Debates 2020

The Trump-Biden Spectacle Was Hilarious and Good for the Republic

Like Trump's presidency, the debate destroyed unfounded respect for the people who rule us.

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Chris Wallace, who tried to moderate this week's raucous presidential debate, regrets "a terrible missed opportunity." My 14-year-old daughter, by contrast, thought it was a gas. She watched the debate with rapt attention, laughed repeatedly, and afterward kept going on about how great it was.

I cautioned her that the Trump-Biden spectacle was far from typical of presidential debates, which are generally very dull affairs that most people, aside from passionate partisans, watch only out of a vague sense of civic (or professional) duty. But I was also alternately amused and flabbergasted by the president's antics.

I disagree with the many critics who called the debate "unwatchable." It was extremely watchable, more so than any presidential debate I can recall. But my reaction may be idiosyncratic, since my favorite moment from Trump's debates with Hillary Clinton in 2016 came after she called him Russian President Vladimir Putin's "puppet." That epithet led to this exchange:

Trump: No puppet. No puppet.

Clinton: And it's pretty clear…

Trump: You're the puppet!

Clinton: It's pretty clear you won't admit…

Trump: No, you're the puppet.

It's even funnier when you watch it. The Trump-Biden debate gave us many, many more moments like that.

One striking thing about Trump's refusal to play by the rules or show even a modicum of civility was its effect on Joe Biden. The Democratic candidate actually engaged in more ad hominem attacks than his bullying, ever-interrupting opponent, who is hardly shy about tossing around personal insults. While Trump questioned Biden's intelligence by averring that he "graduated last" in his class at the University of Delaware, Biden called Trump a "liar," a "fool," a "clown," and a "racist."

At least three of those four epithets are demonstrably accurate. But they are not the sort of thing politicians are supposed to say in public, and they surely did not help advance a substantive discussion of public policy. "This is so unpresidential," Biden complained at one point, even while emulating Trump's rhetorical style.

Prior to Trump, memorable put-downs in presidential and vice presidential debates included genial admonitions ("There you go again"), condescending comparisons ("You're no Jack Kennedy"), and echoes of fast-food slogans ("Where's the beef?"). Biden, provoked by Trump, has really upped the ante.

Does Biden's resort to personal taunts reveal something about his character, or is it an understandable, maybe even justifiable, response to Trump's babyish behavior? We know what Biden's supporters think. After the debate, the Biden Victory Fund immediately started hawking a T-shirt with "Will you shut up, man" emblazoned across the president's face. Notably, that is what Biden said when Trump pressed him to answer a perfectly legitimate question—"Are you going to pack the [Supreme] Court?"—that Biden was keen to dodge.

People appalled by this week's spectacle may worry that Trump has not only made rational discussion in this particular campaign impossible but forever ruined presidential debates—which, let's be honest, were never that great to begin with, although they did at least sometimes manage to communicate something about the candidates' positions and aspirations. But I am inclined to agree with Eric Boehm that the "dumpster fire" Trump ignited, by burning away any pretense of mutual respect, laid bare the paucity of our political choices.

The main promise of a Trump presidency was that he would destroy the respect and deference that occupants of his office automatically receive. Likewise, the main promise of presidential debates dominated by insults, interruptions, and cross-talk is that they will destroy the notion that we are ruled by wise men who know what's best for us.

My daughter, who started watching the debate with a strong anti-Trump bias, emerged unimpressed by either candidate. She would be hard pressed to say what either of them has to offer, aside from entertainment value. In a country dominated by two parties with incoherent principles they do not follow, this is the beginning of political wisdom.

NEXT: California Gov. Gavin Newsom Signs Policing, Probation, Juvenile Justice Reforms

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  1. “At least three of those four epithets are demonstrably accurate.”

    Give me a T!
    Give me a D!
    Give me a ….

    1. He is a liar, obviously. He is a clown (down to the fake hair and skin tone.) He is a fool given how he makes people laugh and loves to poke fun at authority. That’s three.

      Be careful. TDS runs both ways.

      1. Orangemanbad.

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  2. “liar,” a “fool,” a “clown,” and a “racist.

    Trump at least “three” of those? Probably not.

    A liar for sure. The biggest liar in US political history.

    A fool? No. He is a con man fooling others. He knows exactly what he is doing after Bannon read him the wingnut playbook. He blew an abortion question early on but nails the playbook.

    A clown? Trump is the most dour humorless SOB I have ever seen.

    A racist? That is the boring one. His birtherism is racist but so what? It is part of the con.

    1. “The biggest liar in US political history.”

      LOL.

      1. But I want to say one thing to the American people. I want you to listen to me. I’m going to say this again: I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky. I never told anybody to lie, not a single time; never. These allegations are false. And I need to go back to work for the American people. Thank you.

        The difference? Trump doesn’t pretend his is not lying.

      2. Biden and Trump proved one thing. If you vote for the lesser of two evils, you still get evil.

        1. So, ‘lesser’ has no meaning then?

          1. “Evil” pushes me from a 25 floor building. “Lesser of the two evils” pushes me from a 20 floor building.

            1. no president of the u.s. does either of those things.

              1. True. Hilary was never successfully elected.

                1. And she has people that perform the actual physical action for her anyways

            2. And on the way down, as you pass the third floor, do you think to yourself “Well, so far, so good”?

              1. The 25th floor would have given your more time.

            3. Evil pushes you off the third floor. Leaving you with a broken back, maimed and/or a vegetable. The lesser evil pushes you off the 20th floor leaving you good and dead.

            4. Well, you really shouldn’t put yourself in a position to pushed from any floor by “Evil” or “Lesser”.

              1. Evil pulls a gun on you, ties you up and drags you to the 25th floor, then pushes you off it.
                The lesser evil calls you mean names.

