Third GOP Had a Few Winners; Liberal Media Big Loser

The third GOP Presidential Debate, held last night on CNBC, had few big moments for the candidates but several long minutes of public defeat for liberal media.  The candidates were repeatedly asked questions that could be described as “unskillful” if one were trying to be overly polite to the moderators.  But several of the candidates stepped up to the challenge, calling out the moderators and delivering lines that should help them in the polls.

Donald Trump showed that he has evolved as a candidate.  He was much more disciplined than in the past but was still able to give better than he got from both his fellow debaters and from the moderators.  He won because he did no damage and may have helped his campaign by showing he’s got more substance than many have accused him of having.  No damage and some benefits makes him the debate winner because he’s already leading or basically tied with Ben Carson in most polls.

Ben Carson did well but didn’t seem to have much fire.  His answers were careful and humble on a night when many others were making risky comments and even some attacks to increase their profiles.  I don’t know that he hurt his campaign but I can’t really see where he helped it either.

Marco Rubio had a great night and may have positioned himself as leader of the mainstream candidates.  He was attacked by Jeb Bush and beat back the attack handily.  He was attacked on his finances by the moderators and slapped them hard while turning it to his advantage by speaking to the voters about how he was not born rich and how he feels voters financial struggles because he shares them.  A solid performance with several great moments that will undoubtedly be rebroadcast in the coming days.  This should help him with donors and make it so his campaign has no problem financing for the long haul.

Ted Cruz also had several great moments during the debate.  Some were substantive but his best lines were his attacks on the liberal media, including the debate moderators.  This debate will keep Cruz in the campaign for the long haul as well.

Carly Fiorina had a few good moments but was unfortunately not given enough time to really shine.  The moderators seemed to have made a point of not asking her or Donald Trump many questions so as to give the other candidates more time.  That is unfortunate as she is one of the best candidates on the stage.  Low contributions may make her leave the campaign at some point but she’s a solid candidate for the VP slot if she does end up dropping out of running for the top ticket.  If she does get some bump in the polls from this debate and can increase her campaign coffers, then she too will be in for the long haul.  But I don’t think she had enough time in the spotlight last night to do either.

The remaining candidates, Kasich, Huckabee and the lower tier candidates (Graham, Jindhal, etc) are on borrowed time.  They don’t have the money they need to last more than a few more months.

The big story for the night other than the candidates performance was the embarrassing performance of the moderators.  Their bias was clear from the get go and they didn’t even make an attempt to hid it.  Their questions were unworthy of the event for the most part, shallow attempts at either demeaning a candidate or pitting one against another.  In the end, they only made themselves look bad and further diminished whatever remaining credibility they may have had among conservative viewers.

Ed Ruth

 

 

Maureen O’Hara, One of the Last Movie Icons

America lost an icon yesterday with the passing of legendary actress Maureen O’Hara.  Many will remember her as the mom in the 1960s Disney Classic “The Parent Trap” or her role in “Miracle on 34th Street” but I loved her roles in many Westerns and Adventure movies.  A star among stars, she always held a special place in my heart.

Like many boys who grew up when I did, I watched all of the big western classics, particularly the John Wayne movies.  John Wayne had many costars but none could match Maureen O’Hara.  With her blazing red hair and fiery spirit, she was never second string in a scene.  Even when sharing a scene with an overwhelming personality like John Wayne, her beauty and personality would make her shine.

She often played the role of a noble lady and it was a role to which she was perfectly suited.  She spoke with precision, occasionally allowing a light Irish trill to come out if the role called for it.  Born into an upper-middle-class family in Dublin Ireland in 1920, she was raised by her opera singing mother to be a lady and her soccer team owning father to be a lover of sports and outdoor activities.  John Wayne once said of her ” She’s a great guy”.  The two never had a relationship but they were very close throughout their entire lives.   John Wayne passed away in 1979.

One of my favorite movies of hers was with John Wayne in “The Quiet Man”.  It was a story about an Irish boxer who left America to go back to the island he left as a baby to try to find some peace in his ancestral homeland. Instead, he meets a red haired beauty in the neighboring farm and finds love. Maureen O’Hara is incredible in the movie, as she plays woman torn between her love and the proprieties of her times.  It’s a beautiful movie.

Another of my favorite rolls of hers was in the western comedy McClintock in which she played John Wayne’s estranged wife. It’s an unusual Western in that it truly is a comedy.  There’s an awesome fight scene that must involve at least 50 people in a mud pit including various cowboys, Indians and a lot of women, making probably one of the most unusual fight scenes in any Western movie.

She starred in many movies with many famous actors and actresses, including Tyrone Powers, Errol Flynn, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Jimmy Stewart, Henry Fonda, Walter Pidgeon, Natalie Wood and many others.   She was a class act and one of the last from a Golden Age of Movies that required true acting talent.  The world just lost a beautiful person that lived an amazing life.

Ed Ruth

Dem Debate: A Hillary Win Because No One Threw Punches

During the very boring liberal lovefest of the first Democratic presidential debate there was very little that could be called surprising or shocking.  With CNN deciding to format the debate in a way in which there would be no direct conflicts between candidates there was little opportunity for fireworks. So it was without surprise that Hillary dominated the debate and had the liberal audience screaming with joy at every sigh and smirk.
It was not surprising that former Governor O’Malley of Maryland and former Virginia Senator Webb (Flip Flopping Lincoln Chafee isn’t even worth mentioning) did nothing to bring their campaigns out of mediocrity.  The only thing they really could have done would be to publicly call out Hillary Clinton on her dishonesty and only  Chafee, who has no traction at all, made even a slight attempt at that during the debate.   O’Malley and Webb seemed to understand that if they even attempted to draw any blood from Clinton’s weaknesses that the liberal crowd would boo them into submission.  Neither seems to really want the job of president. So they’ve  achieved their goal of becoming a minor footnote in history.
So with no opportunities for anything surprising coming from the other candidates, it was up to Bernie Sanders to bring any life into this debate.   But he came at Hillary with padded gloves during every opportunity for conflict during the debate. And his biggest cheers came when he said the only shock of the night…he said that everyone is tired of hearing about the ‘damn emails’ and wants to hear about “the real issues.”
This is a standard line for any politician who is trying to get the media to stop talking about a scandal. It is highly unusual for the lead competitor of such a candidate to make such a statement.  Regardless of who is making the statement, it is disgraceful. Is Bernie Sanders really saying that we should ignore a lack of integrity and willful breaking of the law?  Is he really saying that we should ignore the intentional breach of national security because he thinks people are tired of hearing about it?
Hillary Clinton did not return the favor, coming at Sanders strongly on what she called a weakness of his when it comes to gun control.  She attacked him on socialism saying she believed in the power of small business, a cornerstone of capitalism.
Not that she had much competition in the first place, but all of the other candidates might as well throw in the towel after this debate.  They’ve shown they will not seriously go after Hillary Clinton, an already very damaged candidate.  If they are not going to even try to engage her on lying,  her “I play by different rules” attitude and her use of her position as Secretary of State to make the Clinton Foundation gobs of money in direct violation of the law.  If they aren’t going to bring up her failure and her cover up in the Benghazi disaster.  If they aren’t going to say that America deserves a better leader than one most associated with the word “Liar”, then they do not deserve a chance to be President either.  America can do better than the whole lot of them.
Ed Ruth