Third and Final Presidential Debate, 2012

Obama won mostly on substance so far as I can see, and looked better than ever. Although I concede Romney continues to look smart and Presidential, and is good at staying disciplined and on-message. Although if Romney repeated that line about Iran being “four years closer to a nuclear weapon” one more time I would have blown up my TV set.

Otherwise, I’m pleased to see that Romney is a tough trade war proponent who wants stronger trade protectionism and to raise tariffs, just like the good progressive Republicans of old under the likes of Teddy Roosevelt and Abe Lincoln. I predict that the Ayn-Rand-Corrupted Market Ideologues who’ve completely taken over all rationality and common sense in the Republican Party will continue to ignore this just like they ignore it every other time Romney takes a crap all over their “the free market = big corporations” and “government can only do wrong” and “free trade with despotic regimes is always good and right and wonderful no matter how much we’re getting screwed or how many people it enslaves” silliness. If Romney wins, I will enjoy watching 4-8 years of him buggering the “anti-government” and “pro-market” conservatives up the ass, good and hard. Because that’s what he’ll do, and I’ll enjoy watching him do it. Because I frankly believe him when he says he’ll work hard with Democrats. And I will laugh at them and mock them mercilessly, because they’re effing nuts, and wouldn’t know what a real free market looked like if it bit them on the face. (Anyone who things massive publicly-traded corporations, which are 100% a government invention and 100% a government intrusion on the free market, needs to have a good hard dose of reality splashed in their face, although many of them seem impervious to that.)

Also, it was nice to see Romney concede that he will “repeal” Obamacare, he will really, truly, only repeal some parts of it. Which anybody who knows anything knows are the parts that are likely to get modified under the next administration whether he’s in charge of it or Obama is.

All that said, I’ll never vote for Romney.

The Anybody But Obama crowd will get their final say. Let them enjoy it. Maybe they’ll win, maybe they won’t. The sun will come up the next morning either way.

Obama/Biden in ’12. Yes, they suck. They just suck less than Romney/Ryan. But America survives either way, I predict.

  • http://madisonforum.net/ Sandi

    Both did well, but Romney looked much more presidential.

    Obama spent too much time interrupting on petty points, which will probably be fact check as wrong, ( although I am no fan of fact checking ).

    For having no record to run on: domestic or foreign policy, Obama did fairly well.

  • jaymaster

    I agree, good prediction on the finality!

    I thought this one was pretty much a tie, like the last one.

    So IMO, that gives the edge to Romney, who won the first one outright and then just hung in.

    I thought Romney was playing much more to the middle this time though, while Obama was playing towards his base.

    So for that, I’ll give the election to Romney!

    We shall see.

  • http://madisonforum.net/ Sandi

    So IMO, that gives the edge to Romney, who won the first one outright and then just hung in.

    The way I see it, Obama needed to break Romney’s momentum, a tie isn’t effective for that: he needed something big. So in that light, and only that light, Romney won.

  • Scott

    I always tell my students (the three classes of them I’ve had): come strong out of the gate. If you don’t, if you screw up the first midterm, you’re always going to doubt yourself and you’ll make an impression on the professor (in that case me) of your quality. You’ll fight this doubt and the impression for the rest of the quarter.

    Obama flunked the first debate; Romney aced it. Even though both men went on to do about as well as each other from then on, the professor (in this case the voters) had an impression of each.

    Obama needed to soundly defeat Romney who appeared much more presidential in each debate than Obama. But he didn’t; Romney more than held his own.

    But, the election is not over. It’ll be close (though I hope it isn’t). I hope it’s a a rout. I hope that Romney wins so soundly and with such a large margin that only the bitter partisans of the left question his legitimacy (as they did from 2001-2009) so we aren’t burdened by their bad ideas for a decade.

  • jaymaster

    Methinks the “horses and bayonets” line was planned.

    Good on em, though.

    http://www.facebook.com/horsebayonets

  • Scott

    Hmm,

    Horses and Bayonets are still used by the in-theater active military:

    http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/155123/

    Obama was “Snarky, Condescending, Peevish & Small”

    http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/155096/

    I really think this is going to help Romney more than Obama.

  • Scott

    I predict that the Ayn-Rand-Corrupted Market Ideologues who’ve completely taken over all rationality and common sense in the Republican Party will continue to ignore this just like they ignore it every other time Romney takes a crap all over their “the free market = big corporations” and “government can only do wrong” and “free trade with despotic regimes is always good and right and wonderful no matter how much we’re getting screwed or how many people it enslaves” silliness.

    Again, respectfully Dean, you love to construct straw men.

  • Dishman

    Dean wrote:
    “the free market = big corporations”

    Do you have a citation for this?

    I’m pretty sure that I’ve been saying for years, “big government = big corporations”.

  • http://madisonforum.net/ Sandi

    Obama lost his chance in the mid-terms. All he needed to do is move back to the middle ( as Clinton did ). If he had done so, he would also be cruising to an easy second term victory now.

    From what I have read this morning, many Romney supporters are wishing that they saw the same level of aggressiveness from Romney that they saw from Obama. I disagree.

    It played well for Obama’s base, and would have for the Romney base too, however the votes to be won here are among the undecideds, or the few votes that can still be changed. To those I have a hunch that aggressiveness comes across as snarky or condescending.

