Debate afterthoughts

1. Palin is benefiting from the soft bigotry of low expectations. Against any normal standard, she was astoundingly shallow, unresponsive, and at times incoherent. In the CNN poll, 84% thought she did better than they expected, and yet only 31% thought she’d won.

2. In the very tough competition for the coveted title of “Sarah Palin’s Greatest Lie of the Evening,” I’d have to give the prize to her account of the bailout bill: McCain suspended his campaign (false) tried to rise above partisanship (false) and brought people together (false) to make a deal (false).

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com