Old Patriot's Pen

Personal pontifications of an old geezer born 200 years too late.

NOTE The views I express on this site are mine and mine alone. Nothing I say should be construed as being "official" or the views of any group, whether I've been a member of that group or not. The advertisings on this page are from Google, and do not constitute an endorsement on my part.

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Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

I've been everywhere That was the title of a hit country-and-western song from the late 1950's, originally sung by Hank Snow, and made famous by Johnny Cash. I resemble that! My 26-year career in the Air Force took me to more than sixty nations on five continents - sometimes only for a few minutes, other times for as long as four years at a time. In all that travel, I also managed to find the perfect partner, help rear three children, earn more than 200 hours of college credit, write more than 3000 reports, papers, documents, pamphlets, and even a handful of novels, take about 10,000 photographs, and met a huge crowd of interesting people. I use this weblog and my personal website here to document my life, and discuss my views on subjects I find interesting.

Friday, October 01, 2004

Did we learn anything last night?

I don't watch television or listen to the radio because I have a hyperacusis problem, and any sound above a dull whisper is anywhere from annoying to painful for me. I've had this problem for ten years now, and I don't consider I've missed much, except a few sporting events I'd like to have watched (sometimes I sneak a peek, but with the sound turned off). I did take a minute today to watch Mt. St. Helens erupt again, but that's all I could manage. The one thing I haven't missed is all the garbage being spouted on terriblevision from all the political candidates. I guess there's a silver lining to every cloud, if you look hard enough.

I can't believe how many tens of thousands of words have been written about the televised "debate" last night. I read Hugh Hewitt's posts as he live-blogged the event, as well as keeping up with things on Powerline. Today has been spent going over the details posted on just about every blog I read, even occasionally. In the end, the final judgment from the majority was - it ended in a tie.

Bush can live with a tie, John Kerry needed more. Unless Kerry improves greatly over the next debates, he's toast. Bush needs to keep from making any serious gaffes, continue to hammer on Kerry's waffledom, and the election is won. One comment that appeared over and over was that "Bush looked tired", "Bush seemed unfocused", et. cetera, ad nauseum. Kerry definitely was more poised, or so everyone said. The bottom line is, however, that the President of the United States is not in the position of holding debates - his job is to run the government of the United States on a day-by-day basis. That takes making decisions, sometimes split-second decisions. It means delegating to others minor tasks, and accepting that they have the ability to get them done. It means setting priorities, and sticking with them until something pops up that requires a change. John Kerry hasn't demonstrated those abilities, and neither the debate last night, nor any of the commentary written about it, gave me reason to change my opinion.

The actions of the two men BEFORE the debate did do much to strengthen my decision that Kerry would be a poor choice for the White House. The news media reported that George Bush spent the day reviewing the damage four devastating hurricanes inflicted on Florida - a key state, and one that almost cost him the presidency in 2000. John Kerry, it was reported, spent a large portion of the day getting a manicure. There's no mention of him stomping for votes, surveying the damage, or doing any thing else PRESIDENTIAL before the debates.

Actions speak louder than the shrillest words. President Bush acted presidential; John Kerry acted foppish. John Kerry acted the Boston Brahmin - above it all. George Bush acted the Texas rancher, understanding that helping a neighbor in a time of difficulty was not only morally right, but essential for both their survival. Bush "won" the debate long before the two men entered the television studio.


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