Some thoughts on the Debate just completed.
I agree with most of the CNN pundits that both candidates did well, though Obama probably won it on points. McCain seemed much more relaxed and comfortable tonight, so he came across much better than last time. Obama was also effective.
On issues, I'm not sure that I heard anything completely new, except perhaps McCain's proposal for the government to buy up the mortgages in trouble around the country, and I have no idea if that's good or not. McCain's health care proposal is a bit scary, in that it discourages employer-provided insurance by taxing it, while providing a modest tax credit to buy health insurance on the open market. Anyone who's tried that knows that the older you get, the more expensive (often prohibitively) the premiums, and that's not even speaking of the problem of rejection because of pre-existing conditions.
Once again, I find both of their answers on Russia to be overly hawkish and dangerous, without understanding of what has happened since the end of the Cold War. Call me a dove if you want, but I think we've badly mishandled our relationship with Russia over the last nearly 20 years.
I think I prefer the standard debate format rather than this townhall format, though I'm not sure why. Maybe I don't like to see the candidates wandering around the stage, and going up and patting the questioners on the shoulder. (Is that why I prefer to preach behind a pulpit rather than wandering around the chancel?)