Thursday, April 17, 2008

the obama-clinton debate last night

Jeepers, there's a lot of hand-wringing out there. Will Bunch of the Philadelphia Daily News said Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos "disgraced [the] profession of journalism" because their general line of questioning wasn't quite in-line with what's on Bunch's mind. And Greg Mitchell of the Huffington Post agrees.

Well and well. A few thoughts:

1. There is too much on-the-surface stuff being discussed in this campaign, and much of it -- from Obama's pastor to Hillary's having to dodge bullets that were never fired, etc. -- has already been discussed, ad infinitum. Bunch is right: Enough is enough

2. That said, both candidates have addressed some of the issues near and dear to liberal voters -- from rising gas prices to the mortgage crisis to health care to withdrawal from Iraq -- quite often as well. Last I checked, Mr. Bunch, there's nothing wrong with questioning the candidates on matters outside the interests of comfortable, well-to-do liberal journalists whose own worldview is no less narrow than that of those monsters on right-wing talk radio. You may not realize it, Mr. Bunch, both "those people" will be voting, too.

3. Once more, this is why I recommend that people who are serious about this campaign -- and it is a serious campaign -- should do more to inform themselves than watch television or give serious consideration to what some knee-jerk A-hole like Kanye West ever has to say on the subject.

4. It can't be said enough, but here it is: MTV's long-standing campaign to "Rock the Vote" is stupid, and any statistic that shows very few registered voters show up at the polls is actually a good thing. Why? Because if you don't pay attention -- even a little, or at least enough to not be swayed by some last-minute campaign commerical -- I'd much rather you stay home on Election Day. Please.

CLARIFICATION: The other night, a friend informed me she had first registered to vote as a result of MTV's "Rock the Vote," saying it was worthwhile for her for having at least triggered an interest. In hindsight, I probably should have noted that "Rock the Vote" serves a purpose as an introduction, though I still think it short-changes young people because the responsibility of becoming an informed (and responsible) voter ultimately lies with that voter -- and in ways that go beyond sound bites or The Daily Show.

1 comment:

Diaz said...

Can you even call that a "debate"? I can't believe I even had to hear Obama explain someone question his patriotism because he doesn't wear a stupid American flag pin. Fuck those stupid pins!! Keep in mind that Bush, Cheney, and their goons always have their little pins on and they can all go to hell.

It would have been really refreshing if both of the candidiates would have answered all of those trivial questions with something like "Well, we are hear to give the voters of PEnnsylvania/USA a chance to hear our take on issues that are specific to them, so I don't want to waste their time discussing flag pins or a trip to Bosnia 15 years ago"