• jj

    Why bother?  Could either of them say anything to change your mind at this point?  Debates – which these shows aren’t – are for the undecided.  Nobody here is that.  I spent the evening tracking down – and finding! – a book I’ve been looking for since I read it in the 6th grade.  I’ve never since ever run into anyone who ever even heard of it, but now I have one coming to me, from a bookshop in Primrose Hill.  A remarkably useful evening!   

  • JKB

    Spoiler alert – Obama is snarky with Romney with a comment about bayonets and horses in the military.  Well, apparently he’s behind on his NY Times reading.  Here is a story from October 19th.  I guess the White House staff didn’t think it important enough to put in the President’s daily briefing.  

    Special Forces Soldiers Unveil Statue Honoring Their Service – NYTimes.com 

  • Wolf Howling

    Romney now has the football on the 1 yard line and Obama is on defense.  I am pretty much ready to call this election.

    How important was foreign policy to the Presidential race? At tonight’s foreign policy debate, both Romney and Obama spent their closing arguments talking about the economy with barely a reference to foreign policy. And indeed, the economy insinuated itself into about half the discussions by both Romney and Obama.
    Tonight, one of the two candidates was confident and presidential. The other was President Obama.  Obama has spent the last six months trying to paint Romney as an irresponsible warmonger. Tonight, Romney channelled his inner Gandhi.

    If Romney’s goal was to look presidential and stay pretty much above the fray, he succeeded in spades. Romney went large. He painted in very broad strokes, outlining what would guide his foreign policy as President. He did not get into the weeds pointing out the almost infinite number of things that he could have raised in criticism of Obama foreign policy – and he even stayed away from Libya for the most part. In stark contrast, Obama was aggressive and angry, spending much of his time attacking Romney. He looked desperate. He tried to draw Romney into a brawl. Romney bobbed, weaved and took very few blows.
    The contrast could not have been more stark. At one point early in the debate, a moment that really summed up the debate, Romney told Obama, “attacking me is not an agenda.”   That will be the take away line of the night.
    The one thing that Romney said that was utter music to my ears – there is much more to fighting Islamic terrorism than the military. To paraphrase, we need to engage in the “war of ideas.” Nothing could be more true. Bush started down that road but then gave up. Obama has moved us backwards. The ramifications of losing – or even failing to engage in – the war of ideas are that our grandchildren’s grandchildren will be fighting this scourge long after we are dead.

    At the end of the night, Frank Luntz’s focus group highlighted that the economy was the major issue on everybody’s mind. Good news for Obama – the majority of undecideds in the focus group thought that Obama was stronger on foreign policy. Bad news for Obama – virtually the same majority thought that Romney was the stronger on the economy tonight 

  • http://ravana.wordpress.com Ravana

    Most online polls show that most people think that Obama won the debate. 


  • Mike Devx

    This time I streamed the debate while at work at my desk, which meant I watched a little of it and heard a lot of it.
     I wanted Romney to be strong and aggressive and challenging and he wasn’t, and I thought he got his clock cleaned!  Arrrrgh!

    Then I got home and decided to find a stream of the debate that had them split screen and really WATCH it.  And I watched it again that way.  A glutton for punishment, I know.  But the second viewing – especially with the split screen – was very surprising to me.  Romney was calm and steady, reassuring and clear.  And he never reacted – not for one moment – to Obama’s attacks.  Where Obama seemed merely aggressive on first listen, he seemed petty and taunting the second time around, like a 9th grader trying to goad a despised classmate into a schoolyard fight. 

    On making specific points I think Obama came off well and if you scored points that way, he may have won.  But on overall strategy I think Romney may not only have held his own but actually won in the longer run.

    Romney looked and acted presidential.  Obama acted immature.  His signature attack line comparing the navy to “horses and bayonets”, to reminding Romney about aircraft – these “things that land on carriers” – and submarines – “you know, ships that go underwater” – was so juvenile in retrospect that it’s gotta hurt him in the long run.