        2. Evil is always on the menu.

      3. Why is questioning a particular black man’s place of birth racist?

        1. Because it inclines that the particular “black man” in question is not worthy. I don’t know, something like that.

          1. Democrats are the party of slavery.

            They literally held blacks as property in the USA. Thats about as not worthy as you can get.

            Democrats have been losing the black vote for decades. They needed a token black dude that the deep state and white DNC leaders could run.

          2. No democrat is worthy, regardless of color.

        2. Because like the great conservative strategist Lee Atwater said “these days you can’t say ‘nigger nigger nigger’ so you say ‘unAmerican or socialist'” and white voters know what you mean.

          1. Congrats. You win for dumbest comment of the year.

          2. The only white asshole shrieking the n-word here is you, Buttplug.
            Fucking bigot racebaiter.

        3. Because Trump is the one asking. Only that.

          1. I disagree. What Shrike said above is pretty spot on. Trump’s a pro at dog whistles.

            1. Never mind that Obama called himself Kenyan when it was convenient?

            2. dog whistles work on dogs. Those who hear racist whistles are the racists. Go watch more young white women call black cops the n word and race traitors. Go watch the doc Uncle Tom if you wang to see which party is really racist.

              1. No thank you. I’ll leave you and the others to consume the outrage porn.

                1. I am about as conservative as you can be. It is fascinating that leftists always have to point out the dog whistles and explain what they mean. I think that only leftist can hear dog whistles because they are the only ones fixated on race or whatever other victim status.

                  1. Trump telling a crowd of white people in MN that they have “good genes” isn’t a dog whistle? You may agree with him. There’s nothing wrong with that in my book. But that’s a blatant dog whistle he used and if you don’t realize that then you’re one of his useful idiots.

                    1. Americans have good genes.

                      Youre a racist lefty because you assume MN has nobody but white people. That and no non-white people would ever attend a Trump rally.

                    2. “Americans have good genes”

                      Even lefties?

                    3. Eric’s letting the phrase “dog whistle” is do all the work. It allows him to describe Trump as advocating a position at odds with what they actually said.
                      Basically allowing Eric to misrepresent (lie) about Trump’s position. A common linguistic tic found in bad faith arguments.
                      Jeff, Tony and White Knight pull this tactic a lot. Buttplug, Kirkland and Sqrlsy try to, but they’re not smart enough to pull it off.

                    4. You’re a racist idiot, Eric, and if you hear dog whistles it’s because you project your own ill attributes onto Others.

                2. “I’m stupid and plan to stay that way!”

                  Thanks for clearing that up.

                  1. Lol. I’m sure you’re very informed.
                    Start the day with One America news. Then one to RedState and Breitbart. Rush Limbaugh and Michael Medved (and whoever else you get your talking points from) on the radio in the background all day. Then onto Reason where you skip the articles and go straight to the comments. And finally to bed with Fox News and Tucker Carlson.

                    1. Was it MSNBC that you got the idea that your kid was going to get drafted for World War 3?

                    2. Or was it NPR? They sure were convinced we were about to go to war with Iran, too.

                    3. Why do you insist that I’m a leftist Comfort Dental? I’ll agree that I’m left of you, but so is 99.9% of the population. And it was a Reason article/commentary discussing the possible consequences of the assassination. You know…Reason….the libertarian magazine where you spend most of your days and nights commenting on?

                    4. unreason, the non-Libertarian rag.

                    5. Strawman, ad hom and red herring all in one comment. Nice trifecta.

                      Kind of interesting that the only thing you know is right-wing news sources considering that you’re the one proudly declaring that you refuse to consume media from outside of your narrative bubble. IMAX doesn’t project as much as leftists.

                    6. Why do you insist that I’m a leftist

                      Because you do nothing but regurgitate poorly constructed leftist talking points that you crib from the most low-brow left-wing sources, like HuffPo and Democratic Underground. Do you have any other questions we could help you with?

                    7. I’ll agree that I’m left of you, but so is 99.9% of the population.

                      True, leftists do love their suburban whiteopias.

                    8. Damn. Y’all got some demons in yo head, dawg.

                    9. Michael Medved? The film critic?

                    10. @Eric
                      Why do you insist that I’m a leftist

                      Because it’s beyond fucking obvious?
                      What, did you think because you weren’t waving a red flag and singing The International we wouldn’t notice?

                    11. “Circle the wagons boys. Someone’s challenging our groupthink”

                    12. “Circle the wagons boys. Someone’s challenging our groupthink”

                      “I’m a victim that resorts to reddit-tier boilerplate.”

                    13. “His” kid

                    14. “Why do you insist that I’m a leftist”

                      Because you use stock leftist arguments verbatim and display the same emotional state.
                      Dog whistles, FoxNews/OAN/Breitbart, leftism is the neutral rational position, etc.
                      You pretend your fantasy is reality. That those who disagree with you are really saying things they didn’t actually say (and everyone totes understands what they really mean), that they’re the extremists who get all their ideas from some mass media source and average people really agree with you.
                      It’s psychosis and projection, through and through.

    2. Trump lies a lot, yes. The thing is he lies about stupid petty shit mostly unlike our last asshole president.

      Keep your doctor.
      No more wars
      End the patriot act.

      1. Close gitmo.

      2. 99% of us with private insurance kept our doctors.
        There were no more wars. Fuck you if you think Libya was a war.
        Congress passed a watered down Patriot Act that Obama signed.

        1. 99% of us with private insurance kept our doctors.

          Even your friends in the “fact checker” community couldn’t pass that one off.

          Fuck you if you think Libya was a war.

