Post Debate Observations

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.

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    Neither was a clear winner but I gained a lot of new respect for both of them.

    • dean

      I agree with the Dude. Both did well for themselves. But bottom liine, I did not see Palin as president material, at least not at this stage of her career.

      Fortunately for her she may have salvaged her future, and though I don’t like her politics, I’m happy for her.

      As for Tim, its interesting that you denigrate an entire neighborhood (“Hawthorne types”) of people because some of them may or may “think they are smart.” What, are they supposed to think they are dumb? Lighten up and stop over generalizing.

  • Chris

    LOL. I thought about going but had imagined that it would turn out exactly as you described. Thanks for “taking one for the team”.

    I thought it was a good debate, and hopefully the McCain camp can now look forward from those interviews that Palin did. I thought she was attacked simply for being candid. She wasnt aware of the world of gotcha “yellow” journalism. By all appearances, it looks like she has learned her lesson.

  • Jerry

    Good analysis Tim. Thanks. Dead on about the hawthorne types. But remember, they will be rich once the new Oregon minimum wage kicks in this January.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Ok, so Joe did not make a self deprecating joke about Ifill being in a wheelchair just prior to the debate. I honestly thought he would do this as an ice breaker because I thought he might fear that if Palin had the any edge on him it would be in the – likeability I’m not a politician – factor.

    Palin was totally off stride in the first 10 minutes. I frankly think that sometimes she can overdo it on the folksy stuff. In the end though she did well. Right now her challenge is to convince people that if McCain is elected the kind of BS that is going on in Washington will change. People are mad as hell about this and right now whoever can convince the populace that will change will win. She did not have to convince anyone she could be president, she is not running for that office, and few people vote for a candidate because they think his VP running mate will be taking over a week after election.

    Biden was better than expected. He time limited his answers and was aggressive without being condescending, a major flaw of his when dealing with women. I have watched Biden for years, starting with his handling of Bork. In fact at the time I was fairly left wing, Biden made me have respect for what I thought at the time was my side. Judge Bork made me think about changing sides. When I read his book, The Tempting of America I finally joined the dark side. I guess I can ramble just like Biden. Anyway, this was one of his best performances.

    As for Gaffs, I did have to say I felt Biden made one. It wouldn’t have been a big deal except he went on and on and on about it. Joe…. Article One? Are you kidding me? Again, not a big deal if mentioned in passing, but to go on and on in a prepared statement chastising someone for not getting the constitution right, and you get it wrong yourself? Gaff time baby, Palin would have been hung out to dry on that one if it had been hers.

    • Charlie L


      In re Biden making a GAFFE.

      Perhaps you should read THE WHOLE CONSTITUTION, rather than just the section headings.

      The role of the V.P. is in Section 3 of ARTICLE ONE of the Constitution (paragraph 4 if you can’t find it), just as Biden stated last night. Why? Because it is talking about THE SENATE, and Article I is where that is discussed. How logical.

      But don’t let the facts stand in your way.

    • Charlie L


      The correct response is…

      Wow, Charlie, I was SOOO friggin’ wrong. Can’t believe I screwed that up.

      • Anonymous

        Article One, The Legislative Branch; Section Three, The Senate; paragraph 4: “The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate…”

        This is the section Biden was citing as the authority for the Vice President being part of the Executive branch.

        But don’t let the facts stand in your way.

        Rupert: 1
        Charlie L: -2 (-1 for being completely wrong, and -1 for gloating about it)

        • Charlie L

          I guess the problem here is, again, one of interpretation, rather than facts.

          Rupert wishes to claim that Biden made a “gaffe” because he said “The idea he doesn’t realize that Article I of the Constitution defines the role of the vice president of the United States, that’s the Executive Branch. He works in the Executive Branch. He should understand that. Everyone should understand that.”

          I guess “Rupert” wishes to interpret the words “…that’s the Executive Branch” to refer to Article I, while I interpret them to refer to “the role of the vice president of the United States.”

          But, anybody who can honestly tell me that they believe that the Vice President of the United States works anywhere but the Executive Branch, I really can’t waste any more energy on, because that’s totally about making up your own reality to suit your desires. I mean REALLY. Come on. What’s next? SCOTUS are in the Janitorial Department because they have to clean up all the messes?

          • Anonymous

            No interpretation involved. Biden stated that article I of the constitution defined the Vice President as a member of the Executive branch. Biden was wrong.

          • Charlie L

            THese are Senator Biden’s EXACT words:

            “The idea he doesn’t realize that Article I of the Constitution defines the role of the vice president of the United States, that’s the Executive Branch. He works in the Executive Branch. He should understand that. Everyone should understand that.”

            Please note the comma, between “United States” and “that’s.” I am not a grammarian, but I believe the clause that follows would refer to the immediately preceeding subject, not the previous one.

            So, Senator biden was saying that “the Executive Branch” is THE ROLE OF THE VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. Not that Article I of the Constitution is the Executive Branch.

            You really are stretching now.

          • Anonymous

            Reality has no place in your world, does it?

          • Charlie L

            Joe Biden knows more about the U.S. Constitution than probably all but 100 people in the world.

            Why do you think YOU know so much more?

            Did I parse the grammer of his words incorrectly?

  • Coyote

    I have to disagree with you. While you think that Biden sounded solid, he was sounding solid WHILE MAKING THINGS UP.

