Archive for the 'The senility of John McCain' Category

Another bucket of fail for McCain.

Nov 01, 2008 in Barack Obama, Politics, The senility of John McCain

The latest OHSOSCARY thing about Obama is that he is friends with Anti-Semitic Muslim Rashid Khalidi. Except for the anti-Semitic part. Turns out that he’s got a pretty good reputation among Jewish folks, and that his positions are moderate. Oh, and McCain funded Khalidi’s work.

A reader of Andrew Sullivan expresses what seems to be the majority Jewish opinion on Khalidi:

I am an observant American Jew, my grandparents were survivors of Auschwitz and Bergen Belsen, and I am a proud Zionist, although one who identifies more with the J-Street Project than AIPAC. I am also a supporter of Barack Obama. I have been following the “controversy” over Rashid Khalidi and just read the article in The Nation to which you linked. I know nothing else about Khalidi, other than some biographical information I picked up on Wikipedia and news reports. I have to say, based on the article, he seems to have a very reasonable, thoughtful approach to the “situation” in Israel and Palestine.

There are obviously lots of emotions on both the Israeli/Jewish and Palestinian sides, but it is the extremists on both sides of the fence that keep the pot simmering at all times. When I think about the issue from the Palestinian perspective (something I wish more of my fellow supporters of Israel would do from time to time) I find it impossible to come up with a more reasonable take on the situation than the one presented by Khalidi.

To love and support Israel, and to view it as the ultimate protection for Jews from another Holocaust, does not require one to completely disregard the suffering of the Palestinian people, most of whom committed no sin other than to be born in a land claimed by another. I can’t imagine what it must feel like to one day wake up and be told your land is no longer yours and you have to leave. My own people have been in that situation before, and it turns my stomach that the experience of my family is used to justify keeping another people down. As Khalidi rightly points out, sympathizing with the Palestinian situation does not mean excusing them for their own impotence in bringing about the changes necessary to end that situation. There’s enough blame to go around, but the world would be a much better place if everyone could at least see things from the viewpoint of the “other side.”

They have nothing. McCain’s ultimate problem is that the core of every argument he has made has been completely false. Obama isn’t a socialist anymore than any other Democratic politician (or Bush), but Sarah Palin is the biggest socialist of all, skimming oil company profits to hand every Alaskan man, woman and child a check. Joe the Plumber isn’t going to be affected by Obama’s tax increase, and likely never will be. McCain’s economic plans will give us twice the debt as Obama. McCain used to oppose Bush’s tax cuts. Sarah Palin is dramatically unqualified for the job. She doesn’t know more about energy than anybody in America, or more about special needs children than anybody, in fact she doesn’t know more about anything than anybody in America. She didn’t oppose the Bridge to Nowhere. McCain’s earmarks crusade amounts to a teaspoon in a tidal wave. McCain is too hotheaded and Manichean to approach foreign policy more wisely than Obama. McCain sings about bombing Iran while his running mate agrees with Obama about striking Al Queda wherever they are. William Ayers was some damn education professor when Obama joined with him and a bunch of Republicans to hand out money to schools. McCain loves being a celebrity hobknobbing with Hollywood more than Obama. And now Rashid Khalidi is a moderate Palestinian respected by nearly everybody who knows him, Jewish or not, who McCain has funded to the tune of $400K+.

Obama simply stays cool and pushes forward while his opponents go mad and self-destruct. Every day John McCain degrades himself with some new despicably false attack on Obama, the better I feel about Obama leading the country.

-jb

Joe the Plumber makes $40K/yr., his business $100K/yr.

Oct 17, 2008 in Barack Obama, Politics, The senility of John McCain

Like Atrios, I don’t think “Joe the Plumber” needs to have his life investigated. I don’t care about his name, or his license…the relevant information is his income and how he’d fare under Obama’s tax rates. The answer? Says “Joe”:

“I would, if you believe him, I would be receiving his tax cuts,” Wurzelbacher said.

Now Joe is a registered Republican and McCain supporter, so I expect the reluctant response, but this renders everything McCain said about “Joe the Plumber” to be complete horseshit.