          Let’s see… aircraft, ground soldiers, US intelligence, a coup against an autocrat who had already given up his weapons and posed no danger to US interests… kinda sounds like a war. I guess Iraq wasn’t a war either. Or Afghanistan. Or Yemen. Or Egypt. Or Tunisia.

          Congress passed a watered down Patriot Act that Obama signed.

          Poor Obama. Too bad he didn’t have a veto pen along with the one he was using to give the beaners executive amnesty.

          1. “Too bad he didn’t have a veto pen along with the one he was using to give the beaners executive amnesty.”

            And order the execution of US citizens without trial.

      3. Let’s not forget the general lies he and his ilk tell all the time. You didn’t build that, we did. I’m from the government and I’m here to help.

        1. “Progressive taxation is ‘fair’!”

          Haha. That one is my fave.

    3. Trump is the most dour humorless SOB I have ever seen.

      Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump
      Sep 30
      Try getting a new Anchor and a smarter Democrat candidate!

      The Associated Press @AP
      Sep 30
      BREAKING: The Commission on Presidential Debates says it will add new “tools to maintain order” to the upcoming debates after a chaotic first contest between President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden. #Debates2020 http://apne.ws/Rl18W25

      He’s got Joe Pesci beat hands down.

      1. I honestly feel sorry for people who can’t enjoy Trump

        1. The people who don’t find Trump funny are the people who take their politics “super-duper serial.” Basically they’re the ones who are “dour humorless SOBs” and as usual project their own shortcomings onto the object of their disdain, in this case Trump.

          1. I chuckle repeatedly while listening to All Things Considered.

      2. Nuttfuck just flings poo, he doesn’t actually care if it’s applicable.

        1. Nuttfuck just flings poo, he doesn’t actually care if it’s applicable.
          When or where is poo applicable?

            1. He said applicable, not edible.

          1. When or where is poo applicable?

            On crop fields, orchards and vineyards – usually in late autumn or early spring. Some good rain is needed to soak it into the soil.

            I’ve flung a bit of poo in my time and it does a lot of good for crops. Pro Tip: Always stand upwind when you’re flinging poo!

    4. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.

      No one is coming after your guns.

      I won’t cum in your mouth.

      The check’s in the mail.

      1. Obama.
        Obama.
        Clinton.
        Obama.

        What do I win for getting them all right?

  3. Wallace failed to moderate right from the start. Who was the first to interrupt? Biden. Wallace did nothing. Biden was just repeating his shtick when he debated Ryan. He’s a schmuck and a fucking twat. Wallace just played right into it like a good democrat soldier.

    Back to bed Biden. Here’s hoping you get the mute button. Actually better let you talk all you want. The longer the sentence the more muddy it gets.

    1. Take comfort in knowing that Wallace did his best, or something.

    2. Yeah, Biden was on his way to pulling a Rick W Perry (“I will eliminate THREE departments first day, Education, Commerce and, uhh uhhh let me think, uhhh uhhhh”) when Trump saved him by interruption.

      1. Except it would have gone more like: “I will eliminate three departments my first day, these people, they’re good people…remember, Obama and I…you know, the thing.

      2. Don’t you have a kid to diddle, turd?

        1. He at least wishes he did.

      3. Nothing could save Biden.

        Trump could have spoken the entire 90 minutes and Biden will still be seen for what he is.

        NOT President, ever.

    3. Wallace never challenged Biden when he refused to answer questions and instead made false ad hominem attacks on Trump.

      Meanwhile, Wallace repeated clearly false accusations when questioning Trump, and repeatedly interrupted Trump while he was answering with detail Wallace’s questions and whenever Trump corrected Biden’s false claims (because Wallace failed to challenge Biden’s false claims).

      Interestingly, nobody at Fox News criticized Wallace (who works at Fox News) for attacking Trump and failing to hold Biden accountable for anything.

      1. FoxNews has been barely disguised controlled “opposition” for a while now, and shitting on their audience and calling them white supremacists is going to come back to haunt them.

  4. http://twitter.com/TheDamaniFelder/status/1311694372967190536?s=19

    White supremacists never send racist messages to my inbox. But black and white liberals call me “coon” and “house nigger” every single day. So who are the actual racists again? I’ll wait.

    1. Those are just white supremacists carefully disguising themselves as liberals. Hordes of illiberal right wing Nazis are dedicated experts in false flag operations. In fact, it is all they do — even to the exclusion of any and all bona fide white supremacist activities that one would normally expect.

    2. Every racist I know over the age of 75 is black.

      1. “C’mon man!”

        Black people live to 75?

        1. “Poor kids can be just as smart as white kids”

          Joe Biden

  5. Well, Trump may be lots of things but I think we can all agree that he has his place in show business. (And I’m not just talking about his appearance in films like The Little Rascals or Home Alone 2.

    Perhaps it was a mistake for American government to take the reality show approach, but you can hardly fault Trump for being good at terrible television.

    1. And just for giggles, it’s amusing to look at Trump’s IMDB entries.

      Quite amusing indeed.

  6. http://twitter.com/ScottAdamsSays/status/1311707670391353344?s=19

    A Biden presidency with court packing plus Democrats taking over a majority in the Senate would effectively be the Chinese form of government.

    1. It’s ok, then we can have fully open borders and China can just ship 200 million people to our shore to vote themselves into power.

      I’m sure they can find 200 million true believers in a nation of 1.3 billion.

      This is what Reason-style libertarians actually believe.

      Someone should ask Dalmia how she feels about India restricting the immigration of Chinese tanks into their borders.

      1. Reason-style-libertarians would’ve shilled for the Nazis in 1930s Germany

        1. WE hate you Nazi types today. Why would 1933 be any different?

          I’m convinced you think Ayn Rand is a communist because she didn’t like conservatives either.

