I just finished watching the last half of the Democratic Presidential Debate. boys... Boys.... BOYS ! ! ! Leave Hillary alone! ! ! Now, Barack, she was picking on you first, but you have to play nice.
Barack, I know you'd be willing to show her all your records.
She's still not going to show you hers.
Hillary, will you show him yours if he shows you his?
Barack, you and John go pick on George.
Let's start with the obvious.
Dennis Kucinich is stark raving mad. I could swear on a stack of DSM-IIIR's (the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) that I saw him raving on the corner of Highway 80 and Alta Mere with a "will work for Scotch" sign a few months ago. I think I gave him $5.00 and some Wendy's Gift Certificates.
Kucinich wants to cancel NAFTA. He wants to cancel the W.T.O. - which would be kinda like cancelling OPEC. I don't think he can do it. The war is all about the oil. Dennis says we should impeach now.
I think it was Tim Russert who asked Kucinich about the current tax system loopholes that allow Hedge Fund Managers to roll their commissions into 401K's, or let the money prosper offshore before it's taxed. It's been on the news. It's been in the papers. The man is a freakin' Congressman, and had no idea what Russert was talking about.
To some, it might've looked like Kucinich was just avoiding the question. I'm general manager of a shipping company, and I knew exactly what Russert was talking about. (I can read....) Once again, I'm ready to swear on a stack of straitjackets that Kucinich didn't understand the question.
So Kucinich said we should impeach.
The moderators asked about the situation where foreign kids spend 193 days in school, but the kids here in the U.S. spend 180 days a year in school. (Democrats have always like to measure Seat Time - it's hard to do Seat Time poorly.) He would cut Pentagon spending 50%, give the savings to day care. Free College. Free Happy Meals. A Free Pony in every garage.
All the healthcare problems will go away if we just socialize medicine.
And then we bring actress Shirley MacLaine into the sandbox. Yes, Shirley MacLaine.
Shirley MacLaine, the godmother of Kucinich's daughter, and Dennis Kucinich, the Democratic Congressman from Ohio, saw a UFO over Shirley MacLaine's house. It gave them warm and fuzzy feelings.
That was all discussed in the Presidential Debates. This is what I found elsewhere....
MacLaine also recommended in the 1980s that Kucinich visit New Mexico spiritual adviser Chris Griscom, whom MacLaine featured in her then-best-selling book, "Dancing in the Light," describing how Griscom helped her communicate with trees. Kucinich has insisted that Griscom was not his spiritual adviser but a "teacher and a very good friend."
When the moderators brought up this story, Kucinich helpfully added that Jimmy Carter had also seen a UFO.
Oh. Never mind, then.
There are people in Great Britain, New Zealand, and China who regularly read this blog. Lord, I'm embarrased for my country.
Another thing I wasn't aware of....Has Rudy Giuliani already won the Republican nomination? These people are already running against him.
Bill Richardson did more mumbling and fumbling than anyone else.
Hillary mentioned someone named "Bill" too many times.
Chris Dodd didn't screw up any, but came across as a politician.
Barack Obama is one smart man. He's too protectionist for my tastes, but he made some great points about our 10,000 page tax code, and a building in the Cayman Islands that's the offshore tax shelter/headquarters of more than 10,000 corporations, and he made a lot of the same points that I made here.
Obama, Edwards, and Dodd came out of their corners implying that Hillary was too wishy-washy to be President. Then Hillary caught a question about Illegals getting driver's licenses. She was for it except when she was against it. Tim Russert lifted his eyes from his jowls long enough to detect the non-answer. Obama and Edwards dogpiled her for Double-talk.
Obama did slaughter one question about the frustrations many Americans have with the airline industry. He blamed it on the airlines being de-regulated. Huh? The airlines are deregulated? American airlines can now fly straight from Texas to Beijing, and the government's not going to stop them? GREAT ! ! !
Remember the kid in high school that you couldn't stand, who was always running for student council, and always did a lot of apple polishing for the teachers? He was incredibly superficial and slick and every word he said seemed as if it had been typed, rehearsed, and reviewed by multiple focus groups? Do you remember that guy too? ? ? Well, he grew up to be John Edwards.
When asked about possible high energy prices this winter, The Carolina Ambulance Chaser said he was going to have HIS justice department investigate the oil and gas companies. When asked if people who live in "repeat" disaster areas (like the people who live below sea level in New Orleans, or on the Carolina coast) should have their losses continually covered, covered, and covered some more by FEMA, regardless of the insanity of continuing to rebuild there, Edwards could only talk about heartbreaking needs and taking 700 students to The Big Easy.
John, they wanted to know if it made sense for the government (us) to insure properties that no individual in his right mind (me) would insure. That was the question. You're prob'ly going to hear it again.
John Edwards also did some razzle dazzle on the question of taxing Hedge Fund managers. Because John used to work for a Hedge Fund, didn't he? So John answered that he was p.o.'d that the Democrats had killed the reform bill. He tied it to Iraq. He talked about swapping American jobs for Toxic Chinese Toys. He talked about Wal-Mart, The Beast of Bentonville, not wanting to secure our borders by having shipping containers inspected. He talked about everything but this:
Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards said Tuesday that he worked for a hedge fund to learn more about financial markets and their relationship to poverty in the United States.
Edwards won't disclose how much he got paid as a consultant to Fortress Investment Group, but said he did keep the money.
"It was primarily to learn, but making money was a good thing, too," the 2004 vice presidential nominee said in an interview with The Associated Press.
Fortress Investment Group, founded in 1998, describes itself as "a leading global alternative asset manager" with approximately $35.1 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2006. The company is headquartered in New York with affiliates around the world.
Edwards said it's legitimate to ask questions about whether there is a contradiction between campaigning against poverty while working for a hedge fund that is designed to make rich people richer. He said the job was a compliment to his position as the head of a poverty center at the University of North Carolina.
I think Joseph Biden won the thing. He made some good points about foreign policy. He didn't go off into too many loony tangents. He came across as experienced, like Chris Dodd. He seemed compassionate. He had to score some populist points at the end by slamming Chinese Toys, which are the Scud missiles of this election cycle. He didn't dog-pile Hillary. Maybe he's running for Vice-President.
It took me about an hour and a half to watch the debate, and another hour to type this mess up. The next time there's a debate, I'm going to try to save a few minutes and do a real-time unedited blog. Require myself to hit "post" every time there's a commercial. A raw feed from the mouth of Dennis Kucinich to my laptop, bounced off a UFO to your computer screen.