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On second thought

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With the presidential election now tied in many opinion polls, this is the time when Mitt Romney could really use the 1 percent.

In the third presidential debate, Barack Obama jumped on Mitt Romney for saying the Navy needs more ships. "[W]e also have fewer horses and bayonets," he said. He failed to mention that this comes despite federal bailouts to livery stables and bayonet manufacturers.

What about all those jobs being lost in bayonet factories? Those people have families, too.

The debate focused on foreign policy questions. There are no real differences between the parties on foreign policy. That's why Mitt Romney spent the evening saying he would do the same things Obama did, only better.

Word has it that a lot of undecided voters missed the debate because they couldn't decide whether to watch it or the baseball game.

Some undecideds seem to think voting is like paying income taxes. If they're not ready by Election Day, they intend to ask for an extension.

For the first time, scientists have been able to use computers to play sound recorded on a tinfoil plate in 1878 — the earliest known playback of a human voice. Oddly, the voice seems to be a politician urging more horses and bayonets for the military.

Records show the device that recorded the sound was sold by the Edison Co., for $95.50 in April of 1878. It never caught on — not because of the price, but because kids had a hard time cranking it while walking around all day with it in their backpacks.

Still, it was a huge breakthrough. Until then, the only way kids could ignore their parents was to sing to each other.

Seriously, it's a good thing the recording industry evolved slowly. If someone had used Thomas Edison's first recording device to capture "Gangnam Style," Edison might have given up and gone back to being a telegraph operator.

Time magazine came out with a list of the top Halloween costumes this year. Big Bird didn't make it, probably because most parents can't afford the costume without some government funding.

In Utah, paramedics are working hard to help congressional candidates in districts 1 to 3 keep breathing. Seems that Mia Love and Jim Matheson are using up all the oxygen.

Jay Evensen is the associate editor of the Deseret News editorial page. Follow him on Twitter @jayevensen.