Which gets me to smoking pot.
Statistics are somewhat hazy, perhaps due to reluctance for respondents to be honest in this area, but roughly 50 percent of Americans between the age of 20-50 have smoked marijuana at least once, at least as of 2002. Regardless of whether that figure is a bit high or low, pretty much everybody concedes that. Now by having written those last two sentences, you, the well-trained critical thinker might be saying to yourself:
- "Scot is for Patsy because he's softening Madrid's own admission that she smoked pot back in the day by saying that what Patsy did is the same thing roughly half of American adults have done."
- "Scot has smoked pot, and may still be smoking pot. In fact, he might be stoned right now and is assuaging his own guilt by coming up with some numbers saying he is far from alone."
- "I wish I could find some decent pot, it's been forever since I got really baked."
Which is why I don't think debates, even TV debates, matter much. The actual attendance at these debates is small, and the ability for those who attempt to convince us critical thinking readers who won is also small. Even typical TV debate viewership (which really isn't that big despite how important we try to make it) consists almost exclusively of already convinced voters looking for reassurance their candidate is best. Then they go try to tell some other folks who didn't see that their candidate won.
All of which is ineffective for two reasons: 1. that critical thinking thing mentioned above; 2. the head-scratchingly irritating fact that tons of adults don't give a rat's ass about the Wilson/Madrid race, the debates, or what certain political-junkie bloggers think who won what or whether a candidate smoking pot is important.
Regarding the second point above: yes, one wonders if the "tons of adults" who don't care about politics might be the same large group that has smoked pot, but I haven't seen any data on a direct cause/effect relationship.
Thinking that debates don't matter much is not a popular blog/media position these days, days in which reader/viewership is heightened by: 1. zealous candidate backers looking for validation; 2. guilty possible voters who slept in Sunday instead of going to the debate.
To those who consider pooh-poohing debates as unimportant to be politico-apostasy, let's see how much the polling/voting numbers change because of these debates. Let's see how many undecideds decide to vote for the candidate judged the "winner", somehow, in this haphazard string of upcoming Madrid/Wilson debates. I submit that studying those figures will eventually show that this blogomediasphere debate frenzy will prove to be no more important than the TV hype about the latest version of "Survivor", regardless of who is chosen to have "won" the debates, smoked pot or much else.