One of my dear readers (hi, Cyndi!) actually took the time to email me because she just KNEW I had a Vice Presidential Debate wrap-up in me and she noticed that I had not written it.
I went over to Santa Clarita to watch the debates at Queen of Spain's house with about 20 other people, many of them bloggers. Yes, I drove an hour to spend watch 90 minutes of debates, which seems nutty but these are mah peeple!
People who aren't addicted don't understand the pleasure that comes from hanging out with people who don't make a fuss when you twitter or post or put up a photo or an Utterz or whatever it is you simply must do right that moment in cyberspace.
So. Onto the debate, about which I have only ONE comment: While the rest of the world was sighing over Joe Biden's choking up about his family's tragic accident, I was busy having the debate completely reframed in my mind.
That one moment snapped everything back into reality for me.
Because, you see, a few days ago, I had heard Joe Biden on the radio talking with a reporter about how he had done the EXACT same thing at a campaign rally. He told the reporter how embarrassed he was and how he wouldn't go there again.
But he did, he did go there again AFTER he said he wouldn't. He went there because he knew the moment worked, that it connected with people. Seeing that reminded me of one thing: all these people are doing is trying to get elected, and they are using all the tools in their political toolboxes to do it.
There is no reality there. Or if there is, it is about as "real" as the fourth season of "Bret Michaels: Rock of Love."
It reminds me of when I was a reporter. I did what I had to to get the story. I used all my super Spidey senses to try and determine what would get people to spill the good stuff. If they needed concern, I gave them deep, furrowed-brow concern. If they wanted to show me their prized orchid collection before they showed me the documents I really wanted, by God, I exclaimed over their paphiopedalums like I had never seen a flower before.
I was not actually concerned. I was professionally concerned for as long as it took me to get the story. Yeah, people's stories touched my heart sometimes, but I couldn't let them touch me too much because those weren't my stories to live. They were just my stories to tell and move on. I knew I was using people - and often they were using me to get the word out about something that was important to them.
Sometimes it was a little sickening, but I did it in the service of a good story. I was doing my job. And that's all Sarah and Joe are doing.
All is fair in love and politics. If your wife and child are dead, drag it out and wave it around. If you have a Down Syndrome baby, bring him out in a building full of lights and screaming people.
I do think that Biden and Obama, by not stooping to truly sleazy tactics like McCain's ad lying about Obama wanting sex education for kindergarteners are behaving better than the McPalin team. But neither side is impeccable - see www.factcheck.org for an impartial analysis.
These are politicians, people, doing their job, and their job is to get elected. That is the one thing, the only thing, we can be sure of. Sorry to be so cynical.
I'll let my man Chuck D say it: