because he is able to provide for more then his family many time over, enough to employ others. While most Americans will not agree with this assesment it is true because the rest of the world lives in this reality. Americans are spoiled into the entitlement mentality preached by TV, Ad Executives, Movies, Magazines, and natural competitive nature. Go to rural areas outside of the US, even in places in Central and Eastern Europe and you will see what poverty is, not what we call it.

Taxes are a part of being sucessful. The more you earn, the more you owe. If a man making $20k per year owes nothing then the man making $40k, the one making 80k, and the one making 160K, and the one making $320k have to pay for his refund, kids education, roads, hospitals, police, national defense, government programs for the poor, and government run costs. They SHOULD do this on a graduating scale but at the same time, we should not penalize people for becomming wealthy as our society is a market society that holds wealth as the ideal. Wealthy people have the responsibility to society to reinvest their earnings into more businesses, taxes, and incentives to foster more prosperity.

Taxes should not be too much of a burden or else people will quite suceeding and more will wnat to stay in areas to receive entitlements because they are easier to get, placing more burden on the very ones everyone sayes is paying too much. If only the top 5% makes above $150 per year then tax cuts should not be offered to people making above this level, then the tax cuts can go to the people making below $50k per year and those in the middle would have nutural tax as they are the majority of Americans and where 1/2 the tax income should come from, then the other 1/2 comes from the ones making more then $150k per year. This way the whole of tax income comes from 1/2 by the average American family, the other half from the "rich" as defined by the numbers you and others have provided.

Posted by: Johhny Bravo | August 18, 2008 5:15 AM | Report abuse

Obama really only answered two of the questions asked him that night. His "intelligent" and "thoughtful" answers did little but skirt around the questions that he had no idea how to answer. He made very little eye contact with Warren or the audience and was constantly looking down at the ground before answering questions. The man seems incredibly young and inexperienced when he is without a teleprompter.

Posted by: Charlie | August 18, 2008 4:59 AM | Report abuse

All scientific textbooks on embryology agree with the bible in that human life begins at conception. see http://www.abort73.com/HTML/I-A-1-medical.html
So there is no question from a theological or scientific perspective. Obama even opposed legislation requiring care for a born infant that survived a botched abortion. So regardless of when life starts Obama does not care about protecting innocent life.

Baptists believe people are saved by grace through faith. Baptism is a symbol or outward expression of an existing faith. Followers of Jesus Christ have recognized and admitted separation from God by disobediance. They turn from living by their own rules and commit to following God's plan. Believe Jesus died to pay the price for your wrongdoing/breaking the 10 commandments and receive forgiveness. Commit by act of will and heart to trust him and follow him. Put him in the pilot seat of your life. Then be baptized because he commanded it and do it the way he did it - by submersion. Baptism is from Greek baptizo which means submersion or immerse.

Posted by: erik | August 18, 2008 4:30 AM | Report abuse

(CORRECTED VERSION)
Would someone please give both candidates some basic US Census figures on income and net wealth? Median family income in the US is around the $50,000/year level- that is of course lower than the mean, for you cannot make less than zero but some few make many many millions. An income of $150,000/year puts you into the top few per cent of Americans. It is like saying that someone who is six foot three and weighs 275 pounds is "average size." As for McCain's 5 million figure, that is like saying that Kobe Bryant is of middling height.

According to the most recent US Census figures I have seen, in order to make it into the top 20% of Americans in net wealth- not income- you need only have assets of about $180,000. That includes home equity, savings, personal property, and pensions.

Obama calling an income of $150,000 a year "middle class" means that the middle includes people in the top 5% in income. McCain's answer is almost literally incredible- that neither one is called on their definitions of "middle class" and "wealthy" is an indication of how few people bother to look at basic figures before blathering.

This country would be well served if both sides were called to task for their extraordinary lack of understanding of income and wealth levels in the US.

Posted by: Appalled
-------------------
Appalled, $180,000 is $30,000 more than $150,000. In today's world a lot more people are making that kind of money and ARE considered middle class. An average house today costs About $400,000 to $500,000 depending where you live. If you live in California or New York that same house will be much more. I bought my house in 1973 for $32,500; today it is worth $300,000+, I live in Lakewood WA. The new houses are selling in the $400,000-to $500,000 range and that's in the upper middle class. I thank God I bought my house when I could afford it at payments of $400.00 a month. I am retired now and simply couldn't afford my own house now if I were to try and buy it today. The $150,000 yearly income falls into the UPPER middleclass. Then we have the middle class, and the lower middle class. I think at $30-50K one falls into the lower middle class and you can still afford to buy a nice house at $150.000 - $200.000. One would still have to sacrifice some things though.

McCain's wealthiness and elitism were exhibited last night when he said $5 Million is wealthy. Yes, I can imagine he would think so, considering he and Cindy are worth over $100 Million, then they have those 10 upscale houses and condos which are worth millions and millions more, no wonder Cindy can afford to run up her credit cards $250.000 a month!! Imagine what the rest of us could do with that money!! McCain is definitely out of touch with reality, the newer generations, this century, and the new technologies. Heck, he is out of touch with the rest of the world as well, he believes Pakistan borders Iraq when in fact it borders Afghanistan He should KNOW this as our troops are fighting in both Afghanistan and Iraq!! God help us all if he should get elected and decided to "bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" and "bombed, bombed, bombed, bombed" Pakistan instead!! McCain does not know Chechoslovakia has not been a country sine l992. McCain does not know the differences between the different factions in Iraq. McCain thought Mr. Putin was the President of Germany, and on and on and on! He says he knows the president of Georgia very well and is in daily talks with him, yet cannot pronounce his name correctly!! Wouldn't you think that if McCain is such a friend to Georgia's president that he could at least pronounce his name correctly? By the way, why is McCain talking to this president daily....isn't that Mr. Bush' job??

Do you all remember when Mr. Black stated that if we had another terrorist attack on U.S. soil that IT WOULD BENEFIT JOHN McCAIN?? When McCain said and says that he talks to Georgia's president daily, I cannot help but wonder if McCain and Mr. Black somehow made arrangements with this president to attack its small neighboring countries (hoping Russia would not react) to BENEFIT JOHN McCAIN in his quest for the presidency. Doesn't McCain have a lobbyistin his staff who lobbied for Georgia? IF Georgia's president and McCain are such dear and close friends, it only makes sense that Georgia would want McCain to win the presidency....then Georgia could really exploit the USA for all kinds of additional assistance and whatever else they need because "his buddy", John McCain would be at the helm and in a position to approve his requests. Think about it folks, this is a BIG possibility, funny that all this has happened just weeks before the conventions! Somebody in power, besides the Republicans, should investigate this! As much as McCain lies about everything else, I do not put anything past him!! I mean, really, he did not object to the possibility of being attacked within our shores when Mr. Black made the remark!! Anything to benefit McCain is okay with McCain!!

Posted by: NinaK | August 18, 2008 4:11 AM | Report abuse

To all of you who are believing Obama being an american citizen...it has been proven that the birth certificate is a fake. http://tiny.cc/Dx2Bo

And to you questioning McCain being born in Panama....Did you learn anything in history class? He was born to two americans thus making him a natural born citizen.

Posted by: Mary
---------------
Mary I enjoyed history classes, however I do not recall anything about McCain being born to two Americans making him a natural born citizen. History has much, much more historical facts to write about than Who McCain was born to or where he was born. Actually, it seems like you are the only one that has taken a history class that discussed McCain, his parents and where he was born. While this may be true, I am sure it has not been included in any formal history books.

As for your comments on Senator Obama's Birth Certificate, you keep spouting the same UNTRUTHS in all the blogs. You must stay awake all night worrying about this Birth Certificate. You must be extremely bored with your life. :)

Posted by: NinaK | August 18, 2008 4:01 AM | Report abuse

I cannot believe how many PAID O'bots have infiltrated this blog already posing as "unbiased" democrats and also God-fearing "Christians."

What an obvious joke that Obama's campaign has to resort to such petty propaganda. It is SO EVIDENT it is HILARIOUS! You kids need to hit the hay--it's way past your bedtime on the east coast!

Posted by: Lifetime Dem Voting for McCain | August 18, 2008 3:36 AM | Report abuse

According to Obama 1.5% of American households are wealthy (>$250K per year) and 4.34% of American households are middle class ($150K - $250K). That makes just less than 95% of us poor. I thought middle class meant the middle?

Posted by: muD
--------------
muD, The middle class is broken into three parts: UPPER MIDDLECLASS, MIDDLE CLASS, LOWER MIDDLE CLASS. Then you have the POOR and the VERY POOR. So, at today's earnings it is reasonable the UPPER Class would make between $100K to $250K in one year. The middleclass would probably fall at between $60K and $100K, and the lower middleclass between $30K and $60K. Anything under $30K is not much money on which to raise a family, so I would say that falls under borderline poverty. Then we get to the $20K yearly income and below and we are definitely in trouble! I do not know how young couples with two or three children make it these days.

Posted by: NinaK | August 18, 2008 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Time to "Swift Boat" McCains life as a POW. Let the truth begin, Sign of cross in the sand, who's story is that anyway? Was he in the cone of silence? Rick Warren as a man of God it is shameful, vile, detestable action on your part, You have just spat on your flock of born again Christians who depend on you. It is a despicable, contemptable, detestable act. Now we know what you mean by the "Purpose Driven..."

Posted by: Raraseal | August 18, 2008 3:27 AM | Report abuse

McCain stated he was kidding about the $5 Million remark, yet all the liberals like to jump on it just as the conservatives have on the Obama non-answer about when life starts. The debate was a draw, it showed the strengths and weaknesses of both candidates and will do little to sway the true independent "on the fense" crowd. Those leaning one way or the other will have seen more of what they wanted to.

The issue of Wealth in America is one that really needs defining to shut everyone up! If you make 2 or more times poverty level for each adult in the house hold you are middle class. If you are in debt because you miss-managed your net income it is not a political issue people! People who can afford high speed internet, cable TV, and full coverage car insurance after the car is paid off are middle class regardless if they live in a home or not. Home ownership, investments, and "locked" assets do not guage wealth, disposable net income after basic needs are met does. A single man making $500k a year can be in debt and living like a pauper if he miss-managed his assets, does this make him poor? Net income after meeting the 5 basic needs measures wealth, all else are creature comforts we get to make ourselves feel better. If we over extend, borrow too much from the future, buy wants over needs, then we end up with people with 6 figure incomes getting foreclosed on and filling for bankruptcy. If they were smart they would live within their means and class structure and be happy, not fall down the economic ladder into the same class as people who make 1/10th or less then they do. Its not what you have or own, its what you can get with what is left over after paying for food, shelter, family, community, and future. All else is a waste.

I live and work in communists China and have learned that our way of measuring wealth is not correct or able to properly guage what we have to do to resolve our economic issues. We live in an inflated society image ran economics according to the rest of the world. Right or wrong this is the reality we live in where a Billion plus Chinese, Indians, South Americans, and Africans are all willing, able, and hungry to take our work and wealth because we are too darned ignorant to realize the global inflation we see is our own making. We can no longer afford to compete against these emerging nations, yet we keep trying. For every UAW worker in the US making cars there are 50 doing the same work in China, with higher productivity and soon higher quality. We have to deflate our costs to compete or else we will price ourselves out of the global marketplace and become the first nation to fall from industrial to 4th world in world history.

Posted by: Johhny Bravo | August 18, 2008 3:27 AM | Report abuse

NYT reports "McCain was not in cube of silence". This is so typical of the lies the Christians including Rick Warren feeds us Americans. This is similar to the lies the Mullahs feed the Islamic fascists. This is the same lies the Bush mad men have fed us for 8 years. Who do you trust? Rick Warren should be ashamed for misleading us. This man is another lying beast looking out for his pockets. O God Help America, beware the false prophets.

Posted by: Raraseal | August 18, 2008 2:57 AM | Report abuse

Dennis Fisher wrote:

"McCain was clearly at this best during this forum. I am grateful that he unashamedly expressed his Christian views."

And he can do it without once mentioning the name of the author of our faith, Jesus Christ. He was even in a church. If he cannot mention Jesus' name in church, then when will he mention it? I, for one, cannot talk about my Christian faith without mentioning Jesus by name. I mentioned this fact to some of my conservative friends at church today and they were embarrassed. They were absolutely quiet. The cause of Jesus was not advanced by McCain last night.

Posted by: Earl
---------------
Earl, McCain was just spewing what he thought the audience wanted to hear. McCain has no respect for our Creator (God), Jesus Christ (The Messiah), or Moses, who was chosen to lead the Isreaelites of bondage. He ran an AD in which he MOCKED all three entities to MOCK Senator Obama. It is no surprise McCain did not Call Jesus by name, I do not believe McCain is truly a person of faith, he is too full of himself and according to him, he is the ONLY one who can get things done. Heck he claims to KNOW how to FIND Bid Ladin, and to KNOW how to get him!! The media needs to take him to task on this; IF McCain KNOWS how to find and how to get Bin Ladin, WHY didn't he share his MUCH NEEDED "WISDOM" and "KNOWLEDGE WITH ALL THE GENERALS THAT HAVE BEEN AND ARE NOW ASSIGNED TO Afghanistan??? The TRUTH is McCain does NOT know how to find or how to get Bin Ladin, anymore than he KNOWS how to "win wars" There again, WHY didn't he share his "great and unsurpassed" knowledge of winning wars with the generals in both Afghanistan and Iraq?? McCain is once again lying to Amrican citizens.

I have a question for McCain, when you are in solitary confinement, doesn't that mean you are in a cell by yourself and away from the the rest of the prisoners?? You say you were in solitary confinement, yet you say there three prisoners to cell? I don't think that is solitary confinement. Another WHOPPER on McCain's part.

Posted by: NinaK | August 18, 2008 2:35 AM | Report abuse

Someone should take Warren to task for allowing McCain to stomp all over him and his questions. 'Can I tell a little story' seemed to be McCain's strategy for getting back to spouting his generic stump rhetoric. The author states the audience didn't seem fazed by this. If course not...you have a bunch of religious sheep who can't think critically or independently. Warren kept Obama on a short leash but certainly let McCain run rabid.
McCain's views seemed tied to seeing things as black or white. Obama seemed intellectual and well reasoned in his answers offering black and white but recognizing most of life is often lived in the shade of gray. McCain seemed to offer fear and war rhetoric.
Sadly, Warren let many people down.

Posted by: jeff | August 18, 2008 2:34 AM | Report abuse

Would someone please give both candidates some basic US Census figures on income and net wealth? Median family income in the US is around the $50,000/year level- that is of course lower than the mean, for you cannot make less than zero but some few make many many millions. An income of $150,000/year puts you into the top few per cent of Americans. It is like saying that someone who is six foot three and weighs 275 pounds is "average size." As for McCain's 5 million figure, that is like saying that Kobe Bryant is of middling height.

According to the most recent US Census figures I have seen, in order to make it into the top 20% of Americans in net wealth- not income- you need only have assets of about $180,000. That includes home equity, savings, personal property, and pensions.

Obama calling an income of $150,000 a year "middle class" means that the middle includes people in the top 5% in income. McCain's answer is almost literally incredible- that neither one is called on their definitions of "middle class" and "wealthy" is an indication of how few people bother to look at basic figures before blathering.

This country would be well served if both sides were called to task for their extraordinary lack of understanding of income and wealth levels in the US.

Posted by: Appalled
-------------------
Appalled, $180,000 is $30,000 more than $150,000. In today's world a lot more people are making that kind of money and ARE considered middle class. An average house today costs About $400,000 to $500,000 depending where you live. If you live in California or New York that same house will be much more. I bought my house in 1973 for $32,500; today it is worth $300,000+, I live in Lakewood WA. The new houses are selling in the $400,000-to $500,000 range and that's in the upper middle class. I thank God I bought my house when I could afford it at payments of $400.00 a month. I am retired now and simply couldn't afford my own house now if I were to try and buy it today. The $150,000 yearly income falls into the UPPER middleclass. Then we have the middle class, and the lower middle class. I think at $30-50K one falls into the lower middle class and you can still afford to buy a nice house at $150.00 - $200.00. One would still have to sacrifice somethings though.

McCain's wealthiness and elitism were exhibited last night when he said $5 Million is wealthy. Yes, I can imagine he would think so, considering he and Cindy are worth over $100 Million, then they have those 10 upscale houses and condos which are worth millions and millions more, no wonder Cindy can afford to run up her credit cards $250.000 a month!! Imagine what the rest of us could do with that money!! McCain is definitely out of touch with reality, the newer generations, this century, and the new technologies. Heck, he is out of touch with the rest of the world as well, he believes Pakistan borders Iraq when in fact it borders Afghanistan He should KNOW this as our troops are fighting in both Afghanistan and Iraq!! God help us all if he should get elected and decided to "bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" and "bombed, bombed, bombed, bombed" Pakistan instead!! McCain does not know Chechoslovakia has not been a country sine l992. McCain does not know the differences between the different factions in Iraq. McCain thought Mr. Putin was the President of Germany, and on and on and on! He says he knows the president of Georgia very well and is in daily talks with him, yet cannot pronounce his name correctly!! Wouldn't you think that if McCain is such a friend to Georgia's president that he could at least pronounce his name correctly? By the way, why is McCain talking to this president daily....isn't that Mr. Bush' job??

Do you all remember when Mr. Black stated that if we had another terrorist attack on U.S. soil that IT WOULD BENEFIT JOHN McCAIN?? When McCain said and says that he talks to Georgia's president daily, I cannot help but wonder if McCain and Mr. Black somehow made arrangements with this president to attack its small neighboring countries (hoping Russia would not react) to BENEFIT JOHN McCAIN in his quest for the presidency. Doesn't McCain have a lobbyistin his staff who lobbied for Georgia? IF Georgia's president and McCain are such dear and close friends, it only makes sense that Georgia would want McCain to win the presidency....then Georgia could really exploit the USA for all kinds of additional assistance and whatever else they need because "his buddy", John McCain would be at the helm and in a position to approve his requests. Think about it folks, this is a BIG possibility, funny that all this has happened just weeks before the conventions! Somebody in power, besides the Republicans, should investigate this! As much as McCain lies about everything else, I do not put anything past him!! I mean, really, he did not object to the possibility of being attacked within our shores when Mr. Black made the remark!! Anything to benefit McCain is okay with McCain!!

Posted by: NinaK | August 18, 2008 2:00 AM | Report abuse

All and all the intensity of this campaign is on. The gloves are off and it will only get tougher moving forward. On the live online realtime poll at http://www.bop-o-rama.com the bop-o-meter will be spinning. The daily Gallup was dead even on Friday. How will it be on Monday. These two candidates are going to be locked in a major mud slinging campaign for weeks to come. We may all wish that another candidate gets her chance to paint it PINK!

Posted by: acarponzo | August 18, 2008 1:17 AM | Report abuse

You just gave a very good answer to a person who is just a simpleton. You cast pearls before swine.

-----------
John H. wrote: "How could answering this most serious question dealing with "life" of a fetus be above BHO’s pay grade?"

Obama said, "from a theological or scientific standpoint." Obama is neither God, nor a scientist. The question of when life begins is therefore higher than him. He is expressing due humility with a complex, existential question, admitting he is a politician, not an oracle of some sort.

Now, I know a lot of people feel very comfortable with their decision on this issue, but there is no denying that people well informed in the science and/or the theology of the issue cannot settle on a single definitive answer that is convincing to the majority of people. There are strong opinions, but no consensus here. When life begins remains a mystery that only faith can answer. Obama's response shows due respect to that mystery and humility about his role in determining it.

Posted by: drossless | August 18, 2008 1:01 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 1:09 AM | Report abuse

John H. wrote: "How could answering this most serious question dealing with "life" of a fetus be above BHO’s pay grade?"

Obama said, "from a theological or scientific standpoint." Obama is neither God, nor a scientist. The question of when life begins is therefore higher than him. He is expressing due humility with a complex, existential question, admitting he is a politician, not an oracle of some sort.

Now, I know a lot of people feel very comfortable with their decision on this issue, but there is no denying that people well informed in the science and/or the theology of the issue cannot settle on a single definitive answer that is convincing to the majority of people. There are strong opinions, but no consensus here. When life begins remains a mystery that only faith can answer. Obama's response shows due respect to that mystery and humility about his role in determining it.

Posted by: drossless | August 18, 2008 1:01 AM | Report abuse

You're in my prayers, Tre. I wish you all the best.

Posted by: Paul | August 18, 2008 12:57 AM | Report abuse

The pundits are ridiculous. Some flap has been made about the difference between Obama and McCains response on "does evil exist." And somehow McCain's opinion that evil equals radical Islam is getting good reviews!

We can not have another President that can not grasp the bigger picture. Someone should skewer McCain on the narrowness of his response. Is the only evil in the world Osama Bin Laden and his friends? What about Putin--- people don't like him now? What about Darfur? What about the drug dealer down the street?

Does McCain realize that the world is bigger than his Senate office? Evil is confronted everyday by millions of Americans in different ways, but the only evil McCain can speak of is that which involves occupying Iraq longer.

Posted by: Chris Stewart | August 18, 2008 12:55 AM | Report abuse

Who would Jesus vote for? I think Obama not the cheating McCain. I started voting for Dems since 1996 because abortion rate fell during Clinton's term. Social programs and education are more inportant in preventing abortions. Republicans and President Bush are not really pro-life because they have no qualms about starting unnecessary war and losing 4500 young American lives to make Haliburton and Oil companies rich.

Posted by: mka | August 18, 2008 12:54 AM | Report abuse

Socrates wrote: "All liberal democratic kooks are either socialists or communists."

Do you have any idea how ignorant you sound?

Ironic name, given that Socrates' first lesson was that "All that we know is that we know nothing," whereas you apparently espouse a theory that knowing nothing is sufficient.

Posted by: drossless | August 18, 2008 12:53 AM | Report abuse

Clever, socrates. Stupid and transparent, but, oh, such a nice try.

What are you? 12?

Posted by: Sally | August 18, 2008 12:50 AM | Report abuse

All liberal democratic kooks are either socialists or communists. Therefore, the are harpies and simply don't know which way the knob turns.
They want higher taxes, more government interference in our lives, appeasement of our enemies, legisltation from the courts, killing of innocent babies, an "in your face" gay agenda, and a complete takeover of our schools and media. They will not be content until our country is taken over by the Muslims or the Commnists. Then, see how much they will be able to spout off their anti-government slogans. The free speech that they are trying to stamp out from the conservatives will also be stamped out for them and their head will be cut off if they do not submit to Allah. Our just God will seek vengeance on the godless liberals and smite them. Make no mistake about it.

Posted by: socrates | August 18, 2008 12:45 AM | Report abuse

P.S. to the person who said a $250,000/year income is not rich: I earned less than $20,000 last year, and I will be lucky if I make 12,000 this year. While technically that is above or possibly right at the poverty line, it sure isn't a heck of a lot of money, especially when fighting a disease like cancer. I do not own a home, my spouse and I are making payments on 2 cars and are going to have to give one of them up because I have been forced into disability. we have taken a grand total of 2 trips away from home in the last 6 years - the first we were gone for 2 days to get married, and the 2nd we were gone overnight about 400 miles down the road to a neighboring state. Both times we spent less than $300. At times I have worked 3 jobs and my spouse has worked 2 jobs just so we could make ends meet. So to the person who makes close to $250,000/ year, who earns 10 - 20 times what I earn, I ask: do you own your own home? Are your cars paid off? Do you worry about health insurance for yourself and your family? How many vacations have you taken in the past 6 years, where did you go - how much money did you spend? Do you agonize over which bill to pay, or whether you should pay the electric bill or use that money to buy food or medicine? Do you have a spa membership? How many times a month do you eat out, and what is the average tab for your family? How much money is in your bank account? (no, I do not really expect you to answer - just asking) If you were to die tomorrow, would your spouse have to borrow money to give you the very cheapest of cremations (and still not be able to afford an urn?) Do you realize that you probably pay more in income tax than I earn? (and if you don't it's because you can afford to hire someone to get you out of paying that much tax?) Do you have to stop and think before you buy a cup of coffee, for fear spending the $1.29 will put your checking account in the red? Just really no equity between your answers and mine, is there now? And I have it better than a lot of other people - at least I AM able to rent an apartment, and have transportation , and even if only for a few weeks longer, health insurance. I don't dig thru dumpsters for food, and depend upon the charity of others to stay warm in the wintertime. By comparison, I think you are very rich, and believe me, so do hundreds of thousands if not millions of other Americans.

Posted by: Tre | August 18, 2008 12:41 AM | Report abuse

Dick Cheney probably gave him the questions and Karl Rove called him with the answers. Ya right. The guy wouldn't leave a prison cell, yet you think he's got his ear plastered to a radio. You all are watching to much CNN, MSNBC because all they show is Obama. You gotta get out a bit and find out that this is what McCain does EVERY day. he can handle any question thrown at him. Barack is a teleprompter reader. That's why he's running from doing these formats with McCain, becuase he's clearly out matched and mumbles and rumbles.

As the days go one it becomes more and more apparent that Mr. Obama is in way over his head.

Posted by: dano | August 18, 2008 12:31 AM | Report abuse

Hellen, yes. Absolutely. A person who is a liar doesn't lie all the time about everything. A killer doesn't kill everyone he meets. No. Instead, liars tell the truth MOST of the time, in order to be able to slip a whopper in unexpectedly. They rely on the perception of their reputation to tell the truth in order to get the lie past people. And to be considered a killer, it's only necessary to do it once.

Same as a cheater. If McCain's "principles" allow him to cheat on the most important person in his life when he feels it's in his interest, he can never be trusted. Saturday night was just one more example from a man who has gone through stop signs and red lights so frequently and without consequences that he's begun to think that it's his right to do so.

You're done, John McCain. Your arrogance and the idiocy of your sycophant handlers have done you in. Finally.

Posted by: Howard | August 18, 2008 12:31 AM | Report abuse

Obama answered the questions with the mind of a scientist. McCain just said the regular cliche BS that the Christians wanted to hear. I'm voting for Obama.

Posted by: JM | August 18, 2008 12:31 AM | Report abuse

It dose'nt matter who McCain picks after he just got finished lying and cheating within the house of GOD!! How dare he. He was asked flat out how his room of silence was, in which he replied "I was trying to hear through the walls"... Ha Ha funny man, to bad you weren't even in the building sitting comfortably in your motorcade listening to the whole darn thing!!!!! How dare he indeed.

Posted by: eric | August 18, 2008 12:31 AM | Report abuse

It was clear from the forum that McCain is VERY trigger-happy. Every response he gave had something to do with WAR. Is that all that matters to the American people? Is that all we care about? War?

Posted by: TAL | August 18, 2008 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Mayo makes an interesting point, a useful one even. The ad hominems aside, the essential theme of his post is that he judges that Mr. Obama lost the debate on Saturday night. And, let's face it, he's right.

However, "losing" when the other side cheated is not the same as losing on merit. Mr. Obama might be perceived by some today (who haven't been appraised of the latest news just breaking) that Mr. McCain was the standout winner. What Mr. Mayo forgets is that the battle is not the war. And the news cycle for this coming week is just starting.

Hang onto your hat, Winner McCain. It's all you'll have left after this week is done.

Posted by: Howard | August 18, 2008 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Nicolle Wallace, a spokeswoman for Mr. McCain, said on Sunday night that Mr. McCain had not heard the broadcast of the event while in his motorcade and heard none of the questions.

“The insinuation from the Obama campaign that John McCain, a former prisoner of war, cheated is outrageous,” Ms. Wallace said.

Honestly: Since McCain has been able to cheat on his current and former wife, he can cheat anyone. He can never be trusted.

Posted by: Hellen | August 18, 2008 12:23 AM | Report abuse

In any debate, you can tell that Obama lost by how loud and angry his supporters are in:

1) attacking his opponent afterwards, and

2) complaining that it was somehow "unfair"

Judging by the venom of the pro-Obama posts here, he lost badly.

Posted by: Robert L. Mayo | August 18, 2008 12:21 AM | Report abuse

And of course the Post has not a word of this scandal: McCain wasn't even in the building let alone a "bubble of silence" as his pals on the nut Right said.
Mr. Warren, the pastor of Saddleback, had assured the audience while he was interviewing Mr. Obama that “we have safely placed Senator McCain in a cone of silence” and that he could not hear the questions.

After Mr. Obama’s interview, he was joined briefly by Mr. McCain, and the candidates shook hands and embraced.

Mr. Warren started by asking Mr. McCain, “Now, my first question: Was the cone of silence comfortable that you were in just now?”

Mr. McCain deadpanned, “I was trying to hear through the wall.”

Interviewed Sunday on CNN, Mr. Warren seemed surprised to learn that Mr. McCain was not in the building during the Obama interview.

I was trying to hear throught the wall -- yet another McCain lie. When are you stenographers going to end the aping of whatever the McGoo camp tells you?
How was his 3 plus years of making anti-American prop for Russia's ally NV "heroic"? Because he says it? his cronies say it? Give us the video and audio of his "heroic" anti-American prop so we can understand the "hero"!

Posted by: McCain Lied again | August 18, 2008 12:20 AM | Report abuse

The more the lobbiest surrounding and funding McCain write his policies on taxes and oil drilling, the less palatable he is to Independants.
The more the Christian Reich force him to tow the GOP party platform, the less palatable he is to Independants.
McCain can't win without Independants.

Sleep EASY Barack

Posted by: mark | August 18, 2008 12:20 AM | Report abuse

Talk about snatching defeat from the jaws of victory! What another crew of Republican incompetents. I echo what's been written before me. McCain needs not to explain but to fire everyone tomorrow that was on his logistical team. And if they were taking orders from his strategy team then those morons need to go, too. Stupid, stupid, stupid. What were they thinking?? What possible ungodly nonsense were they thinking?! Thirty minutes late, while the pastor is telling everyone he's backstage sequestered. This country cannot be run by morons again.

Posted by: Charles | August 18, 2008 12:15 AM | Report abuse

Amazing what vicious comments are made about what seemed to be thoughtful analysis and answers on one side and position reponses on the other. I am thankful that Obama had the courage to sit in the lions den. Far better we have someone as president who thinks and is humble enough to say he does not know (only God does) at what time God infuses an immortal soul into a child in the womb. Throughout all philosophical and theological history and inquiry (How about St. Thomas Aquinas?) no one has claimed that two humans by their actions (no matter how carefully they have mixed the sperm and egg) can create an immortal soul. "Nemo dat quod non habet" -- no one can give what he does not have. Religious people who claim that merely the actions of mixing the sperm and egg creates an immortal soul make the creation of a new human life merely a mixture process. That's almost conceding the non-believers' assertion that the child in the womb is merely such a mixture. Maybe the humble "above my pay grade" comment of Obama was a bit poorly stated, but the man clearly knows he is not God who alone knows the answer to that question.

As for laws against abortion, who do we put in prison, the woman or the doctor? Or both?

Posted by: Thoughtful after watching twice | August 18, 2008 12:13 AM | Report abuse

Maybe we need to see hims go into a Alzheimer's rage, that should top it off. The man is half out of his mind.

-------------
McCain LIED AT A FORUM ON FAITH.

... ? what is left?

Posted by: John | August 18, 2008 12:06 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 12:08 AM | Report abuse

Tre & Sil your right. After a win campain people are placed in high positions in the new administration as a reward for their service during the election process. I'm willing to give McCain himself the benefit of the doubt but his handlers have to go and right now if he is to not lose credability among voters. We can't go thru another 4-8 years of the last administrations bungling. This late arrival was so stupid. I mean how stupid can these idiots be? He's got to fire everyone who was involved and quickly.

Posted by: Alex | August 18, 2008 12:08 AM | Report abuse

I found that kind of astounding. What is Mccain a mind reader. The old man is so demented he could not even fake that he knew the questions.

==========
McCain, on one of the questions, said "Do you want me to talk about the supreme court now, or later"? It does seem like he has heard Obama's interview already. Amazing.

Posted by: LaGeek | August 18, 2008 12:01 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 18, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

McCain LIED AT A FORUM ON FAITH.

... ? what is left?

Posted by: John | August 18, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

McCheater...the Repubs just CAN'T play it straight, can they?

Posted by: madisonhack | August 18, 2008 12:02 AM | Report abuse

McCain, on one of the questions, said "Do you want me to talk about the supreme court now, or later"? It does seem like he has heard Obama's interview already. Amazing.

Posted by: LaGeek | August 18, 2008 12:01 AM | Report abuse

Even if McCain DIDN'T listen to the broadcast during the 30 minutes he was late, (do I hear a resounding "I doubt it?"), the fact that he showed such disdain of the process and disrespect to Obama as to not even deign to be there on time ought to be a clue to the American people that this man - McSelf - truly only cares about himself and has no regard for the American public. (I will gladly recant my comment if McCain can prove he had an excellent and unavoidable reason for not being there on time.) How much else is he likely to blow off, or laugh away, during the next 8 years????? Personally, I do not want to be made to find out. For the last 8 years I have been telling people "I told you so" about Bush - I pray to all I hold holy that I will not be saying the same about McBush.

Posted by: Tre | August 18, 2008 12:01 AM | Report abuse

McCain needs to CUT THE BALLS OFF of key members of his staff NOW who could not manage a simple exercise of getting him to that event on time. The sheer, utter incompetence itself of the execution of such a simple task, with the ramifications now that we're just beginning to see, may just be enough to convince this old Republican to vote for Obama in November. I am just so freaking sick of this kind of inept arrogance. It's got to stop. McCain had better do something massive tomorrow and I don't mean "reassure" us. He's got to sack the whole string of people who were in the chain responsible for his arrival yesterday.

Posted by: Sil | August 17, 2008 11:59 PM | Report abuse

I am a born again Christian who has voted primarily Democratic because I try not to ever focus on a single issue. I also believe that Jesus spent time with sinners and the poor and needy. The bible never mentions Republicans or Democrats as the "party of God". It further states that, "ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God". Neither candidate is perfect in any way and I believe that God will attempt to guide whoever is elected in the decisions they encounter if they try to listen and trust Him when times are tough instead of relying exclusively on their own thinking.

Posted by: BornagainChristian | August 17, 2008 11:55 PM | Report abuse

According to Obama 1.5% of American households are wealthy (>$250K per year) and 4.34% of American households are middle class ($150K - $250K). That makes just less than 95% of us poor. I thought middle class meant the middle?

Posted by: muD | August 17, 2008 11:54 PM | Report abuse

What a jerk you are, poster BB

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 11:53 PM | Report abuse

McCain is too war-oriented and trigger happy to be president.

Wars have a way of spiraling out of control--they have for the 6000 years of history. When will they stop? Humans now have the power to end humanity.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 11:51 PM | Report abuse

McCheater.

Posted by: Fred | August 17, 2008 11:49 PM | Report abuse

- Senator John McCain was not in a so-called cone of silence on Saturday night while his rival, Senator Barack Obama, was being interviewed at the Saddleback Church in California, Mr. McCain was in his motorcade!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: m.tal | August 17, 2008 11:49 PM | Report abuse

I think it's plain to see,
You're off your meds, BB.
Before you go pee pee,
Best take your meds, BB.
Now take your meds, BB.
Go take your meds, BB.
Inject your meds, BB.
Swallow your meds, BB.
Gulp down your meds, BB.
Ingest your meds, BB.
Suck on your meds, BB.
Insert your meds, BB.
Insert them deep, BB.
And you know where.


Posted by: Not BB | August 17, 2008 11:48 PM | Report abuse

Would someone point out that Obama was not in the US Senate when the votes on the Iraq war were taken! Would they also point out his age when he claims fellowship with certain marchers? He wasn't potty trained yet- or maybe even in the country. Yet he tries to accrue to himself the honors won by others. He is inaccurate to say the least, a thief more likely.

Posted by: dennis | August 17, 2008 11:44 PM | Report abuse


"I've come to the conclusion that any anti-Obama remarks reveals nothing but fear, racism, and/or sheer stupidity on the part of the hate-monger making them."

Poor fella.........

Posted by: Billw | August 17, 2008 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the story that Rick Sanchez reported on this evening: There is a REAL problem here. I listened to the entire forum live on XMRadio while driving. I am not a political expert, however I am really good at listening to responses to questions and making a determination of whether the person responding has expected the question. Since John McCain was second it seems to me to have been imperitive that he be isolated from hearing either the questions or Obama's responses. It was a very odd setting and format in the first place. Instead of both being in place and having alternating questions and the opportunity for rebuttal. Further, if John McCain can't arrive in time for such an important event....what is wrong with that picture....the event could have been delayed with a simple announcement that McCain had not arrived yet. If he had a good excuse, then I am sure the viewers would understand. If he didn't have a good excuse then the chips should fall where they may. This could be just the tip of an iceberg, CNN should fully investigate all aspects of this.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 11:35 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA'S DEMEANOR: WHY SO SERENE? DOES HE KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT THE HILLARY PUTSCH THAT THE PUNDITS HAVE YET TO FIGURE OUT?

• Key clue: "Americans will get the president that they need." Maybe Barack wasn't talking about himself...


First impressions here last night were that Obama got snaked again.

Today we learn that McCain was not in a "cone of silence," but in his motorcade. So when he asked the pulpit puppetmaster about a line of questioning that hadn't come up, he revealed that the forum was a fraud.

Why should a book-hawking mega-preacher command such a national political stage? His questions were loaded, and Obama once again demonstrated his naivete by agreeing to appear when the fix already was in. At the very least, he should have insisted the candidates share the stage, with an opportunity for rebuttal.

