Wolraich: Obama at the Gates of... Gates
Dr. C: In Praise of Writing Binges
Maiello: Gatsby Doesn't Grate
Gentlemen, your objectives are clear.
Obama: Get those nuts on the table or the pedestal or whatever it is you're using. Wait, it's Town Hall style. Just thrust out your pelvis then. You're big! You're bad! You're mad as hell and you're not going to take it any more! (It's OK, it's just pretend.)
Romney: No apologies! Keep on rolling out those double-speak plans and fake studies. Americans suck at math! They do not care if man means what he says so long as he says what he means. You know that I mean.
Crowley: You are the master of your domain. I want to see some alpha males asses get kicking!
Uncommitted voters: Try not to look dumb, you're on national television. (Seriously, you're still uncommitted?)
9:06 Romney promises to hire all the kids in America.
9:08 No more "green jobs." Obama is now into "manufacturing jobs." Throws in a little jab at Romney. Not good enough. I said NUTS! But at least it looks like you're awake this time. Red Bull?
9:10 [Gasp!] Obama said "isn't true." First zinger of the night: Romney doesn't have a five-point plan, he has a one point plan, help the people at the top. Drink up, folks!
9:12 Crowley, shutting 'em up. I like it.
[My live feed is getting delayed, so if these times don't look right, quit whining and synchronize your clock to my schedule.]
9:15 Obama, you seem to grasp the basic concept of making an attack, but you're still missing something. Try to look incensed.
9:18 Romney has a theme for the night: I'm the Job-Guy! Keep it up big guy!
9:21 Easy there tigers. We're being buried in "not trues." You're both losing a little gravitas here.
9:23 Obama's grill is finally getting hot. I like it. Burn that steak, baby!
9:25 Romney, you're starting to look like a little bit of a weenie with the "my turn to talk" routine. Better to just let wind thing go. No one cares about wind anyway. Wind blows.
Damn! CNN.com crapped out on me. I missed Obama's big swing, most of it.
9:34 Obama: The Math Doesn't Add Up. It was a helluva of speech. Well done, sir!
9:36 Romney, like I said, no apologies! Keep it up.
9:37 Crowley, you go grrrrl!
9:40 Obama, not really seeing the Pell grant connection to women's pay, but I'll let it slide.
9:42 Romney, we're all glad that you treat your staff well, but you do understand that all the people you're promising jobs to are not actually going to work for you, right?
9:45 Obama gets his nuts out for women. That's how you should have answered the last question, dude. But it was nicely done if belated.
9:48 Romney, you're still suffering from the weenie factor. Stop whining about time!
9:53 Wow, Obama turns praise of George Bush into a criticism of Romney. Nice touch, sir.
9:56 I have to say in all seriousness that Obama has managed to put Romney on the defensive for the entire debate. He just spoke about his own record at length. But then he followed it up with a criticism of Romney. I suspect that it will distract Romney from the attack. Let's see.
9:58 Nope, Romney goes for the jugular. Aw crap, CNN.com shut me down again. Why don't they do this during the boring speeches.
10:00 Maybe I missed something, but Romney lost his way to the jugular. Now he's talking about immigration. Dude, that was your shot! You gave as a mediocre zinger and then changed the subject.
10:03 Romney, my friend, you walked into that one. Now we're on immigration, and you're back on the defensive. This not good, dude. You need those Latino voters. You didn't think this one through.
10:05 Romney, Romney, Romney...you're sputtering, my friend. Americans don't want clarifications about your position on e-fucking-verify. You're weenie-ing out!
10:08 Obama made a funny: "Not as big yours"
10:11 "When folks mess with Americans, we go after them." OK, Pres, put your wordsters on that one. I think you can do a bit better than that.
10:14 Romney, you're off your game, man. I lost you on the Libya thing. You're looking kinda shell-shocked.
10:17 Righteous indignation from Obama! Now that's what I'm talkin' about.
10:18 Crowley with the live-action fact-check! She wins the debate moderator of year award just for that.
10:20 Bravo to Uncommitted Voter for broaching the verboten topic of gun control. Obama wiffs it.
10:22 The NRA executives are salivating as they plan their next fundraiser.
10:26 Crowley fires a bullet at Romney! (Legally purchased)
10:28 Not sure why you're jumping into education, Obama. Important sure, but this is wrap up time. Close. The. Deal.
10:32 Obama, much better. Hit Romney on his job boasts. This is your chance to close, my friend.
10:36 Romney: "I care, I really, really care, really really, and I love God" Now you're doing the used-car salesman thing. You sound anxious.
10:38 Low blow, Obama, hitting the 47 percent without Romney having a chance to respond. Well done sir! Oh damn you CNN!!!!!!!!!! I missed the last 30 seconds.
Please pardon me while I launch a small cyberattack on CNN's servers. I will return with my much-anticipated debate verdict in a few minutes.
OK, here it is, the moment you've all be waiting for. Take a seat while I blow you away with my searing post-debate analysis.
Obama: Mission accomplished, my friend. You were tough, you were focused, you were at ease, you were awake. You even got incensed once and it was very nearly convincing. Yes, I saw it despite CNN.com's attempt to thwart me. It must be admitted that you're not the best debater ever to grace America's HD TVs and 1280x800 macbook monitors (well maybe, but that's only because they're new inventions), but it was the finest debate performance that I've seen from you. There were no slam dunks (except for the one that Crowley assisted), but you kept Romney on the defensive, and you didn't let him get away with shit. Well done.
Romney: You looked like a weenie. Yeah, I'm talking to you. You didn't apologize, true, and you didn't wilt, but you got frazzled and defensive. Your job was hammer Obama like the last time so that people would keep imagining you as a president. Instead you complained about your talk time and got huffy when you though Obama misrepresented your positions. America doesn't want huffy. America wants ass-kicking. And you did not ass-kick, plain and simple. You will pay for it in the polls.
Crowley: It was a tough gig, what with all those Undecided Voters and Presidential Candidates, but you nailed it. You gave them their space but kicked butt when butt needed kicking. The instant fact-check was a beautiful thing. Best moderation I've seen. You win the debate.
Undecided Voters: No one cares
Good-night, Obama. Good-night Romney. I'll see you at the next debate. If you're lucky, I'll spare you my withering commentary. If you need pointers, in the meantime, you know where to reach me.