A fearless prediction: My beautiful election enters its dark phase.
Lots of signs of the new darkness. Mr. Obama's army is swarming, blocking lines when Obama critics show up for radio interviews. A study out Thursday said the Obama campaign has become more negative than the McCain campaign. There is the hacking--no one at this point knows by whom--of Sarah Palin's personal email account. From Mr. Obama himself, a new edge. He tells an audience in Elko, Nev., to "argue" with McCain supporters and "get in their face." Bambi is playing Chicago style. No doubt everyone around him has been saying, and for some weeks now, "Get tough." But this is not how to get tough, and it does not reflect a shrewd reading of what the moment demands. People want depth, not ferocity. We've got nerves that jingle-jangle-jingle.
And it gives Mr. McCain a beautiful opening. He can now play Oldest and Wisest, damning the new meanness more in sorrow than in anger.
Everyone here remembers the now infamous ad against Harold Ford Jr. which has gone into the annals of Republican sleaze as the "call me" ad. Well just when you thought that it cannot be topped here is the next one:
A few days ago I had asked "Who's at the top of Republican ticket?"
Who's at the top of the Republican ticket?
by tarheel74, Tue Sep 09, 2008 at 06:51:04 PM EST
Seriously who is it? I saw an ad today and I scratched my head. Is there something we don't know?
Now we all know John McCain is 72 years old...a 72 year old cancer survivor....melanoma....of the neck. And till date we have no idea what his latest health report says. Then today I saw this ad on Halperin's website:
Now tell me who is on top of the GOP ticket? Who is setting the tone of this election? Who is making all the policy decisions? Who is injecting culture wars when the economy is headed towards a great depression? Who? Not the old man. It is quite evident that McCain is no longer headlining the GOP. Is he ready to lead? Did we miss something here?
Now that we have moved past the insanity of pigs, lipsticks, moose and hockey-moms we know where the chips stand. I had always maintained that win Obama has to stop being the nice guy and throw some punches. He cannot afford to wait and watch the McCain campaign to stumble or for the press to call out in his favor every time.
Robert Kutter (economist and founder of The American Prospect) wrote a scathing post about that:
Advocates of a tougher line have had difficulty breaking through the palace guard of senior advisers -- Messrs David Plouffe, David Axelrod, and Robert Gibbs -- who have reinforced Obama's sometime tendencies to be "post-ideological" and "post-partisan" rather than hanging the Wall Street meltdown where it belongs -- around the necks of the Republicans and their strategy of letting Wall Street wreak whatever havoc it wishes. Obama seems to recover his own voice the further away he gets from his handlers.
McCain himself was very quick to reverse course, rushing out an ad promising "tougher rules on Wall Street to protect your life savings." Speaking on morning talk shows, McCain was born again. The people "have been betrayed by a casino on Wall Street of greed, corruption and excess that has damaged them and their futures," he said. "And we're going to fix it."
"I am a Teddy Roosevelt Republican," he insisted. "Teddy Roosevelt believed that we needed an economy that can function without government interference. But he also said unfettered capitalism can breed corruption. We're seeing Teddy Roosevelt's words come true."
"McCain sounded more populist than Obama," one disgusted Democratic senator told me. McCain's latest turnabout of course was at odds with his entire Senate record, of supporting one deregulation after another. McCain was even a big booster of Social Security privatization -- which would have whacked retirees if the Bush Administration -- with McCain's support -- had managed to enact it during the stock-bubble years. The Obama campaign, having trouble with retirees who usually back Democrats, has managed to keep McCain's views on sacking Social Security a well kept secret.
It however showed in the polls at the beginning of the week when he was still trying to find his voice, still trying to debate whether to attack, whether to sully his "brand" with those doyens of Washington journalists who had seen in him post-partisan leader. But what do you do when your message is being stolen from under your nose by your opponent and your advisers still hesitate to play hardball politics? What do you do when your donors want to see a tougher approach from you because they don't want to see their investments go down the drain? What do you do when you are getting effectively painted as a weak-kneed liberal and empty suit by someone who really has nothing to offer but a disingenuous campaign? You get tough. You get tougher.
Our favorite clueless VP candidate, whom we hate to love and love to hate, will be on the H&C show interviewed by the fool Sean Hannity. As is expected fluff will fly. Hang onto your seats ladies and gents lest you choke on tons of downy fluff.
What do you do when you run on empty rhetoric? What do you do when you have NO policies? What do you do when the freakshow of lipsticks, pigs, smears and pitbulls are taken away and you are faced with a real crisis, real issues and real challenges? You lose it...completely.
I am thrilled at the new direction the campaign has taken. This aggressive tone should have been there from the day he secured his nomination. But before we celebrate let me remind people that things are still way too close for comfort.
I am serious. That is what he writes. The Republicans have no clue how bad the economy is. This idiot makes Sean Hannity sound smart. Anyway this is far too serious to make light off. Please rec and pass this along to other people.