McCain’s Verbal Acrobatics

McCain does his best to make two mutually exclusive claims at once, leading to hilarity:

John McCain with a bit of verbal acrobatics on CNN’s American Morning, trying to say the stimulus package was a failure while decrying the “politics” being played when Ray LaHood told his Governor they were free to follow McCain and Kyl’s advice and turn down the money for Arizona.


CHETRY: All right. Republicans are hitting the Obama administration hard, not only over the cost of overhauling health care, but also the stimulus plan. Whether it’s working effectively and whether it’s worth the billions it cost. In Arizona, it turned up to a dustup between one senator and members of the administration, and now Senator John McCain is joining that fight over whether the stimulus spending should be outright canceled.

[snip]

CHETRY: What I’m wondering, though, is so we have Jon Kyl criticizing the stimulus, and saying that it’s failing.

MCCAIN: As have I, and it is.

CHETRY: Right. And both senators from the state are saying that. So, what about perhaps putting your money…

MCCAIN: We’re saying it failed.

CHETRY: What about putting your money where your mouth is and, OK, let’s not take any money.

MCCAIN: We are saying that it failed, it has failed by any measurement. And by the way, one of the cabinet secretaries told me over the phone in these words that the letter that was sent is political b.s. That’s what he said to me. And you know what? He’s right.

[snip - during which McCain does everything he can to change the subject, and manifestly does not attempt to put his money where his mouth is]

CHETRY: Back to the stimulus money, though. For and you Jon Kyl…

MCCAIN: It’s our tax dollars, and we obviously feel very strongly that we don’t want our tax dollars wasted, especially Arizona’s tax dollars. We send more money to Washington. The bill has been passed, the money is being distributed. Unfortunately, only 10 percent of it, and that is the case. But the stimulus has been a failure and everybody knows it.

CHETRY: So your governor, Jan Brewer, did put up on the Web site, where this money is going. Saying it’s going to protect some of (INAUDIBLE), it’s going to grow Arizona’s future, it’s going to create jobs. The mayor of Phoenix, who is a Democrat, says that he needs the money to build roads and to put people to work. They’re on the frontlines of these, are they wrong?

MCCAIN: I’m sure they’re probably – of course, they are correct in that the money will be of some help. It has been a failure and it is an outright failure and that’s undeniable.

Only 10% of the stimulus has been distributed, it’s already employing people and helping cities and states avoid utter meltdown, and Arizona doesn’t want to give any of the money back, but this fucktard declares it a failure. Priceless.

Sometimes, I wonder if John McLame realizes just how very, very ridiculous he sounds. I just hope Arizonans, especially those who are currently enjoying stimulus success, laugh this assclown out of his Senate seat come next election.

McCain Hires Racist Assclowns for GOTV Efforts

Someone hasn’t been reading his How to Win Friends and Influence People lately:

Sounds like that vaunted GOP microtargeting machine might be ready for a bit of a tune-up. From TPM Reader QG

Interesting anecdote and probably a testament to ground organization. I have no idea what this means. Friday night (which happens to be the start of our Sabbath) my wife answered the phone to hear a man stating he was from the McCain-Palin campaign. He asked who she was supporting. She replied that we will vote for Obama. He replied with “but he’s a f—–g n—er!”. Before I get to my wife’s response I’ll first have to say that I understand desperation and I also understand that this pitch may actually work for a few people. I also understand that there are people who are whack-jobs phone-banking for both sides. But here are some facts:

My wife and I are Black. Citing the fact that Obama is a f—-g n—er as a way to sway our vote may not be a great idea. My wife and I live in Maryland… Baltimore, MD…. One of the most African American areas of Baltimore Maryland. How on earth did our phone numbers get on to a McCain volunteers phone bank list of potential voters to be calling at this stage in the game? We have never received a call from the Obama campaign.

Just weird. Not sure what to make of it… but that’s not a good sign of organization. If it did anything it made us want to donate more. BTW, the rest of the call went downhill from there. My wife prayed for forgiveness after the call.

Remarkable. All I can say is, I hope all of McCain’s GOTV efforts are this successful.

We’re Talking to Syria! (No We Aren’t!) (Yes We Are!) (No!) (Yes!)

