“W&W: VP Debate”

On a special post-debate edition of Wilshire & Washington: On the Radio, I join Maegan Carberry and Teresa Valdez Klein to tackle the one and only vice presidential match up, along with special guest, political blogger Andy Sparrow. Who won? Who lost? Where was Gwen Ifill?

That’s the latest radio edition here.

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  1. William Bauer, MD says:

    **** corrected last paragraph****
    Loren Michaels to Sue Both Campaigns for Theft of Property?
    Last night the biggest robbery in American history took place. No I am not talking about the Wall Street bail out I am talking about the debates. Both campaigns stole intellectual property from Loren Michaels. The Obama Campaign stole the “Not Ready for Prime Time Players” title and Sarah Palin stole the Reagan-Machiavellian genius act from a 1980s Saturday Night Live routine.
    Since the Reagan-Carter debate there has not been a more lopsided performance then last night. Even MSNBC had to declare Sarah Palin the winner. The problem started with the Joe Biden himself. He appeared confident, assured and every bit the debater he is known to be. He answered questions coolly, calmly, and attacked the Bush administration while defending Obama’s record. He was polite to Sarah Palin and her family (something which could not be said about his harridan wife who was cold and dismissive of Sarah Palin while Todd was politely and warmly chatting it up in the background with Biden children). The problem came with the fact checks.
    The first job of any post debate spinners I learned, while working the 1988 presidential primarie,s is to correct the obvious errors your own candidate makes before the other side has a chance to spin them. This role was played to perfection last night by Hawaii’s Republican Governor Linda Lingle for the MSNBC audience. Lingle played this role well and pointed out, to an obviously very liberal audience, Sarah’s mistakes and then corrected them. This got the campaign on the record correcting them quickly and yet did not damage the enthusiasm occurring in the Fox watching crowd. Unfortunately, the Obama camp focused on attack (attaque, attaque, to jour de attaque) without correcting their own house first. It was about as effective of a strategy as the battle of Somme. Instead they let Karl Rove point out the obvious factual errors 40 minutes later and as of this writing they still have not issued any correction. Clearly it is amateur hour on the campaign trail. They have allowed the Republicans define them as liars, glib, and incompetent.
    The obvious errors started with Joe Biden claiming that McCain voted for the same tax increase for couples making over $42,000 a year as Obama did (he did not). Secondly just moments after stating that we were spending 10 billion a month in Iraq he then stated that we have only spent in Afghanistan in 7 years what we have spent in 3 weeks in Iraq (for those of you who are math challenged that means George Bush fought the entire Afghan war for under $7 billion – making George Bush the genius of the century. Even if he meant 3 months then it still only comes down to 30 billion dollars which is only slightly above what Accorn was going to get out of the recent bailout bill). The most glaring error , if only because it was delivered with masked contempt, was that he tried to school Sarah on the Constitution by sighting the wrong section of the Constitution as to what delineates the executive branch’s roles and responsibilities are. This schooling also showed a lack of understanding of U.S. history for the role Sarah Palin described was actually performed by John Adams until he got too bored and frustrated to do it any longer. This is from a man who headed the Senate Judiciary Committee for how long? Then to top it off he bragged about giving our lexicon the verb “to Bork.” This is like Credit Suisse bragging about laundering Nazi War funds; it may play to your core constituency of despots and thieves but is generally not something you acknowledge in public (Robert Bork to those of you who are history challenged was by all sides considered and is considered one of the preeminent legal scholars of the late 20th century whom Biden and his colleagues smeared by using his video rental records (where is the zone of privacy?) and by accusing him of being anti-Semitic – this was a real surprise to his family, for this widower’s first wife, until she passed away in 1980, was Jewish).
    In the end, it took a campaign and staff of incredible ineptitude, or arrogance, to turn a marginally good performance into a travesty by not correcting errors out of the gate. This campaign staff error magnified rather than diminished Joe Biden’s obvious errors and thus calling into question his and his candidates entire ability to build and lead a good organization and thus to govern. Simply put one must now question if they are “Not Ready for Prime Time.”
    The Other Theft of Loren Michaels’ Property
