Monday, October 03, 2011

Pondering public displays of ignorance by debate audiences…

Shall we?

I just read this piece on Talking Points Memo about the latest public display of ignorance at a Republican debate and it got me thinking about the benefit of live debates and the public behavior they often capture.

Used to be that debates captured shit like President Nixon sweating out his nerves or President Bush the 1st looking bored as hell and checking his watch.

But in recent years debates have become televised shows where a bunch of people wait for their chance to toss in a quotable zinger that they hope will give them an edge…and trust a bitch when I say that these people practice the zingers like a tennis player practices her serve.

The result is boring as hell if watched live and only sorta-interesting if consumed in sound bite form.

With one notable exception – the natural reactions from the audience.

Back in the day, GOP minions worked their asses off to make sure audiences were packed with loyalty oath screened folks who presented a positive frame for the party to showcase their candidates and eventual nominee.

Now…well, um…hmmm.

As Evan McMorris-Santoro points out in his TPM post, the GOP debates have turned into Home Training Fail case studies. GOP debate audiences have enthusiastically cheered the fact that Texas has executed 234 people while Rick Perry has been Governor and screamed their support of allowing a hypothetical uninsured cancer victim to rot and die.

And now we have GOP audience members booing a soldier currently serving in Iraq because he is gay and asked a question about Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

My people call that disgraceful.

Pause…sip coffee…continue.

My first thought was that the GOP minions have lost their touch and that clearly they have not been screening audience members they way they used to.

But then I gave this outbreak of boorish GOP audience behavior some additional thought…and I cruised through some websites and blogs favored by those who adore tea, where I noted that contributor and comment-makers were thrilled by these outbursts…and it occurred to me that the GOP may be letting the audience send a message to the base that they don’t want their nominee sending lest she or he disgust the rest of the electorate.



Li'l Em-Kel said...

That "Pause...sip coffee...continue" part was neat. Really warm and humanizing.

Nice work.

NicoleA said...

As I've said before, they are just....showmen. They aren't even really debating issues really but giving a show. Showing their ass if you must... I remember the first debate, they were bashing Obama b/c they knew that's what the audience would react to and applaud. Then, they talked about jobs...

I just think they all want to appeal to their audience by exploiting their ignorance and beliefs and not necessarily put forth any real plan of action. If people were more educated, they would look at who is funding these folks' campaigns and what are some likely favors they are asking for once that candidate hits the oval office.

I can go on but that would lead me off topic, lol.

In all, love your post, love your blog and I plan to check it out further.

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