Obama came out of this charade with as much as could be expected under the rigged circumstances. His supposed gaffe on the abortion question, when viewed through the eyes of his disillusioned base, reinforced the notion that he is capable of resisting his recent penchant for pandering. His comments about habeus corpus and restoring the rule of law showed that he's cognizant of the need to show some adherence to principle.

Obama's demeanor belied any sense that he's panicked about his sagging poll numbers or Hillary's roll call putsch, a trojan horse that's likely to make her the convention kingmaker (with Bill supplying the stage whispers).

Indeed, Obama's serene persona could signal that he's already signed on a deal that will hand the nomination to Al Gore, with both he and Hillary posing as noble warriors who dueled to a tie. Didn't I hear Obama say during the Saddlebrook event that the nation "will get the President it needs"? Perhaps he was not referring to himself.

And did not Obama confess to the sin of vanity, in so many words? Analyze Obama's words through the prism of what the psy-ops units call "neurolinguistic programming." (It's a pseudo-science, so by definition, it is predictive 50 percent of the time.) Perhaps Obama was sending signals about a preordained outcome that's far removed from the conventional wisdom.

The tracking polls coming out this week will reflect Obama's sagging fortunes, and McCain's surprisingly robust, if pandering, performance before his minion the Rev. Warren. Obama's veepee pick will dominate the news, but it could turn out to be irrelevant in the face of the trojan horse roll call. It is Obama who could turn out to be the vice presidential candidate in this cycle, as party leaders attempt to right a past wrong by putting Al Gore back in the White House.


BUT WILL THE ELECTION EVEN MATTER? Not when government-supported "vigilante injustice" squads are bypassing the judicial system to terrorize American citizens:
http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 17, 2008 11:33 PM | Report abuse

Toxic - is he proud to Capitalize proper nouns?

BB

Posted by: Fairlington Blade | August 17, 2008 11:32 PM | Report abuse

To Dano - I am a Vietnam era veteran. I served from 1968 through 1971. I was in the United States Navy.

There is no reference to his "cross in the dirt" story in any of his books. He has not referenced that story in interviews, etc.

Did you read my entire post? My references are right there. Couldn't get much clearer.

Posted by: Julie | August 17, 2008 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Well, McCant really showed his abilities there, dont ya think!! I mean, he even managed to get several Boring ass OLD , over used stories from his stump rhetoric in there, wow , the Guys really good!!
And if he had an ounce of beleivabitlity in him, please let me know where it was.I know his service records show him being POW and all that, but how does that qualify him or any one for running this country.??Same old speeche's, no real substance, repeat the line, over and over, break the record , dont kill babies, ...
Drill drill drill, i iremembered one, whew,. I really did that time,,, and now as he was allegedly in a cone of silence, backstage at the meeting, he was actually out cruising around the parkinglot, getting a chance to hear and gather responses to the upcoming questions!!!Pathetic.He couldnt tell you his real reason for being ashamed of his first marriage, because he walked out on his first wife while she waqs recovering from injuries from an accident, i beleive she was bed ridden so he couldnt wait to see her get better!!
If thats the kind of substance you want running this country, go ahead , vote for the great white hype, because thats all your'e getting , a bunch of hype, very little reality

Posted by: Bill | August 17, 2008 11:07 PM | Report abuse

dano...

I suppose it's also false that McCain crashed FIVE Navy planes, three of which were due to his gross negligence? Is it also false the McCain doesn't know the difference between Sunni & Shia? Is it also false that McCain deserted his wife because he was continuing to be an adulterer? Is it false that he shouted for a fellow senator to, "go F*** yourself" on the SENATE FLOOR? Is it also false that McCain voted AGAINST the new G I Bill, leaving his fellow vets hanging out to dry? I am one veteran who knows a FOOL when he sees one, especially one that's a "wrinkly white-haired guy" who disguises himself as a leader....and NOT very well!!!

Posted by: DickNH | August 17, 2008 11:06 PM | Report abuse

HOW TO RECOGNIZE PAID 'DISINFORMATION ARTISTS' POSTING TO 'THE FIX'

"The Fix" is a textbook for those who wish to learn how to recognize posts that could be officially sponsored propaganda from public or private sectors.

Here's the evidence:

1. The frequent highly personal attacks on certain habitues of this blog. These "targets" typically express liberal or progressive views. The attacks generally come just after these "dissidents" (to use the preferred term of the "controlerati") put up a post. A collorary to such attacks: inappropriate, out of context comments addressed to posters by name, such as "best to you and yours. Thanks for the opportunity, Chris."

One might reasonably conclude that the Washington Post web site is being used to intimidate (if not threaten) individuals who post here.

2. Multipage, computer-generated treatises and expositions on subjects such as Goebbels' propaganda handbook, or long-winded briefs claiming that John McCain's imprisonment rendered him psychologically unfit for the presidency. Some factions seem to fear the unpredictable, sometimes moderate McCain as much as the lefties of the "Kos" persuasion.

3. Posts that advocate for liberal or progressive positions, but which adopt a stident, abrasive, or racist tone, or use illogical arguments to make the point.

4. Posts that scold the Washington Post for allowing the posting of "obviously false" statements, because "false statements" should be deemed "obscene" speech. The First Amendment really drives these people crazy! (Is it just a coincidence that an FCC commissioner is talking about the possibility of imposing "equal time" regulations on web blogs? Since when is public free speech analogous to political advertising, which is commercial speech?)

Since "The Fix" provides a mechanism for practitioners of paid "disinformation" to reveal themselves, I strongly urge the Washington Post to continue to allow the free flow of information, and not to be intimidated into censorship or pre-screening. The unfettered dialog here -- good information and "disinformation" alike -- is a key reason why "The Fix" is America's premier political web site.

Readers here possess the intelligence to separate the wheat from the chaff all by themselves. Keep it coming -- all of it, even the rants of Dianne72 and Chevy55sc. We know what they're about -- just as we recognize posts from entities which shouldn't be using major media web sites to attack and defame.

With each invective, they reveal their true motives. They fool no one, while they damage the integrity of their enterprises.


Posted by: scrivener | August 17, 2008 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Kirk States:Anyway, for the uninformed or liars who still spew the line that Obama's birth certificate is not public, that's false. An image of it is posted on Obamaa's website.
Oh it's posted alright, but according to the statement at the bottom of the form...A"any alterations will invalidate this form". Seems like blacking out the Certificate Number just might make it invalid. Other questions arise in Indonesia as well since he didn't register at that Catholic School under the name of Obama, and the block on the form for religous preference clearly states Muslim.
So just who is Barrack Hussien Obama anyway? Other than an educated half white half black man that was a community organizer he has no accomplishments that are noteworthy. He is a well spoken, educated inexperienced nobody with dreams of grandeur. And I'm supposed to elect him as President. I think the Democratic Party can kiss my vote goodbye.

Posted by: JOHN SPENCER | August 17, 2008 10:55 PM | Report abuse

Chris...why did Pastor Rick say that McCain was placed in a "sound-proof cone" when, in fact, he hadn't even arrived at the church...he was about a half hour late, which leads me to believe he heard every question asked of Barack (at least during that time period), and therefore knew what was coming....sometimes answering almost before Pastor Rick could ask the full question.....methinks there is something rotten in Denmark !!!!

Posted by: DickNH | August 17, 2008 10:51 PM | Report abuse

The NY Times reports on its web site that McCain was not in a "cone of silence" during the Obama interview but was in his motor home on his way to the church. The McCain camp confirmed that fact but still denies he listened to Obama being interviewed. Whom are they kidding?!

Posted by: Munir 1 | August 17, 2008 10:48 PM | Report abuse

The NY Times reports on its web site that McCain was not in a "cone of silence" during the Obama interview but was in his motor home on his way to the church. The McCain camp confirmed that fact but still denies he listened to Obama being interviewed. Whom are they kidding?!

Posted by: Munir | August 17, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Julie-

Oh thanks Julie for your great insight. You know, John McCain probably never even went to Vietnam did he? Just something that George Bush 'cooked' up.

do your homework you hater. he's been telling that story for thirty years.

Posted by: dano | August 17, 2008 10:41 PM | Report abuse

One other observation: The Constitution of the United States of America specifically states that there shall be no religious test to hold office in this country. Does no one else see a problem with going to a church to either affirm or defend of their faith during a political campaign?

Frankly, what does it matter if the president is Christian, and why should it be anyone's damn business if they are (or are not)?

Posted by: Eric | August 17, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Quite seriously, no bias intended, after much observation and thought, I've come to the conclusion that any anti-Obama remarks reveals nothing but fear, racism, and/or sheer stupidity on the part of the hate-monger making them. I don't usually believe in black and white reality, but shades of grey. However, the contrast between positions and intentions on the candidates' parts truly frighens me- most of all- that it could be even remotely close. If you believe in America as envisioned by our Founding Founders- vote Obama.

Posted by: Mitch | August 17, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Revised for perfection and max. impact

Picture it, Trinity Church 2006.

Michelle Shiniqua Obama is speaking from the pulpit.

HAIR flooded with “Afro-Sheen”

Her prominent nostrils flared wide-open in a rage,

Brow furrowed and a scowl of hate written across her face.

Fist pumping the air at a feverish pitch,

Church members SCREAMING, “Bring it home SISTER Obama”

All the while ranting against "whitey" and how they keep "raising the bar".

This my friends is what we will see in October when they release her "whitey-gate" tapes on YouTube.

Chevy - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Plagiarism is very series. During the Saddleback Forum between Senator Obama and Senator McCain were both asked the question, “YOU PUBLICLY
SAY YOU ARE A FOLLOWER OF CHRIST. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN TO YOU AND HOW DOES FAITH WORK OUT IN YOUR LIFE ON A DAILY
BASIS? WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO YOU?

John McCain’s answer: “MEANS I'M SAVED AND FOREGIVEN AND WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THE WORLD. OUR FAITH ENCOMPASSES NOT JUST THE
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA BUT THE WORLD. CAN I TELL YOU ANOTHER STORY REAL QUICK?

Q SURE.

John McCain’s answer: VIETNAMESE KEPT US IN PRISON IN CONDITIONS OF SOLITAIRY CONFINEMENT FOR TWO OR THREE TO A CELL. THEY
DID THAT BECAUSE THEY KNEW THEY COULD BREAK DOWN OUR RESISTANCE. ONE OF THE TECHNIQUES THAT THEY USED TO GET
INFORMATION WAS TO TAKE ROPES AND TIE THEM AROUND YOUR BICEPS, PULL YOUR BICEPS BEHIND YOU, LOOP THE ROPE AROUND
YOUR HEAD, PULL YOUR HEAD DOWN BETWEEN YOUR KNEES AND LEAVE YOU IN THAT POSITION. YOU CAN MANAGE, IT'S VERY
UNCOMFORTABLE. ONE NIGHT I WAS BEING PUNISHED IN THAT FASHION. ALL OF A SUDDEN THE DOOR OF THE CELL OPENED, THE
GUARD CAME IN, A GUY WHO WAS JUST WHAT WE CALL A GUN GUARD. HE JUST WALKED AROUND THE CAMP WITH A GUN ON HIS
SHOULDER. HE WENT LIKE THIS AND THEN HE LOOSENED THE ROPES. HE CAME BACK ABOUT FOUR HOURS LATER, HE TIGHTENED
THEM UP AGAIN AND LEFT. THE FOLLOWING CHRISTMAS, BECAUSE IT WAS CHRISTMAS DAY, WE WERE ALLOWED TO STAND OUTSIDE OF
OUR CELL FOR A FEW MINUTES, AND THOSE DAYS WE WERE NOT ALLOWED TO SEE OR COMMUNICATE WITH EACH OTHER ALTHOUGH WE
CERTAINLY DID. AND I WAS STANDING OUTSIDE FOR MY FEW MINUTES, OUTSIDE MY CELL. HE CAME WALKING UP. HE STOOD
THERE FOR A MINUTE AND WITH HIS HANDLE ON THE DIRT IN THE COURTYARD HE DREW A CROSS AND HE STOOD THERE AND A MINUTE
LATER, HE RUBBED IT OUT AND WALKED AWAY. FOR A MINUTE THERE, THERE WAS JUST TWO CHRISTIANS WORSHIPPING TOGETHER.
I'LL NEVER FORGET THAT MOMENT SO EVERY DAY –
This story is taken from Alexander Solzhenitsyn: : “ Along with other prisoners, he worked in the fields day after day, in rain and sun, during summer and winter. His life appeared to be nothing more than backbreaking labor and slow starvation. The intense suffering reduced him to a state of despair.
On one particular day, the hopelessness of his situation became too much for him. He saw no reason to continue his struggle, no reason to keep on living. His life made no difference in the world. So he gave up.
Leaving his shovel on the ground, he slowly walked to a crude bench and sat down. He knew that at any moment a guard would order him to stand up, and when he failed to respond, the guard would beat him to death, probably with his own shovel. He had seen it happen to other prisoners.
As he waited, head down, he felt a presence. Slowly he looked up and saw a skinny old prisoner squat down beside him. The man said nothing. Instead, he used a stick to trace in the dirt the sign of the Cross. The man then got back up and returned to his work.
As Solzhenitsyn stared at the Cross drawn in the dirt his entire perspective changed. He knew he was only one man against the all-powerful Soviet empire. Yet he knew there was something greater than the evil he saw in the prison camp, something greater than the Soviet Union. He knew that hope for all people was represented by that simple Cross. Through the power of the Cross, anything was possible.
Solzhenitsyn slowly rose to his feet, picked up his shovel, and went back to work. Outwardly, nothing had changed. Inside, he had received hope.”
[From Luke Veronis, "The Sign of the Cross"; Communion, issue 8, Pascha 1997.]
John McCain is very familiar with Alexander Solzhenitsyn. On August 4, 2008 John McCain wrote an article about him that appear in the NY Sun called “Solzhenitsn at Work: http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117


Posted by: Julie | August 17, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

To Chris Cillizza, I quote a passage near the end of your blog:

'McCain explained his motivation as a desire to "inspire a generation of Americans to serve a cause greater than their self interests" -- a well worn but effective definition of his life in elected politics.'

So does this "effective definition of his life in elected politics" that you are so obviously enamored of include his association with the Keating Seven corruption scandal, or his whitewashing and refusal to do anything of substance against his colleagues implicated in the Abramhoff scandal? Can you really be serious when you look up to McCain for serving "greater interests?" His political life at best has been a mix of public service and selfish self interest. And his campaign since the primaries has been nothing but a contradiction of the very few brave stands he actually has taken over his 30 years of public (and self) service.

Shame on you for being so duped by the McCain myth machine! And more shame for continuing to propagate it!

Posted by: Eric | August 17, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Picture it, Trinity Church 2006. Michelle Shiniqua Obama is speaking from the pulpit. Her prominent nostrils are flared, brow furrowed, and a scowl across her face. She is ranting against "whitey" and how they keep "raising the bar". All the while punching the air with a fist-bump. This my friends is what we will see in October when they release her "whitey-gate" tapes on YouTube.

Posted by: Dianne72
-------------------
Dianne 72, spoken like a true dispicable racist!! Congratulations! Michelle NEVER called anyone "whitie" and she never stood behind the pulpit of their fomer church. You, Dianne72, are telling a big whopper and ought to be ashamed of yourself! I bet you must weigh in at at least 200 pounds, live in a trashy trailer somewhere in the hills of West Virgina or Kentucky, you do meth, and take a bath in a huge barrel, once a month,with about a third filled with water and lots of lye soap, once a month, I bet your nostrils flare out when they get a whiff of your putrid body odor!! I bet your hair is full of lice and you wash it with kerosene! I bet you eat possum at least six days a week!!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

I don't get on these forums often but when I do I sign my name not a pseudonym. If you are not proud of your comments & beliefs-shut up.

Posted by: Wickiser | August 17, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Leadership is not about snap decisions or rigid opinions on tough issues. Leadership, among other things, is the ability to take all factors into account in order to find the most effective solution. This is not weakness - it is vision. Mr. Obama has it. This country has been damaged by a severe lack of it at the presidential level.

This election is an easy choice for those who see the ridiculous path we have been on. In matters both foreign and domestic the Republicans have left a shambles, and promise more of the same.

Mr. McCain is a great war hero, but what's that got to do with being president? The age of making our strongest warriors into leaders of nations is long gone, or these two could just arm wrestle and settle this thing right then and there.

I'm no big fan of the Democratic party, but it's time to hand it back over. And as a candidate for president from whatever party, Obama is a pretty decent choice.

Posted by: Richard from Wisconsin | August 17, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Revised for perfection and max. impact

Picture it, Trinity Church 2006.

Michelle Shiniqua Obama is speaking from the pulpit.

HAIR flooded with “Afro-Sheen”

Her prominent nostrils flared wide-open in a rage,

Brow furrowed and a scowl of hate written across her face.

Fist pumping the air at a feverish pitch,

Church members SCREAMING, “Bring it home SISTER Obama”

All the while ranting against "whitey" and how they keep "raising the bar".

This my friends is what we will see in October when they release her "whitey-gate" tapes on YouTube.

Chevy - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Add my voice to those who are completely disgusted at the whole idea of our presidential candidates stumping Jesus.

This is such a revolting display of spiritual poverty and political convenience. It's nauseating and demeaning to all religion and to those whose faith means more than that.

Obama and McCain are unworthy of the trust which leadership requires because they are obviously willing to sell their souls to the populace to gain power. It's disgusting.

Posted by: Choirboy | August 17, 2008 10:26 PM | Report abuse

As usual, There are several obama bots here venting it out on forums for few bucks from his campaign call one and all who post honest opinion a racist, retarded...

But you shameless guys don;t get it.. .no matter what you proclaim... it desn't make a ting of difference in americans.. its a failed strategy,.. yesterday's interview shows obama's inexperience and 20 years radical black liberation theology lessons from his racist uncle pastor wright

Posted by: jon | August 17, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

It is very obvious from some of the posts on this site that many rightwingers do not get it. They prefer to spew their venom and hatred rather than to tackle the issues. It is far easier for some to spew their hatred about an individual rather than to tackle the big political issues of the day. Domestic and foreign policies, economic and energy policies, deficit spending, fighting wars of choice with a charge card,and on and on will ultimately determine the continuation of the United States as we know it. The Republicans spin a platform that gives only lipservice to the electorate while making sure that the wealthiest among us reap the rewards of a corrupt captitalism. There is absolutely no accountability for corporate fraud and injustice in our country today.

Yes, McCain said it well when he said that those making $5 million a year are wealthy. And he is their defender. He said so last night.

Posted by: Earl C | August 17, 2008 10:22 PM | Report abuse

Despite Assurances, McCain Wasn’t in a ‘Cone of Silence’

New York Times

By KATHARINE Q. SEELYE
Published: August 17, 2008

ORLANDO, Fla. — Senator John McCain was not in a so-called cone of silence on Saturday night while his rival, Senator Barack Obama, was being interviewed at the Saddleback Church in California.

The McCain campaign, which flew here Sunday from California, said Mr. McCain was in his motorcade on the way to the church as Mr. Obama was being interviewed by the Rev. Rick Warren.

The matter is of interest because Mr. McCain, who followed Mr. Obama’s hourlong appearance in the forum, was asked virtually the same questions as Mr. Obama. Mr. McCain’s performance was well received, raising speculation among some viewers, especially supporters of Mr. Obama, that he was not as isolated during the Obama interview as Mr. Warren implied.

Mr. Warren, pastor of Saddleback, had assured the audience while he was interviewing Mr. Obama that “we have safely placed Senator McCain in a cone of silence” and that he could not hear the questions.

After Mr. Obama’s interview, he was joined briefly by Mr. McCain and the candidates shook hands and embraced.

Mr. Warren started by asking him, “Now, my first question: Was the cone of silence comfortable that you were in just now?”

Mr. McCain deadpanned, “I was trying to hear through the wall.”

Interviewed Sunday on CNN, Mr. Warren seemed surprised to learn that Mr. McCain was not in the building during the Obama interview. A spokeswoman for Mr. McCain said he was en route to the church.

Posted by: mister.earl | August 17, 2008 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Wow. I've never spent time here before much but this place is troll central.

Racists, rednecks, more racists, evangelical hate-mongers, yikes.

Some of the posts are astounding. Does anyone weed anything out here at all?

Just wondering

Posted by: Observer
-------------------
Observer, well looks like you landed in the right place for you!! As you immediately join in with your own degradations: "Racists, rednecks, more racists, evangelical hate-mongers..." Do you realize this makes YOU a troll as well?? Oberserver, you criticize the people here as "troll central" yet YOU sound like a troll yourself!! Yikes. Please note, I did not call you a troll, like you have called the people here "racists, reednecks, more racists, evangelical hate-mongers", I have simply said you SOUND like a troll. BIG difference, wouldn'you agree?

For the record I am none of those things you mentioned, I love Barack Obama and what he offers our country. He's my candidate for president!!

Another Observer :)

Posted by: Nina | August 17, 2008 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I didn't see all of Obama, but I thought the crowd really responded to McCain, and I was scratching my head wondering WHY? His responses were quick on the draw (did he get the questions in advance?), and most were short "sound bites" then he goes off to the same things he keeps saying on his tours. Like a broken record, and many were not appropriate answers to the specific questions. And he keeps saying "My Friends" which drives me crazy.
But the audience seemed to love him. I just didn't see what they saw. I wish Rick Warren asked him to stay focused. I wasn't impressed with McCain, I was scared of his winning and what wars he'll get us into.

Posted by: SallyUSA | August 17, 2008 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Obama wrote his book Dreams of My Father after graduating law school the first african american president of harvard law review and before he became a politician... The publishing house thought his story was remarkable enough that he should have the opportunity to tell his story. This book provides perhaps the most personal and honest account of an American leader and their faith in Christianity. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in understanding the depth and sincerity of Obama's faith.

Posted by: Ed | August 17, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Toxic Avenger - you don't consider working your way through Harvard an achievement. Wow, you must be a very accomplished individual! You have your GED or something? How about a job? You work at anything interesting like a US Senator, helping shape the world we live in? No, well maybe Walmart's then? What a dumb cracker.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 10:09 PM

Another Lefty Elitist. What if he does work at a WalMart. what's wrong with that. what's wrong with working to provide for your family. Earning a paycheck. Fighting to survive. "Bob the Snob" wouldn't would he. he'd go you for a handout that the Government owes me. Nothing wrong with hard work no matter the profession. that's what you snobs don't get. You profess to help the little guy, yet you look down your nose and laugh and make fun of them.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

There is nothing impressive about spouting off a bunch of banter just remotely related to the questions, as Senator McCain did last night. There is nothing about losing five military fighter jets & getting caught that makes one a war hero (swift boaters, John Kerry was ten times the hero that your buddy mccain was). There is nothing christian about how mccain abandoned his sick wife for the mob-related fluzzy that he is now shacked up with. What an embarassment.

Posted by: Ron Sampson | August 17, 2008 10:17 PM | Report abuse

CNN broke the story.

=========
Obamabots are already spreading the story that McCain had access to the questions I see. They just can't accept that McCain, who does town hall Q&A every day, is obviously more on top of the issues that Obama who just issues a prepared speech. The debates are going to chew Obama up, but of course Obamabots will have excuses, explanations, etc.

Posted by: Tristan | August 17, 2008 10:12 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Would someone please give both candidates some basic US Census figures on income and net wealth? Median family income in the US is around the $50,000/year level- that is of course lower than the mean, for you cannot make less than zero but some few make many many millions. An income of $150,000/year puts you into the top few per cent of Americans. It is like saying that someone who is six foot three and weighs 275 pounds is "average size." As for McCain's 5 million figure, that is like saying that Kobe Bryant is of middling height.

According to the most recent US Census figures I have seen, in order to make it into the top 20% of Americans in net wealth- not income- you need only have assets of about $180,000. That includes home equity, savings, personal property, and pensions.

Obama calling an income of $150,000 a year "middle class" means that the middle includes people in the top 5% in income. McCain's answer is almost literally incredible- that neither one is called on their definitions of "middle class" and "wealthy" is an indication of how few people bother to look at basic figures before blathering.

This country would be well served if both sides were called to task for their extraordinary lack of understanding of income and wealth levels in the US.

Posted by: Appalled | August 17, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

I guess it is a bit distressing to see all of the truly low-information morons exposing to everyone exactly how stupid they are. It's too bad you aren't embarrassed for yourselves a little more. Don't worry, we smarter people know how dumb you are.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:07 PM

Chevy, don't despair. another East coast Liberal Elitist. They know best. You and the rest of us simpletons need to remember that. LOL

Posted by: Dano | August 17, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Dennis Fisher wrote:

"McCain was clearly at this best during this forum. I am grateful that he unashamedly expressed his Christian views."

And he can do it without once mentioning the name of the author of our faith, Jesus Christ. He was even in a church. If he cannot mention Jesus' name in church, then when will he mention it? I, for one, cannot talk about my Christian faith without mentioning Jesus by name. I mentioned this fact to some of my conservative friends at church today and they were embarrassed. They were absolutely quiet. The cause of Jesus was not advanced by McCain last night.

Posted by: Earl C | August 17, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Obamabots are already spreading the story that McCain had access to the questions I see. They just can't accept that McCain, who does town hall Q&A every day, is obviously more on top of the issues that Obama who just issues a prepared speech. The debates are going to chew Obama up, but of course Obamabots will have excuses, explanations, etc.

Posted by: Tristan | August 17, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Please liberal kooks, name me ONE accomplishment of B. Hussein Obama-just one!

Vote John McCain-The one who's proud to be an american.

Posted by: Toxic Avenger | August 17, 2008 10:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm talking to Obama head on\\

Why are you such a loser?

.


///

Posted by: Lisa | August 17, 2008 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Toxic Avenger - you don't consider working your way through Harvard an achievement. Wow, you must be a very accomplished individual! You have your GED or something? How about a job? You work at anything interesting like a US Senator, helping shape the world we live in? No, well maybe Walmart's then? What a dumb cracker.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 10:09 PM | Report abuse

chevy55, you need to go back to working on your car or anything less harmful to yourself than actually typing your "thoughts" on a keyboard. You are actually an amazing simpleton.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:09 PM | Report abuse

I guess it is a bit distressing to see all of the truly low-information morons exposing to everyone exactly how stupid they are. It's too bad you aren't embarrassed for yourselves a little more. Don't worry, we smarter people know how dumb you are.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Grampa McCain should be locked up, he's a menace to mankind, blow up everything, kill everybody that doesn't agree with him, oh geeeez was that a morter round, and the cross in the dirt story! what a crock, that story is as old as dirt.

He's suffering from shell shock, dementia, or just old age.

You really want this nutcase running the country! Electing John McBush just guarantees that all those countries that hate the U.S. now will increase their hatred a hundredfold.

Solve the economic problems of the country, thats easy, start another war.

Lets bomb Russia, god they just invaded Georgia, we can't let that slide, we must respond, launch an attack, what! we have no troops, they're busy in Iraq sir, how about we ask France to invade for us?

This guy is obsessed with war, the old wars, the present wars, and wars he's about to have.

Posted by: larry the cable guy | August 17, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

john mccain clearly has strong convictions and you know where he stands.

barack does too, sort of. I guess. uh..uh..

McCain answered and looked Pastor Rick and the audience straight in the eye. Spoke from the heart.

Did anyone else notice Barack looking at the ground so much, stammering until he found an answer, to try and go with? Why's that? People here are talking about how thoughtful and introspective barack was. You've got to be kidding. he was Lost. he was all over the place with the Pastor trying to help him with his answers and bring it to a close because of his rambling.

No wonder he's running as far and as fast as he can from McCain's request to meet him in these unscripted events.

I bet Barack won't agree to a single meeting. he won't be able to withstand the damage to his campaign that would occur with an event that was unsrcipted where he couldn't read from a teleprompter.

Posted by: dano | August 17, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Sagar said:

"after watching yesterday's forum, I am convinced that Obama is a pretend christian for political purpose only. He does not like to confront Evil, because he will be confronting himself and his evil buddies like terrorist Ayers and Radical evil like Wright and the list of his evil buddies goes on..

The thing (evil) speaks for itself.

God bless America, keep this evil out of power."


Sagar obviously did not hear the forum. Obama said that he would confront evil. Since McCain did not once mention Jesus by name, I guess that he is playing politics with religion. He said that he attended (maybe even said that he was a member) of North Phoenix Baptist Church, but I have not heard anyone say that McCain is in fact a member of this church or has been baptised. Obama's Christian testimony is very clear for any Christian to understand, except perhaps for the Christian fundamentalists/legalists in our midst. McCain's Christian testimony is less obvious. However, I am not adequately equipped to judge the Christian credentials of either candidate. Only God knows the hearts of men. Christians who judge other Christians in the way that Sagar does do not know Christ.

Posted by: Earl C | August 17, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Ease up on Chevy55 folks, he's just letting his breeding show.

He's what is known as "the base". These folks are responsible for the condition of America now. There measured and thoughtful response to the obvious condition of our economy and foreign policy is to make fun of Democrats' names and physical appearances.

The law of natural selection will eventually weed them out, as I'm sure that procreation is be an issue, since they have to find willing partners to make little ones of them.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Picture it, Trinity Church 2006.

Michelle Shiniqua Obama is speaking from the pulpit.

Her prominent nostrils flared wide open, brow furrowed, and a scowl across her face.

She is ranting against "whitey" and how they keep "raising the bar".

Fist pumping the air at a feverish pitch! I could just see it..

This my friends is what we will see in October when they release her "whitey-gate" tapes on YouTube.

Chevy - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Dear Toxic Avenger. You're an embarassment yourself, idiot.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Looks like a lot of the retard wingnuts have moved over from the Moonie Times to the Post. Well, why not? With the editorial staff being a bunch of unreconstructed neocons, and idiot "journalists" like Dana Milbank who never saw a cocktail weenie he didn't like, particularly when provided by faux "Mavericks" like McCain, there is hardly any difference between the Washington Times and the Washington Post anymore.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Dear Gkam, we don't "hate" Obama like liberals "hate" america, we are embarrassed to call him an "american". Speaking of "stress" I seriously don't believe Obama has ever succeeded in a difficult situation, for he has never shown any accomplishments politically-thus his blank resume. "Mamma don't let your babies grow up to be liberals"!

Posted by: Toxic Avenger | August 17, 2008 10:03 PM | Report abuse

McCain knew the questions before he came on stage. He must have been given the questions earlier. He didn't wait for some of the questions to be asked before he attempted to answer.

Posted by: cathyb | August 17, 2008 10:01 PM | Report abuse

McCain was clearly at this best during this forum. I am grateful that he unashamedly expressed his Christian views.

Posted by: Dennis Fischer | August 17, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

To the White Race

My Grandmother is a “typical White Person” Barry Hussein Nobama 3/21/2008.

Like it or not, that is a RACIST remark against the White race by Barry NoBama.

Please explain to me how you can support this racist after he “SPIT” in your face?

I really do need to understand how you can support someone who just hucked a luggi at your entire family.

Why isn’t the Washington post demanding he clarify his racist remark?

Chevy – Educated Redneck

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Wow, the Obama-haters are out in organized force.

First of ll, the candidates should not be pandering to those whose decisions are based on emotion and superstition.

As a Vietnam Vet, I can assure you that McCain has serious unresolved psychological problems, probably from PTSD. It is evident in his reactions, his inappropriate comments, his quickness to anger, and the occasional sudden rage. He is not to be trusted to make decisions in times of stress.

Posted by: gkam | August 17, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Without a doubt, the "comments" of chevy55sc and Dianne72 are the most ingnorant, incoherent and misinformed I've ever ready anywhere...period.

Posted by: Bill Houck | August 17, 2008 9:57 PM | Report abuse

after watching yesterday's forum, I am convinced that Obama is a pretend christian for political purpose only. He does not like to confront Evil, because he will be confronting himself and his evil buddies like terrorist Ayers and Radical evil like Wright and the list of his evil buddies goes on..

The thing (evil) speaks for itself.

God bless America, keep this evil out of power.

Posted by: sagar | August 17, 2008 9:56 PM | Report abuse

What a scam!! I admire Senator McCain for his service. My brother-in-law lost his life in Vietnam. If we want a comic in disguise, elect McCain. Senator Obama was thoughtful and did not respond with nonsense. He was thoughtful and did not respond quickly with a "quip". What a frightening time we live in. I am hopeful that America recognizes that to "keep our country first" (McCain's quote), we will vote in a thoughtful way for Obama. It's important!

Posted by: scooter41 | August 17, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

What a scam!! I admire Senator McCain for his service. My brother-in-law lost his life in Vietnam. If we want a comic in disguise, elect McCain. Senator Obama was thoughtful and did not respond with nonsense. He was thoughtful and did not respond quickly with a "quip". What a frightening time we live in. I am hopeful that America recognizes that to "keep our country first" (McCain's quote), we will vote in a thoughtful way for Obama. It's important!

Posted by: scooter41 | August 17, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA'S DEMEANOR: WHY SO SERENE? DOES HE KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT THE HILLARY PUTSCH THAT THE PUNDITS HAVE YET TO FIGURE OUT?

• Key clue: "We will get the president that we need." Maybe Barack wasn't talking about himself...


First impressions here last night were that Obama got snaked again.

Today we learn that McCain was not in a "cone of silence" when Obama was being quizzed by the Rev. Warren, but was in his motorcade. So when McCain asked the pulpit puppetmaster about a line of questioning that hadn't come up, he revealed that the forum was a fraud.

Why should a book-hawking mega-preacher command such a national political stage? His questions were loaded, and Obama once again demonstrated his naivete by agreeing to appear when the fix already was in. At the very least, he should have insisted the candidates share the stage, with an opportunity for rebuttal.

Obama came out of this charade with as much as could be expected under the rigged circumstances. His supposed gaffe on the abortion question, when viewed through the eyes of his disillusioned base, reinforced the notion that he is capable of resisting his recent penchant for pandering. His comments about habeus corpus and restoring the rule of law showed that he's cognizant of the need to demonstrate adherence to principle.

Obama's demeanor belied any sense that he's panicked about his sagging poll numbers or Hillary's roll call putsch, a trojan horse that's likely to make her the convention kingmaker (with Bill supplying the stage whispers).

Indeed, Obama's serene persona could signal that he's already signed on a deal that will hand the nomination to Al Gore, with both he and Hillary posing as noble warriors who dueled to a tie. Didn't I hear Obama say during the Saddlebrook event that "... we will get the President we need"? Perhaps he was not referring to himself.

And did not Obama confess to the sin of vanity, in so many words? Analyze Obama's words through the prism of what the psy-ops units call "neurolinguistic programming." (It's a pseudo-science, so by definition, it is predictive 50 percent of the time.) Perhaps Obama was sending signals about a preordained outcome that's far removed from the conventional wisdom.

The tracking polls coming out this week will reflect Obama's sagging fortunes, and McCain's surprisingly robust, if pandering, performance before his minion the Rev. Warren. Obama's veepee pick will dominate the news, but it could turn out to be irrelevant in the face of the trojan horse roll call. It is Obama who could turn out to be the vice presidential candidate in this cycle, as party leaders attempt to right a past wrong by putting Al Gore back in the White House.


BUT WILL THE ELECTION EVEN MATTER? Not when government-supported "vigilante injustice" squads are bypassing the judicial system to terrorize American citizens:
http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 17, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

55 CHEVY SHOULD BE BANNED FROM THIS FORUM. WILL SOMEONE IN CHARGE HERE PLEASE NOTE THE VILE PERSONAL ATTACKS AGAINST MICHELLE OBAMA AND HER FACE, BODY AND SOUL? SICK PEOPLE HERE, WHY ARE YOU ALLOWING THEM A SOAPBOX TO SPEW SUCH FOUL, SINFUL NOTIONS?

Posted by: birdybee | August 17, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Chevy - if you're going to be a redneck, at least be an original one and don't copy/paste Dianne72. Getting a little sloppy, aintya?

BB

Posted by: Fairlington Blade | August 17, 2008 9:47 PM

=========================================

If you read my earlier post you would have seen me thanking her and I would be stealing some of her work for future NObama attacks.

The lady is awesome

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

I listened intently to both interviews given by Rick Warren. Having taught his book, "The Purpose Driven Life," to my Bible study class several years ago, Rev. Warren was evenhanded in his approach with both men. I am curious to know what he will say on "Larry King Live" Monday night.

Mr. Obama gave clear and thoughtful answers to Rev. Warren. Afterall, Warren was the one giving the interview. Mr. McCain prefered to dodge many of the questions by giving his own stories and requesting additional time to tell even more stories. He prefered to present himself as a comedian to the audience rather than as a thoughtful stateman seeking the highest political office in the land.

I did notice that Mr. McCain never once mentioned Jesus by name or inference. Mr. Obama had no difficultly in his references to Jesus, to God, and to scripture when appropriate in his comments. I found Mr. McCain's behavior in this regard somewhat interesting since the forum was taking place in a church. It was very obvious that McCain was giving his stump speech whenever he could.

I'll make one other observation: Obama's responses made it obvious that Obama does not cut off debate or discussion. McCain's often turse and cute responses reflected a person who is not interested in either debate or discussion. He may have pleased the assembled audience, but he would not please those of us who see that the sensitive and difficult questions of the day cannot be answered in such a flip way.

