Live-blogging Midmorning: Policy, the presidential debate, and the bailout

You’ve had a few days to think about it, and this morning I’ll be live-blogging Kerri Miller’s first hour of Midmorning, as she looks back at Friday night’s debate. Guests are: Karlyn Kohrs Campbell, professor of communication studies at the University of Minnesota; William Doyle, author of “Inside the Oval Office: the White House Tapes from FDR to Clinton” ; and Christopher Whalen: senior vice president and managing director of Institutional Risk Analytics, which focuses on the banking industry.

That’s right! We’re going to talk about issues, which is why we want your comments. Just submit them below and I’ll cull through the best ones to read on the air. We’ll be having a conversation here while listening to Kerri’s conversation.

On Sunday, by the way, both candidates were on Sunday morning talk shows, both gave some support to the $700 bailout. Which reminds me: The best question Friday night was the one both wouldn’t touch : What won’t you be able to do in your administration because of the money necessary to fund the bailout?


9:01 a.m. – We will be talking about the bailout for the first 10 minutes.

9:08 a.m. – Chris Whalen, financial whiz, is on the phone. Says the bailout is “largely irrelevant and ineffective.” We’ve had four banks in Europe nationalized or injected with capital, Wachovia takeover and with each there’s increasing government involvement. “The problem with the bailout is it’s fighting the problem of six months ago,” he said.

9:11 a.m. – Do the holders of the rights to It’s a Wonderful Life get any money whenever a financial analyst invokes a scene from it to explain the financial woes on Wall Street? I’ll hang up and listen.

9:12 a.m. Here’s his Web site.

9:15 a.m. – The next red flag in the “crisis”? “We’ll see more resolutions,” he says. Then he says “people listening to this program should not be concerned. If I only had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that in the last six months…. This is the only crisis in the country I can remember that has reached fever pitch ith pols and analysts telling us not to be concerned.

Let’s turn to the debate!

9:18 a.m. – E.J. Dionne, in the Washington Post, said McCain lost.

9:20 a.m. – While we’re talking about the history of Mississippi, let’s think a bit about this week’s vice presidential debate. Let’s see, how can we best do that?

9:23 a.m. – Houston Chronicle: Neither candidate landed a knockout punch.

9:23 a.m. – Doyle, Campbell, and Kerri are talking about historical mentions of civil rights in debates. Didn’t come up Friday night, of course. Campbell says neither side wants to touch the subject.

9:25 a.m. — Caller Karen from Minneapolis: “Mostly discouraged. Neither candidate has the strengths I’m looking for. I’ve always voted Republican.”

Bobometrics She’s right here in terms of content of the debate. Both, as pols tend to do, looked for ways to go to their stump speeches. One was the question about what candidates won’t be able to do because of the bailout. The other moment was the discussion about Russia, when Obama connected it to oil and then went to the stump speech on energy.

9:27 a.m. – McCain didn’t mess up, but he was “like the demolition derby. He got to where he was going but in such a bizarre kind of way. He says he forgot phrases within his own stump speeches.

9:29 a.m. – Campbell says McCain was trying to project himself as a maverick. The problem is “what he’s proposing is so traditional.”

Commenter says:

In-laws said that McCain was much stronger in debate on foreign policy.

Bobometrics: McCain’s strongest part of the night was his analysis of the Russia-Georgia problem.

9:32 a.m. – Caller listened to the radio instead of TV. Says Obama was a better speaker. McCain knew more.

9:36 a.m. – Sudden realization: neither guest nor host is aware of political debate drinking game concepts. Out of touch with America?

9:40 a.m. – Why didn’t McCain look at Obama. “Because he grew up in a culture where if a black man looked into the eyes of a white man, it was a threat,” analyst “David” contends. OK, that’s a leap. It’s a guess. Presented as fact based on the fact McCain went to Annapolis and “is of that generation.”

“I thought this was a way to reflect that Obama isn’t qualified so he doesn’t have to be treated as an equal,” says Campbell.

9:45 a.m. – The Kissinger flap. Who’s right? The Christian Science Monitor takes a whack at it.

9:50 a.m. – Back to the racist allegations of not looking at each other. I found this:


9:52 a.m. – Back to what would Kissinger do, this quote from the Christian Science Monitor article:

Henry Kissinger believes Barack Obama misstated his views on diplomacy with US adversaries and is not happy about being mischaracterized,” the email reads. “He says, ‘Senator McCain is right. I would not recommend the next president of the United States engage in talks with Iran at the Presidential level. My views on this issue are entirely compatible with the views of my friend Senator John McCain.”

9:57 a.m. “White lady” calls to say “it gave us the creeps everytime McCain said, “he doesn’t understand.”

“It so spoke to the ‘he’s pretty smart for a Negro,'” she said.

Says Doyle, “A truth is laid on the table that blows up in your face. It’s this revulsion that white people have that there could be an atom of racism in a soul. I bet younger people see it (Bob notes: Why younger people? See my post last week that younger people do NOT have a substantially different view of race than older people),…”

==>> Well, now, the show is over, but we sure have an issue to talk about now, don’t we? So talk. See you in comments. mccain_looking2.jpg