This is not a surprise.

-jb

Hot topic!

Oct 16, 2008 in Barack Obama, Politics, The senility of John McCain

To me, the big question is, after three debates in a row going to Barack Obama, do the rightwingers have the energy to try a “debates don’t matter” meme? They’ve certainly got the manic energy…just listen to one of them speak for longer than ten seconds, and they can cram “Ayers,” “Wright,” “Marxist,” “ACORN,” and “Rezko” into one sentence. And every sentence after that. It’s very impressive…in no way whatsoever.

Here’s a friendly bit of advice to all the diehard rightwingers waiting for the negative attacks to work (of course, some think they are working…this has a lot to do with their ability to see Obama leading by 8-10 points in every poll and conclude that he only has a 4 point lead): Every time you try the Ayers or Wright thing again, normal people simply hear, “We are the Whigs and our greatest days are ahead of us!”

-jb

I AM JOHN MCCAIN YOU PEASANT!!!

Oct 09, 2008 in Politics, The senility of John McCain

Politicians who yell at people, “Do you know who I am?” make us wish we didn’t.

McCain’s game is craps. So is Jeff Dearth’s. Jeff was at the table when McCain showed up and happily made room for him. Apparently there is some kind of rule or tradition in craps that everyone’s hands are supposed to be above the table when the dice are about to be thrown. McCain—“very likely distracted by one of the many people who approached him that evening,” Jeff says charitably—apparently was violating this rule. A small middle-aged woman at the table, apparently a “regular,” reached out and pulled McCain’s arm away. I’ll let Jeff take over the story:

“McCain immediately turned to the woman and said between clenched teeth: ‘DON’T TOUCH ME.’ The woman started to explain…McCain interrupted her: ‘DON’T TOUCH ME,’ he repeated viciously. The woman again tried to explain. ‘DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM? DO YOU KNOW WHO YOU’RE TALKING TO?’ McCain continued, his voice rising and his hands now raised in the ‘bring it on’ position. He was red-faced. By this time all the action at the table had stopped. I was completely shocked. McCain had totally lost it, and in the space of about ten seconds. ‘Sir, you must be courteous to the other players at the table,’ the pit boss said to McCain. “DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM? ASK ANYBODY AROUND HERE WHO I AM.”

This being Puerto Rico, the pit boss might not have known McCain. But the senator continued in full fury—“DO YOU KNOW WHO YOU’RE TALKING TO? DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM?”—and crisis was avoided only when Jeff offered to change places and stand between McCain and the woman who had touched his arm.

For the woman’s sake, I’m glad somebody stopped McCain before he pushed her.

We’ll do just fine without this guy in the White House.

-jb

No pity belongs in the hearts of men or women for Sarah Palin.

Sep 30, 2008 in Sarah Palin, The senility of John McCain

Rebecca Traister laments the tokenism and sexism surrounding the nomination of utterly unqualified Sarah Palin to the presidential ticket, most notably the idea that we should pity her:

I don’t want to be played by the girl-strings anymore. Shaking our heads and wringing our hands in sympathy with Sarah Palin is a disservice to every woman who has ever been unfairly dismissed based on her gender, because this is an utterly fair dismissal, based on an utter lack of ability and readiness. It’s a disservice to minority populations of every stripe whose place in the political spectrum has been unfairly spotlighted as mere tokenism; it is a disservice to women throughout this country who have gone from watching a woman who — love her or hate her — was able to show us what female leadership could look like to squirming in front of their televisions as they watch the woman sent to replace her struggle to string a complete sentence together.

Sarah Palin is a fool and habitual liar who didn’t have enough self-awareness to turn down a job she knew she wasn’t prepared for. She is one of those people, just like somebody you know, personally, oblivious to their own ignorance. Now that she has been confronted with it in such stark proportions that it is unavoidable, she doesn’t have the character to step down. And McCain’s bright idea is to chaperone her through her next Couric interview, and repeat, “gotcha journalism!”

What they leave out is that sometimes, they do “gotcha,” right in the cross-hairs. McCain-Palin is covered in blue gooey ink, swearing to God they didn’t rob that bank.