    And…And looking at it purely from a political “win-loss” standpoint there is no question that Palin won.

    Biden said he ate at “Katie’s” restaurant recently and talked to patrons. Guess what? Katie’s has been CLOSED for TEN YEARS.


    So just where WERE you eating Joe?

    He also screwed up while talking about the Afghanistan and Iraq budgets. He was off by 2000%.

    Now I ask you Tim. What would happen to you at work if you were off by 2000%? We all know that we would at least get called into the bosses office, or if a Republican had been that far off it would be all over the news right now.

    Rest easy my friend. The polls will show that Palin won and gave McCain a little bit of breathing room.

    But he needs to take this thing home.

    • Tim Lyman

      Coyote –

      You are absolutely right about Biden making stuff up and being off on the Iraq and Afghanistan budgets. Unfortunately, hardly any of the viewers realized this and it will, of course, go unreported in the media.

      My grading was based solely on style and had nothing to do with substance or facts. Lame, I know, but this is how most viewers will judge the debate and, alas, how many voters decide who to vote for. How else do you explain the popularity of Obama? I was not doing a substantitive analysis, but rating a popularity contest.

      • dean

        Rupert becomes ever more fascinating. Used to be left winger, now a right winger. Try moderate next time. Its a reasonable prospect.

        Facts schmacts. They both got a few facts wrong, but that’s not a killer in a fast moving debate. What matters, as what mattered in the Obama-McCain debate, is what the few remaing fence sitters thought. The early polls suggest they thought both did well enough, but Biden did better, particularly on teh readiness for the office question. Either way, from this point forward the 2 VPs won’t matter much. Palin did well enough to not drag McCain down any further, and Biden did not say anything stupid.

        On to Ohio, where if this thing stays close, the race will be decided.

        • Crawdude

          Its not facts that pols get wrong, its statistics that are manipulated.

          A fact is just that a fact, a truth, its concrete. You either tell the truth or you tell a lie.

          Now a statistic, that can be made to look anyway you want it.

          Has the Afghanistan war cost only been 2-3 months worth of Iraq? Possibly, if you cherry pick the weeks that you want to use making a month. If you cherry pick what costs you consider military e.g. combat funds as opposed to operating funds…….you get the drift. Was that a lie persay, No, just a different way of looking at it.

          Did Obama vote to raise taxes 94 times? …..Yes, if you want to lump every major bill that had a minor increase in it the he voted for because of the major issue. You would also need to could the bills that would have made permanent certain tax cuts (which can be considered support of an increase, lol!) but he voted against because of the major issues. Did he vote 94 times for tax increases……..yeah, if you cherry pick those things from the major bills he’s voted on…………..was it a lie? No, just a different way of thinking about things.

          She did well enough to solidify the people leaning GOP but had questions about her. She did bring any undecided their way.
          Biden did good enough to solidify the people leaning DNC but not enough to bring any undecideds.

          We may see a bit of a bump for the GOP, only because I believe there were still a larger chunk of fence sitters on the GOP side than there was on the DNC side. Maybe 1-2 points in certain close states, thats about it.

          People don’t vote for vice president, in the end they vote for the President.

          • Charlie L

            Well, normally I don’t let the Vice President determine who I would vote for, but…

            When the candidate on the top of the ticket is 72 years old and has had cancer three times and won’t release his medical records except in the most ultra-limted of ways, I have to start thinking about President Palin.

            I have to start thinking about how I would feel about President Palin, and exactly WHO would be running the country, because we know SHE can’t do it. And I know that the POTUS has become mostly a “cheerleading” job under the current occupant, but look where that has gotten us.

            I do believe it’s time for a President who can THINK. One who has a grasp of history and CONTEXT and can make critical decisions based on a wide variety of input. One who will be able to analyize the options presented to them by the people hired to do the hard work. Not, as we’ve had in the past, somebody who will have a memo titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in the United States” and then go golfing, or worse yet, moose hunting.

          • Anonymous

            “I do believe it’s time for a President who can THINK. One who has a grasp of history and CONTEXT and can make critical decisions based on a wide variety of input”

            So you’ll be voting for McCain then?

          • Charlie L

            I think he’ll be dead within two years, which is why PALIN MATTERS.

          • Crawdude

            Charlie, you’ve never been on this site before. From your post its obvious that you are yet another of those Blue Oregon lurker drones who pops inevery now and then to try to disrupt people conversations.

            Go back to your masters and let them know you did your best but failed. Unfortunately since you are incapable of independent thought, your best just wasn’t good enough. BAH-BYE!

          • Charlie L

            I have been on this site before from time to time, but don’t believe I have posted until this week.

            I don’t go to Blue Oregon, though I have heard of it, and am sure I would fit in there much more than here, though I would be “preaching to the choir” if I bothered to post there.

            You feel that my discorse is “trying to disrupt people’s conversations?” I didn’t realize that you were so frightened of debate and discussion. I got the feeling that people around here LIKED to circle jerk ideas. That’s what was going on in the other thread I was in this week.

            All my thought is independent, though obviously colored by where I choose to get my information. You might notice that I went and found my own sources for both the U.S. Constitution (I left my pocket one at home to wear jeans today) and the transcript of the debate. I do NOT parrot the Republican talking points like so many on this site obviously do.

            I find your post to be an off-base, ill-founded, and totally inaccurate ad hominem attack. At a more polite site it woudl be removed.