    And there’s Gateway Pundit’s (Jim Hoft’s) take:

    Marines still use bayonets
    Horses were used by the military during the Iraq invasion.
    Obama also does not know the difference between a ship and a boat.
    Submarines are boats – not ships.
    I think that’s gonna hurt.  Is it wrong for me to focus on Obama misusing “boats” vs “ships”?  That’s a big deal to military people, and he *is* Commander In Chief, after all.  It’s like pronouncing one type of military man a “corpse-man”.  It comes off badly when you’re trying to sound authoritative.  It even comes off worse when you’re taunting your opponent, trying to goad him.

    And Mitt just sat there, smiling gently, sticking to the high road.  I myself sure wanted him to throw some heavier punches.  But I wasn’t his audience.  Those undecideds and especially those women undecideds were the target.  I hope Mitt Romney understand them and how to do this far better than I do; and that may be why he’s running for President and why I like to comment on blogs instead!

    Romney was presidential again.  In the split screen debate, he was more presidential.  He stayed clear and focused and above the fray that Obama tried to draw him into with schoolyard level taunts.  I think it worked.  We’ll see.

  • http://thoughtyoudneverask.blogspot.com/ zabrina

    I was pleased to see Krauthammer channeling my reaction immediately following the debate, even though we were both evidently in the minority view (that surprised me). I thought Romney won the debate. He appeared presidential, knowledgeable, unruffled, and went large. Obama tried to go large (I think?) but ended up looking very small. He was constantly on the defensive and looked miffed and peevish.

  • janek

    My husband and I tried watching, but he refuses to listen to the one’s voice, so we pretty much watched it on mute. He would turn the volume up for Romney, and I once again heard that slight stutter thing he does when on TV, but I dont’t recall him doing in videos I’ve seen of him on the stump.  I just know it will stop once he is sworn in, in January.       On mute, the one just looked like an angry man.  Must be hard for him to realize his cover is blown, and he’s not adored by the teeming throngs anymore. 

  • Caped Crusader

    I have to sit and laugh at LUNTZ’S DUNCES. What a dismal collection of morons and Floyd R. Turbo types who are SO stupid they cannot make up their minds, and we sit and listen to them as if they have anything profound to say. Whay a dismal commentary on the average voter of this genre.

  • BrianE

    I too wished Romney had been more aggressive, calling out the President’s mis-characterizations to a greater degree than he did.

    I was disaapointed at the level of agreeableness when Romney even agreed that the Obama surge in Afghanistan had worked. I would be curious to know the metric used to declare it successful.

    Romney did say he would call out China’s currency manipulation, and defended it by pointing out the imbalance in our trade. It might not matter that China has already backed off buying government debt, but that might be a clever way to force us to balance our budget (we’ve ticked off the only creditor left). That will only work if we can figure out how to turn off the power to the government printing presses though.

    I understand the strategy to diffuse the ‘he’s just like Bush’ charge and getting into any detail about the Middle East- such as Libya would have been way too complicated to have done any good.

    Since the American public seems to be satisfied with the debates being about as substantive as a Miss America pageant, the only thing missing at this point is the swimsuits and evening gowns which I suspect Obama would have won on points.

  • Charles Martel

    Like janek’s husband, The One’s voice grates on me, so I tracked a drunkblog account of the match while watching my beloved San Francisco Giants hammer the St. Louis Cardinals to take a spot in the 2012 World Series. As jj might say, a damned good night.
    Did Romney win? Who cares? The morons who needed a third debate to decide who gets their vote are something I think we’ve all pretty well factored into our thinking about Romney’s prospects. I just don’t think there are enough morons to resuscitate Obama’s chances. Besides, the darkness and privacy of the voting booth has a remarkable way of clarifying one’s ambivalent thoughts, especially since there are no hectoring PC friends, spouses, unionists, or government parasites looking over one’s shoulder.


