Remarks And Asides, Debate Edition

I thought, at times, I could hear Bob Schieffer snoring during Monday night’s debate.  He did wake up long enough to say, “Obama bin Laden.”


The real way to conduct a debate, if we have to have them in a format approved by both parties, would be to have partisan journalists question the candidates. That would be much more entertaining and much more informative. It would be like real life, where candidates are asked tough questions by people who give a damn, instead of by sleepy journalists who are afraid of being accused by conservatives of bias.

We could have, say, Rachel Maddow question Romney and, uh, well, there’s no one quite like Rachel Maddow on the other side, so I guess that wouldn’t work.


Among the many whoppers Romney told last night, he said killing ObamaCare, which he has admitted he grandfathered, would reduce the deficit. Of course killing ObamaCare would increase the deficit by about $109 billion, at least if you believe the Congressional Budget Office. But Republicans don’t believe the CBO, except when they do.


Obama’s line during the debate, “Nothing Governor Romney just said is true,” should be put on a bumper sticker, which, with the help of a magic marker, would still have usefulness even if Mittens becomes president: “Nothing Governor President Romney just said is true.


Another Romney whopper told yet again, despite a tsunami of pants-on-fire criticism, was the “Apology Tour” line, first birthed by, I think, foreign policy expert Sean Hannity. And Romney’s bogus claim was enthusiastically, you might say orgasmically, endorsed by conservative intellectual—in this case perhaps that’s an oxymoron—Charles Krauthammer, who actually claimed Romney won the debate by virtue of his repeating that much-debunked claim:

People don’t care that much about what our policy on Syria is gonna be. They care about how America is perceived in the world and how America carries itself in the world. And the high point of that debate for Romney is when he devastatingly leveled the charge of Obama going around the world on an apology tour…

He actually said that. I’m not making that up. He said people don’t really give a damn about our actual policies, only other nation’s perceptions. And I’m not making the following up either, which Krauthammer uttered during his awesome analysis of the debate:

I thought Romney had the day. He looked presidential and the President did not, and that’s the impression I think that’s gonna be left.

Let me get this straight: The President of the United States wasn’t, uh, presidential. Hmm. I’ll have to give that some deep, deep thought, since it came from a brilliant conservative thinker.


And speaking of brilliant conservative thinkers, after the debate was over, Romney enthusiast and Limbaugh impersonator, Ann Coulter, tweeted:

That, my friends, passes for brilliant commentary in Fox-fed brains. I bet she spent the better part of the weekend thinking that one up. I wonder if ABC’s This Week, a once reputable Sunday program, will have her back for her insightful opinions? She sure looks good sitting next to yet another brilliant conservative thinker, George Will, whose brilliance is all the more blinding in her presence.


When Romney was in prep school terrorizing kids he thought were gay, he should have been studying geography:

ROMNEY: Syria is Iran’s only ally in the Arab world. It’s their route to the sea.

Go look it up.


After listening to some undecided voters share their opinions on the debate, I have decided they should all be rounded up and sent to live in one state and be done with it. I propose Kansas, since they can’t muck up that state any more than Republicans have mucked it up. And since there isn’t a whole lot of stuff to do in Kansas, they will have little trouble making up their minds about whether to go out on the town or stay at home and read absolutely nothing.


Finally, the best lines of the night, and for some of us, a long damn time coming:



  1. 1. The “horses and bayonets” zinger is destined for the presidential debate highlight archives for sure. It was brilliant debating because it showed not only executive appreciation for military hardware capabilities but gave proper ridicule to the budget-heavy Romney approach which appears to hearken back to Reagan’s 600-ship navy, something I supported at the time. But that was the Cold War, the one in which we won by outspending the opposition. That’s hardly the approach we want now, especially with the national debt at 16 Trillion dollars. How bizarre, that the GOP stalls the farm bill and freezes action over the Bush tax-cut issue, not to mention attacking Sesame Street, while at the same time advocating spending wildly on a Defense build-up the military hasn’t asked for and we can’t afford. Hmm. What’s wrong with this picture?

