Friday, October 12, 2012

Ryan's P90X Vs Joey-B's 12oz Curls

Last night, the Vice Presidential candidates sat-down, literally, to debate the issues, and the non-issues, in the one and only VP debate of the 2012 election.

Though polls and pundits on both sides have their opinions on the outcome, it was a much closer debate than the  first Obama-Romney tete-a-tete. My analysis gives Ryan the win I predicted, but barely. The debate was close. CNN's poll judged the results as Ryan over Biden 48 to 44. I would call it closer, 47 to 45, a statistical tie. The edge, at that point, goes to the contender as the incumbent should have automatically polled higher.

One aspect of this debate rings significant. From the beginning, the moderator, Martha Raddatz, seemed to be leading Joey Biden, almost feeding him talking points. In contrast, her questions toward Ryan took a more accusatory tone. Lehrer, in contrast, was more  balanced and professional. Martha unethically used her role as moderator to pontificate her own views on issues rather than sit as an unbiased referee for the competitors. Martha also diverted from the real issues, distracting into issues of religion and abortion. The truth is that the majority of Americans do not see abortion as a key issue for our country. Of course, this is what we have come to expect from the so-called Mainstream Media.

Again, one major contributing factor to the debate scoring were demeanor and body language. Obama's looking down and appearing like a scolded child lost the debate for him as much as his inability to justify his poor record. Biden was much less a push-over, to the point he came across, instead, as a playground bully. Bullies have no credibility with US Citizens.

For those who missed the debate, which was largely anti-climatic (my fiancee fell asleep), I'll present sort of a highlight of  the play-by-play.

The first question, to Biden, was concerning the terrorist attack in Libya. Martha asked (leading with the question) if the tragedy was an intelligence  failure. Joey took that lead and said it was. He  took the opportunity to finger-point at the intelligence community. He used some strong speech to indicate that the administration intends to track down and punish those responsible. He then touted Obama's (poor) handling of Iraq and Afghanistan in order to present a message of strength. Of course, he had to claim that Obama killed Usama bin Laden. The truth is that operation was years in the making. Valerie Jarrett successfully convinced Obama to take no action several times before Obama gave a guarded "go  ahead". Obama also insured that, should the mission have failed, he would be blameless. Joey also claimed Obama approached those issues with a clear head and vision.

Without knowing the facts, the appearance would be that Biden took that round. Once the judges do some fact checking, that perception fails. However, in the moment of the debate itself, Biden did land a few blows.

Ryan countered with the truth. The State Department and members of the intelligence community displayed evidence to congress that demonstrated that it was a terrorist attack. They showed that the executive branch, including the President, were duly warned but failed to take appropriate actions. It was not an intelligence failure but an operational one. Ryan answered the Iraq point by highlighting the fact that Biden failed  to generate a Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with Iraq.

Factually, Ryan won the argument, but his more gentle demeanor was overshadowed by Biden's more fiery rhetoric. Biden edged the debate points, in the moment.

Martha then tried to tie up Ryan by confronting him with the "apologist" meme that is popular among conservatives. Ryan answered, simply, "yes". Obama, instead of condemning the Libya attacks apologized for a video, blaming our 1st Amendment. Obama apologized to Asad and called him a "reformer" despite evidence that he is a tyrant and a despot.

Joey had no reply. He attempted a "zinger" claiming  that Ryan was full of "Malarky". He attempted to blame Ryan for cutting the budget. That is false since there has been no budget passed since Obama and Biden took office. Joey then displayed a lack of insight into Arab Culture in not understanding how apologizing is construed as "weak". Joey then claimed  that Obama has made nice-nice with Iran, and diminished their threat potential in doing so. The truth is that Iran's tyrants have no respect for Obama. Joey also touted that Obama has been like Nixon, and made China our friend (China is NOT our friend). Joey claimed that Obama has strengthened our alliances. The truth is that our alliances with the UK are poorer since Obama returned the gift of Churchill's bust.

Biden claimed that the intelligence community changed its story after the fact. However, there are diplomatic cables that show otherwise, to include ones describing  the increasing threat in Libya and requesting the US Marine detachment be returned to full strength.

Martha then continued her snaring attempts, asking Paul Ryan about apologizing for certain questionable acts such as the Quran burning and the urination on enemy corpses. Ryan agreed that actions, like those, which are done by the military or other representatives of the executive branch should come with an apology. However, a private citizen's video should not. It's Obama's job to stand up for our citizens, not to finger-point, blame them, and apologize.

