Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Liveblogging the debate--now with hyperlinks!

Important moment in history, blah blah blah. I'll spare you the background. It's 6:00. The atmosphere is tense. The Presidential debate is about to start. I'm with Sandhya and Shawn, two friends from law school.

6:01
They're setting the stage.

Everyone expects attacks. On McCain re: Keating, on Obama, re: Ayers.

6:01
Brokaw's on. Explaining that it's a town hall.

6:02
Still talking about the rules. 2 min. responses to common question, one minute follow-up. Side note: apparently, a town hall can be bad for a candidate, cf. Bush in '92.

6:03
Eisele is an asshole.

6:04
First question, bald white man. Economy on downturn; what's the fastest most positive solution to bail these people out of the grind.

Obama first. Thanking people, for now.

6:05
A "final verdict." Strong language from Barack.

6:05
Obama is rambling a bit. I think he should have just answered the gentleman's question, then thanked people when appropriate.

6:06
He's really saying a lot. But it seems a little disjointed. Almost...Palin-esque?

6:06
McCain uses a classic trial technique. Goes to the guy, answers his question.

He's talking slow and easy. I'm worried.

6:07
He's talking about how the problem has gotten severe. But, hello, that's the fucking problem the Republicans created. He really thinks we'll swallow this?

6:08
Who would you appoint secretary of the treasury? I don't think that's a fair question.

McCain says "someone we can trust." That sounds like vague Bushery. Mentions Meg Whitman, CEO of eBay.

6:10
Obama is on the attack now.

6:11
Just noticed that Brokaw is wearing a Livestrong bracelet. Cool.

6:11
Black guy asking question. Quite a hot burgundy shirt, beige suit combination.

6:13
Just tossed Eisele under the proverbial bus. Not sorry!

6:13
Still no knockout punches. Hottest story so far is the guy's sweet suit.

6:14
Obama responds to black guy. He's looking at the guy. He seems to be discussing like a professor.

6:14
I gotta correct McCain's history, Obama says. He's pointing out McCain's hypocrisy.

He's pointing to the record, now, showing that he wrote a letter about this, and no one acted.

6:15
Obama's doing well.

6:15
Barack is coming across half-Economics professor, half trial lawyer. Almost Bartlet-like.

6:18
Give me a fucking break. You wrote a letter Obama didn't sign? McCain, pull your head out of your ass.

6:18
Obama needs to set the record straight. McCain is full of shit.

6:18
Slightly retarded woman (?) just implicated both parties. Obama first...stumbles trying to decipher the question.

6:19.
Sandhya points out that it's "Mentally-disabled." I am shamed(?)

6:22
Eisele is a cad.

6:22
OK, so am I.

6:24
Brokaw asks for a straight up list of priorities. McCain says work on all three at once. The whole bar is laughing. Did I mention we're watching at Henry's?

6:25
Something strangely homo-erotic about the phrase "reaching across the aisle."

6:25
I just realized. I'm watching with the right two people. Sandhya, on my left, is the idealist. Shawn, on my right, is the cynic. Perfect.

6:27
Obama says he's gonna get rid of the earmarks, line by line. He's a con. law prof.; presumably he knows what he can actually do (unlike McCain).

6:28
He's talking about tax policies a lot.

6:28
Brokaw's chastising about time: "we'll have more bills than the government."

6:29
Next question. What sacrifices will they ask us to make?

6:29
Shawn calls me out for pigeonholing him as a cynic. Damn. But he's right. Re: sacrifice, Shawn points out that Carter was ridiculed for suggesting turning down your thermostat.

6:29
Claims he's going to cut defense spending? I'm confused...didn't he criticize Obama for cutting funding from troops?

6:30
Barack just 9/11'd up. Oh fuck.

6:31
Sandhya fears that McCain will go to military record.

Obama ridicules Bush's "Go out and shop."

Obama is talking about offshore drilling? I...don't understand.

6:32
I think he's saying that these options are not mutually exclusive.

I think what he's saying is that, no matter which option you like, we all have to work. That is about sacrifice.

Now he says he wants to double the Peace Corps. He is still talking about sacrifice, "led by Washington."

6:33
Weird question with "drunkenness metaphor."

6:34
Obama repeats: Spending side, revenue side. Then another earmark attack.

I'm not sure if he's really answering the question.

6:34
Apparently "a woman in the front row looks like Dustin Hoffman?" Hell, that could BE Dustin Hoffman.

6:35
McCain claims that Obama's plan is like nailing jello to the wall (?)

Now he's criticizing, the "tax increases."

NOW he's talking about Senator Obama's "secret": the exact same "50% of businesses attack" from last time.

6:38
I think Brokaw just bitch-slapped Obama...

6:38
Yeah, he's not going to respond to the lying tax attack.

6:40
Still on about tax policies. Tax cuts. What's not fair, what doesn't work. I think he should move on.

6:41
"I'll answer the question." More McCain snarkiness.

6:41
McCain makes an experience attack.

6:43
Candidates both breaking rules, Brokaw points out. Next question re: inspiring Congress to act on the issue of the environment.

6:44
McCain advocating nuclear power that's not necessarily safe for disposal.

But now he's talking about green technology. He seems to be contradicting himself.

6:45
Obama talking about a leap forward like the computer. Technically, everyone thinks McCain can't use one. He must have learned by now, though...

