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Live-Blogging the Debate

October 16, 2012

I am not actually watching the debate. These things are like fingernails on a chalkboard to me (except I never found that sound all that disturbing, and have hardly ever been at risk of hearing it). And they are without value as entertainment or edification. So why bother?

The paint on my bedroom walls is indescribably horrible. It is a kind of green, though at times it seems a kind of blue. In truth it is kin to neither of these noble colors. It does not evoke the ocean or the sky or the forestlands. Only some purely human mental anguish. I should have painted over it years ago. But now it is too late. There is no more hope.

If you know who you are voting for there is no reason to watch the debates. If you do not know who you are voting for there is no reason to watch the debates. If you are not voting then maybe you have a reason to watch, as a curious anthropologist.

Can’t find my tennis ball. Tossing the tennis ball, and doing my trademark finger-rolls, would have been a good way to pass this debate-time.

A problem with the concept of genocide is that it does not seem that victims of a massacre would find any consolation in knowing that their massacre was not genocide. If non-genocide is not mitigating then can genocide be aggravating? And what do the candidates think of this?

The entry above owes its existence to the fact that I am reading a review of Bloodlands in the Los Angeles Review of Books. The LARB has been a disappointment to me, it’s writers do not impress me often, but I still read from it regularly. It is nice that they are publishing a review of a book that came out two years ago. If the book is still relevant a review is still relevant. They also published an extended interview with Greil Marcus that is worthwhile.

I would like to give a shout-out to my readers in Thailand. There are many thing to admire about the Thais, but I would particularly like to draw attention to their beautiful alphabet (not a true alphabet but an abugida, a term I was not familiar with until I just read it on Wikipedia.)

I just took a look at more conventional live-blogger, Andrew Sullivan. As an Obama supporter he famously freaked out over the previous debate. I am glad to see he seems happier this time around. Quote: “Obama is now dismantling Romney. It is a joy to watch these lies exposed. Game back fucking on!” Also: “Obama has owned the first half hour.”

My refusal to watch the debate should not be taken as a sign of lack of interest in the election, any more than a refusal to perform a rectal exam on the candidates would indicate such a lack of interest.

A problem with this kind of live-blogging is that it is egregiously self-centered, lacking anything other than the self, such as the actual debate, to focus on. On the other hand I am avoiding projecting my self-concerns onto the debate. As a public event it remains unsullied by the excrescence of my opinions.

I watched Nobuhiko Obayashi’s 1977 film House (Hausu) for the first time last night. Wonderful. Justly famous for being incredibly bizarre, it is far more accessible than most movies with that reputation, and so I feel confidant in broadly recommending to people in general.

Mormonism: it’s fascinating! Kudos to Mitt Romney for bringing his strange religion to public attention.

Mitt Romney, on the other hand: not so fascinating. Mormons tend to be less interesting than Mormonism.

Is the debate over yet?

The actual debate is of no importance. The important thing is what happens afterwards, when the chattering classes commence their chattering, gather in their conclaves, and hand down their verdict. The actual debate will be discarded from memory, save for a few choice details that have lifted and distorted and manipulated to fit into The Narrative that the chatterers have come up with.

I was surprised to learn, in coverage before the VP debate, that polls showed that Joe Biden was not well liked by the American public. How could anyone not like Joe Biden!

So it looks like the debate is over. I am cheered to see that Obama supporters seem to be pretty happy with it. Thanks for joining me in my Special Coverage of the 2012 presidential debates.

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