Candy Crowley right to stick to her debate guns

Journalists are taught never to become part of the story. Candy Crowley of CNN, moderator of tonight’s town-hall debate, has become part of the story, but in her case, I don’t think she has been given any choice.

From Politico:

In an interview with CNN this afternoon, Candy Crowley reiterated that, like past town-hall debate moderators, she intends to do more than just hold the microphone at tonight’s debate in Hempstead, N.Y. — an intention that has caused concern for both campaigns….

Crowley’s vision of her role at tonight’s debate is in keeping with past town hall debates, but it would defy the expectations agreed to by both campaigns in the co-signed memorandum of understanding, obtained and released yesterday by Time’s Mark Halperin. From section 7, part (c), sub-part (iv):

7. Additional Rules Apllicable to the October 16 Debate…

(c) With respect to all questions…

(iv) The moderator will not ask follow-up questions or comment on either the questions asked by the audience or the answers of the candidates during the debate or otherwise intervene in the debate except to acknowledge the questioners from the audience or enforce the time limits, and invite candidate comments during the 2 minute response period.

There is hardly any gray area here. Crowley is expected to do nothing except to acknowledge questioners, enforce the time limits, and invite candidate comments. Many people — especially journalists — would and have objected to that, but that’s the agreement.

That’s the agreement between the two campaigns. The sponsoring Commission on Presidential Debates did not agree to it. Crowley did not agree to it. If the two campaigns want somebody to handle the job the way they seem to want it handled, they should hire a game-show host, not a journalist.

“The commission and the moderator are not parties to” any agreement the campaigns may have, Frank Fahrenkopf, former chairman of the Republican National Committee and a debate commission co-chair, told the Washington Post. “She agreed to abide by the rules of the commission, not the campaigns.”

Good for the commission, and good for Crowley.

We’ll be here again tonight, live-blogging the debatee. As usual, I’ll post a new thread around 8 p.m., then begin commentary as the debate starts at 9.

– Jay Bookman

470 comments Add your comment

martin the calvinist

October 16th, 2012
2:38 pm

Call It Like It Is

October 16th, 2012
2:38 pm

Hey, as long as she is tough to both sides, could care less. She just needs to remeber it’s not about her or her need to get in the spot light.

martin the calvinist

October 16th, 2012
2:39 pm

martin the calvinist

October 16th, 2012
2:39 pm

I agree with Call it…..

stands for decibels

October 16th, 2012
2:41 pm

If the two campaigns want somebody to handle the job the way they seem to want it handled, they should hire a game-show host, not a journalist.

Agreed and frankly, I’m shocked that they don’t just hire Alex Trebek to do the next one.

Stonethrower

October 16th, 2012
2:41 pm

Liberal Media!

Brosephus™

October 16th, 2012
2:42 pm

Seems as though the parties want to continue the status quo of staging nothing but infomercials for their talking points. Hopefully, the people asking questions will not be sheep and play along with the facade. I’m wondering when the commission will quit playing favorites and allow ALL presidential candidates a chance to debate. Georgia has 4 people on the ballot, yet there have only been two people that have debated thus far. When do we get to hear from the other two?

Finn McCool (The System isn't Broken; It's Fixed)

October 16th, 2012
2:43 pm

Will O phone it in again?

Finn McCool (The System isn't Broken; It's Fixed)

October 16th, 2012
2:44 pm

She should ask Romney why he is a lying sack o’ s.

Georgia

October 16th, 2012
2:45 pm

Alex Trebek would be a fine debate moderator, but then Obama would phrase all his answers in the form of a whine.

Call It Like It Is

October 16th, 2012
2:50 pm

I’m just glad to see that Pizza Hut backed off their idiotic attempt to hijack our presidential debate for marketing.

godless heathen

October 16th, 2012
2:50 pm

Hard to take anybody seriously that goes by Candy unless she’s a stripper.

Georgia

October 16th, 2012
2:52 pm

Someone should ask Obama if he still blames W. Someone should ask Romney if he still takes responsibility for his own choices.