Could someone please tell McCain that it might be a good idea to get his surrogates on the same fucking page sometime in the next twenty-four hours? Only right now you have to be a fan of terminal confusion as well as another four years of Bush/Cheney madness to vote for this fucktard:

In a new interview with Foreign Policy magazine, Syrian ambassador Imad Moustapha said that Syria is “doing everything possible within our means” to stop insurgents from crossing into Iraq, and decried the recent U.S. strike into Syria as a “terrorist, criminal act.” Most interestingly, Moutapha said that Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) personally assured him that a McCain presidency would open up a dialogue with Syria:

FP: U.S. presidential hopeful Barack Obama says that he would be willing to sit down with states that are now considered enemies of the United States. Is that encouraging to you?

IM: I have reason to believe that even if [Senator John] McCain becomes president of the United States, he will also be inclined to sit and talk with Syria. I can tell you this on the record: Senator Joe Lieberman, who is supposed to be very close to McCain, has said this explicitly and very clearly to me personally.

This is a startling revelation, considering McCain and Lieberman have attacked politicians who have sought to engage Syria diplomatically…

Go. Read the rest. Return.

How fucked up is that, eh? Either they’re lying out their asses to Syria – and I don’t doubt they would, seeing as how they do so enjoy lying to Americans – or they’ve completely changed their tune. Again, I wouldn’t be surprised. McCain ain’t called Jukebox John for nothing.

Either way, I have serious doubts that a McCain administration would be stable enough for other countries to deal with. America’s forced the world to put up with batshit insane for too long. Time to give them, and ourselves, a much needed breather.

Beyond Pathetic

Obama pulls in crowds of up to 100,000 on a regular basis. I didn’t think there were 100,000 people total in America who gave enough of a rat’s ass about politics to stand for hours in line just to get packed in like sardines for yet more hours in order to listen to a man’s stump speeches, but here we are. Obama’s just that good.

McCain had a rally in Ohio today – wonder how he’s measuring up? Oh, deary me:


The McCain campaign actually had to bus in school kids from the surrounding area in order to fill the event. As reported by MSNBC:
A local school district official confirmed after the event that of the 6,000 people estimated by the fire marshal to be in attendance this morning, more than 4,000 were bused in from schools in the area. The entire 2,500-student Defiance School District was in attendance, the official said, in addition to at least three other schools from neighboring districts, one of which sent 14 buses.

This happened — as if a reminder were needed — less than a week out from the election, when the heat of the campaign should be drawing record crowds.

I feel sorry for those kids. I remember the agony of being forced to attend rallies at which a bunch of blithering idiots yawped at us for an hour or so. But at least we were only window dressing for our school spirit rather than warm bodies to plump up the crowd numbers for a two-bit Republicon hack who bears an eerie resemblance to that embarassing elderly relative who rants at the young-uns from the front porch.

McCain seems to feel safe with kids who are too young to vote. Maybe he feels that seeing his former-POW self hurl insults like “socialist” at his political opponent while the crazy adults filling in the cracks in the audience scream “communist!” “terrorist!” and other choice epithets will ensure the kiddies are brainwashed enough to vote Republicon when they come of age. It hardly matters to McCain anyway: by the time these children are all growed up and voting straight Democratic tickets in hopes of purging the trauma from their minds, he’ll be safely dead or demented. But it’s a far different story when it comes to people who are old enough to vote and young enough to be suspected Obama supporters:


Audience members escorted out of Sen. John McCain’s, R-Ariz., campaign event in Cedar Falls questioned why they were asked to leave Sunday’s rally even though they were not protesting.

David Zarifis, director of public safety for the University of Northern Iowa, said McCain staffers requested UNI police assist in escorting out “about four or five” people from the rally prior to McCain’s speech.

[snip]

[Lara Elborno] said McCain staffers wouldn’t tell her why she was being asked to leave and when she got outside, she saw “a group of about 20 people” who had all been asked to leave.

Elborno said after seeing the people who were asked to leave, she was concerned that McCain’s staffers were profiling people on appearance to determine who might be a potential protester.

“When I started talking to them, it kind of became clear that they were kind of just telling people to leave that they thought maybe would be disruptive, but based on what? Based on how they looked,” Elborno said. “It was pretty much all young people, the college demographic.”

