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Friday, July 31, 2015

And the Winner Is? Who knows?

In six days one of the biggest shows of the year is taking place in Cleveland, OH. It is the first of what appears to be eleven Republican debates. Of course the first debate in either party is always the most exciting, because of the size of the field, and the wide open nature of the forum. At this point nobody has really established a loyal following, all of the voters are just walking down the buffet line, trying a little of this, in the past it might have been a little taste of Gingrich on a Balanced Budget roll, or perhaps a little Kerry on an Increased Educational Opportunity wafer. Normally, nobody has really picked a main course yet.

"The Donald" has thrown a monkey wrench into the works. He has taken a commanding lead in the polls, mostly by not really answering questions. Always a good tactic this early, but "the Donald" has taken this to new heights. Sometimes he doesn't answer the question while it is still being asked, talking right over the top of the press person.

It is not too difficult to imagine Donald Trump talking from the beginning of the debate to the end, without stopping. Moderators fidgeting nervously with microphones, pens and note cards. Other candidates watching in helpless terror as the debate is turned into the latest installment of reality television.

How would this play in America. Probably pretty well if the current slate of programming is any
indication. It could turn into Presidential Survivor, or Presidential Professional Wrestling. A weekly display of brutality, subterfuge, and oversized egos and personalities. All vying for the love, or despisement of the American television audience. Or, if it should be a little lighter it could be more like the Harlem Globetrotters barnstorming across the country, winning game after game against a determined but over matched foe.

Of course, the politicians who are not practiced reality television stars are not in favor of the transition. Across Iowa and New Hampshire they are meeting with advisers, and coaches, and strategists about the best way to combat the Trump menace.

Rob Portman, from Ohio, who seems to be a pretty decent guy, considering he is a politician, said the best tactic in this situation would probably be "one liners, and humor." Avoid getting drawn into the rhetoric, and anger. It could draw attention to a candidate and become a clip shown again and again. He stopped short of suggesting a "Last Comic Standing" approach, but it might work.

Anyway, things are warming up. I am stocking up on snacks, something healthy, and drinks, probably carbonated water, and getting ready for the first show down of the year. It could be epic. I hope the good guy wins.