And what the media is leaving out is McCain’s judgment in choosing her. I will concede, however, that his incredibly bankrupt judgment on the economy is worth pushing it aside for the moment.

-jb

Alaska on Palin

Aug 31, 2008 in Sarah Palin, The senility of John McCain

Here’s a good Alaskan blog reacting to Sarah Palin. Just about as dumbfounded as everybody actually from Alaska, except Ted Stevens. But she’s extreme on criminalizing abortion, doesn’t know anything about the world, and is neck-deep under investigation, so she’s A-OK with Republicans! But the Alaskan perspective is valuable:

Does she want to open ANWR? Yes. Every politician in Alaska wants to open ANWR. It’s basically a requirement if you ever hope to get elected for anything. Even Mark Begich, the progressive Democrat running against the indicted Senator and Alaskan institution Ted Stevens, is pro-drilling. That’s the sea we swim in up here. There are a few anti-drilling folks, but you have to look hard to find them, and work hard to have them admit it.

Also:

The progressive station has a mixture of callers who are amused, horrified, and bewildered. The conservative station has a mixture of callers who are amused, enthusiastic, horrified and bewildered. No one is really sure how this happened, or what to make of it. Citing the fact that she was the mayor of Wasilla 2 years ago in her list of “executive experience” doesn’t even pass the giggle test in Alaska. Palin does have many supporters here in the state, but even many of them are doubting whether she can cut it in the Veep slot. A few callers have said they feel sorry for her, because they like her but she’s obviously being “used” and is way over her head. Local politicians are fiercely divided. Those who like her are generally appointees who are locally referred to as “Palin-bots” and have drawn comparisons to George Bush’s idealogical croneys. Many, Democrats and Republicans, are fierce opponents.

I just don’t think reasonable people can honestly convince themselves Palin is more experienced than Obama, or that her experience is enough with only 2 months to look at her. And it’s simply undeniable that she’s an absolute beginner on foreign policy. The people who know her best, Alaskans, are apparently fairly shocked at the news. It’s like finding out your cousin just got picked…you’re excited because the person is familiar to you, but at the same time you’re completely perplexed that anybody would choose them, because you’re more familiar with your cousin than the people doing the picking.

-jb

Another non-story: McCain a shameless liar.

Aug 27, 2008 in Barack Obama, The senility of John McCain

Please, CNN, don’t think of touching this one, unless you make sure you play the ad, talk amongst yourselves, then ask no liberals or Obama surrogates while making sure that a Republican strategist gets to repeat talking points.

Via Sullivan, via via The Carpetbagger Report, Obama says this:

“Strong countries and strong Presidents talk to their adversaries. That’s what Kennedy did with Khrushchev. That’s what Reagan did with Gorbachev. That’s what Nixon did with Mao. I mean, think about it: Iran, Cuba, Venezuela — these countries are tiny compared to the Soviet Union. They don’t pose a serious threat to us the way the Soviet Union posed a threat to us. And yet we were willing to talk to the Soviet Union at the time when they were saying, ‘We’re going to wipe you off the planet.’ And ultimately, that direct engagement led to a series of measures that helped prevent nuclear war and over time allowed the kind of opening that brought down the Berlin Wall.”

If voters read that, they’d give it the thumb’s up. It’s nearly 100% fact supporting Obama’s opening thesis.

But McCain runs an ad, which I won’t grant space here, that puffs up Iran, and says “Obama says it’s not a threat!”

Headline News: Can America afford another deceptive warmonger?

-jb

More on McCain’s out-of-touch rich ass.

Aug 21, 2008 in Barack Obama, Stupidity, The senility of John McCain

It’s hard to believe he’s this rich…he’s been playing a good game for some years, but there the facts are. Then again, it’s hard to believe his policies favor the rich as a matter of principle too. Here’s another good video on McCain’s mansions:

[youtube ek3jAkx9m10]

Well, voters, how about electing another rich guy who didn’t earn his own money who institutes policies to favor other spoiled babies like himself? Or are you going to be more offended by the fact that the guy trying to help you out has a few bucks he earned himself? It’s time to get serious, folks.