Guess why they’d be chucking college-age people out on their ear? Yup:


Among 18- to 29-year-olds, Obama leads by 32 points in the latest Gallup poll, by 36 points in the latest CBS/New York Times poll and by 39 points in the latest Pew poll [and 29 in the latest R2K - DemFromCT].

McCain’s ham-handed tactics might make those numbers rise:

“I saw a couple that had been escorted out and they were confused as well, and the girl was crying, so I said ‘Why are you crying? and she said ‘I already voted for McCain, I’m a Republican, and they said we had to leave because we didn’t look right,’” Elborno said.

I’m sure that’s one McCain voter wishing she could take that vote back. Makes you wonder how many more have realized their mistake before it’s too late?

One more thing I want to note here: Republicons have an interesting habit of throwing stones from their glass houses. It hadn’t really occurred to me until now to chalk that “communist” bullshit up under the column headed “I know you are, but what am I?” However, the above noted items make me think I shouldn’t have been so hasty to write it in under the “Hey, Red-Baiting Worked in the Fifties!” label.

Let us take note of the similarities between McCain’s actions and the good old Soviet Communist Party:

  1. “Everything that comes out of their mouths is a lie.” Check.
  2. “Want total control over the media.” Check.
  3. “Compulsory shows of support by the masses for the beloved Party.” Check.
  4. “Paranoid purges of suspected enemies, even when those ‘enemies’ are actually allies.” Check.
  5. “Failed ideology forces them to manufacture and attack enemies to keep the people distracted from harsh reality.” Oh, check.

Hmm. It appears the old Soviet Communists and the McCain campaign have much more in common than just the color red. Remember your Shakespeare, my darlings: the next time McCain blithers on about Obama’s communist tendencies, we’d be right in thinking Grampa McCrankypants doth protest too much.

(Tip o’ the shot glass to Steve Benen and Kos)

Peanut Butter Jelly Time

When you’re served a premium shot like this:


Barack Obama campaigned earlier in Raleigh, North Carolina, principally relying on the closing-statement speech he unveiled in Ohio on Monday. Today, however, he added a new paragraph.

“[B]ecause he knows his economic theories don’t work, he’s been spending these last few days calling me every name in the book,” Obama said. “Lately, he’s called me a ‘socialist’ for wanting to roll back the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans so we can finally give tax relief to the middle class. I don’t know what’s next. By the end of the week, he’ll be accusing me of being a secret communist because I shared my toys in kindergarten. I shared my peanut butter and jelly sandwich.”

… you’ve just got to chase it down with this:

More Meet the Press Fun with John McLame

I think they’re keeping the wrong damned candidate off the Sunday talk show circuit:

Total meltdown for McSame on “Meet the Press” this morning. Watch how defensive he gets when Brokaw’s cites poll after poll that indicates people don’t think Palin is qualified to be Vice President. “Because?! Not qualified…because?!” he snaps.

Then, after some creepy, nervous giggles about the Veep debate, McSame starts ticking off the reasons Palin is qualified to be President and gets completely lost in the bullshit.

MCSAME: She has more executive experience than Sen. Biden and Sen. Obama, together. She took on the governor of her own party because she had seen what she’s thought was corruption. She’s been a mayor. She has 24,000 people underneath her. Her husband is a, uh, works the third shift on the oil who…in…facilities in the North Slope. He’s a, ah… the-they have a won…she has executive experience…

Fail.

No kidding. When you have to tell the nation that your VP pick is qualified because her husband works graveyards for an oil company, you picked the wrong fucking VP.

It would be hysterically funny if it wasn’t so appalling.

For yet more Meet the Press Fun with John McLame:

Senior Moment: McCain Forgets Which Secretary of State Endorsed Him

Brokaw nails McCain on taxing the wealthy, Reagan’s record

McCain to Brokaw: I reject your objective measures of reality and substitute my own

Fun fact: McCain was speaking to Brokaw from Waterloo, Iowa. Could this be a sign?

