“People love telling war stories: Because we mostly purchase cheaply manufactured presents at stores, rather than craft something ourselves, we want the gift itself to have a more dramatic and personal backstory than the laws of supply and demand or the container ships running across the Pacific. And so we have to brave the long lines, stay up all night, and dodge pepper-spray. Just think of the craziest Black Friday shopper in your family. Don’t they just relish telling their shopping horror-stories through Christmas dinner? Plus, a good Black Friday war story can guilt someone into appreciating a crappy gift.”—
Presidential debates, says NBC News Political Director and Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd, are now part of the winnowing process. Instead of going to a small state and wooing caucus-goers, Republican presidential hopefuls are going on national cable to see if they can resonate with the voters.
With 26 GOP debates currently scheduled between May 5, 2011, and March 19, 2012 (17 of them before the Iowa caucuses), the fight for the party’s nomination is now played out in living rooms and dens around the country as much as in diners, candidate coffees and small events in Iowa and New Hampshire.
If Chuck Todd is correct — and I have no doubt that he is — we now have a nominating process that values certain skills and abilities in candidates that have nothing to do with governing.