Debatable Freeze Frames

You know how an illusionist tricks you? By redirecting your concentration. The only way to catch how they do what they do, is to freeze frame the video. When I see debates (which I rarely watch), I feel like there is a bunch of running around, distracting, and redirecting going on. By the end, do we really know what really happened, or do we fall for the illusion of what they wanted us to think happened?

So let’s try to freeze frame some of the moments in the debate last night. Wash out all the redirecting and stone walling, and see if we can figure out what was really said by each candidate. Are you game? Let’s go!

I’m going to use a transcript of the debate. One, it should be word for word. Two, it means I’m not distracted by rolling eyes, big smiles, and hand gestures. It’s just straight up text. And three, it means I can fast forward past all the junk. I’ve copied their quotes word for word from various transcripts found on the net. Of course, those are only as reliable as the transcribers, but I’m sure it’s close enough for getting us the truths we need.

Achieving Prosperity

Jobs

The moderator, Lester Holt, prior to his question indicated:

  • “six straight years of job growth”
  • “incomes have increased at a record rate”
  • “income inequality remains significant”
  • “nearly half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck”

There were several questions asked in this segment:

  • “why are you a better choice than your opponent to create the kinds of jobs that will put more money into the pockets of American works?”
  • “How are you going to bring back the industries that have left this country for cheaper labor overseas? How, specifically, are you going to tell American manufacturers that you have to come back?”
  • “How do you bring back — specifically bring back jobs, American manufacturers? How do you make them bring the jobs back?”

Hillary Clinton

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. jobs in infrastructure, in advanced manufacturing, innovation and technology, clean, renewable energy, and small business, because most of the new jobs will come from small business.
  2. we need to have smart, fair trade deals.
  3. have a tax system that rewards work and not just financial transactions
  4. more we can do for the middle class, the more we can invest in you, your education, your skills, your future, the better we will be off and the better we’ll grow.
  5. making investments where we can grow the economy. Take clean energy. Some country is going to be the clean- energy superpower of the 21st century.
  6. deploy a half a billion more solar panels.
  7. build a new modern electric grid.
  8. I’m going to have a special prosecutor. We’re going to enforce the trade deals we have, and we’re going to hold people accountable.

Other statements which may or may not be relevant but not to the question:

  1. we have to build an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top.
  2. raising the national minimum wage
  3. equal pay for women’s work
  4. see more companies do profit-sharing
  5. paid family leave, earned sick days
  6. affordable child care and debt-free college
  7. having the wealthy pay their fair share and close the corporate loopholes
  8. I’m a great believer in all forms of energy, but we’re putting a lot of people out of work. Our energy policies are a disaster.
  9. Trans-Pacific Partnership …. I was against it once it was finally negotiated and the terms were laid out
  10. new jobs with rising incomes, investments, not in more tax cuts that would add $5 trillion to the debt.
  11. I have proposed would cut regulations and streamline them for small businesses … paid for by raising taxes on the wealthy

Donald Trump

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. We have to stop our companies from leaving the United States
  2. I’ll be reducing taxes tremendously, from 35 percent to 15 percent for companies, small and big businesses.
  3. renegotiate our trade deals
  4. first thing you do is don’t let the jobs leave
  5. going to have to tax them coming in [tax the products made outside the US]
  6. giving companies incentives to build new companies or to expand

Other statements which may or may not be relevant but not to the question:

  1. As far as child care is concerned and so many other things, I think Hillary and I agree on that. We probably disagree a little bit as to numbers and amounts and what we’re going to do …
  2. NAFTA, which is the single worst trade deal ever approved in this country.
  3. Trans-Pacific Partnership …. I was saying, how bad it is
  4. I’m cutting regulation. You have regulations on top of regulations, and new companies cannot form and old companies are going out of business.

Taxes

The moderator, Lester Holt, prior to his question indicated:

  • “Secretary Clinton, you’re calling for a tax increase on the wealthiest Americans.”
  • “Mr. Trump, you’re calling for tax cuts for the wealthy.”

The questions addressed in this segment:

  • The moderator asked each to defend their stances on taxes.
  • He asked Trump about not releasing his tax returns.
  • He asked Clinton about her emails.