      • dennis mahoney

        Good coverage, good assessment. I, a former NSA analyst, have no trust in mass media’s story telling. As a child in Portland 1940S, Laurelhurst Park had story telling ladies [NICE STUFF],for childrens hour. Then in 1957 I learned that story telling {LIES} were the sum and substance of mass media. Anyone quoting NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, NPR, BBC, etc, etc, are awash in bull stuff. For over 60 years I have been intrigued by the gullibility of liberals. The more a lie is repeated, it’s still a lie. Tim Lyman is a good reporter of facts. Thankyou Tim.
        Dennis M. Klamath Falls, Or.

        • Tim Lyman

          “For over 60 years I have been intrigued by the gullibility of liberals”

          I’ve always felt that if you could develop some way to objectively measure a person’s gullibility it would be a far more meaningful measure than IQ – call it FQ – Foolishness Quotient. The world is full of intelligent fools. Look at how many “smart” people joined the Rajneeshis.

  • Charlie L

    Yes, the myth of “the liberal media” lives on.

    That, of course, is why The New York Times (the supposed BASTION of “Liberal Media”) repeatedly spiked (i.e. didn’t publish) major stories that were detrimental to Bush/Cheney until AFTER the 2000 and 2004 elections.

    The brilliance of the movement by right wing pre-neo-cons to discredit journalism in the 1950’s and 1960’s was in being able to convince the American population that just because a given JOURNALIST was left-leaning (probably a result of being more well read and eduated than their readers) that the content of the work that they did was somehow automatically left-leaning. I give the right wing total credit for the success of that strategy, which coupled with the Clinton Telecommunications Act of 1996 pretty much destroyed “Journalism” as I grew up with it. Talk about a repeated lie that the right wing has managed to move from “myth” to “reality” to “Trusism.”

    Just like those WMD’s. Just like those ties from 9/11 to Iraq. Yeah, it’s all about the lies that are repeated until they are the truth. Couldn’t agree with you more on that.

    • d

      Charlie, in 1957 there were 60,000 card carrying communists in Los Angeles and they didn’t all simply stop being communists, and their manifesto is interested in the total overthrow of our system. So everyone was suspect in order to preserve our system. All the countries on this globe spy on everyone else and the trick is to keep the others from finding out how good they are.
      “It’s amazing how many things there are that aren’t true”!
      …..Now it seems, The true purpose of “journalism” is to fill up the spaces between the paid advertisments and the “fill”, and should be as emotionally stirring or pseudo intellectual and seemingly as truthful as imagination allows so more buyers will see or read or hear the ads. This position forces the media editors to suck up to the mass markets and this is the crap that is called ‘news?’ {notice; the mass market crap on tv} It is difficult to pull the teeny grains of truth out of the truckloads of hogwash presented. We each have one vote only and I would encourage voters to get the hell out of the emotional maelstroms that occur, gather all the data available from all sides, then vote..
      I suspect the ‘holy roller emotional hootenanny’ behavior of the attendees at the bagdad might just be the high point in their year and the election won’t have real meaning after the fact.
      Keep Smiling, Dennis

    • Anonymous

      “Journalism” destroyed its own credibility. I wish the conservative movement was as organized and effective as in your paranoid imaginings.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    You’re kidding on this one right?

    Tough row to hoe Charlie, when the moderator of the debate has a book coming out with a chapter on Obama, and obviously would do far better in sales if Obama wins as opposed to losing. No bias? Good luck with that.

    >was in being able to convince the American population that just because a given JOURNALIST was left-leaning (probably a result of being more well read and eduated than their readers)

    Wow, you go ahead and stick with that one Charlie. Nothing succeeds like condescension. Especially when you misspell educated.

    That one was worthy of Biden himself! Hat tip to you Charlie!

  • Charlie L

    Rupert, Oh my god, I can’t believe I mis-spelled a word. Please, may the heavens open up and swallow me for my horrible error. I’m glad you’ve never dropped a letter while posting. Such perfection must be nice.

    Since I’m not a journalist, and don’t claim to be, just a writer who would admit he’s a horrible speller, I don’t really care.

    But, Rupert, I am interested in whether you can point me to some places last night where the moderator was biased. I thought Ifill bent over BACKWARDS to be fair, probably cowed by the advance pummeling she took for having a book coming out on Obama. But please, I would love to see exactly where you thought her “liberal bias” came through.

    • Rupert in Springfield

      Oh hey, I drop letters and misspell all the time. I am a horrible speller. But I’ll tell you one thing, I would have made sure to do a spell check if I was doing some sort of backhanded insult implying those who don’t believe what I believe were less educated than myself.

      Face it, you had it coming after you made a big deal of me leaving the e off of gaff-e.

      The thing that made it funny here was your pomposity with the better educated thing. Get over yourself.

      Like I said, it was a Biden moment. Can’t blame me for getting a chuckle out of it. Where is that famed liberal sense of humour?

      Hey, weird irony here, I guess you learned something.

      I edu-ma-cated you – Use a spell check if you are going to run around insulting the education level of those who disagree with you.

      As for Ifill, I think she was pretty fair in the debate. I’m just saying get off your high horse. We both know the left would be doing anything but screaming bloody murder if the moderator situation were reversed.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Oh, and speaking of a lie repeated too often, could you please cite for me the evidence you have that Bush lied about WMD’s? I mean you bring it up, so I am curious.

