Full disclosure: I didn't watch the entire thing. I started ten minutes late and had to take a call in the middle of it. And towards the end, I couldn't refrain from going to the computer to read a bit, but I listened half-attentively in the background. So, if I happen to misrepresent what happened in the debate, that's why. In which, I can only hope the informed reader would not hesitate to correct any error I may have made.
The poll on the bottom showed that around 90% of the poll-voters were for withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, and yet only 20-30% thought Ron Paul did well in the debate[UPDATE: apparently Ron Paul did very well in the polls, as the Fox News Poll on who won the debate had him as the landslide winner. Either I didn't read the poll that flashed on the screen right, or those things are totally unreliable] despite the fact that his anti-war stance is almost unique to him among the candidates. Oh well, it's not exactly surprising to learn that most people are cognitively inconsistent.
Tim Pawlenty's character proved to be of an even more slimy substance than I thought. His repeated attempts to smack Bachmann and Paul because of their failed leadership in the Congress is hilarious. You are 1 person out of 435 unthinking old geezers. Leading them to vote against something they inevitably would vote for is no more an indication of poor leadership than a fitness trainer stuck with chronically unmotivated and morbidly obese people who won't go to the gym who fails to get them to lose a significant amount of weight.
Against every grain in my system to avoid reiterating what the Fox News commentators said, Newt Gingrich did very well. He appeared more professional, intelligent and more well-read than most of the other candidates - which he is. I still don't think he has a chance, but I wouldn't be surprised if is numbers hike by a few points.
Who is this Huntsman guy? He was good orator, but of literally no substance. He's running for President with no articulated economic plan? I could have easily constructed one in the amount of time he used to insist that "[he] loves [his] country, [he] is willing to do anything to serve [his] country." Is it just me, or are patriotic cliches really annoying?
I don't understand how Romney can possibly be the frontrunner even though nobody likes him. Even the media doesn't like him. The percentage of the viewers that approved of Romneys performance was around 25 %. Around the lowest among his competitors. My only guess as to why this is the case is that most people really hate him while around a quarter vote for him because he's the guy everybody knows about, not to mention his hair and looks.
, I was genuinely surprised that the Federal Reserve and the need to audit it came up, even if the discussion barely scratched the surface. Could this be a sign that your humble narrator is well ahead of the highly-motivated, unmatched caliber that serves as the cloth of our political elite? Bloody shame the mainstream media and its elect didn't exert its force when it counted. But then again, I only heard Paul, Gingrich, and possibly Sanatorium (I can't remember exactly) utter these words of sanity. No Romney, no Cain, no Pawlenty.
For some reason watching the debate, I half- consciously imagined Rick Perry chilling backstage. He seemed like one of those Alpha Males who gets talked about without even having to do anything.
Overall, I thought the debate was pretty good. They are certainly better than the abysmal lot that the 2008 primaries were consisted of. And if the principles of small and limited government are the chorus of our times, then they have sung our song in tune. Whether they will materialize their rhetoric or not, we'll have to see.