    Sarah Palin pulled of a subtle performance of such genius after setting expectations so low that one can only think of Loren Michaels’ interpretation of Ronald Reagan where he at one moment plays the bumbling idiot in public and then turns around and plays a hard driven, ruthless, multilingual task master to the like of CIA William Casey and George Schultz. After the affable Eva Braun (Katie Couric), portrayed her as an idiot while then cooing over Joe Biden’s reference to FDR as going on Television during the Crash of 1929 to reassure people, It appears that Sarah Palin has perfected the Republican sport of taking out CBS anchors. Despite an intense format and the largest audience ever for a political debate in this country, Sarah Palin did not get “caught in the headlights” and seemed to answer questions to script while subtly chiding her opponent for his errors (“well I think the fact checker will go over this debate tomorrow”) while equally subtly bating a hostile media to be equal in the attacks of her opponent as they are with her by calling them out as biased after Biden’s obvious errors in the debate. She was obviously warm, charming and respectful. She started out by asking Senator Biden how she could address him. She spoke to the camera. She acknowledged she would not answer questions directly (something Joe Biden never acknowledged this obvious behavior but still as Gwen Ifill pointed out neither of them did answer her questions directly). Sarah kept to script except were she was supposedly weak like foreign policy and took the opportunity to shine. Specifically, she knew the name of the new General in charge of the Afghan Theater (a rank that implies confirmation by the Senate several times as all military officers are when they attain and advance in rank). Mostly she never got flustered or lost and outside of some occasional misspeaks, did not make any factual errors that would haunt her.
    Sarah Palin’s performance now brings into question what exactly transpired with the Couric interview and just how “cut” was it. Was Sarah Palin deliberately dogging and playing Katie Couric or did Katie Couric just edit the interview to make Sarah Palin look really bad? If Sarah Palin could do this well under this much pressure, then how many gotcha questions did Katie Couric ask? Furthermore, just how much editing did it take to produce something with this many errors and pauses by Sarah Palin? This now shifts the focus onto Katie Couric’s and CBS’s obvious pattern bias and unfairness (first Rather and now Couric) or simple gullibility to let Sarah Palin play them. The big entertainment industry question though is how long will the owners of this network put up with such incompetent or negligent management of such a valuable asset?
    What must be mentioned about the Debate and not central to the point of this article is the post debate atmospherics. It is often felt that debates are won and lost on these non-tangibles. How are these people really? Are they nice and decent people? Would you like them as neighbors? Would you trust them to look out for you and your family in a time of crisis? In this department, I think there is a disconnect between the Joe and his family and it will be interesting to see how it plays out. When Sarah Palin and her family came up on stage, I viewed them as the embodiment of Middle America. The nice husband, the little girl, the shy teenage daughter with the baby in her arms all coming up on stage, with the teenage daughter searching the Biden girls, for eye contact and acknowledgement. The Biden girls were haughty and stand offish never acknowledging or giving her anything but a dismissive look. Her open smile and search for approval melted before the worlds eyes as she was left out there holding her little brother. Everyone could empathize with this socially awkward moment from our adolescence but most of us do not suffer it in front of literally millions of viewers. Finally, Joe Biden came over and gave her a little hug and talked with her. You could see her brighten up and smile again– a moment of true grace on his part that brought tears to my eyes and to the eyes of others in the room with me. It is these moments that those of us in “fly-over country” look toward when evaluating candidates. Do they like us? Do they share our values? Do they care enough about us not to see us suffer and be humiliated? Had it been only the Biden daughters that acted this way it could be forgiven and forgotten (whose children do not act as we always want them to act) but it wasn’t. A few moments later Sarah Palin after just retrieving her baby from her daughter went over to talk with Mrs. Biden in what one would expect to be a woman to woman moment ( Mrs Biden cooing over little Trig and Sarah Palin talking up the Biden children, a normal exchange in Middle America when meeting strangers with their kids). Mrs. Biden however then went and snubbed Sarah Palin. She never made eye contact with Sarah and treated her with near total disdain. For Middle America it was important that the Biden family treat the Palins with grace and warmth. It acknowledges their, and by extension middle Americas, significance and worthiness. This was always Bill Clinton’s and recently Joe Biden’s genius. Acknowledge the other side’s worthiness as individuals while disagreeing with them. The Biden family however failed this test. The Biden women strutted up on stage and snubbed the Palin women. Haughty bitch is not an appreciated taste outside Hollywood and New York. I hope that is not how they feel about, or treat, the rest of us.

