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Last Week’s Speaker

October 26, 2007

Live Blogging of Rick Tyler

Friday, I had an opportunity to be part of a presentation/discussion from Newt Gingrich’s press secretary Rick Tyler. So to fully understand the complexity, I attempted to use a diary type chronically of his time, kind of like what ESPN writer Bill Simmons does for sports games. So without further ado, here is a live diary with some interpretation of the speech:

11:21- introduction of speaker by Professor Dana Walker of American University. Rick Tyler has had success in getting people elected into political positions and host a radio show.

11:24- commences his speech by stating his shock that a press secretary for Newt Gingrich to come onto a college campus.

11:24- posed a question about how we, as college students, obtained their information concerning political information. Tyler stated that in his time he had few sources of news.

11:25-press secretary draws two circles comparing his live and a typical voter’s life. He shaded in most of his circle with the idea that politics takes up most of his life. He then made a tick like dot in the voter’s circle to make the point that they don’t pay much attention to politics.

11:28- Tyler stated that people are weird for watching shows like meet the press and listening to talk radio. Normal people do many other things before watching/listening these things.

11:29-Tyler starts a discussion about the first political debate between Kennedy and Nixon. People thought Kennedy won the debate on television and those who listen to the debate thought Nixon won.

11:31-Tyler posses the question of what is wrong with political debate. One person brought up the idea that candidates are too rigid and lifeless. Another point is that the candidates sound too rehearsed in a debate.

11:32-bring the mood down by talking about how we have many enemies who want to kill us and disrupt our lives. Tyler randomly brings up controlling our borders as a threat to our nation security. Tyler also discusses how we will have to come into struggle with China and India because they have 2 billion more people to work with. Tyler believes that if the US fixes a lot the “-tions”.

11:37- Tyler then asked the audience if they knew anything about social security and how we won’t get any.

11:38-Tyler brings up the point that baby boomers are the most spoiled generation in the history of the United States. He brings up the point that everything eventually goes down in price, except education and health care.

11:40-Tyler discusses the debate system as 9 people from each party lined up like seals waiting for fish from the moderator. He brought up the point that with primary debates, each party looks absolutely crazy from each perspective. Tyler feels a possible solution for this is the Cooper-Union Debate which is to get 2-4 representatives have a 90 min discussion and just talk and have a discussion.

11:44- Tyler brings up the point that the media gets the most talk time and they set the agenda. He implies that media chooses things that sell, but are not what people really wanted to hear about.

11:46-Tyler brings up Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck to describe how certain people will vote a certain part no matter what the situation.

11:48- Tyler brings up the person of the Bundler who can get lots of campaign money to run the campaign which basically wins elections.

11:49- Tyler brings up a point that the most valuable thing people have are thinking and planning time skills. He believes that people are lost and useless without these.

11:51- Tyler brings up the point that the media covers what they want to cover. Tyler also brings up that on 9/11, the media was covering Chandra Levy before 9/11 and how today, the media covered Paris Hilton and Brittney Spears ad nauseam rather then covering stories that are important.

11:55- A question was raised concerning campaign financing and how to fix it and really criticized a potential idea of giving free airtime. He brings up the point that candidates have the least say in their ability to finance campaigns.

11:59- Tyler proposed the idea that we should be more honest in where they get their money from. If a union or a company raises millions of dollars, then that information should be available on the internet for everyone to see it.

12:01- Tyler stated that two people responded to their invitation, Huckabee and Gravelli.

12:02- Tyler states that consultants do not know much about technology and history. How do you explain to people technology that will be outdated and how times will change.

12:05- Tyler brought up how an actual credit/debit transaction works. He uses this point to explain why we are frustrated with the response to Katrina and the length it takes to cash a Medicare check.

12:10- Tyler brings up the point that the private sector is so far ahead of the government sector, it is ridiculous. He brought up the point that voters do not care about the process, just the results. We recently have gotten to the point where we are fed-up with the dissidence between the government and people.

12:13- Tyler brought up the point that if people can communicate well, they will listen for 90 minutes but it will have to be interesting and captivating.

12:14- Tyler brings up the point that there are 39 or 32 pages of debate rules and some of the rules are ridiculous.

12:15- 9 90’s and 9- the idea of having 9 substantive 90 minute debates in the 9 weeks before the election.

12:18- Tyler would never want to see the censoring of speech and when people can campaign. He also liked the idea of using YouTube for debates, but not trivializing it.

12:20- Tyler was asked the question about if opening campaign contributions up the media would not be over played the way it is by having transparency.

12:22- Tyler feels that the media and campaign money determined the downfall of debates i.e. Clinton’s health care proposal. The media covered how it affects Obama rather then what is in the proposal.

12:24- Tyler believes that the candidates actually needs to state what they really are about by using their websites as a main hub for people to discuss. He would then want a compilation and have a blind issue poll and then candidates can then be affected for having a lack of substance on the websites. He believes that it is an idealistic concept, but he is

12:27- Tyler had to defend Newt in not running into the race. Ted Kennedy was asked why he wanted to be president and Kennedy had not real reason to be president. He also brought up how Giuliani talked about money raising when the host said hello and welcome and how were things going.

12:31- Tyler brings up to the point that people customizing how and where they are consuming their news. So two people in the same house can consume two completely different styles of news

12:33- “Slogans are fine if they have substance in them.”

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