Posted by: Earl C, Virginia Beach | August 17, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Someone should coach Dianne72 on speling.
Posted by: Fairlington Blade | August 17, 2008 9:43 PM
===================================
SpeLing?

You do realize you just made a complete azz of yourself.

How embarrassing it must be to be you.

Bet this happens to you frequently.

Chevy - Impossible to make this stuff up, it's that good.


Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Chevy - if you're going to be a redneck, at least be an original one and don't copy/paste Dianne72. Getting a little sloppy, aintya?

BB

Posted by: Fairlington Blade | August 17, 2008 9:47 PM | Report abuse

About abortion. I agree that at some point the fetus acquires human rights. My question is at what point do the rights of the fetus supercede the rights of the mother.

Posted by: Wickiser | August 17, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

I would prefer a President who is smarter than the average American. Not someone who was last in his class.

I would prefer someone who understands and respects the rule of law to be President. Not someone who thinks that the laws do not pertain to them.

I would prefer a President who thinks before they act. Not someone who shoots from the hip.

I would prefer a President who realizes he/she does not have all the answers about the mysteries of life. Not someone who says, "Save the fetus" but whose policies will starve the child.

I would prefer a President who will lead with moral policies. Not someone who panders to idea of morality but is really about keeping the status quo.

I prefer a President who can articulate their faith in God, not someone who has nothing to say about it.

It seems that once again many evangelicals have been manipulated by fear and distracted by wedge issues instead of carefully scrutinizing which candidates are best prepared get America back on track.

Posted by: Hope Forchange | August 17, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Yes, McCain's short answers work well with low information sorts like Chevy55 who really don't care about the facts or the truth or what's right. It's just to much damn effort to git educated nowadays.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Someone should coach Dianne72 on speling. Perhaps she should learn how to spell before giving advice on elocution.

BB

And, yes, the mistake was deliberate. Just to see if anyone is paying attention.

Posted by: Fairlington Blade | August 17, 2008 9:43 PM | Report abuse

My husband was undecided about who to vote for until last night.

After watching the two candidates, he plans to vote for McCain.

Obama presented himself like a "professor" not a leader.

McCain did a great job.

Personally, I have no dog in that fight - as I plan to vote for Ralph Nader.

Posted by: Catherine | August 17, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Picture it, Trinity Church 2006.

Michelle Shiniqua Obama is speaking from the pulpit.

Her prominent nostrils flared wide open, brow furrowed, and a scowl across her face.

She is ranting against "whitey" and how they keep "raising the bar".

All the while pumping her fist straight up at a feverish pitch in anger.

This my friends is what we will see in October when they release her "whitey-gate" tapes on YouTube.

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

It's not like he chose to suffer; he was working on becoming an Admiral and it blew up in his face. Big frickin' hero. The rest of his life story is one of privilege, freedom from want and health care paid for by the taxpayer from cradle to grave
==========================================

And you know what it's like to be beaten for 6 years. broken bones, scars, etc.

What a dirtbag you are. You're ilk make me want to puke.

Chevy
--------
Prior to John McCain getting shot down and taken prisoner, his commanders had harshly reprimanded him for unknown offenses but which obviously were pretty serious. They told him he would NEVER make admiral as he had shamed the McCain name (Grandpa & Daddy both admirals in the U.S. Navy), shamed he U.S. Navy, and the United States of America. With this in mind, I cannot help but wonder if McCain was on a self-suicide mission. Think about it, he had already attacked his target; however, he defied his commanders by not immediately returning to base and by "choosing" to circle back toward the destroyed target. He flew in slowly and low, why? Why did he circle back, why did he do so in CLEAR SIGHT OF THE ENEMY? Was McCain thinking that if he got shot down, he would be dead when he hit the ground and would be an instant hero?? There is NO logical reason as to why McCain circled back to the target he had already bombed, NONE!! Of Note, John McCain never made admiral nor did he EVER RECEIVE "THE MEDAL OF HONOR" the most prestigious award a military person can receive! IF (a very BIG IF) McCain was a true hero, he would have been one of the receipients of this great and honored award! He wasn't, so he is not a true hero. All our men and women in the military do a tremendous and brave job whereever they are assigned and all are heroes in their own right, especially in war situations. The thing is, most of these wonderful men and women do not boast about being heros, they are happy to serve their country whereever and whenever they are needed. To me, they are bigger heroes than John McCain. Thank, military folks, for your dedicated and courageous service to America and to our citizens. May God be with you, may he keep you safe, and my you return safe and sound.

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Chevy55sc - are you mocking me? Are you some kind of middle-aged bully who misses beating up on the kid with glasses in grade school? Do you think 55 Chevy's are cool? Big surprise, you probably still have posters in the bedroom of your trailer that you share with your sister. Dumb cracker.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

To those of you who are saying McCain married into a crime family. Bull s---. Obama comes from radical, Islamic terrorist. His brother is one, maybe other brothers. His step father was a radical and his father....well, he was someone who broke the law...married without divorce, etc. So don't crap on McCain. Your man Obama comes from bad seeds.

Posted by: George Kristy | August 17, 2008 9:36 PM | Report abuse

Eric Hofer, one of the most famous and respected 20th century American philosophers correctly identified religion as a tool used by tyrants to control the masses and to get them to do their bidding. History is full of examples right to the present day. In the last 8 years, the blood of hundreds of thousands has been shed by the US military by order of the Neo-cons, who are bought and paid for by the oil and defense industries. So evangelicals, how does it feel to be used as a weapon of evil by the pawns of Satan? Sorry to rain on your parade, but until you admit your sins, you cannot receive the forgiveness of Jesus.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 9:36 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand how there can be a theological 'moment' of conception until there is a scientifically agreed 'moment'. Any educated scientist (or moral theologian, for that matter) will tell you that the fusing of sperm and ovum occurs over several hours. There is no 'moment'. Whether or not he was avoiding the question, Obama's answer has to be correct.

Posted by: Australian | August 17, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Wow. I've never spent time here before much but this place is troll central.

Racists, rednecks, more racists, evangelical hate-mongers, yikes.

Some of the posts are astounding. Does anyone weed anything out here at all?

Just wondering.

Posted by: Observer | August 17, 2008 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Obama could not answer a single question straight forward. He just deflected them and just threw few words up in the air... born alive child was a perfect example...

This showed his weakness and lack of clarity on critical issues that our society faces today.

McCain was straight and clear on all questions.

Posted by: jon | August 17, 2008 9:33 PM | Report abuse

It's now admitted that McCain didn't arrive at the Saddleback Church forum until half hour after it started. He wasn't in a "cone of silence" at the beginning of the interview as stated. I guess Christian evangelicals can't be trusted anymore than Republicans can.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 9:21 PM
========================================

Of really B O B?

WOW B O B! You don't say

Gee B O B, this is hot stuff, right off the press.

B O B writes "It's Now Been admitted"

Who speaks like that?

You Bob, it's now been admitted you're a dork

Chevy

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Obama really is an arrogant egotistical person. His answer about when life begins showed his arrogance.....it was above his income level. What a smart aleck sob he is. Sometimes I really wonder whether he is a true Christian or just pretending to get votes.

Posted by: Intelligent Lady | August 17, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

NewsMichelle Shaniqua Obama got where she is today only because of affirmative action. Her ghetto credentials got her into the Ivy League - not her brains or lack thereof. Her Ghetto credentials would include lips that belong on a #2 treble hook, flaring nostrils and hips a water buffalo would be proud of.

Stold it Dianne baby!!

Sorrrry

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:27 PM | Report abuse

How come the anti Obama crowd emphasizes the Christian names of he and his wife so much? Are they really so shallow and stupid to think that someone's name would make a difference to the majority of the voting public? Well given that they voted Bush in for 2 terms, I'd have to say the answer to that is yes.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 9:26 PM | Report abuse

When left to his own vices we saw the church Hussein NObama chose.

The church of HATE!

NObama's church preached, Hate Whitey, Hate the Jew, and God D* America.

What kind of church repeatedly uses the LORD'S name in VAIN?

20 YEARS NObama attended this church of HATE and only left after he felt the heat!

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Are you a lezbo you are so obsessed with Mrs. Obama. I am sorry she is taken. By the way, why can't you spell anything correctly?

----------
Someone should coach Michelle Shaniqua Obama on poise and grace. Perhaps she should take elocution lessons. It would be be a great advantage for her husband if she could learn to supress her inner ghetto.

She would also benifit from a makeover. Her exagerated features and her amazonian stature make her appear mannish and awkward. When she speaks at the convention she should wear clothing that is slimming and something that doesn’t highlight her child-bearing hips.

Posted by: Dianne72 | August 17, 2008 9:16 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 9:22 PM | Report abuse

It's now admitted that McCain didn't arrive at the Saddleback Church forum until half hour after it started. He wasn't in a "cone of silence" at the beginning of the interview as stated. I guess Christian evangelicals can't be trusted anymore than Republicans can.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Porky Pig (NoBama) Running for President

What's this?

Ba-dee, ba-dee, ba-dee, ah, dah, um ya know um, um ah, uh, etc.

Hussein NObama trying to explain himself to questions he doesn't have a clue about.

When he does that, there's your sign, he's just making crap up as he goes along.

Chevy - ba-dee, ba-dee, ba-dee, Dat be all folks!

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:18 PM | Report abuse


Someone should coach Michelle Shaniqua Obama on poise and grace. Perhaps she should take elocution lessons. It would be be a great advantage for her husband if she could learn to supress her inner ghetto.

She would also benifit from a makeover. Her exagerated features and her amazonian stature make her appear mannish and awkward. When she speaks at the convention she should wear clothing that is slimming and something that doesn’t highlight her child-bearing hips.

Posted by: Dianne72 | August 17, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

For years, the mainstream news media has refused to stop idolizing the so-called straight talking maverick John McCain long enough to question the mental health consequences of the years he spent as a "special" prisoner of the communists in North Vietnam.

McCain, the presumptive Republican candidate for President, who could one day have his finger on the "red button," claims the communists subjected him to 5 ½ years of nonstop indoctrination sessions so intense that he attempted suicide.

Unfortunately for McCain, after his bomber was hit by anti-aircraft fire near Hanoi on October 26, 1967, he parachuted into the hands of an evil communist enemy who 7 years earlier had adopted Soviet methods of prisoner interrogation.

At that time, the Soviets were perfecting techniques designed "to put a man's mind into a fog so that he will mistake what is true for what is untrue, what is right for what is wrong, and come to believe what did not happen actually had happened."

Psychiatric Journals are flush with reports concluding that former POWs may remain entangled in "harsh psychological battles" with themselves for decades after returning home including difficulty in controlling intense emotions such as anger and stress.

In political circles, McCain, sometimes referred to as "insane McCain," is well known for having a "volcanic" temper which his colleagues say often erupts into vulgar language and personal insults.

Democrat Paul Johnson, the former mayor of Phoenix, experienced McCain's in your face temperament up close. "His volatility borders in the area of being unstable," Johnson said. "Before I let this guy put his finger on the button, I would have to give considerable pause."

The Journal of America Medicine reported in an 1996 article that being a former POW is associated with "increased cumulative incidence rates of chronic disorders of the peripheral nervous system, joints, and back and an increased hazard rate of peptic ulcer."

The 71 year-old McCain most certainly suffers pain and the weakening effects of chronic arthritis. He broke both arms when he was forced to eject after his bomber was hit. He says the Vietnamese periodically re-fractured his bones during years of interrogation and torture which rendered him permanently incapable of raising his arms above his head.

McCain has never been publicly vetted about what and how much medications he is taking. Aside from his anger and arthritic pain issues, McCain has had reoccurring bouts of malignant melanoma, a deadly form of cancer that can spread quickly throughout the body.

These facts alone beg the question on how a President McCain, in the absence of his campaign staff handlers, would deal with a snap decision that had to be made "if the White House phone rang at 3 a.m."

McCain's POW experience is unique. His communist captors considered him the "crown prince" of U.S. POWs because his father, Adm. John McCain, was commander of all U.S. forces fighting in Vietnam. Because the communists believed he was from a "royal family" and would when finally released return to the United States to an important military or government job, they held him for two years in "solitary confinement."

In February, Reuters news reported that McCain's former captors are expressing delight in the news of his nomination as Republican party Presidential candidate. "In the past Senator McCain has conducted activities that had a positive impact in bringing the two nations [Vietnam/United States] closer. That is a point that Vietnamese people who follow the current affairs do recognize," said retired North Vietnamese Colonel Nguyen Van Phuong, representing retired and present members of the Vietnamese communist military.

Since McCain was first elected to Congress 1982 (and later to the Senate), he and his staff have expended tens of thousands of hours pushing U.S. legislation favoring communist Vietnam. In 1995, McCain stood with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. to give President Bill Clinton valuable political cover he needed to disregard the issue of missing U.S. POWs in Vietnam and remove the U.S. trade embargo against Vietnam.

No U.S. POW had any communication with McCain or knew where he was being held during at least 8 to 12 months of McCain's first two years of captivity. He has either been unable or unwilling to account for the months he was missing from the POW system.

Within days of McCain's shoot down and after being told the identity of his famous father, the Vietnamese rushed him to Gai Lam military hospital (U.S. government documents), a medical facility normally unavailable to treat U.S. POWs. McCain was kept at Gai Lam for six weeks under the control of Soviet medical specialist anxious to test the use of their "mind and behavior modification" drugs on such an important prisoner.

McCain said the communists were so effective with their interrogation techniques that he broke on the fourth day after being captured and began cooperating. "Demands for military information were accompanied by threats to terminate my medical treatment if I [McCain] did not cooperate. Eventually, I gave them my ship's name and squadron number, and confirmed that my target had been the power plant." Pages 193-194, Faith of My Fathers, by John McCain.

U.S. intelligence agents concluded in the early 1950s that Soviet intelligence (KGB) agents were experimenting on their prisoners with "mind control" techniques and behavior modification drugs

Allen W. Dulles, the newly confirmed CIA director acknowledged the dilemma in April 1953, when he told a gathering of Princeton alumni that "a sinister battle for men's minds" was underway. The Soviets, Dulles explained "have developed brain perversion techniques, some of which are so subtle and so abhorrent to our way of life that we have recoiled from facing up to them."

During the Cold War, the Soviets and the CIA began competing with secret experiments on prisoners aimed at honing the use of "chemical and biological materials capable of producing human behavioral and physiological changes." The experiments included isolation, sleep deprivation, humiliation, alternating with long hours of interrogation.

Since the Russians and Chinese (and our own CIA) have proven they can in a relative short time alter the basic emotional and behavior patterns of captives, it is fair to assume that McCain's unpredictable and often volatile temperament is directly related to his treatment as a 5 ½ prisoner of the communists.

The American public was first exposed to Soviet "brain perversion techniques" during Korean War when the communists launched a propaganda offensive featuring filmed and recorded testimony of captured U.S. servicemen confessing to war crimes including the use of germ warfare.

By the end of the Korean War, "70 percent of the 7,190 U.S. prisoners held in China had either made confessions or signed petitions calling for an end to the American war effort in Asia. Fifteen percent collaborated fully with the Chinese, and only 5 percent steadfastly resisted."

Military officials were especially alarmed when a significant number of the U.S. prisoners refused to recant their confessions as soon as they returned to the United States.

Beginning in 1960, KGB and Chinese agents directed the Vietnamese in establishing Vietnam's original interrogation guidelines for U.S. prisoners. They suggested interrogation techniques and issued specific intelligence requirements to be extracted during prisoner interrogations.

Official American position on POW confessions was that they were false and forced while privately expressing grave concern that the collaborations proved the communists had developed techniques that could "put a man's mind into a fog."

Psychologist have identified behavior in which a former prisoner emotionally bonds with an abuser as the Stockholm Syndrome. McCain was a strong advocate for prosecuting Bosnian, Yugoslavian and Iraqi war criminals and is adamantly opposed to any form of normalized relation with Cuba until it allows "free elections, human right organizations and a free and independent media."

Yet, McCain has resisted any kind of war crimes investigation of his former Vietnamese torturers. Prosecution and subsequent trials could bring to justice the Vietnamese torturers known by the American POWs as the Bug, Slopehead, the Prick, the Soft Soap Fairy, Rabbit, the Cat, Zorba and many others who were responsible for the murder in North Vietnam of at least 55 U.S. POWs and the brutal torture of hundreds of others.

In November 1991, Tracy Usry, chief investigator of the Minority Staff of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, testified before the Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs, that the Soviets interrogated U.S. prisoners of war in Vietnam. McCain became outraged, interrupting Usry several times, arguing that "none of the returned U.S. prisoners of war released by Vietnam were ever interrogated by the Soviets."

Former KGB Maj. Gen. Oleg Kalugin testified during the hearings that the KGB did interrogate U.S. POWs in Vietnam. Kalugin stated that one of the POWs worked on by the KGB was a "high-ranking naval officer," who, according to Kalugin, agreed to work with the Soviets upon his repatriation to the United States and has frequently appeared on U.S. television.

Col. Bui Tin, a former Senior Colonel in the North Vietnamese Army, testified on the same day, but after Usry, that because of his high position in the Communist Party during the war he had the authority to "read all documents and secret telegrams from the politburo" pertaining to American prisoners of war. He said that not only did the Soviets interrogate some American prisoners of war, but that they treated the Americans very badly.

McCain stunned onlookers at the hearing when he moved to the witness table and physically embraced Col. Tin as if he was a long, lost brother.

In 1949 Dr. Andrew Salter authored Conditioned Reflex Therapy, a pioneering work in the field of psychoanalysis. Ten years later, as Richard Condon was writing The Manchurian Candidate, he asked Dr. Salter to help "design" the brainwashed character for the book and subsequent movie.

More than 40 years later, in 1992, during the C-SPAN broadcasts of the Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs, Dr. Salter watched the hearings from his New York City apartment. Salter became fascinated with McCain's overly aggressive and angry behavior toward witnesses, especially family members of men still missing in action. After a few hours he called a friend telling her, "the signs are all there, I'm afraid Senator John McCain has been brainwashed."

During the Senate Select hearings, McCain opposed all efforts by the POW/MIA families and activists to have the Select Committee expand its investigation to study how successful the Vietnamese, Soviet, Chinese and Cuban interrogation apparatuses were at exploiting American prisoners of war.

News pundants have elevated McCain to "the most popular national political figure in the country" by repeatedly describing him as a "war hero" based on his refusal accept a communist offer of "early release" from captivity.

What the media has carelessly refused to acknowledge is that the camp's senior ranking U.S. POW (SRO) had issued unquestionable orders that if a POW was to be released, "it would be the longest held prisoner" Because McCain was not the longest held POW, he would have faced a military court-marshal if he had accepted the offer.

It is incumbent upon McCain to prove to the American people that the 5 1/2 years he spent at the mercy of communist interrogators did not leave him with mental health issues that could hinder him in making snap decisions "if the White House phone rang at 3 a.m."

Is McCain taking any kind of pain or "nerve" medicines? If so, do the medicines cause emotional and physical reactions?

McCain was once treated for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) which is said to get worse over time for former POWs, what is the status of his treatment?

Does McCain still harbor stress triggered suicidal tendencies?

Where was McCain and what was happening to him during the months he was missing from the POW camp?

McCain implies that he made only one propaganda broadcast for the communists, but Senate Foreign Relations Committee staffers say he made over 30. How many did he make and what did he get in return?

Why does McCain still deny that the Soviets were involved in the interrogation of U.S. POWs in Vietnam?

Does McCain's former interrogators, the communist Vietnamese, Russians, Chinese and Cubans have anything in their secret intelligence files about his behavior as a prisoner with which they could blackmail a President John McCain?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Picture it, Trinity Church 2006. Michelle Shiniqua Obama is speaking from the pulpit. Her prominent nostrils are flared, brow furrowed, and a scowl across her face. She is ranting against "whitey" and how they keep "raising the bar". All the while punching the air with a fist-bump. This my friends is what we will see in October when they release her "whitey-gate" tapes on YouTube.

Posted by: Dianne72 | August 17, 2008 9:13 PM | Report abuse

When will Obama address the plight of black victimization and self-destruction, and how immigration is destroying the black lower class? Black leaders like Wright and Jackson do nothing constructive and play on racial anger and hatred. While the Latinos, Orientals, and East European immigrants are integrating and succeeding in American life, the black underclass sinks deeper and deeper into violence, dispair and poverty. A whole generation of young blacks are being destroyed and none of the black politicians say anything constructive in this regard. The whole question about Obama is what does he have as a solution, and as far as I can see, beyond the charm and articulate delivery, he has no solutions.

Posted by: Rocco | August 17, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

To the White Race

My Grandmother is a “typical White Person” Barry Hussein Nobama 3/21/2008.

Like it or not, that is a RACIST remark against the White race by Barry NoBama.

Please explain to me how you can support this racist after he “SPIT” in your face?

I really do need to understand how you can support someone who just hucked a luggi at your entire family.

Why isn’t the Washington post demanding he clarify his racist remark?

Chevy – Educated Redneck

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 9:00 PM | Report abuse

McCain is obsessed by memories of an old war and visions of new ones. He is a scary old man.

Posted by: Bad Idea | August 17, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

The difference between being elected to serve as pastor in a right wing church and president of the united states has never been more illusive than in this saddlebag non-encounter of the candidates. visit the Church of the Immaculate Misconception http://www,saintpeterii.com

Posted by: Saint Peter II | August 17, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Great News! Barry NObama is not BLACK!

Took a color pic of it to a friend who works at a paint store at Home Depot and had his true color analyzed.

Barry Hussein is Navajo Brown.

So some of you racist DEMS can now realax knowing he's not black.

Chevy

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Dem now IND

when have you ever heard a single hateful thing out of Obama's mouth? When have you hear a report from anyone who has ever known him to say that he has EVER said anything hateful ever?

stop

This spin is done... and mccain has lived around and hung out with some really bad slimey politicians for years and years.

That does not mean he is a slimey politician.

argue on facts...and keep your feet in reality.

all this other spin doesn't help anyone.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Per the CNN interview w/Pastor Warren, it sounds like McCain cheated- he wasn't in any "cone of silence" after all-- explains why he had so many pat stump-style answers ready to go, and in some cases answered the question before Warren finished asking it! Shame on you McCain for cheating!

Posted by: Ruth | August 17, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA'S DEMEANOR: WHY SO SERENE? DOES HE KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT THE HILLARY PUTSCH THAT THE PUNDITS HAVE YET TO FIGURE OUT?

• Key clue: "Americans will get the president that they need." Maybe Barack wasn't talking about himself...


First impressions here last night were that Obama got snaked again.

Today we learn that McCain was not in a "cone of silence," but in his motorcade. So when he asked the pulpit puppetmaster about a line of questioning that hadn't come up, he revealed that the forum was a fraud.

Why should a book-hawking mega-preacher command such a national political stage? His questions were loaded, and Obama once again demonstrated his naivete by agreeing to appear when the fix already was in. At the very least, he should have insisted the candidates share the stage, with an opportunity for rebuttal.

Obama came out of this charade with as much as could be expected under the rigged circumstances. His supposed gaffe on the abortion question, when viewed through the eyes of his disillusioned base, reinforced the notion that he is capable of resisting his recent penchant for pandering. His comments about habeus corpus and restoring the rule of law showed that he's cognizant of the need to show some adherence to principle.

Obama's demeanor belied any sense that he's panicked about his sagging poll numbers or Hillary's roll call putsch, a trojan horse that's likely to make her the convention kingmaker (with Bill supplying the stage whispers).

Indeed, Obama's serene persona could signal that he's already signed on a deal that will hand the nomination to Al Gore, with both he and Hillary posing as noble warriors who dueled to a tie. Didn't I hear Obama say during the Saddlebrook event that the nation "will get the President it needs"? Perhaps he was not referring to himself.

And did not Obama confess to the sin of vanity, in so many words? Analyze Obama's words through the prism of what the psy-ops units call "neurolinguistic programming." (It's a pseudo-science, so by definition, it is predictive 50 percent of the time.) Perhaps Obama was sending signals about a preordained outcome that's far removed from the conventional wisdom.

The tracking polls coming out this week will reflect Obama's sagging fortunes, and McCain's surprisingly robust, if pandering, performance before his minion the Rev. Warren. Obama's veepee pick will dominate the news, but it could turn out to be irrelevant in the face of the trojan horse roll call. It is Obama who could turn out to be the vice presidential candidate in this cycle, as party leaders attempt to right a past wrong by putting Al Gore back in the White House.


BUT WILL THE ELECTION EVEN MATTER? Not when government-supported "vigilante injustice" squads are bypassing the judicial system to terrorize American citizens:
http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism

Posted by: scrivener | August 17, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Why does the Washington Post allow people, such as above, to post false statements that should be well known to the WP as false. Obviously false statements are "inappropriate" and indeed could be viewed as obscenity, since obscenity is "something disgusting to the senses" per Merriam Webster.

Anyway, for the uninformed or liars who still spew the line that Obama's birth certificate is not public, that's false. An image of it is posted on Obamaa's website. If you are msarter than John McCain and so you know how to use Google effectively (he doesn't -see http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/03/weekinreview/03leibovich.html), then go to:

http://my.barackobama.com/page/invite/birthcert

Posted by: Kirk | August 17, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Well, hold the presses on that "passed without incident" idea.

It turns out that everyone was so impressed with McCain's quick, snappy answers for a reason: He very likely knew the questions beforehand. Whereas Obama didn't, which would explain why he had to actually think about the responses, which so many are criticizing.

What's clear is this: When the pastor claimed "McCain is in isolation so he can't hear the questions" that wasn't true. McCain wasn't there yet.

So at worst, the whole thing was a complete fix, the pastor lied, and it was all to make McCain look good. At best, the pastor "misspoke" about the isolation thing and we have to believe McCain's camp that they "didn't listen to Obama's segment" even though none of them were in isolation.

So let's see, Obama is the front runner, he's their rival, and they didn't listen to his questioning in the first joint appearance. They just talked amongst themselves, no one listened or even say, oh, took notes. And of COURSE they didn't feed any of these questions to McCain before he arrived, or when he arrived.

Right.

This may end up backfiring on McCain in a very bad way. Warren lying about the isolation is the bad part, first of all, he could have just told the truth. This makes him look skewed. Then the McCain camp claiming "we didn't listen", yeesh.

This could be fun.

Posted by: Timelagged | August 17, 2008 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Its a pretty sad day when candidates for president of the U.S. have to be vetted on Christ's influence on their lives...

Posted by: scrapster | August 17, 2008 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Obama is a fraud.
He speaks "Unity" of all people and races, but listened and followed hate and racism for 20 YEARS. He is the very worst kind of divider of people.

Why would anyone vote for Obama as the LEADER of ALL AMERICANS when his ACTIONS were of hate toward the majority of Americans?

Have we lost our mind? Where is our sense of equality? Our judgement?
Or is "HATE" now cool?

Posted by: DEM now IND | August 17, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

md83

If Jesus were alive ...he'd be a liberal.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

I can see that there are many questions that are beyond Obama's "pay grade" for him to answer. One is why he sat in a racist, America hating church for 20 years. Another is how he used Rezko to get a sweetheart real estate deal followed up by a sweetheart land swap. Another is why he was chummy with a self admitted terrorist, William Ayers. Another is why he let his daughters be exposed to Marxist based Black Liberation Theology.

It looks like he needs to stay in this lower pay grade he occupies until he has a better education to make the decisions a president has to make on a daily basis. He once again proved he is nothing more than an empty suit and has no experience to qualify him for the job of president. McCain wiped the floor with him last night.

Posted by: obiewan | August 17, 2008 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Chevy - Educated Redneck - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News -

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Chevy - Chickenhawk - Cluck, cluck, cluck, cluck!

Posted by: AugustWest1 | August 17, 2008 8:38 PM | Report abuse

McCain's POW story, about Christmas.

I am pretty sure I heard that before, from another politician.

Is there any way to prove it happened, or is McCain telling a tall tale that he know can't be verified?


A man who would cheat on his wife would lie to become president.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Where John Mccain plagiarized his cross in the sand story. The old man has been telling the BS story he no longer knows if it even actually happened to him or not.
see below


Along with other prisoners, he worked in the fields day after day, in rain and sun, during summer and winter. His life appeared to be nothing more than backbreaking labor and slow starvation. The intense suffering reduced him to a state of despair.

On one particular day, the hopelessness of his situation became too much for him. He saw no reason to continue his struggle, no reason to keep on living. His life made no difference in the world. So he gave up.

Leaving his shovel on the ground, he slowly walked to a crude bench and sat down. He knew that at any moment a guard would order him to stand up, and when he failed to respond, the guard would beat him to death, probably with his own shovel. He had seen it happen to other prisoners.

As he waited, head down, he felt a presence. Slowly he looked up and saw a skinny old prisoner squat down beside him. The man said nothing. Instead, he used a stick to trace in the dirt the sign of the Cross. The man then got back up and returned to his work.

As Solzhenitsyn stared at the Cross drawn in the dirt his entire perspective changed. He knew he was only one man against the all-powerful Soviet empire. Yet he knew there was something greater than the evil he saw in the prison camp, something greater than the Soviet Union. He knew that hope for all people was represented by that simple Cross. Through the power of the Cross, anything was possible.

Solzhenitsyn slowly rose to his feet, picked up his shovel, and went back to work. Outwardly, nothing had changed. Inside, he had received hope.


So, it is very interesting that Mr. Solzhenitsyn and Mr. McCain had the same Christian guard/prisoner experience. Or maybe it is all just a made up story. Somehow I doubt that Alexander Solzhenitsyn heard John McCain's story and copied it.

This story was actually excerpted from "The Gulag Archipelago" by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, which was released in the US in 1973.

UPDATE X2: It seems that McCain is a bit of a Solzhenitsyn fan, as evidenced in his article in the NY Sun . It leaves little doubt Mccain stole the story from Solzhenitsyn

http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/


Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 5:53 PM

Posted by: AugustWest1 | August 17, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Once again, the media spin and bluster Obama's performance to be better than it was, and McCain's to be worse.

Obama was clearly evasive, ungrounded and scrambled for answers. From his "above my pay grade" to his lame, fumbling performance explaining what evil is and what to do about it, Obama was a C-minus. McCain performed above all expectations and was warmly successful with the crowd and those who watched.

But you wouldn't know how lame and hollow Obama's performance was, or how articulate, decisive and grounded McCain's was, by reading or hearing the accounts of it.

Definitely, watch this for yourself, before taking other people's word for it. It's just like the 22 primary debates, all of which which Obama lost but never got reported as such.

If only the man that the media is in love with, really existed.

Posted by: AsperGirl
--------------------
Senator Obama actually THINKS before he responds. Senator McCain blurts out the first thing that comes to his mind. That is the big difference between the two candidates. Senator Obama took the questions seriously, the questions were not easy but required thought. I want a president who will "weigh" the issues before he makes a decision. McCain does NOT weigh the issues, he merely utters the first thing that hits his demented brain. I don't believe McCain KNOWS how to think. I am so tired of him talking about his POW years...those were 35 years ago. I am inclined to believe McCain is still living in the world of the 60s and 70s. Even the music that is played on his snobbish and dispicable ADs is outdated!! McCain has made no effort to get in tune with the rest of us....does NOT know how to use a computer, Doesn't know how to communicate via E-Mail. When he wants to read something in the news on the computer, you will hear him shouting, "Hey, you 'c**t' come here and turn on your computer, take me to the stock market and he looks at that for about 10 minutes, soon he hear him again and the same thing, this goes back and forth for the better of the evening. When McCain is through reading all he wants to read, he calls for Cindy again, "Hey, you trollop, get over here and turn the damned computer off!" But by now, McCain's joints have become somewhat stiff, so he hollers at Cindy to help him to his Lazy Boy with the massage mechanism, he leans heavily on her until she helps him into the chair. Poor Cindy, gets treated like a submordinate and McCain is so disrespectful to her!! Did you hear, he volunteered her and urged her to complete in the Buffalo Chips Beauty Contest!! He said he'd be thrilled to see Cindy as first lady and as the Buffalo Chips Beauty Queen at the same time. The contestants in the "pageant" wear next to nothing, some topless, and simulate oral sex with a banana!! Way to go McCain!! And YOU think you are presidential material??? McCain not only disrespects Cindy, he disrespects ALL women as well. McCain is a pervert!! Anybody remember Bill and the cigars in the Oval Office, and oh, yes, the young intern?? We do not need another pervert in the White House, only this time it would be McCain and the bananas in the Oval Office and......??

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

McCain is four more years of Bush. Why do we need that?

Posted by: AugustWest1 | August 17, 2008 8:33 PM | Report abuse

McCain is four more years of Bush. Why do we need that?

Posted by: AugustWest1 | August 17, 2008 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Obama’s decision to speak out against the war in Iraq in October 2002 was “the most gut wrenching decision” he’s ever made? While running unopposed for re-election to the Illinois State Senate in a district that votes 90% Democratic? In a city that was preparing to give 82% of its votes to the most vocal opponent of the build-up to the war in the United States Senate at the time (Dick Durbin)? Please. If not for "the fairy tale," it should have been the easiest call he ever made.

Posted by: Bum Chicken | August 17, 2008 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Today Muslim Racist Nobama says open oil reservers.

Yesterday it was go to the gas station and fill up with AIR

Tomorrow it will be pull out the old Schwin Bike.

What an idiot.

Chevy - Educated Redneck

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 8:29 PM | Report abuse



www.POCM.INFO

Posted by: Bruce | August 17, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

I am one of those undecided voters who is weighing the substance of each candidate's answers. My decision will be influenced some by the substance of their answers to questions. A large portion of my decision is influenced by whether the question is actually answered. I may not agree with the answer, but at least I know the question was answered. Right, wrong, or indifferent, one candidate answered the question. The other one chose to dance around it. I cannot vote for a person whose pay grade does not include answering the question.

Posted by: Billie Blanco | August 17, 2008 8:26 PM | Report abuse

McCain's POW story, about Christmas.

I am pretty sure I heard that before, from another politician.

Is there any way to prove it happened, or is McCain telling a tall tale that he know can't be verified?


A man who would cheat on his wife would lie to become president.

Posted by: Peter | August 17, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

ohmygosh i have never felt so nauseous as when I heard these two pandering to a bunch of delusioned sheep who think we get our morals from an invisible dictator that has 5 billions cameras in the sky and watches our every move and knows our every thought. couldnt expect less from mccain, that sinner who cheated on his wife and sold out like a youknowwhat to the highest lobbyst bidder as U.S. senator...but obama? its a shame, i know they have to claim to be "religious" tp get the support of these sheep and thats sad...i mean look at our current 2-term presidnet put in office by the god people...yeah what a great job god did with that one! but these sheep cant think for themselves so here we go again...a sad day in america, the first secular country in the world...

Posted by: omar | August 17, 2008 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Anyone but me wondering who McCain's source is?
McCain went on Letterman Oct 2001, and said he has a "source" tells him that the IRAQI's did the anthrax attack.

When is McCain going to say, "I led you all to war in IRAQ over WMDs that dont exist".? McCain committed a crime, to lead the USA to war based on HIS false propaganda.

Posted by: Bruce | August 17, 2008 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Nobama - Why didn't you bother to see American wounded troops in Germany who are doing what America asked of them?

You were over there Obama.

You didn't have time to see our wounded and dying men in uniform fighting for the country you want to be president of?

You really are one sick SOB. The lowest of the lows

Make no mistake, in my book you're a maggot.

Chevy - Educated Redneck - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News -

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 8:21 PM | Report abuse

I will do all in my power to see he's defeated and defeated soundly

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:00 PM

And I will be out here doing everything in MY power to make sure knuckle-dragging morons like you have no power. For every vote You cast I will walk and register 3 more Democrats. For every dollar you donate....I will raise MORE money. For every hate-filled, racists post you make...I'll turn over a trailer and make you homeless. John McCain is a doddering old, hateful angry war-monger and should not be allowed to govern an outhouse.

Posted by: TJ in LA | August 17, 2008 8:20 PM | Report abuse

MCCain: no abortions, we need those kids to join the army.
then they can die in some WTO control-freak war in Africa.

Posted by: Bruce | August 17, 2008 8:19 PM | Report abuse

I am a conservative Christian (registered GOP) who was undecided, until yesterday.

I oppose abortion like many others. I wish there weren't a need for any. And I do believe there will come a day. But prohibitions (on booze or pot) do not work.

John McCain feels that Christians such as myself are too stupid to see beyond that one issue. So he continually panders to it.

McCain is saying NO to abortion, but he is also saying NO to affordable healthcare, NO to protecting the environment, NO to taking care of the underpriviledged.

I think the need to protect the planet and protect America are far more important.

WWJD? I think Jesus would be all for helping those in need, rather than making them criminals.

Posted by: Mac | August 17, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

NObama - Why did you spit in the face of our wounded and dying soldiers when you kipped a planned meeting at the Landstuhl Military Hospital.

you were two miles away from them NObama.

Have you any idea what's it's like to lay in bed just having your legs amputated?

Spinal wounds that will never make love to a woman again?

How could you NObama

How could you be so low as to diss america's wounded you want to command.

You set some example of what the future holds for our armed forces if your ilk ever gets elected.

You make me SICK!

Chevy

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 8:17 PM | Report abuse

What's this about McCain hearing the questions beforehand?
Is this not an unconscious admission that he fared far better than "thoughtful" Obama (who should go back to the classroom -- with his impractical advisors, of the bumbling Rice school -- and leave the EXECUTIVE office for men who intertwine thought and action).

