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MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 07:27 PM
Okay, so who do you think won and why?

Proceed...

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 07:34 PM
I think corplinx won with his drinking game, btw ;)

Jontg
7th October 2008, 07:40 PM
Well, the last question was pretty disappointing--or more accurately, neither candidate's answering it. On the bright side, McCain made a fool of himself in the process--rather than using issues to dodge like Obama did, he just fell back on the war hero line.

joobz
7th October 2008, 07:40 PM
I think it was in McCain's favor.
He had better control of himself and the debate.

corplinx
7th October 2008, 07:46 PM
My name is T. Boone Pickens. And I am ticked off that nobody mentioned fricken compressed natural gas. I mean what the heck man, I've bought like billions in ads so far.

Puppycow
7th October 2008, 07:47 PM
Well, I'm at work now so I haven't been able to see it yet, but judging from the live blog at the NY times, Obama won.

Tough Talk | 10:25 p.m. Here, Mr. Obama has a star turn — on foreign policy, Mr. McCain’s supposed turf. Mr. Obama is more forceful than usual, and makes the hunt for Osama bin Laden his singular focus.

“We will kill bin Laden, we will crush al Qaeda,” he declares. “That has to be our biggest national priority.”

By contrast, Mr. McCain seems a bit rambling. He quotes his favorite president, Teddy Roosevelt, as preferring to walk softly but carry a big stick and says that Mr. Obama “likes to talk loudly,” by announcing, for example, “that he wants to attack Pakistan.”

Mr. Obama talks Mr. Brokaw into allowing him to respond. Mr. Brokaw shrugs, “I’m just the hired help here.”

Mr. Obama says that nobody is talking about invading Pakistan. If Pakistan is unable or unwilling to hunt down bin laden, we should do it, he says.

See, that's what I want deep down. Bin Laden's head on a spear. (metaphorically speaking)
It reassures those of us who were worried that Obama might be too much of a peacenik.

No Dustups | 10:15 p.m. More than an hour into the debate, no big gaffes, no knock-out punches. Both candidates have made digs at each other, but nothing we haven’t heard before and nothing that qualifies as “taking the gloves off.”

Mr. McCain is more aggressively courting the audience and the ref. Both candidates, who’ve been ignoring the time limits, demand follow-ups.

Meadmaker
7th October 2008, 07:48 PM
I only watched the first 40 minutes, and I don't think there was a clear "winner" during that period.

Probably, I think Obama won, at 4:00 Eastern time, at the closing bell of the New York Stock Exchange. So many of the questions were of the form, "With the economy down the tubes, what would you do?" McCain could spin all he wanted, but that's a rough way to start the evening.

Alferd_Packer
7th October 2008, 07:48 PM
If I had a shot of Wild Turkey every time McCain mentioned General Prateous, I'd be on the floor right now.

Oliver
7th October 2008, 07:49 PM
Well, to answer the OP's question ... The President won. :p

ARubberChickenWithAPulley
7th October 2008, 07:49 PM
Slightly in favor of McCain, but not enough to matter.

I thought McCain looked and sounded much better than the last debate, and definitely seemed more comfortable with the format than Obama. I also thought he worked his talking points in a lot more naturally here than last time.

Given their positions in the polls, though, I think Obama did well enough. In the end, it was a good debate, but a forgettable one.

EeneyMinnieMoe
7th October 2008, 07:52 PM
Draw. No one got knocked out and at this point, I don't think anyone gained any converts to their side.

I've voting for Obama but if I had to weigh the candidate's debating skills and performance, they are pretty much even.

Then again, Bush and Kerry were pretty much even in the debates. So that tells you something about winning a debate.

corplinx
7th October 2008, 07:55 PM
Overall I think the candidates fell back on my Drinking Game talking points. McCain started out off of them but picked it up later in the game with unconditional talks drinks.

The candidates went out of their way to portray themselves as clones yet again.

Now they are both for:
nuclear power
cowboy diplomacy
attacking iran

The differences seem to be:
Healthcare, neither of which I think congress will pass as-is
Invading Darfur

Curiously, Obama seems to be trying to position himself as the real hawk of the two, unafraid to unapologetically launch operations into Pakistan or to go into Darfur.

Beam me up Mr. Speaker.

Oliver
7th October 2008, 07:59 PM
They're pretty much even??? Everyone heard what McWho? said about Obama
"invading" Pakistan. In that moment during the Debate, McWho? kicked himself
in front of millions of people.

Also, "Bomb bomb bomb" Iran was a major blowback for the guys point with
the "big stick". [And I'm not sure if that was a sexual reference]

Wangler
7th October 2008, 07:59 PM
I agree with a TV commentator that the questions covered too narrow a range of subjects, and both candidates basically just repeated their stump speech boilerplate.

A pretty boring debate, with both candidates awash in mediocrity.

I don't know who won, but the American voter wanting to know if there was anything more about the two major party candidates besides soundbites was certainly the loser.

aerosolben
7th October 2008, 07:59 PM
Surprised the mood here is in McCain's favor. He showed improvements, but my reading of CNN's on-screen indicators leads me to think Obama came out better.

One big thing I noticed is the approval drops whenever McCain criticized Obama directly - this does not bode well for his end game campaign strategy.

chipmunk stew
7th October 2008, 08:07 PM
This will put Obama's RCP average at or above 50% by Friday.

McCain delivered no good punches.

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 08:07 PM
I think that they came out basically even in this debate. It was apparent that McCain was more comfortable with this format.

That being said, "even" is a big loss for McCain; Obama basically showed, again, that he can be presidential and hang with the big dogs. With McCain so far behind in the polls, what he needed tonight to make any real difference in slowing Obama's momentum was to have a major game-changer.

He didn't have that.

No game-changer at this stage = McCain is finished.***

At least, that's my read of things. And the Republican strategist on ABC News agreed that McCain did nothing tonight to blunt Obama's surge in the polls, so he's in trouble - big trouble.

***Caveat: I do think McCain is done, but that's no reason for the Democrats to get overconfident and lazy. Obama's campaign is smart, and they're going all-out from here until Election Day. They want to ensure that it's not just "squeaking out a win", they want a major win with an obvious margin of victory.

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 08:10 PM
They're pretty much even??? Everyone heard what McWho? said about Obama
"invading" Pakistan. In that moment during the Debate, McWho? kicked himself
in front of millions of people.

Also, "Bomb bomb bomb" Iran was a major blowback for the guys point with
the "big stick". [And I'm not sure if that was a sexual reference]


As an Obama supporter, I agree with you that McCain screwed up on these points, especially how he ham-fistedly addressed the "bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" question. His answer was just stupid.

However, my previous analysis was my attempt to look at the debate as objectively as possible without my partisan lenses.

David Wong
7th October 2008, 08:12 PM
CNN's insta-poll - who won?

Obama: 54

McCain: 30

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 08:17 PM
Meh. I don't put much stock in these insta-polls (got a link on that CNN poll, btw?). I'll wait until more detailed analyses come out. I'm guessing this debate, like the last two, won't really have much effect at all in the prediction markets.

Tricky
7th October 2008, 08:18 PM
They were both terrible. At least a dozen times I wanted to shout to both of them, "Answer the damn question!"

About their talking points (which had nothing to do with the questions), Obama had a slight advantage.

As I predicted, neither one of them reprised their attack ads.

McCain looked old. Real old. Obama looked resolute and fit. Shallow observation, yes, but we know how deep the American electorate is.

JoeTheJuggler
7th October 2008, 08:18 PM
Why does McCain still insist on characterizing Obama's answer to crossing into Pakistan to pursue OBL or Al Qaeda as "invading" or "attacking" Pakistan? And why does he say it is telling the enemy what you plan to do? (Oh yeah--when he answers the same question, doesn't he do the same thing?)

It seems nonsensical.

The only valid point is not a question of a difference of policy (that is, the information the questioner wanted) but his criticism about responsible speech. If that's true, Obama's calling attention to McCain wanting to extinct North Korea and singing "Bomb bomb Iran" definitely wins that debate.

