Wednesday, October 06, 2004

---The Vice Presidential Debate last evening was almost what was promised...almost. You had the pit bull, Cheney, against the polished trial lawyer, Edwards, in what was supposed to be the debate filled with fireworks. It wasn't bad, it just could have been better. Both men actually did well in hitting on the points they wanted to stress. I guess my problem was with the format, and with the fact that the candidates could not address each other (although Edwards actually did so several times). This was Cheney's stong format, a sit-down "Meet The Press" setup instead of standing at the podiums as Bush and Kerry did last week, which obviously made the incumbant VP much more comfortable. Cheney, the pit bull, didn't hesistate getting rather personal when he had the opportunity.

It was actually good to see Edwards, who had been playing Mr. Nice Guy for much of the campaign, taking the gloves off later in the debate by pointing out several of Cheney's votes as a Congressman from Wyoming against the Head Start preschool programme, the Department of Education, Meals on Wheels programs, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. national holiday, among others. It's about time.

Actually, when looking at everything balanced, in grading the debate last night, I would have to grade it a draw. Both men drew blood; both slipped up a couple of times, but neither made a real knockout punch or even one to really shake up the other. Too bad this is the only debate between these two.

--- It was not the only forum being held last evening. The Polk County League of Women Voters held a forum in Bartow featuring the candidates for the four County Commission seats up for election this time. This one issue that seemed to keep coming up is impact fees for new construction in lieu of raising ad valorum taxes. Everyone knows that Polk has the lowest impact fees in the region, and there has been efforts by some to bring those in line with other counties...but the BOCC has their lips stuck on the backsides of the builders and developers associations to do anything.

--- And it was truly sad to hear the news last evening of Rodney Dangerfield's passing. He is one of the last truly great comedians who can tell a joke in such a way that it can be risque but you don't have to use the coarse language. Although he truly became famous after "Caddyshack", Dangerfield has been around for many years, plying his trade originally in the resorts of the Catskills where comedians such as Danny Kaye, Jerry Lewis, and Red Buttons learned it. Rodney was a really funny fellow, and he'll be truly missed.


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