Today is the final Debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Because of my work schedule I will be able to watch only the first hour of the debate while listening to the final hour as I drive into work.

Here are some pre-debate thoughts

This is likely the last chance that Donald Trump will be able to address the American people outside of the filter of the MSM before election day. That means he needs to point the debate to items the MSM wants to ignore from the Project Veritas tapes to the Wikileaks revelations.

This is the first time that there has been a debate with a moderator from FOX. Hillary Clinton is going to have to be prepared to be actually challenged on issues by a moderator for the first time in, well forever.

It is pretty safe to assume that regardless of what actually happens at the debate the MSM as a whole will state the election over and Trump doomed.

If by some chance Hillary underperforms greatly than I guarantee the media will be unified in blaming FOX and insisting they should be excluded from now on (Even if she does well this is a likely post debate meme).

One of the myths of this election cycle has been that “If only the GOP didn’t nominate Trump the MSM would be talking Wikileaks, Project Veritas etc” I guarantee that if the Trump tapes where not out there the media would find a different reason to ignore all of the above.

Based on the CNN reactions we can assume that if the veritas tapes come up in the debates you will see the words “convicted criminal” be repeated over and over with O’Keefe.

Very curious if the National Enquirer stuff will be brought up, I’m sure Trump is waiting for Clinton to dismiss them with a “That’s what John Edwards said” line.

The apparent decision to bring James O’Keefe to the debate is an excellent idea and put the MSM in a position where they are forced to comment on the “why” thus the “convicted criminal” business.

I’d bet real money that Hillary congratulates the Cleveland Indians in her opening statement before Trump gets a chance after all Hillary operatives aside there are no votes in Toronto.

Who wants to be that most of the post debate stories of the MSM have already been 60-707% written? The only real mystery left is what the MSM meme will be to spin the results, but within 30 minutes of the end of the debate I suspect every network will be using the same one.

Took the wife to breakfast this morning after church and work and tried to sleep with no luck but eventually crashed in the afternoon and woke up to find that Donald Trump complaints about his microphone during the debate, that everyone derided him for making, were valid:

On Friday afternoon, the Commission on Presidential Debates confirmed that Trump did indeed have a microphone that was at least somewhat defective.

“Regarding the first debate, there were issues regarding Donald Trump’s audio that affected the sound level in the debate hall,” the commission said in an unfortunately brief one-sentence statement.

John Sexton at hotair says this:

I’m not going to engage in any conspiracy theories about why Trump’s mic went out but I do wonder why it took the Debate Commission until Friday afternoon to put out this brief statement admitting it happened. Clearly they knew this was a problem Monday. They also must have known it became an issue once the media began reporting Hillary’s dig about complaining about the microphone. That would have been the appropriate time for the organization responsible to come forward and admit there was in fact a problem.

Given that the debate commission’s silence for a week was a defacto in kind contribution to the Hillary Clinton campaign and their release of their statement on a Friday afternoon admitting Trump was right seemed to me in the tradition of news dumps meant for minimum exposure, I take offense at the use of the words “conspiracy theory” in that paragraph, but in all the crow eating and told ya so’s there’s an important point everyone is missing here that perfectly illustrates the difference between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

Donald Trump has decades of experience in broadcasting and because of that experience he was able to recognize a defective microphone in front of him and had no problem saying it was so in the face of the derision of everyone else around him.

Hillary Clinton has decades of experience in government at the highest possible levels yet was not only unable to recognize her handling of classified material as defective, but kept insisting it was proper even anyone who had any experience in handling such info knew it wasn’t.


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by baldilocks

I did not watch last night’s debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. For the record, I didn’t watch Monday Night Football either; I had a third option.  The specifics of my option do not matter, but that I had more than two options with respect to how I chose to occupy my time is glancing commentary on the election itself.

And here is some commentary that does more than merely glance: “we” managed to pick two candidates—one from each party who are willing to violate the Second Amendment.

I won’t even bother quoting Mrs. Clinton’s stance on the right to bear arms, but here’s an example of Mr. Trump’s position with respect to the topic. From the debate:

The back-and-forth between Trump and debate moderator Lester Holt about the legality of New York City’s now-defunct stop-and-frisk policy is irrelevant. That Trump wants to take guns away from “bad people” is what matters.

Who are the “bad people” and how does a law enforcement agency determine the alleged badness of “bad people?” By how they look? That sounds like the evil, dreaded profiling to me.stopanfrisk_590_356

What about probable cause and the fourth amendment? I know that it’s likely that I’m speaking a language that is foreign to Mr. Trump.

What was that bon mot about liberty versus security? Oh, yes…

They who can give up liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.

There’s some doubt about whether this is an actual Benjamin Franklin quote, but that doesn’t matter. And, in reality, whether a given set of people deserve liberty and safety or not is also irrelevant. (‘Deserve’ is one of my least favorite words.)

What needs to be faced is that we have no major candidate for president who is a true proponent of the freedom of self-defense. Whether we deserve freedom or security or we don’t, both are in grave danger.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s JOB:  Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>>baldilocks

screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-9-04-05-amFor all of the true debaters out there, let’s face it: this was not an actual debate.

The American Debate Association describes how a debate is supposed to work. The debate focuses on a statement, such as “The United States needs a new tax system to create jobs.”

For example, Donald Trump gets first crack in the affirmative, followed by Hillary Clinton in the negative. Each has nine minutes to discuss the question rather than the two-minute soundbites of last night’s debate. Then each one gets to question the other. Then the two debaters get to rebut the other’s argument.

The argument is between the two parties rather than through a moderator. In fact, in an actual debate, there is no moderator. The judges are supposed to stay out of the way.

Since I was in high school, these rules have been the standard. I have no idea why presidential debates don’t use this approach.