Otherwise. . . someone should coach Obama not to say "and" so much (like as filler while forming his next sentence). Once I started hearing it, it was very distracting.

JoeTheJuggler
7th October 2008, 08:21 PM
Oh yeah--I mentioned this elsewhere: I really miss the way Bill Clinton would answer a yes/no question. He'd say, "Yes [or no] and let me tell you why" in one breath.

No one could take the question and answer out of context without it being obvious that they were doing so, yet it had the satisfaction of feeling like the guy could actually give a straight answer.

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 08:22 PM
They were both terrible. At least a dozen times I wanted to shout to both of them, "Answer the damn question!"


I also noticed this. I think it's one reason why modern debates don't really affect things all that much - the politicians have figured out how to work the system, so to speak.

The only way that I can really see a debate making a big difference is with major gaffes or stupendous put-downs (Reagan's "There you go again!" comes to mind)

About their talking points (which had nothing to do with the questions), Obama had a slight advantage.


Agreed. But then I'm a fan of his talking points. :D

As I predicted, neither one of them reprised their attack ads.


A smart move by both men. The fact that McCain "didn't go there" tonight shows me that perhaps he's a bit concerned about his recent ultra-negative turn. I think he's worried that it could be backfiring on him.

McCain looked old. Real old. Obama looked resolute and fit. Shallow observation, yes, but we know how deep the American electorate is.


McCain always looks old standing next to Obama. He's nearly 30 years Obama's senior!

corplinx
7th October 2008, 08:27 PM
I think the problem is, Obama is for all the things McCain for. McCain doesn't have an issue to hammer him with right now. Drilling? Fine. Nuclear? Fine. Kick foreign countries' butts? Fine.

The candidates used the phrase "fundamental differences" the entire debate and showed very few.

If you have your choice between basically similar candidates, you will pick the one less attached to Bush is my guess. Obama is basically trying to lock up the independent vote through these debates.

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 08:28 PM
I am an Obama supporter, I can't get over my own bias 100% and I freely admit that. I think Obama was better but again, I am biased.

The funny thing is I DO think McCain was better this time BUT McCain sees these the town hall debate formats as his bread and butter but I think it completely hurts him. I feel he would have been much better at the other debate if he wasn't so condescending. I think the only reason he was better this time is because he wasn't displaying complete contempt for Obama. It didn't have anything to do with the style of the debate.

I know, he is an older guy and he lived through a lot in Vietnam and that effects his mobility. That said, he looks stuff (because he is) and I think that effects his "likability" while he is up and walking around.

My girlfriend / parter said that when he says "my friends" with his body language it almost seems like an attack, almost too forceful. I think this is a really bad format for McCain.

Darth Rotor
7th October 2008, 08:28 PM
with both candidates awash in mediocrity.

I don't know who won, but the American voter wanting to know if there was anything more about the two major party candidates besides soundbites was certainly the loser.
Which is why I went to play golf, and get hammered afterwards, rather than watch that tripe.

Life -- it isn't for watching horsecrap dry under the heat of TV cameras and stage lights.

DR

R.Mackey
7th October 2008, 08:31 PM
I'd go as far as to call this debate "boring."

No new positions, possibly excepting McCain hocking a buy-out of bad mortgages. (From a Republican? Huh?) No scintillating new insights. Not even any sharp attacks. Just more of the same, and a slow slide into negativity.

Therefore, Obama won. McCain has to change the momentum of this contest. I don't think he even tried. Does he have something up his sleeve, or has he given up?

Darth Rotor
7th October 2008, 08:31 PM
:p McCain looked old. Real old. Obama looked resolute and fit. Shallow observation, yes, but we know how deep the American electorate is.
Nice bit of age discrimination there, old man. :p

Try the Profiles in Courage test on both candidates.

Which one has a record of voting against his, or not with his, party?

Think about it.

Of course, none of that explains the hot librarian appeal from the Frozen Tundra, other than standard Britney infested America pop media. Then again, who the hell do you think is putting on this show?

The American media. It's done for their ratings, not for you, dear fellow voter. They are trying to entertain you and sell soap. Looks like a few more data points proving PT Barnum right.

JoeTheJuggler
7th October 2008, 08:33 PM
I also noticed this. I think it's one reason why modern debates don't really affect things all that much - the politicians have figured out how to work the system, so to speak.

The only way that I can really see a debate making a big difference is with major gaffes or stupendous put-downs (Reagan's "There you go again!" comes to mind)


Well, the two parties are "the system" so it's no surprise that it works to protect the candidates from those nasty voters actually getting their questions answered.

It's like they're both (all--counting the VPs) trying so hard to be everything to everyone that they're afraid of actually answering questions that might make them something to someone!

Puppycow
7th October 2008, 08:35 PM
Halperin's grades (http://thepage.time.com/2008/10/07/game-on-20/)

McCain spent much of the evening trying to define Obama on his terms, but never broke all the way through.

First 30 minutes focused on the economic crisis. Other issues included foreign policy, health care, energy and more.

Mark Halperin’s grades:

Obama: B+
McCain: B

Darth Rotor
7th October 2008, 08:36 PM
Therefore, Obama won. McCain has to change the momentum of this contest. I don't think he even tried. Does he have something up his sleeve, or has he given up?
Since the GOP has already thrown him under the bus, why should he care? I say he bangs Eskimo Nell, to attract the middle of the road democrat vote, pulling the WJ Clinton empathy for a hardon card.

Hell, it might work. It has more dignity than playing the race card, the age card, the experience card, the hope card, the POW card, or the supermom card.

Is this a great country, or what?

*stuff in ear plugs to mute the thunderous reply of "what" from the usual suspects . . . *

Tricky
7th October 2008, 08:36 PM
One thing that annoys me about so many of the debates and also the campaigns is the point about bringing up the voting record without context. When you say "so and so voted against lunches for poor kids" then you ignore the fact that congressional bills don't vote for a single thing like school lunches. They cover many, maybe over a hundred things. The fact that some altruistic points are eliminated if a big budget buster bill is defeated is not relevant. Because both candidates were Senators, they both have the same kind of ammunition and in both cases they are shooting blanks while simultaneously being targets.

The fact is, most Americans don't understand how Congress works, so they buy the sound bytes about how so-and-so voted against such-and-such. The overall picture is hard for them to grasp, as well as the fact that it is a movie, not a snapshot.

Debates like this make me more cynical than anything. I probably shouldn't watch them.

Darth Rotor
7th October 2008, 08:38 PM
Debates like this make me more cynical than anything. I probably shouldn't watch them.
Fifty seven channels, and nothing on. That is why we have The Golf Channel: for when you want the TV on but don't really want to watch anything. Don't give the bastards the satisfaction by watching that rubbish they call "debates" during an election year.

DR

HereticHulk
7th October 2008, 08:39 PM
Ron Paul won. Hands down.

noch1Narr
7th October 2008, 08:40 PM
Obama came across as relaxed and poised, whereas McCain came across as angry,spiteful and downright nasty: "that one!" that shabby reference to Obama WILL get plenty of play on the next SNL! Also McCain referring to "Obama & his cronies"-- if THAT is not the pot calling the kettle black, I don't know what would be a better example.
I think the mentally-arthitic candidate looked & sounded less than presidential tonight, and Brokaw should have shouted at both of them when they went over their alloted time limit, especially McCain talking for over 2 minutes during one of his 1 minute time limit "rebuttals"....It weren't no draw, no Sirree!

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 08:40 PM
Since the GOP has already thrown him under the bus, why should he care? I say he bangs Eskimo Nell, to attract the middle of the road democrat vote, pulling the WJ Clinton empathy for a hardon card.



http://forums.randi.org/imagehosting/774747dc5f01571c1.gif (http://forums.randi.org/vbimghost.php?do=displayimg&imgid=11269)

Dymanic
7th October 2008, 08:41 PM
I am an Obama supporter, I can't get over my own bias 100% and I freely admit that.
I also find that I simply cannot be objective here. That anyone could listen to what those two men said tonight and conclude that McCain had "won" in any sense of the word -- or that it was even close -- is completely incomprehensible to me. I suppose if he had been more successful in his usual attempts to misrepresent Obama's position I might have conceded that he had "won", but he doesn't do so well at that when Obama is there to straighten things out. I am also very reluctant to allow that anyone else could be any more objective about this than I can, unless that person was previously undecided on his or her choice of candidate. That anyone could still remain undecided at this point is something I find just as incomprehensible.

