The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler


Posted on | September 12, 2011 | 35 Comments

Greetings from the Florida State Fairgrounds where we’re about to get under way with the CNN/Tea Party Express debate.

UPDATE 9:52 p.m. ET: Herman Cain: “I’d bring a sense of humor to the White House, because America is too uptight.” And that’s it! LET THE SPIN BEGIN!

UPDATE 9:50 p.m. ET: Ron Paul just name-checked Austrian economics!

UPDATE 9:45 p.m. ET: Rick Perry: “I agree with Governor Huntsman.” Commercial.

UPDATE 9:44 p.m. ET: Woman from Afghanistan asks a question. Gets an answer from . . . Governor Asterisk, who advocates a cut-and-run.

UPDATE 9:42 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum slams Ron Paul: “You said that it was our actions” that caused 9/11. “That’s irresponsible.” Accuses Paul of “parroting Osama bin Laden.” Paul gets booed when he responds.

UPDATE 9:40 p.m. ET: Ron Paul wants to reduce “occupying” foreign countries.

Da Tech Guy is also blogging the debate.

UPDATE 9:39 p.m. ET: Newt talks national security.

UPDATE 9:38 p.m. ET: Herman Cain talks energy independence. Wants a “regulatory reduction commission.”

UPDATE 9:37 p.m. ET: Governor Asterisk. Again.

UPDATE 9:36 p.m. ET: Perry. Perry Perry Perry. Perry. I’ll be interested to see exactly how much time the Smilin’ Texan got tonight.

UPDATE 9:35 p.m. ET: Romney gets to Perry’s right on immigration, endorsing the border fence.

UPDATE 9:34 p.m. ET: Governor Asterisk accuses Perry of treason? Whoa!

UPDATE 9:33 p.m. ET: Perry. Perry Perry Perry. Perry Perry Perry.

UPDATE 9:32 p.m. ET: Bachmann gets cheers for criticizing Perry. “That’s the American way.”

UPDATE 9:31 p.m. ET: Perry defends in-state tuition for illegals. “That is the American way.” Some boos in the audience.

UPDATE 9:30 p.m. ET: Santorum slams Perry for giving in-state college tuition to illegals.

UPDATE 9:29 p.m. ET: Perry: “The idea that you’re going to build a wall from Brownsville to El Paso” is impractical.

UPDATE 9:27 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum talks immigration. Slams Perry. “Secure the border.” He’s pro-immigration.

UPDATE 9:21 p.m. ET: Michele Bachmann: “It’s unconstitutional!” (Talking about the individual mandate in ObamaCare or RomneyCare. Take your pick.) “I’m committed to repealing ObamaCare.” Commercial break.

UPDATE 9:18 p.m. ET: Ron Paul defends freedom. Gets applause.

UPDATE 9:16 p.m. ET: Rick Perry slams RomneyCare as the model for ObamaCare.

UPDATE 9:15 p.m. ET: Romney is asked about RomneyCare. He “absolutely” defends it.

UPDATE 9:13 p.m. ET: Herman Cain on how to fix health care: “First, repeal ObamaCare in its entirety.”

UPDATE 9:12 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum slams Perry on Gardisil. “No government purpose served” by the mandate: “Big government run amok.”

UPDATE 9:10 p.m. ET: Bachmann brings up the “big drug company” that profited from Perry’s Gardisil decision.

UPDATE 9:09 p.m. ET: Bachmann calls Perry’s Gardisil decision “flat-out wrong.” Turns it into a slam on ObamaCare.

UPDATE 9:07 p.m. ET: Rick Perry admits he made a mistake on Gardisil.

UPDATE 9:06 p.m. ET: Ron Paul talks about executive orders. Says, “The executive order should never be used to legislate.”

UPDATE 9:05 p.m. ET: Mitt criticizes the Fair Tax.

UPDATE 9:04 p.m. ET: Newt: “We have a problem of overspending. We don’t have a problem of undertaxing.” Name-checks “the Obama depression.”

UPDATE 9:02 p.m. ET: Newt gets in a shot at General Election — cheers! “Doesn’t [Obama] realize that every green tax credit is a loophole?”

UPDATE 9:01 p.m. ET: Governor Asterisk. He’s getting too much time. Any Huntsman is too much Huntsman.

UPDATE 9:00 p.m. ET: Mitt Romney is pro-Fed.

UPDATE 8:59 p.m. ET: Michele Bachmann refuses to criticize Perry on the Fed. Perry calls the Fed’s inflationary policy a “travesty.”

