Friday, October 3, 2008

About Last Night - The VP Debate

I’m back! And I’m ready to talk about last night – the most watched debate ever. Yes I’m talking about the VP debate with Sen. Joe Biden and Sarah Palin. Let me get a few things off my chest:

I’m sick of some pundits declaring the victory for Palin when they were the very ones who set the bar so low for her in light of the trainwreck TV that came in the form of interviews between her and Charlie Gibson and later (more twilight zone) with Katie Couric.

I believed she was going to do well – as well as she could. She was sequestered to cram everything she could about foreign policy, economy, Iraq, etc, and talk to any former or present student, cramming can get you by.

But let me start with the debate: What was up with Palin asking Biden if she could call him “Joe” during the introduction? I thought to myself “no.” I felt like Joe should have been like Luda in one of his raps and say, “stand back, you don’t know me like that.” Palin didn’t know Biden but from her TV and meeting someone for the first time (at a debate no less) is not the time to drop formalities especially when you’re not his colleague. I’m no Emily Post, but a little etiquette lesson won’t hurt.

About etiquette for debates: Seriously, what was up with the winks? There’s something in Scripture not to trust someone with a wink. Also, could she could she at least act presidential and stop with the “betcha,” “doggone,” “darn right,” “Joe Six pack,” “there you go again” (straight out of Reagan’s books, thus inauthentic). I will say this: Palin just added more material for Saturday Night Life for spoofs.

Anyway, on to the actual debate: I had some texting (more than usual) moments with a relative about my impression at odd times of the sparring between the candidates and let me you in on them verbadom:

AAW: Palin needs 2 answer d question on deregulation.
(No response yet, so I text another observation)

AAW: What does energy have to do with mortgage? (That was my frustration after Palin kept on bringing up energy for any question).

Relative: That’s her game and people are going 2 talk it 2. When she can’t answer a question, she goes 2 energy.

AAW: She is not answering d questions. And why is Gwen (Iffil, the moderator) tipping d hand by asking Joe d tough questions first? (I noticed this because Palin will piggy back on something Joe said and the names of some foreign country members she clearly didn’t know).

Relative: I’m hip 2 her game. Don’t know what Gwen’s problem is. (Full disclosure here: We love Gwen Iffil and we were talking about our admiration for her before the debate and it didn’t stop afterwards).

AAW: Could she (Palin) pronounce “nuclear” right? And she just repeats nuclear without saying anything of substance. (This relates to the question on Iran and nukes).
(Got a quick call because the relative didn’t catch that – how she pronounces “nuclear” like Dubya as “nuculear.” Then the relative had to hang up to concentrate on the debate).

AAW: I hate this debate. (I text this statement a couple of minutes later after my frustration with circling around the issues).

Relative: Can’t wait 4 debate 2 be over 2 hear the people (pundits) speak. Lord, I hope they won’t disappoint me. PALIN IS SCARY! She is definitely having problems. (This was after an hour into the debate).

Relative: Better speak for people in WASilla Ist. (I guess the relative was talking about her folksy manner).

Relative: My cable just shut down. (Of all the ill-opportune times) Waiting 4 it 2 come back on.

AAW: If she says oil and gas one more time, I’m gonna scream! Alaska only produces 3.5 percent of oil.

Relative: Ditto

Relative: Tell me when it’s over. Problem with svc provider (Gosh Comcast!).

Well the aforementioned was the exchange and you notice one person’s name not in on the text? Joe Biden! He was amazing! And I thought he was so restraint not to go on the attack as his normal “happy warrior” style. But he did say John McCain was no “maverick” on issues that concern the middle class. Also, Biden called McCain’s health care plan, which will give you $5K credit in place of most folks $12K plan and tax them afterwards the “ultimate bridge to nowhere.” (Now that’s the Biden I know).

One more thing: I thought the poignant moment of the debate was when Palin kept on talking about herself as a mother especially as one of a special needs child. Then giving shoutouts to single moms that Joe Biden has had enough. Biden said he might not be a mother but he definitely understood what it meant to be a single parent of kids alone (I think most Americans knew what he meant after the tragedy that befell his family) and one (the son on his way to Iraq) you didn’t know was going to make it. He got choked up while still trying to remain composed by saying he understands the working class families. Take it from me Biden, as a viewer who was also raised by single father at one time in her life, I understand.

So what is my verdict about last night? Like most polling results, I give the edge by a huge mile to Biden. Even Palin kept saying to Biden after the relief of the debate been over these words: “Thank you, thank you very much.” Yeah Palin thank him for being so deferential to you because you knew if you weren’t so new on the national scene and/or your gender, Biden the attack dog would have chewed you out.

Tags: VP Debate, Joe Biden, Sarah Palin