Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The King of Self-Love sings to the Choir (Ava and C.I.)

debate 2

If only everyone could find Barack as amusing as he finds himself.   Last night at Hofstra University, it was a three-way draw in many respects as President Barack Obama, Governor Mitt Romney and CNN correspondent Candy Crowley faced off with truth left bruised and bloody.

As the authors of "TV: Jim Lehrer, notch below child molester," we wanted to applaud Candy Crowley.  The debates -- controlled by a duopoly commission -- are a sham.  So we pointed out, "And when a Jim Lehrer (or Bob Schieffer or Martha Raddatz or Candy Crowley) provides cover to these shams by posing as a journalist, they're doing incredible damage to democracy and, again, they're as damaging as child molesters.  If they don't have any self-respect, their peers should at least hold them accountable.  Until that happens, nothing is going to change."

But there was Crowley talking about how she wasn't going to follow this rule and wasn't going to follow that one and she was going to break the conract's rule against her asking any follow up questions and she was going to be in charge and --    In her 'pre-game' interviews, she certainly talked a good game.

Sadly, she appeared to leave that game in the locker room.

And her post-game (let's not pretend that was a debate) interview was appalling.

In her big moment, she yet again interrupted what could have been a debate between the two candidates to vouch for the veracity of Barack's claim.

Barack:  The day after the attack, governor, I stood in the Rose Garden and I told the American people in the world that we are going to find out exactly what happened. That this was an act of terror and I also said that we're going to hunt down those who committed this crime.  And then a few days later, I was there greeting the caskets coming into Andrews Air Force Base and grieving with the families.

Romney expressed disbelief that Barack stated that on September 12th but Crowley declared that "he did in fact, sir."  And Barack asked her to repeat that "a little louder, Candy" which led her to state, "He -- he did call it an act of terror."

No, he didn't.  At best, he implied it.  And Crowley knew she was wrong almost immediately.  You can see it on her face as the audience applauds and she rushes to quickly add, "It did as well take -- it did as well take two weeks or so for the whole idea there being a riot out there about this tape to come out.  You are correct about that."

Ruth caught that quick amend by Crowley but few others did, especially alleged news outlets.

They also apparently missed Candy Crowley on CNN after the debate trying to justify her nonsense.  So far, we can only find The Daily Caller reporting on that which is surprising because we were embarrassed last night just watching Crowley due faux accountability as she minimized her actions -- we were especially embarrassed because it was clear Crowley knew she'd crossed a line.  There she was telling Anderson Cooper,  "So I knew that the president has said, you know, 'These act of terror won't stand,' or whatever the whole quote was."  Well, if you knew it, you'd know what he said.

And Candy didn't.

Glenn Kessler (Washington Post) explained:

What did Obama say in the Rose Garden a day after the attack in Libya? We covered this previously in our extensive timeline of administration statements on Libya.
“No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for,” Obama said.
But the president did not say “terrorism”— and Romney got tripped up when he repeated the “act of terror” phrasing.
Otherwise, Romney’s broader point is accurate — that it took the administration days to concede that the assault on the U.S. mission in Benghazi was an “act of terrorism” that appears unrelated to initial reports of anger at a video that defamed the prophet Muhammad. By our count, it took 8 days for an administration official to concede that the deaths in Libya was the result of a “terrorist attack.”
More to Romney’s point, Obama continued to resist saying the “t” word, instead repeatedly bringing up the video, even in a speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Sept. 25. On Sept. 26--15 days after the attack-- the White House spokesman felt compelled to assert “it is certainly the case that it is our view as an administration, the President’s view, that it was a terrorist attack.”

What was claimed in the debate?

Barack:  The day after the attack, governor, I stood in the Rose Garden and I told the American people in the world that we are going to find out exactly what happened. That this was an act of terror and I also said that we're going to hunt down those who committed this crime.  And then a few days later, I was there greeting the caskets coming into Andrews Air Force Base and grieving with the families.

He did not label it terrorism.  He spoke of 9-11 from 2001.  He, at best, implied that the September 11, 2012 incident was terrorism.  He did not declare it was one.  And not only did he lie to the United Nation  such thing, he went all over lying -- including on The View.  By contrast, September 12th, the State Dept's Patrick Kennedy was briefing Congress that it was a terrorist attack and had nothing to do with some YouTube video -- or didn't anyone pay attention to his testimony at last week's House Oversight Committee?

Crowley was an embarrassment.

You may have noted we said the audience applauded Candy when she did as Barack ordered her to.

At the start of the debate, Candy Crowley declared, "Each candidate has as much as two minutes to respond to a common question, and there will be a two-minute follow-up. The audience here
in the hall has agreed to be polite and attentive - no cheering or booing or outbursts of any sort."
(We're using the CNN transcript, by the way, which is laid out on one web page and will not require you to click for another page every few paragraphs the way ABC and others offering a transcript do.)   Applause is an outburst.  And it can be distracting.  For example, Ruth caught Crowley admitting at the debate that Romney was correct but most people didn't and that was probably due to the second round of applause that was going on.

