No, I didn't watch the debate

But what's going on with this riduculously front loaded election cycle? It's tempting to think that this isn't a one off phenomena, but is part and parcel of a significant change in our political culture toward the so-called permanent campaign. On the other hand, at this particular moment in time the sitting president is so deeply unpopular and intransigent that it's impossible to have any kind of forward looking political discussion that doesn't start with the premise that any change that might happen won't happen until he leaves office. Which is sort of a recipe for obsessing about the 2008 election years in advance.

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