          1. You are really bad at context, it would seem.

            1. No, actually I don’t fear Chinese immigrants and I can speak for “Reason style libertarians”.

              A Trump style populist workingman/deplorable “anti-coolie” riot wreaked havoc in San Francisco back in 1877. It was during a 2020 type unemployment crisis like we have today. White nationalists were pissed off like you are today.

              History repeats itself. Don’t fear it.

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Francisco_riot_of_1877

              1. Trump style … in 1877

                1. As opposed to Gangnam Style…… in 1889.

              2. The San Francisco riot of 1877 was a two-day pogrom waged against Chinese immigrants

                Of course by the Democrats and Socialists:
                “Kearney first applied for membership in the Workingmen’s Party (later known as the Socialist Labor Party of America), but was denied on the basis of his outspoken public views on what he considered the “laziness” and “shiftlessness” of the working class.[4] Stymied from membership in the existing opposition political party, Kearney started a new organization of his own, the Workingmen’s Trade and Labor Union of San Francisco, which made use of the mobilizing slogan “The Chinamen Must Go!”[4] This organization changed its name in October 1877 to the Workingmen’s Party of California, of which Kearney served as president.[5] The new party retained the anti-Chinese focus and slogans of the earlier organization.

                Anti-Chinese sentiment spread throughout the United States, culminating in the effective termination of importation of Chinese workers through passage of the Democrat’s Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882.”

                Buttplug never reads his sources.

                1. Parties change ideologies you imbecile. I know you know that but don’t act stupid.

                  Trump won by conning LABOR. He might as well been in the Workingman’s Party. He conned blue collar idiots who thought he could strongman his way into favorable trade deals.

                  But us white collar techie Wall St types hate Trump and know he doesn’t know shit about trade and business.

                  If we wanted a great businessman we should have elected Bill Gates or Warren Buffet but they don’t play the con like Trump does.

                  1. Liars always claim they changed when they didn’t. Democrats are focused on race today just as they were then.

                    Youre an idiot.

                  2. Parties change ideologies you imbecile

                    No they don’t you fucking liar.
                    Only one southern Democrat switched parties.
                    The rest of you, including those who filibustered the ’64 Civil Rights Agreement, stayed Democrats until they were out of office, and remained Democrats until they died.

                    There was no switch. The record of who was in Congress proves that.

                    This is a lie perpetrated by the party of slavery, Chinese Exclusion Act, of Jim Crow, of the Black Codes, of the KKK, of segregation, of thousands of Confederate monuments placed to intimidate black people, the party of redlining, of Japanese internment camps, of destroying the black family, of creating ghettoes.

                    This is what you’re shilling for, Buttplug.

              3. And in context of India, this applies how?

              4. Are you on acid or overly distracted by child pornography?

                1. it’s never the acid’s fault.

                  1. Speaking from experience, sometimes it is the acid.

              5. Haha. For a “reason style libertarian” you sure do live in the past like a prog.

            2. “You are really bad at context, it would seem.”

              Stooopid does that to him.

          2. More coherent Buttplug:

            “We call ourselves the Good Guys and call everyone who disagrees Nazis and Racists.
            How can people not understand this? We can never do anything wrong because we’re opposing Nazis and Racists.
            It’s so simple to understand.
            Everything we do is justified because we’re the Good Guys and they’re Nazis and Racists.”

            1. You left out Orange Man Bad, but otherwise spot on.

          3. Unmm. You defend the brown shirts rioting and shame walking people.

          4. Why do you and Tony call everyone else Nazis? Absolutely silly.

        2. They kinda still shill for them in 2020s America.

          1. Yea, but they think the name change will trick their readers, whom they clearly have no respect whatsoever for.

        3. Progressives shilled for the Original nazis, why would they stop now?

          1. Progressivism = socialism = Islamism, fascism, communism, nazism = marxism

            It is collectivist rule/philosophy that attempts to create New Man via central planning and totalitarian implementation

  7. My daughter, who started watching the debate with a strong anti-Trump bias, emerged unimpressed by either candidate. She would be hard pressed to say what either of them has to offer, aside from entertainment value.

    Judges, Jacob’s daughter; one of them offers judges who, as a recent opinion piece in the WAPO described as being:

    “more likely to read statutes and the Constitution to mean what they say, and not what liberals want them to say.”

    Alex, I’ll take Trump for another 200.

  8. http://twitter.com/LeonydusJohnson/status/1311759660706340865?s=19

    Demanding that people denounce white supremacy is in the same category as the BLM activists screaming at people and demanding they chant the sacred phrase and raise their fists. This is the Church of Woke. A cultish religion. And they are determined to root out an punish heretics

    1. I disagree. The BLM demand is “agree with us or else”.

      The demand that people… Specifically Trump… Denounce white supremacists, and particularly his supporters who are labeled such, is an accusation without a predicate.

      It is a demand that says “admit that you and your team are evil”.

      The fact that people pretend that it is a serious question is the unsettling part of the whole thing. It is not serious. Demanding that Trump tell white supremacists not to riot is laughable. There are near as makes no difference no white supremacists. And even such as there are, and even if you include all Trump supporters, there are no serious threat of violence from the right. Those are all from Biden supporters. People who spent the last week saying they will “burn it down” if Trump puts a replacement for RBG on the court.

      The only honest answer is to completely reject the question.

      1. Excellent.

      2. It’s “when did you stop beating your wife?” but spiced up with some race baiting.

        There’s no good answer. If he does as they ask the narrative is “Trump finally acknowledges all his supporters are racists and has to put a leash on them”. If he doesn’t we have the existing narrative that he refuses to denounce them.

        1. I have to think Trump has significant black support. Possibly up to 40%, maybe higher.
          This white supremacy thing reeks of desperation.
          Maybe they’re worried that if they don’t have control of the bros they won’t be able to pull off their fraud?