Ryan did miss a few key points in his statement. These points would have served well to put Martha in her place. The Qurans were not burnt as some psychological warfare attempt to demoralize and insult Muslims. The fact is those books were already desecrated by the terrorists who wrote messages, plans, and hate-filled diatribes into the margins. If a Quran is desecrated, the proper disposal is by burning. As for the urinating incident, while disgusting and seemingly disrespectful, there was a pragmatic reason. The bodies needed to be returned to the families. Those involved had no means available to transport the bodies. Urinating on them keeps the bodies from being savaged by animals. While a poor decision (and an even worse decision to put the actions on video), the reasons behind it were good ones. Obviously Martha, with all of her "international" experience has no knowledge of basic field-craft.

Ryan did get the opportunity to reveal the fact that al-Q'aeda is not defeated. Obama believes he personally cut the head off of a snake. The reality is that he sent others to remove the largest head from a hydra. Another head has already grown in its place. Probably two have replaced it. AQ is active in North Africa, Somalia, Yemen, Libya, Egypt, and South America.

The next question concerned Iran, nuclear weapons, and policies for using military action.

Ryan stated that we must not let Iran have nuclear weapons. The reality is that should they acquire them, they will use them. They will use them against Israel, Iraq, the UK, and the US. The sanctions have been ineffective. Those stronger sanctions that congress passed despite  the Obama administration were "watered down" by the state department defaulting them to the UN and Russia's influence with the security council.

Biden claimed that the the GOP-sponsored sanctions were too restrictive and would have instigated war if not "watered down". Biden and Obama are "confident" we could defeat Iran, even after drawing down our active military force. He believes that Iran is not close to developing nuclear weapons because they have not tipped a hand displaying missile capabilities. What Biden fails to address are the possibilities for deployment in suitcase nukes or atomic car-bombs. Biden tried  to pass the concept of Iranian nukes as a boogeyman.

Ryan hit back addressing the evidence that Iran's program has accelerated, not decelerated. Obama, in response, has distanced his administration from our allies in the region such as Israel (and Jordan). Ryan purported that it will take negotiating from a position of perceived strength in order to incentivize Iran to change its policies and program.

Joey stated that the Ayatollah just sees his people hurting and starving under the US Sanctions, attempting to display the tyrant as some benevolent ruler. Sorry, Joey, nobody is buying that line of BS.

Biden then stated that the US will act militarily only with the support of the UN and the world. This should scare every American, the fact that Biden wants to subjugate our national sovereignty to the UN. Biden was more attempting to lobby for ratification of  the dangerous Agenda-21 treaties than to debate how, constitutionally, the USA should decide to declare war. There are no provisions to request UN permission in the Constitution.

Biden also claimed that Obama doesn't lie, ever. The fact is that Obama has lied several times. He lies when he claims that he killed UBL. He lied to Americans and to the UN when he stated that the assassination of our Ambassador to Libya was over a video. He lies when he says that the PPACA will make healthcare more accessible and affordable.

Next the two candidates debated unemployment and the economy. At this point, Biden channeled his inner-union-negotiator-thug. His composure, which was already waning, mostly disappeared. I kept expecting Biden to slap Ryan, since Biden had no logical or reasonable argument.

Joey claimed that Obama's policies will get unemployment under 6%. Four years ago, he claimed it would never get above 8%. He claimed that Obama saved GM. GM is still in trouble. All he and Joey did was bail out the socialist-collective called the UAW. Joey claimed that he personally refinanced homes for millions of Americans and saved them from foreclosure. Biden claimed that Romney doesn't pay taxes (despite the fact Romney has released his tax records that demonstrate otherwise, and paid more than he had to since  Mitt did not claim deductions or exemptions for all of his charitable donations). Joey then claimed that those who actually earn  should pay their "fair share" (which, according to the socialists, is to pay much more than those who don't earn -- 47% of whom do not, in fact, pay federal income taxes).

Ryan countered with something Joey and Obama hate:  facts. Unemployment is still higher than when Obama took office. The Workforce Participation rate is at one of the lowest levels it has been since it started being tracked. Gross Domestic Product is abysmal and should be 3-4 percentage points higher than it is. This administration has done more to retard recovery and stagnate the economy than it has to invigorate it.

Joey restated Romney's 47% gaffe, misquoting it in his hyperbole. Joey then stated, in summary, that Romney makes no commitment to collectives of socialist-created special-interest groups that want special treatment. Joey served  as a demagogue to collectivist thought and displayed his disdain for the very individual, natural rights upon which our country is founded. Though using other words, Biden basically restated his policy to "get individuals out of the way and make room for communist collectivism".

Ryan confronted Biden on being in charge of stimulus spending which generated over 100 criminal investigations for fraud over so-called  "green energy" contracts and subsidies. Among those subsides were ones that went to non-US companies in places such as Finland and China instead of stimulating US companies such as it was alleged to do.