Tricky
7th October 2008, 08:41 PM
Fifty seven channels, and nothing on. That is why we have The Golf Channel: for when you want the TV on but don't really want to watch anything. Don't give the bastards the satisfaction by watching that rubbish they call "debates" during an election year.

DR

I had no choice. I couldn't let Ms. Tricky think I was shallow.

Cain
7th October 2008, 08:41 PM
I watched the first 15 minutes before I couldn't stand that **** any longer. Neither one of them answered the questions. In keeping with that style.

Our elections are ********** up.
Gerrymandering -- packing, stacking and cracking -- has resulted in many non-competitive seats for the House. Politicians choosing voters rather than voters choosing their legislators.
The Electoral College is an undemocratic institution.
The Senate is an even more undemocratic institution.
The Presidential election starts too damn early and goes on for too damn long.
The way campaigns are financed is ********.
We have a B.S. two party system.
The "special commission" and these debates are a joke.

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 08:50 PM
It's funny but I am just not as negative about these things.

YES they do a some dodging on issues but they did a whole lot better answering questions than people here are giving them credit for.

I think they dodged that last question completely but that was a tricky one. But I will stand by what I said above, they did actually answer questions. The talked about the economy when a question was asked about the economy, they talked about foreign policy when questions were asked about foreign policy... they only have a limited time to answer, what do we expect them to say?

Anyway, I guess I am the odd one out here but they did answer questions in a way that helped me understand their stance on issues.

rdaneel
7th October 2008, 08:59 PM
I suppose if he had been more successful in his usual attempts to misrepresent Obama's position I might have conceded that he had "won", but he doesn't do so well at that when Obama is there to straighten things out.
My purely biased opinion is that it looked good for Obama to aggressively refute McCains claims, even going so far as to force a follow-up he wasn't supposed to have. I liked the "I'm not going to take that lying down" attitude.
I missed the first half hour though, so I don't know if McCain had any moments like that.

Puppycow
7th October 2008, 09:01 PM
Our elections are ********** up.
Gerrymandering -- packing, stacking and cracking -- has resulted in many non-competitive seats for the House. Politicians choosing voters rather than voters choosing their legislators.I totally agree about the gerrymandering. I was surprised when that came up in California but didn't pass. There oughta be a law against it.

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 09:02 PM
Gerrymandering sucks. It's a real problem that should be dealt with... but sadly I don't think it ever will be.

DavidJames
7th October 2008, 09:04 PM
To me the big loser here was Brokaw. The format of the 1 minute follow up was a joke. He either should have abandon it completely or stopped them mid sentence to keep to the rules.

My wife and and both looked at each other when McCain twice said Obama would attack Pakistan. Clearly, that was a talking point he had and was going to make it regardless if just 30 seconds earlier Obama clearly stated something different. Then for him to say it again....

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 09:07 PM
Obama came across as relaxed and poised, whereas McCain came across as angry,spiteful and downright nasty: "that one!" that shabby reference to Obama WILL get plenty of play on the next SNL!


You nailed it. But Obama's campaign is beating SNL to the punch on this one...

Obama campaign highlights 'that one' (http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/10/07/obama-campaign-highlights-that-one/)

Damn these guys move fast! I wonder how this will play in the press over the next couple of days? We'll see.

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 09:11 PM
Well, first polling numbers I have hear is this from CBS News (400 uncommitted / independent voters)

39% Obama
35% Draw
27% McCain

About where we were after the first debate.

David Wong
7th October 2008, 09:12 PM
Well, first polling numbers I have hear is this from CBS News (400 uncommitted / independent voters)

39% Obama
35% draw
27% McCain

About where we were after the first debate.

We've got CNN's poll earlier in the thread. Obama by 24.

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 09:12 PM
Linky?

That is, for both polls (CBS & CNN)

BenBurch
7th October 2008, 09:14 PM
Neither won, therefore Obama did because McCain HAD to win decidedly to have even a ghost of a chance.

Obama is moving into landslide territory (375 or better) in electoral votes now.

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 09:14 PM
We've got CNN's poll earlier in the thread. Obama by 24.

I didn't see that, is it on this thread? I must have missed it.

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 09:16 PM
Neither won, therefore Obama did because McCain HAD to win decidedly to have even a ghost of a chance.

I agree....

Obama is moving into landslide territory (375 or better) in electoral votes now.

I don't agree... but I would be happy to be wrong.

BenBurch
7th October 2008, 09:16 PM
Gerrymandering sucks. It's a real problem that should be dealt with... but sadly I don't think it ever will be.

Well, the original goes back to 1812, so I think "never" is a good estimate of when we will deal with it;

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 09:17 PM
Obama is moving into landslide territory (375 or better) in electoral votes now.


Again, linky? Please share the joy, folks. :D

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 09:17 PM
Linky?

That is, for both polls (CBS & CNN)

Sorry, I watched it on Old Media (i.e. TV). ;)

I am sure it's on their respective sites.

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 09:18 PM
I'm too drunk to surf now, dammit ;)

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 09:20 PM
I'm too drunk to surf now, dammit ;)

Too many hits on the debate drinking game from the "My Friends" comments?

:D

BenBurch
7th October 2008, 09:20 PM
Again, linky? Please share the joy, folks. :D

My prediction based on this; http://election.princeton.edu/ (Showing presently 353-185) with additions for Obama's unchecked momentum.

aerosolben
7th October 2008, 09:23 PM
Again, linky? Please share the joy, folks. :D
Obama just needs to pick up Indiana to reach 375 - not a stretch.

Considering even conservative (http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives2/2008/10/021717.php) bloggers (http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=YWUxN2E3YWE3ZmQ4YWU4MGE3NGNhMWNkNTRiODc2ODE=) seem to be throwing in the towel (http://blog.beliefnet.com/crunchycon/2008/10/obama_vs_mccain_clinton_vs_dol_comments.html), turnout differences could easily push him over the top.

a_unique_person
7th October 2008, 09:24 PM
The Headline I'm reading is "McCain to buy out every bad home loan".

http://www.theage.com.au/world/us-election-2008/six-million-questions-obama-and-mccain-square-off-20081008-4wca.html

MattusMaximus
7th October 2008, 09:29 PM
Too many hits on the debate drinking game from the "My Friends" comments?

:D


Yup... prez debates, media ************ & hype, B&B, and cookies.

Good for gettiin' my drunk on :D

R.Mackey
7th October 2008, 09:31 PM
The Headline I'm reading is "McCain to buy out every bad home loan".

http://www.theage.com.au/world/us-election-2008/six-million-questions-obama-and-mccain-square-off-20081008-4wca.html

Well, McCain couldn't even remember how many houses he owns. Obviously he's looking for more...

I kid! I kid!

corplinx
7th October 2008, 09:32 PM
Who won? Not honesty.

Fox Link to AP Story:
http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/10/07/fact-check/

a_unique_person
7th October 2008, 09:37 PM
Well, McCain couldn't even remember how many houses he owns. Obviously he's looking for more...

I kid! I kid!

He's going to buy them out, at their current market value, that is, less than what was paid for many of them.

not_so_new
7th October 2008, 09:40 PM
Who won? Not honesty.

Fox Link to AP Story:
http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/10/07/fact-check/

Imagine that... fact checking from Fox News.

;)

Just kidding corplinx, just kidding.