Trump

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. getting rid of the carried interest provision
  2. I filed a 104-page essentially financial statement of sorts, the forms that they have
  3. RE Clinton’s answer about emails: That was more than a mistake. That was done purposely.
  4. you don’t learn that much from tax returns. That I can tell you. You learn a lot from financial disclosure

Other statements which may or may not be relevant but not to the question:

  1. I could give you a list of banks, I would — if that would help you, I would give you a list of banks. These are very fine institutions, very fine banks. I could do that very quickly.
  2. I am very under leveraged. I have a great company. I have a tremendous income. And the reason I say that is not in a braggadocios way. It’s because it’s about time that this country had somebody running it that has an idea about money.
  3. We’re a debtor nation. We’re a serious debtor nation. And we have a country that needs new roads, new tunnels, new bridges, new airports, new schools, new hospitals.
  4. In response to a question asked by Clinton:
    • But I take advantage of the laws of the nation because I’m running a company. My obligation right now is to do well for myself, my family, my employees, for my companies.
    • But we’re opening the Old Post Office. Under budget, ahead of schedule, saved tremendous money. I’m a year ahead of schedule. And that’s what this country should be doing.  … And we should be able to do that for our country.

Clinton

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. RE Trumps answer to tax returns: the financial disclosure statements, they don’t give you the tax rate. They don’t give you all the details that tax returns would.
  2. I made a mistake using a private e- mail. … if I had to do it over again, I would, obviously, do it differently

Other statements which may or may not be relevant but not to the question:

  1. helping people refinance their — their debt from college at a lower rate.

America’s Direction

Race

The moderator, Lester Holt, prior to his question indicated:

  • The share of Americans who say race relations are bad in this country is the highest it’s been in decades, much of it amplified by shootings of African-Americans by police
  • Race has been a big issue in this campaign, and one of you is going to have to bridge a very wide and bitter gap.

The questions addressed in this segment:

  • “how do you heal the divide?”
  • “Stop-and-frisk was ruled unconstitutional in New York, because it largely singled out black and Hispanic young men.”
  • “Do you believe that police are implicitly biased against black people?”
  • Question to Trump: In the last couple of weeks, you acknowledged what most Americans have accepted for years: The president was born in the United States. Can you tell us what took you so long?

Clinton

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. restore trust between communities and the police
  2. work to make sure that our police are using the best training, the best techniques, that they’re well prepared to use force only when necessary.
  3. Everyone should be respected by the law, and everyone should respect the law.
  4. called for criminal justice reform.
  5. bring communities together in order to begin working on that as a mutual goal.
  6. get guns out of the hands of people who should not have them.
  7. community policing
  8. address the systemic racism in our criminal justice system
  9. come forward with a plan that is going to divert people from the criminal justice system, deal with mandatory minimum sentences, which have put too many people away for too long for doing too little.
  10. have more second chance programs
  11. I’m glad that we’re ending private prisons in the federal system; I want to see them ended in the state system.
  12. commonsense gun safety measures
  13. we’ve got too many military- style weapons on the streets.
  14. comprehensive background checks
  15. pass a prohibition on anyone who’s on the terrorist watch list from being able to buy a gun in our country.
  16. I think implicit bias is a problem for everyone, not just police.
  17. we would put money into that budget to help us deal with implicit bias by retraining a lot of our police officers.
  18. we need to do a better job of working, again, with the communities, faith communities, business communities, as well as the police to try to deal with this problem.

Trump

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. we need law and order. If we don’t have it, we’re not going to have a country.
  2. we have to stop the violence.
  3. take the gun away from criminals that shouldn’t be having it.
  4. we have to know what we’re doing.
  5. need more police.
  6. need a better community, you know, relation. … I agree with Secretary Clinton on this.
  7. We need law and order in the inner cities, because the people that are most affected by what’s happening are African-American and Hispanic people.
  8. I agree with you. [Clinton] But I think we have to look very strongly at no-fly lists and watch lists. And when people are on there, even if they shouldn’t be on there, we’ll help them, we’ll help them legally, we’ll help them get off. But I tend to agree with that quite strongly.
  9. But stop-and- frisk had a tremendous impact on the safety of New York City. Tremendous beyond belief.
  10. RE Obama Birth Certificate: When I got involved, I didn’t fail. I got him to give the birth certificate. So I’m satisfied with it.
  11. I think that I’ve developed very, very good relationships over the last little while with the African-American community.

Securing America

21st Century War

The moderator, Lester Holt, prior to his question indicated:

  • Our institutions are under cyber attack, and our secrets are being stolen.
  • we think of ISIS certainly as over there, but there are American citizens who have been inspired to commit acts of terror on American soil

The questions addressed in this segment:

  • “who’s behind it? And how do we fight it?”
  • Tell us specifically how you would prevent homegrown attacks by American citizens,
  • On nuclear weapons, President Obama reportedly considered changing the nation’s longstanding policy on first use. Do you support the current policy?