    It must have been a damn good lie, because half the world at a bare minimum believed Saddam had WMD’s.

    OOoopps, but wait, that would imply Bush was smart. I mean if you fool half the world, including a majority of Congress with a lie, then you have to be pretty smart.

    But I thought Bush was supposed to be dumb?

    But wait a second, if Bush lied about WMD’s, then it stands to reason Bush knew he was telling a lie. If that was the case, why didn’t he go ahead and plant some evidence? How hard would it have been to roll in a couple of semi’s in the heat of battle?

    Oh, ok, so Bush lied about WMD’s, fooled everyone, then had a huge lapse and morphed back into his stupid form and forgot to plant evidence?

    It would seem that’s what you are trying to sell here Charlie.

    So please, if you have a few moments, could you please list exactly what evidence you have that Bush lied about WMD’s and how do you explain that a man willing to lie to get us into a war was not willing to plant evidence?

    I’m waiting……….

    • Charlie L

      I didn’t put GAFFE in quotes to note its spelling, but because I didn’t consider it one.

      I didn’t even notice your spelling of GAFFS, becuase I DO NOT GIVE A CRAP ABOUT SPELLING ONLINE UNLESS ITS A COMMERCIAL SITE I CREATED. I have more important things to do than check spelling.

      And I never claimed that any specific person was more educated than another, merely that the entire class of “journalists” might have more overall education than the entire class of “consumers of journalism.” Am I off-base on that assumption, that the consumers of mass media are not averaging an BA, MA, or MS from a 4-year school? Are you really going to tell me that the average WATCHER of the evening news reads as many books, magazines and newspapers as the average CREATOR of the evening news?

  • Charlie L

    First, Rupert, I never said BUSH was the only one lying. He did a few, but most were done by those below him, leaving him some “wiggle room.” Here are just a few of them. I don’t feel like wasting my day researching stuff that you can look up on your own.

    “Intelligence leaves no doubt that Iraq continues to possess and conceal lethal weapons.” George Bush, US President 18 March, 2003.

    “Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction.” Dick Cheney, Speech to VFW National Convention,
    August 26, 2002.

    “If he declares he has none, then we will know that Saddam Hussein is once again misleading the world.” Ari Fleischer, Press Briefing, December 2, 2002.

    “We know for a fact that there are weapons there.” Ari Fleischer, Press Briefing, January 9, 2003.

    “We know that Saddam Hussein is determined to keep his weapons of mass destruction, is determined to make more.” Colin Powell, Remarks to UN Security Council, February 5, 2003.

    “Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised.” George Bush, Address to the Nation, March 17, 2003.

    “There is no doubt that the regime of Saddam Hussein possesses weapons of mass destruction. And . . . as this operation continues, those weapons will be identified, found, along with the people who have produced them and who guard them.” Gen. Tommy Franks, Press Conference, March 22, 2003.

    “We know where they are. They’re in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat.” Donald Rumsfeld, ABC Interview, March 30, 2003. (This one particularly sickens and disgusts me, as the DETAIL provided implies facts and knowledge and truth that were NEVER in existence, rather than conjencture or presumption.)

    There are literally HUNDREDS more like this. As well as Cheney talking about the TOTALLY DISCREDITED statements tying Iraq to 9/11 and then DENYING HE HAD SAID IT, when it was on VIDEO.

    Don’t set up strawmen for me about whether Bush was smart or stupid, as I really don’t care. His administration LIED and MANIPULATED and STOVEPIPED and CHERRY-PICKED intelligence, while lying to members of Congress and the American people.

    If you don’t accept the facts that establish THAT, then there really is no hope for you. So many REPUBLICANS have admitted the truth of the strategy, only the die-hards pretend otherwise.

    • dean

      For d (above)….ok…assuming the average age of those 60,000 card carrying LA communists was 40, that would make their average age now about 91. So most of them are probably dead, and those still alive are not much of a threat unless they sneak up behind us and beat us over the head with their canes or walkers. Their nefarious plan to take over the United States and enslave us all in dour concrete apartment blocks driving 3-wheeled plastic Trabats has apparently failed. Plus…you may not have noticed since you apparently don’t follow journalists, but the Soviet Union collapsed, the Berlin Wall is down, China is now capitalist, and we have an embassy in “communist” Viet Nam to keep an eye on the Nike factories. This was all reported on in the mainstream media by tearful left wing journalists. Cuba may still be a threat, but all their boats apparently leak.

    • Davis

      Charlie L,

      Since by definition the one telling the lie must both know that what he is saying is false AND be attempting to convince the listener that the false statement is true, it is impossible to prove, simply by citing a statement to prove that the statement was a lie. You must be able to show that AT THE TIME OF HE MADE THE STATEMENT he knew what he was saying to be false. You have yet to make the complete case that anyone lied about the WMD.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    >Don’t set up strawmen for me about whether Bush was smart or stupid, as I really don’t care. His administration LIED and MANIPULATED and STOVEPIPED and CHERRY-PICKED intelligence, while lying to members of Congress and the American people.

    I’m not setting up anything. I was simply giving you another avenue to prove your case. If Bush lied, he acted in a way entirely inconsistent with being both stupid and a liar. I’m asking for your explanation of it. If he lied, both cannot be true. If you have some explanation as to how someone could be so smart as to fool the whole world, yet so stupid as to forget to plant evidence Id love to hear it.

