Thursday, October 16, 2008

#96 The Debates--Ave Atque Vale

No, make that a MALEdiction. Curse them, the nasty things. Glad to be rid of them, and may they never return ... EXCEPT as true debates in the classical manner. The Oxford Union model, as I mentioned once before (#83), which pretty much sets the standard for debating teams across the U.S., is what the candidates must irrevocably demand from now (or 2012ish) on. "RESOLVED ... etc. and so on." To restore some dignity, goshdarnit. This last one looked and sounded like a disciplinary hearing in the Principal's office.

They BOTH won it, though, in this respect: there are no more to go. One more losing night for the near-senile, Grumpy Old Man would have lost him more than just the presidency. He may yet go down as the debating successor of poor, confused Gen. Stockdale on the Perot ticket of yore (lampooned unmercifully by the late, great Phil Hartman on SNL). Already McCain is the butt and fodder of much late-night humor. As for Obama? I'm sorry, but his coolity under fire was just getting TOO familiar--read: boring. Yeah, he did win all three, on the issues or off, but diminishing returns were starting to set in, I fear.

But an Ave and Hurrah!--not the last one, thank goodness--for "that one," as McCain notoriously put it. Sen. Barack Obama, I mean. He's hung in there against all kinds of odds (fill in the easy blanks), and some formidable opponents. Hillary Clinton comes to mind. And now it looks like he's got it. Much to my (somewhat belated) satisfaction ... and apparently so for the whole Planet Earth! Readers Digest is just out with a world-wide opinion poll asking nationals from 17 countries their preference between the Presidential contenders--"It's Obama by a landslide ... most striking is the margin of his support." 92% in the Netherlands, for example (among pot-smokers asked: well over 100%). And so it is from Mexico to Indonesia and in between. At last a President we can be proud of on the World Stage, even if I ain't no Dixie Chick.

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