    The tone of the debates (all of them) had its own music.

    Obama played Horace Silver’s “Filthy McNasty” and Romney …  Kate Smith’s “God Bless America”.

  • lee

    I haven’t watched the debates (I have no cable and the streaming didn’t work out. Plus, I get up at 4:45 am EDT; 9:00 pm EDT kick-off is awfull late for me.) Anyhow, I am still terrified that Obama might win. I will go out and vote, of course. (FWIW, I live in South Carolina–it’s a pretty good chance our electoral votes will go to Romney.) But some states haven’t done a serious job of purging rolls of dead and ineligible voters. Ohio is full of crazy left-wing nut jobs. (I may be “voting” there, too as I was once a resident and registered to vote in Columbus.) The riduculous reaction to the ads aimed at votor fraud–I gotta figure if you’re getting upset about an ad accusing you of something, you’re probably intended upon doing that of which the ad is accusing you. I m not even sure Marion and Lake Counties in Indiana cleaned up there rolls–and Obama took Indiana in 2008 by a margin of less than the estimated number of fradulent votes. I know the Army of Cons Organized to Recruit Noone no longer has the organizational oomph it had in 2008. But their minions still exist, and had the practice four years ago. They could do it again. I am praying, and praying hard, for the next couple of weeks. I’m not holding out for common sense of people. (Remember, I have the friend in Israel, a dual-national, who seems to be seriously voting for Obama. I’d’ve never pegged her as suicidal.) But I am hoping for a little Divine influence…


    lee, I am also a dual-national BUT…I refrained from voting in the 90’s during US elections while I was in Israel. The irony here is that Israelis living outside of Israel have no such option by mail. Betcha your friend reads and loves Haaretz, the Israeli equivilent of the NYT.

  • lee

    I have another friend who is a dual nation living in Israel who is definitely voting for the Wun. He’s an idiot. Love him, but he is an idiot. And Haaretz is too conservative for him. He left Israel for awhile and was living inFrance, which was such a refreshing change (sarcasm alert here) from the oppression of Israel. He’s back in Israel now. And while I am fairly sure some of the rampant attacks on Jews had something to do with it, he never admitted it. (When I point blank asked about it, he dodged answering. That was my clue. I aksed him: “Did you move back to Israel because of the violence against Jews that’s going on in Paris?” He did not say, “No” or anything, he changed the subject.) 

    On a not entirely unrelated note… I have Orthodox Jewish friends living on the Upper West Side who are voting for, yes, you guessed it, the Wun. I guess the Upper West Side kool-aid is pumped through the plumbing. (When I was living on the UWS, the Orthodox tended to be VERY supportive of Israel. But these kooks just don’t GET it–Obama will selll Israel down the river in a heartbeat, if he has v’halil, gets reelected. There is NO WAY the Wun beleives that Israel really is “our best friend and closest ally.”) 
     Oh, wait! I just remembered two of them used to work for the New York Times! (facepalm.) That explains it–well, at least TWO of them.


    lee – UWS – orthodox? Oy v’voy, are these are the same orthodox that worshipped the golden calf? I am quite familiar with the neighborhood (brother and SIL have lived there since the early 70’s). Not to disparage your friends, I am sure they keep kosher kitchens – it’s the traif in their head that gets me. I am not very familiar with what is called modern orthodox. I know orthodox of the haredi variety and even former haredi – she is  now orthodox (dear friend got divorced and gave up her sheitel and remarried I guess what I consider modern or less orthodox by Israeli standards, although Pesach at her house is no less than 7 hours.

    p.s.  your friend, who lived in Paris for awhile and refused to answer a simply question. next time you see him offer some kosher wine to go with the crow.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    Every single minute of that debate, more money was stolen from the public defense fund and routed into Obama and the Demoncrat party’s bank accounts. That’s all you guys really need to know about the debate.