UPDATE 8:56 p.m. ET: Herman Cain wants to audit the Fed and fix the Fed. During the commercial break, I was in the smoking area with two Cain staffers who were pleased that the time is being “spread around” much better than during the NBC debate, when Cain got the least time of any candidate.

UPDATE 8:52 p.m. ET: Commercial break!

UPDATE 8:51 p.m. ET: Governor Asterisk.

UPDATE 8:50 p.m. ET: Herman Cain: “I was a worker before I was an executive and before a business owner. . . . Yes, I know how to be pro-worker. . . . I understand work, because that’s how I came up.”

UPDATE 8:48 p.m. ET: Newt Gingrich: “The American people create jobs, not government.” Invokes Ronald Reagan.

UPDATE 8:46 p.m. ET: Ron Paul is a Texan. Not a Rick Perry fan.

UPDATE 8:45 p.m. ET: Rick Perry: “Mitt, you were doing pretty good until you got to talkin’ poker.”

UPDATE 8:43 p.m. ET: Mitt Romney praises Texas. Not necessarily praising their governor, of course.

UPDATE 8:42 p.m. ET: Herman Cain: “We need a bold solution.” He talks up his “9-9-9” plan.

UPDATE 8:41 p.m. ET: Michele Bachmann says “it’s easy to turn around this economy.”

UPDATE 8:38 p.m. ET: Rick Perry: “He’s gonna pay for ’em all with raisin’ your taxes!” (Talking about Obama’s jobs plan.)

UPDATE 8:36 p.m. ET: Question from Portsmouth, Virginia: “What would you do to get the economy going forward?” Governor Asterisk gets the first shot.

UPDATE 8:33 p.m. ET: Michele Bachmann talks personal rresponsibility. And now . . . commercial!

UPDATE 8:32 p.m. ET: Ron Paul wants to cut money for foreign wars. Proposes elimination of Dept. of Educatioon and Dept. of Energy.

UPDATE 8:31 p.m. ET: Mitt Romney talks balanced budgets.

UPDATE 8:30 p.m. ET: Rick Perry will not repeal Medicare prescription drugs benefits.

UPDATE 8:29 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum talks Medicare. Also, they just showed Ali Akbar in a crowd reaction shot.

UPDATE 8:27 p.m. ET: Newt denounces the “Washington mythology” about balanced budgets. Gets all wonky about it.

UPDATE 8:25 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum talks about his 1994 campaign. “The people of Pennsylvania wanted someone who had the courage to tell them the truth.”

UPDATE 8:23 p.m. ET: Newt Gingrich gets cheers for slamming Obama.

UPDATE 8:21 p.m. ET: Governor Asterisk.

UPDATE 8:20 p.m. ET: Ron Paul’s turn and then Herman Cain. “I don’t care what you call it — it’s broken!”

UPDATE 8:18 p.m. ET: It’s gonna be the Romney-Perry show all night, isn’t it?

UPDATE 8:17 p.m. ET: Now Romney’s turn to talk about the Ponzi Scheme Monstrosity. And now Perry responds. “It’s time for us to get back to the Constitution.

UPDATE 8:15 p.m. ET: Rick Perry talks about Social Security the Ponzi Scheme Monstrosity. “We’re gonna fix it!”

UPDATE 8:14 p.m. ET: Michele Bachmann gets the first question about Social Security, and she says Obama “stole” Medicare money.

UPDATE 8:12 p.m. ET: Ready to RUMMMBBBBLE!

UPDATE 8:11 p.m. ET: Diana Nagy sang the national anthem. Now the candidates are introducing themselves.


UPDATE: Protesters out front:

Bishop Tavis Grant of the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition.

SDS? They’re still around?



  1. Joe
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:13 am

    Is the buzz of excitement over these debates outdoing the buzz of cicadas in the live oaks outside? 

  2. t-dahlgren
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:17 am

    SDS? They’re still around?

    Apparently so, but not surprising considering that the membership would appear to be the same person I saw at a Gainesville CISPES rally in 1985.

  3. Joe
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:19 am

    Rumor has it Debbie Wasserman Schultz is going commando for the debate. 

  4. Datechguy's Blog » Blog Archive » Another GOP debate to blog…
    September 12th, 2011 @ 9:26 pm

    […] 9:22 p.m. That last round was bad for Romney and Perry and good for Bachmann, Paul and Santorum. Stacy Liveblogging too. […]

  5. M. Thompson
    September 13th, 2011 @ 1:41 am

    Interesting to read, and cheaper than getting cable or satellite TV.

  6. Charles
    September 13th, 2011 @ 1:54 am

    Herman Cain had the best message on Social Security reform. Michele Bachmann on repeal of ObamaCare and immigration. Hard to say who got the best lick in on Perry, he took so many. Ron Paul pushed the self-destruct button on 9/11. Not a good night for the Texans.