It’s probably because the longstanding rules for debate would probably bring more substance without the useless presence of some media darling who has virtually no expertise in the area of domestic and foreign policies.

Despite my misgivings about the format and substance of last night’s debate, I generally think it was a draw, which probably works in Donald Trump’s favor. The MSM gives the nod to Hillary, but that’s not unexpected.

Trump did a relatively good job of explaining his policies on trade and policing, but he fumbled through his response on the birther issue. He rambled as he often does. But he had the best line: Hillary has a lot of experience, but it’s bad experience.

Clinton failed to move the needle on what to do about the self-proclaimed Islamic State and race relations. At times, she seemed robotic.

On more “substantive” matters that usually decide who won and who lost the debate, Trump’s audio was bad at many times during the discussion; both had terrible makeup jobs; the split screen clearly favored Clinton.

What’s amazes me is that the moderator, Lester Holt, failed to ask any substantive questions about emails, Benghazi or the Clinton Foundation. If anything underlines how unnecessary a star moderator is, Holt’s avoidance of certain issues demonstrates why actual debates don’t have moderators.

Howard Kurtz of Fox News provided a relatively good analysis of the debate at http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/09/26/clinton-scores-by-staying-on-offense-trump-by-sticking-to-serious-issues.html

Kurtz argued that Clinton stayed on the offensive while Trump countered with serious issues.

As CBS’s Bob Schieffer put it: Trump didn’t lose any voters; Clinton didn’t gain any.

That seems about right to me.


Christoper Harper, a recovering journalist from The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law.

I’m not going to get a chance to see the entire debate tonight because of work but here is what things are going to come down to one thing: Will the caricatures of the two candidates be confirmed or refuted.

1. Trump: Is he crazy, is he presidential?

These two questions are what the American people want the answer to. Hillary Clinton the media and the left (but I repeat myself) has been trying to sell Donald Trump as an uncontrolled loon for the last year or so, completely unprecedented and unable to deal lead. That caricature took a huge hit thanks to his mexican trip whose live feed completely disappointed the left has the Donald not only sounded strong but competent. While this was no surprise to me as a person who is running business on an international scale has to know how to deal with foreign leaders this is totally contrary to what the MSM has said.

The goal for Donald Trump therefore is to appear presidential enough on TV to make a lie of this. I predict that he will have very little trouble doing so due to his massive TV experience.

2. Clinton: Is she corrupt, is she well?

There have been two memes with Hillary Clinton that has been out there, the first is corruption, while the email scandal has not had legs with the MSM it HAS with voters. Clinton needs to give answers that suggest there is no there there. This should actually not be a hard thing to do as she has decades of experience dissembling before reporters, however it is the viewing audience and not the press that she has to sell this too. My gut says she should be able to do this but the real question is, have her consultants prepped her for the press or the people? That will be the determining factor.

The second factor can’t be wargamed. Clinton’s health. I’m sure that Hillary has rested herself to the max and her medical and makeup team will have put out full effort to make sure that she is in the best physical shape possible or tonight.

All that being said if she starts coughing, if she starts to fall, if anything happens that says “unwell” that will be the final nail in the coffin for her. This is the overriding factor above all else. Can she manage to stand there for 90 minutes without seeming ill?

I predict she will manage to do so but the reality is we have no idea on this. It is the wild card in this debate.

The Clinton advantage MSM: The biggest advantage for Hillary Clinton is the MSM. As long as Hillary Clinton doesn’t cough up a lung, start drooling on the stage or physically collapse, the media will pronounce her well and declare her the victor in tonight’s debate. It doesn’t matter what she says or how she says it this is going to be the media narrative that the press will be selling.

The Trump Advantage the audience: It appears this is going to be one of the most watched debates in the history of history. A large amount of people who would not normally bother will politics will be drawn to it. Furthermore I suspect most of those people will not be bothering with much of the pre-debate or post-debate coverage. This means that Trump will have an excellent change to make his case directly to the people, particularly those who will not be bothering with the post-debate spin. If he doesn’t commit an obvious gaffe, and by gaffe I mean something that normal people, not the media, not the media, consider a gaffe. He will be fine.

My prediction. Barring a physical collapse by Hillary, this debate is going to be pretty much a wash by normal debate standards. However a wash in the debate is a win for Trump because the main question in the mind of people who don’t like Hillary is: Is Trump Qualified. If he passed that bar, he win…

…it should be pointed out that the MSM is going to declare Hillary the victor in this debate (again barring a physical collapse) I wouldn’t be surprised if most of those stories have already been written and just need the odd bit of space filled in. Howie Carr has nailed it:

Whatever happens on Long Island, Hillary will immediately be declared the winner by 98 percent of the press. The headlines are already written, the phony-baloney polls and focus groups are ready to roll.

Hillary has to accomplish only two feats in Hempstead. The first one is to get off a couple of canned zingers for her adoring fans in social media to run with Tuesday morning.

What’s the over/under on how many minutes it will take her to say, “I’m a grandmother”? Comrade Chris Matthews and Andrea Mitchell will lap it up with a spoon. Oh, she so humanized herself, blah blah blah.

Hillary’s second task may prove more daunting: She has to remain vertical for 90 long minutes, with no oxygen mask or iron lung up there on the stage.

Alas for the Clintons we live in an age where people will have already formed their opinions and shared them online long before the pundits are able to push these stories.

Update: PowerLine reports they are getting panicked fundraising requests and says

with a hundred million people set to tune in to tonight’s debate, the Democrats have even more to worry about: what if millions of those viewers don’t find Trump scary or dangerous, and they see no reason to consider him a “racist, sexist bigot”? If I were a Democrat, I’d be worried too.

I’m enjoying this much too much.


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