I can't believe the Democrats agreed to this format, with the
candidates sitting around Charlie Rose style. This clearly worked to
Cheney's advantage. I kept imagining what it would be like if they
were both standing up, and that's when I realized that Cheney can't
keep his hands still for a moment, which is fine at a table but weird
at a podium; and that he can't look at the camera or look up for more
than a second or two at a time (except in his closing, which was of
course rehearsed), which while seated looks thoughtful and
intelligent, but while standing at a podium looks shy and dishonest.
My impressions. Cheney came off sounding intelligent and well-versed
on all the relevant facts. Edwards came off like a shyster.
In fact, Cheney's competence is frightening, because he's only the
Vice President. He's not supposed to be running the show. Clearly he
is. The responses to the various objections were at his fingertips in
a way they could only be for someone who actually wrote the policies,
as contrasted with all the other candidates who are memorizing the
issues around the policies after-the-fact.
And.. did Cheney show a moment of integrity by basically not discussing
the gay marriage issue? It seemed to me like he basically said, here's
our administration's policy, I don't agree with it, but I'm not the
president. Whereas Edwards clearly said, "We believe marriage is
between a man and a woman." Ack.
Cheney worked the flip-flop and made both Edwards's and Kerry's
records look miserable. Not showing up, that's not good. Explain it or
dispute it, but don't just ignore it.
The Democrats, and particularly Edwards, sound ridiculous to me
because they don't have a platform. Their platform is a gobbledygook
mess of whatever they think is wrong with the other side. It doesn't
have any coherence. The GOP is doing an awfully good job of making it
sound like everything Kerry and Edwards criticize now, they voted for
before. And it's because there is some truth to this.
I was left as a (more-or-less) pacifist after this debate wanting to
vote for Cheney. Why? Because the Democrats are now advocating
increasing the size of the military and lavishing more money on
it. They are advocating toughening sanctions on Iran and criticizing
the administration for not being Tough Enough. Cheney is advocating
training an Iraqi military, not sending more American troops, and
Where is the party advocating fewer troops, and integration rather
than isolation as a means of resolving disputes? Seems to be that at
one point in time, the Dems were headed that way. Now I have no
fucking clue where they are.