Puppycow
7th October 2008, 09:52 PM
Mickey Kaus' take (http://www.slate.com/id/2201614/#deadroom)

McCain/Obama Debate #2: Before I get spun: A dull debate in a dead room. Each stole the other's theme: Obama called for service to country, McCain for a "cool hand on the tiller" even as he seemed like a hyperactive hand himself. A tie helps Obama, and this probably wasn't even a tie. ... 1) Obama's great weakness is that he's an unknown with an unusual (i.e. strange) background. By painting him as a big-spending liberal, McCain oddly made Obama seem less strange, and more acceptable. Voters are used to dealing with big spending liberals--and they also may think that the there's not enough money for that much big spending anymore anyway. 2) Speaking of spending, McCain rails against Obama's "$860 billion" in proposed "new" spending, yet McCain wants the government to buy up all the bad mortgages in the country, give all homeowners new purchase prices and protect them from their ill-advised decisions? Sounds expensive. Update: I was just on Tavis Smiley's TV show with Rep. Maxine Waters, who said the money to do what McCain wants to do is already in the bailout bill. But it sure sounded to me like McCain was proposing a big new initiative; 3) "That one." Heh. Not racist--seemed to me like an attempt by McCain to avoid being too confrontational (by saying Obama's name) that wound up seeming more hostile than saying Obama's name would have been. 4) Obama still refers to economically pressured Americans as "you" rather than "we;" 5) McCain was badly hurt by the camera angle--shooting him from above only made him look short and scuttling.

Puppycow
7th October 2008, 09:57 PM
CBS Poll (http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/07/politics/horserace/entry4508356.shtml?tag=centerColumn;centerColumnCo ntent)
CNN Poll (http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/10/07/cnn-poll-obama-won-the-night/)

ZenFountain
7th October 2008, 10:12 PM
I only saw two new major developments from the debate.

1. McCain is going to start hitting Obama and Democrats hard on their involvement with the irresponsible lending practices at Fannie and Freddie and emphasize his involvement in trying to stop it, however small or nonexistent it was. At least he's back to the issues here rather than insinuating that Obama is in bed with domestic terrorist.

2. McCain suggested that the government, presumably in bankruptcy courts (?), should be able to adjust the principle on mortgages to rescue homeowners from negative equity. Democrats had already wanted this but it's incredibly blatant voter pandering, here's a graphic I found just today.

http://i38.tinypic.com/fu2r7s.png

Noticing a theme in the urban areas of Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Colorado and the now abandoned Michigan? Keeping people in their homes if they can afford a new mortgage on the new principle is probably better than the current foreclosure free fall, but how is this going to play with conservatives who ostensibly don't want to rescue folks from their own bad decisions? McCain will be testing the limits of how liberal he can go on this issue without angering the base.

quixotecoyote
7th October 2008, 10:15 PM
When the going gets tough, the tough get liberal :)

JoeTheJuggler
7th October 2008, 10:22 PM
Oh yeah--I almost forgot: McCain kept calling the Adler Planetarium theater machine "an overhead projector".

He made something like this: http://www.zeiss.com/C125679B0029303C/EmbedTitelIntern/PI_124_07_1/$File/PI_124_07_1.jpg

sound like something like this: http://joethejuggler.com/overhead.jpg

ZenFountain
7th October 2008, 10:23 PM
When the going gets tough, the tough get liberal :)

Apparently so. I suppose telling voters "Sorry for being stupid, but without consequences we as a nation won't learn from this mess. Oh, and enjoy renting!" is no way to win an election now is it?

:rolleyes:

quixotecoyote
7th October 2008, 10:36 PM
Apparently so. I suppose telling voters "Sorry for being stupid, but without consequences we as a nation won't learn from this mess. Oh, and enjoy renting!" is no way to win an election now is it?

:rolleyes:

You're right. Given that the real issue is less the stupidity of home buyers and more the issues of turning those mortages into mis-rated securities, that would be a really stupid thing to say.

BenBurch
7th October 2008, 10:36 PM
BTW, I was trained to run the previous planetarium projector at Adler. It was an impressive machine. MUCH nicer than the one the local school district has which I also was qualified to run. Those machines are not cheap. And they are a vital educational resource not just for the schools but for the public at large.

BenBurch
7th October 2008, 10:39 PM
ZenFountain... Wow, that map. I am SO glad I am in the same place I bought in 1983. Yeah it lost paper value but its still worth twice what I paid for it and much, much more than I still owe.

ZenFountain
7th October 2008, 10:56 PM
You're right. Given that the real issue is less the stupidity of home buyers and more the issues of turning those mortages into mis-rated securities, that would be a really stupid thing to say.

Let's not sidetrack another thread into a culpability argument.

My point was the traditional conservative in this situation would say if you bought a house in a market that was clearly overheated and took out a loan you couldn't afford, that's your own problem. Having bankruptcy counts readjust principal to account for the bursted housing bubble is new territory. And who even knows if this is the bottom? Might be renegotiating mortgages on the top of another downward spiral in some of the worst hit areas. The problem of negative equity is not related to how that mortgage debt was securitized and put on the market, other than that was how banks were able to make so many sub-prime loans that fueled the price bubbles in the first place.

Obviously, McCain is not going to win this election telling people they are on their own and good luck though.

Whiplash
7th October 2008, 11:07 PM
Obama is moving into "landslide" territory eh? I sincerely hope that all the Democrats adopt such a ridiculous stance based on nothing but hubris, it may just turn this thing around in the long run.

Don't kid yourself Ben. I admit that Obama is winning. But 375 electoral votes? That's just laugh out loud kool-aid drinking nonsense. You are giving him states that are currently still very, very very close.

aerosolben
7th October 2008, 11:27 PM
Oh yeah--I almost forgot: McCain kept calling the Adler Planetarium theater machine "an overhead projector".
Yes, he's been harping on that one - our beloved JREF president is not happy about it (http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2008/09/15/john-mccain-literally-antiscience/).

aerosolben
7th October 2008, 11:33 PM
Obama is moving into "landslide" territory eh? I sincerely hope that all the Democrats adopt such a ridiculous stance based on nothing but hubris, it may just turn this thing around in the long run.

Don't kid yourself Ben. I admit that Obama is winning. But 375 electoral votes? That's just laugh out loud kool-aid drinking nonsense. You are giving him states that are currently still very, very very close.
Hubris can be dangerous, and Ben seems to have developed a penchant for "optimistic" predictions this election cycle, but fivethirtyeight.com currently pegs this scenario at 1 in 3. In fact, if all states currently fall the way they're leaning (on said site - others have Indiana as a red state), Obama would get exactly 375.

I think it remains improbable, but not laughably improbable. Especially if pollsters are undercounting newly registered voters.

Darat
8th October 2008, 12:00 AM
My mother's response had me chuckling (she's 67 years old) - she had thought that McCain sounded like a querulous doddering old bloke, she watched the debate live last night and she said she was astonished to learn that he is a querulous doddering old bloke - in her words "He couldn't get a job at B&Q." (B&Q are a large UK DIY chain who are well known for employing older people.)

Her opinion of the debate matches my own - boring, stiff and not a debate just a format for each candidate to spout off their prepared sound-bites, Prime Minister questions it is not! On balance I would say McCain came across slightly better.

leftysergeant
8th October 2008, 02:07 AM
I'm calling it for Obama.

Did you watch the crawl of the responses from the undecided Ohio voters? McCain pretty nearly flat-lined when they were talking military policies. This is supposed to be the strongest point the Republicans have going for them.

Uh-oh!

The Painter
8th October 2008, 03:42 AM
Yes, he's been harping on that one - our beloved JREF president is not happy about it (http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2008/09/15/john-mccain-literally-antiscience/).


From your link;

A lot of great scientists got their first glimpse of the stars in a planetarium.

Their first look at the stars??? Why didn't they just go outside??

Pssst. they are not really stars. They are little dots of light that represent the stars. In the computer age, aren't planetariums obsolete?

chipmunk stew
8th October 2008, 03:55 AM
Best line of the night went to Obama:
Senator McCain, in the last debate and again today suggested that I don't understand. It's true. There are some things I don't understand. I don't understand how we ended up invading a country that had nothing to do with 9/11....[wide-ranging criticism of Bush/McCain foreign policy follows]

Sasha
8th October 2008, 04:41 AM
My mother's response had me chuckling (she's 67 years old) - she had thought that McCain sounded like a querulous doddering old bloke, she watched the debate live last night and she said she was astonished to learn that he is a querulous doddering old bloke - in her words "He couldn't get a job at B&Q." (B&Q are a large UK DIY chain who are well known for employing older people.)