          1. Holy Jeeby you’re an idiot. Trump is about 4-8% of the black vote.

            Here is an actual black Republican:

            Washington (CNN)Michael Steele, the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, sharply criticized President Donald Trump’s supporters on Wednesday night for their continued loyalty even as the US death toll from coronavirus nears 200,000.

            “I’m exhausted, I’m exasperated … The fact that we have to literally beg people to wear a mask to save their own dumb a** from getting sick? I’m sorry. To me, it is beyond the imagination,” Steele, who recently joined the anti-Trump group Lincoln Project, said on MSNBC.
            “And yet 40% of the country looks at it and goes, ‘Yeah, I’m with stupid.’ So, look, America, at this point, you have a stark choice. In the face of everything that is going on. I don’t know what more you can take before you say you’ve had enough. Because my heavens, this is too much for a country to go through.”

            When you lost the GOP chair you don’t have a chance.

            1. Ah, the inimitable Michael Steele — who, by the way, has not been the RNC Chair since 2011. I am certain that his gig with MSNBC and membership with the Lincoln Project are not in any way influencing the views he gets paid to air.

              Michael Steele is definitely representative of the average Republican voter .. that is, if you are an idiot that has been asleep for the past decade.

            2. Wow, that’s a great reason for him to be an ex-chair right there. Masks stop people from being sick? Wonder where he read that bit of scientific illiteracy.

              1. I guess that makes Mitt Romney the blackest Republican left.

                And I am counting Senator Scott in that.

                1. Hicklib pederasts aren’t really in a position to be invoking blood quantums.

                2. And once again a liberal proves they are racist.

                3. You trying to challenge Tony for the stupidest poster here? I’m not sure who wins at this point.

                  1. Pedo Jeffy wins

            3. who recently joined the anti-Trump group Lincoln Project

              So, another grifter who was happy to ride the Tea Party wave, and then got pissed when the people who voted for those same individuals didn’t want another neocon loser running for the Big Seat.

              The most pathetic part is this guy is now stanning for politicians whose party members literally threw Oreos at him when he ran against Ben Cardin.

            4. Michael Steele hasn’t been credible (R) for a decade.

          2. I don’t think it’s desperation, I think it’s just such a basic tenant of their playbook that we keep hearing about it regardless of it’s truth or context.

            Remember, Romney was also a white supremacist. So has every Republican candidate since…gosh I don’t even remember when. All of them in my lifetime, at least. Hell, sometimes it might have even been true but at some point they became the boy who cried wolf.

            Essentially, at no point will Democrats stop saying Republicans are racists. Ever. It’s just part of the playbook. So it’s hardly surprising they say it now, just like they said it yesterday and the day before.

            1. You’re correct about that, but this particular invoking of it is coordinated and timed.
              Why would Wallace ask that question?
              I’d love to see someone try to justify it.

    2. Biden was selling the ‘Fine People’ fake news just a few weeks ago, and I imagine he still is.

  9. You think Biden’s behavior is a response to Trump?

    How many people has Biden promised to take out behind the barn? How many people has he challenged to pushup contests?

    This is who he is. Biden is no elite. He is no intellectual.

    Biden has been screaming, red-faced for his entire career.

    Sure, he is enfeebled by age, but that has not changed who he is. He still thinks that physical threats are the way to go. A little name calling has never been beneath him.

  10. http://twitter.com/ConceptualJames/status/1311717890329063424?s=19

    This is what totalitarianism looks like. The people saying it’s not are misguided or lying.

    1. Just shut up and admit that you love Big Brother already.

      Life will be easier if you can see 5 lights.

      1. We are no joke on the precipice of totalitarianism.
        And I really don’t see any solution that’s pleasant.
        Our options are: ugly, or catastrophic.

        1. +10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000

  11. I disagree with the many critics who called the debate “unwatchable.” It was extremely watchable

    I agree with Sullum. I found it hugely entertaining. People say Trump was defensive, but he launched a verbal salvo that shows how unprepared Biden is for the schoolyard bully. If this guy cannot handle Trump, I fail to see how he can handle the radical left.

    1. Or foreign leaders like Putin or Xi.

      Which I guess is the point. To Lefties, America shouldn’t be standing up to foreign leaders.

      My wife pointed out how Trump ran over Biden like he ran over Hillary.

      Hillary lost.

      Trump knew what the strategy was and he accomplished it.

    2. Biden didn’t even get a chance to fuck up. And every time he started to stumble Trump interrupted him and bailed his ass out. Two truly impressive men indeed.

      1. Even the Lefty MSM knew Biden fucked up. They are trying to stop the next debates.

        I will link the big new story on new Republican voter registrations in swing states alarming democrats.

        1. Link tomorrow. It illustrates how unpopular Democrats are.

    3. I laughed out loud for most of the 90 minute debate.

      Trump won the debate hands down, and he did a far better job than Chris Wallace of holding Biden accountable for refusing to answer extremely important policy questions and for making false ad hominem attacks on Trump.

      Clearly the most entertaining and enlightening TV broadcast this year.

  12. That’s not the dumb Orange Man Bad nonsense we’re used to seeing here.

    If you’re not going to be shallow about appearances, then actually look at Trump’s accomplishments and the lack of new wars. He’s a lot better than any of us could ever have hoped for.

    Trump is the most demonstrably libertarian electable presidential candidate in several decades. Maybe in a century.

    1. Trump is not libertarian. Libertarian implies a governing philosophy. Trump simply does some things right. He might be instinctually “libertarian” the way the average American is, but that does not mean he’s acting from libertarian principles.