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
2:53 pm

I’m just glad to see that Pizza Hut backed off their idiotic attempt to hijack our presidential debate for marketing.

If I’m in Obama’s shoes, I get that out of the way by saying “I’d like to first say this: Sausage. Governor?” and then get on with the real work.

Don't Tread

October 16th, 2012
2:53 pm

We’ll see if she actually sticks to that (or sticks to it for one side only).

CJ

October 16th, 2012
2:53 pm

If the two campaigns want somebody to handle the job the way they seem to want it handled, they should hire a game-show host, not a journalist.

I think it’s a stretch to call Candy Crowley a journalist, but I get your point.

http://mediamatters.org/tags/candy-crowley

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
2:53 pm

Will Hannity whine that Candy was drunk ?

Keep Up the Good Fight!

October 16th, 2012
2:54 pm

Hard to take anybody seriously that goes by Candy unless she’s a stripper

Because whenever you talk about women, they must be degraded to a sexual nature? So of you guys really need to get a clue in your war on women and your phobias about women being more intelligent than you.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

October 16th, 2012
2:55 pm

“If the two campaigns want somebody to handle the job the way they seem to want it handled, they should hire a game-show host, not a journalist.”

The Presidential debate hosted by…..Wink Martindale?

No so very appealing.

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
2:56 pm

Will Ann Coulter whine that Obama wasn’t being sexy enough?

DownInAlbany

October 16th, 2012
2:57 pm

heathen: you owe me one Dell keyboard. I just spit half-sweet tea, half-lemonade from Chic-fil-a all over it

Ben Shockley

October 16th, 2012
2:58 pm

“So of you guys really need to get a clue in your war on women and your phobias about women being more intelligent than you.”

Not intended to be a factual statement

Ben Shockley

October 16th, 2012
2:59 pm

If I make a joke about a guy named “Bubba” is that waging war on men?

Ben Shockley

October 16th, 2012
3:00 pm

“She should ask Romney why he is a lying sack o’ s.”

Not intended to be a factual statement

alittlecommonsense

October 16th, 2012
3:00 pm

I hope she does get involved. These town halls are usually a feel good “I can connect with the people” affair. I really could care less about that.

Just as long as she doesn’t take a que from Martha Raddatz who was an active debater on one side of the issues. That was an abomination in the VP debate. Just be fair with both sides – don’t become a debater yourself.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:00 pm

JAY,

Already both parties are blaming loss of debate to Crowley…”if we lose it’ because of Crowley….” heard that on America Left last evening as well as from the GOP already..

Making excuses before the outcome…really? I hope she does ask followup questions, namely…”you answered the question with the answer to a question you wanted to be asked..now the question was ???, please provide a short reponse in 15 seconds..”

I think we may as well have Jerry Springer moderate…this whole process is clearly Jerry Springeresque…

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
3:00 pm

If I make a joke about a guy named “Bubba” is that waging war on men?

Go ahead, let’s see you make a sexist joke about a respected journalist named “Bubba”. We’ll let you know.

Ben Shockley

October 16th, 2012
3:01 pm

How many times has Obama tried and failed to tell the truth about Libya? About deficit reduction? About Romney’s record at Bain?

Keep Up the Good Fight!

October 16th, 2012
3:01 pm

Ben, enjoy the ignorance…. when you become a “job creator”, enjoy the lawsuits. :D

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
3:02 pm

I think we may as well have Jerry Springer moderate…this whole process is clearly Jerry Springeresque…

Chair throwing should be part of it, yes.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:02 pm

Am I the only one that would pay extra to have the option of eliminating the bottom, side and other news tickers by all “news” and sports channels?

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

October 16th, 2012
3:02 pm

Ben Shockley

October 16th, 2012
2:58 pm
“So of you guys really need to get a clue in your war on women and your phobias about women being more intelligent than you.”

Not intended to be a factual statement

.
.
.
.
I KNOW that to be a factual statement.

