Idiots on Parade

As you can tell by the title, this is about politics.

I watched the Town Hall debate last night and it just confirmed a theory that I’ve been resisting for some time now. I have a friend who subscribes to what he calls the “16% Theory”. This year I have had to admit that I’m starting to buy into that theory. The 16% Theory states that every election is decided by 16% of the population. This 16% remains “undecided” until close to the end and their mind is usually made up by something one of the politicians either says or does. The theory further postulates that these undecideds are undecided because they are either stupid, ignorant or too lazy to inform themselves on the issues. In any of the cases, you really don’t want the fate of the country in these people’s hands. Unfortunately, it is. This election has made me a believer in the 16% Theory and last night’s debate was a clear example.

The parade of idiots we saw last night, starts with all eighty of the village idiots that were in the audience. I think the last time I heard questions as lame was at the MTV town hall meeting with Clinton back in ’92. This was where the boxers or briefs question was thrown out (as if she didn’t already know). There were a couple of thoughtful questions, one from a 78 year old woman via the internet asking what each candidate would ask Americans to sacrifice for the good of the country, but mostly they were simplistic and more often than not uttered in stuttering fashion.

Then there was the ring master of the idiot circus, Mr. Tom “I-so-desperately-want-to-be-the-voice-of-America” Brokaw. He really had a hold on that moderators whip…for about the first 30 seconds. The rest of the night he was whining about everyone breaking the time constraints. Hey Tom, you’re the moderator. If one of the candidates goes over time cut them off! That’s your job. Your only purpose for being in the room, really. And then, after complaining the whole time about the candidates, he decided that since he couldn’t enforce the rules he’d break them too and tacked on his own “coda” to one of the audience questions. I was really dumbfounded by his performance.

And that brings me to the two senators. the few of you who read this blog know that I am a Republican. You also probably know that I’m not a huge McCain fan. There is so much that I would like to say about the candidates’ performances last night but it would take me all morning. So I will just address what I thought was the most bone-headed statement from each candidate. I didn’t write the exact quotes down last night, so these are paraphrases. In his answer to the first question, John McCain talked about what he likes to talk about most: government spending and corruption gone wild. His main point was that government spending is out of control and that it has to be reigned in. He immediately followed that statement by outlining his plan to have the treasury secretary spend $300 billion buying up bad mortgages so that they could be renegotiated! Yes, he’s so against out-of-control government spending, he’d like to tack on another $300 billion to the $700 billion he just voted for. Genius! Barack Obama’s moment was less obvious but still great in its own right. In one of his answers on the energy situation Obama stated that he was for limited off-shore drilling but that he would first tell the oil companies to drill on the (I don’t remember the exact number he used) however many million acres of land at their disposal. So basically use it or loose it. Let’s look at the logic behind that statement. The greedy (by most politicians and unfortunately most Americans count) oil companies don’t want to use the millions of acres of land that they already have to drill on. Instead they want to drill off-shore where the oil is harder to find and more expensive to extract. Probably just so they can stick it to Mother Nature. Hey, here’s a thought: since oil companies are into making money, I bet that if there was sufficient amounts of oil on those millions of acres that they could get at more cost effectively than off-shore drilling, they’d do it. But of course thinking about things logically doesn’t get votes. Blaming oil companies, Wall Street and government corruption does.

The final idiot of the night is the reason I’m starting to sour on the Fox News Channel (which of course is what I watched the debate on). That would be the King of the Idiots (on the conservative side. Al Franken is up there on the left), Sean Hannity. I could say more, but do I need to?

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