Her opinion of the debate matches my own - boring, stiff and not a debate just a format for each candidate to spout off their prepared sound-bites, Prime Minister questions it is not! On balance I would say McCain came across slightly better.

I thought the same thing - it's not a debate at all, just a stand-up recitation. I fell asleep after 45 minutes. I came here this morning hoping I had missed some inciteful speech or even a well-laid zinger but it sounds like the whole thing was just a yawner.

Tricky
8th October 2008, 04:49 AM
The VP debate was much more interesting. After watching the debates, I'm wishing Biden had won the nomination and Obama was his VP pick. And Sarah was wearing a bikini.

seayakin
8th October 2008, 05:00 AM
Her opinion of the debate matches my own - boring, stiff and not a debate just a format for each candidate to spout off their prepared sound-bites, Prime Minister questions it is not! On balance I would say McCain came across slightly better.

Unfortunately, I have to agree with this completely and as others have said, debates are not so much a discussion of issues but stump speeches with their talking points given out of standard order.

I think the only thing that might change this is if you have a moderator who has power and the ability to try and force candidates to answer a question. Unfortunately, the campaigns would probably never agree to such a moderator.

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 06:08 AM
Obama is moving into "landslide" territory eh? I sincerely hope that all the Democrats adopt such a ridiculous stance based on nothing but hubris, it may just turn this thing around in the long run.

Don't kid yourself Ben. I admit that Obama is winning. But 375 electoral votes? That's just laugh out loud kool-aid drinking nonsense. You are giving him states that are currently still very, very very close.

How do you like your dish of crow prepared?

Puppycow
8th October 2008, 06:15 AM
http://mediacurves.com/images/SecondPresDebate.gif

Linky (http://mediacurves.com/)

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 06:16 AM
From your link;



Their first look at the stars??? Why didn't they just go outside??

Pssst. they are not really stars. They are little dots of light that represent the stars. In the computer age, aren't planetariums obsolete?

Well, if you lived in Chicago, you'd know that you can never see but a few stars even in the best of circumstances. And very very few of us are favored in this day and age with an absolutely dark sky, so the only way you can appreciate how many stars there are, or that you can see the Milky Way or the Magellanic Clouds or M-31 or the Orion Nebula by eye is in a planetarium.

Only in a planetarium can a teacher be assured a clear "night" for the execution of a planned lecture, and most primary school children simply cannot be gotten to a dark field in the middle of the night for one anyway.

And Planetariums are essential for teaching stellar navigation.

And yes, some people have vision that cannot correct for infinity, and they cannot appreciate the heavens except in a planetarium, or they have defects on night vision such that only in a planetarium, where you can increase the brightness of the objects far beyond what is natural, can they see any of them at all. I have spoken to several.

So, you can argue for luddite ignorance if you want to; it does not reflect well on you or your movement or your candidate.

Puppycow
8th October 2008, 06:17 AM
http://www.surveyusa.com/chartfx70/temp/CFV1008_085743204A9.png

Linky (http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollReportPopup.aspx?g=55bbbb41-b3aa-4ab2-8d18-a5b97b95b6c4&q=50455)

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 06:18 AM
http://www.surveyusa.com/chartfx70/temp/CFV1008_085743204A9.png

Linky (http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollReportPopup.aspx?g=55bbbb41-b3aa-4ab2-8d18-a5b97b95b6c4&q=50455)

Image link did not make it.

Puppycow
8th October 2008, 06:22 AM
In Striking Contrast To 1st Debate, State of Washington Sees Obama As ‘Clear Winner’ of Round #2 (http://www.surveyusa.com/index.php/2008/10/08/in-striking-contrast-to-1st-debate-state-of-washington-sees-obama-as-clear-winner-of-round-2/)

Immediately following last night’s town-hall debate, SurveyUSA interviewed 1,000 state of Washington adults, of whom 741 watched the debate. Of debate watchers:

54% say Obama was the clear winner.
29% say McCain was the clear winner.
18% say there was no clear winner.
After the first Presidential Debate, Washington State gave McCain equal marks with Obama. Last night, Obama margin is almost 2:1.

Debate audience was split on whether candidates spent too much time, or just the right amount of time, attacking each other. Audience was 21% Republican, 40% Democrat, 38% Independent. This is significant because it means some Republicans may have lost interest in the race. Republican audience was larger for the 1st presidential and the vice presidential debate. Republicans by 7:1 saw McCain as the clear winner. Democrats by 11:1 saw Obama as the clear winner. Independents, the most critical and coveted group, broke 5:3 for Obama.

Puppycow
8th October 2008, 06:26 AM
Image link did not make it.

Hmm. It appears on my screen. Oh, well. You can click the link. It shows that 56% of Californians polled by SurveyUSA thought that Obama won the debate. 26% thought that McCain won.

California, By More Than 2:1, Sees Obama as ‘Clear Winner’ of 2nd Presidential Debate
SurveyUSA Breaking News - 3 hours ago
Just as California did after the 1st presidential debate, just as California did after the vice presidential debate, CA judges Barack Obama the “clear winner” of the 2nd presidential debate. Immediately following last night’s town-hall, SurveyUSA interviewed 1,250 CA adults, of whom 904 watched. Of debate watchers:

56% say Obama was the clear winner.
26% say McCain was the clear winner.
18% say there was no clear winner.

Debate audience was split on whether candidates spent too much time, or just the right amount of time, attacking each other. Audience was 27% Republican, 45% Democrat, 26% Independent. Republicans by 5:2 saw McCain as the clear winner. Democrats by 8:1 saw Obama as the clear winner. Independents, the most critical and coveted group, broke 5:3 for Obama.

not_so_new
8th October 2008, 06:28 AM
I said this a page or so back but I will say it again.

Everyone is complaining that they didn't answer questions etc. but..... they had a minute (which they often went over) to give answers to some pretty heavy questions.

Do we honestly expect them to be able to get into deep, drawn-out nuts and bolts answers to so of the most important questions of our time?

When they are given 1 minute to present a policy that in some cases took years to develop is it fair to say that their replies are less than complex?

And let's look at the audience for these replies, what is the depth of the average American's understanding on these issues? Rule number ONE of any speaking engagement Know Thy Audience.

A minute IS just about enough time to present a good sound bite and not much more. Blame the short attention span of the voters, blame the debate format, blame the network coverage and blame the candidates to agreeing to this format but don't blame them for sticking loosely to it.

The only way around it in my eyes to to ask fewer questions and let both candidates free form, debate each other toe to toe. That does not happen in American politics so I think the blame is on all of us for wanting or accepting short sound bites.

Puppycow
8th October 2008, 06:28 AM
Not sure why SurveyUSA polled these non-swing states, but that's what they have.

Pookster
8th October 2008, 06:37 AM
Obama was more in command of his answers again. McCain again seemed too intent on trying to jab at Obama. There were a lot of miss opportunities where McCain could've put Obama's back to the wall if he had focused more on articulating his positions better. He came across as "I know I can do the job, trust me", instead of actually demonstrating he had a grasp of the issues (he was better though on foreign policy).

Obama obviously benefits the most from last night. He held his own when he could've easily been upstage by McCain in a setting Obama was perceived beforehand to be weaker in. Obama looked Presidential. He seemed in command of himself and his answers. He wasn't overly negative. That should continue to help the perception of him with undecideds.

McCain hurt himself with his style and presentation. He seemed to realize Obama was doing well, and it frustrated him ... and it showed.

quarky
8th October 2008, 06:56 AM
I fell asleep, but it felt like I won.

The Painter
8th October 2008, 06:57 AM
Well, if you lived in Chicago, you'd know that you can never see but a few stars even in the best of circumstances. And very very few of us are favored in this day and age with an absolutely dark sky, so the only way you can appreciate how many stars there are, or that you can see the Milky Way or the Magellanic Clouds or M-31 or the Orion Nebula by eye is in a planetarium.:cool:
And yes, some people have vision that cannot correct for infinity, and they cannot appreciate the heavens except in a planetarium, or they have defects on night vision such that only in a planetarium, where you can increase the brightness of the objects far beyond what is natural, can they see any of them at all. I have spoken to several.

