Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Republican Debate on MSNBC

Chris Matthews

This is the first time I have actually watched one of the debates on TV. The main reason I watched this one was the hubbub about Chris Matthews being a moderator. Many had predicted that Matthews could not be fair and impartial because he is a liberal Democrat, and more specifically, he has made recent public statements blasting the "criminality" of the Bush administration and their "efforts to silence" him.

All in all, I think the questions from Matthews and Maria Bartiromo weren't that bad. The main exception was when Matthews made an obvious effort to make Fred Thompson look bad by asking him who the Prime Minister of Canada was. Thompson answered the question without blinking, making Matthews look bad instead.(Hey, Chris-Who is the Prime Minister of Denmark- You're a reporter-You should know, right?)

My main complaint was the post-debate coverage, specifically when Matthews was engaged in an analysis of the candidates performances with his liberal colleagues. They were basically sneering at the candidates, which is their speciality. It was akin to watching the "always fair and balanced" Keith Olbermann tearing apart Republicans with his smug liberal friends on "Countdown".

One would hope that most viewers could watch political coverage on any particular network and see the obvious bias that passes for reporting these days. Unfortunately, many can't, which is why the news media gets away with so many of their outrages.

But back to the debates. It was just a few months back when the Democratic candidates refused en masse to appear in a debate hosted by the "evil" Fox News network, preferring instead to go before friendlier groups with moderators like the aforementioned Keith Olbermann throwing up such softballs as this: "So, if you are elected, will it be hard for you in your first week in office knowing that everybody is trying to take your job away?". (I am paraphrasing.) Every candidate got a chance to knock that one out of the park, eating up precious debate time in the process.) Yet, the Republicans agreed to take questions from the likes of Chris Matthews. To be accurate, most of the Republican candidates shied away from a recent black issues forum hosted by liberal talk show host Tavis Smiley, who naturally publicly condemned the missing candidates at the start of the debate.

As for the candidates themselves: I came away thinking that maybe the two best were Duncan Hunter and Mike Huckabee. Unfortunately, neither has much of a chance. I thought Rudy did alright and did nothing to hurt his front-runner status. Mitt Romney was prepared, but still comes across as a polished guy who knows exactly what he is going to say (scripted perhaps?) He made one significant gaffe when he referred to consulting with his lawyers before taking any military action against Iran. Fred Thompson seemed initially a bit uncomfortable and overall, lethargic, but he is not a guy to pound the podium as we know. I like Tom Tancredo, but he showed that he is pretty much a one-trick pony (illegal immigration). Every time he spoke, he came back to that theme. I agree with his stance, but I need to hear more of his views. The one guy who I wish would go away was Ron Paul, the libertarian. He gives me the impression that he is one bad day away from climbing to the top of a tower with a high-powered rifle.

So, to be honest, I am still undecided who I would vote for in the primary. I do know that whoever gets the nomination will have my vote, with the possible exception of Ron Paul. No, on second thought, even Paul has my vote over Hillary or any of the other Democrats. Just think of it: President Paul on top of the White House with a high-powered rifle after a bad day in the Oval Office. Wouldn't that be bizarre? Almost as bizarre as President (Bill) Clinton having sex with....

Oh never mind!


Anonymous said...

Red Phillips says...

"The one guy who I wish would go away was Ron Paul, the libertarian. He gives me the impression that he is one bad day away from climbing to the top of a tower with a high-powered rifle."

Mr. Fouse, if you wish Ron Paul would go away then fine, but that remark is not intelligent analysis. It is a childish slur.

The tendency to equate “out of the mainstream" political ideas with psychopathology is dangerous in the extreme. I'm sure you can understand why.

Please try to elevate your analysis.

Gary Fouse said...

Mr Phillips,

That comment that you object to was neither intelligent analysis nor a childish slur. It was an attempt at humor, which is quite common in political commentary and a style I use with certain topics. I was not talking about his political opinions, rather his debating style. I don't see how it is "dangerous in the extreme". Do you want to cry about our politicians all the time, or occasionally laugh at them?

You need to lighten up.