      1. Results matter more than philosophy

          1. Results are the only thing that matters.

      2. Trump is not libertarian. Libertarian implies a governing philosophy.

        Trump is libertarian, he is not Libertarian. Show me where, by libertarian precepts, you have to overtly adopt libertarianism in order to be libertarian? A good portion of the ideology shuns purity tests and acknowledges there’s no one way to become a libertarian (or, being more cynical or peevish, there is precisely one way and all you other fools are playing at libertarianism)

        1. I call Trump Libertarian-ish.

          The federal budgets were all veto-proof. Trump signed them when he could have vetoed them in a Libertarian protest. Trump and the GOP already kept the federal government shutdown the longest in US History. Trump wants to be reelected.

          Trump is trying to weigh being Libertarian-ish, Republican, and be reelected.

          I would be that second term Trump will be much more Libertarian-ish aggressive because he then has no more elections to worry about.

          1. Constitutional conservatives and libertarians should be natural allies. We have so much in common. As a conservative, gasp, an evangelical, Christian conservative, my main disagreement with libertarianism is that I think it is a bit utopian like socialism. Both tend to disregard human nature.

    2. Jimmy Carter was far more libertarian than Trump.

      Carter deregulated whole industies, airlines, energy, banking, even beer making.

      Trump added regulations on trade deals – net negative.

      Carter started no wars, came down hard on public sector unions, and never raised individual taxes – appointed a hawk Volcker to the Fed where Trump put a helicopter man in. Job creation was strong under Carter.

      Not even close. but you did say “decades” so you probably knew.

      1. Carter deregulated whole industies… energy…

        Job creation was strong under Carter.

        What the shit? Carter is the reason automobile manufacturers have mileage standards, he created the Department of Energy. He raised payroll taxes and the minimum wage. If Carter hadn’t bungled the hostage crisis, Volcker very likely would’ve still cost him the election. Either Carter, Volcker, or both were responsible for the 1980 recession that drove unemployment up to 10%.

        I’d agree that there’s reason to believe that Trump isn’t the most libertarian president in the last 100 yrs. but to act like Carter was ‘far’ more libertarian is ideologically stupid.

        1. Bullshit. Carter actually did many libertarian things despite a mixed record. Trump has done nothing libertarian unless the bar is so low that not starting another Iraq War counts.

          1. You.
            Are.
            STILL.
            Full.
            Of.
            Shit.

          2. SPB 2 citation’s always fall off.

          3. Carter actually did many libertarian things despite a mixed record.

            So, from ‘far and away the most libertarian in the last half century or more’ to ‘mixed record’? Sounds like you made my case that he’s hardly “far more libertarian” than Trump.

          4. You said nothing to refute the facts he listed. Fuck off retard.

          5. Oh, man, you just went full Tony. Never go full Tony.

      2. “Jimmy Carter was far more libertarian than Trump.”

        You.
        Are.
        STILL.
        Full.
        Of.
        Shit.

    3. Ben is correct.

      Trump is the most libertarian President of our lifetime.

      It would be even nicer if we can convince Trump to further deregulate industries (to encourage competition and reduce costs), keep abortion legal (with reasonable restrictions), decriminalize cannabis, and scale down the war on drugs, Trump would be the most libertarian US President so far.

  13. I have more respect for Trump because he wouldn’t let Wallace lead him on and he wouldn’t let Biden lie. Trump 2020

  14. http://twitter.com/selfdeclaredref/status/1311723376675901442?s=19

    they’re saying bitch boy is homophobic now? no dice, we’re takin it back.

    1. With that handle? Yeah, you are right out!

      1. Touche.

        Did you watch the video.
        It’s soccer players acting like… well, the American stereotype of soccer players

        1. I was kinda surprised that nobody flopped to the ground after hearing that somebody may’ve called somebody else something that might translate to ‘bitch boy’ in English.

  15. I wonder what ‘Corn Pop’ would have thought about this debate.?

    1. Corn Pop was a bud dude so Trump wouldn’t mouth off to him.

  16. Joe Biden has a good heart and a smart wife. That’s a good combination.

      1. No cite needed; his wife is a DOCTOR!

    1. “Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of Strazele’s nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Joe Biden.”

    2. Especially considering his ten-cent head.

    3. Unless she’s hot, no one should give a single flying fuck about a presidential candidate’s wife.

  17. The Democratic candidate actually engaged in more ad hominem attacks than his bullying, ever-interrupting opponent, who is hardly shy about tossing around personal insults.

    I don’t think that’s new for Biden or specific to responding to Trump.

  18. If your 14 year old daughter has a strong anti-Trump bias, that probably means you have a strong anti-Trump bias.

    1. She disliked them both.

      I say she has real promise as an individual and not a sheep like yourself.

      1. She disliked them both.

        You can’t read. She has an anti-Trump bias and was unimpressed. That doesn’t mean she dislikes either one and is, arguably, a win for Trump as she went from ‘anti-‘ to ambivalent.

      2. I’m creeped out by you calling me a sheep. Once you’re into one unnatural sex act, I bet the next one comes easier.

    2. If your 14 year old has strong political opinions, they’re almost certainly wrong because they are 14 and have absolutely no fucking idea about anything as a general rule.

      1. This.

        My son’s private school is shoving political discussion down their throats as if what 13 year olds have any fucking clue about anything.

        It’s very misguided to have political debates in middle school.

        1. They push political discussions because kids are too stupid to know when they’re being sold bullshit. Because they haven’t taken any classes or done any reading to inform them on the subject, and so any ‘political discussion’ they might engage in is regurgitating what they’ve been told by educators or their parents.

          The current education model of the United States doesn’t teach critical thinking until college, so what scintillating tidbits should we expect from the banking-style public education system? At best, we should expect rote recitation without any analysis (or, perhaps, regurgitated analysis still without thought).

