Friday, October 3, 2008

the moment

the moment of the debate that provided a clear "shift" for me was when joe biden talked about his family history, almost as much for what joe biden said as for what sarah palin failed to say. this was her opportunity, i think, to show some class, some compassion, some empathy. instead she went right back to her notecards.


  1. There is just no room for spontaneous comments. She was rehearsed and rehearsed and rehearsed. Biden was commanding and demonstrated a complete grasp of the issues. Palin? Out of her league. I finished watching feeling pretty good about it. No huge gaffes, but no evidence on her part that she has any of the skills needed to lead the country in this day and age. Don't you think even conservative voters will see that?

  2. I loved how she would start talking after a question by saying, "I have some facts on that issue, and I'm going to tell you those facts now." That was the opening sentence I wrote for a persuasive paper in 7th grade.

    -- chris

  3. good points, malcolm.

    so palin went back to her notecards. she could have acknowledged joe's loss, yes. but then that puts her at a disadvantage. it's a debate not a sunday social. joe had his moment and i don't think it was written in his notecards - it happened. why should palin react any differently?

    and tony you know how much i love joe biden, so it's not like i'm pro-palin...or anti-palin for that matter.

  4. i am sick of palin referring to mccain as the "maverick" every other fucking sentence. someone needs to give john another nickname. this is gonna rub off and i won't be able to watch the tv show anymore, dammit!

  5. jeff. it may not have been a sunday social, but palin was certainly folksy enough for a gunny-sack race and a moon-pie!

    look, i was so moved by joe's choking up. for me, it was the only real moment from the entire evening. and i was honesly surprised that palin did not acknowledge it, or honor it in some tiny way. tiny. not take advantage of it at all, but just...a little moment.

    maybe she didn't even need to say anything, just breath and give it some air. or a little mention, backing away a bit. "gwen, i'd like to take a moment." breath. "can we please move on to the next question?"

    i know it could have been disastrous. but it also could have been a touching, genuine bit of empathy.

    i thought she did absolutely nothing, and totally missed the boat.

  6. personally...i would have acknowledged it verbally. that's me and i understand where you're coming from.

    i knew biden would beat palin in the debate. most thought he'd kill here. he beat her but he didn't kill her.

    like mccain, like biden. what to do?

  7. But for her to have acknowledged the moment, she would have had to have been LISTENING. Which she never did. Even to the questions she was asked.

  8. If McCain was a maverick at one time, he is now a gelding - and all for the chance at the oval office.

  9. What bothered me so much going into the debate (and afterwards) was that Palin was being held to a far lower standard than Biden. The media (all sides) were not expecting much from her and they kept saying all she had to do in the debate was reclaim her image. Meanwhile Biden was held to real world "hey this is a debate for the potential VP of the United States" standards.
    Right after the debate on CNN last night, both parties' pundits talked about Palin in terms of how she redeemed herself. But redeemed herself in terms of what? I personally do not feel she redeemed herself at all. We all know she is a good speaker especially when locked up all week with republican advisors grilling her on issues and giving her facts to recite. (I know the democrats probably did that too but again for me personally, Biden didn't sound like a robot spitting out facts last night.)
    I think I maybe heard two actual examples out of Gov. Palin's mouth the entire debate to back up what she was claiming. She claimed that McCain knows how to win wars. I have total respect for our military (I do think that it is necessary for countries to have militaries) and I am grateful to him for serving our country and facing the horrors he did in order to protect his country. But he was in a war that we lost. America LOST that war. So, I do not understand how she can truthfully make the claim that he knows how to win wars. I mean he may very well know how to but we have no proof of that.
    Obama may know how to win wars and we have no proof of that either but he and Senator Biden are not claiming that they know how to win wars.
    Sorry, long post. What I got from the debate was that Palin can memorize facts, mispronounce NUCLEAR (I refuse to put any more people in office who cannot pronounce a simple word like nuclear), speak in terms that the middle class can understand, and do what she has been doing since she was nominated for VP which is bringing all questions back to energy and hockey moms and never giving examples (examples that are true).
    I do have strong feelings about Palin as a politician (not a mother). She only confirmed to me last night that she would make a mockery of the VP position and that she is way out of her league right now. I do not think that she could effectively be President if Godforbid something happened to McCain. And though that is not only what we are voting for when we vote for a specific ticket, it is something very important to consider.

  10. ps. She should have acknowledged the moment somehow because she had just been talking about her own family to which Biden responded and then made his own comments about his family. She had already established by that point in the debate that she wanted to be less formal (she gave a shout out at one point and said that it was a shout out). Therefore, being less formal, she could have said something or acknowledged the very serious moment somehow. Hell she probably could have promoted herself in the process by saying something about BOTH of their sons. That would have been the most selfish response but it would have had some seriousness and compassion to it. I agree she missed the boat on that one.

  11. And, as heroic as his service was, the reason he was shot down was because he acted impulsively. He should have taken evasive action while flying a mission but chose not to. (See Newsweek.) He was known as being reckless during his military service, and his decisionmaking is no better as a civilian. He acts rashly, without thought to consequences, and without having all the facts at his disposal.

    That he's brave is not in question - but bravery without wisdom is just bravado.

  12. mccain should have taken evasive action perhaps. would've, could've, should've. NO ONE knows what they'd do in that moment, christine. it happened and he did what he did.

  13. i think jeff is right: in that situation, no one knows exactly what they might do. i can't begin to imagine.

    but i also think christine's fundemental point (love that word now) is that mccain has a history of making rash, reckless decisions without having all the facts, i.e. let's put sarah palin a heartbeat away from the nuclear codes.

    or should i say "nuculer" codes?

    i think a person's history of decision-making in "crisis" situations is worth examining. especially when they are not going to be responsible for only themselves, but for the entire country.

  14. Hey Tony!

    I was shocked that Palin did not acknowledge what Biden said about his family. However, as I sat in shock, I then felt it was a lose, lose situation for her. Lose if you don't, lose if you do. I also did not like the way the debate was monitored. It almost seemed that there were times that Ms. Gwen didn't give them a chance for rebuttal, and the shifts seemed very uncomfortable for both of them-although Biden handled it better. I guess that is the stage manager in me! I did like the fact that both candidates interacted with their families-something that the bosses did not do.


  15. yeah, i'm loving that word so much i'm learning how to spell it!


    (welcome martha.)

  16. Thanks, Tony, that is my point. He has a history of making rash decisions before he was shot down and afterwards. I was reluctant to even use that example but I think it's indicative of his decision-making process.

    I think being shot down was the first time he had to face serious consequences of his actions. If he's elected, WE may have to face the consequences. Especially if Caribou Barbie winds up making the decisions in his place.


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