Overheard on CNN.com: 'Send in the clowns'
Republican presidential candidates at Wednesday night debate
September 8th, 2011
06:55 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: 'Send in the clowns'

Comment of the Day:

"Republicans dodging questions. Why is this news?"–Tredecim

Perry's night of "duck the question"

Debate expert Todd Graham honed in on what he saw as Texas Gov. Rick Perry's weaknesses during the Wednesday night GOP debates, among them: ignoring direct questions, refusing to address contradictions between his words and actions, and providing no evidence to back up his statement that climate change science was "not settled." Many CNN.com readers agreed.

barbie1311 said, "Music to my ears: the sound of Rick Perry calling Social Security a giant Ponzi scheme, and comparing climate change to eugenics; probably music to the ears of the desperate Obama camp watching in the White House, too. Go ahead, GOP, send in the clowns. By the time Rick Perry is finished sticking his cowboy boots in his mouth, Obama won't have anything to worry about."

Walker1971 asked, "Is this really the best the Republicans have to offer? Ugh, far-right crackpots who bring religion into politics. When will the right put up someone who is actually a viable candidate? Kiss off 2012."

But 14Ghost said, "Ducking questions? All those questions were presumed liberally biased answers. 'Given the FACT that global warming exists. ...' 'Given the FACT that all people should have health insurance. ...' NBC asked questions in a way that presumes the liberal point of view is right." Stejo said, "Science isn't liberal; it's science."

What about the other candidates? rsleonard9 said, "I thought Cain made the most sense and gave straight talk. Newt wasn't bad and Ron Paul is always enjoyable to listen too. I agree that Perry dodged to many questions."

EnergyBeing3 said, "I'm not Republican, but I have to admit, in the last few months, I've grown a lot of respect for Ron Paul. If I was on the fence for voting either side, I'd lean toward Ron Paul. He makes 'real sense' and isn't a religious nut-job."

PaulinAZ said, "Like it or not, a Republican is probably going to end up in the White House! Huntsman is the only one sane and rational enough to even be considered. We better get behind this guy, and see that he gets the nomination! Imagine the alternatives: Bachmann ... Perry ... OH GOD!"

Are jobs obsolete?

Perhaps the U.S. needs to turn its unemployment problem on its head, suggests author Douglas Rushkoff. Rather than asking how to employ all those made obsolete by technology, he writes, maybe we should ask how we can "organize a society around something other than employment." Many CNN.com readers found the article unusually provocative. nightowl1 said, "Really, CNN, one of your best stories to date."

And some were reminded of Star Trek. GROG said, "'Star Trek Next Generation,' referred to the idea that because robots and computers had made hard labor unnecessary, society had more time to work on such things as world peace, cures to diseases, space exploration and pursuit of the arts. So far, much of what Gene Roddenberry envisioned has come true. Mobile phones, microwaves, remote controls, and even slate computers were all on Star Trek before they became real, so perhaps his social ideas will come true as well."

Others said the writer failed to factor limited resources and the need for tangible goods into his plan. Yes1Fan said, "Everything mentioned in the article depends on an overabundance of non-polluting energy. If the energy supply fails, it won't be long until the near-stone-age returns (or at least the Amish age)."

DoNotWorry said, "Corporations are vying for ownership of the water supply, betting on it being the 'new' oil in price manipulation. They will try to hold us up with water one of these days."

ragun said, "One of the big things being overlooked in this article is land. Sure, we could give away houses for free with our uber house-building technologies, but the land it sits on is limited."

dinkster said, "Food, shelter, clothing, and health care all require a source: Someone to grow the food, someone to sew the clothes, doctors to administer the health care."

Many readers suggested that a solution to unemployment might be cutting hours for everyone. tmertz said, "A 36-hour work week and 2 weeks' mandatory vacation in conjunction with a major effort to overhaul and improve education (and re-education of the unemployable) would cut unemployment to less than 3 percent. Going to a 4-day (36 hour) work week would be a winner for many companies."

drake666 asked, "What if every job paid enough to live on and every family only had (and needed) one earner? Result: a) enough jobs for everyone b) children always have an adult at home."

n8rlvr said, "This would result in more free time, potential increase in creativity and problem solving. Star Trek utopia here we come!"

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

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soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. justathought

    I guess I scream OUT SORCEING because I was a victum!! How many of you have been a victum of OUT SORCEING? If you had been a victum you might just sceam too!

    September 9, 2011 at 2:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Sally Spellmeister

      I take it you weren't an editor, proofreader, teacher or other worker whose job required spelling skills.