Crowley did a lousy job.

She interjected to side with one candidate.  And, worse, the candidate was not telling the truth.  Again, the best and most generous assessment is that Barack implied it was an act of terrorism when he spoke on September 12th.  Having picked sides, she then tried to walk it back but the walk back was largely lost due to the applause.

Attempting to minimize what she'd done in the debate during the post-debate analysis on CNN, she insisted that, "I was again trying to move them on.  They were hung up on this one thing."  Wow.  Hung up on an act of terrorism.

How dare they.  Crowley wanted to go to a question about AK-47s.

What the hell?

Terrorism trumps your pet causes.  Yeah, we called it that.  AK-47s are not as threatening to the world, the entire world, as terrorism nor are they all over the streets of America.  It was wasted time by Crowley who repeatedly went with questions that supplied generic soundbytes and repeatedly refused to allow the issues to be explored.


30 minutes of the debate devoted to Libya wouldn't have been too much..

Crowley was awful.  Oh, she talked a good game before it started, but how quickly she crumbled.

The only one who should be rejoicing about Crowley's performance is Don Gonyea.  We're were streaming NPR, watching CNN and listening to the BBC Radio to get a feel for the general consensus immediately after the debate and we heard a lot of crap but only Don came close to rivaling Candy as he insisted that Mitt Romney looked like he was on the ropes because during the debate he stammered a few times.

Barack's start and stop speaking?  Yes, we are aware of it.  Have been for a long, long time.  In February 2009's "TV: Blustering Boys," we observed:

We watched Monday in full as Barack uh-uh-uhed and spoke in that robotic manner that allows him to find more unnatural pauses than Estelle Parsons and Kim Stanley combined. "He's our Method president!" we quickly gasped while wishing we could have one president this decade capable of normal speech. If he gets any worse, he'll be Sandy Dennis.

But we weren't thinking of Barack while we listened to Don Gonyea explain live on NPR that Romney's stammering at points in the debate showed he was on the ropes.  No, we were thinking of Don Gonyea.  Who was stammering as he said it.  "This-this-this-this" at one point.  Over and over, he stammered.

By Don Gonyea's logic, that meant Don Gonyea was on the ropes.  By Don Gonyea's logic, that meant that Don Gonyea was 'losing' the analysis.

And we had to wonder if Don Gonyea was even aware, as he picked apart Mitt Romney's stammer, that he himself was stammering on air?

Barack stammered as well, for the record.

That was hardly his biggest problem.

"But she works for me!" he insisted at one point in the Libya section about Hillary.  No, Barack, she doesn't.  Hillary Clinton is Secretary of State for the United States of America and takes an oath to serve the people and honor the Constitution.  She takes no oath to the current president, nor does anyone in the Cabinet.  We were appalled to hear Barack make this claim when one of his biggest campaign gurus used to praise us, during the Bully Boy Bush years, for pointing this out when Colin Powell would claim that he served Bully Boy Bush.  You may have, Colin, but you were supposed to be serving the American people.  Presidents come and go.  The country is supposed to remain.

But there was Barack insisting Hillary worked for him.

He never looked more self-absorbed than he did this debate.

And last go round, he looked pretty self-absorbed.

Like last time, Barack seemed to believe his job was to tell the moderator how to do their job.  So last night we got lots of, "Please proceed."  We got Barack repeatedly going over time limits and insisting, as he continued, "Just one second because this is important."

Cutting off Romney to ask, "How much time do we have, Candy?

We had him babbling on about how Romney is supposedly "currently investing in countries -- in companies" while Crowley tried to call time.

Crowley looked so weak with her, "Mr. President, let me --" only to let him continue talking and then come back with, "Mr. President, thank you."

Barack wanted to run the debate and she let him.  Maybe we should have told Barack the media was the president for the last four years?  He only ever wants to do a job if he doesn't have it.  If he thought someone else was president, he might have actually rolled his sleeves up and got to work on the economy -- remember how many times he promised that 'now' he was going to focus on the economy?  Never did though.

A friend with a column in a daily paper argued Barack's most laughable line was when he said, in reply to a man who declared he was struggling economically, that "a lot of us are."  Us?

Yeah, that was cute.  The same way he trotted out dead grandma yet again.  It's amazing how she was hidden away until her death and how, until her death, she was just a "typical" White person who was racist but today, in death, she's this model for Barack.

But what stood out to us was his claim that "we are also a nation of laws."

Bradley Manning has been imprisoned for how long now?  Bradley Manning was pronounced guilty by Barack Obama who now wants to claim "we are also a nation of laws"?

