Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Chattering Classes Were Not Amused

The Politico asks whether last's night debate was the "worst ever."

Northwestern Journalism Professor Alan Schroeder:

The Nashville event was not the worst debate ever, but it definitely qualifies as the worst of the five general election town hall meetings that have taken place since 1992.

New York University Historian Diane Ravitch:

Both candidates spouted the same by-now stale slogans and rhetoric. Neither had anything new to say. Both pointed fingers to blame the other for everything that is wrong in the nation and the world. Neither xpressed a genuine emotion or uttered an original thought or expressed a memorable line for future generations. This "debate" was just plain boring.

And the most memorable quip from Washington lobbying powerhouse Tom Korologos:

Probably, but can’t say THE worst, since I didn’t see any of the Martin Van Buren debates.

I certainly didn't feel the same way. I thought it was a low key, fairly civil discussion where the candidates talked to real people rather than some self important journalists or a studio audience.

Instead, I agree with Harvard Business School prof Rosabeth Moss Kanter:

What’s the standard for a good debate? Memorable zingers? Blood on the floor? Instant solutions to crises, in 2-minute packages? That’s not my standard. What this debate lacked in reality TV entertainment, it made up for in showing the contrasts between how the candidates think and therefore their instincts as potential leaders in troubled times.

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