Thursday, October 29, 2015

The Republican debate...

...last night was a complete waste of time. (And that's coming from a political junkie!)

I don't fault the candidates or even CNBC; the whole format is tired and useless. How do you answer a question about economics (or anything else) in sixty seconds? Rather than an actual debate, which would require far more time and far fewer candidates, last night's spectacle was more like a beauty pageant: who looked good, who got in the most zingers, who looked presidential, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

The truth is, all the Republican candidates want to lower taxes on the rich, cut entitlements, reduce regulations and blah, blah, blah. (Basically, they want to make the world a better place for rich people.) 

In any event, I doubt very much that last night's "debate" changed anyone's mind or the polls in any meaningful way. Ben Carson is leading in Iowa and Donald Trump is leading over all, but neither will be the GOP nominee next November. Bush is fading, Rubio is coming up fast along the rail and Ted Cruz is lurking in the background. Maybe -- just maybe -- John Kasich or Chris Christie will do well in New Hampshire and make a run as the establishment choice. But everyone else -- Carly Fiorina, Mike Huckabee, Rand Paul, Lindsey Graham, Bobby Jindal, Rick Santorum, George Pataki and Jim Gilmore -- ought to just pack it in and go home. As I said, there are just too many candidates and it's too hard to focus on the ones who actually have a chance.

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