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October 7, 2008

The Ring


No, this shot does not reflect the physical layout of tonight’s debate in Tennessee.  What it does show is one of McCain’s innumerable townhall-style meetings,  this one in Racine, Wisconsin back on July 31st.

How often has it crossed you mind, though, that the format McCain uses looks like an old-style boxing ring? With many in the punditocracy likening tonight’s debate to a boxing match, using like metaphors, such as how McCain needs to “deliver a knock out punch,”  I’m amused how it’s McCain’s bellicose and flailing nature that has him on the ropes in the first place.

So, what’s it going to be?


  Mad? Sad? Glad? Or, had?

(image: Mary Altaffer/AP. Racine Civic Center July 31, 2008.  image 2 & 4: Gerald Herbert/AP. Pueblo, Colo. Friday, Oct. 3, 2008. image 3 & 5: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty.  >October 2, 2008 Denver, CO)

  • chimproller

    Do Americans really want more belligerence?
    During the VP debate, I kept waiting for Biden to say Americans don’t want another oilman in the HW.

  • ratfood

    Whenever I see video of a McCain townhall, people in the audience look like they’re struggling to stay awake. Evidently, “maverick” is not synonymous with “interesting.”

  • Marie

    It does look like a boxing ring. To me, it remind of me of his newly-expressed desire to throw punches and/or mud-wrestle.

  • Megan

    I used to fight in rings, so to me it looks horribly wrong. The black feels ominous, but there’s no ref! Someone could get hurt. Worse, the spectators are so close! There’s nothing between them and the danger. There’s no one managing that system, no ref, no design, no thought for safety. If the fighters don’t have tremendous control, someone could get hurt.

  • bystander

    Sorry. O/T. But the metaphor of punches pormpted it.
    One definition of a knock out punch.

  • Titor

    Its time to FIGHT! Strike back against these media weapons of mass distortion!

  • MonsieurGonzo

    What a fascinating image, Michael. Beyond the obvious “fight ring” analogy my mind went to “McCain -vs- McCain” and i wanted to mine that rich, rhetorical vein ~ but then i realized well, that’s been pretty much chewed over ad nauseum ~ and the real struggle of any persuader is the illusion that there is a distinction between US and HIM, to begin with. Then, as you so often do, i forcefully collapsed the post-Renaissance mind’s eye presumption of perspective, including, in the case of newspapers or magazines their headlines & text, everything in the image FRAME to a 2-Dimensional plane = fundamental geometry, i realized (not unlike the fighter, Megan) that something was horribly wrong, and for me it all boiled down to the paradox that this “Ring” point of view revealed a square peg HIM struggling in vain to fit in that round hole being, US :)

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