Grow a pair (breasts, that is) and you’d understand.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:03 pm

BYTEME,

Who knows, we may learn something new about a baby’s daddy…

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
3:03 pm

Anyone else see the consistency in the wingnuts worrying about someone with a title derived from the word “moderate”?

Ben Shockley

October 16th, 2012
3:03 pm

“Go ahead, let’s see you make a sexist joke about a respected journalist named “Bubba”. We’ll let you know.”

Apparently the jury is still out regarding the existence of any respected journalists named “Candy.”

Thanks for regurgitating the mindless liberal talking points about waging war on women, though. We were at risk of forgetting about it. It only gets repeated like 5,000 times per day on this blog.

Ronald Reagan Parkway

October 16th, 2012
3:04 pm

It would be a great debate if President Obama and Mitt Romney were placed in separate sound proof booths and asked the same questions. Neither one would be able to hear each others’ answers. That would be a TRUE debate!!!

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
3:04 pm

I see Ben still can’t make up his own joke.

stands for decibels

October 16th, 2012
3:05 pm

Shouldn’t the third debate be a tag-team affair?

Lord Help Us

October 16th, 2012
3:05 pm

‘Chair throwing should be part of it, yes.’

If there is a chance Geraldo will hit smacked, I will watch.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:05 pm

Anybody other than me also in favor of eliminating the phrases “not intending to be a factual statement..” and ” enter comments here” among others?

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
3:05 pm

Shouldn’t the third debate be a tag-team affair?

Would having a cage around the stage debase this any further?

ByteMe - Got ilk?

October 16th, 2012
3:06 pm

Anybody other than me also in favor of eliminating the phrases “not intending to be a factual statement..”

Only when it’s used to innoculate your own lies. Like calling the other person a liar right before letting loose with a bunch of lies.

Brosephus™

October 16th, 2012
3:06 pm

Hard to take anybody seriously that goes by Candy unless she’s a stripper.

Name bias much??? :)

http://www.namepedia.org/en/firstname/Candy/

Kandi Burruss: Successful R&B Artist/Songwriter/Producer, business owner, TV personality

Khandi Alexander: Successful actress.

Not really a “Candy”, but plays the character on “Two and a Half Men. April Bowlby. (*tribute to Kamchak and his list of beauties)

moonbat betty

October 16th, 2012
3:06 pm

Hopefully, Candy doesn’t take a cue from Biden last week and go all Jack Nicholson on them:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n47U-v3v1-Q

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:07 pm

BYTEME,

They both will do anything to get elected…we will see more of that tonite…I knew Romney was a moderate from the beginning but he needed the money and votes…what else is new??

godless heathen

October 16th, 2012
3:07 pm

So of you guys really need to get a clue in your war on women and your phobias about women being more intelligent than you.

LOL! That’s a real dig, there. Like we associate “journalist” with high intelligence (other than present company, of course.)

Don Abernethy

October 16th, 2012
3:08 pm

Why did the Republicans allow all of the moderators to be liberal????

moonbat betty

October 16th, 2012
3:09 pm

Yeah, don’t make fun of “Candy”.

They could of had “Cokie” Roberts instead.

ragnar danneskjold

October 16th, 2012
3:10 pm

Game show host would be a good idea, especially for something like the town hall format.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:11 pm

BRO

Sammy Davis Jr…the Candy Man?
John Candy
Eye candy…

They BOTH suck

October 16th, 2012
3:11 pm

Don

Can you provide substantiated evidence that all of the moderators are liberal?

Thanks

OBIWAN

October 16th, 2012
3:11 pm

No teleprompter, Obama will lose.

Marty Huggins'

October 16th, 2012
3:11 pm

“In the locker room a husband asked Bubba, a young stud with an enormous member: ‘I don’t mean to be too personal, but how did you get that big?’ Bubba laughed and said, ‘Every night before bed, I bang it on the bedpost three times. Heck, it impresses the girls at school!” The husband was excited at the simplicity of this technique and could hardly wait to try it himself. Before he climbed into bed that night, he whipped it out and banged it on the bedpost three times. He was just climbing into bed with newfound confidence when his wife sits up, half-asleep and rubbing her eyes, and says, ‘Bubba, is that you?”"
http://www.psychologyhelp.com/sexual-health/sex-joke-1c.htm

Quick google search revealed no results for journalist names bubba.
So for this we will go with Masters Champion Bubba Watson.

