Skip to content

The Penultimate Debate

It was the last Republican presidential debate before Super Tuesday. What? You didn’t watch it? No matter. It is much more fun to watch Jon Stewart make fun of it:

If that isn’t interesting enough, read Matt Taibbi explain why he enjoyed watching the Republican candidates stick long knives into each other’s backs at the debate:

This is justice. What we have here are chickens coming home to roost. It’s as if all of the American public’s bad habits and perverse obsessions are all coming back to haunt Republican voters in this race: The lack of attention span, the constant demand for instant gratification, the abject hunger for negativity, the utter lack of backbone or constancy (we change our loyalties at the drop of a hat, all it takes is a clever TV ad): these things are all major factors in the spiraling Republican disaster.

Most importantly, though, the conservative passion for divisive, partisan, bomb-tossing politics is threatening to permanently cripple the Republican party. They long ago became more about pointing fingers than about ideology, and it’s finally ruining them.

Go read the whole article, it is excellent.



  1. Dan wrote:

    Taibbi describes the progression of paranoid hysteria to a T. For instance, Stalin’s purges followed a very similar pattern, while Taibbi mentions the CIA.

    Friday, February 24, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Permalink
  2. IL-08 wrote:

    I think the craziest thing is the fact (although under-reported) that the debates are having a significant and dynamic impact on the primaries. Romney is going to win in Michigan next week purely because it is perceived that Santorum had a bad debate. Gingrich won Ga. because of a couple of good debates, then Romney won Fl. because of a couple of good debates. The debates killed that Texas guy…

    But the most amazing thing is that it is only the last debate that counts. All previous debates are forgotten, no matter what sins were committed. It seems a crazy and capricious way to choose a candidate.

    Saturday, February 25, 2012 at 11:34 am | Permalink
  3. Dan wrote:

    IL-08, I wonder if in addition to amnesia the phenomenon can be explained by the “vote for the perceived winner” syndrome (or whatever it is called), in which people select a candidate based on a wish to be one of the people who voted for the winner (to get the good feeling of being “on the winning team”) rather than any particular intrinsic value of the candidate. It’s a bit like supporting sports: rarely is it expected that a fan must have a good reason to support a particular team.

    Saturday, February 25, 2012 at 6:57 pm | Permalink