-jb

Putting 2 and 2 together (or, rather, Bush and McCain).

Aug 19, 2008 in Politics, The senility of John McCain

Yes, Andrew Sullivan is my favorite blogger, and his ability to put his finger on and elucidate things that only lurk in the nether regions of my consciousness is why. I had all the information necessary to ask the question, but he does it first: Does Bush think John McCain was tortured? What Republican does, in fact?

In all the discussion of John McCain’s recently recovered memory of a religious epiphany in Vietnam, one thing has been missing. The torture that was deployed against McCain emerges in all the various accounts. It involved sleep deprivation, the withholding of medical treatment, stress positions, long-time standing, and beating. Sound familiar?

According to the Bush administration’s definition of torture, McCain was therefore not tortured.

This, being irrefutable, is something you’ll only get silence or obfuscation from Republicans on. And a meme the media will never pick up and run with. Republicans are always given a handicap by the media because if they didn’t, fatal contradictions like this would disrupt their precious ratings-driving balanced dichotomy between Republicans and Democrats.

Sullivan drives the stake deeper:

And the techniques used are, according to the president, tools to extract accurate information. And so the false confessions that McCain was forced to make were, according to the logic of the Bush administration, as accurate as the “intelligence” we have procured from “interrogating” terror suspects. Feel safer?

Personally, it has been mystifying to me how anybody could have felt safer with George W. Bush at the wheel, and the prospect of hothead John McCain with his finger on the button is just as scary. He has no impulse control, no wisdom, and his honor is long gone:

Now the kicker: in the Military Commissions Act, McCain acquiesced to the use of these techniques against terror suspects by the CIA. And so the tortured became the enabler of torture. Someone somewhere cried out in pain for the same reasons McCain once did. And McCain let it continue.

A bankrupt candidate for a bankrupt party.

-jb

John McCain: Not just old, but an asshole too.

Jul 27, 2008 in Barack Obama, Old Man McCain, Politics, The senility of John McCain

Is there another conclusion? Too bad this doesn’t fit the MSM narrative yet!

-jb

McTrainwreck

Jul 23, 2008 in Old Man McCain, Politics, The senility of John McCain

Is this some kind of weird Phoenix strategy the Arizona Senator is pursuing, where he must first completely self-combust before rising out of the ashes? That Katie Couric interview was a humdinger, man…right after McCain’s campaign resorts to whining about the press following the hot story Obama:

Asked whether he believes he’d had unfair media coverage, McCain replied: “I don’t think so. I think …it is what it is. I’m a big boy. And I’m enjoying every minute of the campaigning. And I’m certainly not complaining. And, in fact, I think it’s fun to watch.”

Look, I know there’s frustration in the McCain camp over Obama’s hugely successful world tour, and Obama’s pwnership of the foreign policy debate, but keep it together, folks!

Piling on, Tom Tomorrow addresses the McCain phenomenon. Can railing against the New York Times keep you excited until November, Republicans?

-jb

McCain’s promise: Christmas every day!

Jul 22, 2008 in Clueless Conservatives, Iraq, Old Man McCain, Politics, The senility of John McCain

Every day of his campaign, that is…for Democrats…and all sane people who are tired of Bush and his party. I am so happy not to be a Republican right now:

McCain: I don’t know how you respond to something that is as — such a false depiction of what actually happened. Colonel McFarlane [phonetic] was contacted by one of the major Sunni sheiks. Because of the surge we were able to go out and protect that sheik and others. And it began the Anbar Awakening. I mean, that’s just a matter of history.

History disagrees, vehemently:

The Awakening began in Anbar Province more than a year before the surge and took off in the summer and fall of 2006 in Ramadi and elsewhere, long before extra U.S. forces started flowing into Iraq in February and March of 2007.

More historical record here (PDF format).

Now for another game of “McCain: Lying, Stupid or Really Old?” How is this guy getting over 40% in the polls again?

-jb

UPDATE: CBS kindly edits out McCain’s blunder. They’re really sorry about Dan Rather.

McCain: Really old or really dim? I don’t care!