    Not being able to answer that decimates your argument. You can address it or not, but that simple point would need to be taken up for your argument to convince anyone other than Kos readers.

    But let us proceed to the points you bring up:

    You also give a bunch of pre war statements that the administration said turned out to be wrong. That’s not proving anyone lied, it just shows they were in error.

    A lie requires knowing something is untrue when you say it. Merely providing a quote of something erroneous does not prove a person was lying. This is especially true when it is something virtually every intelligence organization believed, and that Saddam himself did nothing but foster.

    Basically if you are going to say Bush lied about WMD’s you are going to have to show something that indicates he knew for a fact, before saying those things, that Saddam did not have WMD’s.

    The burden of proof is pretty heavy given the seriousness of what you are saying and the fact that Bush has not been indicted on it. You are saying there is rampant evidence and yet given the hatred of Bush by many political figures he has not been impeached. Why is that? Are you simply more in the loop than everyone else? Do you have evidence of these lies no one else is privy to?

    These glaring contradictions to your assertion not withstanding, absent any direct proof, one could look to behaviour. Did Bush act like a liar?

    Well, no, because had he lied he certainly would have planted evidence, as in planting WMD’s in Iraq. The fact that this does not appear to be the case again again contradicts your assertion Bush lied

    You have something showing Bush knew before hand there were no WMD’s? Lets see it.

    Do you have a way of explaining why he didn’t plant evidence? Lets hear it.

    Failing that, do you have any convincing argument why Bush would not have planted evidence and thus his behaviour is consistent with your assertion he lied? I mean if you have simple conjecture to explain this fact, Id even consider that.

    Three options there, lets see what evidence you have.

    I’ve had this argument countless times and not once have I ever seen any of my three alternatives answered with any sort of evidence. Until you can produce something more substantial than simple assertion through the use of alternating capitalization of words mid sentence I think you had better get down off your high horse of accusing others of that which you are guilty of yourself.

    • dean

      Not to get into the middle of an entertaining argument, but Rupert…you are dancing dangerously close to “what the meaning of is is.” The multiple “no doubt” and “we know for a fact” statements Charlie sent you raise the question, did they really “know for a fact?” Did they really “have no doubts?” No one can ever absolutely prove what Bush knew or did not know for certain prior to his decision to invade and occupy Iraq. “Lying” is thus an impossible standard to prove absent a sworn statement in front of 2 or more witnesses, or a clear paper trail yet to be uncovered. I expect shortly after he leaves office, you will see former staffers step up and say or show that he indeed lied, as you define it. But we shall see.

      The evidence is clear to many, if not most Americans and the world that President Bush and his administration presented selective versions of what flimsy evidence they did have, and trumped that up to scare everyone into giving them the green light just before an election while he was at the height of his popularity and his opposition (weeny Democrats) were at their weeniest.

      The evidence is also quite clear by now that Sadam was a paper tiger. That the sanctions Bush ridiculed had worked. He had no weapons, no program, no nothin except his funny hat and an automatic weapon. We were presented with imminent mushroom clouds, non-existent mobile weapons labs, shady meetings in Prague, phantom uranium purchases, metal tubes passed off as centrifuges, and “curveball” utterings that had been completely discredited by the CIA, which Bush well knew yet ignored. We had inspectors in there working, finding nothing, and it is quite logical that Bush ordered the invasion when he did in order to prevent them from continuing to find nothing.

      Whether Bush “lied,” using your standard or not…he clearly *LED* us into an unecessary, expensive, bloody, and still ongoing war and occupation. And all for what? Apparently to strengthen the Iranians hand in the Middle East, because that is Maliki’s best friend and patron, and they will be there long after we are gone, regardless of whether we leave in 16 months (Obama) or 16 years (McCain).

      So get off your high horse unless you want to continue to defend Bush’s decision to start and then screw up this war. You spend a lot of effort trying to get me to admit I am wrong. This is a case where you should admit you are wrong. Bush blew it badly, and he decieved us willfully. Was he technically “lying?” Who gives a fig.

      • Rupert in Springfield

        >No one can ever absolutely prove what Bush knew or did not know for certain prior to his decision to invade and occupy Iraq. “Lying” is thus an impossible standard to prove absent a sworn statement in front of 2 or more witnesses, or a clear paper trail yet to be uncovered.

        Your first inclination, to stay out of it, was probably best. Obviously you didn’t think this one through very well.

        Oh, ok, so lying can never be proven, so its ok to just sling the term around all one wants?

        Look, people are convicted in court all the time for lying, absent what you state.

        Clinton was facing an obstruction of justice charge. He accepted a plea deal and admitted to lying absent those things you list. There was no sworn statement by two witnesses, no paper trail, yet he was convicted of lying to a judge and lying to a grand jury.

        And please don’t say to me that Clinton signed the plea just to be done with it. No one drags the country through impeachment proceedings and then all of a sudden just wants to be done with something.

        So the Clinton plea deal really sets this up well.

        Your going to tell me, after the Clinton impeachment, that the Dems wouldn’t impeach Bush in a heartbeat if they had something at all?

        They haven’t, why is that?

        Because there is no evidence supporting it.

        You guys are amazing, you want to be able to accuse people of saying something over and over until its true, yet when you do it yourself and are called on it, you totally wimp out.

        Ill tell you what, I gave Charley three ways he could support his lie thing. I will give you a fourth.

