One of Andrew Sullivan’s comments on the debate was this:
10.18 pm. At no point have we seen a grace note from McCain. When dealing with the negativism of the campaign, it would not have killed him to seem genuinely horrified at calls for violence rather than offended that anyone dare criticize him or some of his supporters. Or to wish Obama well. It’s this lack of generosity of spirit that he lacks and that people want in a president. Obama still manages to say when he agrees with or admires McCain. In this whole dynamic, Obama seems more secure, more self-controlled, more mature. He is the Alpha Male on this stage, and McCain the bristling teen – aged 72. No wonder women seem to be so disproportionately pro-Obama.
At first I liked this comment, because that is what I saw as well. McCain tried to paint himself as the victim of negative advertising. He kept talking about Joe Effing Plumber, until I felt compelled to remove those words from my debate drinking game. He mentioned the “pro-abortion movement” over and over, and worst of all, he had the nerve to mention Sarah Palin as a role model for women!
I will let my family and close friends tell anyone else who might read this what my comments on Palin as role model were. I’m sure they can imagine them closely enough.
Anyway. I initially liked Andrew Sullivan’s comment, and then I started thinking. Obama is the alpha-male, so that is why we like him… that sounds an awful lot as if I like Obama for the same reasons horny teenagers google for photoshopped fake Sarah Palin images. And then I went on thinking some more.
The Alpha Male is the pack leader. He is in charge and the rest of the pack follows him and obeys him because they know that he is the one best suited to lead. The Alpha Male keeps his position as leader by proving every day that he knows what he is doing, can make intelligent decisions that benefit the pack as a whole, and because he is the strongest male in the pack.
So going back to tonight’s debate… Obama was the Alpha Male after all. He was calm, collected, kept trying to steer the conversation back to important issues such as the economy, education, and health care. He was confident enough that he could admit that he agreed with McCain on certain things, and he remained calm whenever McCain went on the attack. He waited patiently, responded, and then moved on, and he showed strength by doing so. The strong can afford to be gracious. Only the weak need to be on the attack in order not to lose. The strong can sit back, watch, and simply deflect.
Tonight Obama won, and he earned the Alpha Male spot.