Was it a “game-changer”? Did McCain “take the gloves off”? Did “Main Street” rule over “Wall Street”? Is there another hackneyed expression we could judge this debate by? Here’s some cliché-free post-debate analysis rounded up from the blogosphere.

First, here are the numbers on who "won" from CNN and CBS News. Now, let’s move onto actual policy matters.

Reason’s Matt Welch is not pleased with McCain’s new and rather vague mortgage buy-up plan:

"I would order the Secretary of the Treasury to immediately buy up the bad home loan mortgages in America and renegotiate at the new value of those homes, at the diminished value of those homes and let people make those, be able to make those payments and stay in their homes," McCain said. "Is it expensive? Yes."

Is it yet another McCain Hail Mary pass in a campaign that will soon be remembered for nothing but? Also, yes. And it was the latest indication in a grim season for free marketeers that there is no corner of American life that leading politicians aren't eagerly lining up to nationalize.

The plan has been latched onto by pundits as the freshest policy proposal from last night’s debate, but as Rooflines notes, FactCheck.org explains why it’s actually pretty stale (as in Obama and the bailout have both been there already):

Julie Hanus
10/8/2008 5:07:49 PM

Hannah, may I submit to the list of weird geezer flags an astonishing TWENTY-TWO uses of the phrase "my friends" (or the singular variant: "my friend")? As you already pointed out in a recent blog (http://www.utne.com/2008-09-25/Politics/68-Ways-Not-to-Say-White-Voter.aspx?blogid=30), the phrase is a humorous highlight on We Are Respectable Negroes' running tally of euphemisms for white voters. But after about a dozen uses, it started to take on a creepy, National-Grandpa-like-tone to me. C'mere, my friends, and give grampaw a hug!

Elizabeth Ryan_2
10/8/2008 5:02:02 PM

Exactly. I also think Arianna Huffington makes a good point in her reaction post: "At the end of the debate, Brokaw asked McCain to get out of the way of his Teleprompter, so he could sign off. Brokaw might as well have been speaking on behalf of the future: Senator McCain can you please get out of the way so we can get on with it?"

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