        Please explain to me why, given that you have no real evidence Bush lied, why it is ok for you guys to run around and say he lied, and that’s perfectly fine, but anyone saying the media is biased is repeating something until it is true and that’s not ok?

        Explain that difference to me, and maybe you will have a little credibility. Because right now it seems to me you guys have fallen prey to what you accuse everyone else of. You have repeated your BS so much that you believe it to be truth yourself.

        Told you Dean, you should have gone with your first inclination to stay out of it. Because unless you’ve got something, you just got splashed again.

  • Charlie L

    Do you actually believe that crap or is that kind of discussion just an intellectual exercise for you?

    BTW, I have no idea why they didn’t fake up WMD, other than the fact that they did not have complete control of the CIA and were probably worried that it would blow up in their faces if it got leaked.

    If you really believe you haven’t been lied to by this government, then you deserve everything you get.

    I’m done with this. Life’s too short.

    • cc

      “I’m done with this. Life’s too short.”

      Promises, promises…

      Probably just another lie…

      …they seem to come so easily to the party of Clinton.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Ahhh, the life’s too short routine. Hardly unanticipated given the alternating capitalization thing. I always find the inability to coherently back up an argument seems to go hand in hand with that. Why it is so I suppose shall forever remain a mystery.

    Would that I had knowledge of the grand unifying theory of inanity that such a mortal as I could comprehend even that one correspondence. But nay, the nexus of the twain shall in all likelihood remain veiled to me while the unfortunate dissonance that is that countenance of the combined whole shall perpetually look upon me, up from the shadows of the abyss that is non thought. Yes, it saddens me, but yet mine is to persevere, parting a clear trail through the still water sewage that is that occluding layer of the murky swamp of unreason.

    But anyway:

    I gave you three reasonable ways you could show how what you were doing was any different from what you accuse others of, and you do the “stomp off” routine.

    Maybe you should take some time the next time you start throwing around this holier than thou BS accusing others of what I have shown you yourself are guilty of.

    I told you I have asked countless liberals the same questions I asked you. They all did the same routine. Not one of you can ever give any evidence or explain how the behaviour Bush exhibited is totally inconsistent with your assertion he lied. You guys always fold with this “if you don’t know he lied you’re stupid” attitude.

    What is it with you guys? Do you all fold with this “If you really believe you haven’t been lied to by this government, then you deserve everything you get.” routine? I mean is that the best you can do, essentially saying “you’re stupid”?

    Personally I gave that retort up in 5th grade. Its ineffective. Why liberals insist on using it for anyone who doesn’t agree with them is beyond me.

    OK, so people news reporters are smart and their readers or viewers are stupid. We’ve got that

    What else? Oh yeah, right, Bush is stupid…..that’s another one.

    Um, one more…. Oh yeah, right…..I’m stupid because I asked you to prove your case and you collapsed.

    Ok, so everyone Charley has a problem with or cant prove an argument to seems to be stupid.

    Wow, well, that’s really reasoned.

    • dean

      Rupert…I’ll avoid hoping onto back onto your intellectual merry go round. To your point about media bias, the sytax of your question leaves a bit to be desired. Nevertheless…and for what it is worth…you or anyone else can claim all the media bias you want. I don’t see the connection between the 2 topics, but hey…what do I know?

      Do you deny that Bush and his administration deliberately deceived….exaggerated….stated absolutes when they lacked them, omitted information that pointed the other way, and showcased evidence they knew was flimsy? Do these examples fail to meet your standard of lying? I guess so. My standards must be different.

      Why has Congress not voted for articles of impeachment? I assume practical, political considerations. Democratic leaders concluded they had 2 years for the clock on him to run down, and given a slim majority, especially in the senate which is basically tied counting Lieberman, they had no practical means to actually remove him from office. And that looks to have been the smart decision given the way the polls are running. An alternative explanation is that Democrats are weenies who avoid fights they might lose. Either way, its not exculpatory for Bush.

      • dean

        And by the way, constantly proclaiming yourself to be the victor of your own argments is coming off as a bit ridiculous. Its like what a 10 year old does.

      • Davis

        >Do you deny that Bush and his administration deliberately deceived….exaggerated….stated absolutes when they lacked them, omitted information that pointed the other way, and showcased evidence they knew was flimsy? Do these examples fail to meet your standard of lying? I guess so. My standards must be different.< Yes. I categorically deny that President Bush deliberately deceived since I stated in 10.2 above that such action is lying. A person acting to deceive another knows that one is trying to convince the other that what is false is true. As to the rest, none of them comes close to lying. Besides, in an argument an advocate has no responsibility to argue the opponent's side (i.e. bring out "information that point[s] the other way..."). Since ranking Democrats in both chambers of Congress had access to the same intelligence analysis as did the President when he was making his case before them and the American people, and they had plenty of opportunity to use it in argument, whether in their speeches on the floor of their respective chambers or in more popular venues and media, it was their responsibility to more effectively present their case. They failed to persuade the people who overwhelmingly supported going into Iraq in 2003. They failed to persuade their fellow lawmakers who voted to authorize the use of force against Iraq. You, yourself, said in 11.1, "No one can ever absolutely prove what Bush knew or did not know for certain prior to his decision to invade and occupy Iraq. 'Lying' is thus an impossible standard to prove...." I infer from that statement you understand what I am saying here. I realize, however, that as far as you are concerned, President Bush lied, based on your remark I quoted from 13.1 at the head of this comment: "My standards [for defining lying] must be different." As Rupert, so I believe that words have meaning. To sling them around without a care and then excuse it by assuming that those who hear or read will understand and tolerate the excess ultimately hurts you. You will find it hard to recover from such hurt.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    >I don’t see the connection between the 2 topics, but hey…what do I know?

