Sixty million voters watched Obama debate Romney on television last night. Who won? At my home, it was a hands-down victory for the remote. The longest I could actually stay tuned to the debate was about two minutes at a time.
First of all,”South Beach Tow” was on, and, given a choice between two guys in suits making faces at each other (what’s up with that?) or South Beach Tow’s Bernice going upside the head of a snotty Brit kid claiming diplomatic immunity (“that means I don’t have to obey the laws of your stupid country!”), well, I went with Bernice.
“Restaurant Stakeout” also offered some interesting moments — like the one where the chef tells a waiter to serve a table a plate of calimari just sent back to the kitchen by another table:
“Did they eat any of it?”
“I think they stuck a spoon in it.”
The Yankees were playing the Sox in the last game of the season, and had to win to finish first in the AL East — but I don’t watch baseball until the playoffs, so there was little temptation there.
But I did manage to catch a total of about 30 minutes of the debate. Impressions:
What is that lip-smacking thing Romney does? I never noticed that before. He starts a statement with a quick pursing of his lips and an audible smack as he releases them. I think this may be a kind of midwestern thing.
What was Obama looking at? Romney either looked straight at the camera or at Obama. Obama seemed mostly to be looking either his his feet (“My God! My socks don’t match!”) or at an imaginary teleprompter somewhere to his left. Analysts speculated he might have been looking at Lehrer? Why? He didn’t pay any attention to him.
Do they think we are actually keeping track of the math? As noted, an awful lot of this seemed to go like “three trillion but then 800 billion and another 1.2 trillion still leaves us with 2 trillion and that’s not even counting the 600 billion plus the 1.4 trillion from the next ten years….”
Did they decide beforehand who got to wear the blue tie and who wore the red tie? Obama had the cooler tie by far. Red ties are pretty much dead these days; a lightish blue has been the preferred color for statesmen, snappy dressers and hedge fund managers for some time now. I know; red state/blue state, but I’m not looking for Ryan to jump out in the next debate wearing a crimson suit. Maybe I should be.
What is this “middle class” I hear them talking about? After reading the newspapers and the blogs and watching television for the past four years, I had assumed that the nation was divided into roughly 310 million people on some form of government assistance (Democrats) or just barely squeaking by from paycheck to paycheck (Republicans), and a few dozen dozen or so trillionaires who light their Havanas with Rembrandt drawings (Demigods). Apparently I have been misinformed.
Who won. The consensus seems to be Romney, unless I go on Facebook, where many of my still-herbed-up friends from the 60s and 70s give it to Obama, along with a laurel wreath. Most of the mainstream media conceded a Romney victory, albeit with much pissing and moaning. Leading to:
Biggest Meltdown. Chris Matthews’s outburst was perhaps embarrassingly revealing. From realclearpolitics.com:
“Where was Obama tonight? He should watch — well, not just Hardball, Rachel, he should watch you, he should watch the Reverend Al [Sharpton], he should watch Lawrence. He would learn something about this debate. There’s a hot debate going on in this country. You know where it’s been held? Here on this network is where we’re having the debate,” Matthews said.
“We have our knives out,” Matthews said, admitting his network is trying their best to defend Obama and his policies. “We go after the people and the facts. What was he doing tonight? He went in there disarmed.”
Interesting. Matthews explains to Obama where he needs to go for his marching orders, because it’s MSNBC, not Obama, who commands the unicorn fart brigades. After all, Matthews’s pay grade is a lot higher than Obama’s.
Weirdest assessment came from Al Gore, who speculated that the 5000 foot altitude in Denver may have affected Obama’s performance. Obama prepped in Vegas, with a 2500 foot altitude, so it wasn’t like he went from Death Valley to Quito — and maybe we should ponder the fact that airplane cabins are only pressurized to 10,000 feet. Does Al think Obama gets addled every time he steps on Air Force One?
At the end, everything turned out just fine, though. Bernice tossed the Brit twit into a Port-O-San, and the chef was axed. The Yanks trashed the Sox to win home field advantage. And somewhere, I’m sure, Rachel Maddow was stomping her ruby-slippered feet. All in all, not a bad night.