Posted by: Victor | August 17, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

To NinaK, I agree you hit the nail on the head.I still want to know if McSenile knows how to get Bin-Laden , why hasn't he told any one? After all it's been seven years.I still believe Obama was set up by the good pastor and McSenile campaign.Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

If the posts on this board prove anything, it's that many Dem Libbies... a true godless liberal. It rankles and it shows.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:23 PM
___________________________________________
Wow! You're good! Diagnosing and prescribing just what we libs need. You're better than bush. You can look into the monitor, just like bush looked in putin's eyes and see our souls. Boy, THAT sure worked out, huh? I'm curious, though... all you he-man pontificators with your stern jawline(pretty saggy in mccain's case) are ready and able to spring into action and conquer all the ills of mankind. Why didn't you? Years of unchecked power, all three branches of government, and what do we have? And since we all have to look up to you high minded moralists, just which of your postings on here are more God-like that I should emulate? Your postings on wine quality? Are you an expert on that as well? You know all there is to know about economics, foreign relations, and especially what we libs are REALLY saying even though something else was said. Where does it end? You champions of the REAL America in a simpler time, when mccain was young, would have us all without ANY voice.

Posted by: md83 | August 17, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Apparently McCain knew the questions in advance as well as giving stump-speeches when he wasn't supposed to, as someone here pointed out. Please investigate, dear Mr Fix! It sounds 'huge '!

Posted by: capilony the IIIrd | August 17, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

From NYT 8-17-08

McCain never called for Donald Rumsfeld to be fired and didn’t start criticizing the war plan until late August 2003, nearly four months after “Mission Accomplished.” By then the growing insurgency was undeniable. On the day Hurricane Katrina hit, McCain laughed it up with the oblivious president at a birthday photo-op in Arizona. McCain didn’t get to New Orleans for another six months and didn’t sharply express public criticism of the Bush response to the calamity until this April, when he traveled to the Gulf Coast in desperate search of election-year pageantry surrounding him with black extras.

McCain long ago embraced the right’s agents of intolerance, even spending months courting the Rev. John Hagee, whose fringe views about Roman Catholics and the Holocaust were known to anyone who can use the Internet. (Once the McCain campaign discovered YouTube, it ditched Hagee.) On Monday McCain is scheduled to appear at an Atlanta fund-raiser being promoted by Ralph Reed, who is not only the former aide de camp to one of the agents of intolerance McCain once vilified (Pat Robertson) but is also the former Abramoff acolyte showcased in McCain’s own Senate investigation of Indian casino lobbying.

Though the McCain campaign announced a new no-lobbyists policy three months after The Washington Post’s February report that lobbyists were “essentially running” the whole operation, the fact remains that McCain’s top officials and fund-raisers have past financial ties to nearly every domestic and foreign flashpoint, from Fannie Mae to Blackwater to Ahmad Chalabi to the government of Georgia. No sooner does McCain flip-flop on oil drilling than a bevy of Hess Oil family members and executives, not to mention a lowly Hess office manager and his wife, each give a maximum $28,500 to the Republican Party.

While reporters at The Post and The New York Times have been vetting McCain, many others give him a free pass. Their default cliché is to present him as the Old Faithful everyone already knows. They routinely salute his “independence,” his “maverick image” and his “renegade reputation” — as the hackneyed script was reiterated by Karl Rove in a Wall Street Journal op-ed column last week. At Talking Points Memo, the essential blog vigilantly pursuing the McCain revelations often ignored elsewhere, Josh Marshall accurately observes that the Republican candidate is “graded on a curve.”

Most Americans still don’t know, as Marshall writes, that on the campaign trail “McCain frequently forgets key elements of policies, gets countries’ names wrong, forgets things he’s said only hours or days before and is frequently just confused.” Most Americans still don’t know it is precisely for this reason that the McCain campaign has now shut down the press’s previously unfettered access to the candidate on the Straight Talk Express.

To appreciate the discrepancy in what we know about McCain and Obama, merely look at the coverage of the potential first ladies. We have heard too much indeed about Michelle Obama’s Princeton thesis, her pay raises at the University of Chicago hospital, her statement about being “proud” of her country and the false rumor of a video of her ranting about “whitey.” But we still haven’t been inside Cindy McCain’s tax returns, all her multiple homes or private plane. The Los Angeles Times reported in June that Hensley & Company, the enormous beer distributorship she controls, “lobbies regulatory agencies on alcohol issues that involve public health and safety,” in opposition to groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving. The McCain campaign told The Times that Mrs. McCain’s future role in her beer empire won’t be revealed before the election.

Some of those who know McCain best — Republicans — are tougher on him than the press is. Rita Hauser, who was a Bush financial chairwoman in New York in 2000 and served on the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board in the administration’s first term, joined other players in the G.O.P. establishment in forming Republicans for Obama last week. Why? The leadership qualities she admires in Obama — temperament, sustained judgment, the ability to play well with others — are missing in McCain. “He doesn’t listen carefully to people and make reasoned judgments,” Hauser told me. “If John says ‘I’m going with so and so,’ you can’t count on that the next morning,” she complained, adding, “That’s not the man we want for president.”

McCain has even prompted alarms from the right’s own favorite hit man du jour: Jerome Corsi, who Swift-boated John Kerry as co-author of “Unfit to Command” in 2004 and who is trying to do the same to Obama in his newly minted best seller, “The Obama Nation.”

Corsi’s writings have been repeatedly promoted by Sean Hannity on Fox News; Corsi’s publisher, Mary Matalin, has praised her author’s “scholarship.” If Republican warriors like Hannity and Matalin think so highly of Corsi’s research into Obama, then perhaps we should take seriously Corsi’s scholarship about McCain. In recent articles at worldnetdaily.com, Corsi has claimed (among other charges) that the McCain campaign received “strong” financial support from a “group tied to Al Qaeda” and that “McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”

Posted by: JAC | August 17, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

If you think America is uncivil and deeply divided in this final year of Cheney/Bush reign, try putting in their THIRD term.
America will rip apart at the seams.

Posted by: mark | August 17, 2008 8:12 PM | Report abuse

BillR wrote:

His answer was about sacrifice. That (energy in particular) some of the big issues we face will take everyone pitching in... that governement cannot manage addressing climate change on it's own. The generation of WWII had made huge sacrifices for future generations and that we can do the same.

DaTourist replied:

Yes, Bill, but Obama has never demonstrated even one example of personal sacrifice in his entire life of 47 years.

It seems that Obama wants Americans to sacrifice by giving up cheap gasoline and oil, the very commodities that have made a good life for all Americans, even poor Americans.

Obama, like Gore, wants me to sacrifice, but has never sacrificed himself, and never will, unless it's a former friend who becomes a political liability, like Jeremiah Wright, Michael Phlegar, Jesse Jackson, Kwame Kilpatrick, or Bernie Mac.

All of Obama's sacrifices seem to go under the wheels of the bus!

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 8:10 PM | Report abuse

While the forum was useful, and the questions were generally good, it also showed the value of a head-to-head debate. Many of the assertions by both candidates went uncontested, when many (particularly from McCain, in my view) needed clarification at the very least, and in the case of McCain, were logically inconsistent or didn't add up mathematically.

For example, McCain at various points promised to lower taxes, reduce spending, continue the Iraq War, promote energy exploration, and finally, to defeat evil wherever it exists. All of these points received raucous applause from the crowd. Of course, Obama was not there to point out the obvious difficulty if not inconsistency in simultaneously achieving all these otherwise laudable goals, and Warren had made the decision to not overly inject himself into the proceedings.

Posted by: Gene L | August 17, 2008 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Where John Mccain plagiarized his cross in the sand story. The old man has been telling the BS story he no longer knows if it even actually happened to him or not.
see below


Along with other prisoners, he worked in the fields day after day, in rain and sun, during summer and winter. His life appeared to be nothing more than backbreaking labor and slow starvation. The intense suffering reduced him to a state of despair.

On one particular day, the hopelessness of his situation became too much for him. He saw no reason to continue his struggle, no reason to keep on living. His life made no difference in the world. So he gave up.

Leaving his shovel on the ground, he slowly walked to a crude bench and sat down. He knew that at any moment a guard would order him to stand up, and when he failed to respond, the guard would beat him to death, probably with his own shovel. He had seen it happen to other prisoners.

As he waited, head down, he felt a presence. Slowly he looked up and saw a skinny old prisoner squat down beside him. The man said nothing. Instead, he used a stick to trace in the dirt the sign of the Cross. The man then got back up and returned to his work.

As Solzhenitsyn stared at the Cross drawn in the dirt his entire perspective changed. He knew he was only one man against the all-powerful Soviet empire. Yet he knew there was something greater than the evil he saw in the prison camp, something greater than the Soviet Union. He knew that hope for all people was represented by that simple Cross. Through the power of the Cross, anything was possible.

Solzhenitsyn slowly rose to his feet, picked up his shovel, and went back to work. Outwardly, nothing had changed. Inside, he had received hope.

So, it is very interesting that Mr. Solzhenitsyn and Mr. McCain had the same Christian guard/prisoner experience. Or maybe it is all just a made up story. Somehow I doubt that Alexander Solzhenitsyn heard John McCain's story and copied it.

This story was actually excerpted from "The Gulag Archipelago" by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, which was released in the US in 1973.

UPDATE X2: It seems that McCain is a bit of a Solzhenitsyn fan, as evidenced in his article in the NY Sun . It leaves little doubt Mccain stole the story from Solzhenitsyn

http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/

-----------
McCain's original accounts of his time in Vietnam say that the only guard he considered to be remotely humane worked at a different jail from the one McCain would've been at at the time that he now says his cross-in-the-sand experience took place. Of course, he also never told the story in public until 1999 -- three decades after the incident supposedly happened. Add in his apparent interest in Solzhenitsyn's work, and it seems pretty clear to me that the story is a figment of his imagination.

McCain is a nice old man, but he's not in the kind of mental condition it takes to run the free world. He's simply lost the ability to think critically about what his memory and what other people tell him.

Posted by: davestickler | August 17, 2008 8:05 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

McCain's original accounts of his time in Vietnam say that the only guard he considered to be remotely humane worked at a different jail from the one McCain would've been at at the time that he now says his cross-in-the-sand experience took place. Of course, he also never told the story in public until 1999 -- three decades after the incident supposedly happened. Add in his apparent interest in Solzhenitsyn's work, and it seems pretty clear to me that the story is a figment of his imagination.

McCain is a nice old man, but he's not in the kind of mental condition it takes to run the free world. He's simply lost the ability to think critically about what his memory and what other people tell him.

Posted by: davestickler | August 17, 2008 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Why can't we have a rapture now dear God and rid the earth of these fascists who dictate how we should live our lives. ..Does anyone out there feel our right to be free from religion has been violated ? When we elect an atheist to the white house the country will improve and we can seriously do the work Christ had intended us to do.I will follow Bin Laden to the gates of hell? John:why did you send the bulk of are troops to Iraq?Get a map.

Posted by: joseph marcucilli | August 17, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 7:53 PM

________________________

Reply:

Your post was one of the few intelligent post I've read on this blog in the past hour.

Cause the Zanie's are out today.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

So McCain thinks earning "five million a year" qualifies you as rich. That means he thinks someone earning $1 million a year is barely getting by.

Only in the McCain world of EIGHT multi-million dollar mansions, $500 Italian loafers, and $750,000 spent on the credit cards each month...is earning $1 million a year chump change.

What an elitist jerk.

Posted by: wilder5121 | August 17, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Henry wrote:

I was very impressed with Obama's thoughtful and thought provoking answers.

DaTourist replied:

Is a Presidential candidate supposed to provoke thoughts about what he means, or just tell us straightaway what he means?

Henry wrote:

McCain sounded too much like Bush.

DaTourist replied:

As an Evangelical Christian, that seems to me to be an endorsement of McCain, whom many have seen as too lukewarm to be a Christian, but your perception may be more accurate.

Henry wrote:

Obama had more substance in one sentence than McCain said all night.

DaTourist wrote:

What was that sentence, dear Henry?

Henry wrote:

But he made you think and that's a problem for many people it seems.

DaTourist replied:

Presidential candidate Obama's job is to answer questions, not puzzle the American people about where he stands on the issues. It makes us feel like Obama doesn't really know where he stands, and is not up to the task of being President.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 8:01 PM | Report abuse

I am struck by the fact that Pastor Warren said Obama was going first because of a coin toss. If McSenile was not even at the church how did they toss the coin?I have lost all respect for Warren for lying.McSenile and his advisor's were on there blacberries lets face it. Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 8:00 PM | Report abuse

I was very happy to hear Obama's final answer when Rick Warren asked him about what news he would like to deliver to the American people even if it was unpopular. (I'm paraphrasing the question.)

His answer was about sacrifice. That (energy in particular) some of the big issues we face will take everyone pitching in... that governement cannot manage addressing climate change on it's own. The generation of WWII had made huge sacrifices for future generations and that we can do the same.

The language used by Obama around being willing to work together towards a common goal of a better planet, or better healthcare, or more tolerance has always apealled to me... it is the type of morality that policiticans have not talked about in past decades. Its why he will get my vote.

The issues Evangelical Christians have chosen to address in the past decades seem very introverted and small to me... cultural conformity, right-to-life, restrictions on marriage. I appreciate pastors like Rick Warren broadening the discussion to poverty, human trafficking, climate change, AIDS.... It seems to me that Democrats are equally and often much more interested in these broader moral questions of human welfare. Obama seems as thoughtful and well spoken as any candidate on these type of questions.

I was also pleased to hear Obama give Bush his positive reviews on his efforts to address AIDS in Africa. We need politicians who judge policy on whether it is right and good, and not just have a negative knee jerk response to work of the opposite party.

Posted by: BillR | August 17, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton raised taxes his first year in office and we were not at war.

Today we have a deficit in the trillions of dollars as a result of the war in Iraq.

Therefore, who ever wins this election, will raise taxes.

One candidate might fool you by letting a year slip by before they do it and the other candidate will probably do it sooner if possible.

Posted by: ph | August 17, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Here's how Obama's Saddleback interview will change Democrat politics for all time to come!

Just as the Dukakis statement on capital punishment changed Democrat rhetoric for all time, so Obama's ABOVE MY PAYGRADE on when life is conceived will become a classic NO NO!
--------------
John McCain is the one that stated a life begins when it is conceived, that is when sperm meets egg. Senator Obama gave an intelligent response, for NOONE knows when life actually begins. ONLY GOD KNOWS this. And I believe this is what Senator Obama was actually saying...Senator Obama is saying he is not going to play "GOD" and "DECIDE" when life actually begins. A fertilized egg does not have a heart, a brain, lungs, etc. I liken it to a fertilized hen's egg....once in awhile you crack an egg and your see a tiny something that is not normally part of the egg, for sure it does not look like a baby chick. Will it become a chick one day? Not in this case. The embryo created by the sperk and the egg has to reach the uterus before it begins getting the nourishment it needs, if it does not get there, then the embryo disolves or else grows anyway at which time you end up with a tubal pregnance which is very dangerous for the mom and the embro has to be removed or it dies on its own. God is the ULTIMATE JUDGE; we, humans, can only speculate. If you recall Senator Obama talked about the scientific and the religious beliefs and how complex they were before he said it was above his paygrade. He was actually saying he himself could not, in all honesty and fairness, determine just when life begins. McCain on the other hand jumped right in and said life begins at conception....sperm meets egg. Just HOW does McCain KNOW this??

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 7:53 PM | Report abuse

easyenough wrote:

hey da tourist....
I'm a liberal and I'm born again....guess that blows your godless liberal crap out of the water....

DaTourist replied:

Obama claims to be "born again," too, as do many liberals, but Obama doesn't have a clue when life begins. Do you?

easyenough wrote:

and by the way...hiding your hate under a veil of humor doesn't really work....
crawl back under your rock...

DaTourist replied:

I'm so sorry if you're offended because the antics of liberals amuse me, but I can't help it. It tickles my funny bone, and I have to tell the world.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:52 PM | Report abuse

McCain has brought in Ralph Reed the corrupt bigot and founder of the extreme right wing Christian Coalition. What is in this game for Obama? Does he believe he can outflank McCain on the religious right? That is a complete waste of time and money and an insult to his more progressive supporters. Religion has no place in politics in a country founded upon separation of church and state. Beliefs should remain personal and private they are not a badge of morality. We live in a world where continuous death and destruction is reigned down on the innocent by religious fanatics who believe they have God on their side. Enough already.

Posted by: jefflz | August 17, 2008 7:47 PM | Report abuse

It's not like he chose to suffer; he was working on becoming an Admiral and it blew up in his face. Big frickin' hero. The rest of his life story is one of privilege, freedom from want and health care paid for by the taxpayer from cradle to grave
==========================================

And you know what it's like to be beaten for 6 years. broken bones, scars, etc.

What a dirtbag you are. You're ilk make me want to puke.

Chevy

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:47 PM | Report abuse

I was very impressed with Obama's thoughtful and thought provoking answers. McCain sounded too much like Bush. Obama had more substance in one sentence than McCain said all night. But he made you think and that's a problem for many people it seems.

Posted by: Henry | August 17, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Obama's not as grim and humorless as Gore and Kerry, but Obama's got a PC streak a mile wide down his back, as evidenced when he put down Bernie Mac's jokes at the Democrat fundraiser.

When Chicago turned out for Bernie Mac's funeral, Obama flew off to sunny Hawaii. I'm sure Obama had a good excuse, at least as good as why he skipped a planned meeting with wounded US troops at Landstuhl Military Hospital.

It's the Obama Way.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

McCain strummed his instruments by playing his P.O.W. record over and over again.
I respect the man as a P.O.W., but he is not the only P.O.W. we have. We have many others who were in similar situations and who have not been given equal notoriety. Plus, my heart goes out to the families of the soldiers who actually lost their lives. My heart goes to the soldiers who will never have the opportunity to experience life or see their wives ever again or watch and assist in raising their children, because they died.
I heard pastor Rick Warren say, NO stump speech answers (no blatant disrespect to him, but why did he allow this?), because all I heard from McCain was stump speech replies. In all honesty Obama's answers were more genuine and spiritually felt coming from his heart w/empathy and compassion for the people, which is what I thought the forum was designed to do.
McCain’s answers were politically orchestrated responses’ from his stump speech which afforded him to skillfully reverberate reply’s with military links attached. We are sick of war and his war mentality. I was disappointed in McCain for not being open and original. What we got was his same old mantra, nothing personal from him other than his experience as a P.O.W...Didn't hear much empathy from his heart for the people who are suffering in this country. He was good now, because he detracted away from the religious forum with his cutesy little witty political tough guy, stump replies.

Makes me question McCain’s real reason for being Pro-life. Is it spiritual with him or is it for a calculating military cause? More babies, more soldier’s to send off to war...

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

How 'bout a rematch with the good Reverend Wright as the moderator?

now that would be entertaining!

Posted by: dano | August 17, 2008 7:41 PM | Report abuse

hey da tourist....
I'm a liberal and I'm born again....guess that blows your godless liberal crap out of the water....
and by the way...hiding your hate under a veil of humor doesn't really work....
crawl back under your rock...

Posted by: easyenough | August 17, 2008 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Porky Pig (NoBama) Running for President

What's this?

Ba-dee, ba-dee, ba-dee, ah, dah, um ya know um, um ah, uh, etc.

Hussein NObama trying to explain himself to questions he doesn't have a clue about.

When he does that, there's your sign, he's just making crap up as he goes along.

Chevy - ba-dee, ba-dee, ba-dee, that's all folks!

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

"McCain's life story is as powerful, if not more powerful, than that of any other politician in public life."

This is the Big Lie that everyone -- even many who otherwise loathe McCain -- spouts without hesitation. McCain was shot down and what he endured was foisted upon him by the enemy. It's not like he chose to suffer; he was working on becoming an Admiral and it blew up in his face. Big frickin' hero. The rest of his life story is one of privilege, freedom from want and health care paid for by the taxpayer from cradle to grave. There are FAR more compelling stories out there, but McCain is allowed to tell his maudlin stories instead of answering questions that require complex thinking and complex language -- and people like Mr. Cillizza go right on knee-jerking the notion that McCain's got some kind of corner on the Nobility-Through-Suffering market. Phooey!

Posted by: JimBob | August 17, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Bob II wrote:

It doesn't rankle libs for Obama to talk to God Squad always trying to legislate morality in a pluralistic dynamic society but you're dumb and we understand it. You don't have a lock on perceptions of God and God doesn't only exist in the abandoned cerebral cortex of a lying oil thief. Many people believe in their perception of God but don't have to have their beliefs daily reinforced. You use your religion for your benefit and that's wrong and it's wrong to kill defenseless children to steal their dead Daddy's oil!!

DaTourist replied:

It doesn't rankle?

Haw! Haw! Haw!

It doesn't rankle! It doesn't rankle! No, indeedy, it doesn't rankle!

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

I thought the exercise was pathetic. The questions were all softballs from a soft, mushy, holier-than-thou christian theology. That said McCain did better, as his answers were more direct and he didn't sound like he was parsing every word.

But Obama and McCain, come to my house this friday and here's the questions you'll get:

Obama: "In 2006 the American people entrusted the Demcorats with control of Congress. During that time, the Iraq war has been escalated, the economy has deteriorated dramatically, energy prices have skyrocketed, the Bush administration has been let off the hook on issues from Plame to the firigin of attorneys to wiretapping, and no progress has been made on immigration, health care, education, and a host of other important issues. Now if we go back to Chicago, we find the same thing. Your former constituents still live in Rezko-owned slums eating up the anti-American rhetoric of Reverend Wright. Given your party's poor track record, and your own negative one, why should anyone trust you to lead effectively?"

McCain: "Your party has been plagued with corruption for the past eight years and its leadership on foreign policy, economics, immigration, health care, and a host of other issues has been pathetic. But even worse, it is obvious to everyone outside your party that the Bush administration committed multiple impeachable offenses. Would you as President prosecute the Bush administration for their offenses and seek jail time? Can you make a list, right now, of any "clean" Republicans that you think are capable of serving the American people in a leadership capacity and turn that over to the press for investigation? Also, the Republican mantra has been that a growing economy will lift everyone out of poverty, but the gap between the rich and the poor has worsened ever since the Reagan administration and threatens to turn vast swathes of the US into a third world country. How will you give children of families that are economically disadvantaged access to acceptable education, health care, and the tools they need to move up the economic ladder, and why should we trust supply side economics any more given its history of failure? Or to put it more bluntly, why should we believe that your party serves more than the rich and the fundies?"

And let's see how they answer...

Posted by: Tristan | August 17, 2008 7:38 PM | Report abuse

' On social issues, which are of special import to the evangelical voters both candidates are hoping to court, McCain went for a black and white approach while Obama emphasized shades of gray.'

So far, I wouldn't disagree with Chris' characterization of McCain's and Obama's approaches to social issues.

'On when human life begins, McCain said simply: "At the moment of conception." Obama, on the other hand, offered a far more philosophical answer; "Whether you are looking at it from a theological or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity is above my pay grade."'

Why does Chris say shades of gray is "more philosophical" than black-and-white? I don't see it and I don't get it.

Actually, both McCain's and Obama's approaches to social issues express philosophies, different philosophies. A simple philosophy, easily comprehended, is no less a philosophy, than a convoluted and complicated philosophy, difficult to explain, difficult to grasp.

'McCain's answer drew wild applause; Obama's respectful silence.'

There must be a reason for why the audience applauded McCain's simple philosophy, and stared at Obama with respectfully silent incomprehension.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:35 PM | Report abuse

It doesn't rankle libs for Obama to talk to God Squad always trying to legislate morality in a pluralistic dynamic society but you're dumb and we understand it. You don't have a lock on perceptions of God and God doesn't only exist in the abandoned cerebral cortex of a lying oil thief. Many people believe in their perception of God but don't have to have their beliefs daily reinforced. You use your religion for your benefit and that's wrong and it's wrong to kill defenseless children to steal their dead Daddy's oil!!

Posted by: bob II | August 17, 2008 7:34 PM | Report abuse

And the problem with Obama's "thoughtfulness" or abstract thought patterns was that he was rarely able to connect the abstract to concrete examples. There is no point in being an extraordinary thinker if you cannot act or speak decisively on a subject. We do not need Hamlet as a president.

Posted by: Trisha | August 17, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

well have at it Chevy55. But its a waste of time.

All this is really the political process we have to go threw every four years. Conventions, debates. The election
===========================================

When a candidate loses a 10 point lead in a week, he's in very serious trouble.

It shows how weak his support is.

Chevy

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:31 PM | Report abuse

McCains consent to be interviewed by Rev. Warren as demeaning and beneath a true godless Conservative. It rankles and it shows.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:30 PM | Report abuse

I shouldn t even bother

hey DuhTourist

I dont have anything against POWs or christians. I know more christians then I do POWs, actually I dont know any POWs, as far as I know. whatever.

In my opinion being an ex POW cant dictate whether that means someones gonna be a effective president. You saying that means McCain should be effective? From what Ive seen it may be a handicap.

Like i posted before it may have traumatised him in a way that may be the reason for his ill temper and his ODD damn ways. And why he may be still fighting some unknown wars we know nothing about.

And according to him he knows how to win them. But which ones? Do you happen to know which ones DUhTourist?

i would love to know.

Posted by: llewis40 | August 17, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

Only God can save you now.

Posted by: Prophet | August 17, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

I think some of you missed the point on McCain's response about the definition of "rich."

Considering that only 12-15% of the country has an income of $100,000 +, I'd say Obama missed the mark on his definition of middle class.

At any rate, McCain's response was ultimately about the POTENTIAL of wealth and the ability to be socially mobile through employment and education. Everybody can become wealthier through those two important tools.

A much better, thought out response than Obama's.

Additionally, it seems as though Obama is spreading himself too thin by trying to appeal to absolutely everyone. His strength of conviction suffers greatly from it -- he seems to not be able to stand up for what he believes in because he's too preoccupied with being accepted (his so-called "crossover" appeal).

Posted by: Trisha | August 17, 2008 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: alance | August 17, 2008 7:19 PM
_________________

alance's mama.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:26 PM | Report abuse

If the posts on this board prove anything, it's that many Dem Libbies secretly resent and detest Obama for appearing at the Saddleback Community Church venue.

Dem Libbies hope to ride the Obama horse to a stealthy win, but they regard Obama's consent to be interviewed by Rev. Warren as demeaning and beneath a true godless liberal. It rankles and it shows.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:23 PM | Report abuse


The Saddleback Interview

McCain was suppose to be in the Green Room where he couldn't hear the forum, the questions or the answers. But McCain was in his Limo. The Blackberry is the trick. Just pull out the old Blackberry and tune in to the show and hear everything so you can pull the show off with ease.

Buutttt McCain was in his Limo. What a JOKE!

Oh, so Johns McCain apparently CHEATED yesterday. When Pastor Rick Warren thought he was in the Green Room at the studio, but was really in his Limo. So, I guess he was watching the forum on his Blackberry, that's ch-eatery. Now I know what those smiles were all about, especially from Cindy, so I guess it was all a big joke. One big joke.

America has been duped again by MSM.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:22 PM | Report abuse

Republican Evangelicals or whatever they're callling themselves preRapture; I think they're going with the Value Vote for November, the Culture of Life, Moral Majority paying a cracker channelling God for cash to save their ass and take them to the Promised Land when they couldn't get you to WalMart in a minivan and while they make millions telling you you've been chosen; six days a week preacher is buying new bass boats to troll for more suckers on the Raputure River. If from this faith you derived hope and then so be it and it made you a better person and you could fathom the difference between right and wrong then okey dokey but IT makes you have some ordained racist right to chemically bomb totally defenseless women and children to steal their oil and then have the audacity to say it's for their betterment and you're doing the dead barbarians a favor. I personally think you're NUTS. Mr. Magoo who's 72, said he loves Jesus cause he's saved. I'm Saved, said McCain, doesn't matter what I did, doesn't matter what I do, I paid up my preacher and I'm saved for Jesus. Killing innocent children for oil has NOTHING to do with any Jesus, any God or any derivative thereof. What I see are liars and oil thieves who use Christ as a crutch.

Posted by: bob II | August 17, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Obama's mama was an atheist. His grandparents were Unitarian. To be effective as a community organizer on the South side of Chicago, he had to join a local church. It is entirely possible he is CINO - a Christian in name only.

His pastor, Rev. Wright, taught him liberation theology. The PLO is not a terrorist organization - they are freedom fighters. Ditto for Hamas. Israel is the devil. GD America.

Posted by: alance | August 17, 2008 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Michael | August 17, 2008 7:11 PM

The difference is, a young wine does have the chance of being a great wine. Vinegar is just vinegar.

---------
Da Tourist wrote:
If Obama were a California wine, Ernest Gallo would not serve him before his time, which so obviously has not yet come.

Fresh wine is rarely good wine.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:48 PM

DaTourist rejoined:

Fresh wine is just grape juice, sweet and liberal and sticky.

When a vintage wine has been aged and tested, it become a great and smooth wine, a wine for the ages.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:18 PM | Report abuse

well have at it Chevy55. But its a waste of time.

All this is really the political process we have to go threw every four years. Conventions, debates. The election.

But its a foregone conclusion. OBAMA will be elected our next president come Nov 4th 2008. history in the making. you will just have to step out of the way and observe.

Posted by: llewis40 | August 17, 2008 7:16 PM | Report abuse

The stark contrast of the forum reveals one of Obama's strongest advantages: that he is completely different from George Bush, whereas John McCain is much like him.

McCain’s crisp, clear answers to Pastor Rick Warren’s excellent questions remind me of George Bush – not only in style but also in substance. Especially, McCain’s belief that evil can be defeated. While such sure-headedness in a leader may give comfort, it should also give pause, because it was such simplistic, single-minded thinking that allowed Bush to declare his “war on terror” against an “axis of evil.” Based on such rhetoric, we launched the war in Iraq, the greatest foreign policy blunder in US history. Senator Obama’s analytical and nuanced approach should allow us to revisit not only the decision to invade and occupy Iraq, but also the disastrous domestic and economic policies that have been implemented during the recent Conservative Era.

Posted by: Eric Forst | August 17, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

What is it about Dem Libbies that hates American POWs and Christians with a pathological and bizarre intensity that spills over into the most preposterous language?

Who really cares why the Golden Goose lays Golden Eggs?

It's the gift that keeps on giving politically to Republicans.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

I will do all in my power to see he's defeated and defeated soundly

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:00 PM

And I will be out here doing everything in MY power to make sure knuckle-dragging morons like you have no power. For every vote You cast I will walk and register 3 more Democrats. For every dollar you donate....I will raise MORE money. For every hate-filled, racists post you make...I'll turn over a trailer and make you homeless. John McCain is a doddering old, hateful angry war-monger and should not be allowed to govern an outhouse.

Posted by: TJ in LA | August 17, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Just got done watching the event, and was struck by several things: McCain sees the world in black and white and Obama sees it in shades of gray. Depending on how you see the world, you'll be predisposed to prefer McCain's decisiveness or Obama's nuanced arguments. Obama seemed much more in command of scriptural allusion, citing Micah 6:8 and Matthew 25 as grounding principles. McCain alluded to how prayer had sustained him in the North Viet Namese prison, but never gave a hint of biblical literacy. McCain's answers seemed pat and scripted. Obama seemed to be thinking on his feet and doing it well. Overall, I thought both men did well, but I continue to be more impressed with Obama.

Posted by: Michael | August 17, 2008 7:11 PM | Report abuse

The difference is, a young wine does have the chance of being a great wine. Vinegar is just vinegar.

---------
If Obama were a California wine, Ernest Gallo would not serve him before his time, which so obviously has not yet come.

Fresh wine is rarely good wine.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:48 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:11 PM | Report abuse

As it dawns on the Dem Libbies that McCain cleaned Obama's clock, their posts become more radical, outrageous, and antireligious by the moment!

Let the heathen rage!

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:10 PM | Report abuse

The candidates should not be pandering to those who need Invisible Companions and leaders who receive messages directly from God.

We would all be better off if we followed my Universal Commandment:
"Keep Your God to Yourself!"

Posted by: gkam | August 17, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

The pro-life stance is idiotic. How the hell can anybody state that a fertilised egg is a viable human being? The snot up my nose has more human life in it than a fertilised embryo.

How many fertilised eggs die in the womb? How many so-called chances at life get ejected every time a woman menstruates?

Come on, get real. Cut stupid and unfounded religion out of this debate, get a grip on reality and you will soon come to the realisation that a viable human life starts on the day of birth, because up to that time, that fetus is part of the host, the woman and it can be aborted naturally and there's damn-all that anybody can do about it.

The beauty of human life is that it's the cheapest commodity on the planet. Check out how many people die in Africa and Asia on any given day. And yet the population of the planet is increasing all the time.

I love it when these deluded religious nutters talk about the sanctity of life while being involved in the wholesale slaughter of human beings. George Dumbya Bush is forever thumping the tub about his religious beliefs, but he sure didn't take them into consideration when he fomented an illegal war against Iraq, resulting in the deaths of half a million Iraqis and over 4000 Americans.

Oh well, it's going to take a few more centuries before this idiocy and delusional state of man and religion fades into the garbage bin of history.

Posted by: Ziggy | August 17, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

Here's how Obama's Saddleback interview will change Democrat politics for all time to come!

Just as the Dukakis statement on capital punishment changed Democrat rhetoric for all time, so Obama's ABOVE MY PAYGRADE on when life is conceived will become a classic NO NO!

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:06 PM | Report abuse

The real issue about abortion isn't about whether we're allowing a woman a choice, it's about whether we want to punish, fine, or incarcerate the woman who has such a medical procedure performed.

I'd like to get a head count of all of the evangelical women who have had a LEGAL abortion. It's EASY to say you're against it, after you've taken advantage of the law (which protects you from being branded a criminal) and had one. Maybe they've seen the light, but maybe they should be doing time in the pen?

And, what level of penalty should be imposed? Should we call it murder and sentence anyone who terminates a pregnancy to death? Or, would we be humane and just give them life behind bars?

This litmus test issue just needs to go away. It's infantile. If you want an abortion (which no one really does) have one. If you don't, don't. If you're religion forbids it, then definitely don't but the government has NO business forcing a woman to have a child if they do not want one, at least during the first three months. The whole decision is up to the woman. Men shouldn't even be allowed to vote when, and if, abortion issues come to a vote.

McCain was pandering for votes with his answer. It's not that simple. Warren should have asked him whether the commandment, "Thou shalt not kill" applied to military people. And what of killing innocents as "collateral" damage?

Posted by: Obiwan1250 - Des Moines | August 17, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Depending how far a news person wants to go on this. I think there is a good case to be made he is in the early stages of Alzheimer's. All it would take would be a panel of experts to examine him over the last year in just what is on tape. There must be hundreds of hours of tape of him. I am far from an expert but I certainly see the decline over the last year and it is huge if you go back to 2000. He is undoubtedly a sick man and getting worse quickly. You would think the possibility of a man being elected president who may be losing his mind would be an issue. WTF is going on here?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:04 PM | Report abuse

Back in 2004, McCain condemned the Corsi/Smearboater-types as despicable -- which, of course, they are.

Where is THAT McCain this year? Where's the "honor" in letting these dirtbags do dirty work for him?

IF he stands up -- MANS up -- I'll reconsider my observation that he's a SUCK-up.

Posted by: jonny | August 17, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Well, Obama won't win in 2008, but Lady Clinton will have to contend with a fresh crop of religious liberals for the Dem nomination in 2012!

Casey of Pennsylvania! Kaine of Virginia! Perhaps a Southern Baptist will emerge, too?

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

McCain was suppose to be in the Green Room where he couldn't hear the forum, the questions or the answers. The Blackberry does the trick. Just pull out the old Blackberry and tune in to the show and hear everything so you can pull the show off with ease.

Buutttt he was in his truck. What a JOKE!

Oh, so Johns McCain apparently CHEATED yesterday. When Pastor Rick Warren thought he was in the Green Room at the studio, but was really in his truck. So, I guess he was watching the forum on his Blackberry, that's ch-eatery. Now I know what those smiles were all about, especially from Cindy, so I guess it was all a big joke. One big joke.


Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

ok i'm REALLY confused. in a secular society where there's a separation of church and state, WHY are the two major party presidential candidates spending time at a forum such as this? we get a mere 3 to 4 debates almost no town halls and not a lot of time dwelling on policy and the direction of this country.

Posted by: earthyman71 | August 17, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Obama read the polls and lighted one Kool off of another!

=========================================

LOL Love it!! thanks man - adding to my arsonal od NObama attacks

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:02 PM | Report abuse

If all you good Americans liked George Bush and his cowboy mentality you'll just love the lightweight from Arizona. McCain's 3 word replies and his inherent cockyness on almost any subject proves he is probably vastly more shallow than GWBush. Vote for this neanderthal and you will get an empty bag.

Posted by: ClaudeM | August 17, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

Once again, the media spin and bluster Obama's performance to be better than it was, and McCain's to be worse.

Obama was clearly evasive, ungrounded and scrambled for answers. From his "above my pay grade" to his lame, fumbling performance explaining what evil is and what to do about it, Obama was a C-minus. McCain performed above all expectations and was warmly successful with the crowd and those who watched.

