I didn't get to see the entire debate but I did see most of it. And I downloaded the transcript for the part I didn't see at C-SPAN. Here are some of the highlights from my point of view.
First, I think Kerry won this debate but didn't deliver a knock out blow. No memorable line that makes Bush look like a dope. No "there you go again" line. Polls show that this seems to be the plurality opinion out there. Only Republicans think Bush won any of the debates.
Second, I thought Bush was defensive and whiney again. I've heard people are calling Bush "Furious George" now. Its a great nickname, but I'm not sure it fits 100%. "Spoiled George" or "Whiney George" would be better fits but they don't sound as funny.
Third, I thought Bush's answers on domestic issues were excessively "on message." That is he mentioned "no child left behind" in answers to questions about jobs, taxes etc.
Fourth Kerry's performance was a little sloppier than the first debate. His answers weren't quite as tight and he showed some of his tendency to give long, complicated answers.
The moment I thought was most telling was when Bush said the solution for the impending flu shot shortage was for young people to not get flu shots. Think about this. Bush says the health care situation is better now than it was when he got into office but we are going into a flu season with half the flu vaccines we need! Bush said that our health care was the envy of the world. But I wonder what the flu shot situation is in Canada or Sweden or Denmark?
This leads me to one other comment: Bush said that government controlled health care would lead to "rationing." He said that what we need a "market" in health care. But the problem with that is people always want more health care! Demand for health is inelastic. That is as price goes up, demand remains high. So what Bush is proposing is de fact rationing but the mechanism for rationing will be how much you are willing/able to pay for more health. More money = more health. Less money = less health.
Thursday, October 14, 2004
Posted by Raised By Republicans at 7:33 AM