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Presidential Debate Thread

If you want to talk about it, please do so in comments to this post.


October Covid Update


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  1. Thomas B Golladay

    Trump came swinging and Biden was wrecked. And Trump was right, Joe can’t explain why he and Obama didn’t do a thing when they had a chance.

  2. anon

    I’m watching the debate on the NYTimes website and reporters are so incredibly bias. Sure, refute all the lies Trump is saying, but also point out when Biden is lying and when Trump is making a valid point about the atrocious crime bill and immigration policy of Biden and Obama. The NYTimes has a very hard time being balanced and it is obvious. This is not how journalism should work. I say this as a progressive who held my nose and voted for Biden. I am no Trump apologist, but Trump has made some excellent points tonight about Biden and Obama’s hypocrisy. If Trump had acted this way in every debate, he might be in the lead right now.

  3. anon

    Biden doing what he usually does. He craps on progressives, universal health care, and fracking. If this were a normal election year with no COVID-19, Biden would end up as Hillary 2.0. Progressives are only voting for him because of how badly Trump has dealt with the pandemic.

  4. Hugh

    Trump repeated several times that he had done more for African Americans than any President since Lincoln. So I think he has wrapped up their vote. Even though the coronavirus has devastated the economy Trump somehow tried to take credit for how well the economy was doing. As for the virus, despite the surge in cases, the virus is going away. So another problem Trumpsolved. Looks like clear sailing from here. The economy sucks, more people are dying from covid. What can I say? Oh yeah, MAGA. See, all better.

  5. Thomas B Golladay


    Blame the Democrats for rigging the Primary and doing uncompensated lockdowns with no real enforcement.

    As it is, Norpoth, and all scientific polls show a Trump Victory. In my home state Biden is losing in Muskegon and Macomb, those go Trump, Detroit doesn’t matter. Hillary won those areas, but Detroiters stayed home and the Sault turned Trump.

    Trump has this in the bag despite all his fuckups.

  6. js

    Nah the why didn’t you do anything when you had a chance falls flat, because it just begs the question why Trump hasn’t done anything worthwhile in 4 years he has been not VP like Biden, but President. Really not a road one wants to go down. At best they both end up covered in mud, but noone comes out swinging from talking about records.

  7. js

    Lockdowns were only ever done at the state level, there were no national lockdowns, states don’t have the financial ability to do compensated lockdowns.

    Oh I’ll vote on more robust state level financing to increase state ability to handle what comes with better tax revenue, but realistically, states are not the Fed gov. and aren’t going to be.

  8. Thomas B Golladay


    Trump is shameless and wallows in the mud, glorifying it. Its how he gets away with it. He even parades his skeletons with him. He is a scrapper, he’ll leave blood on the floor. You need a real FDR or Eisenhower type to beat him down.

    This shows how you do polls properly. They need to be short, anonymous, and you have to really dig to find the voters. The other polls aren’t doing this and are missing large swathes of Trump voters who will show up and swing this election to Trump.

  9. Hugh

    Thanks, Thomas, how Trumpian. Ignore reality and blame somebody else.

  10. Hugh

    “he’ll leave blood on the floor.”

    But as Trump is a physical coward, not a drop of it will be his. Now dead bodies and lots of them, he’ll leave plenty of those but that’s his non-response to covid.

  11. Willy

    @ Trumpsolved!

    Gives me an idea for a new old school board game. It’ll come complete with a wig, MAGA cap, and a wify that’ll link to god knows where (batteries not included).
    @ “Norpoth, and all scientific polls”

    I took a few moments to investigate this “Norpoth” of which we speak.

    Norpath’s model is simple. It uses presidential primaries and the current election cycle. One variable is determined by voter enthusiasm for candidates during presidential primaries, and then first term incumbents are given extra weight in another variable, since history demonstrates that party pendulum swings only last two terms max. Apparently that’s about it for the variables.

    So Norpath used all the elections from 1912 to 1996 to help determine his model, then ran the model against elections from 1912 to 1996 and got perfect results. Seems fishy to me, but whatever floats his boat.

    He then ran the model for the six subsequent elections, claiming to accurately predict 4 and mis-predict both 1960 and that 2000 hanging chad debacle. IMHO, he also mispredicted 2016 where he claimed that Trump would beat Hillary 54.7 percent to 45.3 percent in the popular vote. Of course Hillary won the popular vote and Trump won electorally. So IMHO, he actually got 3 right and 3 wrong, and not 25 out of 27. If he wants to include all those other years going back to 1912, then more power to him, though I don’t think that’s entirely how science is supposed to work.