Dave Letterman Hands McCain’s Ass to Him

Holy fucking shit, Batman! Dave Letterman absolutely annihilates McCain over the Obama-associates-with-terrorists bullshit. PWNS him with G. Gordon Liddy:

Hoping to make amends, McCain appeared on Letterman’s show, hat in hand, and acknowledged that he’d erred. As it turns out, though, that’s not the interesting part. The real news here is that Letterman did what most reporters have been unwilling to do.

Questioning the premise of McCain’s relentless guilt-by-association attacks, Letterman noted that people in public life can’t necessarily be held accountable for everyone they’ve interacted with. When McCain protested a bit, Letterman asked two highly relevant questions: “Did you not have a relationship with Gordon Liddy?” and “Did you attend a fundraiser at his house?” McCain, looking confused, conceded to having “met” Liddy. After a commercial break, McCain added, “I know Gordon Liddy. He paid his debt, he went to prison…. I’m not in any was embarrassed to know Gordon Liddy.”

That’s an interesting response. Liddy is, of course, a convicted felon who has “acknowledged preparing to kill someone during the Ellsberg break-in ‘if necessary’; plotting to murder journalist Jack Anderson; plotting with a ‘gangland figure’ to murder Howard Hunt to stop him from cooperating with investigators; plotting to firebomb the Brookings Institution; and plotting to kidnap ‘leftist guerillas’ at the 1972 Republican National Convention — a plan he outlined to the Nixon administration using terminology borrowed from the Nazis.” Liddy also once famously gave his supporters advice on how best to kill federal officials (he recommended shooting them in the head because they might be wearing flak jackets).

Despite this scandalous past, McCain has accepted thousands of dollars in contributions from Liddy, attended a fundraiser in his honor at Liddy’s home, and told Liddy that he’s “proud of” him.

Also remember, Liddy can be fairly described as “unrepentant.” When asked if he regretted his felonies, “A vein twitches angrily on one of his scales, but he replies in a level voice, ‘No.’”

The fact that Letterman just slammed McCain in the gut with this is outstanding. It’s about time that stupid Republicon tricks like guilt-by-association came back to bite them in the arse.

Here’s the vid:

Memo to self: Do not under any circumstances ever piss Dave Letterman off.

Ready on Day One? Oh, Puh-leeze

If we were to select a president on preparedness alone, there would be no contest:


So, how are the transition teams doing? Sam Stein has a fascinating report, which tells us quite a bit about how the two candidates’ operations approach their responsibilities.


…Sen. Barack Obama has organized an elaborate well-staffed network to prepare for his possible ascension to the White House, while Sen. John McCain has all but put off such work until after the election.

The Democratic nominee has enlisted the assistance of dozens of individuals — divided into working groups for particular federal agencies — to produce policy agendas and lists of recommended appointees. As evidence of their advanced preparations, officials provided a copy of the strict ethics guidelines that individuals working on the transition effort are required to sign.

John McCain, by contrast, has done little. Campaign spokespersons did not respond to requests for elaboration. But one official with direct knowledge, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, expressed concern with McCain’s approach. The Arizona Senator has instructed his team
to not spend time on the transition effort, according to the source, both out of a desire to have complete focus on winning the election as well as a superstitious belief that the campaign shouldn’t put the cart before the horse.


Look, I realize it may sound premature to work on a transition before an election, but this is pretty important work. Presidents need staffs who can take over a massive executive and complicated branch bureaucracy on Day One. Failing to take this seriously now may make the nation vulnerable come January.

The Obama campaign seems to be a model of discipline and organization: “Obama’s transition effort has been organized into roughly a dozen teams of six to eight people to plot out the approach for each agency, according to a Democratic official. The ethics code governing the process prohibits staff from working on subjects that could be deemed a financial conflict of interests, either to that member or that member’s family.”

The McCain campaign has no ethics policy in place for the transition, and the head of the team has reportedly held a few conference calls.

One approach is deeply irresponsible. The other approach is Obama’s.


I just want to ask two small questions here: if McCain isn’t taking his chance at the presidency seriously, why should we? Why the fuck would we want to elect a man who displays this extreme lack of interest in his responsibilities?

When your drive to win and your craven superstition keep you from ensuring you’re prepared to step into the Big Man’s shoes, I think that states quite clearly that you’re not cut out to lead this country.