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The real winner [by Alicia]

OK, let me tell you who the real winner of Wednesday night’s presidential debate at Hofstra University was. Yes, yes, clearly Sen. Barack Obama trounced the lagging Sen. John McCain more thouroughly and cooly than he did in the first two debates. And McCain sputtered and stumbled, repeating the same catchphrases over and over. And if we go by the polling numbers released immediately following the face-off, yes, it looks like the public agrees McCain was left babbling in Obama’s wake.

But did B come out on top? I don’t think so, my friends.

Joe the Plumber won that battle.
Did you guys WATCH that debate? Joe the Plumber’s name got tossed around more than the nerdy kid’s lunchbox.

If you didn’t watch, and rely solely on buntology for your campaign trail news, here’s the recap. And B) Good work, buntology is all the news you need.

At the beginning of the debate, while discussing economic policy, Sen. John McCain made reference to a Joe Wurzelbacher, a plumber in Toledo, Ohio, who attended an Obama event. Joe the Plumber told Obama, “Your new [econmic] plan is gonna tax me more” or something like that. Obama, caught on camera, explained something something “I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they’ve got a chance at success, too. And I think that when we spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.”

McCain called out B for that, critiquing the “spread the wealth” idea. And then brought up Joe the Plumber 32 more times throughout the evening.

“Joe should be able to buy his own business!”
“So people like Joe the Plumber can own his own … business!”
“My plan HELPS people. People like Joe, Joe the Plumber.”

And so on. You get the idea.

I watched the debate at – surprise! – my day job. I watched with rest of The Eagle copy desk and my .. I don’t want to say my favorite reporter, because I like all of my reporters a lot .. but on both a professional and human level, he’s my secret fave. Uh, so anyway, we watched the debate, and reporter Jack and I noticed McCain’s repeated economic metaphors about hatchets and scalpels. Yes, I know B also used the reference. But McCain mentioned it multiple times, and it kind of freaked us out. Jack was like, “It’s like Saw 5. First, I’ll use my hatchet .. then my scalpel ..” HA! I chimed in, “Then, my chainsaw .. !” HA!

But Joe the Plumber and Jigsaw weren’t the only recurring slogans in McCain’s sorry snubs.

We heard about how we shouldn’t be sending $700 billion a year for oil “to countries who don’t like us very much.” Guess which country we get most of our oil from? Canada. Those fuckers!!

And did you know? McCain’s willing to fight his own party. And he’s got the scars to prove it.

The most exciting thing McCain did was get nervous and stammer. Oh, did I say exciting? I meant predictable.

B, on the other hand, remained cool and collected. And when moderater BIll Schieffer brought up the attack ads the rivals have been lobbing at one another, Obama addressed the issue with a calm directness. He told McCain that he was 8 years old, and Bill Ayers was 40, when Ayers was with the radical political group Weather Underground.

McCain and Palin have recently been calling attention to the fact that Obama was on a committee a few years ago in Chicago with Ayers, who is now a professor. This is the guy Palin’s talking about when she says B “pals around with terrorists. McCain also mentioned that Obama launched his campaign for the presidency from Ayers’ home. Obama calmly told McCain that wasn’t true.

“The fact that this has become such an important part of your campaign, Sen. McCain,” B said, “says more than your campaign than it does about me.”

By the numbers
Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg worked with a focus group of undecided voters in Colorado. He crunched some favorability numbers, and here’s what he came up with.

Here were the favorability-unfavorability ratings for each candidate at the start:

McCain: 54 favorable / 34 unfavorable
Obama: 42 favorable / 42 unfavorable

And after?

McCain: 50 favorable / 48 unfavorable
Obama: 72 favorable / 22 unfavorable

And, if you really wanna get down with this, here’s the full hour and 30-minute debate.

Sorry to deflate the Obama balloon (no I’m not) [by Will]

It’s obvious that anyone who doesn’t like Barack Obama doesn’t like him because they’re a racist.

Come on. Let me begin by saying by almost no means am I a McCain fan. If I ever diss Obama, everyone’s like “Yeah well thats because you LOVE John McCain… and George Bush!” Wrong. “Will, don’t you know how stupid McCain is?!” OK, I don’t disagree, stop trying to make me. McCain is certainly not a good candidate and he’s not a maverick. All he does is try to play off what will win him votes. Sarah Palin anyone? How about voting for the bailout because that was the popular thing to do at the time? He’s also anything but a conservative. John McCain sucks. But Barack Obama is worse.

You know how a lot of people hate religion solely because of religious people? They don’t hate God, but they hate God’s fanclub. Admittedly that’s a huge part of the reason I hate Barack Obama. Everyone loves him for all the wrong reasons. I’ve said before I’m not too political, and that’s true. But can’t help but feel like I’m well-informed when a typical stance for Obama that his fans give me usually sounds something like this: “He’s for the people man! It’s time for CHANGE. He’s such a great speaker and… dude, you’re racist.” Yes. Little did most of you know my middle name is Adolf. If we’re playing the race card here, let’s try and approach this fairly and look at a few things we KNOW about Obama.

The church Barack Obama attended, baptized his children in, and gave money to was led by Reverend Wright. Reverend Wright. Reverend Wright is a racist. If you don’t think so or aren’t sure, Google his name or type it into YouTube and watch any video and listen to anything he says. I won’t even quote him because I’m overly confident that if anyone does a search for him all you’ll find is hate speech. This is literally the equivalent of John McCain donating money to the KKK every week. It is. But I’ll play fair. Let’s give Obama the benefit of the doubt (the same way we’d naturally give McCain the benefit of the doubt if he were donating money to the KKK) and assume Obama ONLY attends that church for the donuts after the service is over. Hey I like Krispy Kreme and I’ll sit through a sermon of “God damn America!” to enjoy a handful. Let’s even give him that much and assume he’s not a racist… Why else should someone dislike him?

Well there’s really no reason to dislike Obama if you like Socialism. Obama and Socialism go together like Tuna, Noodles, and Surprise. Mmmm. I liked Robin Hood when I was a kid, but at some point I remember thinking, “Robin Hood is… kind of a bad guy.” Taking money from the wealthy and giving it directly to the poor, or using it on programs for the poor is actual Socialism. It’s taking money from people who worked for it and earned it, and giving it to people who didn’t. That’s one of the only things that is clear that Obama will be doing if he’s president. The worst part of that is, it actually directly effects the middle class as well. Let’s give an extreme example and say we start taxing the oil companies 300% what we tax them now. They’re greedy bastards anyway, they deserve it! All that happens now is gas prices go up 300% and they make the same money they’re used to and you either start walking to the liquor store OR fill up for nine dollars a gallon to drive yourself there to feed your habit (…Jackie) The oil companies could really care less. If you want to save time and cut out the middle man, you can not elect Barack Obama and instead every week find a homeless person and give them half of your paycheck. I find that it helps to really imagine yourself doing it. You can work 20 hours a week for yourself and your own interest, then proceed to work another 20 for someone you’ve never met and programs you don’t care about. (And don’t roll your eyes at me, I can actually see you doing it!) If you think it sounds extreme, it’s not. When you can finally retire at 85 years old, I won’t say I told you so. I’ll just redirect you to to view that article from October 2008. By that time the Bunt girls will inevitably be living large off the buntology profits… but not really because 3/4 of their first million went to a government program authorized by Barack Obama to provide free hairspray to contemporary pet groomers to start styling their poodle’s with some zazzy new dews! But I think we can all agree upon the “end all” question. Is staring at Barack Obama’s handsome face for the next four years worth the cost? Hell. Yes. Where do I sign?