But you wouldn't know how lame and hollow Obama's performance was, or how articulate, decisive and grounded McCain's was, by reading or hearing the accounts of it.

Definitely, watch this for yourself, before taking other people's word for it. It's just like the 22 primary debates, all of which which Obama lost but never got reported as such.

If only the man that the media is in love with, really existed.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 17, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

JOHN MCCAIN, TRAITOR TO HIS COUNTRY, COLLABORATOR WITH THE ENEMY, MILITARY DISGRACE.
Ted Sampley, a Vietnam Veteran and former Green Beret, issued a CHALLENGE to John McCain "If you can show us that the information presented in our mailer is untruthful . . . we will Stand Down" This CHALLENGE was issued during an interview with INSIDE EDITION on January 17, 2008.
John, family members of Vietnam POW/MIA(s) have been waiting for more then 14 years for you to have the courage to face them eye to eye in front of the American Public - Here is your opportunity for some "STRAIGHT TALK." Stop hiding behind your fabricated "War Hero" persona. You know we can prove your collaborations with declassified government documents . . . It is time for the American people to get to know the REAL John McCain - the John McCain that the POW/MIA families witnessed during the 1991-93 US Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs .
Bring It On John! HERE IS OUR NUMBER 252-527-0442

--------
In McCain, the Republicans have a candidate who has sacrificed for his country, who never has to too his own horn because his example is always OUT THERE, a shining example of honor.

In Obama, the Democrats have a candidate who has never sacrificed anything personal or political, other than his old friends (Wright, Rezko, Phlegar, Jackson, and Bernie Mac) when they no longer fit in with his political ambitions.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:56 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

"Pastor" Rick straight up LIED. McCain was not in a cone of silence.Hi was in his limo. He had complete access to the questions before. He didn't arrive until 30 minutes later. The whole thing was a lie set up to make McCain look good. America has been duped again by MSM.
CNN, MSNBC, FOX, all should be ashamed to promote this farce.

Posted by: TJ in LA | August 17, 2008 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Every board I can hit is reading my messages which are as follows:

FACT: When givin the choice in the Illinois state legislature NObama says “KILL THE BABY” if born alive.

FACT: This is MURDER under the Federal Equal Protection act.

If a baby was born alive during a botched abortion they would just let the baby lay there until it starved to death.

FACT Obama while in the Ill. state legistature stopped a bill coming to the floor that would allow the baby to live once it came out of the womb.

When Obama left that same bill came back to the floor and Illinois passed it by a unanimous vote.

This bill is identical to the federal Born Alive Infants Protection Act, which passed the U.S. Senate in 2002

You DEMS going to tell me NObama isn't a sick individual?

Chevy - Educated Redneck - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News

I will do all in my power to see he's defeated and defeated soundly

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Obama read the polls and lighted one Kool off of another!

Obama's up to four packs a day now, and Michelle is getting worried about the smoke coming out of the crapper on O-force One!

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

I'm a bit bothered by both candidates because they focus on what "his opponent" said rather than what they can do and work with the "opponent" to better serve the US! Second; I believe their stand on the terrorism issue and Iraq is totaly will NOT serve the US on the long run! As a matter of fact it will hurt the US. The longer our troops stays in Iraq it is a victory to Al-Qaida! The longer our policies in that region in favor of one party on the expense of the other party! The hatered will increase! Spread justice even if it was against us we will win; be blind and arrogant we will lose and we can't afford that! Middle east is a messy region; the best option let them fight it over and be done with it without the involvement of the troops and the troops should be out of that region anyway! Once they fight it over and be done with it THEN send the troops to spread PEACE and they will thank us! NOW we are sinking in that region and both candidates can't EVEN see the bigger picture! OUR actions are OUR biggest enemy and not Al-Qaida! Spread peace; Al-Qaida will die by its own!

Posted by: Ned | August 17, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Hate to tell you but Obama is a solid 6 to 9 points ahead and has been all along. Pay no attention to daily polls that can be effected by the time of day and what is on TV.

---------
LOL LOL LOL

Latest Polls haven't been released but my sources inform me NObama is tanking FAST.

I predicted this months ago.

This is what happens to an empty suit.

I also like to take some credit as I'm spamming every board under the sun about this nutjob

EX:

When left to his own vices we saw the church Hussein NObama chose.

The church of HATE!

NObama's church preached, Hate Whitey, Hate the Jew, and God D* America.

What kind of church repeatedly uses the LORD'S name in VAIN?

20 YEARS NObama attended this church of HATE and only left after he felt the heat!

Chevy - Educated Redneck - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News
Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 6:55 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:58 PM | Report abuse

Erik D. states:

Gary wants a president to tell him what to do, what is right and what is wrong. Your insane!!! A president must lead, a president must surround himself with powerful hands and minds for direction in all aspects.

Your grammar is as bad as your reasoning.
I don't want a President to tell me what to do. I want a President to tell me what he/she believes. Regarding abortion, Obama did not do that.

Gary

Posted by: Gary Palmer | August 17, 2008 6:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm dead scared of either Obama or McCain getting into a position of power such as President. Here are two guys who profess belief in an imaginary friend without a solitary shred of evidence to support this belief. That means that either could try and justify doing almost anything, including starting a nuclear holocaust by stating that this imaginary God told them to do so.

Instead of having this stupid debate, somebody should line Obama and McCain up and ask, "Do you believe that there is a God and he listens to your prayers?" I bet that both would answer in the affirmative. So the questioner should then say, OK, start praying that this God of yours gives us all a sign within the next minute - a burning bush, flaming writing on the wall, anything like that. Let's face it, your bible says this God has allegedly done so before, so if he listens to you, let's see it happen now, to prove that what you are saying about your alleged God isn't just your fanciful rambling and wishful thinking."

Obviously any rational person knows that this God, along with Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy simply does not exist, so nothing will happen and both Obama and McCain will look like fools. Of course such a challenge will never occur, because there are far too many deluded fools in the USA who also believe in imaginary friends.

It never ceases to amaze me how a nation that has achieved so much in science and medicine is populated by idiots who believe in fictional deities.

Posted by: Ziggy | August 17, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

In McCain, the Republicans have a candidate who has sacrificed for his country, who never has to too his own horn because his example is always OUT THERE, a shining example of honor.

In Obama, the Democrats have a candidate who has never sacrificed anything personal or political, other than his old friends (Wright, Rezko, Phlegar, Jackson, and Bernie Mac) when they no longer fit in with his political ambitions.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse

LOL LOL LOL

Latest Polls haven't been released but my sources inform me NObama is tanking FAST.

I predicted this months ago.

This is what happens to an empty suit.

I also like to take some credit as I'm spamming every board under the sun about this nutjob

EX:

When left to his own vices we saw the church Hussein NObama chose.

The church of HATE!

NObama's church preached, Hate Whitey, Hate the Jew, and God D* America.

What kind of church repeatedly uses the LORD'S name in VAIN?

20 YEARS NObama attended this church of HATE and only left after he felt the heat!

Chevy - Educated Redneck - Bringing you up-to-date DEM News

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse

McCain being pro life is odd? You libs really need to get out once in a while and while you are at it try coming up with a GOOD reason why killing babies is "ok."

Posted by: Mark | August 17, 2008 6:54 PM | Report abuse

1. The fact that the interrogator is a religious leader is put in brackets for the purpose of these comment.

2. The content of the responses, i.e., the policy positions of the candidates will not be commented upon by me.

3. Barack's obviously better when scripted, much less so when extemporaneous.

4. The questioning was more thoughtful, more serious, than previous professional media interrogations of the candidates.

5. McCain showed that questions dealing with abstract concepts, such as "evil," are not his thing. He immediately reified the concept "evil" into bin Laden. In other words, deep thinking is not Johnny Mac's forte.

6. Obama revealed himself to be a deep, abstract thinker, for better or worse. His response to the "evil" question, for example, showed he understood that "evil" is an abstract idea, a concept. Warren asked the question from that point of view as well. Obama's answer was 40-times as complex as McCain's; it was also 40-times as edifying.

7. The style of the responses by the two guys was also revealing: Obama pondered; McCain shot from the hip. Obama listened to Walker until Walker completed his question; McCain blurted responses before the question was fully asked.

8. McCain came across as a guy who has made up his mind on EVERY question that may be out there; Obama, as a guy who thinks.

9. Warren and his staff did a helluva job in preparing the questions.

10. This format actually did give the voting public a fairly good venue for assessing the two candidates beyond their positions on the issues.

11. Obama actually listened to the questions; McCain's answers often were canned talking points, irrespective of what the question was.

12. Finally,and I hate to admit this because of the fact that Warren is still--when the dust settles--an evangelical religious leader--the real Winner was Warren and the real Loser was the professional media.

[This originally was posted on my blog: http://ProteanPerspectives.blogspot.com ]

Posted by: FredrickBernanke | August 17, 2008 6:53 PM | Report abuse

I never have doubted McCain's ability to stand and deliver to ordinary Americans.

The Saddleback performance proved that I was right not to doubt McCain.

What can we say about Obama?

Obama's no Clinton, no Kerry, and no Gore, but Obama's no President either.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Wathed it again.

McCain gives me the absolute creeps.

Watching him. Listening to him. He has issues. Deep ones.

He's ODD. And strange. With dark black eyes full of malice it seems to me.

Looking at him reminds me of the character Blakelock from the movie "The Gauntlet" with Eastwood. just creepy. Im not kidding either.

Perhaps its from his time as a POW. a reason for is ill temperament and ODD ways.

As much as I disagree with some of you haters and right wing bigots you folks need to just think about this. You may hate OBAMA but are you really sure about McCain? Is he really the man you wanna see in the oval office waving his hand over that little red button?

The man has issues and I feel this country would be in dire straights if he's elected president. He wont be. Im so certain of that. But still.

The man is ODD. Im serious.

Posted by: llewis40 | August 17, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

NEWS FLASH FROM CNN

Mccain arrived at the church just before he was to go on and was not in a sound proof room but in his motorcade. Undoubtedly listening to the questions. Mccains handlers can't take any chances with the old man.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Oh, so Johns McCain apparently CHEATED yesterday. When Pastor Rick Warren thought he was in the Green Room at the studio, but he was really in his truck. So, I guess he was watching the forum on his Blackberry, that's ch-eatery. Now I know what those smiles were all about, especially from Cindy, so I guess it was all a big joke.

McCain was suppose to be in the Green Room where he couldn't hear the forum, the questions or the answers. The Blackberry would do the trick. Just pull out the old Blackberry and tune in to the show and hear everything so you can pull the show off with ease. But he was in his truck. What a JOKE!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

If Obama were a California wine, Ernest Gallo would not serve him before his time, which so obviously has not yet come.

Fresh wine is rarely good wine.

Posted by: DaTourist | August 17, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

Porky Pig (NoBama) Running for President

What's this?

Ba-dee, ba-dee, ba-dee, ah, dah, um ya know um, um ah, uh, etc.

Hussein NObama trying to explain himself to questions he doesn't have a clue about.

When he does that, there's your sign, he's just making crap up as he goes along.

Chevy - ba-dee, ba-dee, ba-dee, that's all folks!

Posted by: chevy55sc | August 17, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

by increasingly large chunks, this country is realizing that obama simply isn't a viable candidate for the office.

Posted by: america, f yea | August 17, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Three salient facts about McCain

1. He speaks from the heart, he's not lost without his teleprompter.

2. He was good for the Religious Right in 2000. GW was better.


3. He gave five and half years of his life having nearly every bone in his body broken to stand up and protect freedom for you and I. Waking up every day with a gun pointed to his head or down his throught. You know what. I think I am going to give the guy a pass on this one. Does not make it right. but he's a man. he stands up and admits it. we should be so fortunate to have a man of such strong character and dignity take the oath of the oval office.
----------------------------------

Three salient facts about McCain

1. he has a temper

2. he told the Religious Right off to their faces, after he was no longer a candidate in 2000

3. he TOSSED a wife (who worked 5 years for his release from North Viet Nam), after she was disfigured and disabled after a near fatal car crash, along with 2 adopted sons and a daughter. He also got his 2nd marriage license to his blonde 15 year younger pillionaire, a MONTH before his divorce was finalised.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Great quote from a USA Today article today:

"Senator Obama spoke to the heart and mind where Senator McCain spoke from the heart and mind."

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 17, 2008 6:31 PM | Report abuse

!. We do not live in a black and white world and the POTUS needs to be functional let alone recognize the existence of the gray areas.

2. Evil is not the "them" in us or them. Evil is the some of us and the some of them that are willing to kill the good guys to get their enemies.

3. Pro-life Obama said he hopes you choose life but it's a choice you need to make and only your God should judge. The primary point he made regarding abortion was that unless we are going to be 100% consistent about what constitutes life we shouldn't legislate any of it.
i.e. If a pregnant woman can't count her baby in utero as a passenger in the HOV lane you can't charge the drunk driver that kills her and her baby while they are driving in the HOV lane with the death of the unborn. You can't pick and choose who's unborn (or already born) have begun life and who's have not when you are responsible for killing thousands of children while carpet bombing a country to bring them freedom.

3. The greatest foreign policy credential a candidate can have is not, I repeat, IS NOT who is most willing to listen to the guys telling him/her to pull the trigger! Until we recognize that we will continue to undermine everything this nation was founded for until we self-destruct. While I agree with his statements the infuriating gall of our current president denigrating the Russians for their most recent war crimes while standing by his own decision to attack two sovereign countries we share no borders and no historical link with is hypocrisy at its worst. An eye for an eye has only made us blind.

Posted by: jj gravy | August 17, 2008 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it some kind of sacrilege to distort a man's testimony delibered in a Church?

The pundits who commented later in print, online and broadcast demonstrate that they will lie about an Obama performance vs a rival, even when the performance is in a Church!

It's one thing to spin a secular debate, another thing to present a man as holier-than-he-actually-was.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 17, 2008 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Three salient facts about McCain

1. he has a temper

2. he told the Religious Right off to their faces, after he was no longer a candidate in 2000

3. he TOSSED a wife (who worked 5 years for his release from North Viet Nam), after she was disfigured and disabled after a near fatal car crash, along with 2 adopted sons and a daughter. He also got his 2nd marriage license to his blonde 15 year younger pillionaire, a MONTH before his divorce was finalised.

While Cheney and Rove laughed with disdain as clueless trusting Evangelicals left their offices with NOTHING, year, after year, after year, even they didn't tell them off publicly.

These facts will matter if McCain becomes president, he'll TOSS you Evangelicals in a heart beat. He also won't invite you back any other year. He'll do this for SPITE.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Rick Warren was the real winner in the whole gathering, since unlike 'news' media folk, he asked great questions and then shut up and allowed each man to answer, and then didn't try and trip them up or make himself the center of attention. I would LOVE to see more of these civil gatherings. But sadly the media like hype and headlines. So unless the two men agree to more I doubt we will see any.

Posted by: MotherLodeBeth | August 17, 2008 6:21 PM | Report abuse

"A contrast that Republicans had to be happy about came when Warren asked each candidate for their most gut-wrenching decision in their lives. Obama chose his decision to oppose the war in Iraq. McCain said it was his choice to remain as a prisoner of war despite an offer from his captors to, in effect, jump the line. McCain's life story is as powerful, if not more powerful, than that of any other politician in public life. While Obama's answer was sound, it dealt with a challenge in the political arena; McCain's decision served as evidence that he has lived his "country first" campaign slogan."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So McCain has no regrets about flip-flopping on the use of torture!

McCain = Bush

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Here is a story written about the author he stole the story from by Mccain.
http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/

------
Di,

The salient fact, that a cross was drawn in the sand by a soldier for McCain's benefit, apparently is not in dispute. So are you saying that similar events could not happen to multiple individuals?

Let me give you one definition of a lie:

...a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth; a falsehood.

Since you and others are not able to conclusive prove that the subject of McCain's statement did not draw a cross for his benefit, you cannot conclude that he made the statement with the intention to deceive. Therefore, he has not told a lie.

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:59 PM

Posted by: Anonymous
--------------------
Anonymous, A lie is a lie period. True, none of us KNOW whether or not McCain is lying, however HE KNOWS and he knew he was lying and has been lying about this all this time....and just for ADDED SPICE, he added, "we were two people of faith". The guy is deceitful!! Next time he tells the story, he will tell us he and that soldier "WENT UP INTO THE HILLS/WILDERNESS OF VIET NAM AND PRAYED FOR 40 DAYS AND 40 NIGHTS"!!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Last night, McCain at Saddleback told a story about being a POW that included a tale about the cross in the dirt.

He told Alexander Solzhenitsyn's story. Not his own. It has created a major concern for me about McCain's mental health that is rather serious.

McCain retold, vividly, to an evangelical audience, another man's struggle and tried to pass it off as his own. And seemed to think it was his. Even brings into question whether his own story (in a book and USNews&WorldReport story in 2007) is accurately portrayed.

Alzheimer's? Fantasy? Affected by being a POW? Whatever it is, it does truly indicate his Vietnam service may just make him unable to function as president.

That, and Warren asked for no talking points in the answers. Just about every one he gave was rehearsed from something. If he studied 'Cross In The Dirt,' he stole from the wrong paper.

McCain now also seems mentally unfit to be president.

Here's what's being reported about this just now....

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/8/17/122230/161/239/569299

Compare with what he wrote last year...

http://www.usnews.com/articles/news/2008/01/28/john-mccain-prisoner-of-war-a-first-person-account.html

Posted by: kravitz | August 17, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

All that I heard from McCain was Chapter 12 of the Bush Election Sleaze Playbook; "Tell Them What They Want to Hear!"

McCain did well by Bush standards.

Posted by: AugustWest1 | August 17, 2008 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Di,

Let me see if I could illustrate better what a lie is.

Hilary wrote below: Statistics show that when Republicans are in power, abortion rates increase.

I one relies on the facts as reported on Salon.com on January 18, 2008, it appears that the author was truly misrepresenting facts with the intention to deceive. See below:

"Abortion rates in the U.S. are falling

Days before the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Guttmacher Institute has released a national study of abortion. Its findings are something to be celebrated by pro-abortion-rights and antiabortion folks alike: The U.S. abortion rate is the lowest it has been in more than three decades. In 2005, the most recent year included in the study, 1.2 million abortions were performed; that's an 8 percent drop from 2000. Abortion rates are also falling at a faster speed, say researchers."

The Guttenmacher Institute's report clearly shows that abortion rates DECLINED during a Republican administration. Therefore, Hilary's contention must be a lie. (Unless, of course, she has more current data that I'm not aware of.)

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 6:15 PM | Report abuse

It's over.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/opinion/17rich.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin
"“McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”

Pro life in politics. Murder Inc in business. If he thinks he can be elected POTUS, then he truly lost his mind in Vietnam.

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I was very pleasantly surprised at the performance of McCain last night. In this type of forum I think he won hands down. I thought he was more direct and spoke from the heart and let words fall where may.

I think Obama was very thoughtful and deliberative but I felt he was more filtered, more inexperienced, and was more concerned about getting the most support on every issue.

I want somebody to lead and not play to the crowd. Somebody who talks from the heart. Usually you'll find the most experienced who do that.

Posted by: GPC
GPC: I don't know what stratasphere you were at during the faith forum. It was McCain that pandered to and addressed the audience!! The ONLY time he looked at Pastor Warren was when he listened to the question, then he promptly turned to the audience. McCain, no doubt, is using his POW days as the vehicle on which to ride to the White House....he has made it the HIGHTLIGHT of his campaign. I also note he lives back in the 60s and 70s, even the songs he plays on his dispicable ADs are from that era!! McCain made no effort to learn our new technology, he does NOT KNOW HOW TO USE A COMPUTER AND DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO USE E-MAIL!! He thinks Chechloslovakia is still a country, he does NOT KNOW is split into The Chech Republic and Slovakia, TWO SEPARATE AND DISTINCT COUNTRIES. He does NOT KNOW that Pakistan borders Afghanistan; he KNOWS it borders Iraq!! McCain is so out of tune, not only with America, but with foreign countries as well. Dowright scary he does NOT KNOW which country borders which and we are fighting wars wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan!!! Folks this is really scary. So if he want's to bomb Iran, is he going to bomb Pakistan instead?? I am very serious about this!! McCain is a big danger to America and a bigger danger overseas!! Time to see McCain for the warmonger that he is!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I was impressed with how Mega-church pastor Rick Warren handled this forum. Both candidates were given the proper time to answer the questions without a two minute time limit. I would agree Obama did come across as a thoughtful politician on the issues voters care about. The contrasts between candidates and their parties were clear. It was a civil discussion moderated by a good pastor. I was impressed as I'm sure a lot of voters who saw it on cspan were.

Posted by: Annie | August 17, 2008 6:10 PM | Report abuse

I almost urped at Tony Perkins as an MSNBC commentator tonight
The "unbiased" assesments by KKK linked Perkins and aging Culture Warrior Pat Buchanan was stunning...what...MSNBC was Fred Phelps busy tonight?

Posted by: mark | August 17, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Obama says pointed abortion query “above his pay grade” http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=27992

Religious Voters in the 2008 Election: What It Means for Democrats, Republicans


http://pewforum.org/events/?EventID=184

Posted by: rtfanning | August 17, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Here is a story written about the author he stole the story from by Mccain.
http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/

------
Di,

The salient fact, that a cross was drawn in the sand by a soldier for McCain's benefit, apparently is not in dispute. So are you saying that similar events could not happen to multiple individuals?

Let me give you one definition of a lie:

...a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth; a falsehood.

Since you and others are not able to conclusive prove that the subject of McCain's statement did not draw a cross for his benefit, you cannot conclude that he made the statement with the intention to deceive. Therefore, he has not told a lie.

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:59 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Obama always try to change or restate what his original position was. He will tomorrow on something he said at "saddleback". Just watch it happen tomorrow. as if we can't figure out the truth. He will restate a least a couple things he said Saturday night.

Anyone else notice this? kind of hard to miss. Just watch his correction or retatement(s) every day of something that he has previously stated. It's happening more and more every day.

I guess you can never be 'wrong' if you deny, or constantly change whatever your original position was.

Does he just think the Non-elists like me aren't smart enough to see this. Well I do, it just ain't that hard to see through that nonsense.

Posted by: dano | August 17, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

The bad news for Senator McCain, not once did he mention Jesus or Christ in any reponse to the faith question.
The good news for Senator McCain, not once did he combine the name of Jesus and the name of Christ as he usually does in anger and vane.

Posted by: AZ Conservative Catholic | August 17, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

The worst part about this spectacle: We all know those kinds of poser McCain-type "Christians," who tell everyone else they're "saved" (by an heiress?) and "forgiven" (lucky you!) and go to church to punch their tickets; but who don't live a reflective and meaningful life, who don't what is actually said in the Bible bear the least on their actions and choices. McCain's unreflective canned answers show him to be, at the very best, a ticket-punching bumper sticker "Christian"

Posted by: patmac | August 17, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Great - now both of these guys are pandering to idiot ChristoFascists. The very people that helped put George Bush in office. Let's nail all of these morons to crosses and burn them for their heresy in voting for George Bush.

How do we take seriously a pastor that believes that humans engaged in dinosaur rodeos? This assjack will take us back to the stone age.

Posted by: What a waste of time | August 17, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

It is strange Mccain quotes the original author of the story in his book so we know he was a fan of the writer. He had to be aware of the story it was one of the most famous. I believe Mccain is a little demented and doesn't know the difference between what really happened and what didn't. It is to big a coincidence, I am sorry.

-----------
Di,

The salient fact, that a cross was drawn in the sand by a soldier for McCain's benefit, apparently is not in dispute. So are you saying that similar events could not happen to multiple individuals?

Let me give you one definition of a lie:

...a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth; a falsehood.

Since you and others are not able to conclusive prove that the subject of McCain's statement did not draw a cross for his benefit, you cannot conclude that he made the statement with the intention to deceive. Therefore, he has not told a lie.

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:59 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Di,

The salient fact, that a cross was drawn in the sand by a soldier for McCain's benefit, apparently is not in dispute. So are you saying that similar events could not happen to multiple individuals?

Let me give you one definition of a lie:

...a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth; a falsehood.

Since you and others are not able to conclusive prove that the subject of McCain's statement did not draw a cross for his benefit, you cannot conclude that he made the statement with the intention to deceive. Therefore, he has not told a lie.

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:59 PM | Report abuse

you mean obama's hardest choice wasn't denegrating his granmother, or throwing his preacher under the bus?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Sure McCain knew the questions that were going to be asked. Did you notice that he was answering before the questions even got out. It was curious that the Pastor told Obama not use the forum as a stump speech, but allowed McCain to speak his whole stump speech. I also noticed the big warm hug from the Pastor as McCain came on stage. Hand shake for Obama.

Posted by: Someone | August 17, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

dddas afsd fsdsdfa dfsdfsdfsdfa
asdffasddfsa asasdf

Posted by: xaknem1976 | August 17, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

My FRIENDS, a pastor this morning repeated my thoughts EXACTLY of last evening while viewing this forum, -- someone had the questions before hand. What aroused my suspicion was when interviewee #2 (while answering a question in part 1 or 2) leaned over the table and asked Pastor Rick when he would get to talk about the Supreme Court. Supposedly he had a comment he wanted to make. Listen to the tape again. Yet, when the Supreme Court question was presented and answered, whatever he wanted to expound upon, never came out of his mouth. And, my friends, we have got to move our thinking forward so we can move this "country" forward. Must everything be about "war", "by force", the past, and/or previously heard stories. We need to grow up in our thinking and our doing.

Posted by: Jackie B. | August 17, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Where John Mccain plagiarized his cross in the sand story. The old man has been telling the BS story he no longer knows if it even actually happened to him or not.
see below


Along with other prisoners, he worked in the fields day after day, in rain and sun, during summer and winter. His life appeared to be nothing more than backbreaking labor and slow starvation. The intense suffering reduced him to a state of despair.

On one particular day, the hopelessness of his situation became too much for him. He saw no reason to continue his struggle, no reason to keep on living. His life made no difference in the world. So he gave up.

Leaving his shovel on the ground, he slowly walked to a crude bench and sat down. He knew that at any moment a guard would order him to stand up, and when he failed to respond, the guard would beat him to death, probably with his own shovel. He had seen it happen to other prisoners.

As he waited, head down, he felt a presence. Slowly he looked up and saw a skinny old prisoner squat down beside him. The man said nothing. Instead, he used a stick to trace in the dirt the sign of the Cross. The man then got back up and returned to his work.

As Solzhenitsyn stared at the Cross drawn in the dirt his entire perspective changed. He knew he was only one man against the all-powerful Soviet empire. Yet he knew there was something greater than the evil he saw in the prison camp, something greater than the Soviet Union. He knew that hope for all people was represented by that simple Cross. Through the power of the Cross, anything was possible.

Solzhenitsyn slowly rose to his feet, picked up his shovel, and went back to work. Outwardly, nothing had changed. Inside, he had received hope.

So, it is very interesting that Mr. Solzhenitsyn and Mr. McCain had the same Christian guard/prisoner experience. Or maybe it is all just a made up story. Somehow I doubt that Alexander Solzhenitsyn heard John McCain's story and copied it.

This story was actually excerpted from "The Gulag Archipelago" by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, which was released in the US in 1973.

UPDATE X2: It seems that McCain is a bit of a Solzhenitsyn fan, as evidenced in his article in the NY Sun . It leaves little doubt Mccain stole the story from Solzhenitsyn

http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

andrew the problem is ...not only...that here is a story that is showing up reported as happening to other people...(I mean c'mon this happens ...drawing "crosses in sand " on a regular basis)

but also that his story has changed telling it...as do many stories.

It would be fine...besides he is using it for points in a Presidential election.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Jameswcarter

considering the best scientists and biologists in the world can't really determine that...the pay scale is God's

so to say the President should be able to determine that...well that is saying that the President KNOWS what only GOD seems to know.

and sorry the bible does not determine science in this country.


Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

The "apples to apples" comparison format truly revealed the core of both candidates. While pundits and bloggers have now dissected and spun the candidate's specific comments, my observations are at a more wholistic level of which candidate provided the confidence factor to win my vote.

First, I confess, that I am one of the much-courted "white evangelicals." However, I have NEVER supported, nor even liked John McCain for his obvious departures from the Republican mainstream. In fact, prior to the Forum I fully expected more insight, spiritual depth and forward-leaning innovation from Obama than from McCain. What transpired, was in my opinion, was a shocking revelation of how substantially unqualified Obama is to be President. None of which have anything to do with political party affiliation, race, or the typical "evangelical dogma."

This capability gap can be summarized in three macro-level observations from last night.

1. Clarity of Conviction. Much has been written about Obama's thoughtful, philosophical responses. That's a good thing. But Obama's wishy-washy and overly generalized refusal to clearly articulate his most deeply held convictions will not work for any person who hopes to be President. Further, to me, this just opens the door to Obama being unduly influenced by special interest groups. With McCain, there's not an ounce of equivocation for his principles. He knows what he believes and why. You may not agree, but at least you know. That's what a President must be convinced of and willing to defend daily.

2. Subject matter expertise. Excuse me for being pragmatic, but I don't want a President who must "learn on the job." On EVERY answer, McCain's obvious life experience and policy leadership expertise was obvious. This is the man that can lead us through any global crisis immediately.

3. Decisiveness. This to me is the major deficit that Obama demonstrated last night. The President must be a do-er. He (or she) must be able to take action and provide direction without hesitation. McCain showed that's the kind of person he has always been and will be in office. Obama will still be thoughtfully contemplating philosophical positions long after the time for action has come and gone.

Will white evangelicals support McCain? Yes, and I'm thankful to Rick Warren and the Saddleback Church for providing an insightful opportunity to demonstrate why this will be so.

Posted by: Mark Herndon | August 17, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Di,

It's also entirely possible that the gesture is a recurring gesture in Communist-controlled areas. Remember, they could have been persecuted had they been found out. No one has shown that it did not happen to McCain in additon to others.

*******************************************
almost the same story appeared in solitsnaya's (sp?) biography about his internment...

and now two other POW bio's are being said to have similar cross in the sand stories...

that is bad.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:40 PM

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

I am astonished that the so called evangelicals (I am a Christian who believes in Christ, but I am black so I guess I do not meet the qualifications to be called the name)dare to clap loudly when McCain says he will hunt down Osama Bin Laden until he can eliminate him. Is this not the group who is supposed to practice "Vengeance is Mine saith the Lord"?

Posted by: Carolina
--------------------
Carolina, you are absolutely correct!! McCain comes across as a rabid dictator! His "I will find Bin Ladin, and I will Get Bin Ladin, I KNOW HOW TO FIND BIN LADIN AND I WILL GET BIN LADIN" is a bunch of crazy ranting!! IF MCCAIN KNOWS HOW TO FIND BIN LADIN AND HOW TO GET BIN LADEIN" my question is: "WHY DIDN'T YOU SHARE THIS INFORMATION WITH ALL THE HIGH-RANKING COMMANDERSW THAT HAVE BEEN AND ARE CURRENTLY IN IRAQ, LIKE GENERAL PATRAUS (sp), AND WITH PRESIDENT BUSH??? JOHN McCain YOU ARE ONE BIG-TIME LIAR. You do NOT know how to find Bin Ladin anymore than you KNOW how to win wars!!! IF you did, Bin Ladin would have been found long ago and the war would have been won a long time ago and we would NOT be in Afghanistan and Iraq today!! McCain, you KNOW NOTHING, you do not KNOW that Pakistan borders Afghanistan and NOT Iraq, that Chechoslovia NO LONGER EXISTS, you did not KNOW that Putin was NOT the president of Germany, and on and on and on!! McCain is a BIG TIME LIAR AND DECEIVER!!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

suprise me
It's quite remarkable that ANYONE would be willing to tackle the chores of cleaning up the devastaion Cheney has delivered to America. The maggots like Exxon, Halliburton, Corsi, and Mary Matalin are feeding on the carcus.
The fact a LEADER who is smart, humane, principaled, and YEAH NUANCED is considered weaker is just embarrassing.
Suprise me America, and make a different, smarter choice, before I can't recognise my country anymore.

Posted by: mark | August 17, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I compare Obama to doing an amazing high wire act with no net, to an unfriendly audience...and he even stuck his dismount.
In contrast McCain pulled up on stage in a clown car and honked out "no abortions", "one man one woman", and "drill drill drill" and the crowd went WILD.
Within a week we'll see the polls, and know if the talented or merely tawdry performance was appreciated.

Posted by: mark | August 17, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

The question, "when does human life begin?" is one which the next President is going to have to deal, possibly in legislation he signs, or judges he nominates. If the answer is above Obama's pay grade, then obviously, Obama is not ready to be President. That pay grade requires answering all the questions, one way or the other.

Posted by: jameswcarter | August 17, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Andrew Atlanta

almost the same story appeared in solitsnaya's (sp?) biography about his internment...

and now two other POW bio's are being said to have similar cross in the sand stories...

that is bad.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Clearly from reading these posts, a large percentage seem to lack both spelling and thinking skills. An uneducated electorate will readily produce a dictator - ignorance is a tool happily used by unscrupulous powermongers. For close to eight years, we have been represented by a near-illiterate buffoon who has catered to the gullible. Not once, but twice, like the pliable sheep that we are, we have elected a caricature of a leader. The next election would be interesting except the choice is between basically 2 peas in the same pod. Until we have more than this 2-party system which caters to only those with enough money to run, we are fooling ourselves if we thing this is anything resembling a democracy.

Posted by: David | August 17, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

From a January 18 post on Salon.com

Abortion rates in the U.S. are falling

Days before the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Guttmacher Institute has released a national study of abortion. Its findings are something to be celebrated by pro-abortion-rights and antiabortion folks alike: The U.S. abortion rate is the lowest it has been in more than three decades. In 2005, the most recent year included in the study, 1.2 million abortions were performed; that's an 8 percent drop from 2000. Abortion rates are also falling at a faster speed, say researchers.

Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

and Jim many are reporting that his cross in the sand story has been in afew books...

other prisoners' of war 's books.

That's bad.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

and who in the heck said Mccain had "command of all the issues"

are you kidding...

he answered black and white answers just like George Bush did ugh...

he didn't explain any of the issues...

he just waved his weapons and his almighty knowledge.

He didn't even explain "why" he failed his first marriage.

He didn't explain anything...just we will "follow them to the gates of hell" meanwhile the smart candidate explains on the same questions that there is a heck of a lot of evil committed in the name of destroying evil...

McCain couldn't even tell you what "rich" was.

He did not explain a single ANSWER.

he used soundbites from his speeches and anyone who has been to see him speak (and I have) heard him say the same things he always says.

this is why we got George W. Bush and the country is going down the tubes...people think McCain's answers were smarter last night..ugh were you all listening.

Smart if you think Bush and cheney are smart I guess.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Statistics show that when Republicans are in power, abortion rates increase. When Republicans are in power poverty rates also increase. Abortion and poverty are inextricably linked. If you don’t like abortion, vote for the candidate whose policies are more likely to bring working-class income standards back up to where they once were. If you want to reduce violence in the womb, vote for Obama because he is the candidate most likely make parenthood affordable again. A McCain presidency will mean more poverty and more abortions for the working class. A vote for McCain is a vote for vacuums, a vote for scissors, and a vote for the nation-wide slaughter of the tiny human beings we should all be fighting to protect.

Posted by: Hilary Smith | August 17, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Jim Martin wrote:
In TIME magazine McCaine stated that the guard made a cross in the sand with his sandled foot. At Saddleback last night he said the guard made a cross in the sand with his rifle butt. He also added "we two christians stood there in silence". Liars always change the details when repeating lies. examine this carefully. It looks like a lie to me.

*******************************************
A lie? Really? I heard sandal but whether it was a sandal or the butt of a rifle, the experience still happened. It is only a lie if the story is completely fabricated.


Posted by: Andrew-Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Hard to tell whether Obama can or not, though he hasn't shown any signs of dishonesty <<<<

HUH?!?!?! Ok how about this for starters

Obama says he will be tough on terrorism and his website states “Obama wants to preserve the integrity of our borders. He supports additional personnel, infrastructure and technology on the border and at our ports of entry.” And they he will tighten illegal immigration efforts.

BUT

He voted against allocating funds for terrorism prevention activities, including rail and transit security. (vote #00185, 2005)

He voted against transferring funds allocated to relief for nations found guilty of human rights violations to additional funding for border security. (vote #0073, 2006)

He voted against providing emergency funding for border security efforts. (vote #0094, 2006)

He voted against increasing the amount of fencing and improving vehicle barriers installed along the southwest border of the United States. (vote #00126, 2006)

He voted to provide funds for health care and educational services to illegal aliens. (vote #00133, 2006)

He voted against legislation to protect United States citizens from election ballots being cast illegally by non-United States citizens and illegal aliens. (vote #00143, 2006)

He voted against supporting the Iraqi Government position of no amnesty for terrorists who have attacked U.S. forces and adopting a similar policy in the United States. (vote #00177, 2006)

He voted against increased funding to construct double-layered fencing and vehicle barriers along the southwest border and to offset such increase by reducing earmarks. (vote #00200, 2006)

He voted against funding for the Secretary of Homeland Security to hire investigators to investigate immigration laws violations. (vote #00201, 2006)

He voted against legislation that would improve Homeland Security by requiring that foreign ports scan all containers shipped to the United States for nuclear and radiological weapons before loading. (vote #00248, 2006)

He voted against prohibiting taxpayer dollars being allocated to entitlements for temporary workers or illegal aliens. (vote #00192, 2007)

He voted against requiring the enforcement of existing border security and immigration laws before amnesty can be granted to illegal aliens. (vote #00202, 2007)

Posted by: Scott919 | August 17, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

sorry meant to say "we are smarter"
freudian slip

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

While McCain offered weak bumper sticker slogans, playing to the conservative crowd, Obama was honest and reflective. McCain spouted pre-packaged bits of his stump speech (Drill now! War now! POW last century! Nothing since! etc. etc.). Obama thought about what he was saying, and most importantly offered reasons for his views. Obama sounded articulate and thoughtful. McCain, sounded practiced and ultimately insincere, especially when it came to his pandering to the religious. ("I've been saved," (by an heiress?) "I've been forgiven," (lucky you!) I want to "inspire" the poor (gee helpful!), I want everyone to be rich (marry big $$, like you, John!), etc. etc.)

