Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Debate This

Folks on the port-side are feeling pretty good about the Vice Presidential debate last night, just as people to starboard were all excited over the first presidential debate. Me, I care how the election turns out but this debate schtick just frosts my pumpkin.

My idea of a debate is that people marshal facts, logical arguments and, if applicable to the question, values on behalf of a controversial proposition. The winner is the person who makes the most compelling argument. The elements of a compelling argument are:

  1. True facts
  2. Correct logic
  3. Values I happen to agree with
So why did Mitt Romney and Joe Biden "win" their respective debates?

You could go through the transcript of the first presidential debate with a microscope and I doubt you'd find Mitt Romney saying anything factually true or logically correct. I was more inclined to find Joe Biden's arguments, to the extent he actually made any, compelling, but that's not why he "won" his debate.

The fact is the voters they are trying to win over don't have a clue what's true or not or how to decide that, and couldn't tell a logical argument from doubletalk. The winner, in both cases, was the guy with the most impressive swagger, the one who gave the beat down, the guy who swung the biggest stick. And that's what the press coverage says too. Sure, Romney was more full of shit than a port-o-potty but that's irrelevant. Biden was large and in charge although he laughed too much. On the other hand Ryan drank too much water.

This is a totally idiotic way to to choose a president. These "debates" are worthless.


robin andrea said...

I turned off the first debate after about 15 minutes. Too much theatrics and lies. I watched the VP debate, even though I swore I wouldn't, because Biden was smart and entertaining. I do agree with you, these are not debates; they are an utter waste of time. Yes, Mitt Romney is more full of shit than a port-o-potty.

roger said...

political theater. like all that tsa airport security crap.

thomas sabo sale charms said...
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