A Debate For Idiots

Okay kids are we ready for the second debate tonight? I know we’re all supposed to be super-excited about it because of the town hall format and the fact that the questions will be asked entirely by that chupacabra of politics, the undecided voter. Or, as the rest of America calls them: those idiots who still haven’t made up their mind three weeks before the election.

If there is anyone in network news reading this post I would just like to tell you folks that the absolute last people we want to hear from right now are undecided voters. These are people for whom “paper or plastic?” must constitute a dilemma of existential proportions. Pretty much 90% of Americans made up their minds one way or the other a year ago. Of those who didn’t the question was not, Romney or Obama, but rather, Romney or Ron Paul? Romney or Gary Johnson? Obama or Jill Stein?

Here’s what I don’t get: you folks in the media keep telling us that we live in an era of partisan, divided politics, the most partisan era in recent memory, blah blah. And yet every four years you trot out this fantasy of the undecided voter. It’s really bizarre.

Why don’t we chuck the charade and hear from decided voters for a change? People who have been paying attention to their version of the news, be it Breitbart.com, Fox and WingNut Daily or Democracy Now!, Truthout and Alternet? What are you guys afraid of? Let’s hear some Breitbarters ask Obama about his birth certificate or some lefties ask Romney about Sensata? (No, I’m not making a false equivalency between the two issues here. It does seem to me that the left’s issues with Romney are far more reality-based and substantive than the right’s issues with Obama.)

For that matter, let’s have some on the left ask Obama why, exactly, he believes the economy didn’t recover faster. Let’s hear someone on the right ask Romney about his RomneyCare plan and shifting, er I mean evolving position on abortion. I would like to hear the answers to these questions.

I mean, come on, already. Maybe I’m wrong but it just seems like we’d get a far more substantive debate if we took questions from the people who’ve been paying attention versus the people who can’t figure out how to tie their shoelaces in the morning.

23 thoughts on “A Debate For Idiots

  1. Jim says:

    I agree with you SB. Nothing of substance ever gets covered in these debates because either no good questions are asked or the candidates simply don’t answer the questions when responding with their memorized talking points. If you look at the reporting of the debates that have occured most of what you hear is that Obama was not engaged or Biden laughed too much or Romney and Ryan lied. Nothing of actual relevance to the future of the country is covered in the reporting on the debates much less the debates themselves. Of course, if 90-95% of Americans have already decided how they are going to vote, then what is the point of the debates in the first place?

  2. ThresherK says:

    I don’t remember our Beltway Inbreds caring about one debate so much when a Democrat whipped a Republican’s ass as when a Republican merely “did better” than a Democrat this time.
    The framing story already was written. It’s probably already written for tonight.

  3. Alger says:

    There needs to be a constitutional amendment that would replace the words “undecided voters” with “disinterested attention grabbing poopy-heads”. That might do the trick.

  4. Athenae says:

    I like the idea of the Decided Voters Town Hall, mostly because I think they’re likely to be tougher on their own candidates than on the opposition. I would pay cash money to watch the Freepi rip Romney apart. Or watch Greenwald tackle Obama on civil liberties, for that matter.
    We have decided there is something inherently valuable in holding no strong opinions at all, and I don’t think that serves any political viewpoint well.
    A.

  5. mary wilson says:

    BINGO, girl! The only ‘undecideds’ are those whose preacher won’t let them vote for their real choice and threatening if they DARE vote for our President that they, the voters, are headed for HELL.

  6. …mostly because I think they’re likely to be tougher on their own candidates than on the opposition…
    Eggg-zackly. Obama voters would be the first to ask about the drone attacks, for one thing.

  7. MichaelF says:

    I’ve never liked “town hall” debates. The concept is inaccurate insofar as an actual town hall meeting is generally run, and really just another example of United States Mythology if you ask me…Norman Rockwell crossed with a modern television studio.
    In The Selling of the President 1968, Joe McGinniss noted a similar format used by Roger Ailes and Richard Nixon for television advertising — “ordinary” citizens were invited to ask candidate Nixon questions — the process was videotaped, edited, and packaged to look real but it was as contrived as any other type of advertising.
    Even though the show[sic] tonight will be live, I doubt it will be any less contrived, especially since the post-show spin, in the absence of any obvious “gaffe,” will focus on…who had their head down, whose gesticulations were “more presidential,” and other such nonsense…

  8. Twain says:

    Undecided voters do not exist in my opinion. They want to pretend that they are thoughtful and serious but what they actually are is silly.

