Benny's World

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Missing the Point about Presidential Debates

Taylor Marsh continues to beat the drum for Clinton's candidacy, which in my mind, is OK, except she refuses to admit that Clinton is her candidate. Instead, she tries to "report" or "analyze"what the perceptions are from the MSM and MSB's. She should come clean about her preferences and be done with it. It's clear she dislikes Obama and Edwards because neither one of their campaigns will give her what she believes is due to her: an online interview. Of course, Clinton hasn't either, but they gave her Joe Wilson, so that works for her.

But that is not my point in this post. Taylor made a big blunder that I am more than willing as a JRE supporter to school anyone about. First, Taylor posted a link to a person who was also in the audience of the Las Vegas debate, and she is an Obama supporter. Taylor implies the post is by someone who is a sour grapes supporter of Edwards.

This particular CJ made it clear that the DNC in Nevada is different from most states: it is clunky and rowdy, less finessed about issues, and more controlled by the Reids, in which they support boxing matches. And it is downright corrupt. Fits in with the Clintons.

In my view, CJ reported the Clinton campaign bought more tickets for anyone who would appear as a supporter, and treated the event almost the same as a boxing event in that they purposely booed Obama and Edwards for making distinctions in their positions with her. Hissing at JRE and calling him a trial lawyer? Wasn't Clinton a trial lawyer too? If they sounded a bit negative, they were, but it's because Madame Clinton's lack of decision making without polls and planting people to posit questions needs to be up and front. The MSM has given her a free pass because she is a woman, until 2 weeks ago.

Big deal. If the Madame is in the kitchen and is comfortable with it as she says, then she needs to take the heat. She's not very good at it.

The second part of Taylor's blunder, which is implicit in what I'm writing, but now I'll be more transparent about, is that a Presidential debate is not supposed to be a Harkin Steak Fry or J-J Dinner event. The latter are both are fundraisers. Maybe the Nevadans and CNN alike saw the J-J dinner in Iowa as boxing event (and it did appear staged in that arrangement), but they displayed no class nor manners. A Presidential debate is to discuss and debate the issues, not just rah-rah or boo the candidates. It is more formal. It is designed whereby there are supposed to debate about topics, and especially those pertaining to being president and about leadership. No one boos or applauds them. If Taylor, who is supposed to be a veteran blogger doesn't understand this distinction, then she is less informed and is no different from anyone who attends an Oakland Raiders football game.

Let me restate: I like Taylor and I think she is a good radio talk show person, but I think she is out of her element at the moment because of her fear of not getting blog ads to support her blog and her show. Thus, she is trying to appear like Bill Maher, who admits he won't endorse anyone, but he says Edwards has the best chance to win the general election. He's transparent. Taylor is not, just like Clinton isn't either.

Now, between CNN and the Clinton supporters, they took the debate to a different level. Like the CJ reporter at the event, to me, the debate showed a lack of manners for a big TV audience. It's one thing to applaud something you agree with, but probably that shouldn't have been allowed either in the interest of time for the candidates. And this event was not supposed to be like Yearly Kos either. There were boos there, but they were directed at the candidate personally, not at the candidate who pointed out a vote difference from another candidate. Moreover, that debate was not on national TV either. It was on Upstream, which many voters don't even know about. I'm not putting down Upstream; it has been helpful to doing outreach to the blog sphere, but frankly, I know that I'm still in the minority who gets more information over the Net than I do on national TV.

No one will dispute that Edwards was caught off guard by the boos and he decided to gauge the reaction a bit more to understand it. He's a professional trial lawyer by training, as well as a former Senator. He did back off. But he was right to do so. He needed to see where things were going and why this debate was not being treated in the same circumstances as other ones were. Of course, it didn't help that he got less time than Clinton and Obama, but his position on the stage made that clear already how he would be treated. He did his best under the circumstances, and it was unfortunate, considering more viewers watched that debate than the one where he shined in Philadelphia.

To his credit Obama did step up and say "no no no", meaning "hear me out" when he pointed out differences between his views and Clinton's as well and got booed as well.