    I may make my own “scientific” prediction based on all the other scientific predictions which I”m hoping that Thomas B Golladay shall provide. I’m thinking of calling it the “Gittin Nitpickety With Norpath” (GNWN) model (although the “Tommy Blinded Me With Science” model name seems catchier). We shall see.

  12. Willy

    Fascinating Thomas B.

    I’ve never heard of the “Trafalgar Group”, though I’m intrigued by the polled person who claims they didn’t vote for Trump, when they actually did, because they were just too ashamed to publicly claim that they did. This seems to conflict directly with the Norpath model, which heavily weights primary voter enthusiasm as its primary variable. Norpath doesn’t talk about mystery voters.

  13. Johnathan P Goldmarker III, esq.

    My take on the debate:

    I am very smart. I turned on my digital computer machine on and logged on to an electronic BBS system and very cleverly entered letter correspondence that appeared to be what the kids were thinking about but then in the end it had a meaning that was hard-right right wing awesomeness. I am very smart because I do not care if Trump is a charlatan and a con man who will crush any dignity or unity the nation once had, I just know that I can make money and stick it to the libs. I am very smart because I have facts about heinous crimes that have thousands of circular references. Literally thousands. I am very smart.

  14. Thomas B Golladay


    Go after the DNC and Neoliberal Elites, not me. They are the ones who gave us Trump. Frankly I have no problems with Trump winning again and burning our black mold infested house down. At least then we can start from scratch.

    But the DNC must burn with the house.

  15. Willy

    The part where Trump burns it all down so we can start from scratch sounds good in theory. But I know a few Iranians who tried to burn their own down, with unpredictably disastrous results. But after they got the hell out of Iran and moved to the states, they seem to be doing alright. It’s always something.

  16. Ché Pasa

    Welp, I was in and out of the room doing important and necessary things while the shitshow was on the teevee. It was the first televised performance of the candidates I’d actually watched much if not most of. Usually I just sample a bit of them after the fact.

    Trump behaved most of the time, and things seemed to move more or less as had been planned by the moderator. She, for her part, did the best that could be expected under the circumstances, actually nudging the candidates forward as opposed to trying to slap them around or shame them into something like competence.

    Neither candidate was presented with “hard questions.” Interesting, that. Trump occasionally went on his usual tangents, but then seemed to realize they were falling flat and allowed himself to be guided back on topic, at least momentarily.

    Old Joe was… old. Obviously knowledgeable about many, many things, still pretty sharp and clear headed most of the time, he got lost several times and had a harder and harder time getting back on track as the entertainment wore on. It’s not that he wasn’t alert, it’s that he couldn’t sustain a train of thought long enough.

    For his part, Trump didn’t try. He’s like a lawn sprinkler, twirly and spraying all over the place. Whatever. His efforts to smear Old Joe through Hunter got nowhere, and he seemed puzzled by it. Why weren’t people up in arms about the millions and billions in Corrupt Biden Family Cash? He doesn’t see how obvious it is that smearing Biden for corruption merely turns the mirror back on his own massive corruption problem. It’s not gonna work in his favor. Nope.

    Also, like always, much of what he accuses his opponent of is simply false. Oh well.

    I don’t think I learned anything from either candidate that I didn’t know already, and I’m not inclined toward either of them. They both represent a past that we need to be done with. We should have been done with it a long time ago, but no, it just lingers on and on and on. The longer it lingers, the more tragic the reality becomes.

    Our entire leadership class is sclerotic and out of touch. More horribly, they care not a whit about anything outside their bubble. Things are going to be bad, getting worse for most of us no matter who sits on the throne, and nothing I saw last night changed my mind about that.

    I’ve already voted, so my electoral task is done for this cycle.

  17. Plague Species

    Note how the Dems frame Trump. Not as a mendacious, malevolent, recalcitrant criminal that he is, but rather as a “bad POTUS” who just couldn’t grow into the job. Forgiveness is in the pipeline. Afterall, Trump couldn’t help it, he just wasn’t cut out for the job.

    Progressives want justice for Trump’s many crimes, me too in fact, but there will be no such thing. Biden is emulating Obama as the Unifier In Chief. We must look forward and not back.

    One such crime in plain sight is Trump and his criminal family raiding the campaign coffers.