  9. MapleStreet says:

    Your mention of Jill Stein really hits me. I took one of those web page polls of what your views are and compare them to the candidates. I was a strong link with the Green Party (something like 86 %), a little less with the Justice Party, a little less with dem, and very low with repub.
    I’ve already decided though that in the current system, the likelihood of a 3rd party candidate is very low. So even though I live in NE Missouri, pretty much a given of red state for prez, Senate seat is still up for grabs, no question the House I can’t bring myself to vote 3rd party.

  10. Brooklyn Girl says:

    I mean, come on, already. Maybe I’m wrong but it just seems like we’d get a far more substantive debate if we took questions from the people who’ve been paying attention versus the people who can’t figure out how to tie their shoelaces in the morning.
    Bingo. Why should I give a shit about people who don’t give a shit? If you want to accomplish something, first you have to actually commit yourself to it. If you can’t do that, then get out of the way.

  11. ThinlyVeiled says:

    Very well said. Brava!

  12. megaworthit says:

    Bill Maher described so called undecider voter better and funnier. … Just forgotten exactly what it was. lol

  13. democommie says:

    Dear Southern Beale:
    Paraphrasing Mr. Orwell. There are no debates. There have never been any debates.
    People tell me that they find this sort of politcal Kabuki, “interesting” or that they like to see the candidates having to “think on their feet.”.
    It’s all bullshit. They should just cut to the chase and have Vince McMahon be the next, “moderator”.

  14. spirilis says:

    I went and got me one of the new voter ID Ohio needed so I could vote. It is exacttly like my drivers license except this time I told em I was Shite so that now I’ll have a 50/50 chance with the gestopo.

  15. Andrea says:

    he was very unpresidential- and sowhed to be a petty man, and very much the washington politician. they also said they did not like his twon of voice, and how he dodged questions that were not in his favor, and spent the majority of his answers name dropping. Most undecideds said that they were looking for a reason to vote for him, because the media has been boasting him as the front runner, but that this debate not only disapointed them- but was able to see that romney is much more presidential, and while the title commander and chief seems to fit mc cain better- they felt that romney had better qualifications to lead this country in all other areas, and he debated those issues better- and he didn’t shy away from giving answers to tough questions like they felt mc cain did. .intersting mc cain, where was all this straight talk i’ve been hearing you spout so proudly?

  16. Francisco says:

    The one thing I gather from the GOP Debate was that most Americans are not ready to give aneothr four years to the Republicans to screw up again and yet again.Obama 08

  17. Cailean says:

    Define affordable. I work two jobs. Neither of them prvoedis insurance. I am very healthy, with two visits to a doctor over the past thirty five years for other than an annual checkup.And I paid cash EVERY time, so your claim about uninsureds making ER visits is plain bunk.I’m 54 by the way. I am able to pay my bills easily. However, If I were forced to buy health insurance, I would have financial difficulty. There is NO WAY I’ll be forced out of my home so that the chronically sick will have their health care subsidized by a healthy person like me!May I have a comment from HCFA as to whether you libs would support fines for the obese (Who do more than their fair share in contributing to the health crisis )?

  18. Jaman says:

    As Governor, Mitt Romney played a key role in sropputing comprehensive reform in Massachusetts. He was genuinely committed to expanding coverage. While we did not agree on every detail, we think Romney deserves substantial credit for much of the success of chapter 58.Since becoming a figure on the national Republican stage, however, Romney has become more and more farcical. This is just the latest: . Brian Rosman

  19. Ayob says:

    Of course, the General Court holds the most power in this state when it comes to tioataxn. A governor from a party that holds only a small minority of seats in that legislative body cannot be held accountable for that body’s excesses.I’m no friend of Romney, but to pin any blame on him or give him credit, for that matter for a generalization concerning tax rates, is specious, IMHO.

  20. Joelmac says:

    Most right-wing critics quetison the federal government’s ability to mandate coverage. Start with for the clear explanation of why the federal government can impose a requirement to buy insurance if coverage is affordable.At the state level, a case was filed challenging the statute. The plaintiff’s case was dismissed by the court, as was the appeal.

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