My gut tells me that the majority of the audience did not treat the event with respect and it was unfortunate that they were not given better ground rules. I suspect nearly all the candidates were not told in advance that this would be treated like a boxing match, except Clinton. She got her duckies out there, wading around in the marshes, if one will pardon the pun here.

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Good Music about the New Radicals:John Edwards

He's a new radical to take on the drug and pharma interests. And can win.

See Sarah Lane's diary from the Edwards Evening News at Kos.

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Friday Blog Spotlight II

Three weeks ago, I started a series called Friday Blog Spotlight. While the intention was to do this every couple of weeks, I did say I would try to do it twice a month. The time has come to shine the spotlight on another blog from BW's blogroll.

Drumroll: the Friday spotlight is on Anonymoses.

Anonymoses and I became acquainted nearly a couple of years ago, not too long after I discovered Chancelucky. Known as Mr. Wonderous to many of us, he was one of the founders of the blog, Idea Consultants. I am honored to be asked to be a contributor to that blog and still contribute as I wish, albeit it has been a long while since I have made a decent post there.

Mr. Wonderous and I have a few things sort of in common. First, he is a graduate of Harvard. I worked at Harvard for 8 years. Thus, we were residents of the Bay State for a time, and both enjoyed discussing the North Shore when we have chatted on JRE's site.

Another thing we have in common is that Dave lives in the South and I am originally from a state that is a cross between the South and West, and I can understand southern mores very well.

We also both appreciate Harry Taylor, who stood up to Bush in 2005 and became an beacon of hope for many of us. BW readers may recall Harry Taylor spoke out how our government is becoming less trustworthy and that we were more than mislead about Iraq. Now he is running for Congress in the 9th District.

Mr. Wonderous has a twisted sense of humor like me, except that he can write and type faster than I can when and while he uses that wit. I can speak it faster or chat with it, but he can write it better on his site using music, poetry, news articles, and art. I don't have the capacity to do that kind of blogging, so I don't give away my wit on my own blog; tend to do it more in debates on the DU or the Daily Kos.

Mr. Wonderous also keeps company with bloggers I admire very much: Iddybud, Bora, Ed Cone, The Blogsboro Network's Billy the Blogging Poet and in general, the Tarheel Taverners. But this is where the big difference is between me, Mr. Wonderous, and those Tarheel Taverners: they are all artists and very gifted in their own right. I am gratified to have my site be linked to some of their blogs and they mention me occasionally when I've commented on theirs with something new. Unlike many of them, I don't require anyone to click my site for revenue, whereas many of them could use and deserve the revenue for their talents.

What I like about Anonymoses Hyperlincoln III blog has very much to do what I like about him personally: the site is entrepreneurial, but highly artistic. Look at his profile picture. To me, it reminds me of a sketch that Alfred Hitchcock used to have on his weekly show. Classic. The man can do a photoshop like a pro, and at times, his abstracts, similar to Andy Warhol's work, are eye-candy for the modern art lover like me.

He often posts commentary from the bigger picture perspective, which is what I also admire in someone.

But lastly, I like his taste in music too. We (and that includes Iddybud as the two are very close friends) seem to enjoy the same artists, some of them lesser known folkies.

And yes, he is a John Edwards supporter. I hope to meet him in person at Edwards 2009 Bloggers' Ball and dance with him.

Check out Anonymoses' blog. He's a treat to read. The eclectic kind of fun.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Jane Smiley Seems to Channel Benny

In her pretend interview with Madame Clinton. I think I would awake feeling the same way.

Good post by Smiley at HuffPo.

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JRE's New Ad on TV

Looks like it is the second most important issue, after Iraq, for those in the midwest.

Should generate some buzz with the MSM.

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Monday, November 12, 2007

Saluting our Vets

John Kerry

Jim Webb

Chris Dodd

Thank you all for your continued service to our country and for fighting to obtain improvements for caring for our Vets.

John Edwards in a speech in NH today said he was planning to offer $400 million for more counselors and mental health professionals to help vets be able to seek counseling outside of the VA in order to deal with PTSD. The waiting list is too long as it is.

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Sunday, November 11, 2007

John Edwards: Our Future Number 44

I'll comment later, but this speech by JRE at the JJ Dinner in Iowa says it all.

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