    2. Although it indicates some exposure in a briefing sometime, Romney’s mention of the sea port exposes a fuzzy understanding of things naval and geographical. Iran has one deep water port, at Umm Qasar very near its border with Kuwait, but that’s at the northern end of the Persian Gulf. The Gulf is immensely crowded and of course only accesses the Indian Ocean, so it’s not nearly so useful for trade with Europe as would be one on the Mediterranean. Syria has two such ports, one of which is being used regularly by Russian warships. However, they are about 400 miles from the Iranian border and materials (oil pipeline?) would have to cross Iraq in the bargain. I suppose it could happen. Maybe in a few decades, you know, after the Middle East gets their collective act together. 🙄


    • 1. Nice point about GOP priorities. Bizarre, indeed. I saw on Fox an entire effort to make Obama look like the uninformed one on the issue of horses and bayonets. They were actually quoting sources that said horses and bayonets are still used in the military and Chris Wallace actually suggested that maybe it was Obama who wasn’t in touch with what the military is doing. Of course Obama didn’t say horses and bayonets were no longer in use, but that they were fewer in number today than in 1916, a fact I suppose got lost in the Obama hate-fest on Fox after Obama clearly cleaned Romney’s debate clock.

      2. I don’t necessarily hold it against a candidate because they get confused on geography or can’t remember the name of a foreign leader. But when a candidate is as haughty as Romney is, he deserves some criticism for trying to pretend like he knew something he clearly didn’t know. And imagine if Obama had made a mistake like that. For God’s sake, I still hear that silly “57 states” remark repeated by conservatives.


  2. RDG,

    The bar Romney needed to jump last night in order to satisfy his supporters must have been ground level. When Sarah Palin rushes to your defense on foreign policy issues it means you need her front porch to see Obama’s “apology tour”, instead of the always handy garage car elevator. I assume Mitt’s campaign staff considered his very recent foreign policy-as-sabler rattling a bit too fierce for suburban women voters. Ergo he pretty much agreed with Obama’s approach to dealing with a dangerous world, but believes it needs a shady car salesman to provide it with more plaid sport coat “leadership.”

    It’s a good thing for Obama haters that Donald Trump has another bombshell to drop, one that will prove to be a game changer. Who knew that a boorish television millionaire — with what appears to be a taxidermy experiment gone wrong resting on his head — would deliver the fatal blow?


    • Juan,

      Was there anything more pathetic, more embarrassing for American civilization, than that Donald Trump thing? Barack Obama has a strange kind of power over these people such that they will go on television and make fools of themselves repeatedly. It is unbleepingbelievable.


  3. Yellow Dog

     /  October 24, 2012

    Obama won. Romney lost. But I’m not hearing the media talking about this debate like it did the others. Amazing.


    • The reason for that is because, unlike those of us on the left who admitted defeat in the first debate, those on the right refused to admit defeat for Romney. That meant that the national news business could not form an all-encompassing narrative that Obama was the clear winner, even though the polls showed that. What all this means is just how sensitive is the mainstream press to what happens on Fox and the right wing. They fear being labeled as “biased” by the whiners on Fox and in right-wing media. Thus, without the blessing of pundits on the right, the narrative became something like a draw. It is sickening.


  4. RDG,

    Prior to The Donald’s “bombshell” announcement there were rumors that the fake billionaire had found divorce papers filed by the Obamas. I’m thinking of sending him an email offering my college transcripts for a mere $115,000. That should keep me in pipe tobacco and brandy for another year; maybe even deluxe seating at Dolly Parton’s indoor rodeo/restaurant if I stick to cheaper brandy.

    BTW, I found this nugget from Anne Laurie that puts the most recent example of Medieval Family Values in the proper light: “Somebody needs to tell downstream GOP candidates that “The Handmaid’s Tale” was never intended to serve as a technical manual.”


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