Monthly Archives: October 2008

3rd Presidential Debate

Overall, McCain didn’t get the “game changer” that he was looking for in this debate. He spent more time (again) attacking Obama than he did outlining his policies. He frequently was condescending to Obama when he responded to points he didn’t agree with, unlike Obama, who stayed on message and stayed polite the whole night. McCain also kept bringing up a supporter named “Joe The Plumber,” tonight’s euphemism for “ordinary people,” again trying to subtly portray Obama (and by extension, his supporters) as outside foreigners meddling in the affairs of Joe Six Pack, hockey moms etc. Obama skillfuly addressed Joe The Plumber (JTP) later in the debate and McCain had trouble incorporating it any more in his arguments. (There does happen to be a Joe The Plumber in Amarillo, TX – www.joetheplumber.com – maybe McCain was hoping he could unclog his campaign.) Here are some points that I noted as the debate progressed: Continue reading

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Jazz Programs & Competitions

I recently applied to a jazz program with a band and found out that we weren’t selected which was not entirely unexpected – I had spoken a few weeks ago to a colleague who had won entry into this program in the past and he thought someone was already hand picked for this year’s program and mentioned their name. Frustrating but not unexpected. This made me think of the lack of transparency in many jazz competitions and auditions and how who knows who can make the difference between getting opportunities and not. After a certain point, actual talent and creativity frequently seem like secondary factors. Here are some ideas for making competitions fairer: Continue reading

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