No, the quandary isn't what you think. It's that at the same time the debate is going on, the beloved Chicago Cubs will be playing in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series. Which to watch? O which to watch?!
It's not as easy as just way, "Oh, tape the debate, and watch it later." First, a presidential debate is awfully important and newsworthy. But more, I also like the after-debate, switching between channel to check in on the various commentary. There's no flipping back-and-worth when you're watching on tape.
Yet I'm decided on watching the Cubs game live and recording all else. But not for the reason you think. It's because when I watch the Cubs games during the playoffs, I turn the sound off the television and listen over the Internet to the play-by-play from the Chicago announcers, Pat Hughes and Ron Coomer, along with their TV announcer Len Kasper who sits in for an inning. (I do this even with there being a 1-second or so difference with the sound out of sync.) If I record the game on my DVR, I wouldn't be able to hear it with Pat doing the call. And that wins out.
Besides, it's the Cubs. In the playoffs. And they've been playing really sucky lately and are down two games to one, in a best of seven series. So -- okay, it's not that they need me, but -- after 108 years of losing, you don't give up your live support that easily.
And so, "record the debate" it is. What I've also done, though, to sort of, kind of create a workaround to my post-debate problem is I'm also recording the post-debate on both MSNBC and CNN. So, I can sort of, kind of create a semi-version of clicking back and forth.
Back to debate.
I'm not going to analyze it. We're in "You're on your own" territory with this sucker. I do have three wishes that I hope occur, not that I expect the first two of them to.
The first is that when Donald Trump gets going dark and doing his best to bring up all manner of non-political issue matters, which I have a hard time thinking he won't do, repeatedly, that Hillary Clinton answer the very first time, "Okay, I just want to make clear that this is a debate to help decide who is President of the United States. This is a very serious matter. We've had two debates that I'm most observers feel have gone off the rails. I won't be a party to a third. I've answered these questions endlessly for two years. People know what I've said and know the results, and they either understand it all at this point, or they don't. There's nothing any more that can be added that is different. Nothing. What's important now, I believe, is what impacts the lives directly of the American people. Tonight, I will only discuss political issues and ones that are of the most concern to the American public. The economy, foreign affairs, education, the environment, health care and more. Donald can talk about whatever he wants. This is what I will be talking about tonight. We are in an election for President of the United States. It's far too important. And serious."
And the second is when a question comes up about the Wikileak emails, she answer -- "I understand completely why this question is being asked. But you must understand, this was all private property. And it was not only stolen, but our intelligence services have determined it was stolen by the Russians. An stolen by the Russians to influence our election. In fact, a Russian hacker was just arrested in Prague for this crime. We also know that some of the material is not only stolen, but forged. I absolutely understand the interest in private discussions as we tried to figure out strategies. But again, this is private property stolen by Russians to affect the United States government, and I will not be a party to letting that succeed."
I don't expect either of these things to happen, at least in this way, though perhaps there will be a version of them. What I also hope happens, and this is more possible, is that Secretary Clinton be more blunt this time in saying, "That is completely untrue and you are absolutely wrong" ever time Donald Trump tells a lie -- which we can be pretty sure he will. She doesn't have to go into detail why it was untrue, but I just don't want to see Trump lies let sit in the air unchallenged -- and besides, being told he's lying and wrong have a good chance of having him have a meltdown.
Now, if you're excuse me, I have to go prepare for the Cubs game...
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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