A few quick impressions of the first Presidential debate:
The first part dealing with the economy and the bailout plan was neutral, a bit wishy-washy. Neither McCain or Obama impressed me with their comments. Frankly, I didn't expect either one of them to do so. There was a lot of He said - He said, but little more. They did have a few points where they agreed with each other, particularly when it came to spending, but their financial philosophies are so different I'm not sure they were really speaking the same language.
When it came to foreign policy questions, I thought McCain brought up some valid points Obama just didn't seem to get. Obama had his moments, too. Over all I believe Obama was weakest in this portion of the debate, but not as weak as I thought he would be. But his inexperience in foreign policy shows, acting as if talking with foreign leaders of countries hostile to the United States is little different from talking with a city councilman or mayor on the behalf of some of his constituents. He's forgotten half the lesson of Teddy Roosevelt – Talk softly and carry a big stick. Obama can talk softly but it sounds like he's not willing or able to carry the big stick. That's not a good for a possible President of the United States.
Hopefully the next one will be better.
UPDATE 9/27/08: I just watched the debate again (I love my DVR!) and I have to say even though the two were about even with each other through the first hour, it appears to me McCain was starting to get under Obama's skin during the last half-hour. Could this be McCain getting inside Obama's OODA loop?