Posted by: patmac | August 17, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

We christians need discernment when we are being fed stories such as McCains POW CROSS IN THE SAND.

In TIME magazine McCaine stated that the guard made a cross in the sand with his sandled foot. At Saddleback last night he said the guard made a cross in the sand with his rifle butt. He also added "we two christians stood there in silence". Liars always change the details when repeating lies. examine this carefully. It looks like a lie to me.

Posted by: Jim Martin | August 17, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

some of these statements on here...

are just like the ones who got us George Bush...

same things... stupid is as stupid does...and if enough of the country voted again with the logic of 2004 as these statements infer...

we as a country would be getting the rewards of a stupid country...

luckily we are not smarter even when we go off course a bit to not vote on fear and some of the weird logic behind these comments ...
Mccain was "strong and resolute" ...

that is not good to be if you are wrong...and inflaming has situations to make them worse.

Wake up we as a country can not afford to keep voting for cowboy dudes over brains...because (drum roll) that would be absolutely stupid and totally destroying our kids futures cause we don't learn.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

About the comment on when life starts ...

Those who think they know the answer, You are dumbing the answer down folks. Life is eternal and interconnected, living beings are just snapshots in time. It sure is above all of our paygrades to understand it.

But then it is above your school grade to even appreciate Obama's eloquent answer.


Posted by: Concerned Citizen | August 17, 2008 4:53 PM
**************************************
It's called an opinion: What someone thinks or believes.

If an opinion was a fact, then it would be called a fact, not an opinion.

And Obama's answer was a total cop out. Your statement about life being interconnected and than no one can really know would have been a far superior answer to the one he gave, because it would have at least BEEN an answer.

Posted by: None of the Above 08 | August 17, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Easy to see why Obama backed away from sharing the stage with John McCain in a series of town hall meetings. McCain was clear, direct and showed his command of all the issues....one right after the other. Obama searched for answers...rambled in and out of his competing thoughts, here to there..and then back again....McCain hit it out of the park.

To those who mention McCain mentioning Bin Laden in regards to evil in the world, Obama mentioned everyone but Bin Laden. Including you and me! Always 'Blame America First'. Does anyone else grow weary of a Presidential candidate constantly degrading the Country he wants to lead?

Posted by: dano | August 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Once and for all, any baby of and active of and active duty U.S. military man or woman born while that person is serving over seas is still a U.S. citizen. That is a fact of law. My son was born on Guam at the Naval Hospital. He has a Guam birth certificate but he is 100% a U.S. citizen. It would not matter if he had been born in Tazmania. He still would be a U.S. citizen because I, his father was and active duty military man stationed where the Navy sent me.

All of you who so desperatly want John McCain to not be a citizen are just tooting in the wind. By law, he is a citizen because he was born where his parnets were sent by the U.S. government. Get over it. Move on to the next argument. Stop wasting your time on a lie.

I loved the format of this debate because there were no empty headed news readers asking lame questions. I thought all the questions were great, no clock, the person had time to give a full answer instead of some platitude.

I thought both men did well and showed who they really were. The question of what justice would you not nominate to the supreme court showed the true nature of each man. Obama chose all liberals and McCain chose all conservatives.

It comes down to socialism or not. I choose not.

Posted by: Mark Wright | August 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

I am amazed that so many people posting here see Obama as "straddling both sides of an issue". It looks to me as though he is being respectful of the fact that people have differing opinions about things and humble enough to realize that others' opinions are as important to them as his opinions are to him. I want a president who will take different points of view into consideration before making a decision. Isn't that what we hire them for? Do we want someone who thinks they know what's best and tries to impose their opinions on everyone, or someone who takes other points of view into consideration and uses their judgment to come up with a solution that most furthers the common good in the long run? Someone who understands that there may be aspects to an issue that they haven't thought of, and respects others enough to listen. We've had the first option for 8 years. How is that working out for us?

Posted by: ilima1 | August 17, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

again as in 2000 and 2004

please don't be fooled by 30 second simple aggressive statements that are simply not true.

McCain for half of those answers were straight from his stump speeches for conservatives.

I hope everyone whio is saying Mccain "won" is not stupid enough to not see it is a repeat of 2000 and 2004...

act like a tough cowboy even if your answers aren't thought out enough or smart enough to cbe correct.

that kind of thinker / thinking is what got us HERE in the first place.

Mccain would be disasterous for this country. His shoot from the hip simpleton statements make situations around the world worse not better... and if you think statements that are as black or white as Mccain's helps in diplomacy or the congress...you haven't been paying attention for 8 years.

Posted by: dl | August 17, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

I was very Proud of John McCain last night at Saddleback. He is Truly the Best Candidate for the Presaidency of the United States. With his experience, sacrifices and Beleif in OUR LORD, he is getting my Vote. He will not aiver, stutter or wonder what to do in a Crisis.
That is why George W. Bush is disliked, because of his strength, never waivering and very wise. He is like a ROCK and John McCain is a ROCK. GOD Bless them and their Families, and America and Our Troops.
We can PRAY that GOD IS Protecting ALL.

Posted by: Billy Mills | August 17, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

For many weak minded Christians it's always about "abortion and gays", never about hope and ideas to help the suffering in this country. This forum was a setup from the start to unify these dimwits so they'll contribute to McCain. The topics that really should matter - like our gigantic financial debts, lack of jobs, our now worthless U.S. Constitution, and the world's hatred toward us - were practically ignored.

Posted by: Jimmy Jenius | August 17, 2008 4:15 PM
************************************
And I am sure that posts, just like yours, are exactly the way to bring those who disagree with you into the "fold".

Posted by: None of the Above 08 | August 17, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

I am sure that many evangelical scholars have realized that Obama, in the last night's interview with pastor Warren, presented a broad vision in contrast to the narrow outlook based on calculations for immediated political gain as presented by McCain. For example, to the question on 3 wise men. McCain Came up with the name of Patreus first. Nobody denies that Patreus is a war hero with a great strategy on war front. But, do you take his advice on matters whether you go for a war with a country or whethet you need to build a better rapport with your European allies? Second, on the question on stem cell research, McCain was hoping that the problem (conflict with prolife ideology) will go away once the research direction with skin cells shapes up. You need to face challenges, not wish them go away. Didn't Galileo stand up to the persecution of Christian Fathers who were against his theory that earth moves around the sun? Next, on the qustion about the approach one need to take regarding evil, McCain came up with the obvious name of Bin Laden as evil personified, and took the opportunity for political pandering. Obama, on the other hand, presented a broader vision presenting maby examples of evil wihich are both subtle and obvious, both internal and external. His approach is more from a moralistic perspective because he said we need to act with utmost humility here because sometimes we, in the name of fighting evil, tend to take the evil role ourselves. However, intellectuals only understand these differences. For the general masses, McCain's political pandering only matters.

Posted by: TwentyFirstCentury American | August 17, 2008 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Obama's comment regarding the "specificity" on the abortion question was completely preposterous..."above my pay grade" are you kidding me! How could answering this most serious question dealing with "life" of a fetus be above BHO’s pay grade? This was a dodge of epic proportions. BHO refused to state his position because he knew the crowd would find it totally unacceptable. Is this the "judgment" that BHO professes to have?

Posted by: Jon H
------------------
John, I believe Senator Obama was actually saying he is NOT God to determine when a man's seed and a woman's egg actually becomes a baby. AT least that is how I understood it. Science and Religion do not agree as to when a baby is a baby. Notice how the news pundits ALWAYS refer to babies in utero as fetuses and NOT babies?? Sometimes you actually have to step out of the box to see what people are actually saying. Yes, I know we are all used to the Republicans (Bush, McCain, Cheney, Rumsfeldt) working just within their little boxes and not looking beyond that. The Iraq war is a classic example, all went as planned to bring down Saddam, they did not look beyond bringing him down, they thought it was mission accomplished and never gave any thought whatsover as to how to proceed after that, thus not enough military personnel, not enough equipment and weaponry, not enough of anything for our troops to fight the insurgents and those who did not want us there. McCain acts on the "NOW" and whatever happens afterwards be damned. I truly believe McCain was in cahoots for the Georgians to attack the two smaller countries to help put McCain into office. He hates Russia with a purple passion!!! McCain wants another world war, WORLD WAR III...he cares so much about America!!! He continually states, he is for country first, yes, of course, McCain, we believe you, YOU believe in COUNTRY FIRST--AT WAR!!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

When does life begin? is it before you plant the seed in the ground or after you plant? Is there life in the seed or only after it is deposited in the womb? Was there life in ONAN's seed that caused God to kill him for spilling it? or was it because it would have received life in the womb? It is important for us to recognise that according to SCRIPTURE GOD, knew us before he laid the foundation of the world. Did life begin then? I believe that senator Obama's answer was very thoughtful, and unpresumptous and for those who only have an emotional feeling and not a spiritual understanding of what the Scriptures say about this matter ought to seek the counsel of the wise.The old seer wrote " Life I know not what thou art, but know that thou and I must part, for when and where and how we met, I owe to thee a secret yet" and that is still above my pay grade.

Posted by: Samiael | August 17, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

While I'm not thrilled by any candidate in this race, I must say that McCain tore Obama up last night.

For all of those who oppose "certitude" in a leader, just think what you would type of leader you get who can make a decision with conviction. The Abortion question and answer session was the most clear example of indecisiveness by Obama. At what point does he tell his daughters that they had rights? I sure that the father in him would have said "as soon as I knew you were coming, I would have fought to the death to protect you...." But, he couldn't. That was an easy question.

What will he do with the tough decisions. Example- "Mr. President, the Iranians and Russias have launched their nuclear weapons and they are headed to the U.S." Obama- "This is above my paygrade, let's assemble a cross section of the U.S. and hold discussions about how to respond. Perhaps, if we show empathy towards Russia and Iran they will recall their missles."

Sometimes you have to be prepared to make decisions with certainty. Its life or death. Obama has failed to demonstrate that he has the ability to make the tough call in even the most simple of scenarios.

Posted by: Andrew Atlanta | August 17, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

The posts here show just how much perception matters.

To some, Obama CLEARLY had the superior performance.

To others, McCain CLEARLY had the superior performance.

To some, both men performed well.

Posted by: Its All Opinion | August 17, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I get queezy when people start saying that America is a "Christian" nation, but who in the heck every decided it is a "secular" nation? If you want a secular government, move to Europe. The founders built our entire rationale for human rights on the moral authority of a "Creator." This is not a secular nation. We do not believe that government should influence religion, but faith, which is simply worldview, has an historic place at the table of American politics.

Warren's forum was objective and civil. We had a great opportunity to hear the two men speak their minds and hearts on a wide variety of issues. The evangelical crowd was kind and supportive of Obama in spite of the fact that he holds some views that they oppose. On some issues they clearly favored his responses over McCain's.

Last night was good for America and I am grateful to Warren and the candidates for allowing us all to listen in on a civil and meaningful discussion about the leadership of our nation.

Posted by: Brett | August 17, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Great,
The new Holy Roman Empire!

I wonder how long it will take all those "priestly folks" to start deciding who our leaders will be.

Last time I checked Americans are the people who ditched the "old/tyranical Holy Kings and Emperors" and decided to go live a "new" kind of existence.

I think most of us have. I wonder how the new paradigms will unfold. It is all quite fascinating.

Cheers

Posted by: Bubba | August 17, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

McCain seems obsessed with war. His conviction to defeat "evil" in such black and white terms frightens me. We can more effectively "win" by pursuing energy independence from the middle east.

Fighting a religious war with the islamic extremists is so 12th century! Just because McCain is old enough to remember the crusades doesn't mean we have to repeat them.

Posted by: Scott | August 17, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

To all of you who are believing Obama being an american citizen...it has been proven that the birth certificate is a fake. http://tiny.cc/Dx2Bo

And to you questioning McCain being born in Panama....Did you learn anything in history class? He was born to two americans thus making him a natural born citizen.

Posted by: Mary | August 17, 2008 5:11 PM
++++++++++++++

1. Put away the bible.
2. Stop inhaling substance.
3. Go re-signing up for some community college classes.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Chris: John McCain began his life in elected politics by changing his residence to a state and district where a conservative could be easily elected to Congress. Now he hopes to advance his life in elected politics by changing his beliefs and principles (think bigoted religious leaders, off-shore drilling for oil, one-sided tax breaks, conducting a “straight talk” campaign) to those which he hopes will attract the most votes. He is even in league with those who spread lies about him in 2000. Just what “cause greater than self interest” is he serving?

Posted by: Rich | August 17, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

And I thought we're living in a post-enlightenment era!

A politician who aspires to lead America, and the world, goes to talk to some guy who builds an empire on talking in tongues, having mind and heart meetings with the Creator of the Universe?

This is truly a joke.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

To all of you who are believing Obama being an american citizen...it has been proven that the birth certificate is a fake. http://tiny.cc/Dx2Bo

And to you questioning McCain being born in Panama....Did you learn anything in history class? He was born to two americans thus making him a natural born citizen.

Posted by: Mary | August 17, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Obama says it's not in his pay grade to say when life starts, but he voted for late-term abortion when a fully formed human being's head is punctured and its brain sucked out. Ridiculous.

Posted by: irishorse | August 17, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

For a supporter of someone who is supposedly going to "unify" all of us, you scare the heck out of me.

Posted by: JVH | August 17, 2008 2:43 PM
********************************************
What Obama supporters and Obama himself mean by "unity" is either you agree with us, or get labeled as racists and told to STFU.

Posted by: None of the Above 08 | August 17, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Thank you Chris for a fair representation of the conversations with Reverend Warren.

I want to say that in the interest of fairness, there should have been more than one cleric asking questions. There should have been Catholic, Protestant but not Evangelical or Born-Again, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, and Muslim clerics taking part in the conversations.

With respect to the conversations i, I think Senator Obama answered the questions thoughtfully and with good explanation about how he thinks, feels and believes. Using the word empathy in talking about why he wants to be President is indicative of his character. Hie is inclusive rather than exclusive.

On the other hand, Senator McCain lacks empathy for the rest of us. He is exclusive rather than inclusive. He is living in the past. Everything he said, especially the repeated war and prisoner references are things of the past. Isn't it time for Senator McCain to stop referirng to his prisoner war experience and leave the begging for sympathy behind. Or, is this all he really has to offer.

What was made clear last night is that we have a presidential candidate, Senator McCain, who is stuck in the past and wants to redo it, i;e. the Cold War, a different Viet Nam outcome, etc. He has no empathy for ordinary and NOT rich folks.

Then, we have a presidential candidate, Senator Obama, who looks at the problems of today and for solutions to them. He looks to the future with great hope and expectation of progress and a better life for all of us now and for generations to come.


.

Posted by: Peter | August 17, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Again Obama demonstrating his thoughtfulness about so many of the issues confronting us. In a hostile setting that clearly favored McCain, Obama nevertheless had a conversation about himself, how he thinks; what has influenced him.

For those viewers/posters concerned about the church venue, consider how each dealt with the questions: McCain's continual reference to the church audience showing disregard for his host and the hopefully millions of viewers who tuned in via TIVO, there is no question as to who is better suited for the job, Obama.

Obama was right in SF earlier this year when he used poor phasing to talk about how the religious right had held so many Americans hostage in 2000 and 2004 by making the issue of abortion and gun control the only litmus test for President. I'm counting on true Christians have come to their senses and realize that being a christian is more than those two issues.

Posted by: Ted from Lewes DE | August 17, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

mccain is a victim - as a tortured pow, mccain has PTSD, a permanent mental illness manifested by trauma - mccain was a bomber bombing civilans in hanoi when shot down - mccain is no hero and is not awarded any Valorious medals - mccain, to this date, believes the us should have won the vietnamese civil war - an oxymoron -

Posted by: wvdavidson | August 17, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

I like John McCain. Obama is always trying to figure out the right way. McCain already knows everything and has a simple solution ready to hand for all of the so called "complex" problems

Posted by: Philip Taugher | August 17, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse


Mad man in the white house


WASHINGTON — Senator John McCain arrived late at his Senate office on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, just after the first plane hit the World Trade Center. “This is war,” he murmured to his aides. The sound of scrambling fighter planes rattled the windows, sending a tremor of panic through the room.


Erik Jacobs for The New York Times
John McCain said he had consulted Henry A. Kissinger on foreign policy before and after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Within hours, Mr. McCain, the Vietnam War hero and famed straight talker of the 2000 Republican primary, had taken on a new role: the leading advocate of taking the American retaliation against Al Qaeda far beyond Afghanistan. In a marathon of television and radio appearances, Mr. McCain recited a short list of other countries said to support terrorism, invariably including Iraq, Iran and Syria.

“There is a system out there or network, and that network is going to have to be attacked,” Mr. McCain said the next morning on ABC News. “It isn’t just Afghanistan,” he added, on MSNBC. “I don’t think if you got bin Laden tomorrow that the threat has disappeared,” he said on CBS, pointing toward other countries in the Middle East.

Within a month he made clear his priority. “Very obviously Iraq is the first country,” he declared on CNN. By Jan. 2, Mr. McCain was on the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt in the Arabian Sea, yelling to a crowd of sailors and airmen: “Next up, Baghdad!”

Now, as Mr. McCain prepares to accept the Republican presidential nomination, his response to the attacks of Sept. 11 opens a window onto how he might approach the gravest responsibilities of a potential commander in chief. Like many, he immediately recalibrated his assessment of the unseen risks to America’s security. But he also began to suggest that he saw a new “opportunity” to deter other potential foes by punishing not only Al Qaeda but also Iraq.

“Just as Sept. 11 revolutionized our resolve to defeat our enemies, so has it brought into focus the opportunities we now have to secure and expand our freedom,” Mr. McCain told a NATO conference in Munich in early 2002, urging the Europeans to join what he portrayed as an all but certain assault on Saddam Hussein. “A better world is already emerging from the rubble.”

To his admirers, Mr. McCain’s tough response to Sept. 11 is at the heart of his appeal. They argue that he displayed the same decisiveness again last week in his swift calls to penalize Russia for its incursion into Georgia, in part by sending peacekeepers to police its border.

His critics charge that the emotion of Sept. 11 overwhelmed his former cool-eyed caution about deploying American troops without a clear national interest and a well-defined exit, turning him into a tool of the Bush administration in its push for a war to transform the region.

“He has the personality of a fighter pilot: when somebody stings you, you want to strike out,” said retired Gen. John H. Johns, a former friend and supporter of Mr. McCain who turned against him over the Iraq war. “Just like the American people, his reaction was: show me somebody to hit.”

Whether through ideology or instinct, though, Mr. McCain began making his case for invading Iraq to the public more than six months before the White House began to do the same. He drew on principles he learned growing up in a military family and on conclusions he formed as a prisoner in North Vietnam. He also returned to a conviction about “the common identity” of dangerous autocracies as far-flung as Serbia and North Korea that he had developed consulting with hawkish foreign policy thinkers to help sharpen the themes of his 2000 presidential campaign.

While pushing to take on Saddam Hussein, Mr. McCain also made arguments and statements that he may no longer wish to recall. He lauded the war planners he would later criticize, including Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney. (Mr. McCain even volunteered that he would have given the same job to Mr. Cheney.) He urged support for the later-discredited Iraqi exile Ahmad Chalabi’s opposition group, the Iraqi National Congress, and echoed some of its suspect accusations in the national media. And he advanced misleading assertions not only about Mr. Hussein’s supposed weapons programs but also about his possible ties to international terrorists, Al Qaeda and the Sept. 11 attacks.

Five years after the invasion of Iraq, Mr. McCain’s supporters note that he became an early critic of the administration’s execution of the occupation, and they credit him with pushing the troop “surge” that helped bring stability. Mr. McCain, though, stands by his support for the war and expresses no regrets about his advocacy.

In written answers to questions, he blamed “Iraq’s opacity under Saddam” for any misleading remarks he made about the peril it posed.

The Sept. 11 attacks “demonstrated the grave threat posed by a hostile regime, possessing weapons of mass destruction, and with reported ties to terrorists,” Mr. McCain wrote in an e-mail message on Friday. Given Mr. Hussein’s history of pursuing illegal weapons and his avowed hostility to the United States, “his regime posed a threat we had to take seriously.” The attacks were still a reminder, Mr. McCain added, of the importance of international action “to prevent outlaw states — like Iran today — from developing weapons of mass destruction.”

Formative Years

Mr. McCain has been debating questions about the use of military force far longer than most. He grew up in a family that had sent a son to every American war since 1776, and international relations were a staple of the McCain family dinner table. Mr. McCain grew up listening to his father, Adm. John S. McCain Jr., deliver lectures on “The Four Ocean Navy and the Soviet Threat,” closing with a slide of an image he considered the ultimate factor in the balance of power: a soldier marching through a rice paddy with a rifle at his shoulder.

“To quote Sherman, war is all hell and we need to fight it out and get it over with and that is when the killing stops,” recalled Joe McCain, Senator McCain’s younger brother.

Vietnam, for Senator McCain, reinforced those lessons. He has often said he blamed the Johnson administration’s pause in bombing for prolonging the war, and he credited President Richard M. Nixon’s renewed attacks with securing his release from a North Vietnamese prison. He has made the principle that the exercise of military power sets the bargaining table for international relations a consistent theme of his career ever since, and in his 2002 memoir he wrote that one of his lifelong convictions was “the imperative that American power never retreat in response to an inferior adversary’s provocation.”


But Mr. McCain also took away from Vietnam a second, restraining lesson: the necessity for broad domestic support for any military action. For years he opposed a string of interventions — in Lebanon, Haiti, Somalia, and, for a time, the Balkans — on the grounds that the public would balk at the loss of life without clear national interests. “The Vietnam thing,” he recently said.

In the late 1990s, however, while he was beginning to consider his 2000 presidential race, he started rebalancing his view of the needs to project American strength and to sustain public support. The 1995 massacre of 5,000 unarmed Bosnian Muslims at Srebrenica under NATO’s watch struck at his conscience, he has said, and in addition to America’s strategic national interests — in that case, the future and credibility of NATO — Mr. McCain began to speak more expansively about America’s moral obligations as the only remaining superpower.

His aides say he later described the American air strikes in Bosnia in 1996 and in Kosovo in 1999 as a parable of political leadership: Mr. McCain, Senator Bob Dole and others had rallied Congressional support for the strikes despite widespread public opposition, then watched approval soar after the intervention helped to bring peace.

“Americans elect their leaders to make these kinds of judgments,” Mr. McCain said in the e-mail message.

It was during the Balkan wars that Mr. McCain and his advisers read a 1997 article on the Wall Street Journal editorial page by William Kristol and David Brooks of The Weekly Standard — both now Op-Ed page columnists at The New York Times — promoting the idea of “national greatness” conservatism, defined by a more activist agenda at home and a more muscular role in the world.

“I wouldn’t call it a ‘eureka’ moment, but there was a sense that this is where we are headed and this is what we are trying to articulate and they have already done a lot of the work,” said John Weaver, a former McCain political adviser. “And, quite frankly, from a crass political point of view, we were in the making-friends business. The Weekly Standard represented a part of the primary electorate that we could get.”

Soon Mr. McCain and his aides were consulting regularly with the circle of hawkish foreign policy thinkers sometimes referred to as neoconservatives — including Mr. Kristol, Robert Kagan and Randy Scheunemann, a former aide to Mr. Dole who became a McCain campaign adviser — to develop the senator’s foreign policy ideas and instincts into the broad themes of a presidential campaign. (In his e-mail message, Mr. McCain noted that he had also consulted with friends like Henry A. Kissinger, known for a narrower view of American interests.)

One result was a series of speeches in which Mr. McCain called for “rogue state rollback.” He argued that disparate regional troublemakers, including Iraq, North Korea and Serbia, bore a common stamp: they were all autocracies. And as such, he contended, they were more likely to export terrorism, spread dangerous weapons, or start ethnic conflicts. In an early outline of what would become his initial response to the Sept. 11 attacks, Mr. McCain argued that “swift and sure” retribution against any one of the rogue states was an essential deterrent to any of the others. But Mr. McCain’s advisers and aides say his “rogue state” speeches stopped short of the most sweeping international agenda put forth by Mr. Kristol, Mr. Kagan and their allies. Mr. McCain explicitly disavowed direct military action merely to advance American values, foreswearing any “global crusade” of interventions in favor of relying on covert and financial support for internal opposition groups.

As an example, he could point to his 1998 sponsorship of the Iraqi Liberation Act, which sought to direct nearly $100 million to Iraqis who hoped to overthrow Saddam Hussein. The bill, signed by President Bill Clinton, also endorsed the ouster of Mr. Hussein.

Mr. McCain said then that he doubted the United States could muster the political will to use ground troops to remove the Iraqi dictator any time soon. “It was much easier when Saddam Hussein was occupying Kuwait and threatening Saudi Arabia,” the senator told Fox News in November 1998. “We’d have to convince the American people that it’s worth again the sacrifice of American lives, because that would also be part of the price.”

Hard Calls

Mr. McCain spent the afternoon of Sept. 11 in a young aide’s studio apartment near the Capitol. There was no cable television, nothing but water in the kitchen, and the hallway reminded him of an old boxing gym. Evacuated from his office but stranded by traffic, he could not resist imagining himself at the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue. “There are not enough Secret Service agents in the world to keep me away from Washington and New York at a time like this,” Mr. McCain told an adviser.


Over the next days and weeks, however, Mr. McCain became almost as visible as he would have been as president. Broadcasters rushed to him as a patriotic icon and reassuring voice, and for weeks he was ubiquitous on the morning news programs, Sunday talk shows, cable news networks, and even late-night comedy shows.

In the spotlight, he pushed rogue state rollback one step further, arguing that the United States should go on the offensive as a warning to any other country that might condone such an attack. “These networks are well-embedded in some of these countries,” Mr. McCain said on Sept. 12, listing Iraq, Iran and Syria as potential targets of United States pressure. “We’re going to have to prove to them that we are very serious, and the price that they will pay will not only be for punishment but also deterrence.”

Although he had campaigned for President Bush during the 2000 general election, he was still largely frozen out of the White House because of animosities left over from the Republican primary. But after Mr. Bush declared he would hold responsible any country condoning terrorism, Mr. McCain called his leadership “magnificent” and his national security team the strongest “that has ever been assembled.” A few weeks later, Larry King of CNN asked whether he would have named Mr. Rumsfeld and Colin L. Powell to a McCain cabinet. “Oh, yes, and Cheney,” Mr. McCain answered, saying he, too, would have offered Mr. Cheney the vice presidency.

Even during the heat of the war in Afghanistan, Mr. McCain kept an eye on Iraq. To Jay Leno in mid-September, Mr. McCain said he believed “some other countries” had assisted Osama bin Laden, going on to suggest Iraq, Syria and Iran as potential suspects. In October 2001, when an Op-Ed page column in The New York Times speculated that Iraq, Russia or some other country might bear responsibility for that month’s anthrax mailings, Mr. McCain interrupted a question about Afghanistan from David Letterman on that night’s “Late Show.” “The second phase is Iraq,” Mr. McCain said, adding, “Some of this anthrax may — and I emphasize may — have come from Iraq.” (The Federal Bureau of Investigation says it came from a federal government laboratory in Maryland.) By October, United States and foreign intelligence agencies had said publicly that they doubted any cooperation between Mr. Hussein and Al Qaeda, noting Al Qaeda’s opposition to such secular nationalists. American intelligence officials soon declared that Mr. Hussein had not supported international terrorism for nearly a decade.

But when the Czech government said that before the attacks, one of the 9/11 hijackers had met in Prague with an Iraqi intelligence official, Mr. McCain seized the report as something close to a smoking gun. “The evidence is very clear,” he said three days later, in an Oct. 29 television interview. (Intelligence agencies quickly cast doubt on the meeting.)

Frustrated by the dearth of American intelligence about Iraq, Mr. McCain’s aides say, he had long sought to learn as much as he could from Iraqi opposition figures in exile, including Mr. Chalabi of the Iraqi National Congress. Over the years, Mr. McCain often urged support for the group, saying it had “significant support, in my view, inside Iraq.”

After Sept. 11, Mr. Chalabi’s group said an Iraqi emissary had once met with Osama bin Laden, and brought forward two Iraqi defectors who described terrorist training camps and biological weapons efforts. At times, Mr. McCain seemed to echo their accusations, citing the “two defectors” in a television interview and attesting to “credible reports of involvement between Iraqi administration officials, Iraqi officials and the terrorists.”

Growing Impatient

But United States intelligence officials had doubts about Mr. Chalabi at the time and have since discredited his group. In 2006, Mr. McCain acknowledged to The New Republic that he had been “too enamored with the I.N.C.” In his e-mail message, though, he said he never relied on the group for information about Iraq’s weapons program.

At a European security conference in February 2002, when the Bush administration still publicly maintained that it had made no decision about moving against Iraq, Mr. McCain described an invasion as all but certain. “A terrorist resides in Baghdad,” he said, adding, “A day of reckoning is approaching.”

Regime change in Iraq in addition to Afghanistan, he argued, would compel other sponsors of terrorism to mend their ways, “accomplishing by example what we would otherwise have to pursue through force of arms.”

Finally, as American troops massed in the Persian Gulf in early 2003, Mr. McCain grew impatient, his aides say, concerned that the White House was failing to act as the hot desert summer neared. Waiting, he warned in a speech in Washington, risked squandering the public and international support aroused by Sept. 11. “Does anyone really believe that the world’s will to contain Saddam won’t eventually collapse as utterly as it did in the 1990s?” Mr. McCain asked.

In retrospect, some of Mr. McCain’s critics now accuse him of looking for a pretext to justify the war. “McCain was hell-bent for leather: ‘Saddam Hussein is a bad guy, we have got to teach him, let’s send a message to the other people in the Middle East,’ ” said Senator John Kerry, Democrat of Massachusetts.

But Mr. McCain, in his e-mail message, said the reason he had supported the war was the evolving threat from Mr. Hussein.

“I believe voters elect their leaders based on their experience and judgment — their ability to make hard calls, for instance, on matters of war and peace,” he wrote. “It’s important to get them right.”

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

The problem with Obama's philosophical answers is that, as the president in a crisis situation, he will first straddle the fence, then will have to "study" the situation, and then will have to correct his original statement, and when it's way too late, he will figure out what he thinks, or maybe not. Where's the action? This may be fine for philosophy or even constitutional law, but the process is not presidential. He's first of all inexperienced, and secondly, he's not tempermentally suited to make a good president. He spent time in a state legislature. He spent a little bit of time as a senator. In neither case did he ever act--really get into the process and take stands and win and lose--the way John McCain has and Hillary Clinton has. I don't think Obama knows how to act in a timely fashion. Frightening. At 3 am, I don't want Obama anywhere near a ringing White House telephone.

Posted by: kay2 | August 17, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

When do racists like Obama ever look good talking about "Faith" Chris? Why don't you report what he is doing to his fellow Americans in Illinois. You heard enough about it posted on our own blog! What Hispanics,Latinos of America don't matter to you? Obama is working on getting their vote right. Don't you think they should know the truth. You kept the Edwards story under wraps helping Obama against Hillary now this! No one ever would accuse you of being a good reporter but withholding damaging information about Obama should cost you your job!

Posted by: Your is full of it Chris! | August 17, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA is an ATTORNEY! You know, A LAWYER!
Understand that people, HE'S A LAWYER!
IF you elect him, YOU deserve A LAWYER president..... PERIOD!

Posted by: Anonymous
---------------------
And what was Bush? Wasn't he an oilman?? During his presidency, the oilmen and oil companies got wealthier and wealthiers, profits in the miltibillions. The upper middleclass became middleclass, the middleclass became poor, and the poor became poorer. Right now the oil companies and the oilmen pay less taxes percentage-wise than we do. Senator Obama wants the wealthy to pay their fair share proportionally to what they make. Some of these wealthy people do not pay federal taxes at all because of the many exemptions they get. We, the average folks, get what for exemptions?? $350 credit if we donate to charities and Good Will. The wealthy itemize EVERYTHING they give to such places, remember Bill Clinton and his used underwear valued at $2.00 each?? Senator Obama has clearly stated he would lower taxes for those making $150,000 a year or less. Those drawing social security would pay no taxes. Considering Soc Sec pays only about $700 a month, which hardly pays for your cheap apartment, I think this is a worthy cause.
McCain thinks that you are wealthy at $6 MILLION!! Then he tried to backtrack and claim he was kidding. He NEVER gave us a figure amount!!! McCain insists he will NOT raise taxes, he is lying to you folks!! With the deficit up in the TRILLIONS, who do YOU THINK is going to pay for this deficite?? YOU, YOUR CHILDREN, GRANDCHILDREN, THEIR CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN. It is going to take years and years to pay this debt off. McCain WILL raise taxes, he will have to! He is trying to pull a George H. W. Bush tactic....."read my, lips, there will be no additional taxes". Once in office, he was forced to raises everybody's taxes to pay for Reagan's huge deficit. It is no different today. McCain is telling you what YOU want to hear....it is call deception----to get YOUR VOTES. McCain does NOT care about you!! Did you not pick up on this last night at the Faith Forum?? His responses all involved his POW statas, his service to his country, and overseas issues. NONE about America's problems and evilness in our own streets. Senator Obama is reaslistic, he wants to "CONFRONT" evil and do everything we can to help resolve it, as he honestly pointed out, evil will always be, we cannot just get rid of it like you do a dirty diaper. McCain wants to END evil by such places as Russia, Iran, anything beyond our borders!! But obviously not here in the USA. Looks like McCain is so evil and corrupt he simply does not recognize it in his own backyard. McCain is NOT for America, being a POW is not a reason to elect him. We already know how McCain concocts stories, how do we know what happened in VietNam?? All we have are his inflated tales. Notice he did not admit that one of his lack of morals events in his life was selling out his comrades and the USA while a POW? He said it was his "first marriage" McCain could not have cared less about his marriage at that time, he was too busy chasing any skirt that gave him the time of day!! I have NO respect for McCain, I believe electing him as president is voting for several more disasters!! Have you not paid attention to where Bush and his Republican administration and Congress have landed us? It is NOT a pretty picture. The dems came into some power 1 1/2 years ago, everything they propose gets overruled by the Republicans or by Bush' veto. You need no further proof than how Bush and the Republican Congress treated Katrina victims!! McCain helped give them contaminated trailers which were making people sick!!

I would not be surpised if McCain made arrangements with the Georgia President to attack its smaller neighbors to help McCain look stronger on foreign poliicy. Please remember, McCain's guru, Mr. Black, stated that another attack on U.S. soil would be beneficial to McCain?? Did Mr. Black and McCain arrange for the Georgian attacks instead?? Hoping if Russia reacted it would be a "short war", just like McCain predicted Iraq would be a short and easy war and it would be over with in weeks?? I do not trust that old demented old man; he is too war and killing gongho for comfort! McCain would not hesitate to make mincemeat out of America if it got him the presidency!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

The problem with Obama's philosophical answers is that, as the president in a crisis situation, he will first straddle the fence, then will have to "study" the situation, and then will have to correct his original statement, and when it's way too late, he will figure out what he thinks, or maybe not. Where's the action? This may be fine for philosophy or even constitutional law, but the process is not presidential. He's first of all inexperienced, and secondly, he's not tempermentally suited to make a good president. He spent time in a state legislature. He spent a little bit of time as a senator. In neither case did he ever act--really get into the process and take stands and win and lose--the way John McCain has and Hillary Clinton has. I don't think Obama knows how to act in a timely fashion. Frightening. At 3 am, I don't want Obama anywhere near a ringing White House telephone.

Posted by: kay2 | August 17, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Obama's most difficult decision was to oppose a war that he was in no position to vote for or against? That he would never have to go and fight in himself? That he would never have to see his child or spouse go off and fight in?

Seems to me Obama lost NOTHING, sacrificed NOTHING when he made this "decision". (McCain on the other hand.....)

If THIS type of decision is what truly makes a leader, then I know of millions of average, hardworking Americans who must make MORE difficult decisions (gas or food? how do I pay to keep a roof over my family's head? how do I make sure my family is taken care of while I go off to fight a war halfway around the world?) who would be far more qualified.

Posted by: None of the Above 08 | August 17, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

It's a bit ironic that Pastor Warren encourages civil discourse and yet the comments here are anything but. Nice name-calling people, you should be proud.

Posted by: Clyde | August 17, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

McCain DID NOT HEAR any of Obamas comments!! They said that several times during this show. He just gave more intelligent answers and did not dodge the questions like Obama did. For one answer Obama said it was not for him but for a higher power or higher paygrade. More fluff...thats all we get from Bam Bam... the DNC is terrified- he is losing ground everyday. America is finally waking up to this dangerous radical.