    The fact that Romney was consistent and finished strong has probably won the day.

  • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

    Dish: “Regulation = bad” don’t you know, even though regulation is the only thing that stops big corporations from doing whatever they want.

    Yes, let’s please, please take away the government’s power to limit what these government-created entities do. Because that will give us more freedom.

    Because “smaller government” is always and invariably, intentionally or not, code for “let big corporations run wild without even having to bother to talk to the government about it first” under the same exact theory that if we have fewer cops we’ll have less crime.

    Also, remember, “smaller government” never, ever means fewer prisons or a smaller military budget to these people. Ever.

    These folks will get exactly what they deserve if they get what they ask for. I have no pity for them. A part of me hopes they get it just so they figure out how well they’ve been duped by the Rand-influenced ideologues who have everybody convinced that it’s still 1980 and that “big government” is everywhere and always the cause of all our woes, but can’t seem to wrap their heads around the fact that megacorporations are a government creation and a government intrusion on the free market they supposedly so revere.

    Gaaah. The Canadian system looks more sensible to me all the time. Despite their flaws, radicalism at least gets smoothed out better, and their economic policies obviously work one hell of a lot better than ours do too. (Oh but wait, they have SOCIALIZEDED MEDICINE AND THAT IS EVIL EVEN THOUGH IT COSTS LESS AND WORKS BETTER THAN OURS ITS EVIL EVIL EVIL HISS HISS HISSS SOSCIALSISM!!#!@1!!1!)

    I’m as sick and appalled by the pseudointellectual hatemongers of the radical right as I am by the radical left. Gah. That’s the thing I most fear about a President Romney: the fever-brained left will be back out in force again, spitting and screaming about their usual bullshit. More money for the Michael Moores of the world. Feh.

  • http://madisonforum.net/ Sandi

    “please take away the government’s power to limit what these government-created entities do”

    “smaller government” is always and invariably, intentionally or not, code for “let big corporations run wild without even having to bother to talk to the government about it first”

    “smaller government” never, ever means fewer prisons or a smaller military budget to these people. Ever.

    Dang sorry Dean.

    But I have to say that I have never seen you build strawman after strawman before. No one on the right says those things, in that context, that I ever heard. At least not to any extent beyond a few radicals.

  • http://www.likelihoodofconfusion.com Ron Coleman

    From what I have read this morning, many Romney supporters are wishing that they saw the same level of aggressiveness from Romney that they saw from Obama.

    What actual Romney supporter wold say something that dumb?

  • ArnoldHarris

    (The following is a comment I posted this morning on Israpundit, most of whose regular posters and commenters hold Obama in the same sort of profound distrust that they have for James Earl Carter. I comment frequently there. I am sure they distrust me as well, because my opinions are more blunt and radical than most of theirs. AH)
    ———————————————————————————-
    Here in the USA, this election is prioritized overwhelmingly on the state of the US economy. Not on abortion. Not on rights to own or carry firearms. Not on rights of the public employee unions vs the taxpayers who pay their way. Not on environmental protection. And not on foreign policy, with exceptions of the perceived need to make sure Americans — including American diplomats — are not killed in Arab cities, and of the equally perceived need to protect Israel.

    Therefore, if Obama loses the election to Romney, the most important factor will be perceptions of American voters that the current president has failed establish policies that will restore something close to full employment, stop the floodtide of growing national debt, and avoid raising taxes to pay for all of the above.

    The time has come for most Israelis to understand the need for the Jewish state to grow its own power base on an expanded national territory. There have been faked or carefully arranged truces between Israel and a couple of Arab states, organized in wooded presidential settings with handshakes for the photographers. But all of these staged plays fall apart when the Arab street mobs take control of their own governments, as in Egypt. The same will happen one day in Trans-Jordan, whose little English king will be driven back to his true Atlantic island home. The Jewish nation in Israel can have peace solely by conquering it. No compromise is possible in a clash of civilizations. The one prevails over the other in any given locale, and drives it out. Act accordingly if you would save Israel.
    ———————————————————————————-
    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  • Dishman

    Dean,

    I believe you’re looking at a theoretical understanding of regulation, rather than what tends to actually happen.

    In theory, regulation restricts the actions of big business.

    In practice, regulations are shaped by those with the time and organization to lobby the regulators. That means big businesses have a significant advantage over small businesses, and existing businesses have an advantage over new (or not yet created) businesses.

    Everywhere you’re not looking, someone is up to something you don’t like.

    Regulations become a means of securing and enriching the status quo.

    I believe this is a case where the actual results are the opposite of what you intend.

  • ArnoldHarris

    Only 10 more campaigning days remain before the 2012 presidential election on Nov 6. Today’s Gallup tracking poll shows Romney ahead of Obama by five points, and the Rasmussen tracking poll shows Romney ahead by three points. It is getting difficult to see how Obama could turn this election around, especially in that Romney and Ryan have far more resources to deploy for the final ground game days in the swing states. The initiative since the first presidential debate has been firmly under the control of Romney, Ryan and their well-organized and well-backed campaign.

    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  • Scott

    ArnoldHarris,

    I’m hoping what you say it true. I believe, on balance, that Romney is the better candidate for the job. But as InstaPundit, Glenn Reynolds, says “Don’t get cocky”.

    -Scott