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:11 pm

She should have never done interviews because everything is political now.

DownInAlbany

October 16th, 2012
3:12 pm

If Crowley comes across as being one-sided, I don’t think that will play real well with the undecideds/independents…which is the targeted group here. Let’s be honest the debates will not change anyone’s mind that frequents this blog.

ODD OWL

October 16th, 2012
3:12 pm

The terms Candy Crawley and stripper are oxymorons that are mutually exclusive… Imagine, Candy Crawley in a Thong ??? Perish the thought… I get the shivers just thinking about it…

stands for decibels

October 16th, 2012
3:13 pm

Game show host would be a good idea, especially for something like the town hall format.

good lord. Rags and I agree on something. Hide your children.

moonbat betty

October 16th, 2012
3:13 pm

“Game show host would be a good idea, especially for something like the town hall format.”

lol – Yeah they need Richard Dawson (RIP) from the old Family Feud. He could go around kissing everyone before the ask a question.

straitroad

October 16th, 2012
3:13 pm

None of this matters anyway. No matter how the debate goes, it will be spun as a massive blowout win for obama by the same folks who had to admit that he was routed in the previous debate. I have absolutely no doubt that this will be the case. Obama could drool all over himself and wear his socks on his ears and he will be deemed the winner.

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:15 pm

I don’t think mitt will use the same lies or positions as last debate.

He is a consistent flip flopper.

It is the only thing he is good at.

Jack

October 16th, 2012
3:16 pm

Crowley is from CNN. Obama will get a wink and a nod tonight, but it still won’t be enough. The real Obama will be there jut like he was in the first debate.

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

October 16th, 2012
3:17 pm

Anybody other than me also in favor of eliminating the phrases “not intending to be a factual statement..” and ” enter comments here” Jerry Springer references or mentioning Bob Woodward’s book?

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:18 pm

East Cobb RINO, Inc. (LLC)

October 16th, 2012
3:18 pm

And nobody wants to hear sausage or pepperoni. It is a trick question. The correct answer is both with some Canadian bacon, mushrooms, olives, onions, & extra cheese.

The real questions are:
Ginger or Mary Ann?
Veronica or Betty?
Jennifer or Angelina?

Jokes aside. This format should play better for Obama as the Mittster will have nowhere to hide and smuggle his cheat sheet.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:19 pm

KAMCHAK

I’m ok with no more Springer references but why not more Bob Woodward book references? Have you read it?

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

October 16th, 2012
3:20 pm

Mary Ann.
Veronica.
Jennifer.

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:23 pm

Yeah stevie,

speaker crybaby told the truth in that book.

Gullible much?

jasper

October 16th, 2012
3:24 pm

Dare everybody to do a shot tonight for every time you hear 47%. Should be better than Bob.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:24 pm

EAST COBB

Both
Neither
Angelina

Do you suppose Romney is boxer or briefs guy?

Regnad Kcin

October 16th, 2012
3:26 pm

Ben thinks johns are “job creators.”

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:27 pm

GETALIFE

Suggest you read the book and educate yourself..the book is for the most part, a sad critique on BO’s and GOP’s lack of leadership skills…the former more than the latter…as considered in light of the cliff negotiations…but you wouldn’t know that because you are so gullible you are incapable of arriving at any of your own conclusions…both sides use you weak talking points…c’mon…I know you can read..