Posted by: jimbo | August 17, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Very different goals. If Obama can cut the Rs share of the Evangelicals from 80% to 70%, McCain's margin among them is reduced by about 5,000,000 votes. Obama wins. Obama is never going to get the majority or even near a majority of the White Evangelical vote, he only needsto cutr the margin. BTW. a "child is the father of the man" obvservation. Compare the African American Democrat appearing with a Southern Baptist pastor before an audience in Orange County to the six-year old African American child attending a native school in Indonesia.

Posted by: Phrank | August 17, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

McCain clearly won the nite with clear consise answers while Obama was stumbling in non direct lawyer style of court room talk.McCain is is own person, while Obama is sounding more and more like a puppet.who is really pulling is strings

Posted by: g.scott | August 17, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Jon H posted@| August 17, 2008 2:18 PM
Obama's comment regarding the "specificity" on the abortion question was completely preposterous..."above my pay grade" are you kidding me! How could answering this most serious question dealing with "life" of a fetus be above BHO’s pay grade? This was a dodge of epic proportions. BHO refused to state his position because he knew the crowd would find it totally unacceptable. Is this the "judgment" that BHO professes to have?

Hi Jon,
Senator Obama did say he was pro-choice.
He also pointed out that women do not make the choice to have an abortion lightly.

Do you know any women who say “abortion is my first choice when it comes to birth control”, of course not!

Did you know that 60% of abortions are obtained by mostly Christian women who are already mothers?

You realize ROE V WADE will never be over turned because it’s such a wonderful wedge issue for republicans and a majority of Americans support a woman’s right to choose even if they themselves would not have an abortion.

Posted by: JAC | August 17, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

VOIGHT: My concerns for America
OP-ED

We, as parents, are well aware of the importance of our teachers who teach and program our children. We also know how important it is for our children to play with good-thinking children growing up.

Sen. Barack Obama has grown up with the teaching of very angry, militant white and black people: the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, William Ayers and Rev. Michael Pfleger. We cannot say we are not affected by teachers who are militant and angry. We know too well that we become like them, and Mr. Obama will run this country in their mindset.

The Democratic Party, in its quest for power, has managed a propaganda campaign with subliminal messages, creating a God-like figure in a man who falls short in every way. It seems to me that if Mr. Obama wins the presidential election, then Messrs. Farrakhan, Wright, Ayers and Pfleger will gain power for their need to demoralize this country and help create a socialist America.

The Democrats have targeted young people, knowing how easy it is to bring forth whatever is needed to program their minds. I know this process well. I was caught up in the hysteria during the Vietnam era, which was brought about through Marxist propaganda underlying the so-called peace movement. The radicals of that era were successful in giving the communists power to bring forth the killing fields and slaughter 2.5 million people in Cambodia and South Vietnam. Did they stop the war, or did they bring the war to those innocent people? In the end, they turned their backs on all the horror and suffering they helped create and walked away.

Those same leaders who were in the streets in the '60s are very powerful today in their work to bring down the Iraq war and to attack our president, and they have found their way into our schools. William Ayers is a good example of that.

Thank God, today, we have a strong generation of young soldiers who know exactly who they are and what they must do to protect our freedom and our democracy. And we have the leadership of Gen. David Petraeus, who has brought hope and stability to Iraq and prevented the terrorists from establishing a base in that country. Our soldiers are lifting us to an example of patriotism at a time when we've almost forgotten who we are and what is at stake.

If Mr. Obama had his way, he would have pulled our troops from Iraq years ago and initiated an unprecedented bloodbath, turning over that country to the barbarianism of our enemies. With what he has openly stated about his plans for our military, and his lack of understanding about the true nature of our enemies, there's not a cell in my body that can accept the idea that Mr. Obama can keep us safe from the terrorists around the world, and from Iran, which is making great strides toward getting the atomic bomb. And while a misleading portrait of Mr. Obama is being perpetrated by a media controlled by the Democrats, the Obama camp has sent out people to attack the greatness of Sen. John McCain, whose suffering and courage in a Hanoi prison camp is an American legend.

Gen. Wesley Clark, who himself has shame upon him, having been relieved of his command, has done their bidding and become a lying fool in his need to demean a fellow soldier and a true hero.

This is a perilous time, and more than ever, the world needs a united and strong America. If, God forbid, we live to see Mr. Obama president, we will live through a socialist era that America has not seen before, and our country will be weakened in every way.

Jon Voight is an Academy Award-winning actor who is well-known for his humanitarian work.

Posted by: Solyd_Truth | August 17, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

About the comment on when life starts ...

Those who think they know the answer, You are dumbing the answer down folks. Life is eternal and interconnected, living beings are just snapshots in time. It sure is above all of our paygrades to understand it.

But then it is above your school grade to even appreciate Obama's eloquent answer.


Posted by: Concerned Citizen | August 17, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Odd place for the 2 presidential candidates to meet up- after all, we aren't electing the next pope!?!
Mccain, based on his shady upbringing, military & history as a career politician, cannot be trusted. Hard to tell whether Obama can or not, though he hasn't shown any signs of dishonesty or the lack of integrity that Mccain has as an adulterer and member of the Keating Five scandal..his latest story about being the "informal chaplain" of his pow camp group is clearly a Karl Rove fabrication..
Let's get religion out of the forefront of politics- bad enough that the parties compel their members to vote in a block, disgusting that churches try to steer their sheep toward an individual or a party. While we're at it, enough of the "war" on terror- terrorism is a crime, little different than any other serious crime. We've got far bigger issues for our government to handle, rather than bombing the **ap out of the middle east and afghanistan, killing thousands in revenge and perpetuating the histeria of a handful of clever saudi arabian nut cases with boxcutters. Oh, and Usama Bin Laden is likely dead years ago- they don't want us to know that since the neocons are frenzied about keeping the American war machine and the defense industry's obscene profiteering growing. Not an endearing christian value now, is that?

Posted by: Ron Sampson | August 17, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Life began once, about 5 billion years ago.

Posted by: Sphere | August 17, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

McCain showed that he had prepared canned answers and that he likes to wrest control of a dialogue and tell his tired old stories. He jumped over the question about how his faith manifests itself every day, whereas Obama gave a solid answer to that. McCain came across as fake; Obama as thoughful and able to be conversant about matters of faith. What really bothers me is that Rick Warren ALLOWED McCain to take over, even after he had warned the candidates not to use the opportunity to repeat a stump speech. McCain did that; Warren allowed him to. People in the audience loved the simple-gonna get Bin Ladin, gonna make everybody rich- answers McCain gave. Obama is too nuanced and intelligent for most people. So, folks, if you want a partier in the White House, someone who doesn't have a clue about it means to be middle-class or poor, vote McCain. You will get what you deserve.

Posted by: ph | August 17, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Obama "I want people to know me well". Then all he has to do is clear up his name is it Barry Sorento or Barack Obama. There are legal documents that show that
Barack Obama attended a Catholic school in Indonesia as Barry Sorento. The paperwork filled out by his step-father, using the step-father's name and the paperwork states that he is a Indonesia citizen. So the step-father lied to get him into the school? Is this the correct story? You can go online and it is public information the Attorney's Registration Record and Barack Obama states clearly that he never had or went by any other name. Yet he never went by Barack Obama in Indonesia yet he says on all American legal paperwork that he has never gone by another name. How is this legal? Can anyone else in the general public just leave off some of your history if it does not give the image you want. The answer is no.

Posted by: Anne Washington | August 17, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain did a real great job of shoring up his base in one night. That is huge for him. The country is and always will be just right of center. That is how Clinton won twice and Carter won once. Obama is so far left of center that America will not allow him in office.

McCain brings a mix of social conservative views with some of the other stuff like helping the poor (without addicting them to government welfare) and believing the whole man made climate (myth).

America is starting to see Obama as an empty suit living on celebrity status. It is just not his time yet.

Posted by: commonsense | August 17, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse


"McCain resorted to the same campaign rhetoric and gave that preacher and audience what THEY WANTED TO HEAR"

No, he have instant uncontrived answers on his beliefs, not considered answers that he felt the public might want to hear.

Posted by: Billw | August 17, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

I am irritated that so many of the people who blog object to a church setting for the candidates to speak at. A lot of us out there shockingly are religious. Anyone can host a forum... Tolerance and respect were present last night and I have never witnessed "sane" politics more. Yes I heard more cheers for McCain but I heard a bunch for barac too. Stop focusing of the fluff and about what was said... How they answered... Not what political pundits are trying to force us to think.

Posted by: LaderaMom41 | August 17, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse


"McCain showed that he has a brain, experience and the courage to express his opinions or beliefs clearly."

McCain showed better judgment, confidence, and intelligence 5 to 1. Obama is clearly out of his league.


Posted by: Billw | August 17, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I am astonished that the so called evangelicals (I am a Christian who believes in Christ, but I am black so I guess I do not meet the qualifications to be called the name)dare to clap loudly when McCain says he will hunt down Osama Bin Laden until he can eliminate him. Is this not the group who is supposed to practice "Vengeance is Mine saith the Lord"?

Posted by: Carolina | August 17, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Obama was thoughtful with his reply as to when life begins. We once thought death occurred when the heart stopped beating; now we believe the brain either is functioning or is "dead" and that defines death. I do not think a religious leader to a segment of Christians should be the sole questioner of "values and morality". I think if this forum was to take place, there should have been a counterbalance of questions from a religious leader with a more liberal faith outlook. I am a Christian and attend church but have many disagreements with the good folks at Saddlebrook. I also think there should have been no cheering audience for either candidate. A president is president of all the people--evangelicals, catholics, protestants, jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Moslems and, yes, agnostics and athiests. I found this forum and the audience out of place in American politics.

Posted by: Priscilla | August 17, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I liked the format used by Rick Warren, which offered a “fair and balanced” opportunity for each candidate to respond to the same questions posed by the moderator.

I’m disappointed, however, that the discussion was conducted in a religious context. Both Obama and McCain are very intelligent people who, I am convinced, are closet atheists who do not believe the improbable fairy tales that constitute Christianity (or any other religious “faith”). It is sad that American society is not yet ready for honest leaders to explain their secular values, compassion, and “world views” without committing political suicide.

Posted by: Dan Kansas | August 17, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

"explanations for why they wanted to be president, a surprisingly difficult question for some politicians to answer. Obama centered his answer on the "basic idea of empathy" -- that any person born in the United States can be anything he or she wants to be."

So why did he prevent Hillary from becoming president? Hillary won the democratically conducted vote while Obama won the party caucuses...not a good way to win a mandate, but since Obama has nothing to offer but 10 minute answersto simple questions, revision, and compromise he seeks no mandate.

Posted by: rpatoh | August 17, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Yes We Can, how can we?
It's time to do things better in Washington DC. But how can they do better when the MEDIA has no INTEGRITY. It doesn't matter how much information is reported about others, if it's not done in humility or love it profit us nothing. I'm ashamed of educated people in the US MEDIA who talk negative about the WORLD.
Everyday you are accusing other people from other countries about immoralities.
The real question is ….do you know them and know yourself?
If Americans have a problem with free Trade, think about your own lobbyist and Wall Street who is bringing in foreign investors to out source labor and basic jobs.
People, there are others listening to the Propaganda which leads to destructive minds and the future of your children. Please don’t follow German Mr. A. Hitler, Bin Laden etc.

Posted by: glenn | August 17, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

On the question of what does "rich" mean... If you watched the program, there be no doubt Senator McCain was trying his best to be funny and avoid answering the question.

Senator McCain glibly picked $5 Million as a the dividing line between MIDDLE CLASS and RICH!!

I realized at that point he does not have the slightest idea as to what the average American earns or lives on.

If elected Senator McCain will continue to BORROW AND SPEND!!!

America cannot afford four more years of the same greedy republican policies!!!

Posted by: JAC | August 17, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: joeljim | August 17, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I have been listening to many of the political pundits re: tonight’s forum. I do agree that Barack Obama can take a lead from John McCain and incorporate life stories and life experiences. It helps humanize him and make him more endearing to the average voter. That being said however, McCain used these stories to shirk answering some of the questions and pander to the audience (A largely right-wing conservative Christian audience).

Per the political pundits, McCain’s “certitude” (inability to show thought to a question/situation before commenting) can be endearing to much of the electorate however, we just had 8 years of “certitude” and where did that get us? War, economic and energy crisis’, and poor global standing.

I ask you, when is the last time a Democrat has addressed a religious (more specifically a right-wing conservative Christian one) organization?
The very fact that Obama agreed to this forum demonstrates his ability to cross party/political/religious/ lines. His wisdom, consideration, and tolerance are just some of reasons why Barack Obama can and will make a great President of the United States.

Posted by: Bridgette ONeil | August 17, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Jerome Corsi Op-Ed on John McCain:

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/
index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=57678


http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view
&pageId=57354

Posted by: joeljim | August 17, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

I was very pleasantly surprised at the performance of McCain last night. In this type of forum I think he won hands down. I thought he was more direct and spoke from the heart and let words fall where may.

I think Obama was very thoughtful and deliberative but I felt he was more filtered, more inexperienced, and was more concerned about getting the most support on every issue.

I want somebody to lead and not play to the crowd. Somebody who talks from the heart. Usually you'll find the most experienced who do that.

Posted by: GPC | August 17, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Is McCain opposed to the use of IUCDs (intrauterine contraceptive devises) ?
These prevent the implantation of the fertilized ovum, which by his definition is past the "moment of conception" and therefore entitled to all rights as individuals.
Would he pursuit the ban IUCDs as its' use is clearly against "prolife" priciples ?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

To Joee: Obama was born in Hawaii (a US state), John McSenile was born in the Panama Canel( Not a US state). If you go to fightthesmears.com Obama's birth certificate is posted.Were is John McSeniles medical records ??? I would rather be an Obama nation than Bush wacked by McSenile. Which is the greater sin , adultery or abortion??? Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

For many weak minded Christians it's always about "abortion and gays", never about hope and ideas to help the suffering in this country. This forum was a setup from the start to unify these dimwits so they'll contribute to McCain. The topics that really should matter - like our gigantic financial debts, lack of jobs, our now worthless U.S. Constitution, and the world's hatred toward us - were practically ignored.

Posted by: Jimmy Jenius | August 17, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

George W. Bush has been a pro-life, good old boy and look how much trouble he has created for the USA and our allies. The single issue righteous right need to accept the fact that McCain is about to lose even though he reinvents himself every month just to satisify these fanatics.

Posted by: Tom in Alabama | August 17, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Respone to Joee:

Check out McSames's birth certificate. He wasn't born in the Continental USA. Does that qualify him from being president?

Posted by: dalgrep | August 17, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Just a note to joee: You are living proof that facts need never deter a bigot. Obama's birth certificate has been published and certified by the American hospital in which he was born, to American citizens. If anyone's citizenship is questionable, it would be McCain's, because he was born in Panama.

The real abomination in this election is you, joee.

Posted by: Dennis Berry | August 17, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Pro-life in politics. Murder Inc. in business.

Politics and (fake) religion as usual for Republicans.

Well, now that the New York Times has (FINALLY) picked up the story I can rest well knowing (I think) that there's no way that more than 90% of the typical Republicans are voting for a ***guy who married into a crime family***.


http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/opinion/17rich.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin
"“McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Interesting how McCain turned so many questions into a chance to kickstart one of his trademarked POW stories.

By the way, his "gut wrenching" decision to turn down early release was one shared by many other POWs, who ALL refused. To accept would have been a violation of the Code of Conduct.

http://www.military.com/opinion/0,15202,164859_2,00.html

Also an interesting coincidence that his patented "prison guard draws cross in dirt" story is identical to one told by Alexander Solzhenitsyn in "The Gulag Archipelago."

Just a coincidence too, that McCain is such a big fan of Solzhenitsyn he contributed a long essay on him for a book he coauthored.

http://www.nysun.com/opinion/solzhenitsyn-at-work/83117/

Posted by: skylark | August 17, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

obama studied constitutional law-for the people
not corporate law- for the gop

mccain spent time in a prison camp. mccain already gets a check fro being a vet .and Much bettter care than hes voted against for other Vets.
a homeless short timer multi nsc disabeld homeless vet i would be paying attention.

Mccain is a puppet - already it shows.

No one was able to purchase Obama!


Posted by: dc matthews | August 17, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

obama studied constitutional law-for the people
not corporate law- for the gop

mccain spent time in a prison camp. mccain already gets a check fro being a vet .and Much bettter care than hes voted against for other Vets.
a homeless short timer multi nsc disabeld homeless vet i would be paying attention.

Mccain is a puppet - already it shows.

No one was able to purchase Obama!


Posted by: dc matthews | August 17, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Do you people not understand that Obama is not even a US born citizen. He refuses to produce his birth certificate. Wonder why?
Ask yourselves, what has Obama stood for? Nothing. If we becme Obama Nation, we will be an Abomination!!!

Posted by: joee | August 17, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

I was taken by the way McSenile jumped on some question as if he did know what was going to be said.You put Obama down because he took time to think the questions over.I do not want an old white hair dude with his finger on the big red button in the white house. Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Murder, Inc., was established after the formation of the commission of the National Crime Syndicate, to which it ultimately answered. Largely headed by former mob enforcers Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel and Meyer Lansky

http://www.girlinshortshorts.blogspot.com/2008/02/john-mccain-and-mob.html

So McCain is pro life in politics and Murder Inc. in business.

How do you Republican "evangelicals" square that circle?

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

McCain's anecdotal stories were definitely pandering and similar to his speeches. The use of "MY FRIENDS" is so presumptuous. We aren't all HIS FRIENDS and his answers were boring and what we've heard before. He thinks that we're all too stupid to see the sameness and avoidance in answering questions that seemed to me as if he knew before hand what they would be and unless they have sound proof rooms in that church, I don't believe he didn't have access to the questions.

Amen to statement made by JR Boston: 'Republicans
have perverted the Christian faith by brainwashing evangelicals into believing that they should be so arrogant as to judge - or to make a political attack -on other people's relationship with God.'

Obama answered the questions in a thoughtful and thorough way which an intelligent person will do who has respect for others and who trusts that we are intelligent enough to make up out own minds while McCain resorted to the same campaign rhetoric and gave that preacher and audience what THEY WANTED TO HEAR!!!!!!

Posted by: Marce, SATX | August 17, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Being an IR and making over 300k a year I have to say Obama's assessment of the middle class and the rich was right on base. Whereas Mccains answer showed me how out of touch he is. Honestly people this is a really easy choice do you want a president that reminds us of JFK and FDR or do we want Mccain who would probably be like Harrison and die within a month of his presidency, Trust me I am a doctor!

Posted by: dem08 | August 17, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

What an interesting counterpoint last night. While McCain was well prepared and "on talking point", Obama was SO thoughtful, respectful and embodying of what America used to stand for, equality, freedom, respect for the lesser fortunate and mutual respect for the diversity of our society.

I was against this interview being in a religious venue as America was founded on freedom of worship and freedom of speech. To hand this interview to a particular religion and religious leader with their own agenda is skewed.

I am not saying this well respected religious leader is subversive, but the very nature of his Christian religion points the interview toward issues which are "make or break" based on the supposed "values" of this particular religion such as abortion and Christianity being the only religion acceptable to anyone, definitely NOT an American Value as all are to be respected in this "secular" country that values all religions to the exclusion of none.

The founding fathers wisely chose to support the separation of church and state as they realized America would serve many cultures, ethnicities and points of view. I highly suggest we get back to our roots and support the candidate that truly values the real America.

The choice is clear and it cannot be connected to the current administration as they have eroded our freedoms and sold the middle classes wealth to the Arab Emirates and redistributed it the powerful corporations operating in Iraq, such a pity. We need a profound change. Obama's message was clear.

Posted by: Phil Fort Lauderale | August 17, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

To the multiple people suggesting McCain knew the questions ahead of time but Obama did not...

It is possible McCain knew the questions, but if he did I would say Obama definately did as well.

Remember one of the last questions of the night? The one about the emergency orphan program? Obama said something to the effect of "Well I cheated on this one and looked into it before hand" (I don't remember exact quote but that's a paraphrase of it) Clearly Obama knew something was going to be asked about this so that he could research it.

So don't accuse unfair play, maybe questions were provided to the candidates before hand, and maybe not; but either way it was the same for each candidate.

Posted by: Dave Thomas | August 17, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I made up my mind this week about who to vote for in November. My decision was based on two things.

The first was Obama's Clinton issue. It is obvious that if Obama wins in November the Clinton's will cause trouble throughout his administration. We don't need THAT kind of distraction from the hard work that will need to happen during the next four years.

The second was Saddleback. I was impressed with both candidates but McCain showed that he has a brain, experience and the courage to express his opinions or beliefs clearly.

McCain has my vote in November.

Posted by: Marilyn | August 17, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Pro-life in politics. Murder Inc. in business. The man should step down before the convention. Call it health reasons- everyone will believe it.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/opinion/17rich.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin
"“McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

When are Obama and McCain going to speak in front of Greenpeace or NARAL. Seems like turnabout would be fair play.

Posted by: PS | August 17, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

I thought Obama was too conciliatory and "thoughtful" though I understand why he wouldn't want TV images of being booed by evangelicals. Still I thought he could have made the pro-choice argument better. Pro-choice saves the lives of women, rather than the unborn, which flies in the face of the paternalism that underlies the evangelical world view. McCain clearly sees nearly every issue in the world from a military perspective. When he sung Bomb Bomb Iran it was probably more of a look into his soul than anyone realized. The most nauseating thing of all was pompous Rick Warren sitting their relishing "the licking of his ring" by presidential hopefuls. Made me want to hurl!

Posted by: Anti-Pandering | August 17, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

I thought both men came across very well. Obama came across as thoughtful and McCain as experienced. It was a classic generational contrast - Obama the post-modernist and McCain the pre-baby boomer. Take your pick, but stop turning people into characteratures.

Posted by: JVH | August 17, 2008 2:31 PM
_____________________________________________

JVH, I'm an Obama supporter and agree with your impression. I thought they both came off well for different reasons.

I watched the forum after reading political blogs. I thought the conspiracy theorists were off. I do wonder if they removed McCain's SMS capabilities (i.e., cell phone). I don't think it showed in any significant way. I will say that this was more important for Obama as McCain's public persona is a known quantity. McCain reinforced that persona. Obama started writing his narrative effectively for people unfamiliar with him.

Posted by: AgeOfReason | August 17, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me, or is anybody else offended by this?

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/opinion/17rich.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin
"“McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Obama did a great job speaking in what was essentially enemy territory for democrats. This country has been divided by the neocons and liberals who each must have their way. Obama was thoughtful in every response esp. on abortion, showing that there is not 1 law on this issue that will please everyone. I was impressed with his ability to find a middle ground that everyone has in common: reduce abortion. McCain on the other hand is prolife AT conception??? This is emblematic of the types of policies Bush has pursued that have severely fractured this country.

I would like anom. of the previous comment to know that NOBODY has forgotten about 9/11. Most people just know Iraq had nothing to do w/ it.

Posted by: Philip | August 17, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

"McCain won because his answers where strong, clear and simple." - bloggers

Great, just what we need, another President who sees the world as "Good Guys and Bad Guys" and boils the most complex issues facing the nation down to 3rd grade declarative statements.

Plus how hard was this for McCain, he simply told the crowd everything they wanted to hear. Abortion..bad. Evil..bad. Am I the only one who is glad that Obama wishes to define "evil" when asked that question. Remember much of what we consider good or acceptable today was "evil" just 40-50 years ago.

I'm am not given a since security by a candidate who give concise simple answers. We need to think about the issues facing us.

Posted by: case | August 17, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

McCain seemed to be saying what he thought people want to hear...as if he had the answers memorized. Obama, on the other hand, thought carefully through each answer he gave.

Posted by: Wildtype | August 17, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

By all accounts, McCain acquitted himself very well in this forum. That should put to rest all the hateful talk from hateful Obama nuts about his age and mental acuity.

Posted by: John | August 17, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I enjoyed the forum last night, but I must say that some applause given for McCain were senseless. A quick but senseless answer does not solve problems if they are not thought out thorough. The contrast (no applause) for Obama was great. This tells me the people were prick to their heart to the life style that no Government can fix unless it starts in every home. Abortion is another matter, let us all get serious about our children future and the big money involved in abortion all over the World.
I will close by saying; A Nation can not indulge in EVIL practices to prove itself as a front runner for peace and democracy.

Posted by: glenn | August 17, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

McCain married into a crime family. A business network so ruthless that ***murdering*** is one of its practices. And you people think he's a good Christian and are voting for him?!!! Hello! Have you lost your minds?????? READ THIS!!!!


http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/opinion/17rich.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin
"Corsi has claimed (among other charges) that the McCain campaign received “strong” financial support from a “group tied to Al Qaeda” and that “McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”
As everyone says, polls are meaningless in the summers of election years. Especially this year, when there’s one candidate whose real story has yet to be fully told."
http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=57354

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Our President should have the freedom to tell Jesus Christ to "kiss my ass" because the United States of America is not and never has been a theocracy.

Life doesn't begin or end, life is eternal. When you choose to acknowledge it, to see it in this universe, is the issue.

How many Christians are "pro-life" and pro-war?

When do they choose to acknowledge life?

Posted by: self sycophant | August 17, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

God help us.


And i am referring to mccain.
I guess if we get him and those of his ilk
we'll fully deserve our fate.

Posted by: jatox | August 17, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Obama says pointed abortion query “above his pay grade” http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=27992

Religious Voters in the 2008 Election: What It Means for Democrats, Republicans

http://pewforum.org/events/?EventID=184

Posted by: rtfanning | August 17, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Lisa, don't you have a cross to burn somewhere in the name of God?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/opinion/17rich.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin

"Corsi has claimed (among other charges) that the McCain campaign received “strong” financial support from a “group tied to Al Qaeda” and that “McCain’s personal fortune traces back to organized crime in Arizona.”

As everyone says, polls are meaningless in the summers of election years. Especially this year, when there’s one candidate whose real story has yet to be fully told."

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=57354

Don't think the McCain mafia story isn't coming out. The NY Times just put it out there. Get ready.

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth and others freaking out over the "paygrade" comment.

GROW UP!!! Only God knows when life begins and this is his point. What do you want him to say, make up some arbitrary thing that he doesn't believe to satiate you? This is the dumbest nonstarter of an argument that I have ever heard. His entire response was focused on prevention so abortion is not necessary or even an issue.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Cal writes:

"Oh my God!!! Obama knows nothing about running a government-- that is plain to see. Would you hire the mail boy to run the company- Why of couse if his name is Obama. This country is in trouble if Obama is allowed to become president."

Hey Cal, here's a newsflash: the country is already in trouble. But nice job working "boy" into your post.

Posted by: Scribe57 | August 17, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

To the Obama is an Attorney poster! FYI:
We understand that you are an IDIOT

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

McSenile said last night he will follow Bin-laden to the gates of hell and get him , because he knows how.He also said we will win the war and he knows how to win wars.I guess my question is if he knows how to do all these things why would he wait until he is in the white house.He should also watch following anyone to the gates of hell, he might get sucked in. Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Rick Warren: "At what point does a baby get human rights, in your view?"

Barack Obama: "Whether you are looking at it from a theological perspective or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity is, you know, above my pay grade."


Translation: Kill'em all! . . .Let Allah sort them out.


/

Posted by: Lisa | August 17, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

http://www.girlinshortshorts.blogspot.com/2008/02/john-mccain-and-mob.html

McCain married into a crime family with links to the murderer Kemper Marley and Meyer Lansky's Murder Inc! Hello!

Have you people lost your mind? How can you support a guy like that?

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

So McCains biggest Moral failing was his first marriage.I guess the super patriot doesn't consider making a propaganda show for our enemy in time of war a moral failing.

Posted by: Greg | August 17, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

I am a Democrat and I think Obama did much better than McCain. We need to admit it.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

I think that before someone is elected President and has the power to influence the laws that are enacted by Congress and then ultimately sign or veto those laws, we as Americans have a right to know what his or her viewpoints and opinions are on certain topics. This person will also be appointing Supreme Court justices during the course of his Presidency. Therefore, we need to know what kind of viewpoints he has because he will likely pick justice candidates with similar viewpoints.

So, when Obama decides that the decision of when life begins is above his paygrade, it is disappointing to me. Are his views similar to mine? Would support legislation that I would want? Would he nominate justices that I would want nominitated?

When he answered the questions last night, I did not get the answers to those questions.

Posted by: Elizabeth | August 17, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Life is not black and white. When you put a trigger happy war monger in the White House who doesn't know how to think in all the shades between than you have the war in Iraq. McCain proved yet again he is GWB reincarnated. He doesn't ponder or contemplate the greater good he just reacts. This is not what we need for POTUS. We will end up in war in Iran and now Russia. Where does McCain think we are going to get all the troops and funding? He wants to defeat evil? How does he propose we defeat the evil in Somalia, Uganda, and other countries? Evil is a hard thing for one POTUS to defeat globally

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

http://www.girlinshortshorts.blogspot.com/2008/02/john-mccain-and-mob.html

McCain married into organized crime! How can you people defend that? HOW?

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

PROOF THAT MCCAIN HAD QUESTIONS IN ADVANCE.

Right after Warren asks McCain the abortion question, McCain asked "When are we going to get back to the topic of Supreme Justices" and Warren’s response was "we will get to that topic later on"... (and he kind of looked embarrassed)

However, they hadn't even gotten to that yet-it had not been mentioned- so how could “we get back to it?” as McCain said?? This whole thing was a SHAM and FRAUD!

Posted by: Ellie | August 17, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Mandelay wrote

Obama's "gut wrenching" moment? The Iraq War decision? Is he kidding? He wasn't even in the Senate to cast a vote.

As he said last night, he was running for the Senate and took an unpopular stand anyway.

Posted by: Tom | August 17, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Yeah we get it McCain, your a former POW. How that translates into be able to lead this country out of a economic recession,
bring forth new measures to sure up energy, and deal with foreign assets with objectivity and direction leaves me with a gigantic question mark???? Yet this is what this guy uses to project hes fit to be President?.. Nuts!! I say nuts.. People say now that's a patriot.. well yes I agree, put in in a @*&&^% parade or something, but President??? why I ask.. Because he tells bad jokes too?.. when hes not relating back to his former status of being a POW...??? Give the guy a talk show he likes attention.. Please do not make this man president

Posted by: emd1976 | August 17, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

I'm so tired of this abortion debate. I have no idea how old people are here or if they even remember WHY it was legalized. NO ONE WANTS abortion. The simple solution is birth control. So if you want less gubment, as I've been preached by the right, then get out of peoples bedrooms and out of womens bodies. How many of you have adopted children? If you criminalize abortion and you respect life, then get ready to mop up all the dead women from back-alley abortions. No one can say when life starts, that's what Obama said. I guess his comment was just too intelligent for the stupid american public.

Posted by: bubbles | August 17, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

I am a Democrat. Nevertheless, McCain did better than Obama last night. We need admit it.

Posted by: Brian | August 17, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Conservatives like things nice and simple - short answers that don't convey meaning and unfunny quips that really say - "don't worry about it, just elect me and I'll take care of everything"

And what's this fawning over Reagan all the time? Phenomenal is the power of mass movements to enslave the weak minded and get them to do your bidding.

Posted by: Rob | August 17, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/08152008/watch.html

Do yourselves a favor and watch the above. Finally a man who makes sense to all parties - his passion for his country is unparalled. Then read from the literally hundreds of very intelligent and thought-provoking responses from decent and concerned Americans. Brilliant. Should be mandatory to anyone who seeks political office.

Posted by: David | August 17, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Obama's "gut wrenching" moment? The Iraq War decision? Is he kidding? He wasn't even in the Senate to cast a vote. And when he realized he could capitalize on his "speech," he had to restage it to record it, as nobody was listening at the time. You should call him on this fabrication. A more appropriate "gut wrencher" for Obama should have been his dragged out decision to quit his church of 20 years. Oh, but wait, that would have dragged the whole mess into the light again. Can't have anything in the light with this guy.

Posted by: Mandelay | August 17, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

A Christian must demonstrate his faith in his everyday life. Jesus lashed out at the Pharisees for pretending to be religious while acting in ways that showed no faith and a lack of compassion for others. One man in this presidential race has consistently showed by his life that he follows the precepts of Jesus, in his marriage, in his strong profession that Jesus died for his sins, in his knowledge and use of scripture in his everyday life, in the tenor of his campaign,in his compassionate programs that leave no one behind. That man is Barack Obama.

John McCain says what he wants us to hear. I have no doubt that he prayed at his darkest hour, as many pray when they have no other hope. But I do not see a prayerful or God directed stance in most of John McCain’s actions and decisions in his everyday life. Many of his personal decisions have been blatantly selfish, he is confrontational and petty and has a nasty sense of humor, and his current decisions to smear his opponent at every turn shows an un-Christian mean streak. Be careful Christians, look at deeds and the honest heart, not just words and slapstick humor.

Posted by: katharine | August 17, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Exactly Sha - except Biologists and Doctors will be the FIRST ones who will tell you that they CANNOT say for certainty when life begins. McCain's answer is not even precise, since conception is not defined - what part of the cellular process he labeled 'conception' does he want to be enacted into law as sacred?

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

CHRIS -

JUST GIVE OBAMA THAT BIG WET KISS AND GET OVER IT. SPARE US YOUR FAWNING.


PALEEEZE


Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the guy who suggested McCain knew the questions in advance. Especially when he asked Warren when they would return to the question about the Supreme Court justices...that question hadn't been asked yet. Indeed, the FIX was in on this debate. If memory serves, the Viet Nam war over in the 70's. Time to move on. I know one POW from the Viet Nam era who resided at the Hanoi Hilton, and he never milked his capture like McCain...in fact he barely wants to talk about it. One more note regarding his moral dilemma...why didn't big John tell the audience he committed adultery with Cindi while still married to Carol?? One CNN commentator noted this was a generation thing...no sweetheart, adultery is not a generational thing!

Posted by: Orlon | August 17, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Who DOESN'T Obama kiss up to ???


Now we get it - the Puppeteers all want to be in the White House. Obama is Daschels ticket - it's why he gave Obama his entire office staff when he was NOT re-elected. Daschle wants to be Chief of Staff - so he can run the show like Karl Rove.

WE CAN SEE WHY HE BASHED AND RAPED THE BEST DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE. SHE WOULD NOT HAVE CHOSEN HIM OR BEEN A PUPPET.

Biden - he's been nice and smiling at everyone - in case Hillary won.

BIDEN and DASCHLE - both voted with Hillary FOR the Iraq war powers.


Well well.


Mr. Done Nothing NEEDS AN ARMY OF SENATORS TO DO HIS JOB FOR HIM.


BECAUSE HE'S INCOMPETENT


AND THAT IS WHY - PRESIDENT McCAIN WILL BE SWORN IN DECEMBER 2009


JOHN McCAIN "EARNED" THE JOB


THE PRESIDENCY IS NOT AN INTERNSHIP

AND ISN'T A BOYS CLUB HAND OUT


SOMEONE BETTER TELL MR. DOLITTLE OBAMA THIS IS A JOB HE CAN'T BUY


Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

For the person who asked about whether McCain heard Obama's statements: No, as he was in a sealed room.

McCain won easily last night with candid, clear and concise answers. Clarity over nuance.

Must kill this WP writer to not be able to write that the great orator Obama lost.

Posted by: donbl
----------------
Donbl, Senator Obama answered the questions that were asked, he did it with dignity and thoughtfullness. Senator Obama did NOT pander to the audience; he addressed Pastor Warren who was asking the questions.

McCain, on the other hand, used this forum as an opportunity to campaign!! He addressed his answers to the audience instead of to Pastor Warren. Pastor Warren LOST CONTROL of his forum. And that was a big shame. McCain did not directly answer most of the questions, but instead talked about his POW days. Just HOW do we know he is telling the truth? I believe McCain concocts some of his "stories" to fit the moment and people eat it up like candy! McCain KNOWS this too!! McCain also sounded like he was familiar with the questions??? Did someone leak the questions to him? Yes, I ask this although I do feel he failed to answer the questions directly....he went all around them them with his "stories". McCain is an old man who seems to live in his past and in decades ago, even the songs he plays in his dipicable ads are fronm the 60s and 70s. McCain is out of touch with the people with the last THREE generations, that's for sure!

Posted by: NinaK | August 17, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Note to Gary Palmer: You may wish to be aware of candidate McCain's academic history and performance before making a decision. It is my understanding that, far from professorial, he was a failing student in college. Can anyone confirm or deny this info? When I am making a hiring decision, I always select a learned and thorough thinker over an impetuous underperformer. That's a simple cut. Haven't we had enough problems with the last non- reflective party-guy?

Of further concern to me, given McCain's emphasis on his service record, is that he was also not a good pilot. It is my understanding that he crashed his plane three times, the last event leading to the injuries that most of us assume are from captivity...How typical is that? How expensive is that? Who pays for the side effects of serial crashing? Don't guys with crashing issues get grounded?

As for the religion question, McCain completely ducked it. We have all heard the Christmas cross-in-the-dirt story. What about the day-to-day role of God for McCain. We need to know HOW RELIGION INFORMS HIS LIFE. He did not tell us that. Why not? He had plenty of time.