    Trump and his family have been using this shell company to siphon off the campaign funds, at least a billion or more, and sequestering the money in offshore accounts. They know they’re going to lose the election and they’re making sure they’re not left high and dry so they’re milking it for all it’s worth. The Trump organization is a criminal organization. It’s a con. The Art of the Con.

    At this rate, Biden will not only not prosecute Trump and his family for their many crimes, but instead will make Trump part of his cabinet no doubt. Maybe Secretary of State. Or Attorney General. Or Surgeon General.

    See? Biden is about partisanship and unity and decency and healing. He is the Gerald Ford redux. He will show America and Donald Trump how a REAL Republican president should act and behave because that’s what Joe truly is — a Republican. Kushner will be Biden’s Treasury Secretary. Ivanka will be Biden’s Chief of Staff. Barron Trump will be bequeathed a spot on the board of Burisma.

    We are family…………all my……………..

  18. Ten Bears

    Breaking news: [NBC/ComcastCorp] The US reported a single-day record Thursday of 77,640 new cases of the Trump Flu. The previous record was 75,723 on July 29.

    See, it’s going away. Up is down, yes is no, one zero, black white … hey look over there! that boney, bottle-blonde, neurotic no doubt sexually frustrated white woman isn’t wearing any underwear!

    As to last night, drumpf uck didn’t reach down its pants and reassure itself its’ little dingaling was still there, so I guess it’s a pass. Didn’t accuse the moderator of bleeding out her eyes, didn’t shit in its’ hand and throw it at “Ol’ Joe”. Still trolling the rubes, but … that’s twixt us, aeh?

    Sadly, Plague, I have a high degree of confidence you are right.

    Yes, it. It isn’t human. It is less than human, an animal.

  19. someofparts

    Well Trump is more likely to kill my Social Security, so Biden is safer for me personally on that point. But Biden has already said that he will invade Venezuela, so that means some old lady in that country will be living on the street if he wins. Feels like I have to choose between a leader who will make me homeless at 80 or a leader who will do that to some old woman like me in Venezuela. If the price I must pay to protect my crumbs of domestic beneficence is to return to the destruction of nations and immiseration of innocent millions abroad … even against my own interests I have to pick the guy who doesn’t launch endless wars on the rest of the world. I would rather the world laugh at us than be mass-slaughtered by us.

    Maybe the best among bad outcomes would be for Democrats to keep the House, take back the Senate and dominate Congress while Trump goes back to the White House. I really like it that Trump doesn’t go around the world starting wars. Somebody said that he just wants to do business with people not fight them and I figure hells bells, even corrupt business dealings are better than effing war, amirite?

  20. someofparts

    Jimmy Carter was the last President who did not use the office and its status to enrich himself.

  21. someofparts

    Also, Trump and his kids are draining funds out of RNC coffers and stashing the loot in off-shore accounts and … I’m supposed to have a sad? Because really, the longer I think about it, the funnier it gets. The meal starts with a shit sandwich and ends with just deserts.

  22. Hugh

    Trump doesn’t start wars. Yet he has still managed to kill 226,000 Americans, something we have not seen since WWII. There were also ISIS in Syria, the assassination of the Iranian general in Iraq, the endless slaughter in Yemen which he sponsors by backing that stand up guy who chops into bits people he doesn’t like. But details, details, since they don’t support the point.

    And, Thomas, have at the Democrats as much as want but you might mention that Trump is the Republican President, and Republicans had something to do with it, and, sure nobody cares about democracy, but even a candidate as bad as Hillary got 3 million more votes than he did. We should talk about the electoral college, an 18th century device meant to make sure that the proles, ordinary Americans, never called the shots.

  23. Thomas B Golladay


    Then vote 3rd Party. Convince as many other people you can to vote 3rd Party. Stop playing lesser evil games.

    Otherwise I can’t help you. I got one vote, I’m giving it to the Green Party’s Howie Hawkins.

  24. Plague Species

    Trump and his crime family raiding the campaign coffers is not a matter of sad or happy unless you’re the Trump crime family and the targets of the con. It’s irony. Yet more irony. So much irony, it’s beyond a bumper crop. It’s a plague of irony.

    But sad or happy or ironic is not the point, or at least not the main point. The point is, there can be no progress without justice. Without reconciling the past. You can’t move forward until the past, immediate past at least, is reconciled and justice is rendered.