  7. Debate With Updates « That Mr. G Guy's Blog
    September 12th, 2011 @ 10:06 pm

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  8. Mike
    September 13th, 2011 @ 2:07 am

    Well, the animatronic Huntsman was working tonight.

  9. Dianna Deeley
    September 13th, 2011 @ 2:15 am

    Please, please, please, don’t make me have to vote for Romney.

    That’s all that can be cudgeled out of my weary brain tonight.

    Thank you.

  10. Peter Ingemi
    September 13th, 2011 @ 2:46 am

    I have to give this debate to Herman Cain in a close decision

  11. AngelaTC
    September 13th, 2011 @ 3:02 am

    CNN usually webcasts their events.

  12. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 3:46 am

    1. Michelle won again. That’s three times in a row. Or maybe I just want to do her.

    2. I don’t care what anybody says, when Huntsman told Perry he committed treason, that was funny on too many levels to keep track of.

    3. Ron Paul wants to draw up astrology charts in the White House, some arcane “Austrian” system even I’ve never heard of.

    4. Rick Perry hates little girls.

    5. Rick Santorum learned to smile watching Freddy Kruger movies.

    6. Mitt needs to hire somebody else to write his next book.

    7. Ron Paul doesn’t love Palestinians, he’s just explaining why they hate us so much.

    8. Newt Gingrich gets pissed off if you applaud him.

    9. At this rate, look for Godfather’s Pizza to outsource its pizza delivery service to Chile.

    10. At the next debate, Paul supporters should check their swastikas in at the door.

  13. Shawn Gillogly
    September 13th, 2011 @ 3:52 am

    If you haven’t heard of Austrian Economics, you should. It’s the viable modern contrast to Keynesianism. Otherwise, I don’t disagree too much.

    I thought Bachmann had a ‘very’ strong debate. But I think Perry held up better than many think he did. He was always going to be on the defensive, since he’s the frontrunner now.

  14. Chuck Coffer
    September 13th, 2011 @ 3:55 am

    I wonder if $untsman will endorse a republican after he droppes out? I suspect he won’t.

  15. Adjoran
    September 13th, 2011 @ 4:03 am

    Well, so much for the concession stand sales . . . nobody will be eating after that.

  16. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 4:20 am

    I don’t have a problem with any form of divination, I just don’t think its a sound basis to conduct fiscal or monetary policy. If I was President I wouldn’t go to war with China based on some random card I drew from a Tarot deck either. For that you need chicken entrails.

  17. M. Thompson
    September 13th, 2011 @ 4:30 am

    For divination on national policy, we should go big or go home.

    Slaughter a bull.  Or better yet, a boar, and serve the meat at dinner.

  18. Anamika
    September 13th, 2011 @ 4:50 am

    what a sad debate. audience sadistically cheering “death to the uninsured!” was the highlight.

    so many “updates” by RSM and so little comments….

    sad indeed.

  19. Anonymous
    September 13th, 2011 @ 5:44 am

    You never answered my question from the other day.

  20. Anamika
    September 13th, 2011 @ 5:54 am

    What question? I don’t recollect. I recall only your standard “Dungbat” response to any of my comments.

    Link please?

  21. Anonymous
    September 13th, 2011 @ 8:03 am

    If I were there I’d have asked a question nobody ever asks:

    “How will American foreign policy address the roots of the immigration crisis – the spread of violent organized crime and the Mexican government’s economy-unfriendly policies?”

    Enough talk about walls and deportations. Let’s start working toward long-term solutions!

  22. Threedonia
    September 13th, 2011 @ 9:39 am

    I gotta say… in all sincerity…. that series of posts was awesome.  You’re the Pascal of GOP presidential debates….

    It pisses me off to no end that Thad McCotter is not up there but Huntsman is.  I know McCotter is not going to win (alas), but he would be great at these debates.

    “Ponzi scheme” thing is a bit old.  Anyone who thinks Perry means “Ponzi scheme” as a literal description of SS is being unfair.  “Ponzi scheme” has entered the language referring to any fraudulent money scheme regardless of the specifics of the actual Ponzi’s fraud of the 20th century.  Bachmann et al. need to move on on that one.

    I thought she came off as shrill tonight — the Gardasil thing is a non-starter… talking “big Pharma” is a Lefty thing and she’s better than that.  Also liked Perry’s come back about $5K. 

  23. Matt Lewis
    September 13th, 2011 @ 9:41 am

    I give the funniest line of the night to Huntsman, when he brought up NGOs.  After all, nothing says strong conservative like “hippie.”

