Watch full debate here

A good debate, McCain tried his usual lines of attack but Obama was prepared. What we could most take from it – was the differences between the two men. The McCain style is to attack almost without looking and the Obama style – to gather the facts and make a solid advance given a broad view of factors.

McCain was undoubtedly more respectful to Obama – bar a couple of incidents most notable – when he referred to Obama as ‘that one’. It seems to be slowly sinking in that Obama is for real – and not only is he there as McCain’s challenger – but also what Obama says and thinks has gravity with the American public.

I thought McCain got off the a running start and looked for a moment like – he was 40 years younger (maybe thirty yrs) – but that soon dried up – and I was honestly worried about McCain’s health – he appeared pent up – shaken and sometimes out of breath – that it really brought home his frailty – but more it had the effect of making him look desperate and even begging.

Obama clearly wants to take America along another vein – and it is not at all clear that McCain wants to do the same – instead he seems to be a man who is bolstering himself on what he knows already – and where he has been – and added to this McCain seems to be ignoring – the atmosphere of change – that is sweeping the world – in the environment, foreign relations to name a few. Where McCain seems to be looking to put the old puzzle together better – Obama seems to be gathering the pieces to put together a new puzzle. That’s change – whereas what McCain seems to talking about is an alteration.

Obama is saying it may be necessary to use aggression – but under his administration – he would use every effort – including diplomacy and gathering the support of our allies – to avert ever having to use such force. When Obama talks about aggression – McCain attempts to make it look as though he is being reckless – not only has Obama’s ideas been copied by the Bush administration – both making cross border attacks into Pakistan’s lawless border – and in dealing with Iran.

Obama used his segments wisely – to clearly lay out a broad a plan as possible – over scoring points – he seemed to be more focused on relaying his message in the most positive and direct way as he could. McCain was also clear on many points – but this was lessened by the fact that he was maybe looking for a punch up or a dust up – in the end McCain did not show himself at all superior. And that matters in a debate.

As for scoring points – Obama comes across as being more measured – and through this his brilliance comes out. He starts off his segments – kind of like the water that comes onto the shore – first the water is by your feet and next you know – it’s up to your knees. That’s Obama’s style. And one of the best examples of this was when he talked about energy and the need to come together – to effect change.

McCain’s style seems very – us and them – and then ‘them’ is made in to a target – them could be Barack Obama and them could be Russia – but it is almost as if he still flying the plane – as a naval bomber – and has to solve the problem via bombing. And he portrays himself almost as the man who knows how to bomb – but more there is a phantom army in support of his efforts. He has been in the Senate for many years – and he says I know how to catch Bin Laden – and another thing he frequently says is I know how to win a war. And what is Russia, for McCain – it’s the KGB – over an evolving nation – that most in Europe would attest to. And how he plans to deal with it – in his short answer – it seems would be like going back to the good old days – or pure aggression between the two nations – US and the USSR, over the reality of a far more open Russia that looks very different today.

With McCain’s shaky health – and Palin’s pursuit of trigger happiness – I would be worried about this line of attempt to deal with the problems we face with Russia.

Another part of the debate focused on healthcare and taxes. On taxes McCain seems to have switched direction on that one – telling Obama – in gambling man’s style – that maybe he would not lower taxes for the rich /those making over $250,000/yr. That’s when Obama retorted – that the Straight Talk Express has lost its wheel. If McCain has changed his mind here – then he agrees with Biden – in this economic environment that kind of expenditure on the rich – is unpatriotic – as it is the poorer people who need money more in tougher times. And goes directly in the face of what Palin has been yelling on the stump.

All in all it was clear that Obama – has become more adapt at debating McCain – one of the highlights was when he said – McCain keeps saying I don’t understand – yes I don’t understand how we could have gone to war – in Iraq when Al-Qaeda was in Afghanistan.

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