Friday, February 1, 2008

Last Night's Democratic Debate

Loved the tone. The grown-ups came back. Loved the attacks on Republicans instead of each other, for a change. A favorite moment: Hillary was talking about why she voted for invasion authority. When she was done, that idiot Wolf Blitzer said, "So I'm hearing you say you were naive about the president?" And the crowd booed him. Really let him have it. FINALLY. Are you sick of the constant belittling of Hillary? It's time to tell the media puppets to shut their moufs. They aren't, as they say in consulting, "adding value."

Hillary came off as by far the better informed. Time and again she delivered a depth of discussion that impressed me and that cast Obama in a less than flattering light. It wasn't helped the few times the camera caught him looking skyward, vague, bored perhaps. He didn't look engaged and on top of the subject. That's my point.

I love Clinton's uncompromising insistance that universal health coverage is a core Democratic value. Paying for health care is the number-one cause of bankruptcy in the US. It's not in our own families' interests to let ancient Republican chatter about "socialized medicine" scare us away. I prefer Clinton's approach to health care, and I am totally fine with eliminating Bush's tax cuts on the wealthy. Let them pay their fair share of the cost of living in the USA. It ain't like it's free.

Obama is a terrific speaker. He's definitely in Bill's league in his ability to speak easily in public and establish real rapport with the people. He has a delightful personality, and I have a great deal of confidence in his wisdom, which is the essential characteristic of a good president. (W illustrated this by demontrating its utter absense.) I need to hear more specific programs from Obama--and Clinton, too--on the environment, the economy, immigration, "free" trade, the "free" market and corporate regulation, the housing crisis, reigning in fraud and corruption in the defense industry and at the Pentagon, and domestic security issues like the so-called "Patriot Act."

It's a tough call. I'm pissed that MoveOn has endorsed Obama so soon because I'm not ready to choose yet and I think I've got a lot of company. Substantive discussions like last night's, only less hurried, would be a huge help.

And so a lot less static from Wolf, Joe, Chris, Bill, Candy, Andrea, and the rest of the tired old, same-old, same-old dreary political commentators. Is there a place where these people can retire, out of sight and out of mind?