Even by the low standards of American politics, watching last night’s US presidential debate was thoroughly depressing.
There was nothing presidential about it; it was more like two dogs fighting in which both growl and bark and bite each other.
Donald Trump clearly barked more and perhaps also bit large chunks of Joe Biden’s ears, both of them.
“It was an awful debate,” the Washington Post wrote immediately after the debate.
Other media outlets were equally scathing, as the BBC reported quoting several British and European newspapers.
Here is a sample, as per the BBC.
The Times of London described it as “an ill-tempered and at times incomprehensible squabble between two angry septuagenarians who palpably loathe each other.”
The Guardian called the debate a “national humiliation”.
It went further saying that if Trump was re-elected in November, “this dark, horrifying, unwatchable fever dream will surely be the first line of America’s obituary.”
There were more insulting comments from French newspapers.
Libération described it as “Chaotic, childish, gruelling”, while Le Monde called it a “terrible storm”.
German newspapers were no less critical with Der Spiegelcalling it “A TV duel like a car accident”.
Süddeutsche Zeitung titled its piece, “Part fist-fight, part play”.
Italy’s La Repubblica wrote “Never had American politics sunk so low.” Its US correspondent wrote the debate was “Chaotic, rowdy, and based on mutual contempt”.
Il Corriere della Sera meanwhile said Trump’s refusal to condemn white supremacy was “a message for Black America”.
Trump came to the debate on the defensive and desperately tried to deflect criticism of his mishandling of the coronavirus. He also lied several times, nothing unusual for the man.
More than 210,000 Americans have died since the beginning of 2020 and another 7 million have been infected, the highest number by far of any country in the world.
Under Trump’s watch more Americans have died in nine months than died in all of America’s wars combined except the Second World War.
In the First World War, 53,402 soldiers were killed in battleover a four-year period. In Vietnam, total deaths were 58,200 while in Afghanistan, the US has lost some 2400 soldiers in 18 years!
When Biden said under Trump, more than 200,000 Americans have lost their lives due to the virus, Trump said many more would have died if Biden were in power.
Trump also again accused China of spreading the virus calling it the “China Virus”.
Trump’s aim was to goad Biden and take him away from his message. He kept interrupting Biden despite given time to present his own position, without interruptions from his opponent.
Biden was able to stick to his talking points for most of the 90 minutes but on a few occasions, he lost his cool, snapping: “Will you shut up, man.”
At another point, he said: “It’s hard to get any word in with this clown — excuse me, this person.”
At another, Biden said: “Keep yapping, man.”
It was a truly depressing spectacle.
Of the two, Trump was by far more obnoxious, something that comes naturally to him.
Pity the American people who were the big losers. But that is not surprising since the entire system is rigged.
In the US, people are selected to occupy the White House to serve their corporate masters, not ordinary Americans.
America is on its death-bed.