Independent

October 16th, 2012
3:28 pm

I’ve personally known only one Candy in my life, a classmate at an unnamed high school in north DeKalb County in the mid-70’s. When she graduated from high school she didn’t become a stripper. In the early 80’s a friend ran into her at a hotel in the Dunwoody area, and low and behold, you guessed it, she was a hooker / escort. True story.

stands for decibels

October 16th, 2012
3:28 pm

Boris Badnoff

October 16th, 2012
3:28 pm

I greatly admire Candy. She definitely didn’t get where she got by sleeping with anyone. And because she is employed by CNN we know she has absolutely no bias. Heck, the only difference between her and Jay Bookman is 5 million chocolate eclairs.

Paul

October 16th, 2012
3:29 pm

Nothing like making a demand you can’t enforce. If the campaigns wanted to guarantee Ms Crowley would act like a journalist, they did the one thing that will guarantee she will: tell her she can’t be a professional.

I’ll toss out a prediction: the candidate who avoids specifics will, the next day, have his side complain about how unfair and one-sided Ms Crowley was. Now let’s see…. what candidate has made avoiding specifics into a new art form? Hmmmmmm…….

moonbat betty

October 16th, 2012
3:29 pm

Everyone must take a shot when getalife declares “lie”, “liar”, or “flip flopper”

Joe Hussein Mama

October 16th, 2012
3:29 pm

SfD — “Agreed and frankly, I’m shocked that they don’t just hire Alex Trebek to do the next one.”

No, sorry.

The GOPers don’t want Trebek saying that *or* saying I’m sorry, Governor, but the correct answer is “what are tax increases on high-net-worth individuals.” :D

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:30 pm

JASPER,

What about 12 million jobs…what about lies insinuating Romney shipped jobs overseas….what about 5 trillion or 4 trillion…what about debt levels…it’s all the same BS…likely repeated in all three debates…

Regnad Kcin

October 16th, 2012
3:30 pm

RINO,

You forgot Betty or Wilma! :D

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

October 16th, 2012
3:30 pm

Have you read it?

Have you read:

Us and Them: Understanding Your Tribal Mind by David Berreby?
The Myth of Political Correctness: The Conservative Attack on Higher Education by John K Wilson?
Patterns of the Hypnotic Techniques of Milton H. Erickson I and II by Richard Bandler and John Grinder?
Talking Right: How Conservatives Turned Liberalism into a Tax-Raising, Latte-Drinking, Sushi-Eating, Volvo-Driving, New York Times-Reading, Body-Piercing, Hollywood-Loving, Left-Wing Freak Show by Geoffrey Nunberg?

East Cobb RINO, Inc. (LLC)

October 16th, 2012
3:31 pm

I go with the boxer-briefs and sometimes neither, but that may be TMI. Maybe the next debate should be moderated by the little girl in the Ray Lewis press conference commercial. She knows how to ask the right questions.

ODD OWL

October 16th, 2012
3:33 pm

Candy Crawley and CNN are virulent Republican propaganists… CNN is the acronym for Collaborator Narrative News network…CNN have embraced the flip-flopping, right wing neo-con/ left wing Rockefeller liberal Romney/Rand/Ryan Republican narrative… CNN attempt to give validity and credence to the Romney/Ryan Republican distortions, rumors, Innuendos, halftrues and outright lies, by equating them with Democrat’s reality based truisms… The Romney/Ryan Republicans don’t have any ideas and no plan… Romney/Ryan are disingenuous and intellectually dishonest… They tell lies with reckless abandon… Wolf Blizer is the only fair and balanced news media person at CNN… Blizer should replace Candy Crawley as debate moderator…

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

October 16th, 2012
3:33 pm

STANDS,

What about “you didn’t build that”? Not sure that one is anymore damning than similar mis-speak on 47%…also highly unlikely either will lose votes as a result…

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

October 16th, 2012
3:33 pm

Seen this?

http://www.romneytaxplan.com/

Everything ya’ need to know.

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:33 pm

stevie,

I don’t believe a word the speaker or the gop say in any nook.

Like Biden said, they are full of bs. Period.

