Magazine article The Nation

Let's Really Get It On!

Magazine article The Nation

Let's Really Get It On!

Article excerpt

By the time you read this, the so-called TV debates will be under way. Whether these political quiz shows (Who Do You Trust--With the Country?) turn out to be trenchant or trifling, they aren't real debates by any standard definition. The candidates had veto power over their questioners and were allowed to negotiate a congenial format.

If the TV talkrests followed the only objective criterion for participation among the many suggested by the Commission on Presidential Debates-being on the ballot in enough states to have a mathematical chance of winning an electoral college majority--then the candidates of the Libertarian and New Alliance parties (sigh) should have been invited. But we suspect that the main qualification for crashing the two-party monopoly is having $100 million to throw around on half-hour infomercials. (Next time around can we look for video market wise candidates like Cher and the guy with a cure for baldness, whose infomercials touch millions? …

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