Debated to death

Let's get this out of the way: Mitt Romney did a better job during last night's presidential debate than President Barack Obama. He was more forceful -- or as forceful as he is capable of being -- and controlled the tone. But the points he made were built on easily disprovable lies and distortions.

Obama, for his part, was barely there. He let the lies stand, failed to take the initiative and helped move the debate to the right by accepting some well-worn, if untrue corporate talking points on Social Security and Medicare.

That said, the debate last night is unlikely to do much for or to the candidates. Yes, the Democratic base -- and progressives more generally -- is angry and the GOP may have regained some of its footing (though it is hard to see how, given that Romney made his first move to the center and tossed his right wing into the drink last night).

Last night's spectacle was far from spectacular and more than a bit wonky and boring. It is hard to see how the small sliver of the electorate who remains undecided will be moved by what went down last night.

More likely, these viewers -- if they watched -- we're pushed to boredom, may have changed the channel (reruns of old sitcoms on Antennae TV) or opted to do their ironing.

So, one down and three to go.

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Read poetry at The Subterranean.

Suburban Pastoral, a chapbook by Hank Kalet, available here.

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