    Yes, ALL politicians enrich themselves to one degree or another. Some in real time and others, especially presidents, after the fact or after they have served their terms as Puppet In Chief. Deferred emoluments, if you will. In Trump’s case, he prefers his emoluments in real time rather than deferred. So, it’s a matter of degree worse than deferred emoluments because it’s audacious and in-your-face. Deferring emoluments is meant to shelter and hide the graft from the unwitting. Real time emoluments says, “I’m a grifter and I’m grifting right in front of your face and in your face because you mean no more to me than an ant means to me.”

    As far as Social Security is concerned, you’re as likely to lose it under a Biden administration as you are a Trump administration. Wall Street wants the retirement funds and both candidates represent Wall Street. Plus, Biden has promised more than once he will end Social Security and gut entitlements like the good conservative Republican he is.

    Finally, Ian has said this many times and I wholeheartedly agree. Trump is not the one. He is a primer. The next to come along after the repeat of the Obama administration which is what the Biden administration will be, will make Trump look like a choir boy in comparison. The Obama administration, the reaction to it that it engendered and did nothing to disable, gave us Trump. The Biden administration will give us a hundred times worse than Trump. When that time comes, be it four years or eight, Social Security, if you’re still alive, will be the least of your concerns.

  25. Hugh

    Deferred emoluments are just legal bribery since the payoff is future and unstated. Play the game and you will be taken care of, wink, wink.

    A ham sandwich could beat Trump, and Biden has been very good at sticking to his ham sandwich role. Biden likely will be a bad President, but I don’t think he will kill hundreds of thousands of us the way Trump has.

  26. BlizzardOfOzzz

    Trump made a fair point at the debate: according to the experts, the projection was 2+ million dead in the US. So the way Trump has handled the corona virus has saved over a million lives.

  27. Ché Pasa

    Oh he might. He just won’t stand around watching and laughing about it the way Trump and his minions do. Empathy don’tchaknow.

  28. Trumps performance was very unimpressive. I’d like to know how many minutes he prepared for the debate. (See what I did there? Minutes, not hours.)

    Moderator did pretty good.

    Biden a smoother, and less obvious liar than Trump.

  29. Hugh

    The 2 million was a guesstimate and referred to zero response, but the states, CDC, Congress etc. were always going to do something. It’s Trump who tried to sabotage the country’s response. But I’m sure you would be trying just as hard to give Obama a pass if the coronavirus happened under his Administration.

  30. Willy

    If we Americans were doing better with the covid than Bangladesh, then I’d be happy.

    I’m trying to set the bar lower these days so I’ll be less disappointed, but apparently just can’t set the dang thing low enough. Will rationalizing wildly work better for my poor tired brain instead?

  31. NR

    “Trump’s handling of COVID saved over a million lives” is a big brain take for sure.

  32. BlizzardOfOzzz

    By your own logic, if 2+ million is the baseline, then 230K is an order of magnitude less. You guys act as if zero deaths were the baseline, and every death above that is on Drumph’s head personally. USA deaths per capita are right in line with every Western European country.

    Evidently Australia/New Zealand have managed to achieve basically zero deaths, but being a remote Pacific Island makes it feasible to just shut the border. Vietnam apparently achieved similar by putting hundreds of thousands of people into government camps. Those places now have to be on high alert for the foreseeable future — borders restricted, all migrants quarantined, extreme lockdown measures any time a single case appears. Does that seem sane to you, especially with Sweden as a counter-example? To me Sweden seems like the best outcome: yes they had higher deaths than their neighbors, but overall not a noticeable spike in excess deaths, and now they have immunity, with no oppressive government measures.

    I do think Trump made a mistake listening to preening clowns like Fauci. It seems you have to either take extreme measures (not viable in the USA imo-you really think your chocolate messiah would/could have pulled it off?), or just let ‘er rip like Sweden. But we ended up (like every Western European country) with basically the worst of both worlds: uncontrolled spread of the virus AND insane open-ended totalitarian measures from the government/corps.

  33. Willy

    Deaths per million (as of 10/23/2020)

    Spain 739
    USA 679
    Sweden 582
    Canada 267
    Portugal 218
    Germany 120
    Finland 64
    Norway 52
    South Korea 9

  34. Thomas B Golladay

    Its over. Trump might very well pull off a popular vote win. And given the situation in California, he may even eke out a narrow too close to call recount there that goes to the Supreme Court if the State doesn’t do more to protect its mail-in ballots.

  35. Willy

    I may be a bit slow, but is this parody?

    I remember my days of veal pen humor. Is this troll pen parody? It’d suck to be so underemployed that’d be the only career option, but this made my day. This Turley guy is a hoot. Keep it coming.

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