6:46
Apparently, Barack is for nuclear power too...ugh. Henry's doesn't like this one.

6:46
Points out that McCain had a record of fucking up.

6:47
He supports drilling. But we have 3% of reserves, use 25% of oil. So we can't drill out of the problem. That makes sense, I think.

6:48
Who wrote that last question? Sarah fucking Palin?

6:49
"That one?" I think that was out of line.

6:51
Explaining his health care plan now. Sounds like it makes sense. Here's what happens if you do have insurance, here's what happens if you don't.

6:52
Points out that McCain wants to tax health care benefits. McCain talking about "community health centers"--that sounds like a clinic. I think the public health people will be against this.

6:53
Now he's saying..."Senator Obama will fine you?" Or is he saying "find you?" Just what is Senator Obama allegedly going to do?

6:56
Just taking a moment to think about what is at stake in this election. Boy howdy, do I hope this works out.

6:56
He's talking about a matter of administrative law. A fine? How much is the fine?

6:56
"Health care is a right for every American." That drew applause from the bar. This turns it on McCain, I guess.

6:57
Obama talking over McCain now. Still talking about what he will actually do.

6:57
Sandhya points out that there are no Asian-Americans in the audience, but then muses that this may be this is taking place in Tennessee.

6:58
I think Obama landed a punch; lot of applause in the bar.

6:59
McCain still on about the fine. He seems rattled on the next question, re: foreign policy.

7:00
Here we go. "America's the greatest force for good in the History of the World." American exceptionalism. Questioning Obama's experience. Claiming this is a matter of judgment. "No time for on the job training."

7:02
Obama was ready for this one. Wrong judgment? How about Iraq? How about "cheerleading Bush"?

7:03
Obama points out that we could really use the 79 billion dollar surplus in Iraq right here.

7:03
We can't do anything about the genocide in Darfur because resources are depleted. Obama will go into Darfur, he says, but we gotta make some changes first.

7:04
What's the Obama Doctrine? Moral issues are at stake, says Obama. He's invoking the Holocaust. Now McCain will take a go at flattering Israel.

7:05
We can't do everything at once. We gotta use judgment, and allies. That's what Obama says he'll do.

7:06
McCain claims to have a "cool hand at the tiller."

7:08
Ah, there it is. McCain says "Never Again" re: the holocaust.

7:09
Wonder if Obama baited McCain on this one?

7:09
Obama is talking about people in Afghanistan plotting to kill Americans right now. Oh dear.

7:10
Obama wants to change relations with Pakistan, expand non-military aid to Pakistan, insist that they have Bin Laden taken out. Or else we WILL take him out.

7:11
McCain just named Roosevelt as his hero.

7:11
Shawn: I think he just badmouthed Obama's big stick.
Sandhya: Did you make a joke about a big stick? You did, didn't you?
Me: Eisele's a hound.
Sandhya: Yeah. But isn't that positive? I like dogs, that's why.

7:13
Wazirastan?

7:13
Obama follow-up. Brokaw says he's "hired help."

7:13
Obama keeps saying "pah-ki-stan" (correct).

7:14
Clarifying his policy. Pointing out McCain's attack directly. The guy who sang "Bomb Iran." Not an example of "speaking softly." Not bad.

7:14
Yeah, I think Obama landed a punch there.

7:15
Obama defends himself on his record. Going back to the experience attack. Another cheesy "my friends."

7:16
Failure in Afghanistan. Brokaw wants to know how the candidates would reorganize.

7:17
Obama: Our guy in Afghanistan needs help.

7:17
Huh, Obama blames Karzai? Didn't see that coming.

7:17
McCain cites Petraeus. Once at the beginning, once at the end. Putting it all on Petraeus.

7:20
Re: Cold War, McCain is other-izing Putin. Claiming that Putin is after Ukraine. Obama should point out that we can't send troops into Russia or Ukraine or Georgia without a draft.

7:21
Talking about "international pressure" on Russia.

7:23
Brokaw: "This is a yes or no question. " Is Russia an evil empire?

7:24
Obama: They've done evil things.

7:24
McCain seems to be dodging the question: "Maybe."

7:30
Lost the plot due to my computer's battery dying. Set up on Shawn's now.

Now on last question: What don't you know, and how will you learn it?

Obama: My wife knows, and most of the time I ask her.

Then: It's never the challenges you expect, it's the challenges you don't. But this country gave me opportunity.

7:30
He's talking about public scholarships, social programs, that have propelled him to success. Are we going to pass on the same American dream to the next generation, he asks? He's got a good narrative going.

7:31
He's talking about a better life. That's what's at stake. This sounds really good, I think.

7:32
McCain: I don't know what's going to happen. Like all of us. Challenges around the world, new and different...we'll be talking about countries we can't locate on a map? That didn't play well at Henry's.

7:33
Invoking a single mom, his time as a prisoner of war. Having people pick you up and put you back in the fight.

7:33
He's leaning pretty heavily on the military record. Again with the steady hand at the tiller.

7:34
Whew, and that's it. I can only wait to see what happens in the polls.

7:42
Well, at least the entire bar is talking...

1 comment:

Ryan K said...

Your repetitive citing of Eisele as a number of demonstrative phrases reminds me of Marmaduke Explained.