The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

29 November 2007

Ready forum

The Media Gatekeepers have evidently decided that what we want — no, what we need — are irregular spurts of mass debating, interrupted at intervals by planted questions and by narcissists with video equipment. The inevitable result: candidates end up as commodities, and the "national dialogue" is exposed as several thousand monologues. If I never see another "debate" again, it will be too soon.

I'd watch this, though:

For the future, Id like to propose what I call the Algonquin Round Table Debate. No moderator, no stopwatches, no buzzers or red lights, no YouTube, and, please, no Anderson Cooper or Chris Matthews. Instead, put all the candidates around a big table, ply them with first-rate food and liquor, and just let them talk and argue with one another until — or beyond — last call. Now that, for Democrats or Republicans, would be an event worth watching.

Over a period of years, it might even improve the quality of candidates, though I'm not getting my hopes up.

Posted at 7:38 PM to Political Science Fiction


Hmmm. "President Drew Carey"...

Posted by: McGehee at 8:54 AM on 30 November 2007

"Narcissists with video equipment" pretty much sums up why I've watched exactly zero debates this season.

I wonder whether the idea of "several thousand monologues" rather than "national dialog" is just really a sad summary of the state of the nation today, though.

Perhaps what we really need to do is make the campaign kind of like Dirty Jobs or some of those reality-based shows. Make the candidates go and dish up cafeteria food to third graders for a day, or require them to muck out horse stalls, and watch the results. It might be more useful information than what we're currently getting - I'm not sure I'd be willing to vote for someone, who, say, had no compunctions about cursing out 10-year-olds.

Posted by: fillyjonk at 10:03 AM on 30 November 2007

I second Fillyjonk's idea. I don't watch "Dirty Jobs," but the prospect of watching Her Inevitableness clean up the killing floor at a slaughterhouse just might bring me in.

Posted by: McGehee at 2:07 PM on 30 November 2007
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