We remember all the garbage about the K-mart lecturer being a "constitutional professor" and how great that would be to have in the White House.  But it didn't work out that way.  Despite his alleged opposition as a senator to the Patriot Act, he's refused to allow it to sunset.  He's declared he -- a, any -- president has the right to kill any American they want -- of course, not in hand-to-hand combat because that might mess up his lovely, manicured nails.  But via drone or team of assassins, any American can be killed on the order of the president of the United States and this is not subject to court review -- according to the 'constitutional professor.'

And there was Barack asserting "we are also a nation of laws."

As he tried to spin -- with Candy Crowley's help -- his way away from the lies he'd repeatedly told for days after September 11, 2012 about YouTube videos, protests and other nonsense, Barack had the nerve to not just deny what he did but to claim, "That's not what I do as president, that's not what I do as Commander in Chief."

As we pointed out a second ago, what he does as Commander in Chief is pronounce Bradley Manning guilty when Bradley's had no trial.  Instead of asking some dumb ass question about AK-47s, the little idiot should have been asking about Bradley Manning.  Guns are already in society.  The real threat is a government that believes they can ignore the Constitutional right to a speedy and fair trail.   That's your danger.

And that's what was so insulting about the questions.  They were all uniformly stupid.  We kept waiting for, "How will you use your reign as Miss America to help others less fortunate?"  And maybe the dumbed down presidency deserves dumbed down questions?

But those questions were appalling.  And that's not just a reflection on the people asking them but also on Candy Crowley who picked which ones would be asked.

And in the end, they didn't matter at all because, no matter what was asked, it was talk about what you want.

Which is how one question found Barack babbling away about how "we haven't had a chance to talk about education much, but I think" and on and on he went about colleges and governors and job training.  Crowley would interrupt him repeatedly every lit bit to pretend she was about to move along but he'd tell her "just one second" and continue.  "Because -- because," he said stammering (in one of many moments Don Gonyea missed), "this is important.  This is part of the choice in this election.  Teachers was important to growing our economy, Governor Romney said that doesn't grow our economy.'  Finally, Crowley did cut him off noting, "The question, Mr. President, was guns here, so I need to move us along."

It's worth pointing out she wasn't so kind to Romney.  With him, she was curt.  Such as when Barack was talking over him and Romney stated, "Mr. President, let me finish."  Crowley jumped in with, "Governor Romney, you can make it short.  See all these people? They've been waiting for you.  Make it short."  No need to wonder whose side the alleged moderator was on.

Regardless, the idiotic questions didn't matter in the end because the response session was less about answers and more of a free-style mash-up. 

BBC had a gas bag who felt a key moment was when Romney asked a woman her name.  He found that so hysterical and 'telling.'  We'd recommend Q-Tips and ear wax removal for the jolly Brit.  Here's the section, he found so damning of Mitt Romney.

ROMNEY: Is it Loraina?

QUESTION: Lorraine.

ROMNEY: Lorraine?

QUESTION: Yes, Lorraine.

ROMNEY: Lorraine.

QUESTION: How you doing?

ROMNEY: Good, thanks.

He found it hilarious that Romney asked her name twice.  He felt that anyone should have known, from Candy Crowley's introduction, that the woman's name was Lorraine.

Well if that made Romney stupid, what did it say about Barack who went after Romney?   And first called her "Lorranna."  If the BBC gas bag thought Mitt should have gotten it, then certainly after Crowley and Mitt, Barack should have known the woman's name.  The CNN transcript probably has multiple errors.  One we caught is "Hi Carey."  No, he said, "Hi, Care."  And appeared surprised when the one asking was a man prompting him to then state, "I'm sorry. What's your name?"

Both times he struggled with the name of another person.  Maybe the BBC gas bag could have found time for that -- if he'd cleaned his ears first, of course.

Who won the debate?

The clear loser was an informed public.

We are sure there are well informed undecideds.  But the ones who made it to the microphone with questions (picked by Candy) did not represent the basis for an informed discussion.  We have, in fact, heard more probing questions asked of pageant contestants.

The clear winner?

Some are saying it's Barack.  We don't see how.

He was abrupt and rude.  'So was Mitt Romney!'  Maybe Romney was as much as Barack.  (It seemed to us like Barack was more so.)  But Romney's not been hailed as The One.  While some Dems will cheer, not all will (we aren't).  More importantly swing voters and undecideds had little to grab onto.

If you're undecided at this point, presumably, the last four years have not pleased you.  And that's why we see Barack as the loser.  Last night, he yet again had a chance to present a vision or even a glimpse of four-more-years of Barack.  He never did.  He runs from his actual record and he won't talk about the future.

That left him with nothing but cheap shots.  Like that last one at the end of the debate when he was given the last word and chose to bring up Mitt Romney's 47% remarks.  If you wanted to explore that, you bring it up in an exchange.  If you're a little, scared kid, you wait until the last minute, blurt it out and high tail it off stage. 

That parting image?  Not striking us as presidential.

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