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Jared

I found Warren's balance, giving each candidate equal time, equal questions, and equal weight admirable. He clearly works well with people of different positions, whether they fully agree with him on all issues or not.

The actual candidates seemed less than interesting in their answers. Nothing much really surprising or new here.

Responding to the last bit posted (the alternative view), this country really only works because we all disagree with one another. Homogeneity in perspective will be the death of the democratic experiment in the U.S.

 JohnFH

Jared,

Thank you first of all for your excellent blogging.

For people who follow politics closely, Obama and McCain's answers were not surprising. But for the majority of those who heard the answers, they learned a few things they will ponder all the way into the voting booth. As it should be.

Ros

Shined? Shone? Is that a US/UK thing?

 JohnFH

Good one, Ros.

Here is what englishpage.com says:

With the verb shine, the form shined is preferred in everyday English, possibly because shone sounds too much like the form shown, which is the past participle of show. However, in Internet searches the form shone occurs quite frequently because of its use in literary English.

The Columbia Guide to Standard American English (1993) is more prescriptive:

This strong verb now has a full set of weak forms as well: past tense and past participle are each either shined or shone. There is some interchangeability in those forms, but there are also some semantic distinctions. It’s always He shined his shoes (never He shone his shoes), but it can be The sun shined all day, although The sun shone all day is more frequent. Nor is it simply the transitive/intransitive distinction that governs choice: transitive He shined his light into the cellar and He shone his light into the cellar are both acceptable (although British English uses shone almost exclusively in such sentences). Intransitive sentences can use either shined or shone, but shone is more prevalent, especially in Edited English, unless the meaning is “to polish”: His cheeks shone with embarrassment. With wax and elbow grease we shined all day.

Google "Kennedy shined" and "Kennedy shone" and watch what pops up, and in what sources. UK usage is uniformly in favor of "shone," or almost; usage here is divided.

Alan Lenzi

I didn't watch the debate because I don't get TV, but I saw some of the questions and read reports. One blog entry that struck me as particularly interesting was from the Washington Post blogger David Waters, who considers what Warren might better have asked (here). For example, instead of asking, Does evil exist and what do we do if it does (paraphrasing)?, Waters suggests this: "As Christians, how should we confront violent evil such as terrorism?" Instead of asking the candidates to "define rich," he might rather have asked, "As a Christian, define the difference between need and greed. How much is enough?"

Despite my mixed emotions about Warren doing this interview, at least he didn't pray for rain of biblical proportions on the night of one candidate's acceptance speech!

Alan Lenzi

Here's the rain link.

Ros

Thanks, John - that's one I didn't pink up one while I was there.

 JohnFH

Alan,

I'm impressed by the fact that you don't get TV. In my household, we purposely don't get most channels, but even the major networks carry programs I wish my kids (and I) were never exposed to.

David Waters sounds good. Warren's "definition of rich" question was lame, sort of what I would expect from a well-to-do context in Orange County CA.

Ros,

I assume you meant "pick up on." However, "pink up on" might make an interesting neologism.

Daniel

John,

Thanks for the link to the full videos. I've enjoyed watching them. When I heard the "does evil exist" question, my mind went to Augustine, obviously the candidates did not... anyway. I was disappointed to see a really good idea perpetuate the two-party mentality of this political process. Why not include libertarian candidate Bob Barr? I'm sure he'll also be excluded from the debates, as third parties and independents always are. In fact, in an interview (on ABC I believe) Warren said that he is registered as an independent. It seems that this good idea would have been better had all voices been heard.

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