In contemporary American Society fact checking has
become passe' and so this column has not been fact checked.
Attempting to write a column that adds new and perceptive insights to a discourse that has already disintegrated into BS gridlock is a fool's errand, but at 0530 hrs on a Friday morning in Berkeley CA, there ain't much else to do. You can make some coffee and start writing or you can go back to sleep, which sometimes is something you can't do by sheer force of will.
Sometimes after a middle of the night trip to the bathroom,
we turn on the radio to see what Mike Malloy is saying on XERB, where his show
follows the Wolfman Jack show. On the
broadcast for Thursday October 2, 2012, heard in the San Francisco Bay
area between 1 and 3 a.m. PDT on Friday monring, Mike was offering the opinion
that perhaps President Obama had to make a concerted effort to not look like an
angry black man.
Norm Goldman reminded his listeners of a similar situation and noted that President Obama's personality is one of being a quiet and thoughtful person who does not get drawn into any brawls verbal or physical. Norm pointed out that the President has earned his nickname "no drama Obama." He suggested that perhaps the President should have done an imitation of St. Ronald Reagan and said something like: "there you go . . . fibbing again."
News media reported that several different instant polls had
given a decisive win to Mitt Romney.
Last week polls that showed the President had an impressive lead in
swing states were loudly denounced for being slipshod and unreliable, but the
ones that made Mitt look good were apparently and suddenly impeccable examples
of what the polling industry is capable of producing.
Norm criticized the fact that many people were closely analyzing the body language of the debaters and not paying close attention to the substance of the dialogue. All the body English criticisms seem to be directed against only one of the participants in the boring debacle. How, we wondered, did Mitt earn a pass?
Long ago a political pundit in Germany wrote: "All propaganda must be popular and its
intellectual level must be adjusted to the most limited intelligence among
those it is addressed to. Consequently,
the greater the mass it is intended to reach, the lower its purely intellectual
level will have to be."
President Obama seems to have assumed that the folks watching the TV show had a policy wonk level of comprehension of tax policy. Mitt seems to not want to bother his listeners with information that reaches the "pick the fly excrement out of the salad" level of preciseness.
The people who insisted on evaluating the speakers' body
English as a method of judging the debate itself, seem to have focused
exclusively on the President. The
World's Laziest Journalist noted during the split screen segments that quite
often Mitt seemed to be exhibiting the nervous frantic mode of operation. Would Mitt's jittery behavior have aroused
any suspicion if it was observed by a policeman during a traffic stop? It's not that he appeared to have been
inebriated. Quite the opposite. His extreme animation couldn't possibly have
been chemically induced . . . could it?
(Didn't the aforementioned German political pundit use some performance enhancing substances?)
What was with the black spot on his American Flag lapel
pin? We looked online and found some
speculation but we did not find a plausible explanation of it. (Could it have been a tribute to the oil
Many years ago, a Military Police Officer casually mentioned that when he and his fellow officers were, during off hours, playing a friendly game of mind-f*ck with each other, the most devastating criticism they could offer was: "you are acting like a hysterical old lady."
We were reminded of that nostalgic bit of advice on
Wednesday night as we watched Mitt's lightening fast jerky movements and
wondered if the old disconcerting assertion was relevant to the debater's
Many years ago novelist Norman Mailer made the assertion that the most damaging thing a celebrity (or politician?) can do is to go against type and that might explain why "no drama Obama" didn't unload a verbal knockout punch but sometime an unexpected reaction can be very effective.
In a different galaxy many moons ago, we knew a young lady
who we had never once heard use the word "f*ck." When we heard her say "f*ck off, Bob," it was
very effective oratory and it got its intended result immediately.
The trouble with the 2012 Presidential election snapped into focus when we heard Merle Haggard sing "Drink up and be somebody" while writing the column on a "crash cloes" basis.