Posted by: Karen M | August 17, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Why is a religious egoist even INVOLVED in politics? All candidates have to pander but this isn't a strictly Christian country. Some of us our jews, some muslim. We're still american. I would give this dog and pony show no thought whatsoever. And PRAY for the day (nyuk, nyuk), when we don't have to display our belief in the Flying Spaghetti Monster to get votes.

Posted by: torchy | August 17, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

YEP, John MCCAIN spoke of his trails as a POW.... I think that is GREAT, and I RESPECT HIM GREATLY FOR IT.... His stories speak to his CHARACTER, and the type of MAN that he is..... I am sure that if he had his "DRUTHERS", he'd DRUTHER NOT BE IN A WAR....
BUT, for all of those who have FORGOTTEN 9,11...... WE DIDN'T START THE WAR, but GW and John McCain have the guts to FINISH IT....
IT'S BECAUSE OF THEIR COURAGE AND RESOLVE, AND PEOPLE LIKE THEM, THAT OTHERS HAVE THE RIGHT TO CRITICIZE AND BELITTLE THEM....AS WELL AS ENJOY ALL THE FREEDOMS WE ENJOY IN THE U.S.A. Sometimes WAR is necessary. AND, I would say, anyone who doesn't think so, go live elsewhere.... GEORGIA would be nice this time of year.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Neither of these men excite me in any way, I feel that neither of them are the type of man we need at this time. The country is in a real mess and we need someone that can unite us.Both of these guys are so partisan, they will serve only to bring us further apart.

Obama in my opinion is the most extreme, he is a flaming liberal and if elected will swing this country off the map to the left.

Posted by: Ron From Georgia | August 17, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Obama, the master of equivocation, double talk, and indecisiveness ... typical of politicians that avoid direct answers to direct questions because they are hiding their true beliefs and feelings. What a spineless effete piece of work totally lacking in true leadership.

Posted by: occam | August 17, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I agree that this was a great format and I hope that we get more of the same. But I'd like to see follow-up questions. Any time a candidate says "we need to do ..X.." I'd like for them to be asked how they intend to pay for it.

McCain's plans for energy policy sounded great ("we need to do it all, we need electric cars, we need alternative energy sources, etc. etc.") but how does he plan to pay for all this if he isn't willing to ask even the mega-mega-rich to pay slightly higher taxes? At the same time that we continue to pay for the war in Iraq, which he wants to prolong? I don't think so. Obama seems to me to be more honest and realistic about what we need to do.

Posted by: Wendy M. | August 17, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

http://www.girlinshortshorts.blogspot.com/2008/02/john-mccain-and-mob.html

Would a Christian marry into a crime family in Arizona that has links to Kemper Marley, Meyer Lansky and Murder Inc?

McCain married into dirty money.

http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/2000-02-17/news/haunted-by-spirits/1

How can you people defend him now?

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Elizabeth,

With a household income of over 250K you are in the top 1.5% of household incomes in the US. I won't even go into how blessed you are to not be one of the billions of people on this planet who merely struggle for survival.

If you don't consider yourself wealthy or rich you may want to reconsider what words mean to you. From a global perspective you've won life's lottery and don't even know it.

Perspective is everything.

Posted by: Not Wealthy? | August 17, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Obama is putting forth a test of the American people. Are we willing to THINK about our problems or are we just going to blurt out answers based on something altogether different from the actual problem.

Abortion: There is no clear way to say when life begins AND have everyone agree. So there will never be consensus hence there will be no RESOLUTION. It does not matter who is right. We must live with each other and find common ground wherever it is hiding. Often it is right in front of us but we a blinded by our own fervent need to be right, which is of course selfish and counterproductive. Obama put forth this same argument in by not "skirting the issue" but by not answering an unanswerable question. Which of course would be falsehood. Which brings me to my main deciding factor from these two.

Who is telling me the truth and trying to unify us and who is putting me on there lap and telling me stories.

That as i see it is the greatest threat to America. Both the lies being put forth and the COMPLETE inability of the populace to discern lies from truth.

A foolish man reacts, a wise man seeks to understand. I do not intend to deride you. Please try to understand that...

Posted by: Andrew S | August 17, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Anonymous wrote
(OBAMA) wants to make sure the LEGISLATIVE BRANCH maintains it's powers..... SO THEY CAN MAKE ALL THE LAWS

That's their job! It's not the job of the Executive Branch or the Judicial Branch!

Posted by: Tom | August 17, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Thank you "Pastor Rick." The event you staged has given meaning to the bible and the book of JUDE.

Posted by: EJLima | August 17, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Obama's answer about when life begins - saying it was a question above his paygrade was not preposterous, it was logical. He means he's not a doctor or a scientist. Someone who has a greater understanding of biology and cell creation because that is the subject they have studied and their area of expertise. No matter how much you believe in conception as being a gift from god you cannot take away the science of how it all works.

The fact of the matter is - no matter what he believes it would be his job as president to make sound judgments based on facts, not religious beliefs. And the fact also is - this is America - his decisions have to be made with ALL of us in mind, not just one group of people who have a certain set of beliefs.

What's so bad about the idea of starting a the root of the problem instead of the result? If we can prevent unwanted pregnancies in the first place by educating our youth and giving them the tools to be responsible, we will greatly reduce the *need* for abortion in the first place. But I wouldn't dare take the right to abortion away from women who conceive from rape or molestation. But how do you put checks and balances on something like that without creating a bunch of liars who will claim those things just to have on and/or an unsafe environment for someone who has already been terrorized and victimized? All you people who are so quick to make this a black and white, cut and dry kind of issue need to take a bigger look. I want a president who will look at all the shades of gray too - Obama is that man.

Posted by: Sha | August 17, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Well-written summary.

Posted by: anony | August 17, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else see this from an interview with Rick Warren?

"TAPPER: Would you have compunctions about voting for someone who had cheated on his wife?

WARREN: Absolutely I would. Absolutely I would. Because if you can’t keep your faith to your most sacred vow – “’til death do us part” -- how in the world can I trust you to lead my family? My government? My nation?...Absolutely I would. I think people first need to ask forgiveness and then earn trust back over time. Can trust be re-earned? Absolutely but it takes time."

John McCain never 'asked forgiveness' for his adultery. Why does he get a free pass from Mr. Warren?

McCain apparently knew the questions before they were asked (which is obvious from the part about 'getting back to Supreme Court justices'). What's with this double standard?

Posted by: Jon | August 17, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I taught both formal and informal logic at the university level for thirty years. I have to say McCain used a fallacy called the "red herring (and there are none, of course)," about half the time. there is no room here to illustrate, but it works this way. You are asked what your criterion is for the commitment of American troops, and you launch into a speech about defending freedom and democracy, never specifying when when the problems are egregious enough to use military force. Naturally, everyone will agree that freedom and democracy is to be defended, but what about the criterion in the question? In one case he even prevented the question from being asked, again jumping on some expressions such as "freedom," talking about how important it is to defend it. The good Reverend did not bother to ask his question after that. By the way, what constraints or limits are we free from, or what are we free to do, if we succeed in keeping our freedom? For the most part Obama answered the questions asked, even if not to everyone's satisfaction! At least I know where he stands on certain issues. I know only that McCain was a war hero, but that was then, this is now. What about the future? This election is historic only in one sense: it is just like past political campaigns.

Marty from PA

Posted by: Martin Dako | August 17, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Would JOHN MCinsane suck a dick to save
american from a terrorist attack or would he NUKE those who looked wrong at JEWSYLVANIA.... UNFIT TO SERVE

Posted by: dk | August 17, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

http://www.girlinshortshorts.blogspot.com/2008/02/john-mccain-and-mob.html

Would a Christian marry into a crime family in Arizona that has links to Kemper Marley, Meyer Lansky and Murder Inc?

McCain married into dirty money.

http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/2000-02-17/news/haunted-by-spirits/1

Posted by: Corruption Anon | August 17, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

"Regardless of thoughts on abortion, what kind of leader says that it is not within his paygrade to render an opinion?"-Gary

Gary wants a president to tell him what to do, what is right and what is wrong. Your insane!!! A president must lead, a president must surround himself with powerful hands and minds for direction in all aspects. With this encouraging a perspective which is objective and therefore correct for a country that is free. Not bring his personal beliefs and create a doctrine that neglects more than half of the nation. To hold the silver bullet on the question of abortion that has two sides and a reality that casts so many shades of gray is simply asking for a rhetoric. I don't want to be told what to do. I will however follow ones principles by choice. Sometimes I really think the people of the United States deserve somebody like McCain. Simply put a bunch of dumb, inflated ego, sheep....

Posted by: ErikD | August 17, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I DID notice that he, OBAMA, wants to LIMIT the actions of the president, so the EXECUTIVE BRANCH doesn't overstep it's bounds, YET, he (OBAMA) wants to make sure the LEGISLATIVE BRANCH maintains it's powers..... SO THEY CAN MAKE ALL THE LAWS.... YEP, the SAME OBAMA that has a grand total of 178 HOURS of experience in the LEGISLATIVE BRANCH!

WAKE UP PEOPLE!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

As I wrote in my column on Capitol Hill Blue "POW! POW! POW! Take that Obama" ( http://www.capitolhillblue.com/cont/node/10518 ) :

We now know what will John McCain hopes will propel him into the White House. It's his 40 year old POW stories. He used his oft repeated tales from Hanoi to answer several questions at the Saddleback Church Forum last night and the audience ate it up. No matter that Obama gave more compelling, if complex and nuanced, answers to the same questions. American likes drama in digestible segments, and that's what McCain gave them.

Posted by: Hal Brown | August 17, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

In reality there in no answer to when life begins. You may have an opinion, but that's all it is. This is one of the mysteries of life that led mankind to develop religions to begin with, in order to explain the unexplainable.

And by the way, the rule of law is the only thing separating the civilized from the beasts. Lawyers are scholars that learn and practice this highly complex and evolved subject. Making fun of lawyers is showing your stupidity.

Posted by: Bob | August 17, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Let me get this straight - McCain is 'pro-life' and 'pro-bombs'. What utter nonsense. It's okay to kill once everyone's out of the womb - is that his message?

Posted by: David | August 17, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

losers---both of these guys.

Posted by: donna | August 17, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

http://www.nrlc.org/abortion/pba/PBA_Images/PBA_Images_Heathers_Place.htm

http://www.nrlc.org/abortion/pba/DEabortiongraphic.html

No wonder MoveOn & Soros hates Christianity so much ..it's in their way of an autocratic / central planning police state that uses eugenics as a tool.

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=27992

'BAMA


"He supports the late-term procedure known as partial-birth abortion, where the baby's skull is stabbed with scissors in the birth canal and the brains are sucked out to end its life swiftly and ease passage of the corpse into the pan."


Posted by: BruiserND | August 17, 2008 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Paying lip-service to mythology to win brownie-points on the value-front is pandering, period. It is also a violation of the separation between church and state. This pony-show should never have aired in the first place. Not in America. Maybe something like this would be normal in Iran, to show the candidates' devotion to the Sha.

Values have nothing to do with religion. Both candidates values have been shown through their action. Both public and private (what we have found out through the media) insight should give voters plenty of guidance for their decision as to who's best without having to play the Good Christian Card.


Posted by: Carl | August 17, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

OH, did I forget to mention that he (OBAMA) never answered the questions? He WAS good at answering it BOTH WAYS, so as to satisfy the masses..... HE'S A LAWYER!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, he's a LAWYER. Guess what the legislative and executive branches of government do? They make and execute LAWS.

We need a better educational system in this country. Books not bombs...

Posted by: JR, Boston | August 17, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Forgot to mention: Obama was wrong when he stated "factually" that abortions have increased over recent years. They have actually been on the decline and this is well documented. Thought this worth mentioning as Obama claimed his information as a fact.

Posted by: Lance from San Diego | August 17, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

So where have all the racists who insist on denying that a black candidate for president could be a Christian rather than a black-Muslim?
A good forum for Obama and McCain to reveal their positions on Christian faith rather than to be smeared by the politically minded smear machines, the racists, or the truly stupid and ignorant.

Posted by: eljefejesus | August 17, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Oh my God!!! Obama knows nothing about running a government-- that is plain to see. Would you hire the mail boy to run the company- Why of couse if his name is Obama. This country is in trouble if Obama is allowed to become president.

Posted by: cal | August 17, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

I find it humorous that McCain predicted his $5 mil would be distorted and of course it has been.

His point of "rich" is that he wants everyone to have the ability to BE rich. The federal govt taking away 40% of your income in taxes doesn't allow that. THAT'S his point.

Why be penalized for being successful in society? If I start a business that hires 2 people, then 4 people then 20 people then 200 people and I'm making a good profit, why must I be taxed more and more for being successful and employing people?

I'm employing 200 people!

That point is what democrats will apparently never understand.

Posted by: David G | August 17, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA is an ATTORNEY! You know, A LAWYER!
Understand that people, HE'S A LAWYER!
IF you elect him, YOU deserve A LAWYER president..... PERIOD!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

You are all a bunch of fools, following the sheperd of whatever flock you choose to belong too. Neither of them have the courage to tell the truth, Obama didnt lose and McCain didnt win - for that to happen the forum would need to not be rigged. You cant declare a winner or loser in an environment where the cards are stacked before it begins.

In the end it doesnt matter who ytou vote for, we will continue to lose civil rights, contineu to pay more taxes and continue to execute pointless wars around the world.

Posted by: fools_witness | August 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Well, well, well. And we thought Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson's brand of religion was dangerous. This "new" brand of evangelical Christianity is even more dangerous because it "appears" more hip, rational, and open. NOT. When US presidential candidates feel that they HAVE to appear at a Christian "inquisition" to be elected, we are in deep, deep trouble. The Constitution says there shall be no religious test for office. The "inquisition" at the Saddleback Forum is an affront to me. The temerity of Rick Warren and his congregation deeply angers me. Look I'm a Christian, but this is way beyond the pale. I don't like it, and I fear the long term repercussions to our democracy.

Posted by: Kitty from TN | August 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

The word is "fazed," not "phased" when describing being disturbed or not. So your job writing?

Posted by: French | August 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

I was pretty astounded at the reaction to McCain was really playing up the POW angle -- the audience ate it up. The story of the cross in the dirt was uncomfortable to me in how emotionally manipulative it was.

Then today I read that McCain used this in a political ad.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WTu7drLfRc

More potentially disturbing is that the same thing was written about by Solzhenitsyn in "The Gulag Archipelago", as desicribed in this dkos diary:
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2008/8/17/122230/161/239/569299

Is this a weird coincidence, that prison guards in communist countries are secretly drawing Christian symbols to inspire prisoners? Is Christ working through these instruments of torture, or did McCain take this story from Gulag? It's horrible to think and accuse McCain of stealing this story from Solzhenitsyn--could Solzhenitsyn have heard this story from McCain-are the dates right?

If McCain stole this story from Solzhenitsyn, will the media follow through? Man, this feels even more awkward now.

Posted by: Beth in VA | August 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

This was just about a perfect forum as one could scientifically hope for: very controlled environment with the same questions/table/chair/questioner/audience.

I had not made up my mind on who to vote for and did not expect to make a decision until much later. My vote will be for McCain. This forum showed me that Obama is just a "have it both ways" politician who lacks true leadership.

Posted by: Lance from San Diego | August 17, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Anonymous (can't you use a name? it makes it easier),

In my opinion, Republicans have politicized organized religion over the past 30 years. And that has not led to a revival of deep religious thought and feeling but to a superficial religiosity that supports war, greed, ignorance, poverty and sickness.

Our infrastructure is crumbling, our educational and health care systems are broken and our response to human tragedies like 9-11 and Katrina is that everyone should go shopping. If Jesus were walking and talking amonst us I don't think he'd be, like Republicans, all about war, ignorance, poverty and sickness.

I think the Republican politicians are FAKE. And I think they only care about money and power. That they've used religion for their political purposes shows me how sick they are. If you get that, well, everyone is entitled to see what they want.

Posted by: JR, Boston | August 17, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

McCain obviously thinks telling stories makes him presidential. He thinks that being bellicose makes him manly. I wonder what his core values really are as he changes directions and holds his "new" positions rigidly. as Bush clone. People should want more than regurgitated /bush

Posted by: nclwtk | August 17, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

THE RICH PASTOR DECEIVED OBAMA AND FOR INSTANCE HIS SUPPORTERS. HE KEPT TELLING OBAMA NOT TO USE 'STUMP SPEECH' TO ANSWER HIS QUESTIONS AND IN THE OTHER HAND MCCAIN WAS ALL ABOUT STUMP AND TALKING POINTS. THIS PASTOR IS NOT A REAL CHRISTIAN BECAUSE HE IS BIAS. BY THE WAY PASTOR, YOU KNOW WHAT MAKES A POOR PEOPLE WHEN YOU SEE ONE AND YOU SEE A RICH PERSON WHEN YOU LOOK AT YOUR MIRROR..

Posted by: lagoon | August 17, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Obama proved once and for all that he is an empty suit and not qualified to be president. McCain has more REAL experience than 3 Obamas. Obama lied when he said his hardest decision was to oppose the war in Iraq. Obama was in Illinois voting for petty state issues when the REAL Senate was voting to authorize the war. You can't say a vote is hard if you aren't even part of the dicussion.

Posted by: kmccorma | August 17, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

I thought this forum was a truly wonderful innovation in American politics. I think it provided the American people with a vivid, unfiltered contrast between the personalities, intellectual character, and values of the two candidates.

I think it's beside the point to say who won or lost. Really, they both won, because they both were able to effectively communicate who they were to the American people.

I think anyone who believes that one or the other won is merely identifying with -- or appreciating -- the character of one over the other. There's no need for spin here: we all got a clear idea of what McCain is like, and what Obama is like. Better than any debate or town hall in modern times.

Personally, I share nothing in common with McCain's values, and have changed my attitude towards him from dislike to fear -- I don't want someone with his values and character anywhere near the reins of power. Previously, I thought the Democrats' characterization of him as Bush's third term as a caricature; now I think it's far more true than even the Democrats probably realized.

But this doesn't take away from McCain's solid performance. I recognize that this is a reaction to getting to see what he was really like. And I understand people that feel Obama "lost" are having similar negative reactions to his character.

I've never felt I was afforded such a clear, frank opportunity to compare two presidential candidates. I hope we are offered similar forums in future presidential elections, and between vice-presidential candidates as well. A truly historic innovation in American politics.

Posted by: CarlinFan | August 17, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

To JVH: Please do not let me scare you I am just an old white women from Indiana who wants to see our country led out of this funk it is in.John McSenile is to old for the job and his policies are right in line of the current administration. Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

This kind of shameless pandering to an evangelical christian demi-god is a disgrace to both candidates. Given our broad religous diversity, this is truly disrespectful and un-American at a fundamental level and has absolutely no place in the political process. Most of the questions could have been most honorably answered "None of your damn business!"

Posted by: disgusted dave | August 17, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Both candidates survived unscathed and the event was a chit-chattish waste of time.
As far as the vote, I don't understand how any white person, even self-loathing, frightened liberals, could vote for Obama after seeing and hearing his mentor and spiritual leader of twenty years, Reverend Wright, speak at his church of hate.

Posted by: Larry Clifton | August 17, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Obama's dodge on when life begins shows that he is either not willing to pick a position and stick with it or that he has a position that he believes will be unpopular in the polls.

Everyone has a viewpoint on when life begins. This topic has been one of the most discussed in our country in the past 30+ years, we all have a viewpoint on it. The fact that he was unwilling to share his with the nation just shows that he wants to be able to remain vague so as to get the most votes. This is what I dislike about him the most.

I think the fact that Obama thinks $250K is wealthy shows how out of touch he is. I am not wealthy, nor are my friends. We are all probably close to that income range. DC has wacked out income ranges because of the cost of living. Same with NYC, San Fran and other big cities. Granted, McCain's $5M was really high, but at least it was an amount that everyone could say, yeah, $5M a year is rich. But, $250K a year? No, I know way too many normal people making around that amount who are not rich.

Posted by: Elizabeth | August 17, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse


Interesting to see how far candidates will stoop to dancing with religionists in order to appear mythologically enhanced, as if anything as shortsighted as religious doctrine or unreliable as the Bible could aid anyone in addressing important issues such as abortion, women's rights, healthcare, education, etc.

The President is the last person on Earth who should be donning purple robes when contemplating serious matters.

That being said, Obama tackled the irrational project best by pretending to value the opinions delusional schizophrenics, whereas McCain fit in very well his apparently devoted lunatics and promised "more of the same." By this I mean a devotion to ignorance and stupidity and a continuance of an agenda to dumb-down America and use Bible-Virtue as guidance to decision-making. This type of world-view brought us the Terry Shivo distraction, the idea to teach creationism in schools, the denial about global warming, denial of stem-cell research, hatred toward Muslims resulting in an endless war, etc, etc.

McCain stressed his ignorant approach (he depends on Wikpedia for most of his information we're told) when he said that a human has full rights at conception. What a moron. Ask McCain if he would run into a burning building to rescue a petri-dish containing zygotes.

Posted by: Carl | August 17, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

"Uh, uh, uh, ah, ah, ah, let me make this perfectly clear, uh, uh, uh." Cat got your tongue, Obama?

I've always wondered: Do they pay you Obama supporters to flood your responses on online forums.

There can't be that many clueless people in the US can there?

Must just be another sham from the campaign of "the one" who is really "just another one" of many smooth-talking (but hollow) shucksters.

Posted by: Uh? | August 17, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Twenty minutes into McCain's interview, he asked Pastor Warren "Are we going to get back to the importance of Supreme Court judges or should I...." Warren said "No, we're going to get back to that."

BUT McCain and Pastor Warren had NOT YET TALKED about Supreme Court judges. ONLY Obama had already talked about it with Pastor Warren.

This indicates that McCain either knew the questions in advance or heard Pastor Warren's questions to Obama and Obama's answers when McCain was in the "cone of silence."

Posted by: Tom | August 17, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Senator McCain was great straight answers to the point showed his ability to be a great leader and blew Obama away Obama side stepped every question and very very far from being the leader of America he is very unaware of (International) policy which at this point in our countries well being is needed very much Obama has no clue to what he should be doing thank (GOD) for John we do not need a rock star we need a (Leader) who will get things done Obama talked about evil on our streets how about (Cuba-Russia-China-Iraq-Many African countries killing entire towns -(Chavez)-Syria-the dozens of extreme Muslim radical groups and he talks` about our streets what a joke (Obama) always` finds a way to make America look bad he is so un American

Posted by: Michael | August 17, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Hey Lou, I honestly think that McCain lives in a state of pain and therefore is just an emotional guy.

Of course, that's part of the reason I don't want him to be making foreign policy decisions. Putin would set him up, just like Solazzo set up Sonny in the Godfather.

Posted by: JR, Boston | August 17, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Are all of you kidding me?

I am neither fan of either man - and wished we had the old system of nominating others for the job of president! However, still wanting to "make up my mind" I watched the debate last night and was DELIGHTED with the format! I really got to see the candidates thoughts, plans and their personalities.

OB was good - love his smile which seems genuine! However, he tried straddling BOTH sides of the issues on most of the questions and it didn't work!! I have noticied about him through the loooonnnnggg primaries and it shows his lack of depth about the issues. He won't take a firm stand on most issues saying "we will discuss or negotiate" which is what we have had too much of in politics. I call it paraysis by analysis!

It seems to me that by the time OB makes up his always changing mind, that gray hair and wrinkle will grow on the issues.

He "nuances" or "refines" his positions on almost EVERY topic he had opined about! I know, I have been copying ALL his and MCCains pronouncements, speeches, statements etc and have them for reference! THANK GOD for the Internet!

He is light on substance as showed in the debate. He is also a Marxist in his approach to government. Income re-distribution, control of the media, changing his mind on most issues tells me he needs more time to "grow" politically and philosophically. He is truly grounded in socialist thinking as is shown by ALL his proposals and statements: You can't eat all you want, you can't have as large a piece of the pie as you want, you can't sit on your couch etc etc.

HIs tax proposals and legislation clearly show his lack of knowledge about economics. You CANNOT say on one hand that the "economy is in shambles" and then say 'I will raise taxes!"

For those not knowledgeable enough to figure it out - TAXES on corporations are paid by US when we pay higher prices on goods they sell and produce! Look at CORN for example! ANd gas!! Further he has not learned the examples of history - WINDFALL PROFITS didn't work back in the 70's when Carter was president and we waited in line for 5 hours to get a half tank of gas, or at one time, 4 gallons of gas, it won't work NOW!!

MCcain blew him away and clearly piqued my interest in what he has to say which to date I have ignored!

To the pastor WArren: GO RICK WARREN!! I am going to send you a donation check for using your pulpit to provide a CLEAR LOOK at both men and in my view, MCC won!! AND....I hope it makes you even richer for doing so in terms of your book sales! Why should your income be taxed to pay for lazy folks like my neighbor who refuses to work? That is exactly what OB proposes in his plans.

MCCain has the answers, experience and knowledge to speak from which Obama didn't!! I think I have decided for whom to vote but I will watch more debates to come. It will be interesting to see if OB becomes more "focused" and less 'preachy!"

Posted by: helen sabin | August 17, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Religion and politics were seperated by the Constitution of the US. Well, we know what happened to our Constitution. It went to war in Iraq.

Posted by: remember | August 17, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

I don't mind hearing everyone view about when life begins it is when they begin making this view into law that I get worried because then they are telling me when I believe life begins! So to me freedom of relgion and freedom from religion is the same thing. Our country is already legally slanted in all kinds of ways to the Christian morality but for some their view of Christianity should be used and it is much more radical. It is a life and death issue, the life and death of religous freedom and personal freedom and the principles our country was founded on!

Posted by: Charles | August 17, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

JR, Boston - I'm not even sure what your post MEANS. I'm probably more liberal than an evangelical, but probably more conservative theologically than most of the people posting to this board. However, I'm pretty sure no "Republican" has convinced evangelicals to "judge" others relationship with God. Christianity, in its traditional form, has always been an exclusive religion, rejecting pluralism. I believe that is why the Romans, since you mentioned them, called Christians and Jews "atheists" since they rejected the Roman pantheon of gods instead of subscribing to Roman pluralism.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Obama's responded in a Reflective and Thoughtful manner directly to Rick Warren. McCain's responses were Bombastic and Pandering to the TV audience while disregarding his host. Rick Warren gave control of the forum away to McCain by allowing his consistent anecdotal stories and stump speech comments, thereby avoiding added questions. There was a distinct difference between Parts I and II of the discussion forum. In the sense of fairness, it was non existent as the promotional information promised.

Posted by: Lou R | August 17, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Ladies and gentlemen, forget saddleback, The Fix is BACK! Great commentary.

Posted by: Capilony the IIIrd | August 17, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Did the church build this "sealed room" specifically for this event or did they just happen to have one. Either the questions were leaked or he overhead them because there's no way you can argue Mccain wasn't prepared if he was answering the questions before they were even asked.

Posted by: Jeremy | August 17, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Don't worry. Our next president won't take orders from the Pope.

Posted by: norman ravitch | August 17, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

McCain and Obama both had good moments. But it's very clear there are two different ways they will govern. McCain's 5 million dollar is considered rich answer shows just how out of touch he really is. The fact that he even didn't want to mention why his first marriage failed, which was because he cheated on his first wife while she was crippled during a devastating car accident with his now former drug addicted rodeo queen. McCain just doesnt get it.

Obama's answers were more thought out, though I thought he could have been a little more personal and engaging with the audience, was very personable with the moderater as if they were just lounging at a coffee shop. McCain was definitely more engaged with the audience and less with the moderator.

Obama's answer on the abortion issue may have been troublesome for some people (why I don't know) but swung my vote his way. There is no specifics or right way to solve the abortion issue. Like everything else it has been a complicated issue since Roe vs Wade and is even more complicated today. Whether theological or scientific, there's just no one easy answer to dealing with the situation and what his comment meant is that it is an issue that only GOD can solve, not man. Pro Choice and Pro Life all have their valid reasons dealing with abortion but the fact remains that no government entity in the end should tell a grown woman what to do with her body or make a decision like that for her that will affect her either way emotionally for the rest of her life.

I was hoping for women under 18, one of the candidates would have something more defined in the way of having parental consent before one would even be considered being performed except in cases of rape and/or incest.

Other than that, Obama seemed very in control and command and even keeled emotionally. McCain though I thought this was his best public performance to date, is still too emotional and still a powder keg that is waiting to explode. That is too dangerous in my book in today's time.

Posted by: 2PACOLYPSE | August 17, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Connie from Indiana - I can see that you are a mature adult who knows how to be civil in your discourse (please not the sarcasm in my writing). Your use of the "McSenile" name demonstrates your sophmoric thinking. It's easy to put someone in a room where they can't hear the questions in a church of that size. For a supporter of someone who is supposedly going to "unify" all of us, you scare the heck out of me.

Posted by: JVH | August 17, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

"Only persons baptized by immersion in the church are considered eligible for the saving grace of the crucified Christ. So, my question is what do all the evangelicals have to say about McCain's religion? And what do they have to say about his style of family values?" -- Charlie1

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Here's what this evangelical believes: If McCain has accepted Jesus then he's saved. By grace alone. Period. Not by some social church activity. Acts 1:5 refers to people being baptized by the Holy Spirit. That should be more than enough.

Having said that, I think McCain is a warmongering madman and I will not support him.

But it is a sad state of religious and political affairs when Republicans have perverted the Christian faith by brainwashing evangelicals into believing that they should be so arrogant as to judge - or to make a political attack on - other people's relationship with God.

Republicans have led America down the wrong energy path and the wrong spiritual path. We need to stop blowing other people up and learn to take care of our own business. Rome fell from within.

Posted by: JR, Boston | August 17, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

To:Gary Palmer, last night was man vs grandpa. My grandfather use to tell us stories about the old days also.

Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Well, after Saddleback we won't have to worry about our next president taking orders from the Pope.

Posted by: norman ravitch | August 17, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Charlie:
The baptists do not "decide" who is saved and who is not, GOD does. Get over yourself.

Posted by: kitty | August 17, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Charlie1 - I'm not sure what church you attend, but I have attended Southern Baptist churches and you fundamentally misunderstand their doctrine of Baptism. Any Southern Baptist would be the first to tell you that they do NOT believe that you are saved by Baptism. Baptism is simply a symbolic gesture of one's faith as an Christian. It is one of the reasons that they do not baptize infants - they believe that a faith change must occur first. Please do not misrepresent a denomination if you don't know their doctrine. And for the record, I am currently a Presbyterian (who still doesn't believe in infant baptism).

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Yea McSenile was in a sealed room, every church has one, LOL.McSenile was back stage and Lindsey Graham was reading the questions to him.And we all know what he thinks about the rich.Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Fix,
I appreciate your balanced and factual review here unlike the tv pundits who immediately ill-placed a winner in this event. I had hoped that Warren would be balanced in his approach to each candidate, but it was not the case. I hope all Americans saw through the facade of this faith forum as nothing but a shill for one side and stump-speech making.

Posted by: Wanjiku Jones | August 17, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

It was Obama's job to prove (to an audience fairly hostile to him) that he doesn't have two horns and a tail. I think he did a good job of that for those conservative Christians that are willing to listen (and there are many that are).

After all, Obama doesn't have to WIN the conservative Christian vote, he just has to cut down McCain's lead in that demographic.

Posted by: Willythekorn | August 17, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

For those arguing that McCain just proved he is a "war mongering mad man," you obvioulsy didn't pay attention or didn't actually see the whole program. When he was asked to point out a point when he went against party, out of the many examples he picked his OPPOSITION to Reagan's deployment of Marines to Beruit. He knows when military can and should be used and when it shouldn't. It's sad that you can't see past your own blinding bias.

As to the forum - someone here wondered whether McCain got to hear Obama's answers. Again, you must not have watched the program since Warren explained at the beginning and again in the break between the candidates that McCain was in a "silent" room where he could not hear the answers Obama gave. The questions asked were the same and Warren DID say to McCain that he didn't want to hear McCain's stump speech on domestic issues, just like he did to Obama. Wow, you Obama supporters are scary.

I thought both men came across very well. Obama came across as thoughtful and McCain as experienced. It was a classic generational contrast - Obama the post-modernist and McCain the pre-baby boomer. Take your pick, but stop turning people into characteratures.

Posted by: JVH | August 17, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

For the person who asked about whether McCain heard Obama's statements: No, as he was in a sealed room.

McCain won easily last night with candid, clear and concise answers. Clarity over nuance.

Must kill this WP writer to not be able to write that the great orator Obama lost.

Posted by: donbl | August 17, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

I found out last night that Obama again looked and sound Presidential.Also found out that McSenile was a POW AGAIN and he still thinks he is funny. Why does he always have Lindsey Graham or Joe Liberman with him?McSenile must have had a nap he stayed up late. Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I was surprised that there were no questions about the candidates' religious affiliations. Obama is a member of the United Church of Christ. McCain is an Episcopalian but attends a Southern Baptist Church with his second family. Since he has not been baptized in the SBC he is not considered by the Southern Baptists to be "saved." Only persons baptized by immersion in the church are considered eligible for the saving grace of the crucified Christ. So, my question is what do all the evangelicals have to say about McCain's religion? And what do they have to say about his style of family values?

Posted by: Charlie1 | August 17, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Most folks will earn several million dollars in their lifetime. The very NY Times and WaPo that will tsk, tsk his off the cuff remark feature, "What you can get for $10 Million Dollars."

Yes, $5 mill is rich, whether in lifetime savings or yearly income. Obama answered income. McCain answered assets.

Get a grip.

Obama is telegraphing his tax raise. This wasn't exactly unexpected.

What Obama, as always, fails to mention are the loopholes, tax breaks for his Hyde Park buddies, and the other niceties of the Limousine Liberal Life.

Posted by: Obama the Waffler | August 17, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Obama lost my vote last night. Regardless of thoughts on abortion, what kind of leader says that it is not within his paygrade to render an opinion? This is the new politics? This is leadership? Is Obama afraid to tell us how he feels? Last night was a man vs. a boy; sorry to say it, but that was clear. It's the beginning of the end for Obama. Unfortunately or otherwise Americans was a decisive President, not a professor.

Posted by: Gary Palmer | August 17, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Obama seemed thoughtful and honest, McCain seemed emotional and honest.

I'd rather have leaders who have their emotions under control, than guys like Sashkavili and McCain, who are sanctimonious hotheads. People should never start wars due to a failure to check their bad temper. That's the lesson from Georgia and Russia.

The fact that McCain continually defined himself by his war experience is also troubling. He has scores to settle with the Russians, and he wants to do it on our dime when we have more urgent needs of becoming energy independent and educating our ppl to be able to compete in an increasingly competitive global knowledge-based economy.

My family has a long history of military service, dating way back. Nobody likes to talk about their war experiences, and people know not to bring it up. War isn't something that should be glorified. War isn't something that should be entered into lightly, as the Bush Administration, coaxed on by McCain, did. And wars shouldn't be fought to settle scores.

McCain is dangerous.

Posted by: JR, Boston | August 17, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Mccain just confirmed he is a war mongering mad man.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 17, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Obama's comment regarding the "specificity" on the abortion question was completely preposterous..."above my pay grade" are you kidding me! How could answering this most serious question dealing with "life" of a fetus be above BHO’s pay grade? This was a dodge of epic proportions. BHO refused to state his position because he knew the crowd would find it totally unacceptable. Is this the "judgment" that BHO professes to have?

Posted by: Jon H | August 17, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure about the format but it appeared that Warren ask identical questions to each candidate. Assuming that McCain watched the Obama portion, was McCain therefore given a preview of the questions beforehand. Is there a slight issue of fairness? Has anyone raised this issue?

Posted by: Charlie | August 17, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Why did Pastor Warren ask Obama to not use the stump speech and didn't with McCain? McCain's whole thing was a stump speech. Obama totally respected the format and answered more nuanced.

Posted by: Susan | August 17, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

McCain's rich remark spoke volumes of who is the elitist and out of touch candidate. He has never been middle class or poor and it is obvious he hasn't been particularly interested in learning about their challenges. I guess this is why he had advisers who called us a nation of whiners. I mean maybe to him having say, 4 million dollars would make him feel middle class. Obama on the other hand was raised by a single mother who had to use food stamps at one point to put bread on the table. He had to get scholorships and take out student loans to go to college. Every success he has had had to be earned the old fashioned American way. It is easy to see why they have very different perspectives on wealth in America.

Posted by: ldsrapha | August 17, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

I was impressed and greatly interested in the thoughtful responses that Obama provided. As an independent I have been on the fence, but several key things hit me last night. Obama really considers his answer to ensure all sides are considered. McCain struck me as having ADD and most of his answers were rehearsed. It seemed like he had a few stories prepared and no matter what he question was going to be he was going to insert the story.

The other major issue was that McCain focuses every single domestic issue on war or violence. I was shocked and perhaps the defining moment was their response to Evil. McCain could only think of Osama Bin Laden? Obviously the man is evil. He is going to hunt him to the ends of the earth and destroy him, but he has done nothing to support more troop deployment to his back yard and instead was focused on hunting the evil Sadaam Hussein, who while he was evil there are a lot of evil people in the world, how do you choose which evil people you are going to hunt down? This made no sense and I respected Obama's more nuanced and definitely better response. We need to confront evil down in our own streets and our own family, as well as focusing on individual people.

Posted by: Shannon | August 17, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

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