    OK – If you don’t understand the connection, which I stated in every post, then what the hell are you responding to?

    Don’t waste my time with the “Oh I’m Dean and I cant read because you cant write routine”. Its dull and it doesn’t work.

    In addition, if you don’t understand what two people are discussing, its pretty lame to jump in, admit that lack of comprehension, and go on about other peoples sentence structure. Thank you for your input, but I prefer to take advice on sentence structure from those who are not self confessed poor readers.

    I also stated very clearly the standard of a lie. Again, I’m not going to hold your hand because you have no argument and feign this lack of reading comprehension thing when the slim ice your on becomes apparent to you.

    As for why congress didn’t impeach Bush, nice try.

    I never said their failure to impeach was exculpatory. I simply said their failure was another indicator that there wasn’t substantial evidence Bush lied. Its another question that has to be answered to draw the conclusion Charley did. He couldn’t answer that and folded. Who knows, Charley may very well be privy to some sort of secret evidence you and I are unaware of. I just simply asked him what it was, he apparently couldn’t answer. Maybe the evidence he has is too top secret.

    At any rate, the failure to impeach, if the contention is that Bush lying is so obvious, pretty much blows the argument out of the water.

    Wouldn’t you think that all these Dems who got tricked by the dark lord, would want his head for misleading them? They sure don’t seem to act like it if there is in fact is all this evidence. Why is that? That leaves a big hole in Charley’s argument. Again, Charley couldn’t answer that. You’re argument that they wouldn’t impeach on a treasonous charge because he only had two years left is about as thin as it gets.

    Bush is acting in a way consistent with not lying. A democratic congress that wants Bush’s head is acting in a way consistent with lack of any evidence he lied. If that weren’t enough, the battlefield conditions, the fact that no WMD’s were found, is consistent with the conclusion he didn’t lie.

    Yet you still maintain he lied.

    This is starting to sound a lot like Roswell and the UFO’s to me. It sounds even more so when promulgated by someone who jumps into discussions he admits he doesn’t know what it is about, and thinks feigning poor reading skills is a substantial debate tactic.

    Might work with the leprechauns Dean, doesn’t cut any ice with me though.

    As for proclaiming myself the victor annoying you, I asked Charley for evidence and asked him to explain behaviour inconsistent with what he was contending. Simple questions he couldn’t answer. The result? He ran away. That’s losing in anyone’s book and I see nothing wrong in noting that fact.

    I can understand that it annoys you that I can state my position fairly concisely. I can also understand your annoyance when I rebut your points rather than engage in silliness such as the poor reading skills thing, as you do. I even think is annoys you that I can admit I am wrong, and do so forthrightly and have done so to you on two occasions I can think of. You, on the other hand, can still not admit that “all” and “several” have different meanings. I think that sort of grates on you.

    However having those abilities, and not having to stoop to silly poor reading skills nonsense does tend to win me more arguments than I lose, and this is no exception.

    Get used to it, or don’t engage.

    • dean

      Rupert…giving up arguing with a post is not necessarily admission of losing an argument. It may be expressing a preference for other, more productive aspects of one’s life.

      You state above that you did not say Congress failure to imeach was exculpatory, and then 2 paragraphs down you imply that it is, because if they had any evidence they would certainly act on it. Wrong. They may or may not have sufficient evidence to bring articles of impeachment. They know they lack enough votes in the Senate to convict even if they had evidence, so what exactly would the point be in putting the nation through a second impeachment in 2 decades?

      For both you and Davis, let me rephrase. I believe President Bush wanted a war in Iraq not to protect the United States from the likelihood or risk that he might have WMDs and he might use them against us or hand them over to someone who would. I believe he wanted a war there because he thought re-making a regime in that part of the world with our mighty military would intimidate the others in that neighborhood who don’t like us, and that instead of many years of uncertain containment and endless negotiations he could cut the Gordian knot with one bold stroke. I believe he deliberately exagerated the threat when he knew better by puffing up flimsy evidence and playing down contradictory evidence. And the record is pretty compelling that this is indeed what he did. He probably thought there were some old gas canisters stuffed in the back of a warehouse or buried in the desert, right where Rumsfeld said they would be. He did seem surprised when nothing at all was found, but what was he to do? Say “oops…my bad?” Not our boy Georgie. To admit error would be weak, and one must never appear weak.

      Was this “lying?” My dad sold water softners for a living. While in college I installed those that he sold. One day I was installing a softner….basic plumbing….and a neighbor came over and said he was thinking of buying one as well. “How much are they?” he asked. I had never talked with my dad about the price, but I knew that our cost was $150 wholesale, and installation, labor and materials ran about $50 back then (early 1970s). So I said I could get him one for $250, figuring a $50 profit on 5 minutes sales work was pretty darn good (as Sarah the Impaler might say).

      By the time I got home to tell my dad the good news, he was beet red. He said “What the hell are you doing selling a water softner for $250?” It turned out he had gotten $500 for the one I was installing, and when one neighbor talked to another…well…not good. He had some splaining to do.

