Camping and politics

Captain O’Biden, Wonktheplank, moderndomestic and I went camping this weekend.  The camping part didn’t actually happen but the trip was very enjoyable.  On the way there we stopped for pizza at a small place on Kent Island, MD and we were able to watch the first 1/4 of the debate on TV.  We had originally thought we would listen to the entire debate on the radio which made me nervous.  I have heard the story repeatedly of the 1960 debate between John Kennedy and Richard Nixon. Nixon wore an ill-fitting shirt, refused to wear make-up for the TV and sweat profusely under the hot lights.  Those watching TV declared JFK the winner and those who listened on the radio declared Nixon the winner.

In any case my first observations of the pizza joint were that the TV was on Fox News Channel, a sure sign that we were in red territory. So I perked up my ears to see if I could hear what their side was saying as they watched the debate. But really everyone was for the most part listening intently until a patron felt the need to explain to us that his 16-year old son lives in Delaware and knows politics. His son says that Joe Biden is the most corrupt member of Congress and to hell with all that stuff you hear about Joe Biden being the real deal/ stand-up guy. However this gentleman was unable to elaborate beyond his firm declaration. How disappointing that someone has based his choice for President on an unfounded statement. Did the debate affect him in any way? If someone is so willing to base a decision on virtually no solid information, then does he have the patience to sit through an hour and a half with an open mind? Probably not but then again the debate could not have changed my vote either, but I like to think that I am more well informed.

For the part I watched, which covered issues on the economy, Obama’s perceived strong issue, I would say he did a good job of tying the economic crisis and John McCain to 8 years of George W. Bush.  But Obama didn’t really explain what this bail out will substantively achieve and how it will help consumers rather than Wall Street.  I was disappointed in that respect but I would have to give Obama the win on the economic discussion.  I particularly liked how he compared the relatively small amount spent on earmarks to John McCains proposed tax cuts.  Way to go Obama!

Then we moved into the car for the rest of the debate as we drove to our “campsite” (AKA a family vacation home because no one wanted to pitch a tent in the rain).  Oh I would have loved to see this part of the debate.  They talked over each other in some places and I was dying to see the reaction shots on some of those accusatory statements.  Particularly where McCain attacked Obama for not having a hearing on Afghanistan.  Obama replied that the Afghanistan issue is so important that the full Foreign Relations committee handled Afghanistan because it is such an important issue.  Good answer Obama, even though the real answer is that you have been running for President.   I hope Obama kept his cool.

The reaction in the car was mixed. We all had very high expectations for Obama and he only partially met them.  The polls are out showing that the public gives the advantage to Obama.  I guess that is good news for Obama, but I am still waiting for what I want.  I want an “A Few Good Men” moment.  Obama as Tom Cruise and McCain as Jack Nicholson.  The air gets sucked out of the room as the whole audience realizes that McCain is completely unprepared to manage the economy, the two wars we are fighting, and that he will actually do anything just to win.  Will I get that magical moment?



September 29, 2008. Election 2008.


  1. Travelling the UK - caravans » Camping and politics replied:

    […] ferosha wrote a fantastic post today on “Camping and politics”Here’s ONLY a quick extract […]

  2. Zorro, The Gay Blade replied:


    Regarding McCain’s attack on Obama for not holding any hearings on Afghanistan, I just want to point out that he had made this criticism already a few months ago, before Obama chose his running mate. Joe Biden wrote an open letter to John McCain to inform him that as Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, he felt that Afghanistan was so important that the full committee would take up those issues, instead of leaving them to Obama’s subcommittee.

    It’s true, Obama may have been MIA on the campaign trail and would likely have not held hearings in his subcommittee, period. But even if he had been in Washington, full committees generally hold hearings on issues of supreme importance, so the full committee would likely have handled Afghanistan issues instead of Obama’s subcommittee anyway.

    –Zorro, The Gay Blade

  3. moderndomestic replied:

    I don’t know if it’s in Obama’s nature to go all “A Few Good Men” on McCain’s ass. He’s too thoughtful and calm – but I also think that’s a good thing.

    I wish we could have seen McCain’s face when he started talking over Obama near the end of the debate – the one moment where it really seemed like McCain was losing his cool. Apparently he looked very angry and out of control, which makes Obama’s composure all the more attractive.

    And thank God we actually didn’t camp this weekend! Yay for the beach house!

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