The first of the presidential primary debates are becoming a part of the forgettable past. I watched some of the Democratic debates but the one last night in New Hampshire spoke volumes about the king makers in the media who focused on Clinton, Obama, and Edwards while the rest including a few who really had the courage of their convictions e.g. Dennis Kucinich holding someone in this administration accountable for this unjust, immoral, and illegal war of aggression in Iraq for the most part were marginalized by the media.
Yet dissecting what is presented as "the Democratic debates" passing for one of their core values "equality" and the exposure of that sham as an opposition party is for another day because what intrigues me at the moment is the upcoming Republican debate to be held tonight in New Hamsphire.
Indeed I've been following the Republican debates more closely. Perhaps to satiate some psychological need to face hypocrisy and be sufficiently repelled by it to claim the emperor isn't wearing any clothes.
Or perhaps my curiosity is peaked by a political ideology based on maintaining the status quo by whatever means necessary that is removing itself further from reality by denying the simplest of truths i.e. life itself is in a perpetual state of change. Hypocrisy is no stranger to Democrats but Republicans excel at shameless rank hypocrisy.
My interest was initially generated by the first of the Republican debates conducted in the Reagan library. Reagan was for Republicans what FDR and Kennedy were for Democrats and the media was sensationalizing the event to increase viewership by framing the debate between several candidates each trying to more closely resemble the traits of the great communicator himself while the politicians on the stage were willing participants playing their role by citing someone they could never be.
Perhaps no one was more transparent as a demagogue than the so-called front runner Rudi Giuliani. I'm referring here to a specific comment by the leading Republican Presidential candidate during the first Republican debate which reflected the degree to which he was removed from reality and the manifestation of that mindset in the most recent Republican debate.
Giuliani's comment in the first Republican debate that really exposed the vast expanse between his perception of reality and reality itself occurred when he stated that Iran "looked in Ronald Reagan's eyes and in two minutes they released the hostages". Indeed it was Giuliani who was offering an absurd explanation of the Iranian hostage crises that was both extraordinary and reckless by mistaking the make believe of television for reality.
Chris Matthews mentioned "the October Surprise" in his post debate analysis but failed to provide any substantive relationship as if assuming everyone knew that members of the Ronald Reagan presidential campaign met with representatives of Ayatollah Khomeini's government i.e. the terrorists who were holding 52 Americans hostage thereby committing a federal offense at the very least by engaging in foreign policy offering to trade weapons via Israel to an Iran at war with Iraq in return for releasing the hostages when Reagan was inaugurated. In essence Iran got a better deal looking into Reagan's eyes than talking to Carter.
During the second Republican debate Giuliani set himself apart from the pack when Rep Ron Paul (perhaps the only "real" Republican on the stage i.e. against big government, for fiscal responsibility and defense of the country by not involving ourselves in the affairs of other sovereign nations) mentioned that 9/11 "here" was in response to and a result of our presence "there".
It was not the "absurd explanation" Giuliani claimed it to be for the factual history is that Osama Bin-Laden did indeed claim that acts of terrorism against the United States were based on U.S. troops on the sacred soil of Saudi Arabia, U.S. support of Israel's persecution of Palestinians, and the deaths of over 500,000 Iraqis most of whom were women and children from the first Gulf War conducted by the U.S.
In response Giuliani said: "That's really an extraordinary statement, as someone who lived through the attack of 9/11, that we invited the attack because we were attacking Iraq. I don't think I ever heard that before, and I have heard some pretty absurd explanations for Sept. 11" and added that Rep Paul withdraw the comment and say he didn't really mean it.
Rudi Giuliani's remarks provided an open window into the same small mind of our current demagogue that divides people rather than brings them together for the common good and that same delusional mind which is so divorced from reality that in a display of utter disrespect for his opponent he openly mocked the truth and the truth teller as well.
The venom of Giuliani's words was greeted with a thunderous applause from an obviously uniformed blissful audience as if by loudly applauding ignorance they would make reality disappear the more they clapped.
In response to Giuliani's display of unmitigated gall when asking the truth teller to deny the truth Rep Paul sent Giuliani a list of foreign policy books giving him an opportunity to educate himself but Giuliani's campaign stated Rep. Paul's claims were extraordinary and reckless. In essence a Rudi Giuliani America will have little tolerance for the facts that support an uncomfortable truth and Rep Paul should have offered the same book list to Joe Klein and the other watchdogs of democracy that shape public opinion.
Meanwhile saner minds prevailed when the Fox News tally showed Rep Paul winning the debate while Giuliani was third none of which prevented the media establishment sycophant Joe Klein from claiming in Time Magazine that Rudi won the debate and reduced Paul to history".
Once again the "lie" triumphs over the truth, once again the press exercises its freedom by obeying its master and covering it up by barking on command but at the end of the day there will be consequences for the truth of our deeds and not the lies on the lips of our current delusional demagogue and his true believers.
How ironic that the next Republican debate takes place in the "live free or die" state of New Hampshire. If the truth shall indeed set us free what then are we as a people when we deny the truth and applaud our own ignorance? If the truth teller is marginalized as a fringe candidate whose presence on the stage is questioned and the demagogue who really isn't fit to lead this country is crowned the leading contender then our future can be found in Kafka's observation that "there is hope, but not for us".