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:33 pm

Peadawg

October 16th, 2012
3:34 pm

“Hey, as long as she is tough to both sides, could care less. ”

^^This^^

Georgia

October 16th, 2012
3:35 pm

Question for Romney: Will we be better off four years from now if you get elected president? Question for Obama: Why couldn’t you adjust when the Republicans voted down your initiatives and refused to compromise? Why did you just accept defeat so easily. Why did you make it so easy for them.

Quagmire

October 16th, 2012
3:35 pm

Mitt Romney jumped all over Obama for 90 billion for green industry….
He did not even know some was for scrubbers for Coal Power Plants…

That 90 billion for green energy was spread out over many years,,,and
included money for upgrades to Coal Power Plants to install exhaust
cleaners….and clean up the coal exhaust…

Remember Mitt Romney likes Coal….and another thing..

We use 75% of our oil for transportation and we currently get..from a 42
gallon barrel of black oil..

16 gallons of gasoline 40% by volume..
8 gallons diesel fuel 20% by volume..
4 gallons jet fuel 10% by volume..

We have bio-engineered versions of green algae that produce 80% diesel
by volume…and we have similar versions for gasoline and jet fuel…

Exxon is investing in Algae oil…
Obama is pushing Algae development..we can grow our own oil…less risky

Regnad Kcin

October 16th, 2012
3:36 pm

“similar mis-speak on 47%”

With respect, Stevie – you saw the video. Do you think Romney “mis-spoke”? To me he seemed eloquent and heartfelt, and let no room for doubt about what he meant.

I’m very curious to hear YOUR interpretation of what he actually meant…

Manchurian-Kenyan President

October 16th, 2012
3:36 pm

On another topic…..regarding Libya:

“Plugs” Biden says it wasn’t his or Barry’s fault….it was “intelligence failure”

Shrillary says it was because of “the fog of war”

Wait a minute….is Bush still the president? Aren’t these supposed to be Republican excuses only??

LOL

Patrick

October 16th, 2012
3:37 pm

Candy C. is a pro.

She will do a great job!

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:38 pm

georgia,

Yeah, the gop won our first downgrade. Congrats.

East Cobb RINO, Inc. (LLC)

October 16th, 2012
3:38 pm

2 debates (1 POTUS & 1 VEEP) with pointed, direct, & clear questions for the Romney/Ryan ticket to spell out details of their tax plan and they provided nothing. Candy Crowley should get free pizza for life if she can get Mittster to detail the offsets to his 5T in cuts.

jconservative

October 16th, 2012
3:39 pm

It is time for the Republican Party to grow up and stop using as an excuse the “liberal media”.

The liberal media apparently stopped Eisenhower from winning the White House (twice). Same for Nixon (twice) , Reagan (twice), Bush and Bush (twice).

That adds up to Republicans 36 years in the W H and the Democrats 24 years.

Manchurian-Kenyan President

October 16th, 2012
3:39 pm

Yup Regnad….agree, Romney said what he meant…b/c it’s true. Most of the bedwetters on this blog are part of that 47%

Barry said what he thought was true too…..about the “bitter gunholders clinging to their bibles”

getalife

October 16th, 2012
3:41 pm

The 47% comment was the real mitt. He was relaxed talking to the wealthy. His people.

Manchurian-Kenyan President

October 16th, 2012
3:43 pm

” Heck, the only difference between her and Jay Bookman is 5 million chocolate eclairs.”

…..ROFLMFAO!!!!……

East Cobb RINO, Inc. (LLC)

October 16th, 2012
3:43 pm

The 47% comment was the real mitt

Indeed it was. He even got out of bed to a hastily arranged press conference to affirm it. To own it even.

DownInAlbany

October 16th, 2012
3:44 pm

Fox News is reporting that Candy Crowley’s desperate need to marginalize everyday American voters and steal the spotlight for herself during tonight’s debate has just been formalized. Altering the original agreement with the debate commission, and under intense media pressure, both Obama and Romney have agreed to answer any questions asked by Ms. Crowley and her over-sized ego.

Bottom line: When a moderator works this hard to become part of the story, something is terribly, terribly wrong.