So, you can argue for luddite ignorance if you want to; it does not reflect well on you or your movement or your candidate.


I see you completely ignored my question about computers making planetariums obsolete.

If I lived in Chicago?? Yeah, we don't have any lights in New York.

Oh and please tell me what is my movement and who is my candidate? Just because I don't like Obama, doesn't mean I like McCain. You assume a lot.

Denver
8th October 2008, 07:05 AM
...I know, he is an older guy and he lived through a lot in Vietnam and that effects his mobility. That said, he looks stuff (because he is) and I think that effects his "likability" while he is up and walking around.

My girlfriend / parter said that when he says "my friends" with his body language it almost seems like an attack, almost too forceful. I think this is a really bad format for McCain.

The whole "My Friends" thing is an interesting tactic. I don't think it is meant to actually trick anyone into thinking he is our personal friend. As you noted, McCain has an age element. Rather than ignore this, a good strategy would be to play up its strengths. Such as the experience that comes with age.

The whole "my friends" thing hearkens back to earlier times, when politicians made speeches on radio or in black and white news reels, when we didn't have the internet to discover, analyze, and spread the dirt on the candidates like we can today. There was more trust, even awe (and fear), of the high level politicians, and the belief that it was they and their decisions that guided our nation. Growing up to be president was sometimes seen as the ultimate goal in school.

So I think McCain is using that phrase to try to create a mood that makes people connect him to those earlier times. To "The Good Old Days".

Good luck with that.

Pookster
8th October 2008, 07:07 AM
I said this a page or so back but I will say it again.

Everyone is complaining that they didn't answer questions etc. but..... they had a minute (which they often went over) to give answers to some pretty heavy questions.

Do we honestly expect them to be able to get into deep, drawn-out nuts and bolts answers to so of the most important questions of our time?

When they are given 1 minute to present a policy that in some cases took years to develop is it fair to say that their replies are less than complex?

And let's look at the audience for these replies, what is the depth of the average American's understanding on these issues? Rule number ONE of any speaking engagement Know Thy Audience.

A minute IS just about enough time to present a good sound bite and not much more. Blame the short attention span of the voters, blame the debate format, blame the network coverage and blame the candidates to agreeing to this format but don't blame them for sticking loosely to it.

The only way around it in my eyes to to ask fewer questions and let both candidates free form, debate each other toe to toe. That does not happen in American politics so I think the blame is on all of us for wanting or accepting short sound bites.


The format sucked. It was a huge impediment to getting the kind of answers most wanted. Both candidates were forced to turn to their stump speech soundbites because of it. But of the two, Obama actually did answer some of the questions fairly well, IMO. McCain attempted to, but was just a little too clumsy because he was constantly trying to include jabs at Obama. There just wasn't enough time to do both.

not_so_new
8th October 2008, 07:46 AM
The format sucked. It was a huge impediment to getting the kind of answers most wanted. Both candidates were forced to turn to their stump speech soundbites because of it. But of the two, Obama actually did answer some of the questions fairly well, IMO. McCain attempted to, but was just a little too clumsy because he was constantly trying to include jabs at Obama. There just wasn't enough time to do both.

I agree. I think that Obama is winning these debates in most people's eyes because he is doing a better job of staying on point and answering the questions mostly as they are asked.

McCain spent way too much time attacking last night and given a limited time to respond there wasn't enough time to do both as you said. Funny but most pundits feel McCain "had to attack" but if in the end that cost him the debate what was the point.

Obama just looked more calm cool and collected because he wasn't looking for a shot at McCain every chance he could find an opening. McCain on the other hand just seemed to be always playing from behind because he was always looking to counter Obama instead of presenting his own plan clearly.

At least that was my take and judging by the polling numbers I have seen I think a lot of people agree with me.

Upchurch
8th October 2008, 07:49 AM
I've seen McCain tell a joke. The man has a sense of humor, but he lost it somewhere along the campaign trail.

hair plugs? really?

Pookster
8th October 2008, 07:59 AM
I've seen McCain tell a joke. The man has a sense of humor, but he lost it somewhere along the campaign trail.

hair plugs? really?


McCain forgot that jokes in a quiet room rarely go over too well.

Tricky
8th October 2008, 08:20 AM
Their first look at the stars??? Why didn't they just go outside??

Pssst. they are not really stars. They are little dots of light that represent the stars. In the computer age, aren't planetariums obsolete?
Do you think a planetarium is just a place to look at a projected 3D imageof the night sky? No, really, I want to know what you think planetariums are used for, because the image you're projecting of yourself isn't very sparkling.

pgwenthold
8th October 2008, 08:33 AM
In terms of "winning," this is absolutely a case where it is determining by popular opinion. It's not a debate competition, where a single judge declares a winner.

If the popular vote says Obama won the debate, then Obama won it. Because, in the end, the debate is not won or lost by who makes the best argument, but by who gains the most votes from it.

I've not heard anyone suggest that McCain is going to gain votes out of this. It doesn't make his base any more excited (although he has no base), and it doesn't sway many independents. That isn't a win for him.

Pookster
8th October 2008, 08:34 AM
I see you completely ignored my question about computers making planetariums obsolete.



Computers have made planetariums obsolete? Computers have made planetariums even more useful as a tool.

Your question indicates to me that you're not well informed on this matter. I suggest you do some research.

Tricky
8th October 2008, 08:41 AM
Pssst. they are not really stars. They are little dots of light that represent the stars. In the computer age, aren't planetariums obsolete?

No. A flat-screen representation of the stars is far inferior to a simulated sky. Of course, you could get a dome that was paneled with flat screen monitors and then design software to run the simulation, or even a computer that could do a 3D kind of I-Max sort of thing. Either one would cost orders of maginitude more than the planetarium projector.

Calling the planetarium projector an "overhead projector" is the equivalent of calling an electron microscope a "magnifying glass".

Alferd_Packer
8th October 2008, 08:41 AM
Their first look at the stars??? Why didn't they just go outside??

Pssst. they are not really stars. They are little dots of light that represent the stars. In the computer age, aren't planetariums obsolete?

Obviously you have never been inside a modern planetarium.

There is a lot more to the Adler planetarium than just a bunch of lights on the ceiling.

Computers? Hah.

JoeTheJuggler
8th October 2008, 09:01 AM
Well, if you lived in Chicago, you'd know that you can never see but a few stars even in the best of circumstances. And very very few of us are favored in this day and age with an absolutely dark sky, so the only way you can appreciate how many stars there are, or that you can see the Milky Way or the Magellanic Clouds or M-31 or the Orion Nebula by eye is in a planetarium.

Only in a planetarium can a teacher be assured a clear "night" for the execution of a planned lecture, and most primary school children simply cannot be gotten to a dark field in the middle of the night for one anyway.

And Planetariums are essential for teaching stellar navigation.

And yes, some people have vision that cannot correct for infinity, and they cannot appreciate the heavens except in a planetarium, or they have defects on night vision such that only in a planetarium, where you can increase the brightness of the objects far beyond what is natural, can they see any of them at all. I have spoken to several.

So, you can argue for luddite ignorance if you want to; it does not reflect well on you or your movement or your candidate.

I remember seeing the Night Sky show at Adler when I lived in Chicago in 1985. They started out showing what the sky looked like on a clear night from in the city. They pointed out a few of the bright stars that we might recognize. Then they said here's what it would look like on a clear night far from city lights.

Projector: Click.

The entire audience: Gasp!

dudalb
8th October 2008, 09:10 AM
I thought the same thing - it's not a debate at all, just a stand-up recitation. I fell asleep after 45 minutes. I came here this morning hoping I had missed some inciteful speech or even a well-laid zinger but it sounds like the whole thing was just a yawner.

Which means it was like 80% of the presendential debates.

dudalb
8th October 2008, 09:13 AM
Obviously you have never been inside a modern planetarium.

There is a lot more to the Adler planetarium than just a bunch of lights on the ceiling.

