First, the debate.
Most Democrats will claim Biden won and most Republicans will say Palin won, but it isn’ t the truth.
I’ll give the first 15 minutes to Biden and call the rest a tie. Biden performed as I would expect someone with 35 years of experience debating in the senate to perform – well. Palin was painful to watch during the first 15 minutes and then, apparenly finding her stride, went toe to toe with Biden; quite an accomplishment for someone with virtually no debating experience.
Now, the venue.
I agreed to take this gig as a favor to a friend. I had certain preconceived notions about what it would be like, but, sadly, even those low expectations were not met.
The KOIN folks told me it would be a non-partisan event. If you really wanted a non partisan event you wouldn’t hold it in the most liberal neigborhood in Portland, so, as I say, I had certain expectations. When I arrived at the event I noticed the only organization with a table set up was the Bus Project. So much for even the facade of non-partisanship.
The crowd was exactly what I expected, only more so. Booing everything Palin said and mocking every colloquialism she uttered. It was like being in a room full of petulant, spoiled three year olds who had overheard their parents swearing one too many times. One liberal bloger shouted profanity throughout the event and, in spite of KOIN assurances at the beginning of the event that this would not be tolerated from the crowd, in spite of the fact that there were a half dozen KOIN people within six feet, he was never reprimanded – until I popped off at him.
I suppose the thing I detest most about the Hawthorne types is that they think they are smart, despite all evidence to the contrary. Look folks, if you’re over thirty, living in Portland, and you make barely more than minimum wage, it’s not because of Bush or “the corporations,” it’s because you’re not very bright, have made poor life decisions and are taking no action to correct, are a PhD candidate or are in the military. I am fairly confident in saying there were no PhD candidates in the audience and I sure as heck didn’t see any uniforms.
The crowd further demonstrated its tolerance and maturity in the post debate comment interviews. A woman got up and said she really couldn’t comment on the debate because of all the booing every time Sarah Palin spoke and the remaining crowd, as though rehearsed in advanced, all derisively boo-hooed and waaaaahhh’d in unison.
Worst of all the @#$%% food and drink lines were a mile long, only one of three windows being staffed.
Thumbs down to KOIN, thumbs down to the crowd and thumbs down to the Baghdad.
On a final note, I want to thank the woman from Blue Oregon who helped me find the WIFI button on the laptop I borrowed. I should know better by now than to rely on equipment I have never used before.