Jul 21, 2008 in Old Man McCain, The senility of John McCain

After 8 years of arguing if Bush is lying or just stupid, and now we have the chance to wonder if McCain is stupid or just really old. Just what the country needs, right?

-jb

Another friendly reminder…

Jul 16, 2008 in Barack Obama, Clueless Conservatives, Iraq, Middle East, Politics, The senility of John McCain, War on Terra

If you’re into politicians with military service, John McCain might earn some points for being a good soldier, if not much of a leader. Unfortunately, he’s a bit of an outlier party-wise, as the policies he pursues are the property of chickenhawks whose party happens to be the only one he had a shot at getting the Presidential nomination from. Barack Obama, of course, didn’t enlist in the military to no national detriment as there were no wars to fight in, like John McCain, or dodge while endorsing like George W. Bush and the brains behind the Chickenhawk party. Thankfully he managed to avoid trying to compensate for his insecurities by advocating for the Iraq War, and has listened to wiser men than John McCain also experienced in war by insisting on an exit strategy and understanding that permanent bases in Iraq will not bring peace.

On that note, I love this (somewhat old) list:

* Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage, “other priorities.”
* Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
* Tom Delay: did not serve.
* Roy Blunt: did not serve.
* Bill Frist: did not serve.
* Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
* Rick Santorum: did not serve.
* Trent Lott: did not serve.
* John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
* Jeb Bush: did not serve.
* Karl Rove: did not serve.
* Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. “Bad knee.” The man who attacked Max
Cleland’s patriotism.
* Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
* Vin Weber: did not serve.
* Richard Perle: did not serve.
* Douglas Feith: did not serve.
* Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
* Richard Shelby: did not serve.
* Jon Kyl: did not serve.
* Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
* Christopher Cox: did not serve.
* Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
* Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as flight instructor.
* George W. Bush: failed to complete his six-year National Guard; got assigned
to Alabama so he could campaign for family friend running for U.S. Senate;
failed to show up for required medical exam, disappeared from duty.
* Phil Gramm: did not serve.
* John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and
Distinguished Flying Cross.
* Dana Rohrabacher: did not serve.
* John M.. McHugh: did not serve.
* JC Watts: did not serve.
* Jack Kemp: did not serve. “Knee problem,” but continued in NFL for 8 years.
* Dan Quayle: Journalism unit of the Indiana National Guard.
* Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
* George Pataki: did not serve.
* Spencer Abraham: did not serve.
* John Engler: did not serve.
* Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.
* Arnold Schwarzenegger: Served in Austrian Army, jailed once for AWOL.
* Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role making
movies.

——————-
Pundits & Preachers, etc.
——————-

* Sean Hannity: did not serve.
* Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a ‘pilonidal cyst.’)
* Bill O’Reilly: did not serve.
* Michael Savage: did not serve.
* George Will: did not serve.
* Chris Matthews: did not serve.
* Paul Gigot: did not serve.
* Bill Bennett: did not serve.
* Pat Buchanan: did not serve.
* Bill Kristol: did not serve.
* Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
* Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
* Clarence Thomas: did not serve.
* Ralph Reed: did not serve.
* Michael Medved: did not serve.
* Charlie Daniels: did not serve.
* Ted Nugent: did not serve. (He only shoots at things that don’t shoot back.)

Click on the link to see some notable Democrats who served, but that’s not so much the point. Military experience may teach you nothing, and those who don’t have it may be very wise indeed. But clearly the nation has a lesson to learn about those with no military experience who fantasize and romanticize war, and the soldiers who get sucked into their pomp and circumstance, especially those who emerge from losing wars declaring they “know how to win wars.”

-jb

p.s. Some minute additional editing of list done to no great effect.

McCain, the fluff candidate.

Jun 06, 2008 in Barack Obama, Clueless Conservatives, Election crap, Old Man McCain, The senility of John McCain

Republicans really are stuck with a turd with John McCain. They’re faced with a Democratic candidate who, the popular narrative suggests, is a master of style and presentation, while their man, John McCain, is a wheedling, stilted eyesore feeding off his opponent’s best lines. What to do?