      I told my dad I did not understand how we could charge $500 for a product that could be bought for $200 at Sears and Roebuck. How did he convince people to pay so much? He said “Dean, you don’t tell the ditzes everything. You just tell them what you want them to know.”

      Was my dad “lying” to the customers? We report, you decide. Technically no. He told them how great the product was, how much money they would save in soap, enough to pay the thing off in a few years (yeah right) and that their neighbors all had them and so forth. He made them feel stupid if they didn’t buy one. But he never actually lied right? He just left out some things. Like their true cost, and that insurance compaies reduced their lives by a year or so for consuming all the sodium used to flush out the resin in the tank. They didn’t need to know all that. He “deceived” them by tricking them into believing information that was at best half true. That is a textbook definition of deceit by the way, and the line between it and outright lying is paper thin, to the point of irrelevance.

      OK…we have a president who deliberately, knowingly decieved us by leaving a few things out, like the real reason he wanted a war. He told us half-truths, tricked some of us, and intimidated others. Machiavelli said that’s politics folks. That’s the way you get things done. Get over it. 1 trillion dollars, over 4000 American dead, many thousands wounded and maimed, bin Laden still at large, Afganistan going badly, much of the world hating our guts. That is the price for enough of us swallowing his deceit. Am I worried about “slinging around” the term “liar” on this guy? Do I feel I have to have a smoking gun to prove it to you? No and no. There are worse things.

      And Rupert…there you go again congratulating yourself. Say it ain’t so.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    >Am I worried about “slinging around” the term “liar” on this guy?

    Oh you are under a serious misapprehension here. What in the world gave you the impression I had a problem with you saying “Bush lied”?

    I have absolutely no problem with you slinging around the term. This is where you probably should have read the posts and understood the argument before entering into it.

    My issue was with Charley slinging around the term. He thinks people who insist the media is biased are just repeating something until it is accepted as fact. Yet when he does the same thing with “Bush lied”, that’s ok. I asked him to explain the logical inconsistency between those two views, since “Bush lied” can hardly be proven with any rigor whatsoever. He ran off in a huff when I asked to explain some glaring inconstancies in events and behaviours surrounding his conclusion. That shows me pretty well that not only did he not have any evidence more substantial than press bias evidence, but that he hadn’t really thought about his argument very much at any point up until then.

    Look, You can say Bush lied all you want. I don’t have an issue with it, its a mantra in liberal circles and I am more than aware of that. But if you get holier than thou with me about repeating something so its accepted as fact, and then claim you aren’t doing the exact same thing with “Bush Lied”, I’m going to call you on it, just like I did with Charley.

    I was telling him to get off his high horse, which he did, he left.

    Would I like to think maybe Charley will be a little more circumspect before he climbs back up on it? Sure.

    Do I think he will? Probably not within his own political circle, but maybe so when he is in a different political circle. I think most people are aware that the “your stupid” routine when someone doesn’t agree with you doesn’t really work. Hopefully they will either think of a better defense for their position, or change their position, or realize they had better not throw stones unless they can defend their own position. Hopefully one of those solutions happened in Charley’s case.

    As for congratulating myself, I don’t see anything wrong with it. you can be annoyed by it, that’s fine, I really don’t care one way or the other. In this case you have stated you don’t understand what the point of contention was, so your taking issue with my winning it is logically vapid and has no real relevance.

    For you, I would take this as maybe a time to reconsider your “I cant read” strategy. If you do not understand what is under contention, then you can hardly be said to have any knowledge of the outcome.

    • dean

      Rupert, I’ll assume you did not read what I wrote since you didn’t respond to any of it and leave it at that. “Bush deceived by leaving out important stuff” is simply less poetic than “Bush lied.”

      My comment about slinging around liar (on Bush) was directed more at Davis.

      I had one last thought on the topic, again responding to Davis. He made a case that Bush had no obligation “argue the opponent’s side (i.e. bring out “information that point[s] the other way…”).

      As I thought about this last night, it occured to me that in leading us into the Iraq war, Bush was not simply “engaged in an argument.” War is not like social security or national park management. And a President does indeed have an obligation to put all the information on the table except that which would endanger someone in the field. President’s have access to information no one else does, and when it comes to war, it is an asymetrical power position with Congress. The point is, Bush shaded the truth to get what he wanted. I don’t think there is any doubt about that, even by Davis.

  • Anonymous

    The left’s forever emblellishing characterization of what Bush did or didn’t do in advance of war reached a crecendo when the their 911 conspiracy theories emerged.
    The left behind all of the Clinton and other democrat concerns about WMDs while participating in their weapons of mass delusion.

    Now they are doing the same to Palin. The faked pregnency, non-trooper gate and the endless petty personal attacks on her and her family could not be more despicable.

    All the while dean and company give Obama a pass on the extensive corruption at every level of his political carreer.

  • Anonymous

    ACORN and Obama is a criminal

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  • eddie

    I thought it was fairly tied… until I began to realize, and did some checking… and came to the conclusion that Biden either highly embellished or completely made up rather significant examples and stories that he used to support his arguments. He also severely mischaracterized McCain’s actions and votes, in some cases outright reversing votes McCain made while in the Senate.

    Ultimately, Biden lost. However, it’s unknown whether the rest of the people who watched that debate will realize it.

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