  2. William Bauer, MD says:

    Loren Michaels to Sue Both Campaigns for Theft of Property?
    Last night the biggest robbery in American history took place. No I am not talking about the Wall Street bail out I am talking about the debates. Both campaigns stole intellectual property from Loren Michaels. The Obama Campaign stole the “Not Ready for Prime Time Players” title and Sarah Palin stole the Reagan-Machiavellian genius act from a 1980s Saturday Night Live routine.
    Since the Reagan-Carter debate there has not been a more lopsided performance then last night. Even MSNBC had to declare Sarah Palin the winner. The problem started with the Joe Biden himself. He appeared confident, assured and every bit the debater he is known to be. He answered questions coolly, calmly, and attacked the Bush administration while defending Obama’s record. He was polite to Sarah Palin and her family (something which could not be said about his harridan wife who was cold and dismissive of Sarah Palin while Todd was politely and warmly chatting it up in the background with Biden children). The problem came with the fact checks.
    The first job of any post debate spinners I learned, while working the 1988 presidential primarie,s is to correct the obvious errors your own candidate makes before the other side has a chance to spin them. This role was played to perfection last night by Hawaii’s Republican Governor Linda Lingle for the MSNBC audience. Lingle played this role well and pointed out, to an obviously very liberal audience, Sarah’s mistakes and then corrected them. This got the campaign on the record correcting them quickly and yet did not damage the enthusiasm occurring in the Fox watching crowd. Unfortunately, the Obama camp focused on attack (attaque, attaque, to jour de attaque) without correcting their own house first. It was about as effective of a strategy as the battle of Somme. Instead they let Karl Rove point out the obvious factual errors 40 minutes later and as of this writing they still have not issued any correction. Clearly it is amateur hour on the campaign trail. They have allowed the Republicans define them as liars, glib, and incompetent.
    The obvious errors started with Joe Biden claiming that McCain voted for the same tax increase for couples making over $42,000 a year as Obama did (he did not). Secondly just moments after stating that we were spending 10 billion a month in Iraq he then stated that we have only spent in Afghanistan in 7 years what we have spent in 3 weeks in Iraq (for those of you who are math challenged that means George Bush fought the entire Afghan war for under $7 billion – making George Bush the genius of the century. Even if he meant 3 months then it still only comes down to 30 billion dollars which is only slightly above what Accorn was going to get out of the recent bailout bill). The most glaring error , if only because it was delivered with masked contempt, was that he tried to school Sarah on the Constitution by sighting the wrong section of the Constitution as to what delineates the executive branch’s roles and responsibilities are. This schooling also showed a lack of understanding of U.S. history for the role Sarah Palin described was actually performed by John Adams until he got too bored and frustrated to do it any longer. This is from a man who headed the Senate Judiciary Committee for how long? Then to top it off he bragged about giving our lexicon the verb “to Bork.” This is like Credit Suisse bragging about laundering Nazi War funds; it may play to your core constituency of despots and thieves but is generally not something you acknowledge in public (Robert Bork to those of you who are history challenged was by all sides considered and is considered one of the preeminent legal scholars of the late 20th century whom Biden and his colleagues smeared by using his video rental records (where is the zone of privacy?) and by accusing him of being anti-Semitic – this was a real surprise to his family, for this widower’s first wife, until she passed away in 1980, was Jewish).
    In the end, it took a campaign and staff of incredible ineptitude, or arrogance, to turn a marginally good performance into a travesty by not correcting errors out of the gate. This campaign staff error magnified rather than diminished Joe Biden’s obvious errors and thus calling into question his and his candidates entire ability to build and lead a good organization and thus to govern. Simply put one must now question if they are “Not Ready for Prime Time.”
    The Other Theft of Loren Michaels’ Property