First instincts kick in, and immediately it is concluded that they must turn it into a style vs. substance debate. Every yin must have a yang, no? It must be so. It needs to be so. Rightwingers tell themselves, this is what we want, what we need, what we will do. Initiate action.

Reverse and retreat, MY FRIENDS. Code Red: McCain is the style vs. Obama’s substance.

…in any contest between Obama and McCain, Obama is the substantive, policy-oriented candidate, while McCain is the one offering mostly pious bromides about victory, service and being American. If style often beats substance, Obama is in trouble because, as his supporters tirelessly remind us, Obama does have a substantive policy agenda (even if he doesn’t spend as much time talking about it and a lot of his boosters don’t care what it is) and McCain’s entire campaign has been even more driven by biography and character than Obama’s.

Daniel Larison feels free to joke about Obama fearing McCain on style. The mis-match is indeed near farcical.

-jb

SHOCKING NEWS: Cheap outrage from Clinton, McCain, Norquist!

Apr 12, 2008 in Barack Obama, Clintonitis, Election crap, The senility of John McCain

You decide: Politicians displaying genuine outrage on behalf of the people (who are so kind to remain silent), or willing to say anything for political advantage?

This is about the sickness of our modern political culture and its inability to be intellectually honest. Neither Clinton, McCain, nor-Quist believe what they’re saying. Three intelligent Washington veterans? Please. They simply recognize Obama’s words as something that can be easily misconstrued, so they leap to be the loudest one to do so. Via said action, they reveal their own contempt for the intelligence of the electorate, trying to punish Obama for, once again, talking to the public like they’re adults. And, in another indefensible move that should surprise nobody at this point, Hillary Clinton is actually sending out e-mails with soundbites from Republicans attacking Obama.

Obama’s strength, however, is that he doesn’t easily play this game, and keeps sticking to the truth:

So I made this statement– so, here’s what rich. Senator Clinton says ‘No, I don’t think that people are bitter in Pennsylvania. You know, I think Barack’s being condescending.’ John McCain says, ‘Oh, how could he say that? How could he say people are bitter? You know, he’s obviously out of touch with people.’

“Out of touch? Out of touch? I mean, John McCain–it took him three tries to finally figure out that the home foreclosure crisis was a problem and to come up with a plan for it, and he’s saying I’m out of touch? Senator Clinton voted for a credit card-sponsored bankruptcy bill that made it harder for people to get out of debt after taking money from the financial services companies, and she says I’m out of touch? No, I’m in touch. I know exactly what’s going on. I know what’s going on in Pennsylvania. I know what’s going on in Indiana. I know what’s going on in Illinois. People are fed-up. They’re angry and they’re frustrated and they’re bitter. And they want to see a change in Washington and that’s why I’m running for President of the United States of America.”

Jack Cafferty, displaying his usual common sense, notes a hint of self-defensiveness in the motives of Clinton and McCain:

And what Barack Obama was suggesting is not that the people of Pennsylvania are to blame for any of it. It’s that the jerks in Washington, D.C., as represented by the ten years of the Bushes and the Clintons and the McCains who have lied to and misled these people for all of this time while they shipped the jobs over seas and signed phony trade deals like NAFTA are to blame for the deteriorating economic conditions among America’s middle class. I mean, I’m a college dropout and I can read the damn thing and figure it out.

This is the kind of rotten bullshit that does turn people bitter about D.C. And when threatened, it coordinates its own defense with stunning rapidity and collaboration. Trust Clinton, McCain, and co. on this and you’ll deserve the knife you find jutting out of your back.

-jb

UPDATE: This sounds to me like a more authentic reaction:

I’m a white guy. I live in upstate NY. I make like 18k a year right now. I can you right now that Obama has a lot of heads nodding along with him on this, and most of don’t belong to his elitist supporters, or the elitist bloggers who make up the A-list of the blogosphere.

What Obama said is unvarnished truth. Its a truth many of us have waited our lives to hear a real politician say. THAT is what has the media so rabid to try and cast these comments as some devil’s screed. They know damn well that people are more likely to agree with them than disagree, and they’re woring over time to make people dismiss them automatically without ever thinking on them. That isn’t going to happen. 20 years of this shit is too long already.