Saturday, September 27, 2008


The moment is compelling and the nation is in crisis, but the debate never got going!
by Charlie Leck

I’m listening again to some of the Sarah Palin interviews with both Sean Hannity and Katie Couric. One of them is playing in the background as I write this. The Hannity interviews were easy for her and they were designed to be that way. Hannity showed himself to be anything but a real and unbiased journalist. He’s a total fake.

One gets a more insightful look at Palin in the Couric interviews. I am quite amazed. This is not the same person who had a teleprompter in front of her at the RNC National Convention. I actually feel a tinge of sympathy for her. Rush Limbaugh pushed this woman on to the national scene. The McCain campaign rolled the dice by choosing her as a candidate for Vice President because their man was weak with the far-right voters. At this moment she is certainly in over her head. Perhaps, she’s a quick learner and by Thursday night’s VP debates she’ll figure some things out. I think the organization will keep her tied to a tight script in all her answers that night. They’ll want to avoid free-lancing by her as much as possible. We’ll see.

At the moment, the thought of Sarah Palin as the chief executive of our nation is quite frightening. Even some significant numbers of conservatives are backing off on her and wondering if the party didn’t make a mistake. She still has approximately six weeks to get up to speed in order to convince voters she can handle the job. Unfortunately, she has only 5 days to get ready to debate Joe Biden.

Yet, as awkward as she has been and as weak as this ticket looks, there is an extremely good chance that it is going to be voted into office by a very strange voting public. A very thorough Stanford University survey indicates more than 30 percent of voters who normally vote for Democrats have negative feelings about blacks that may influence them to vote against Barack Obama because he is African American. This kind of stuff is depressing to many of us. A nephew recently wrote to me and said it both plainly and sadly:

“OUTRAGEOUS!!! I am so angry at this government, at the Republicans, at the supposedly 'honorable' McCain... If he wins the election, I am going to give serious thought [to] finding elsewhere to live. If South Africa wasn't in such turmoil, we would have moved back there already. Of course, with this housing crisis, we're stuck with your place for years to come. Thank goodness we can actually meet the mortgage payments each far.”
I have sympathy for his anger. I often feel the same heat inside. The idiots on the far right scream out that we should 'go ahead and leave then.' It isn’t quite so easy, is it? No, should we lose again in this November’s election, we’ll just need to work harder to convince more Americans that we can be a better, kinder and even freer nation than we are.

The polls look okay, so why the angst?
I watched the debate last night. I went on-line and watched it again this morning to make sure my first feelings were real. It was a bland, boring affair. There seemed to be no fight and no excitement in Obama. McCain seemed to be there for the taking and they just let him flop around meaninglessly without attacking. I didn’t like that.

Now, perhaps it’s a strategy that Obama’s campaign wizards have got worked out. Nevertheless, I still don’t get it. Obama’s strength is his enthusiasm and his ability to think and talk on his feet. It wasn’t there last night. There was no winner and no loser.

Perhaps, too, it’s the crisis situation we’re in right now. Maybe the campaign decided it was wisest to go softly and appear more compromising and genial.

One more debate as bland and boring as this one was and no one will be watching the third encounter.

The polls have improved for Obama in the last week. I'm wondering, though, if this strange and tepid debate will have some negative impact on his standing.

No comments:

Post a Comment