Ok, so I've peeked at a few of the "debates" on TV, especially the YouTube/CNN deal. A few observations before I grade the candidates.
1. Why did Hillary get to stand on a 4" platform, and the vertically-challenged Cucinich not? Inquiring minds wanna' know.
2. Although I applaud the "newness" of the video questions, some of them were out in place, in my humble view. But then again, can you really call these debates? this is just free advertising time ...
3. If these candidates have no discipline to shut the flap quickly when Anderson Cooper says "time", it makes me wander how their discipline is when I am not looking. But that may depend on what my definition of "is" is ...
4. I agree with Hillary and John. There is way too many candidates up there. Although the guy from Alaska (Gravel) has kept me going with his complaining of not getting enough time.
5. Have ANY of these candidates ever run a business, generated any income, voted for a budget cut of ANY kind, balanced their own checkbooks? ... I wish the snowman could have asked them that...
Hillary Clinton: I have to admit, she has impressed me with her command on the lectern, her fixing her delivery so her voice is less shrill, and just the quick way she thinks on her feet. I have not ruled out that she may be a good thing for America (as I duck the tomatoes coming my way), I will explain later. Yes she is a DLC-fed opportunist, but I think she has this nomination sewn-up. Score=8
Chris Dodd: Probably the dark horse here. I never expected him to do so well. His politics are too far left of center for me, but unlike other left wingers, he speaks with a "centrism" that demands I listen. Like Hillary, he can edit himself fast, and has the tenure to claim experience. I think he is angling for a Cabinet position, ... I don't think he will make it past November, but if he can get to the final 4, ... Score=7
Dennis Cucinich: I'm not kidding. Stop looking at him and "listen" to what he is saying. Sure he is a wide left socialist, and maybe he does want to slice the largess of the military (well hell, so do I for that matter), but some of his ideas and convictions are lead pipe solid. He has not swayed his convictions according to the polls, and you got to love a guy who lays the lumber the the rest of them without any care. I think he can last until super Tuesday. As close to a Libertarian as the Democrats have on their roster. Score=7
Joe Biden: I admit I always liked this guy. Sure the guy can't find the edit button for his mouth if his life depended on it, but neither can I, so there. Even when he was going postal on the Thomas Supreme Court nomination back in the day, he struck me as smart, educated and well meaning. I think he has a pragmatic view of the military and the US role in world democracy and if he were the President (and stopped talking long enough to work) I would not have too may sleepless nights. I still can't forgive him for the Neil Kinnock plagiarism bit that torpedoed his first campaign, but I am willing to concede that he has learned his lesson. Score=6.5
John Edwards: I just can't root for him. I think his populism message and "poverty" tours are the last life raft that he can hang on to because he has lost the black vote to Hillary and Barack, and nobody in the South gives a shit about him. He is articulate, smart and all, but when he unleashed his wife to take torpedo shots at Hillary and Coulter, instead of having the stones to do it himself,, .... that spoke volumes. In my opinion, he is a fake, an opportunist of worse level than Hillary,....... but, I guarantee you he is the next US Attorney General under Hillary. Score=6
Barack Obama: I'm still not sure what to make of him. He speaks well, great presence, and an undeniable "fresh" face to the group. But did you read his book? It sounded like it was written by a 22-year old. The broadside that Hillary landed in his ass for being naive was felt. Sure Lincoln was less experienced than Obama when he ran for president as a 3-rd party candidate,... but there is not comparison. Obama comes across prepared, but not extraordinary so. New, but his flavor-of-the month moment is fading in spite of all the money he is still getting. Stay in the Senate Barack.... oh maybe another 12 years. Then go for it. Your green ears are showing. Score=6
Bill Richardson: A very boring man, and a worse candidate. This guy has the aura of a firefly against the black night sky... not very noticeable. He may have the best resume on the planet right now, but so did Bush 41 back in 88 and he still bored me to death. His delivery is fractured, he is not a dynamic speaker or figure, and I still can't find one think he did as Energy Secretary or Governor that makes me do a double-take. As to his Latin credentials?... please. With "Richardson" as his last name and his feeble attempts at Spanish,.. I doubt many even know it. Score=4
Next up: My opinion of the GOP side (and you think this is bad...)