Computers? Hah.

I am looking forward to the Planterium in San Francisco opening again after being gone for five years while new digs In Golden Gate Park were being built. for it and the other California Academy of Sciences museums.It is supposed to have all the high tech bells and whistles.

normdoering
8th October 2008, 09:16 AM
I think it was in McCain's favor.
He had better control of himself and the debate.

Really?

According to Andy McCarthy, a Republican at NRO:
http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MmFkOTk5MTNhZjVjMmYzYzhlY2RiYmQzN2Y3ZGZjMTg=

I think tonight was a disaster for our side. I'm dumbfounded that no one else seems to think so. Obama did everything he needed to do, McCain did nothing he needed to do. What am I missing?

not_so_new
8th October 2008, 09:20 AM
The whole "My Friends" thing is an interesting tactic. I don't think it is meant to actually trick anyone into thinking he is our personal friend. As you noted, McCain has an age element. Rather than ignore this, a good strategy would be to play up its strengths. Such as the experience that comes with age.

The whole "my friends" thing hearkens back to earlier times, when politicians made speeches on radio or in black and white news reels, when we didn't have the Internet to discover, analyze, and spread the dirt on the candidates like we can today. There was more trust, even awe (and fear), of the high level politicians, and the belief that it was they and their decisions that guided our nation. Growing up to be president was sometimes seen as the ultimate goal in school.

So I think McCain is using that phrase to try to create a mood that makes people connect him to those earlier times. To "The Good Old Days".

Good luck with that.

This is actually a VERY good point.

McCain was born in '36. He would have been greatly effected by the way politicians of the 40's and 50's presented themselves in news reels and early TV.

He speaks like he sees politicians speak in his mind's eye. I don't know if he really does this consciously to reflect the good old days as much as he probably does it on instinct.

Back then that was the standard way a politician spoke but today it comes accost as disingenuous and condescending.... at least to me.

FaisonMars
8th October 2008, 09:50 AM
I was working last night, so I recorded the debate, and I'm listening to it now.

I wonder if McCain is trying to bring up the specter of $5000 toilet seats from the 80's again when saying that Obama asked for $3M for an "overhead" projector for the Adler Planetarium in Chicago.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-fact-check08oct08,0,869491.story

Yes! Let's cut out all of the few tens of millions of dollars in the budget going to educational institutions! That will solve the financial crisis!

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 10:02 AM
Do you think a planetarium is just a place to look at a projected 3D imageof the night sky? No, really, I want to know what you think planetariums are used for, because the image you're projecting of yourself isn't very sparkling.

EXACTLY. Now, the simple machines of the past did not do a whole lot more than display for you the sky at ANY date in the past or future (within about a 10,000 year window) but the new ones can take you on a space voyage to other planets or other stars as though you had a SciFi space drive. They can show you animations of anything, in fact. And a proper planetarium show is an educational experience where you show people something about the heavens using the planetarium projector as a prop to place the thing you are describing in its context.

You can even do shows about human history. For example, it is very common to do a "Star of Bethlehem" show where you explore what it might have been that the Magi saw which would have lead them to Israel at the time of Christ's birth. Whether you believe in the divinity of Christ, or even if he existed is immaterial to whether you can explore the idea that there was something that would have lead an astrologer of the time to think something might be occurring.

And you can show the stars as they existed when the Pyramids were built, and show that a different star, not Polaris, was the northern star then. And use that to explain precession of the equinoxes.

And you can use it to discuss ancient calendrical systems.

And you can put people AT Stonehenge or any other astronomically-aligned archeological site and show them how those alignments appear.

And of course you can project any film or any slides you want to in the process of your lesson.

I wager our friend here is utterly ignorant of how such theaters are used and how important they are in public education.

Alferd_Packer
8th October 2008, 10:08 AM
I wager our friend here is utterly ignorant of how such theaters are used and how important they are in public education.

I agree. I doubt that John McCain ever took any of his kids to a museum, zoo, aquarium or planetatium.

Pookster
8th October 2008, 10:12 AM
I agree. I doubt that John McCain ever took any of his kids to a museum, zoo, aquarium or planetatium.


It also doesn't help McCain appear to be in touch with 21st century technology. These new fangled projectors just aren't worth the money to him. To me, he just sounded ... old.

Tricky
8th October 2008, 10:13 AM
I agree. I doubt that John McCain ever took any of his kids to a museum, zoo, aquarium or planetatium.
Sarah probably did though. Like the Creation Museum (http://www.creationmuseum.org/).

FaisonMars
8th October 2008, 10:34 AM
We're building a new digital planetarium theater at Yale right now (we have only about $1M from a private donor, not $3M). Imagine a 30-foot diameter spherical high-resolution computer monitor over your head, onto which you can project anything at all-- a star field with reference lines, a full-dome video showing anything at all, a 3D representation of the molecules undergoing a chemical reaction, etc..

There are many, many concepts which are vastly easier to teach under a dome than on a flat screen. Such as showing how the sun rises and sets in the winter vs. the summer, or how navigators can use the angle of the north star to the horizon to determine latitude.

BeAChooser
8th October 2008, 10:43 AM
I'd go as far as to call this debate "boring."

What do you expect when the folks they put in the audience to ask the questions are still undecided at this stage in the election? To be undecided they basically have to be clueless and uninformed. :D

Now I'd like to see an old style debate. Where one candidate gets to ask a question of the other and the other gets a minute or two to respond. Then the other candidate gets a question. And they continue that process for a hour or two. Then we might actually get a picture of who these two are. :)

FaisonMars
8th October 2008, 10:45 AM
And they continue that process for a hour or two. Then we might actually get a picture of who these two are.

Jim Lehrer tried to get that going in the first debate, and McCain refused to look at Obama.

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 10:50 AM
Please see this related thread about the Adler; http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=4108334

Sasha
8th October 2008, 10:51 AM
Here's a little more info on the "projector." Bolding is mine. Apparently, and sadly, it was not funded.

"In tonight's debate, Sen. McCain cited a $3M earmark Sen. Obama sought for a projector at a planetarium.

For FY08, Sen. Obama requested a $3M earmark for a projector for the Adler Planetarium. The project was not funded.

Here is the verbatim description from Sen. Obama's request:

"Adler Planetarium, to support replacement of its projector and related equipment, $3,000,000.

One of its most popular attractions and teaching tools at the Adler Planetarium is the Sky Theater. The projection equipment in this theater is 40 years old, and is no longer supported with parts or service by the manufacturer. It has begun to fail, leaving the theater dark and groups of school students and other interested museum-goers without this very valuable and exciting learning experience."

http://www.npr.org/blogs/politics/2008/10/that_planetarium_earmark.html

R.Mackey
8th October 2008, 11:10 AM
What do you expect when the folks they put in the audience to ask the questions are still undecided at this stage in the election? To be undecided they basically have to be clueless and uninformed. :D

I didn't have a problem with the questions, either from the in-room audience, Internet submissions, or the moderator.

My problem was with the answers. Both candidates were indirect and stuck to prepared talking points. They didn't have to do that.


Now I'd like to see an old style debate. Where one candidate gets to ask a question of the other and the other gets a minute or two to respond. Then the other candidate gets a question. And they continue that process for a hour or two. Then we might actually get a picture of who these two are. :)

I'd agree, however it's easy to see how such a method could be abused. I have little doubt this approach would devolve into soundbites and loaded questions instantly. Negativity works, sad to say. With the "town hall" format or an independent moderator, we at least deflect some of that by forcing them to respond to a neutral party, rather than simply open fire with invective right off the bat.

Ideally, I'd like to see a brief from each candidate. Say 50-100 pages, outlining in very clear and concrete terms their domestic priorities, goals for foreign policy, spending plan, metrics, etc. Let us decide on that basis. They frequently provide a shadow of this, but hard details are anathema to current campaign strategies. It's easier to vote for a vague happy promise than a well-reasoned but slightly painful compromise.

