Heads or Tails?

Dear Viewers,

Last night we had representatives from both the Bush (search) campaign and the Kerry (search) campaign to answer questions about the debate tonight.

We did not want our segment with them to be a food fight in which it is essentially the two sides saying, "no he didn't, yes he did, no he didn’t, etc." Frankly, it is not the two campaigns that provoke these food fights - it seems to be the way we, the media, set them up against each other.

It is hard to discuss a topic if you go back and forth and there are no follow up questions because you are two busy going back and forth. We wanted to elicit real information for you from both - rather than provoke a debate - so we decided to do the interviews one by one.

As you might imagine, it is always better to go second so that you can respond to what was said by your opponent. So our problem became, they can't both be second ... so how do we decide who has to go first? How do we be fair?

At one point I wondered if we should just go back to putting them on together and risking a segment of just finger pointing and "yes he did, no he didn't." We finally came up with an idea as to how to fairly decide who goes first: let's do as the two candidates have done for the debate tonight.

The two candidates needed to decide who would go first etc. and flipped a coin for tonight's debate. So, we did the same. We flipped a coin and thus the Kerry rep went first, and the Bush rep went second. If it worked for the presidential debates, it would work for us.

Last night I was sitting in my office listening to Brit Hume's 6 p.m  news when he reported an item that caught my attention. I thought, what??? Did I hear right??? So I pulled the transcript to see if my hearing was correct.

What Brit just goes to show you is that some disputes are resolved by duel, some by presidential debates (ours) and then there is this: (partial transcript from Brit Hume's show last night)

"The government of Singapore is blasting Taiwanese Foreign Minister Chen Tan-Sun for using what it calls — quote — "intemperate language" that suggests Taiwan is — quote — "pursuing a dangerous course" to cut ties with China. So what exactly did the Taiwanese Foreign Minister say?
Well, during a meeting at the foreign ministry, he called Singapore — quote — "a country the size of a booger."

Finally, by the time you read this, I should be on my way to Miami (search). Our show will be live from "spin alley" — the area next to where the debate will be held. It is sarcastically called that by all since it is where the two parties send representatives to "spin" their view of the night.

Frankly, I think the term a bit insulting since I do believe both parties are made up of good people - but with different ideas about how to solve our problems. But, since everyone calls it "spin alley," I have now thrown in the towel and call it that as well.

By the way, please drink lots of coffee ... our show is on at midnight (9 p.m. is the debate, 11 p.m. Hannity and Colmes and then we are on at midnight.)

And because many of you like viewer e-mail, I thought this might amuse you (or maybe you even agree with it):

E-mail No. 1



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