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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Are You Ready For Some (Political) Football? The CNN Debate

I watched the CNN GOP debate last night for a little bit. Like I've said before, there's just not enough new political ground to be tilled on a weekly basis. It makes good theater, and even better soundbites, but as far as good government? Not so much. The opening montage was more befitting ESPN's Monday Night Football than a debate about serious political issues. Packaging trumps policy. Style trumps substance. Meanwhile, we sit there and watch and think we are contributing somehow. Right thinking people (I mean people who think properly) everywhere should be concerned about this.

But, the MSM runs the country and if they want games, then let there be games.

I'll keep this short, winners to losers:
  1. Newt Gingrich: Head and shoulders above the rest, there is no arguing that (as long as we're talking about governing and policy matters). Trending: Up
  2. Mitt Romney: He's got lots of weaknesses (chief among them being an East Coast Republican), but he's got a lot of strengths too. Trending: Marginally Up
  3. Herman Cain: Withstanding the attacks fairly well, but his complete lack of depth on matters of foreign policy are becoming painfully evident. I am sticking with my endorsement, but I'm going to need more than what I am getting. Trending: Down
  4. Michelle Bachmann: She actually seemed a little less shrill and a little more important last night. Still a long way to go. Trending: A teensy-weensy-little-bit Up
  5. Rick Perry: He placed fifth just because the other two were so bad I couldn't justify anything lower for the Rickster. There's just something about him that is plastic and thin of substance. Might it be his plasticity and thinness of substance?
  6. Ron Paul: Herman Cain could teach him a thing or two about foreign policy. That's not a good thing.
  7. Rick Santorum: There is just something monumentally unlikeable (and untrustworthy) about him. He's just got one of those personalities that kills off any redeeming quality he might have.
Anderson Cooper was smarmy and superior as usual, but he wasn't bad as a moderator at all.

Now let's talk about the real problem.

I've rooted for the New Orleans Saints since I was a little kid, something that is not easy to do in the land of Big Blue and Gang Green. I identify with my team. I love everything about my team. When someone on my team acts like a jerk I look the other way. They're my team. Your team sucks. When my team loses I make excuses. When they win, I call you up at midnight and make fun of you. I am a sports fan.

America is sports crazed. America is politics crazed. America has blurred the line between sports and politics. Now that we are using political debate to sell soap we are in real danger of losing the ability to discern between the good and bad of those we fundamentally disagree with. This will only further the divide between us, which will eventually push one side off the cliff. Don't think that's a good thing...because we're tied together. When one side goes off the other will quickly follow.

Politics is not sports my friends. Politics is the pathway to the future we leave our children. America needs to grow up and understand this. Now.

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