  24. Matt Lewis
    September 13th, 2011 @ 9:41 am


  25. Matt Lewis
    September 13th, 2011 @ 10:01 am

    One issue I have with Bachmann is how she talks about Obamacare.  Like she’s the only one who wants to, you know, repeal it and stuff.

    OTOH, I like that she also gives Frank-Dodd a shout out.

  26. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:20 pm

    I don’t care about the Gardasil crap, but the only thing wrong really with what Bachman said is she didn’t look at Perry while she was talking about him. Her words would have had more impact if she could have looked him in the eye. Instead, she kept turned away from him. I wouldn’t think it would have been that hard to look at him. Seeing as how she has a titanium spine and all.

  27. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:38 pm

    I think her main point there was more against Romney, saying he would give all the states an opt out. I don’t think she was really saying there was anything wrong with that, just that in and of itself it’s not good enough. I can definitely see her point. If you just give all the states a waiver, that’s fine, but what if the next President comes along and revokes that waiver? What if some states want ObamneyCare, and they mount a court challenge to the waivers, and they win in the Supreme Court? Michelle was saying you need to dig out the entire system from the roots, otherwise it will become a problem all over again sooner or later. And she’s definitely right.

  28. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:40 pm

    I’m pretty sure that was the Paulbots. That was exactly why I said they need to hand their swastikas in at the door during the next debate. They are absolute idiots, and they just handed the DNC their newest set of talking points, undoubtedly.

  29. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:45 pm

    I can answer that one, at least how it should be answered. Repeal Posse Comitatus, unitarily declare Nafta null and void, and militarize the border on a temporary, emergency basis. Then work toward a diplomatic solution with the Mexican government, based on rooting out the violent gangs. Offer to engage in a joint collaborative effort and then go after the gangs with guns blazing. No more of this concern for constitutional rights for people that amount to armed militant insurgents and invaders. In the meantime, encourage reform of the Mexican economy, and make any further revived trade deals contingent on those reforms.

  30. ThePaganTemple
    September 13th, 2011 @ 12:52 pm

    Now you’re talking. A wild boar hunt followed by an open pit barbecue, right outside the Gitmo compound, during the fastings days of Ramadan.  Hell, make it an event, televise it. Then, on to Iran and whoever else wants to get in line. They think they’re badasses?

  31. Matt Lewis
    September 13th, 2011 @ 1:53 pm

    I can see a lot of room for criticism on the Gardasil stuff, but from what I’ve seen and heard, the one objection seems to have something to do with the perception that it’s encouraging promiscuity.  This seems pretty dumb.  Vaccinations don’t encourage kids to have sex.  Biology (and TV, and…) encourages kids to have sex.  Also, I hear wine coolers and pup tents play a role.

    On the Big Government front…yeah, OK.  It’s not quite the same as, say, measles, and maybe this is one area where I’ve become too desensitized, but adding one more vaccination to the giant list probably seemed like a no brainer at the time.  I think my main reaction to this is, “Meh.”

  32. Matt Lewis
    September 13th, 2011 @ 3:07 pm

    Yeah, she’s obviously correct that you have to legislatively get rid of it. Is she really trying to imply that this would occur to no one else?  Assuming Zero goes, once again, the first bill in the House will presumably be another repeal attempt.

    She’s got a very Congress-centric view point.  This means she’s probably more aware of the nitty gritty of recent legislation than the rest of them, and I think it serves her well when she brings up stuff like Frank-Dodd, although I wonder if enough of the public knows what that is.

    Obviously, she has to play up her experience, but does anyone really think this is a differentiator from other Republicans?

  33. Anonymous
    September 13th, 2011 @ 5:49 pm

    Not actually the right move, but the thinking is going the right direction.

  34. Anonymous
    September 13th, 2011 @ 6:31 pm

    The pedantic decry using the term ponzi scheme, reminds me of those who insist you can’t call zero a socialist because he hasn’t advocated direct government ownership of all means of production. The differences between SS and what Berni is in jail for is that SS hasn’t collapsed yet, it’s been legalized and most important it’s mandatory.

    You may be underestimating how big the Gardasil issue is going to be. It’s not just about “Big Pharma” which is part of the overall crony capitalism issue. It’s also about Parental rights to choose what’s appropriate for their children. Whatever the merits or lack of merit of the policy, imposing it by fiat was a most unconservative approach and as fundamentalist Christian Perry should have foreseen that many would be offended by the implied promiscuity of their children. 

  35. The Prisoner on Flight 1884 : The Other McCain
    September 13th, 2011 @ 9:28 pm

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