          I.E. exactly what Sullem probably constitutes as ‘wise’ since no doubt his kids parrot what he tells them at 14. That, or their kid will take the opposite of what he believes as truth out of misguided youthful rebellion. There’s not really a whole lot of daylight between those two things, even while you occasionally will have a 14 year old capable of critical thought.

          1. Also, 14 year olds tend to have a lot going on in their lives.
            Their psyches have far greater concerns than politics.
            But the left is trying to corrupt that process – to take social, emotional, intellectual, moral, even physical development to conflate it with and direct it through politics.
            It’s real Hitler Youth/Red Guards shit, and it’s sick.

  19. >>I cautioned her that the Trump-Biden spectacle was far from typical of presidential debates

    Jeebus. Haughty dadsplain much?

  20. Trump destroyed our respect for the people who rule us but somehow Clinton, Bush and Obama didn’t. Idiots like Sullumn just can’t accept that politics is a degraded activity. They can’t get over their desire for a top man. Fucking morons.

    1. Trump was elected precisely because we have no respect for our ruling class.

      1. yep. drain the swamp.

      2. +10000

        Trump won the debate because that is why I sent him to Washington.

        To fight those fucking Lefties at every turn.

    2. Yeah, I don’t see how this debate was considerably worse or different from the Democratic Primary debates or the presidential/primary debates of 2016.

      I’d agree it’s not how debates are normally conducted but then, 6-part leading questions, moderators asking debaters if they would ban them from having abortions, and leaking the questions to Hillary aren’t exactly how debates are normally conducted anyway.

      Moreover, it should be kept in mind that if last night was between a clown show and an absurd shouting match, it was absolutely and unequivocally Wallace and/or the hosting organization’s fault. This whole “Look how hilariously shameful debaters behave.” narrative is a two-step to avoid the fact that the moderation was abysmal.

      1. This.

        But you know jornolistas aren’t going to throw shade at their own. That’s why the narrative is all about T dragging the format in to the gutter. It can’t possibly be that the moderator sucks and can’t handle his job.

        It’s the same as when a politician looks at his constituents, telling them they’re not doing a good enough job.

  21. I thought both candidates looked ridiculous. I must have TDS because I didn’t let Trump slide his dick down my throat!

    Please take Trump’s Dick out of your mouths you far right loons. It’s cutting off oxygen to your brains. Which are already dumb from incest and the nonsense you hear at whatever bullshit church you go to.

    1. TDS is not so much about what you let Trump do, but what you fantasize about Trump doing. Your post is a perfect example.

      1. It’s always straight to gay sex with those guys.

      2. I’ll be fair that is funny. I probably should of used a better analogy.

        1. Should’ve or should have. Can’t have people shouldn’ me to death.

        2. You should probably fuck off and die.

  22. The main promise of a Trump presidency was that he would destroy the respect and deference that occupants of his office automatically receive. Likewise, the main promise of presidential debates dominated by insults, interruptions, and cross-talk is that they will destroy the notion that we are ruled by wise men who know what’s best for us.

    Yeah, don’t hold your breathe. The sad truth is the majority of our fellow citizens want to “be ruled by wise men who know what’s best for us.” They don’t want freedom, they don’t want liberty, and they don’t want to have to make their own choices in life. They just want to be told what to think and feel by their self appointed betters. Once Trump leaves office, whether it’s this January or January 2025, they’ll go right back to fawning over which ever piece of shit comes after him like they’re some kind God-King/ Emperor/ Supreme Warlord of the Earth. Just begging to be ruled over like sheep.

  23. “This is so unpresidential,”

    Given that, by definition, everything Trump does is “Presidential”, we must be talking about style over substance. Which tells you about all you need to know about how seriously to take this shit.

    1. Yeah, he could cure cancer and end the national debt, but that doesn’t matter to the snobs.

      1. Or broker a handful of peace agreements between Israel and various middle eastern countries.

        That’s the real distraction here.

  24. Just a cynical take about debates, efforts to communicate policy preferences, and a great way for citizens to learn more about who the next person will be to lead our country…you know, a minor position.

    Every debate in the past offered valuable information about the differences in values and policies of the candidates. Sometimes only glimpses, which still was valuable. This didn’t. And why? Because Trump will act like a child anytime he feels pressure. And it’s those child like qualities that serves him well in his effort to destroy any process In government that doesn’t serve him. Debates included.

    That you think it’s comical to ruin those processes, which are some of the things that helped this country flourish, without offering a better alternative is admittedly a common libertarian trope. If your candidate was there and was shouted down, you’d be outraged. Or if Obama did nothing but interrupt, you’d never say “Good for him.”

    Just the latest Reason attempt to give Trump a bit of a pat on the back.

    1. If you think a Reason is patting T on the back, here or anywhere else, you’re fucking delusional.

      1. Please. If Obama carried on like that in a national debate, this website would freak out. Heck, this websites writers all had hair on fire when Obama said “you didn’t build that.”

        So when a President of this country has a national temper tantrum and actively tries to destroy a debate process, yeah, to find it all comical is an attempt to give it a pass. Shame on both Trump and Sollum.

        1. Fuckin’ LOL at this dingus pretending that the debates have been anything other than a dog and pony show for the last 20 years.

          1. Lefties are still trying to convince Americans that the MSM are principled journalists.

          2. Sounds like you’re just a tad tender! Although I agree this thread is all about childish reactions, so you’re a good fit. Enjoy your evening!

            Best,
            Jack

            1. Sounds like you’re just a tad tender! Although I agree this thread is all about childish reactions, so you’re a good fit.

              The best childish reactions were the ones when Hillary lost.

              How long did it take you to wipe up those tears from the carpet?

  25. “I cautioned her that the Trump-Biden spectacle was far from typical of presidential debates”

    Where have you been the last few decades?
    Lies like that approach child abuse.

