I can keep my promises because I'm not a politician. I did not watch the debate tonight. At least, not all of it. I did catch two sound bites while flipping through channels, hoping against hope to find something more riveting than "Good Eats" on the Food Channel.
By the same token, I love reading follow-ups by bloggers around the Sphere. Many good ones to choose from tonight. Great live blogging by Capt. Ed. Interesting diversity even among conservatives as to who pulled it off tonight. However...
What I was hoping for appears in Hewitt's blog tonight. Terrific side-by-side comparison, point by point. He grades the responses, giving Bush the win on points, and slamming Lehrer for his obviously biased leads to Kerry, especially in the early going. Still, terrific analysis by Hugh, and much appreciated.
Hugh mentions that Kerry's biggest failing, and one point that well could nullify his attempt at running the country, is his talk of the "global test." I heartily agree. I've quoted numerous times the words Jefferson uttered in his 1801 inaugural: "Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations -- entangling alliances with none." Kerry (who really does represent the liberal leftist view on this point) doesn't get that. How dare we make a move without the full faith and support of the entire world, generally via the United Nations? We dare because the rest of the world does not now, nor has it ever, had the best interests of the citizens of the United States at heart. You cannot appease the French because they've never respected the fact that we made our revolution work. You cannot appease the Belgians because no one ever could. Brits (aside from Blair) are still pouting that we decided over two hundred years ago to go it alone. Even the EU is still fighting with itself to keep its financially created ubergovernment afloat. Must we say "Mother may I?" before we can ever move to ensure the safety of American citizens whether here or abroad?
I think not.
As I mentioned earlier, I didn't really expect this debate to "change" anyone's mind, except a few wafflers out there who still haven't made up their minds yet. And those who are still undecided probably won't decide until the final debate is in the bag. I myself see no reason to change my support for Bush in this election, and Way Off Bass Cam knows why. (See the comments after the post)
On to November!
Update: Lileks chimes in this morning with his views on "summits" and "allies." Sound familiar? ;-)
The Minneapolis effect
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