Everything I know about Mavericks, I learned from Top Gun


"Maverick, it's not your flying, it's your attitude. The enemy's
dangerous, but right now you're worse than the enemy: you're dangerous
and foolish. You may not like the guys flying with you, they may not
like you. But whose side are you on?"

– Iceman

Meanwhile, some of my favorite (paraphrased) quotes from friends over the Internet about the debates:

  • "Who had "maverick" in fantasy debate?" – Jamie (who has a great newish blog)
  • "New rule, you can't be a maverick and call yourself a maverick" – Kevin D.
  • "if she winks one more time I'm going to punch her face." – Krissie
  • Mark Bates is wondering when general McClellan came back from the dead to fight in Afghanistan.
  • "Newculer" – Sarah P. 

Here's the problem though.  No one is really talking about Biden.  Palin is doing a great job at what I think she was hired to do, draw attention away from the Obama campaign. 

Consider search volume from Google:

Picture 16

While McCain's trend line is mirroring Obama's, with less volume, Palin has charted her own course and is averaging way more interest than the big O. No one is searching for Biden.  And that's probably not because they already know everything there is to know about him. 

I keep reading about and talking to people who insist that Biden won.  And factually, rationally, he probably did.  The problem is that people make decisions emotionally, then back up that decision immediately with rational reasoning.  Palin did a great job of bringing that Pitbull/hockeymom thing to the debate, which even when she didn't have anything to back it up, made it look like she was bringing the pain.  And while it irritated the ever loving hell out of both Krissie and I, I could see how it would appeal to a lot of people. 

The other thing that Palin is good at is sounding different.  I get a sense that when people hear politicians talking about political things that they have just started tuning it out, they've heard it a million times before, and we've learned not to trust rational arguments about politicians and their past since most of the time they are instantly refuted and the truth ends up being somewhere in between.  So what we have is someone who talks a lot different than the usual politician doing a good job of stealing the show from an actual politician.  Did you ever see that Family Guy episode when Stewie hijacked Brian's radio talk show and turned it into "Dingo and the Baby"? 

All of this has me worried.  I feel like politicians are learning how to game this system in a whole new way…and I don't like it.  This shouldn't be such a circus.  This is the future of the most powerful civilization on Earth … which seems to now be teetering on the edge of a very dark and very scary abyss.