The Republican Presidential Debate on Sunday as moderated by George Stephanopoulos was yet another attempt by the media to manipulate further the already-manipulated American public. It started off with outrageous introductions that revealed the implied framework of the debate. Each candidate was introduced with his Iowa poll numbers and in order of those numbers. What was the point of this? A debate should be an exchange of ideas weighted by the quality of those ideas. But no, Stephanopoulos knows better. He knows that people should not pay much attention to ideas that come from candidates who “cannot win.” But perhaps the reason some candidates cannot win is because the media doesn’t treat their ideas with respect. But no matter. Good ideas can affect the positions of candidates who “can win.” They can affect the nature of the debate. My sympathies are with Ron Paul, of course. Isn’t it intrinsically interesting that there are conservatives in this country who think that Bush’s Iraq War policy, War on Terror, and related civil liberties record are a disaster? People such as Paul Craig Roberts, Bruce Fein, Bob Barr and others who have made appearances on Antiwar.com. Ron Paul has a lot to say about this kind of “conservatism.” Shouldn’t debates be about learning something you don’t already know? Why was Paul given so little time and then rushed when he received a few seconds to talk? Stephanopoulos had an opportunity to do something useful on Sunday. Instead he just created a political circus.