An incompetent Debate Commission and impotent moderators have rendered the format moot.
Your frustration is shared, Dan. Perhaps it’s a naive observation with no solution, but it seems to me that part of the reluctance to engage in real debate and to permit follow-ups and fact checking is the need to fit within a tight TV broadcast window. There’s no flexibility to allow the debate to take as long as it takes. Limits are obviously necessary, but prescribed inflexibility dictated by a TV schedule just gags any real debate.
Excellent suggestions, which I unfortunately realize will probably never come to pass. Perhaps we will begin at least a discussion. I guess Trump being Trump brought more attention to these debates, and their format and meaning.
Man, a lot of difficult problems without any obvious impactful solutions, especially given the current incumbent. I do really like your idea of fact-checking in real time via chyron though; it seems like this is indeed some low-hanging fruit that could be picked off even before the next debate (potentially) takes place. Trump's lies are so outrageous and easily debunked, a small army of informed fact-checkers could have "LIE: BIDEN DID NOT SHRED TRUMP BALLOTS TO USE AS SPAGHETTI TOPPING" plastered across the screen as fast as they can type.
Yes, a moderator should be in the business of moderating. Just like a president should be in the business of leadership. Well. Here we are. Dan, your suggestions all make a lot of sense. And... So let's get this thing done; I am waking at 3a every night now.
It would be interesting to find out how many candidates would participate in a debate if they knew they were being fact checked on ALL platforms in real time. The way many candidates blatantly lie without blinking an eye while wearing their oh so sincere smiles, they must bank on only a small percentage of viewers tuning into the fact check broadcasts. Or maybe they're just narcissistic sociopaths!