Please no more debates unless it is a duel

I aged a thousand years last night.

Melania’s grammatically incorrect “Be Best” campaign is about anti-bullying, and yet…

It makes me sad to think of the Trump voter who buys into all his nonsense and aggression. Like, how lost and desperate is that person? Who abused them as a child?

Biden had pen, paper, and notes at his podium. Trump had nothing (in his brain also).

Chris Wallace had a difficult job, but there is no denying he did a really bad job. Leading questions, allowing Trump to not answer the question at all, inappropriately scoffing at times. Twitter suggested the moderator needs the ability to mute mics next time, but I say one step further: shock them like in the Milgram experiment. There should be damage after repeated offenses and a refusal to learn/respect the other candidate.

Biden did as well as he could have done given extenuating circumstances. He handled the police question poorly though. Should have focused on accountability which nearly everyone agrees on. His middling answer displeased both sides. Next time, I also hope he is faster on citing Trump failures and lies. Voters claim they want to hear more about policy, but that’s a lie. They want to learn who just feels right. These “debates” are a showcase for personality, not plans. We can google the plans. It’s about presentation.

Trump wore a nicer tie than Biden. That is all I will ever concede to that shitbag. And it pained me to say even that.

It is a function of pure privilege and denial to be undecided at this stage. It is an aggressive choice to stay uninformed at this stage. It shows a level of self-absorption and complete lack of empathy to not take a side at this stage. I’m actually convinced the undecided faction is a myth this election. The undecideds are actually Trump supporters who are embarrassed to publicly support Trump. There are, however, plenty of nonvoters, but that’s a different question.

The abusive note in Chris Hayes’ tweet, keenly observed by Nicolle Wallce, is key.

 


Trump is more than a bully—he is a narcissistic abuser. We saw it live happening to both Biden and Wallace, and that’s a large part of why many of us were made to feel so uncomfortable. It wasn’t just a shouting match gone awry. Trump was in a fight for survival and attacked instinctively and viciously.

Clip that follows is from a Slate article Lili Loofbourow re: McConnell’s dickish comments after RBG’s passing.

I am not saying anything new here. But what I am interested in, because I think it must be understood, and because the stakes of it have never been higher, is what McConnellizing does, affectively, to so many American citizens. What it feels like, in other words. We are overdue for a real reckoning with what it means to be degraded by our own leadership. And make no mistake: It is degrading when people lie to you openly and obviously. Leaving the polity aside for a moment, it’s the kind of emotion we humans aren’t great at coping with. Sometimes we react by snorting at anyone who expects any better (that is again the “you’re surprised?” cynicism). But if you can’t cover it with cynicism, it simply hurts…

It will not help to call the leadership we have right now hypocrites; they will not care, and I doubt the charge will motivate the people who need to be motivated much. But insofar as our own reactions are concerned—and while we think about how to counter an obvious and ugly attempt to steal the Supreme Court seat of a feminist champion of equal rights even as Americans have already started voting—it may help to register the lies they tell you as the calculated insults to your intelligence and to your citizenship and to your country that they are. Fully witnessing and registering insults and degradation is more painful than sneering that you aren’t surprised. But I’ll be blunt: People are more willing to fight people who insult and degrade them than they are to fight mere “hypocrites.”

Notably, Loofbourow discusses what it feels like to be lied to constantly. The palpable degradation is not just a consequence of the GOP ambition at this time; it is the goal. We are being driven to feel so badly about everything that they hope our survival/trauma instincts take over and allow us to eventually feel nothing. And it’s working to some degree. Trump and the GOP violated law and order with the RNC before our very eyes, and we just sighed and moved on.

 


Included this short rant from Elie Mystal as well to highlight that Wallace/the media are not innocent here. They made a choice to show us what we have been shown the last four years. As enablers of the constant lying and systematic degradation, they are complicit and guilty of negligence at a minimum. However, it is a feedback loop, too. To some degree they are only reacting like we are. I can understand that, but the difference is they’re in a position of immense power. Plus they have now almost four years of learning how to cover this Presidency. They have chosen to give Trump all the airtime he never deserved, and we are all worse off for it. They could have banded together and not aired his criminally misleading COVID press briefings earlier, as the simplest example.

Please no more debates unless it is a duel. Doesn’t have to be a duel to death but give ‘em practice swords and let them just fight it out. Only then would Joe Rogan be an appropriate moderator.

Wish we could just vote tomorrow.

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