Clinton

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. There are the independent hacking groups that do it mostly for commercial reasons to try to steal information that they can use to make money.
  2. we are seeing cyber attacks coming from states, organs of states.
  3. There’s no doubt now that Russia has used cyber attacks against all kinds of organizations in our country
  4. We need to make it very clear — whether it’s Russia, China, Iran or anybody else — the United States has much greater capacity. And we are not going to sit idly by and permit state actors to go after our information, our private-sector information or our public-sector information.
  5. And we’re going to have to make it clear that we don’t want to use the kinds of tools that we have. We don’t want to engage in a different kind of warfare. But we will defend the citizens of this country.
  6. I have put forth a plan to defeat ISIS. It does involve going after them online.
  7. intensify our air strikes against ISIS and eventually support our Arab and Kurdish partners to be able to actually take out ISIS in Raqqa, end their claim of being a Caliphate.
  8. I would also do everything possible to take out their leadership.
  9. I think we need to go after Baghdadi, as well, make that one of our organizing principles.
  10. we’ve got to have an intelligence surge  … vacuum up intelligence from Europe, from the Middle East.
  11. work more closely with our allies
  12. working with NATO …  to really turn our attention to terrorism.
  13. to really turn our attention to terrorism.
  14. NATO as a military alliance has something called Article 5, and basically it says this: An attack on one is an attack on all. And you know the only time it’s ever been invoked? After 9/11, when the 28 nations of NATO said that they would go to Afghanistan with us to fight terrorism, something that they still are doing by our side.

Other statements which may or may not be relevant but not to the question:

  1. I want to reassure our allies in Japan and South Korea and elsewhere that we have mutual defense treaties and we will honor them.
  2. I intend to be a leader of our country that people can count on, both here at home and around the world, to make decisions that will further peace and prosperity, but also stand up to bullies, whether they’re abroad or at home.

Trump

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. I agree to parts of what Secretary Clinton said
  2. it could be Russia, but it could also be China. It could also be lots of other people. It also could be somebody sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds
  3. We came in with the Internet, we came up with the Internet … when you look at what ISIS is doing with the Internet, they’re beating us at our own game. ISIS.
  4. get very, very tough on cyber and cyber warfare.
  5. We will take out ISIS
  6. The secretary said very strongly about working with — we’ve been working with them for many years, and we have the greatest mess anyone’s ever seen.
  7. the 28 countries of NATO, many of them aren’t paying their fair share.
  8. we’re defending them, and they should at least be paying us what they’re supposed to be paying by treaty and contract.
  9. NATO could be obsolete, because … they do not focus on terror
  10. But I’m all for NATO. But I said they have to focus on terror, also. … And they’re going to do that. And that was — believe me — I’m sure I’m not going to get credit for it — but that was largely because of what I was saying and my criticism of NATO.
  11. we have to get NATO to go into the Middle East with us, in addition to surrounding nations, and we have to knock the hell out of ISIS, and we have to do it fast,
  12. I agree with her on one thing. The single greatest problem the world has is nuclear armament, nuclear weapons, not global warming,
  13. I would like everybody to end it, just get rid of it. But I would certainly not do first strike.
  14. I think that once the nuclear alternative happens, it’s over. At the same time, we have to be prepared. I can’t take anything off the table.

Other statements which may or may not be relevant but not to the question:

  1. Because you look at some of these countries, you look at North Korea, we’re doing nothing there. China should solve that problem for us. China should go into North Korea. China is totally powerful as it relates to North Korea.
  2. worst deal I think I’ve ever seen negotiated that you started is the Iran deal.
  3. And as far as Japan is concerned, I want to help all of our allies, but we are losing billions and billions of dollars. We cannot be the policemen of the world. We cannot protect countries all over the world…

Not sure what these address?

Questions asked by Holt:

  1. Mr. Trump, this year Secretary Clinton became the first woman nominated for president by a major party. Earlier this month, you said she doesn’t have, quote, “a presidential look.” She’s standing here right now. What did you mean by that?
  2. One of you will not win this election. So my final question to you tonight, are you willing to accept the outcome as the will of the voters?

Trump

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. She doesn’t have the stamina
  2. You have to be able to negotiate our trade deals. You have to be able to negotiate, that’s right, with Japan, with Saudi Arabia. I mean, can you imagine, we’re defending Saudi Arabia? And with all of the money they have, we’re defending them, and they’re not paying? All you have to do is speak to them. Wait. You have so many different things you have to be able to do, and I don’t believe that Hillary has the stamina.
  3. Look, here’s the story. I want to make America great again. I’m going to be able to do it. I don’t believe Hillary will. The answer is, if she wins, I will absolutely support her.

Clinton

Statements directly answering the question:

  1. Well, as soon as he travels to 112 countries and negotiates a peace deal, a cease-fire, a release of dissidents, an opening of new opportunities in nations around the world, or even spends 11 hours testifying in front of a congressional committee, he can talk to me about stamina.
  2. Well, I support our democracy. And sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. But I certainly will support the outcome of this election.

There you have it in freeze frame fashion. Hope that helps clear out some of the smoke and mirrors.

 

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