    Sarah Palin pulled of a subtle performance of such genius after setting expectations so low that one can only think of Loren Michaels’ interpretation of Ronald Reagan where he at one moment plays the bumbling idiot in public and then turns around and plays a hard driven, ruthless, multilingual task master to the like of CIA William Casey and George Schultz. After the affable Eva Braun (Katie Couric), portrayed her as an idiot while then cooing over Joe Biden’s reference to FDR as going on Television during the Crash of 1929 to reassure people, It appears that Sarah Palin has perfected the Republican sport of taking out CBS anchors. Despite an intense format and the largest audience ever for a political debate in this country, Sarah Palin did not get “caught in the headlights” and seemed to answer questions to script while subtly chiding her opponent for his errors (“well I think the fact checker will go over this debate tomorrow”) while equally subtly bating a hostile media to be equal in the attacks of her opponent as they are with her by calling them out as biased after Biden’s obvious errors in the debate. She was obviously warm, charming and respectful. She started out by asking Senator Biden how she could address him. She spoke to the camera. She acknowledged she would not answer questions directly (something Joe Biden never acknowledged this obvious behavior but still as Gwen Ifill pointed out neither of them did answer her questions directly). Sarah kept to script except were she was supposedly weak like foreign policy and took the opportunity to shine. Specifically, she knew the name of the new General in charge of the Afghan Theater (a rank that implies confirmation by the Senate several times as all military officers are when they attain and advance in rank). Mostly she never got flustered or lost and outside of some occasional misspeaks, did not make any factual errors that would haunt her.
    Sarah Palin’s performance now brings into question what exactly transpired with the Couric interview and just how “cut” was it. Was Sarah Palin deliberately dogging and playing Katie Couric or did Katie Couric just edit the interview to make Sarah Palin look really bad? If Sarah Palin could do this well under this much pressure, then how many gotcha questions did Katie Couric ask? Furthermore, just how much editing did it take to produce something with this many errors and pauses by Sarah Palin? This now shifts the focus onto Katie Couric’s and CBS’s obvious pattern bias and unfairness (first Rather and now Couric) or simple gullibility to let Sarah Palin play them. The big entertainment industry question though is how long will the owners of this network put up with such incompetent or negligent management of such a valuable asset?
    What must be mentioned about the Debate and not central to the point of this article is the post debate atmospherics. It is often felt that debates are won and lost on these non-tangibles. How are these people really? Are they nice and decent people? Would you like them as neighbors? Would you trust them to look out for you and your family in a time of crisis? In this department, I think there is a disconnect between the Joe and his family and it will be interesting to see how it plays out. When Sarah Palin and her family came up on stage, I viewed them as the embodiment of Middle America. The nice husband, the little girl, the shy teenage daughter with the baby in her arms all coming up on stage, with the teenage daughter searching the Biden girls, for eye contact and acknowledgement. The Biden girls were haughty and stand offish never acknowledging or giving her anything but a dismissive look. Her open smile and search for approval melted before the worlds eyes as she was left out there holding her little brother. Everyone could empathize with this socially awkward moment from our adolescence but most of us do not suffer it in front of literally millions of viewers. Finally, Joe Biden came over and gave her a little hug and talked with her. You could see her brighten up and smile again– a moment of true grace on his part that brought tears to my eyes and to the eyes of others in the room with me. It is these moments that those of us in “fly-over country” look toward when evaluating candidates. Do they like us? Do they share our values? Do they care enough about us not to see us suffer and be humiliated? Had it been only the Biden daughters that acted this way it could be forgiven and forgotten (whose children do not act as we always want them to act) but it wasn’t. A few moments later Sarah Palin after just retrieving her baby from her daughter went over to talk with Mrs. Biden in what one would expect to be a woman to woman moment ( Mrs Biden cooing over little Trig and Sarah Palin talking up the Biden children, a normal exchange in Middle America when meeting strangers with their kids). Mrs. Biden however then went and snubbed Sarah Palin. She never made eye contact with Sarah and treated her with near total disdain. For Middle America it was important that the Biden family treat the Palins with grace and warmth. It acknowledges their, and by extension middle Americas, significance and worthiness. This was always Bill Clinton’s and recently Joe Biden’s genius. Acknowledge the other side’s worthiness as individuals while disagreeing with them. The Biden family however failed this test. The Biden women strutted up on stage but never snubbed the Palin women. Haughty bitch is not an appreciated taste outside Hollywood and New York. I hope that is not how they feel about, or treat, the rest of us.

  3. mikevanera says:

    Palin thinks that she lost the VP debate.
    Watch this interview here: http://tubedirects.net/index.php?q=Palin-Fox-interview

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