The debate format, for me, serves primarily as a test of their ability to present and lead in discussion, and to think on their feet, much less tangible but nonetheless critical for a President. Our current debates are flawed, but they do at least serve this purpose.

pgwenthold
8th October 2008, 11:24 AM
Ideally, I'd like to see a brief from each candidate. Say 50-100 pages, outlining in very clear and concrete terms their domestic priorities, goals for foreign policy, spending plan, metrics, etc.

You mean something like a website?

Have you ever looked at Barack Obama's website?

R.Mackey
8th October 2008, 11:42 AM
You mean something like a website?

Have you ever looked at Barack Obama's website?

Yes. I've also looked at McCain's. And Kerry's, W's, Gore's, etc. I haven't read Obama's book, however.

It's a start. There is quite a lot of vagary there, however, I'm sure you'll agree.

Dr Adequate
8th October 2008, 03:56 PM
Obama won the post-debate. (http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/08/debate-audience-members-talk-about-candidates/#more-6556)

Both women, as well as the third audience member, were especially emphatic about their feelings on the two men’s performance after the debate. All three said that Mr. McCain shook hands with several audience members and then left fairly quickly. Mr. Obama and his wife, Michelle, stuck around to shake far more hands, pose for pictures, sign autographs, and answer more questions, including from people who had been on stage but did not get a chance to ask their questions. Only when Secret Service agents told them it was time to go did the couple leave (upon which they headed for a post-debate fundraiser at Al and Tipper Gore’s house nearby).

“McCain leaving right afterward was pretty shocking to me – even some of the big McCain fans among us were really surprised he did that,” Ms. Jackson said. “I thought the Obamas came off like real people much more in the end.”

Ms. Trella added: “I was very impressed that the Obamas stayed til the very end, shook everyone’s hand, and just seemed very accessible. I think they won some people over by just sticking around and seeming happy to talk more.”

Maybe McCain had to "race back to Washington" to save the economy again.

Tricky
8th October 2008, 04:25 PM
(http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/08/debate-audience-members-talk-about-candidates/#more-6556)Maybe McCain had to "race back to Washington" to save the economy again.
No. It was just past his bedtime.

chipmunk stew
8th October 2008, 04:56 PM
No. It was just past his bedtime.
Maybe he had to poop.

The Painter
8th October 2008, 05:02 PM
And you can show the stars as they existed when the Pyramids were built, and show that a different star, not Polaris, was the northern star then. And use that to explain precession of the equinoxes.

And you can use it to discuss ancient calendrical systems.

And you can put people AT Stonehenge or any other astronomically-aligned archeological site and show them how those alignments appear.

And of course you can project any film or any slides you want to in the process of your lesson.

Did you say project?????

WOW it can do all that!!!! I didn't know that scientists needed to look at that stuff. I thought they already knew about that stuff. A planetarium is nothing more than a sophisticated overhead projector. You want to do research and discovery, you use the Hubble Telescope. You want pretty pictures, go to the planetarium. I have nothing against planetariums as teaching devices, but to say someone got their first look at the stars in a planetarium is insane. I'm sure they saw the stars on their way to the planetarium.

And of course you can project any film or any slides you want to in the process of your lesson

Hey, if they showed Spiderman or Batman movies in there maybe they would make enough money to support themselves? Oh wait, IMAX beat them to it. Too bad.

Still waiting for answers to the other questions.

FaisonMars
8th October 2008, 06:59 PM
You want to do research and discovery, you use the Hubble Telescope. You want pretty pictures, go to the planetarium.

A planetarium is primarily a teaching tool. For certain applications (such as teaching positional astronomy) it is by far the best tool to use. It can also be used for entertainment, and for many it's also a source of inspiration.

Planetariums can also be used in historical research. For example, there's some question about whether or not a particular cycle in the Mayan calendar is related to a conjunction of the five naked-eye planets. You can run the planetarium backwards in time and see when and if such a conjunction would have been visible from Mexico.

Tricky
8th October 2008, 07:12 PM
A planetarium is nothing more than a sophisticated overhead projector.
Do you agree then that an electron microscope is nothing more than a sophisticated magnifying glass?

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 08:10 PM
Do you agree then that an electron microscope is nothing more than a sophisticated magnifying glass?

And a Space Shuttle is nothing more than a sophisticated Piper Cub! :D

MattusMaximus
8th October 2008, 08:27 PM
As both a physics & astronomy professor and someone who has worked in a planetarium running the projector, I have to say that I am absolutely appalled by the willful ignorance displayed by The Painter on the subject of planetarium use.

TP: My advice is...

1. Try reading a little something about astronomy & planetarium technology before you spout nonsense, and

2. keep this particular line of discussion out of the politics threads. It belongs in the science & tech threads - go on and post your ill-informed rants there, if you have the guts. You're likely to get torn to shreds, "my friend." ;)

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 08:40 PM
As both a physics & astronomy professor and someone who has worked in a planetarium running the projector, I have to say that I am absolutely appalled by the willful ignorance displayed by The Painter on the subject of planetarium use.

TP: My advice is...

1. Try reading a little something about astronomy & planetarium technology before you spout nonsense, and

2. keep this particular line of discussion out of the politics threads. It belongs in the science & tech threads - go on and post your ill-informed rants there, if you have the guts. You're likely to get torn to shreds, "my friend." ;)

I never knew that about you! :)

We should discuss mirror-making some time if you are interested in that part of things!

MattusMaximus
8th October 2008, 09:16 PM
I never knew that about you! :)


That's because I usually hang around in the sci/tech threads. Just recently I came here, and I'll likely leave again after the election.

We should discuss mirror-making some time if you are interested in that part of things!


Sure. PM me sometime.

BenBurch
8th October 2008, 09:37 PM
That's because I usually hang around in the sci/tech threads. Just recently I came here, and I'll likely leave again after the election.

....

Note the thread I just bumped in there; If you have any interesting ideas on the physical mechanism of glass polishing, I'd love to hear them.

SezMe
8th October 2008, 10:12 PM
....back to the OP....

I agree that the debate formats and execution leave a lot to be desired. This is one area where I long for the good old days when the League of Women Voters decided on the format and moderator and invited the candidates and the networks to show up. (At least that is how I remember it).

Now it's the two political parties running their own show and both, being risk averse, drive the process into banality.

MattusMaximus
9th October 2008, 09:48 PM
Agreed. I'd love to go back to the days when the LWV ran the show. I'd also like to see more third party candidates get some air time during the debates.

BeAChooser
10th October 2008, 11:14 AM
The debate format, for me, serves primarily as a test of their ability to present and lead in discussion, and to think on their feet, much less tangible but nonetheless critical for a President.

You really think that two people who've achieved the level of Senator haven't already demonstrated those things?

SezMe
10th October 2008, 12:39 PM
I know of one state governor who hasn't.

R.Mackey
11th October 2008, 01:26 PM
You really think that two people who've achieved the level of Senator haven't already demonstrated those things?

Name "Quayle" mean anything to you?

Besides, the Vice Presidential contest is not and should not be limited to Senators.

Dr Adequate
11th October 2008, 09:28 PM
Oh yes, remember the black guy who was told by McCain that he "probably never heard of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac before this".

He had. (http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/10/09/1523335.aspx)

I'm surprised this didn't get more discussion. What was McCain doing being rude and condescending to a member of the audience?

Freddy
11th October 2008, 09:33 PM
I'm a bit late to the party, but I'll add my two cents. All Obama had to do in order to win was not embarrass himself. He managed that, so I'd give him the win on that basis, though if the polls were tied I'd have called it a draw.

GreyICE
16th October 2008, 09:13 AM
I see you completely ignored my question about computers making planetariums obsolete.

If I lived in Chicago?? Yeah, we don't have any lights in New York.

Oh and please tell me what is my movement and who is my candidate? Just because I don't like Obama, doesn't mean I like McCain. You assume a lot.

You live in my city? I'd say I'm surprised except after riding the subway around here for long enough you lose your ability to be surprised.

In any case, claiming a piece of technology is obsolete and lying about what a piece of technology is are two completely different things (a bit like the difference between saying "Battleships are no longer useful in modern naval warfare" and "That's not a Battleship, that's a submarine!"). McCain did the latter, not the former.