Friday, April 15, 2016

The CNN Dem Debate: Deja Vu All Over Again

We tuned in to watch the Democratic Debate on CNN last night, especially after biting on all the hype that it would be "fiery" based on earlier traded remarks by both candidates. But in the end it turned into a sleeper and we both tuned out about an hour before it concluded.

Our primary gripe is that the debates have become too much like deja vu with the same responses offered over and over, whether the topic is Hillary's SuperPacs, her Wall Street speeches, climate change or national security. (The new added topic was breaking up the big banks which ought to be obvious to the most obdurate dumpkopf given all our banking problems - including their leverage and  metastasizing dimensions - occurring mostly after commercial and investment banking was mixed.)

Most irritating to see was Hillary's usual dodging and backpedaling, including on her fracking support, as well as her dancing around the $15/ hour minimum wage which Bernie consistently supported and the CNN moderator had to yank out of her as not backing - but rather a $12 increase only. (Which, to incrementalist Hillary "would be more practical")

Most annoying of all was her continued refusal to release the transcripts of her Wall Street speeches, using the specious cover "not until everyone else does".  But.... there is no "everyone else" in the Dem firmament! (Except Bernie and his take is zero given the Wall Streeters see him as an unreconstructed commie). And clearly and obviously only a totally deluded person or nincompoop would believe the Repugs would release anything! (They don't even adhere to civil debate standards).

It also should not have taken over eight minutes of debate time for the moderators to knock down Hillary's hogswill that Vermont is the state most responsible for guns entering NY. In fact, anyone would be able to ascertain that state is Virginia, yet the moderators just sat there stupefied as she babbled on with her sketchy, dodgy codswallop.

Then, for the umpteenth time we heard again Bernie's justified justifications for voting for certain gun laws on the basis of protecting small gun store owners - explanations he'd already delivered at least a dozen times in different debates.

The media - whichever- could improve these debates if they already had a store of the candidates' prior responses on file that could be replayed at the touch of a button under whatever category came up - gun control, climate change, national security.... whatever. And then warn the candidates in advance no repetitions would be permitted without a time penalty.

Of course, it is also incumbent on the media not to ask the same old questions that elicit the same old responses - and also to do their fact checking on the spot, as when Hillary claimed natural gas fracking would be an effective "bridge" source of energy.

But we aren't holding our breath and neither should anyone else. As far as we're concerned this is the last Democratic debate for us.

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