Joey tried to bring into evidence two letters Paul Ryan wrote in support of two Wisconsin-based businesses that sought to receive stimulus subsides. Ryan was not assertive enough in making his point that, while he did write those letters of support, he did not support the stimulus bill. However, since it had passed, he sought to use that legislation for its intended purpose.

Let's take a moment to state that this should not be an issue. Government revenue should not be used to invest in private business or to subsidize it. It should only be used to pay private companies the federal government contracts to perform services to the government. Even those services should be ratified by congress before being allocated or spent.

Next Martha tried to lead Biden to score some points in favor of the PPACA and Obama's policies on Medicare. First she tried, ineffectively, to snare Ryan.

Ryan addressed Social Security's and Medicare's path towards bankruptcy. They require reform. Ryan supports those safety-net programs. The fact is that the PPACA takes billions away from Medicare and leaves the care of seniors to be decided by a panel of 15. That panel is directed to seek cost-effective means of alleviating symptoms, not providing true treatment and care. Ryan argued  that his plans will work far better than the PPACA while the PPACA and all other socialist suggestions contain no credible solutions.

Joey brought up the fact that the socialist organization of useful idiots known as the AARP supports the PPACA. He then claimed that privatizing social security into individual accounts won't work, despite the fact that Galveston County, TX has proven that they will work, and work better than the current system.

As Joey became less reasonable and more combative, Ryan explained that Biden is using one of Alinsky's tactics, something that Obama stated as a strategy in 2008:  "If you have no record to run on, make the other guy somebody the masses want to run from". It is evident that Biden was afraid that Romney and Ryan have real solutions that will work. It is more evident that Biden is afraid of his own record of failure.

Ryan then confronted Joey with the basic principles of  the Laffer Curve. Biden had already boasted about sitting in meetings with Tip O'Neil and Ronald Reagan. He must be getting senile since he denies those very policies he was part of putting into effect in 1983. It is a fact that it is better to widen the tax base (the number of those taxed) while reducing the individual tax burden (tax rate). Doing so will generate more overall revenue while reducing the burdens upon those who earn. Joey countered by stating, in summary, that it is better to steal from those who earn, currently, than to increase the number of earners.

Biden became more belligerent and condescending as he attempted to justify the poor tactic of informing the enemy when you will stop fighting and leave. He also showed his lack of knowledge of the principles of war, to include the necessity for flexibility. He claimed that announcing a pull-out two years ahead of time, and setting it in stone is not "telegraphing" or "inflexible".

Next, the discussion went back to Libya and Syria. Biden again demonstrated the fact he failed geography when he claimed  that Syria is larger than Libya. The fact is that Libya is over nine times the size of Syria.

The next few questions delved into Religion, Abortion, and other distracting memes that have nothing to do with the important issues.

The only answer in this segment of note was when Ryan stated, concerning abortion, that the issue should be decided constitutionally, through legislation, or left, per the tenth amendment, for the states to decide. Biden attempted to argue with Ryan as though he made a claim that abortion should be abolished. Ryan did not make any such claim or statement. Red-faced and smirking, Biden made himself look like a fool in his response to a question that was designed to both bolster him and trap Ryan.

Paul Ryan's closing remarks were the best part of the final segment of the debate.

On performance and appearance, Ryan remained calm and collected, even when confronted with remarks and evidence he was apparently not prepared to confront. In contrast, Biden was not prepared. He was angry. He was ill-mannered and disrespectful. He was belligerent. He came across looking like a mobster instead of a Vice President. Biden interrupted Ryan between 82 and 96 times. (Reports from those who counted vary between those numbers). It was as though Joey forgot this was an election debate and thought filibustering was allowed. In the end, Biden complained that Ryan was given more time though the clocks displayed that Joey had over a minute more speaking time.

To recap, Biden nailed Ryan with the "stimulus letters". His opening few answers, though I disagree, were strong. Ryan was not as well prepared, and it showed, though he held his own. Biden's demeanor and composure didn't disappoint, though he didn't throw one of his classic tantrums. Biden tried to argue emotionally , attempting to claim Ryan was lying instead of presenting facts, but had no facts to support the contrary.

The moderator was less than professional. She used the debate as a platform to demagogue her own political agenda instead of moderating a debate over the issues of the campaign. Her bias was not veiled, but blatant. A better moderator would have been somebody who could have put personal political ideology aside and moderated from an objective, true journalistic point of view. This debate may have been more pertinent if it had been moderated by somebody like Jamie Dupree. If the commission is unable to find an objective moderator, then they should have used two, like Martha and somebody to balance her, like Sean Hannity or Neal Boortz.

There was no knock-out. There was no TKO. This fight went all fifteen rounds and to the judges for decision. The decision was split. In the end, though, it wasn't so much that Ryan won. It was more that Biden lost. However, the victor was Ryan.