Friday, October 01, 2004

Weelllllll . . . Thanks to the miracle of Dutch television, I was able to watch the debate just now (they were live at 3am, but I watched a replay at a more civilized hour: it's 10:47am now).

Before I answer your question, Jim, about how I thought Kerry did, let me first say this: several people have said recently that one shouldn't underestimate Dubyah, as he is a "good debater". Having seen him debate a few times now, I've come to believe that Dubyah is a good debater in the same sense that Doctor Phil is a good psychologist. In other words, he ain't. What he IS is a successful debater, insofar as he became governor of Texas and president of the US after having participated in debates. He really isn't any good at all when it comes to the parry and thrust of argument, however. A good debater, whatever the format, is someone who can argue a proposition in such a way as to convince a skeptic or someone who is undecided. Dubyah has demonstrated repeatedly that he is utterly incapable of convincing anyone of anything unless they are already disposed to agree with him or are STUPID.

Sadly, that may be enough. It don't make for "good", though.

Kerry, on the other hand, performed quite well in my opinion. One reason I am comfortable in saying that is that I went into it expecting him to fuck up (in other words, I was a skeptic). He was concise and clear, however. I thought he landed several really good punches, in fact, and did a great job of controlling the stage. Dubyah, by contrast, seemed to struggle on several occaisions, as evidenced by his inability to answer several questions and his CONSTANT blinking. I've never seen him blink like that before.

By the way, in the past several days I've seen Dubyah in this debate and when he was holding his press conference with YeeGad! Alawi and have noticed one thing come up over and over again:

It's hard work in Iraq. Everyone knows that!
What's going on in Iraq is hard work. The American people know that.
Lots of people are working hard in Iraq. I know that, and so do the American people . . . and so on.

I think this line appeals to Dubyah because he's never worked hard at anything in his fucking life, and therefore is genuinely astonished that things aren't going his way. Some Rover probably thinks that the great unwashed will hear it at think "yeah! Hard work! I work hard, TOO! I'm gonna vote for Dubyah!" and they may be right.


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