  26. By the way…your daughter gets a pass at finding the child like Trump amusing. She is after all a child herself. No excuse for you.

    1. I’ve found him amusing *since* I was 14. Likely you’re the incorrect party.

  27. “Like Trump’s presidency, the debate destroyed unfounded respect for the people who rule us.”

    Nixon and his handling of Watergate destroyed the automatic respect for the office of the president that existed. 5-year olds going to their first day of school, while not wanting to, it was common practice to encourage the child with: “don’t you want to be president?”. I doubt that happens much since Nixon.

    1. JFK destroyed the office when he brought whores into the White House.

      Maybe it was FDR when he lied about being able to walk so Americans would not vote him out of office.

      1. Yea, but the press covered for them.
        Nixon was the first they tried to get.

  28. Likewise, the main promise of presidential debates dominated by insults, interruptions, and cross-talk is that they will destroy the notion that we are ruled by wise men who know what’s best for us.

    There is a difference between wanting to be ruled by “wise men”, and wanting to be ruled by functional adults. Not wanting presidential debates to devolve into some type of professional wrestling match is not the same as begging for wise sage leaders. Is it too much to ask that the debate candidates treat each other with a little bit of respect?

    And I agree with a couple of the other commenters here, this libertarian habit of just tearing down existing structures and institutions without advocating for any functional replacement just gets old after a while. Okay you don’t like the “traditional” presidential debates, they’re boring and stuffy. Fine, I actually agree, they are boring and stuffy. But they also serve a necessary purpose, that is, having an actual dialogue between different candidates – and therefore, different points of view – that isn’t filtered by sympathetic media. It is a civic education service. In case you hadn’t noticed, Mr. Sullum, this nation is rapidly reaching a point where there is no longer a shared reality among the body politic. How can we have any sort of functional and functioning democratic process when voters do not even agree on what reality is? So if you don’t like “traditional” debates perhaps you can suggest a replacement for the civic education function that they serve that would hopefully facilitate the creation of some sort of shared reality among different factions so that we can have some semblance of rational decision-making. If not, then all you are doing is saying “let the best demagogue win”. I think the classical scholars had a thing or two to say about the dangers of demagoguery.

    1. Well said. Better than me.

    2. Fine, I actually agree, they are boring and stuffy. But they also serve a necessary purpose, that is, having an actual dialogue between different candidates – and therefore, different points of view – that isn’t filtered by sympathetic media. It is a civic education service.

      No it isn’t. It’s been professional wrestling for decades. That you and JackoffFace are arguing otherwise is a great indication that the whole pretense has been blown apart and you’re desperately trying to put Humpty-Dumpty back together again in order to keep up the false pretense that elections are about issues, rather than about power and image.

      1. Lefties lie and say the MSM tells the truth.

        MSM hacks are propagandists for socialism and/or communism.

    3. Watching you blither about the state of discourse because your gatekeepers lost the plot and don’t know how to handle a candidate like Trump who doesn’t play their game is so absolutely fucking marvelous. I’m going to age your tears like wine and savour them over the next 4 years.

      Remember when Reason’s take was that Society is Coarser But Better? Ahh for the olden days when gay ass sex in public at the Folsom Street Fair was going to usher us into a new age of tolerance, before that loudmouth blowhard Trump went and ruined discourse in this country with his crass and coarse style.

    4. “there is no longer a shared reality among the body politic.”

      Admitting you have a problem is the first step, chemjeff.
      I doubt you have the courage or strength to take the next.

    5. “devolve into some type of professional wrestling match”

      Now this would’ve been exciting. Briefly at least. Until they both collapsed from exertion.

  29. “My 14-year-old daughter, by contrast, thought it was a gas. She watched the debate with rapt attention, laughed repeatedly, and afterward kept going on about how great it was.”

    Your daughter sounds like a dumbass and a fledgling disaffected misfit. Let’s hope she leaves home at high school graduation, never to return, and overcomes her shoddy childhood circumstances to become a well-adjusted, productive member of the American mainstream.

    1. Your daughter sounds like a dumbass and a fledgling disaffected misfit.

      Which puts her about 10 rungs above your cloven-hoofed spawn on the emotional development ladder.

    2. Or she could marry her brother and they could shit out a little paint chip eating cum pet like you.

  30. My wife isn’t a Trump fan but she thought it informative that Biden refused to answer the question about court packing.

    I can’t vote on it if I don’t know the candidates positions.

    1. Pretty much Bob Johnson’s, founder of BET, take.
      He’s voting Trump because he knows what Trump’s done and can expect him to continue.

  31. What I saw of the debate wasn’t hilarious enough. It was downright tedious for the most part. Good for the Republic? It’ll take more than a Trump-Biden spectacular to begin to solve America’s problems. And showing this tired farce to people from other countries is tantamount to treason – giving aid and comfort to the enemy.

  32. I was right about use of the epithet ‘brain dead biden,’ which was all the rage here with the pro Trump crowd a while back.

    I warned against it. I thought that even a mediocre debate performance by Biden would consign the term to the memory hole, like the one Winston Smith would use in George Orwell’s novel 1984. I was right.

    1. Biden is brain dead. He had multiple stroke on stage. His left eye shutfor 10 seconds.

      Its sad what they are doing to sleepy Joe.

      1. Cheer up, loveconstitution1789.

  33. Joe Biden has the demeanor of an overused crash test dummy held together with duct tape and bailing wire and is overdue for his appointment with the Supreme Court.

  34. Joe Biden has the demeanor of an overused crash test dummy held together with duct tape and bailing wire and is overdue for his appointment with the glue factory.

  35. If you want to watch a funny movie this night. let me offer you something more amusing. Trumph Biden presidential debate. It will surely give you many laughs.

    https://www.atlantagadivorce.com/

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