      September 9, 2011 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe poca

      If you are going to SCREAM something with your type... at the least make it a literate statement. Dumb is as dumb types. God bless america for it's a tardnation!!!

      September 16, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Viking

      I agree with 'joe poca' that 'justathought' should learn how to spell (or maybe even THINK) before screaming.
      Must I really point out to 'joe poca' that America is spelled with a capital 'a' (you DO know where the shift key is, don't you)???

      September 20, 2011 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |

    shttt or get offf the pot

    September 9, 2011 at 3:06 am | Report abuse |


    September 9, 2011 at 3:08 am | Report abuse |


    September 9, 2011 at 3:09 am | Report abuse |
  5. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ justathought:
    They don't "JUST BRING THE JOBS BACK HOME" because most citizens of the USA have priced themselves out of the world labor market, and complex dynamics of inflation, from housing and food to program-subsidized health care and a program-subsidized, uneducated leisure class, have made our economy unworkable.

    September 9, 2011 at 4:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Viking

      The 'uneducated leisure class' has enough education to milk the stock market and banking/insurance industries in order to HAVE leisure....the rest of the former middle class and the working class (you know you're in trouble when an electrician earns more than a university professor!) had been destroyed....and relies on govt. programs to SURVIVE.

      September 20, 2011 at 6:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Southerner01


      You do grasp that electricians make a good salary because the work they do is difficult, can be dangerous and not many people have both the skill and desire to do it?

      Besides, not all college professors make bad salaries. The average starting salary for a finance professor is over $100,000 a year (to work 10 months). If someone gets a Ph.D. in a field that only pays $35k a year, maybe they aren't as bright as they think they are.

      September 29, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. JoAnn Bartholomew

    CNN,is nothing but clowns,themselves.Since,they seem,to give the public only,one liners on thier blogs at times.Please,get your act,together and give the public more information. JoAnn Bartholomew

    September 9, 2011 at 6:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. Grider

    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing– see above,, do nothing candidate/ they can't even answer the questions/

    September 9, 2011 at 7:24 am | Report abuse |
  8. John

    Ron Paul is the only or one of the only candidates not teeming with lies and evil. You can see truth and passion in his eyes. Learn to role out the fake candidates and your left with 1 or 2.

    September 9, 2011 at 8:18 am | Report abuse |
  9. slider

    September 9, 2011 7:33 a.m. Central Time. CNN stated that under what the President said last night in his Jobs Speech that the best estimate is that the plan will cost $225,000,00 per job. The story will rotate on CNN again so watch it and weep.

    September 9, 2011 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
  10. The Truth Hurts

    Obama = Fool, retard.

    September 9, 2011 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Thank you for your wise contribution. I'm sure if there were more folks like you posting such brilliant insight into this topic, this country's problems would be solved quickly... that is if extinction is a viable solution considering your similarities with a dodo bird.

      September 9, 2011 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Adages

      What's that old saying..."takes one to know one"? Hee hee.

      People keep blaming Obama for the country's woes. He's just one man. Sure, Obama is the president. But what can he do? Sign legislation into law. But, um, where does that legislation come from? Congress? Well, isn't that amazing! And exactly what is Congress doing about job creation? Nothing? Oh my gosh, you're so smart!

      Start placing the blame where it belongs. The opposite of PRO is CON, and the opposite of PROgress is CONgress.

      September 9, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • RON

      You must be in the TEA Party!

      September 9, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Chewbacca

    Say NO to Rick Perry –

    We don't need another Texas Village Idiot in the White House. We're still cleaning up after the last one.

    September 9, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Viking

      Amen (that is pronounced 'aah – MEN', not 'AAAYYY – MEN').

      September 20, 2011 at 6:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Southerner01

      Anything would be better than the Chicago thug we have in the White House now. Also, he's doing anything BUT cleaning up. His actions are analogous to inheriting a car that needs a tune up and crashing it into a brick wall on the hopes that doing so would somhow make it run better.

      September 29, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Southerner01

    The problem with proposals to restrict the number of hours in a narmal working week is that it would not have the desired affect. The most talented would still be in greater demand and those who are talented and also driven to succeed would happily do two 36 hour a week jobs, plus a little freelance on the side.

    Additionally, if every job paid workers "enough to get by on" (I would argue they already do, but that depends on your definition of getting by) the increased labor costs would drive up the price of goods and services and deflate the real buying power of that increased salary right back to where it is now.

    September 29, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
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