I’m a print and listening, as opposed to a “learning by seeing” sort of person. This is a mild disadvantage in my line of work; as a tv news director, there’s sometimes a stranger in a strange land quality about my days.
My strong personal preference is to hear things, which is why I put up with a problematic Squeezebox connection in my office and wish I could get an antenna on the roof so that I could get better radio reception.
Still, during yesterday afternoon’s pitch for attacking the Assad regime from Secretary of State Kerry and his back-up crew I kept my radio off and tv on. I wanted to see how Kerry said what he had to say. And sure enough, the key exchange between Kerry and Senator Rand Paul was as much visual as it was in words. Paul got slightly the worst of it; he looked a little nervous when he wasn’t speaking. Kerry looked resolute all the way through. Whether either is true is anyone’s guess. Listening would have given me fewer impressions and left me with a more neutral take on the afternoon’s proceedings, which might be closer to the truth, but would do less to satisfy my need to do what President Obama is asking Congress, and by extension the rest of us, to do: decide.
(Actually, I think the rest of us have spoken. CBS reported on a poll this morning showing only 29 percent of the public favors moving against Syria, even though the administration promises no boots on the ground. )